You've probably heard of Dry January by now- the initiative to abstain from alcohol for the entire month of January. The challenge is no walk in the park and requires discipline, changing your habits, and a lot of self-control. But while Dry January can be a struggle for adults, it is arguably even more difficult for university students. College students are surrounded by alcohol; the drug is a huge part of university life and the social scene. So how are college kids supposed to take part in Dry January? We're breaking down our top tips for college students to stay on track and successfully complete the Dry January challenge.
Just like with anything else, it is easier to stick to Dry January when you aren't going it alone. Finding other students to join you will make the challenge easier and more fun. And you may think that no college kid would want to sign up for a month of no booze, but there are actually a decent amount that would. According to a poll run on UNiDAYS, 21% of college students and graduates responded that they are taking part in Dry January. And what's even more shocking, 45% responded that they never drink alcohol. Thus, there are a lot more students living the sober life than you think, and forming a community to support each other will help you stay motivated.
Plan Sober Activities
A great way to be successful during Dry January is to plan activities that don't involve alcohol to keep you busy. There are plenty of things for college kids to do that don't require drinking. You can go dancing, join a new club, or even do something simple like going on a hike. And if you want to take part in the nightlife, there are many substitutes for activities that involve alcohol. For example, instead of doing a bar crawl, gather some friends and do a coffee house crawl or pizza crawl. There are lots of ways to have fun and enjoy yourself on a college campus without being under the influence.
Utilize Social Media
One aspect of the Dry January challenge that makes it fun is documenting your progress on social media. The hashtag #dryjanuary currently has over 471,000 posts on Instagram. Social media can encourage you to keep going by seeing other participants' progress and remind you that you're a part of the collective movement. On social media you'll find motivational quotes from others and be able to see other people's experiences with the challenge. Documenting your Dry January challenge on social platforms is also a great way to hold yourself accountable and reach that finish line.
Get Out of Your Comfort Zone
A final way to approach the Dry January challenge is to think of it as an opportunity to expand yourself and get out of your comfort zone. Like many adults, college kids often use alcohol as a means of easing the tension in social situations or as a coping mechanism. But if you do not have alcohol at your disposal, you will be forced to overcome these challenges on your own. This will allow you to work on yourself and enhance skills like socializing. Dry January isn't just about alcohol but is a way of growing and overcoming things that make you uncomfortable. Once the challenge is over, you can then take your newly developed skills with you into the rest of the year.
Take Home Message
Taking on the Dry January challenge as a college student is no easy feat, but by following these tips, you could make it a whole lot easier. The important thing to remember is that the challenge is a positive thing. Don't think of it as restrictive, view it as a chance to challenge yourself and improve your well-being. Good luck!
Want more advice?
READ THESE NEXT: