Socializing isn’t only margaritas and mimosas, and even though many like to drink when going out, it’s becoming more common to have a busy social life without alcohol.

Many people like to socialize without drinking alcohol either because they recently quit and want to stay sober or because they aren’t a big fan of drinking. Whatever your reasons are, avoiding drinking doesn’t mean you need to stay away from social gatherings and miss out on all fun. This article will guide you to having a social life without alcohol so you can still enjoy going out but stay sober.

Talk With Your Friends

One of the biggest challenges you’ll face when trying to have a social life without drinking is peer pressure. Sometimes friends unintentionally influence your alcohol consumption by saying simple phrases such as “come on, let’s have fun” or offering you your favorite drink.

Friends do want you to have fun, and most commonly, they don’t intend to harm you or disrespect your decisions. Sometimes they don’t know about your problem, or even if you don’t have one, they might not know you want to enjoy a night out without drinking.

The best method to avoid this pressure and avoid drinking is to speak honestly with your friends and let them know about your decision. Maybe you’ll inspire them to cut back on alcohol consumption too! If, for some reason, you think they will not support you in this, try to go out with only sober people or people willing to respect your decision.

Alternative Activities

Although for some people synonymous with going out and drinking, social life isn’t only about that. You can go to a park, meet up with a group of friends to play frisbee, and call it a social life. According to Merriam-Webster dictionary, the term social life means – “person’s time spent doing enjoyable things with others.” So when drinking isn’t something you enjoy, why not try alternative activities? These can be riding your bike with friends, going to a museum, watching a movie, playing a board game, walking, or meeting up for lunch. Sure, your friends, especially if they love drinking, may decide to pair alcohol with any of these, but there’ll be much less pressure than you’d have if you went to a bar or clubbing.

Spend Social Time During Non-Drinking Hours

While there’s technically no such time as non-drinking hours, and your friends could decide to start drinking from early in the morning, usually most drinking happens in the evening and at night. Therefore, if you shift your activities to earlier hours, you’ll decrease the chances of having temptations to drink. Also, studies show that most people, 62.8%, drink alcohol on Friday. Thus, going out on other days of the week will decrease the chances of dealing with drunk friends’ requests for you to join them drinking.

Say No

Regardless of how much prep work you do in terms of telling everyone you quit drinking or don’t want to consume alcohol for whatever reason, people will still invite you for drinks. You cannot prevent others from offering you alcohol, and the key to having active social life without alcohol is to learn how to say no to these offerings.

Even if your friends respect your decision, someone else, even a stranger at a bar, might want to invite you for a drink. Remember, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with not drinking alcohol. You can have as much fun or even more while being sober. Explain to others you don’t drink. If they want to know why, explain your reasons if you wish to, although you don’t have to. Tell them they can invite you for a non-alcoholic beverage, and you can still enjoy each others’ company if you wish.

Shift Your Social Circle and Include People Who Don’t Drink

Having an active social life without drinking alcohol only becomes an issue when surrounded by people who drink. If people around you don’t drink alcohol, then you’d not even have to explain your reasons or prove to them you are having fun without drinking. Still, it doesn’t mean you need to cut off all friends who occasionally enjoy drinking or have beer packs in their fridge. However, shifting your social circle to include those who don’t drink will help you stay away from alcohol. You can do so many activities together, like hiking, cycling, playing games, cooking, shopping, or going on a picnic. An excellent way to find non-drinkers is to meet with non-drinking groups on Meetup.

Have you tried other successful methods of having a social life without alcohol? Please share them with others in the comments below!

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