I can't recall when or why I decided to do it but sometime in January I decided that I would give up beer for the month of February. No it wasn't a Lent related thing. I just decided I was probably drinking too much and for me giving up beer pretty much meant giving up alcohol for the month.
There were just a couple of times when I was out to eat with others and allowed myself a glass or two of red wine. But other than that it really wasn't that hard. When out watching a game or playing cards with friends they'd ask why I was doing it and I'd say, "Just because" then joke that I picked February because it was the shortest month.
I didn't give up anything for March since it's my birthday month and I had a trip planned for Santa Monica and the Pacific Coast Highway with my girlfriend. I wanted my full range of vices available to me. Which was nice.
For April I decided to try and give up porn. I really did try but damn it... Well let's just say I was much more successful giving up other things.
In May I gave up Keno. No problem. And I've only played Keno once since. It is a waste of money and even if you say "I'm just doing it for the entertainment value" it's a losing proposition. Now even the thought of it makes me feel like a loser. (Though I still may have those Professional Keno Player business cards printed up as a joke.)
Coffee was next. My pot of coffee habit in the morning and two large Dunkin coffees for any long drive had long been a staple of my existence. The headaches were tough in the first week and a half and my energy levels dropped for about the same amount of time but I stuck to just one large hot tea in the morning (Irish Breakfast Blend) and by the end of the month of June I wasn't really missing coffee at all. Just like beer - I've gone back to drinking coffee but the amount has been drastically cut down and now any given morning it is 50/50 whether it's coffee or tea in my morning cuppa.
July I gave up betting on sports. Like giving up alcohol in February because it is the shortest month - I justified giving up placing bets because there's only really baseball in July. Both the NBA and NHL are done and football is still a couple months away. No problem. (Giving up sports betting during football season would be different but hey let's not get carried away here.)
For August I plan to give up eating.
Maybe I should clarify. I plan to have two 24-hour fasts on the 2nd and 4th Wednesdays of the month. I hope to make this a permanent habit if possible. I've already started intermittent fasting based upon some of the health based podcasts I've listened to. Now I try to eat only between the hours of 9 AM and 7 PM. Between 7 PM and 9 AM just water. I've already experienced some benefits (lost 6 pounds) and am curious about adding in a couple 24-hour fasts into the regular mix.
Not sure what I'll give up for September yet but I like this giving things up deal. Maybe soon it will be time to go on a add things in kick. Trying to do something for 30-days straight is supposed to be the easiest way to create a lasting habit.
Anyway just thought I'd share. Try giving things up yourself. What do you have to lose?