Research-based guidebook promotes happier and healthier drinking––cut back without quitting
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Retrain your brain to drink less and feel better with hypnotherapist Georgia Foster
MELBOURNE, Australia – Increased alcohol consumption in society today is rarely out of the news. Most therapies and therapists offer an all-or-nothing solution—give up completely or give in to the drink. Clinical hypnotherapist Georgia Foster offers a new middle way for drinkers to reduce their alcohol intake in her book, “Drink Less in 7 Days” (Red Door Publishing, 2/1/19).
Georgia Foster is a world-leading therapist, specializing in over-drinking behavior (as well as anxiety, self-esteem and other issues that are correlated with “problem drinking”). Foster wrote “Drink Less in 7 Days” after gathering information from her popular therapy courses in Australia––a country notorious for binge drinking––which have a 95% success rate in helping patients to reduce alcohol consumption. Questionnaires and other interactive materials in the book personalize the reading and learning experience, making it easier for anyone to rewire their brain to accept more balanced drinking habits.
GEORGIA FOSTER is a clinical hypnotherapist & voice dialogue trainer. She qualified with distinction at The London College of Clinical Hypnosis in 1996. She then went on to become one of the college’s senior lecturers before venturing out on her own to build her online products while running her busy London Clinic. Georgia now resides in Melbourne, Australia. She specializes in alcohol reduction, emotional overeating, self-esteem, anxiety, and fertility issues. Her unique and highly successful approach has helped tens of thousands of people learn how to feel better emotionally and physically. To learn more visit www.georgiafoster.com.
Drink Less in 7 Days
Georgia Foster | February 1, 2019 | Red Door Publishing
Format ISBN: 978-1-910453-57-5 | Price: $14.62
In an interview, Georgia Foster can discuss:
- The importance of focusing on our thinking (instead of our drinking) in managing alcohol consumption
- What Voice Dialogue Theory is and how it pertains to the many different reasons people overdrink
- The role an “Inner Critic” plays in our drinking habits
- How some former “problem drinkers” are able to manage drinking without cutting it out completely
- Hypnotherapy and its role in her 7-day drinking program
An Interview with Georgia Foster
Tell us more about the “Inner Critic” and how it impacts our drinking habits.
The Inner Critic is the driver to someone drinking too much. It is the critical and judgmental voice within that makes us feel vulnerable. If someone has a strong Inner Critic they will typically have self esteem and anxiety issues and may use alcohol to suppress their fears about life.
What a lot of drinkers don’t know is that when we drink alcohol the Inner Critic goes away. The critical part of the brain shuts down when we drink, which stimulates relaxation, calm, confidence and a ‘Don’t care anymore’ attitude. Unbeknown to the drinker, they are not drinking for the sake of it, they are drinking to run away from self doubt and fears the Inner Critic stimulates. It’s not the alcohol itself, it’s the emotions the alcohol creates that people get addicted to.
If someone uses alcohol to run away from the Inner Critic, over a period of time this becomes an emotional habit, which is why it is hard for people to reduce their drinking.
Also, if someone has a strong Inner Critic and drinks to suppress it, in the morning when they wake feeling a little hungover, the Inner Critic comes out to play again. The vicious cycle of needing to drink to relieve it’s negativity will stir in the background all day until they drink. This is why reduction can appear to be such a problem.
The goal of my book, “Drink Less In 7 Days,” is to train the brain to reduce Inner Critic time and improve sober coping strategies without needing to drink. When drinkers don’t have that Inner Critic making them feel worried about everything, the domino effect is there isn’t that frenzy to drink quickly or as much. This is an extremely liberating experience and improves general emotional well being straight away!
What role does hypnotherapy play in your program? Can everyone be hypnotized?
Yes, everybody can. It is a natural brain wave experience that we all go into just before we go to sleep and just before we wake. It is a heightened state of around 20 minutes where your mind can create positive emotional changes very quickly — hence why the book gets great results within just 7 days.
Many people ask me what is the difference between meditation and hypnosis. Both these brain wave activities are exactly the same. However, unlike meditation there isn’t an expectation to focus or think of a mantra. This can be difficult for ‘Perfectionists’ who can’t relax enough and find it stressful to try and think of nothing. Whereas hypnosis is more relaxing because there are no expectations on the listener. The digital recordings that come with the book do all the work, so there is no pressure to focus, relax or drift deeply. Although, ironically most people do drift as it is very relaxing.
