It is the start of advent and yesterday we purchased an Advent candle which brought back happy memories of my childhood. As I took my first morning walk of the holiday season yesterday a sense of being far more alive came to me.

I captured the moment by taking a snapshot of some beautiful frosty berries … obviously poisonous or not agreeable with the local bird wildlife as they had been left on the bushes they looked vibrant in their frosty jackets.

This morning is a good day and I awake with a clearer mind and purpose. I am glad that I have been working on my mornings and shuffling my booty our of bed earlier to allow me to prepare for the day. I can already feel the anchoring effects of this routine in my mind and not only does my morning alarm go off but so too does my morning mind kick in. “Take this window of opportunity and maximise and enjoy it” my little brain says.

My priority is my health at this time as Christmas is a busy time for me both at work and home. I have to prioritise this as this is the enabler for me of all other possibilities. The afternoons into evenings are particularly tricky for me because I do gradually become more wound up as my working day goes on – it’s just how I am wired and is quite normal I think.

So I am focusing on having calmer afternoons into evenings – particularly 4pm through until about 8pm and making sure that I listen to my podcasts, maybe meditate a little, eat earlier and find some calm in the family evening.

My affirmations are taking a bit of work because I want them to be true to me and as with everything new they are taking a bit of time to get used to.

I am really conscious of the impact that diet has on how I feel and last night I enjoyed “the ice-cream monster” – it’s just with ice-cream once I start I just can’t stop – fun at the time but my body knows I have over indulged on sugar this morning!

So to remind myself of my “whys” in redirecting my journey –

(1) my family (I want them to see a vibrant me who is happy and crushing life in a positive way)

(2) I have so much more to give and I want to unlock this so I can serve others more

(3) To look after my health (body, mind and spirit) and feel a sense of progression each and every day.

(4) To have more income (not for the sterling value or show) but to allow more goodness for others who I connect with and enable more possibilities.

I hope my rambling thoughts will serve someone, somewhere at some point but for now this is for me.

Happy Advent


I am going to take back my mornings and be fully nourished by them – well that’s the plan anyway.

To wake up with a clearer mind, take time out before all the “noise” starts and have clarity about my day can only be a positive thing.

I would challenge anybody to the notion that they have never fallen out of bed without direction and intention only to discover that precious hours have been lost and the day has passed by.

I am completing my daily planner and thoughts for the day and I am taking and using my mind when it is at its sharpest.

With the holiday month ahead and for me anyway my work becoming busier I am planning to be healthier during this month that at any other time.

I like this from @Lactiumofficial and I think reflects some of what has been written in “The Miracle Morning” by Hal Elrod.

Something for me to aim for Daily

SO I’m also thinking about my Mantra and as I wrote before the words DECIDE, COMMIT, RESOLVE resonate with me at the moment in particular but also the sense and real understanding that everything I have right now here and in this moment is all I need – or quite simple I have everything I need and I am grateful. Here goes:

“This is my miracle morning and I am grateful. Grateful for the new day whether dark or light, rainy or frosty and the possibilities that lie ahead. Whilst I cannot fully predict what the day might bring I can bring a sense of calm and purpose to it. I have everything I need. I will try and be kind to myself and others. I will progress each day to becoming healthier in small steps through small changes. I will have confidence in reaching out and connecting with others on my journey. With a clear mind and clarity of purpose I can move towards a more vibrant true blueprint of me. At this time I need no more than this. This is all I need. I will aim to Decide, Commit and Resolve whenever it is the right thing to do. This is how I will serve myself and others”



I’ve been thinking over the last fortnight about the words that most resonate with me about what I learned during the last fortnight.

These words will need to be trained into my mind like a scratched record that jumps over and over again reminding me of the words.In the days that have followed my awakening I have reached out for support and without request received support from those closest to me.

I have cared for myself better both mentally and physically and cleared my mind of some unhelpful patterns … but there is so much more to do. The last fortnight has shown me how easy it is to default to old patterns. The analogy I always use is tooth ache – you can’t wait to the see the dentist for this to go away and resolve your pain and pledge to clean, floss and care for your gums like you have never before – then the pain goes away and old habits involving Haribo (other brands of sweets are available) return.

