10 January 2014

Moving forward with my coffee-free resolution.

I am so much better off since having given up coffee...... for good this time. Oddly, I haven't been craving it. Okay, scratch that. I did have a rather nagging craving this morning. I had smelled it and the thought that said, 'I have to have it,' surfaced and repeated itself, nagging me and begging me to go to Wawa. After all, I still have the gift cards. Fortunately, I just accepted the thoughts for what they are...... thoughts, and nothing more. Just because I have the thought that I need coffee, doesn't mean I have to act on it and get coffee. It becomes easier for me when I think of the other options available to satiate my craving for a warm drink, the most useful of which at the moment is chamomile tea and warm water. I do think the fact that I had chocolate chip cookies last night as well as the night before may have prompted the return of the caffeine cravings. Thankfully, they aren't all that overpowering.

For me, the removal of caffeine from my routine has many benefits and they far outweigh the temporary high I get from sipping on a hot cup of coffee.

I am less compulsive and am not spending an excessive amount of time on social media sites. I've only been on facebook two times today and only for a few minutes each time. When caffeine was rummaging through my veins, I had no motivation to get off the site even if I was just looking at the same pictures and there was nothing of interest or of use to me on there.

I am more restful. I can doze off easily and sleep restfully. When I am consuming caffeine, it feels as though I'm on high alert at all times and it's very much a strain to relax and decompress, even when I long for sleep.

My appetite has returned. I'm nourishing myself with healthful foods rather than constantly obsessing over when I have my next fix and focusing on coffee as my primary motivation to get through the day.

I'm calmer than normal. Yes, I'm still anxious and panicky as hell at work. However, outside of work, my sense of calm is much greater than it was before. My thoughts are not racing uncontrollably (on weekends). I can sit still and feel comforted by the silence of my mind.

My stomach is not as disturbed. I feel my digestive system is not as irritable as evidenced by the lack of stomach noises heard throughout the day and at night. It still acts up when I have gluten, but not in the same way as when I consume caffeine.

Thoughts of coffee are becoming less and less prominent and it's not my main priority to consume it anymore upon awakening. When I reflect on how a caffeine free existence will benefit me, I regain strength to persevere with this goal. While I won't beat myself up for a few transgressions like the chocolate chip cookies, I do realize that coffee is the ultimate downfall for me and especially at this stage in the game, since I am only five days out of the gate, it would behoove me to maintain my distance and not 'treat' myself to even a cup at this point, as it could lead to a relapse as far as resuming my habit of having it each day, in increasing quantities. Abstinence is working for me and I think it's the best way for me to beat this habit.

I feel more hydrated and better health-wise, when drinking more water. I have more thirst for water when off coffee. My dry mouth symptoms still linger, but I hope with adequate water intake, this situation will improve.

Other good habits, or at least intentions, are resurfacing. I'm reminded of certain goals I've let fall by the wayside a bit, such as working on my novel, exercising, yoga, and meditation. These are no longer taking a back seat to coffee.

Therefore, I would say, I'm continuing to make headway in terms of quitting my coffee addiction and I'm proud of having made it five days, marked by today. I'm getting closer to the one month point, day by day, and am just taking it one step at a time. Slow and steady wins the race after all, no?

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