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Are you ready to change?


Making a change starts with thinking about it.

Before they take action, people usually move from not wanting to change, to thinking about change and then planning for change. 

How do you feel about change?

I feel I’m ready to make a change

It’s great news that you want to make a positive change. Read some advice on making a plan and getting support, to give yourself the best chance of success.

I do want to change but I don’t feel ready

It can take a while to get into a place where you are ready to make a change. 

  • Think about what’s making it hard for you and see if you can find a solution. 
  • Understand how change happens. You have started a process of change. Learn about the stages of change and how you can move forwards.
  • Don’t get discouraged. Spend more time preparing. Learn about dependence and how people come through this problem.
  • Understand your reasons to keep drinking and the benefits of changing. 
  • Try to avoid increasing the amount you drink. See some tips
  • Find out about support and treatment options, so you know where to go if you decide you do want to change.

I don’t want to change my drinking at the moment

  • No one but you can make the decision to change. You may be ready in the future.
  • If drink is causing problems in your life, stay aware of them and keep thinking about change.  
  • Try to avoid letting the amount you drink increase. See some tips.

What’s making it hard for you to decide to change?

  • I don’t think I can give it up
  • I drank all my life. No point in stopping now
  • I can’t imagine my life without it – I need it to relax and unwind
  • All my friends drink - I’d be bored and alone if I didn’t drink
  • My life’s a mess, what’s the point?
  • I will stop but not yet

You can overcome these barriers, if it’s important to you to change

  • Many people, even people who have drunk heavily all their lives, have successfully changed their drinking pattern.
  • People who beat alcohol dependence are often amazed at how well they feel, and wish they’d done it sooner.
  • There’s life beyond alcohol.
  • True friends will support you in your decision if they understand why you’re doing it.
  • Professional support can help if you find it hard to make a change.


Why it’s better not to wait

It’s never too late to change, but the sooner you stop the better.

  • The longer you carry on drinking heavily, the harder it becomes to control.
  • Problems from alcohol tend to get worse, not better. This includes physical and mental health problems, relationship difficulties and effects on your finances or career. 
  • You’re more likely to suffer physical dependence (withdrawal) symptoms like shaking hands.


Change is a process that starts with thinking about change.

If you are reading this webpage you have taken the first step.

Read more:

The stages of change: How change happens and how you can move forwards.

How is alcohol affecting your life? What does alcohol do for you, and what problems does it cause?

Change or stay the same? Thinking about the advantages of changing versus staying the same.

Dependence. How it develops, warning signs and accepting the problem.

If you feel you're ready, the next step is to prepare for change...Read more

Photo credits
Photo 1 by Richard_b at
Photo 2 by nazka2002 at

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