This is why my mantra words are do important. SO for now or three months my mantra words are going to be DECIDE – COMMIT – RESOLVE.

1/ Decide whats needs doing

2/ Commit whatever else happens to making it work

3/ … and come up with a resolving action.

I have subsequently just realised though a google search that this is something that Tony Robbins uses – maybe I’ve read it somewhere or maybe picked up in my subconscious so I better give credit:

Tony describes it as follows:

“Finding your passion is going to give you tremendous energy, but to maintain the energy you must do the next thing. The decision really is the power that changes you life. Make this decision whilst you are still in a passionate state. If you make a decision without passion you will kill momentum.

“Decision is like war – the internal back and forth until you say “Alright I’m going to make myself do this” After you have made your decision, you must commit that no matter whether it is easy or difficult, you are going to do it. And finally you must resolve. Resolve means it’s done – there is no question what so ever!”

I have DECIDED that my journey to poor health is no more – it stopped a fortnight ago as I wandered the room clinging onto life – as I thought it was all over. Every decision I make whether directly or indirectly has to progress me forward to a better place on that journey to a healthier me.

I COMMITTED to this a fortnight ago on that rainy night at 3 am in the morning as a strange Asian film played in the background that I still do not quite understand to this day. No matter what I must progress – even if that means sometimes a few steps back and the some forward.

I will RESOLVE as I go and resolve that my decision is made and that it is done when my objectives have been met.

For now however it is time to build those action steps … one step at a time but always progressing.

I am just thinking through the first few days of starting something new and taking a new road.

I am on a journey to find new purpose and the purpose is right here in the room with me now as I write.

My daughter is currently writing down her top tips for becoming a famous artist. It’s the first time in a short while that I have fully engaged with her about what she is thinking about. The young and uncluttered mind really is something magical to behold and as I am sure you know often very wise.

“Don’t be famous because you wan’t others to see you as famous but because you enjoy doing what you are doing” – she exclaims.

“I don’t believe in perfectionism – there’s always something for us to learn and anyone who believes that perfectionism is possible are kidding themselves …”

A few days ago I genuinely thought that I was done – as in my body was telling me “no more.” I woke up at 3 am in the morning had a massive panic attack (so I am told) and hung on to be alive like I was hanging off a cliff edge and my fingers were about to break.

In that moment I thought to myself “if I make it through the next few minutes and I’m not sure I will” I’m done. Done with what you ask? Done with punishing my body and mind over and over again for a plethora of reasons that yet are not clear to me.

In that moment I knew I had to relish being alive, live every moment as present as possible and remap my path in a direction that is congruent with who I am. How I will do that I am not quite sure yet but this is in my heart.

I have committed to look after myself (body, mind and spirit), to be wise in my decisions, to serve others and live the most fulfilling life I can – through tough times and happy times.

During the hours that followed my near death experience I reached out for some medical checks – some of which have not returned favourably. I am committed to working on my health and mind in any which way I can and I have reached out for this support and will continue to do so on my new journey. I will keep those at bay that are not helpful and welcome those in who are. I will surround myself with those who bring vibrancy and life and move away from those who do not with reverence and humbleness.

In that moment as I lay on the carpet, walking aimlessly in circles clinging on to life but not quite sure what I tried to figure out if reality was true and whether it was worth staying for. I try not to sound over dramatic but that was my experience. In that moment and the hours afterwards that ensued I could not function for the new day that I had been blessed with.

Three days later and I’m grateful for this moment … the quiet steps I am putting in place for my new journey and hopeful for the coming days, months and years.

I have a lot … and I mean A LOT to be grateful for and even more to give.


I’m full up with a Chinese from last night … it was very tasty I must say too. I used it to avoid having to cook so that I could focus on being calm.

An episode of Top Gear played in the background whilst my children tried to steal and raid my Singapore noodles. “Go on then” I say loud and proud “sharing is caring as you tell me.”