How did your own relationship with alcohol inform your seven-day plan?
I drink. I am an Australian and Aussie’s are known as big drinkers. I have the odd hangover, I don’t think there is anything wrong with that. The purpose of the book is for drinkers to reduce their regular habitual drinking that they know inhibits their emotional wellbeing. I encourage people to have at least two Alcohol-Free Days per week, so they can gain sober confidence in all areas of their lives. I used to drink because I was socially shy and felt less than everyone else. I had a lot of self-esteem issues and this reflected in me not feeling confident without a glass of wine in my hand.
What is the difference between what you identify as an “emotional drinker” and an alcoholic? Can your approach be used for both issues?
It is a very common and good question to ask. The answer is slightly blurred, as hard liner AA types will probably disagree with me, so I do apologise in advance! An emotional drinker is someone who is aware their drinking interferes with their lives from time to time but it doesn’t affect their general life and wellbeing. They are very aware that alcohol can be a reflex action to challenges and stressful times but it does not destroy family life and work life. Whereas an alcoholic is someone who once they have one drink can’t stop to the detriment of family, friends and their professional life. They drink to complete oblivion each time they drink. There are many doctors who suggest there is the ‘alcoholic gene’ some people inherit. I believe it’s an emotional gene. We can without consciously knowing it, mimic our parents behaviours both positive and negative.
Do you think some people need to quit and not cut back?
There are many people who have decided to quit drinking completely. These types of drinkers I call them the “All or nothing drinker!” They can’t just have a few drinks. They abstain completely because they can’t trust themselves with alcohol. They are highly anxious drinkers and tend to be the Perfectionist drinking personality that I cover in the book. I might add, I am not suggesting people who have quit should start drinking again. This book is for those who would like to drink less and resonate with my approach.
How do you measure the success of your program? Is there a drinking-reduction percentage you aim for with your clients?
The goal of “Drink Less In 7 Days” is to reduce alcohol consumption by up to 50%. For some people that will be half a bottle of wine, for others it will be 4 beers. I don’t set rules. I want drinkers to achieve success so I don’t talk about the standard glass measurement, as this freaks a lot of people out. Most worried drinkers drink more than the recommended amount.
My suggestion is drinkers should hydrate with water while they drink alcohol, I call this DOWO, drink one, water one. This will naturally slow down drinking whilst making sure they try to eat whilst consuming alcohol, which will also help to drink slowly too. This is all part of the hypnosis training which is great, as people just notice they are calmer before they drink, so they drink more slowly and enjoy hydrating themselves with water.
What do you recommend for people who find themselves part of a “drinking culture” that seems inescapable––whether with family, friends, co-workers or geographic location?
The Pleaser personality trait can tend to drink to please others, even when they don’t want to drink. It could be a boring social situation that can stimulate the desire to drink too much or it could be family issues and drinking seems to alleviate the stress of it. I know a lot of people in the workforce sometimes feel they need to drink to keep their boss happy or feel like they belong. The truth is that people who try and encourage people drink, have their ‘own’ drink issues and will attempt to hide this by making other people feel guilty if they don’t drink with them.
Here are some top tips to help in these situations:
1. Decide before you go out how much you are going to drink over the hours you are there and stick to it.
2. Finish each drink before you have a top up so you can gauge how much you are drinking.
3. Opt out of all cocktails and punches. They can be lethal and hard to tell how much alcohol is in them.
4. Do not be coerced into drinking to please others. Tell little white lies if you need to. Such as: feign you are taking antibiotics or just a little under the weather. Even better, tell people you have a ‘cracking hangover’ and couldn’t fathom a drink!
5. DOWO Policy. Drink one, water one. Alternate between alcohol and water, to keep you hydrated, as mentioned above.
6. Drink from your non-dominant hand. It will seem a little uncomfortable, so it will make you more aware of how much you are drinking.
7. Drink a big glass of water before you start drinking, to hydrate yourself.
8. If you are shy or bored, instead of reaching for the alcohol to calm you down or entertain you, simply listen to one of the 5 minute recordings that come with the book for this exact situation to shift your thinking into a calmer and happier space.
9. Keep an emotional diary over a few weeks to understand what are the drivers to drinking in unhelpful ways are; such as boredom, loneliness, tiredness, fear and anger. Look at other ways of processing these feelings without transferring them to alcohol.
10. See wedding, birthday celebrations etc as a time when we all tend to drink more than normal and that is okay, so be kind to yourself and realise it’s just the situation!