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Summer Music Festivals and Weddings – Can you have fun without a drink?

There are several summer time events that used to strike terror in my heart when I thought of ‘doing’ them sober - BBQs, pub gardens, music festivals, and weddings to name a few. There are loads of types of invitations we receive and perhaps send that we might now like to give a bit more thought to now we are either reconsidering our relationship with alcohol or are fully committed to a sober lifestyle.

It might be useful to really consider the invitations when they hit your inbox. Is this event, festival, activity something you do REALLY want to attend. I know I used to always say “Yes” to every invitation because I suffered horribly from FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) I would hate to see posts or messages after an event if I hadn’t been there myself and I would certainly use alcohol as a crutch to ‘help’ me at any event I where I was feeling overwhelmed. Now I’m much more careful about what I agree to and if I have any sneaking doubt about potentially not enjoying something I consider saying “No thank you” at the earliest opportunity. It is always easier to say no in the first place than it is to try to get out of something later down the line. I’ve reconsidered whether or not I actually love music festivals or not. I used to be ‘all in’ but now I accept that I am much more of a day visit person than an all weekender person. I realise that music festivals are actually often ‘too people-y’ for me and alcohol used to be a tool I used to cope with all the noise, movement and activity around me. I now don’t need to cope in that way because I understand myself better and realise I can take myself off to a quiet area and usually lie on the grass and have a snooze or look up at the sky for a break. My first sober wedding was a steep learning curve. I’d never realised before just how much I relied on alcohol as a comfort when I was expected to make loads of conversation with lots of people I didn’t know and stand around a lot without a focus. I hit upon a winning formula though. I gave the fizz a wide steer on the way in and headed to the bar to pick up a non alcoholic drink, I talked and joined in all through the day into the late afternoon and then I went and sat in my car in the car park for a break (even better if you are staying over – head to your room for a bit)! I realise it sounds like I wasn’t enjoying myself but that isn’t true! I was having a lovely time I just needed a bit of a break. I listened to a podcast episode, faffed around on my phone for a bit and rang a friend for a quick chat. I then went back into the wedding to pick up where I left off. I’d told my husband what I was doing and no one had missed me. In choosing this fabulous sober/alcohol free life I have come to realise I have more introvert tendencies than I ever realised before. Finding a way to socialise and embrace a bit of people free or quiet time has been key to enjoying music festivals and weddings. Whatever lovely events are in your diary this summer plan ahead and plan for your success and enjoyment.

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