“Chillllllllllliiiiiiiiiiiii” my elder child shouts as she rushed for the sink. I chuckle to myself … and we both laugh afterwards.

A “messy” nights sleep followed – although according to the ridiculous app I just bought I had over 8 hours deep sleep only waking up once at night. What I mean by this is that it was very disturbed my body quite obviously saying “hello you’ve changed something.”

I awake and I feel a slight sense of trepidation at what lies ahead and I think about ways I can feel strong and build a sense of direction. As expected it feels a little like a day 2 hangover and I’m very dehydrated but because I’m an immediate gratification kind of guy I reach for the coffee. “That’s okay for now” I tell myself “It’s about the first few days being a success.” I also know that I have exacerbated this feeling somewhat by the takeaway and the wonderful natural colouring’s and flavourings it contains … not.

I know in my heart of hearts that truly believing and building into my subconscious that booze has no benefits is at the heart of success along with understanding my “why.”

I’ve joined a group called One Year No Beer as I like what they are about. It’s not a message purely about alcohol but becoming a better self overall – you could call it a more holistic approach if you like. I set an aim in my head of connecting with others (although with some trepidation as I know what I am like at social media).

So “why” am I doing this?

  • Unlock more of my potential – work, home, finances …
  • Improve Health – mental and physical.
  • Find more clarity with my purpose and fulfil more fully my role on this little planet of ours …
  • Find more love and happiness through the above.
  • Connect more with other people to serve them.
  • Be a better father to my children.

That’s probably enough for now but I feel emotionally connected to these and whatever else I know that booze has, will and can stop or significantly slow down these areas.

Today I have resolved to remain calm again, ensure I travel through the evening successfully and navigate if I feel a little edgy and remember that alcohol serves me no benefits – woo hoo – I am free.

Oh and apparently I need to sign up for some kind of challenge at the end of 90 days … mmm what shall I do?

I hope my stories and experiences serve you in some small way.

It’s 730am on Monday morning. I look out of the window to check the weather then reach for my mobile phone to confirm … “yes its cloudy.”

Indeed cloudy just like my head. I take a deep sigh and think to myself what shall we do today as a fly buzzes in the background. I want to make the most of my holiday but I’m so tired I’m not sure I will be able to. A dull nausea feeling tells my mind and my body has had enough yet the schizophrenia that is my habit has allowed this to become the norm.

“The man at the pool yesterday was so fit and healthy looking” I think to myself. “He must be a non-drinker and very health conscious – after all he drank diet Tango” I laugh a little inside.

My wife is already up and completing a 30 minute H.I.T session with Joe Wicks … she too is on fine form health wise.

I have a cracked heal on my right foot – more a nuisance than anything else but I haven’t bothered to sort it out because “what’s the point.” Oh and my left knee which is a little worse for wear from squash and probably most likely all the weight I have been carrying around aches somewhat … I’d like this to clear but I know it won’t until my “seal blubber” goes.

I feel a great sense of guilt, embarrassment in my failure to have previously cracked my habit … trouble is – in my mind it seems impossible … after all I’d tried and failed before so why would now be any different.

I think to myself “today I will make a resolution to have a drink free day” and subconsciously register that this is only half hearted because I have tried before and delivered a negative result.

There’s now a somewhat annoying woman in the background on YouTube with an American accent … “it’s time for some core work” she exclaims. “Sod that” I think , “more like time for a sexist retro American series like the A-Team that’s more my thing.”

I pause and then ponder “I wonder if I will feel funny mid afternoon like I did yesterday … somewhat panicky, like I’m not here and going to disappear from this earth” Actually I haven’t really been here for months anyway in my weather forecast of mind fog.

My family must be sick of my smelly, sweaty body in the morning and I am sick of feeling sick and tired – I reflect.

I flick on my iPad and read some notes from Alan Car on his advice to be freed from alcohol. I think today I will take his advice … and so I do.

My objective for the day is that “today is a good day – despite all my pain, embarrassment, lack of esteem, I will outwardly and inwardly believe that all is well and all I must do is take that first step to not drinking tonight.”

