Change is hard. But it helps to think about it as a process with many “steps” along the way. Plans for change are about the journey, not the destination. A runner is not ready for a marathon overnight. So let's think about the steps which can help increase your chances of success.

By reading this, you'll understand the first steps to create a plan to change your relationship with alcohol. But these strategies can be used for any type of habit change.

You already recognize that you want to make a change. Now what? Here are some tips to follow to help you create a plan that works for you. Other articles will break these steps down even more.

Step 1: Create Your Goals

Goals come in all shapes and sizes. You may have a goal of stopping the use of alcohol completely, or you may want to reduce your drinking by 1-2 drinks a week. Or maybe you want to switch from liquor to beer when you choose to drink.

Whatever your personal goal is, start by writing it down. Keep it somewhere you can see it and recognize that it might take time to get there.

You may update your goal as you work through Confidant's program, or with your coach or counselor. That's okay!

Step 2: Identify Your Support System

You don’t have to do this alone. It is okay to reach out for that helping hand when you need assistance!

Identify a circle of friends, family, and/or professionals that can provide helpful support and feedback as you work towards change.

People need people, and the more you connect, the more confident you will feel in your change process.

Sometimes the fear of asking for help overrides our ability to reach out for support. But you might be surprised how encouraging those around you can be.

Step 3: Create Your Trigger Journal 

What is a trigger journal? This type of journal helps you to identify and write down situations, people, places, and/or things that may make it more likely for you to drink alcohol in a way that is not in line with your goal.

Once you have those triggers written down, you can begin to write down activities that you can do to help support your goal to reduce your alcohol use.

Much like the runner, the more you train for and practice these new activities, the stronger you will feel when triggers happen.

Step 4: Continue Adjusting

You have started down this path because your current habits are not working for you, and you have decided it is time to make a change. There may be some strategies you try that work better than others.

As you go forward, continue to adjust your plan based on what works for you. No two people are the same, and research shows some strategies work better for some people. That's why we will give you many things to try and help you to customize your approach.