I want to drink less

Drinking can be fun, it helps us relax, it’s a great social lubricant. But sometimes we go too far and some of us develop unhealthy drinking habits that damage our lives.

Drinking is part of NZ culture, but a lot of us drink too much. It’s not just a problem for alcoholics, everyday blokes are drinking too much too. We know we should cut back a bit so here are some tips for doing that.

ideAs and inspiration

  • If you’re asking the question, you must have a pretty good idea that the answer is probably “yes”.
  • If you’re interested in general guidelines, the Ministry of Health says drink less than 2 beers a day and have two days a week without drinking. Obviously, the more you drink above that, the more you’re wrecking your health.
  • If you lie about how much you drink to other people, or yourself, then it’s a problem.
  • Use The Tool to find out how much you’re actually drinking.
  • It’s pretty safe to say most of us drink too much, at least occasionally.

It’s going to take a fair bit of will power to change your drinking habits. Especially if your mates are drinkers too. Here are some things to try that might work for you:

  • Tell your mates what you’re trying to do. Good mates will let you get on with it. They might even join you.
  • Just try drinking a little less than you normally would. Making that decision might be all you need.
  • Try one day of no alcohol.
  • Build up to no drinking for a week. This can kick start the process of clearing your mind and body’s drinking habit. Then after a week go back to drinking but have a little less that you normally would.
  • Start a drinking diary. Physically write down how much you’re drinking. Then come back to it after you’ve cut down a little. It’s rewarding to see your progress.
  • Sign up for Dry July and try a month without drinking.
  • Join a support group. Whether you’re a heavy drinker or not, if the help is there, take it.
  • Check out our Helpful Links and Useful Resources sections further down. They’ll connect you with all the information and help you need to drink less.

Is cutting back on your drinking worth the effort? Yes. Here’s why.

  • Heavy drinking affects our mental and physical health, how we behave in social situations, and increases our chances of getting involved in risk taking activities like climbing buildings, petty crime, and being an asshole.
  • Alcohol is really really bad for your liver. The good new is that your liver can regenerate itself when you give it a rest. The bad news is, the damage occurs really quickly when you binge drink.
  • If you’re turning to drink as an escape, then you’re not really addressing your actual problem.
  • The next day, you’re probably tired, short tempered, impatient, can’t concentrate, and have trouble doing your job properly.
  • Hangovers are bad news.

How much are you drinking?

A lot of the time we overestimate how much we can drink safely. Find out just how much you’re drinking with help from THE TOOL, a great online app available at alcohol.org. It’s a great site with all the information could want about alcohol.

The tool image

Harry Takes On Dry July

Harry (27) took on Dry July, a pledge to stop drinking for the month – to test his will-power. “Character building” he called it. He was hoping he would come out on July 31 with a smug smile and six pack. We caught up with Harry on July 30th – with one more day of July to go….



Here are some useful brochures and resources that you can download for more information on drinking less.

Share your story

If you would like to share your story about winning by drinking less we’d love to hear from you. Fill in the form and we’ll get in touch.