I stretch a little in anticipation and my left toe which has been playing up a little clicks and grinds somewhat. It’s not will power that is needed just an understanding that alcohol serves me in no way – there are no benefits. Even my left toe can tell me alcohol serves me no benefits.

I resolve to enjoy the day, be there for my children, not huff and puff, try to feel good despite the hangover and take the day slowly, calmly and with a sense of purpose.

Today is a good day … I am free.

Here we go …

The first days of any habit change are possibly the trickiest but can also be some of the most rewarding. Why? Because you are working in a different direction to what you have been used to and it can bring a great sense of reward and reset.

We have all  been very quiet here at cracking on with the day today routines of progressing life and enjoying the simple things but one key thing has changed … I have allowed alcohol back in to my life and this has proven to be a big mistake.

I’m not going to dwell on my time from September 2018 until now but rest assured it has not been as good as my time in early 2018 and the progress I made. Most of the positive moves reported on this blog have been undone quite quickly. Don’t get me wrong life is still good and I have moved into a new home, made some great new friends but there’s an underlying drag and tiredness. It’s time to undo this.

Indeed, July is a great month and time to change a habit. The trends like #veganuary and #dryjanuary and #gymmembershipuary have all passed and things seem a little more routine. Plus there are longer days and maybe even some more sunshine.

Whilst I am doing this I am also going to be recording some personal life habits that I now have implemented on a daily basis – and I will share these with you. I have currently got some changes going on at work and at home so we can also record these. Why – because I think they will help you in your first thirty days and you will be able to see how things can progress over the days and month of going free.

Join me on my freedom change day.

I hope my journey will serve you in some small way too.

I’ve been enjoying my holidays and ultimately my return to work.

Not abroad but at home – just relaxing, enjoying family and learning to slow down. During my shortish journey so far I am learning to enjoy the simple things in life and appreciate what I have in the here and now.

My daily routines are important and especially my weekly exercise which keeps my mind and body clear – it’s like undoing several knots in a shoe lace when I go for a run where the knots are my tension. You have to work at them but once they are cleared everything works much better again and it feels great.

I’ve seen art, travelled a canal, laughed a lot with my children, visited family, eaten beautiful food and all on the door step of where I live. I’ve done all of this with a new sense of purpose and presence that I would not have had before.

I really feel in the last few weeks that my efforts have started to pay off – of course for myself – but also for those who I surround myself with from friends, to family, to work colleagues.

I’m more relaxed than I have been (still with a sense of my natural character which is to gradually become wound up) – but I’m more able to identify this and act upon it using various tools.

I care less about things that don’t matter and more about the things that do … it’s all very cleansing (oh dear I’m going all VW camper van again).

Image result for vw camper van flower power

… but it’s true – I will just make sure I don’t over do it and put other people off!

I’ll need to keep an eye on what I call my life arenas (see previous posts) and I do struggle to maintain mindfulness practice on a daily basis – so another area to watch and practice.

I hope this has served you in some small way.




I have been spending some time thinking about what has really helped me so far on this little exciting journey of mine.

I’m not saying I have worked it all out yet but there are definitely some themes coming out which sit under different umbrellas – cue Rihanna ela ela ee.

I’ve been so busy that this post has taken me a number of weeks to write – sorry. Anyway, on with the learns:

(1) Acceptance or more dramatically and “flower-powery” – surrender!

Image result for acceptance

What do I mean by this? There lies in me a fundamental understanding and belief that something had to change for my well-being and those around me. A realisation that whilst I don’t have all the answers there is a way and that small voice that we all have inside us (yes you too – and no I am not loosing the plot) that can steer us in the right direction. It’s the little voice on your shoulder that says – those weren’t very kind words I used to my friend last week – or I should not have eaten that 1 KG chocolate bar! It’s quite clever really. Most times this little voice is really helpful – yes sometimes it tries to mislead us – but in one word I would describe it predominantly as being authentic. Authentic to yourself and not trying to create or build a character that you are not or an image which is not true. I realised this years ago – but it has taken me a little while to act! Alcohol simply doesn’t have a place in my authentic self.

