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Lessons From Week One Of Sobriety. Idiot.

Well, week one of not drinking is over with. Am I a new man? Hardly. But, there are a few things that this week of excruciating sobriety has taught me.

#1.    Stress is my trigger. Which I pretty much already knew. But to sit back and watch it from a “not giving in” kind of perspective is, to say the least, eye opening. I mean, I already know about my anxiety and other issues related to being uncomfortable socially… but when you always give in, you know that you have a way (an unhealthy way) to cope.

But now, not allowing myself to reach for that coping mechanism has shown me that I’m, pretty much, an idiot… well, ok, kind of. In reality, it’s made me have to deal with this stress and anxiety in other ways. Like imagining people naked. Wait. No. That’s only for when I’m publicly speaking, right? I don’t know, but I’ll figure it out.

#2.    Restaurants need more drinks that are healthy for you. I’m tired of water, I’m getting tired of tea, and I don’t drink pop (we call it pop ‘round these parts).

So what options are out there? If I’m trying to stay away from something that is unhealthy for me, then I sure as shit don’t want to drink something that is loaded with sugar, or carbs, or calories, or whatever else that makes my teeth rot and pants too small. What do sober people drink?????

#3.    This is hard, but do-able. Obviously, this is difficult. While I’m not the type to get shitfaced every time I have a drink, I am the type that likes to drink a couple of drinks with anything that I do. (Except working out. Alcohol and workouts are a horrible mix. Just… trust me.)

So, yes, this is bullshit. I don’t enjoy it. And I want to quit.

But, I’m not going to. Because that is exactly why I’m doing this… to prove that I can, to be faced with a challenge and overcome it.

Oh, and to fit into last year’s jeans.


Want more from Jacob Paul Patchen? Check out his 5 star rated book on Or just click the pic!

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Jacob Paul Patchen

Jacob Paul Patchen is a strong advocate for love, family, and laughter. He is his mother’s favorite child, his grandfather’s ornery double, and the one who offers the blessing before holiday dinner. With his background in poetry and his open heart, he sees the world in a transcendent light. With a deeper understanding of the importance of life’s “little things,” enriched by his time spent at war in Iraq, Jacob offers a philosophical, light-hearted, and insightfully energetic tone to his writing style. 
Jacob is an award-winning writer and poet from Cambridge, Ohio. He was the recipient of the Beulah Brooks Brown Award in Poetry and was selected as the feature writer for Muskingum University’s creative writing magazine, First Circle. Jacob graduated from Muskingum University with a bachelor’s degree in English while focusing on creative writing, journalism, and speech communication. Since graduating, Jacob has written a script for a feature film, started a blog,, (which has made him semi-famous in a small town), and is currently finishing up his debut book called, "Life Lessons from Grandpa and His Chicken Coop: A Playful Journey Through Some Serious Sh*t"
Growing up a few miles outside of a small village in the rolling hills of South East Ohio, Jacob spent most of his youth playing sports, spending time outdoors (i.e. climbing trees and hiding from babysitters), and finding his unique voice in writing. Feeling patriotic, he enlisted into the Marine Corps. Reserves during his senior year of high school. During his six year enlistment in the Infantry, he was deployed to the Al Anbar Province, Iraq in 2005. After his return from Iraq, with a better understanding of life and a renewed appreciation for opportunity, Jacob enrolled into Muskingum University to pursue a formal education in writing.  
He is now living outside of Cambridge, Ohio where he balances part time work with full time play.

4 replies

  1. If you can find places that offer low sugar flavored teas, that can be awesome. I drink water, teas and coffees when I go out. My favorite is lemon honest tea – they refer to it as a “tad sweet”. Just enough sugar to make it tasty. I hate sweet tea because it’s overpowering sweet. Good luck with your quest!

  2. Wishing you the best of luck on your journey to sobriety. I enjoy your blog very much. Take care Jake!
    P.S. Adding small bites of fresh fruit to tea or purchasing Dasani flavor drops will add a little zing to your beverages.

    1. Thank you so much! I appreciate you reading and commenting, it means a lot to me. I will look into the fruit thing, that sounds pretty good. Thank you.

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