(2) Movement and Breathing

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By movement – I mean any kind of movement. This could be a run, a walk a swim, a game of tennis – anything that increases your heart-rate and gets you sweating. It’s not new science but sometimes what is coming sense is not common practice. In my freedom this movement has been so important in making me feel good about myself and increasing the old dopamine (the brains chemistry that reward us an makes us feel good) – here is a link for a bit more on dopamine –

A good guideline for the amount of exercise per week is 5 x 30 minutes every week – again remember if this sounds a lot it can be achieved in many different ways. Sometimes it’s better when you almost don’t realise you are doing it for example by playing a game of football with your children or taking a brisk walk taking in the scenery.

If you really struggle to move then just changing scenery can help especially if you are feeling demotivated – get close to some nature – it’s proven over and over again to benefit our well being.

(3) Be Calm – and yes Be Mindful

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Yes I am asking you to become a little Buddha like! I have found myself coming out with annoying statements to others like “breath” – which when someone is not conscious of my positive intent with saying such a thing can come across as £$ck&ng annoying – I must learn to be more mindful of my words!

It can seem very strange at first and again a little bit flower power however bare with it and you will be rewarded – little and often everyday. I’m not going to be able to communicate the “how” here efficiently or succinctly but there are far better sites that can do such a job like

Below is a link to some information on mindfulness. To be honest I learn about this everyday and my current focus is to do this more often more consistently but what I do know is is has a place to play in my everyday life.

(4) Learn and Re-programme

Develop yourself through learning and action. I’ve constantly read, absorbed and (mostly) acted upon good advice and experience from others.

I’ve also learned that a lot of my movement forward in well-being is around understanding and recognising that I am have to re-program my automatic thoughts around how I perceive myself, what the true facts are around alcohol and how this impacts my decision making. This also applies to other areas of my life including perceptions on how I look, feel and act.

So develop a routine of learning and become wise about the facts around alcohol. There is so much misinformation out there because of the alcohol industry propaganda and also cultural and social expectations which are warped when you start to be able to see through them.

Just a word of caution though (and I challenge anyone who says they are not guilty of this at some point in their lives) – learning without action gets you nowhere.

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(5) Support

And finally and importantly – support.

There’s no excuses in this day and age to find people who will cheer you on. Whether it is close family, friends or something more recognised like Mind or SMART Recovery.

It doesn’t matter how positive or up for things you are you’ll need somewhere or someone to bounce off when things are tricky or you don’t know the way forward.

I hope this has served you in some small way.


Learn to embrace the struggle for where there is struggle often there is progress. It’s the famous “no pain no gain” saying – slightly reworded!

That’s the place where I have been this last week but it has paid off in my decision making. Sometimes we all have to make decisions that are the right thing to do but feel uncomfortable.

I’ve mentioned this before – a great model that shows this very simply is the comfort zone model. It looks something like this:

Image result for comfort zones

Guess where you should place yourself for progress – yep that’s right in the green zone. This is where we learn the most about ourselves or move something forward and it often involves action.

You’ll find in your alcohol free life that you are doing this more often than not – especially if you are spending time looking at your well being as a whole. For example:

  • you might be improve your health by setting a challenge of couch to 5km or other physical challenge to move yourself forward.
  • you might have to have some tricky conversations with people about how you are changing and what you want to improve.
  • you might have to apologise for things from your past.
  • you might have to push though times of doubt and really sit with the pain or sadness or uncomfortable nature of some of your decisions.

The good news is that on the other side you will feel good about yourself and a sense of reward from you progress however great or small. It is through the progress and self reward that momentum is gained – reinforcing that living an Alcohol Free life is the right thing to do.

So why have I entitled this post ‘shamone’ – it’s simply because in the last week I have had to push myself on and say “‘c’mon’ Sam pull your finger out it’s time for more action!” Sometimes we all need a bit of positive self talk to enable us to move back on our journeys again wherever they might take us.

I hope this has served you in some small way.