How to have a Happier Happy Hour…and one that you’ll remember!

Everyday drinking is like smoking cigarettes used to be – kinda cool – now it’s just stupid.   

Maybe it’s living in CA – but when I see somebody smoking a cigarette (who’s NOT in a casino) I just think, hmmm…. that’s unusual. 

What’s really unusual is that nobody thinks anything if you drink everyday.

If you’ve been noticing that your Happy Hour “has lost it’s Happy” – this post is for you!

Drinking is the focus

When did we decide it was the “norm” to drink at every single social occasion (1 year old birthday parties (really), Easter, baby showers (Mom-to-be can’t drink?) – to actually make drinking the focus?  

Kind of takes the “SPECIAL” out of “Special Occasion


“Meet for drinks on Tuesday?”- sure, sounds fun!  What’s the occasion? –

“oh, nothing it’s just T-U-E-S-D-A-Y …..regular ole’ Tuesday”

You can find any reason or day to celebrate by drinking.
You can find any reason – or day – to celebrate by drinking!

Day persona vs. Night persona

You’re tired of trying to eat right & getting those workouts in – only to destroy all your efforts by over-drinking and over-eating at “mandatory” happy hours. 

You realize that the more you drink, the more you drink, the more you drink (not a typo)….

It’s like you have a day persona and a night persona – when it comes to health, mindset, habits and goals.

Why wait for “dry January” – DRY actually rhymes with July!  Make it a DRY JULY! Or Dry October – really doesn’t matter when – just commit to this challenge.

Try something different

OK – so the Immediate goal is to get a few days/nights/social occasions under your belt.

That way you can experience how incredible it FEELS to have the POWER to CONTROL if & when you drink. 

Also – it’ll let you get over that nagging worry that maybe you can’t stop for 30 days. (spoiler alert…you totally can)

I’m SO excited for you!

Scientific way to change habits 

In order to change any HABIT –

You need to CONSCIOUSLY make NEW choices  (i.e. THINK about what you’re doing and why you’re doing it) 

–  so that you can redirect the SUBCONSCIOUS (mindless/automatic) choices you’re used to making.

Cut back how much you drink or take a break altogether

Scenario #1:  

You’re just looking to cut back:  

Switch up your “USUAL” (you always drink Chardonnay or Vodka/tonic or a Cosmo)  – cocktail of choice

To anything else that is “UNUSUAL”  – order RED wine or Whiskey/ginger – this unfamiliar taste should cause you to nurse or sip your drink rather than gulp it and drink mindlessly….(sounds a little crazy but hey it’s a start) … ever tasted a Riesling wine – yuck – PASS big-time.

**BONUS:  (you’ll no longer pout because “the wine glass isn’t big enough” – are you SURE that’s a 4 oz. pour?)  true story and no my french fries were never hot enough either!

are you sure that’s a 4 oz. pour?

Scenario #2 (best option):  

You’re goal is to not drink at all: for now (I double dare you)

The list below is NOT meant to be an overall “healthy” alternative list – (but ALL are better options than drinking to excess). 

Don’t freak out if you need to initially satisfy the “weaning off” period with a little added sugar – do it.

The list below will prepare you with a game-plan for both the “bar-scene” – and for celebrating(?) at home.

Drinking is completely your choice

The fact that you’ve chosen to NOT drink – even if temporarily – is between you and you.  You don’t have to hide or try and trick anyone.  It’s just easier if everything seems “normal.”  

These concoctions should also ward off those inevitable “Wow, why you aren’t drinking!?“ questions ~ as nobody will even know your drink has no poison alcohol except you, your brain and your gut. (You’re Welcome)   

Do your friends question you (OMG what’s wrong?!) if you stop eating sugar or quit smoking? 

Hit list of mocktails:

OK – here we go:

  • Easiest option – that you can find anywhere – is Club Soda with lime. V-E-R-Y refreshing – put lots of fresh lemon & limes so it’s healthy for your body.  (nobody will even realize there’s no Vodka in it) 
  • Club soda w/a splash of bitters & slice of lime is also a bar staple – and a NICE alternative.  The splash of bitters makes it look like you’re having a cocktail and is more satisfying than the first option. BONUS: bitters actually eases digestion and supports liver function!
Club Soda w/bitters & lime - ZERO alcohol.
That’s my “club soda with bitters & lime” on the right!
  • I LOVE mixing SF (sugar-free) energy drinks (Monster is my fav. but most bars will at least have Red Bull) with Club Soda and lime.  I order it in a stemmed glass and mix it myself.
  • Good ole Arnold Palmer.  This perfect mocktail is a mix of Iced tea and lemonade – simple and refreshing.  Could pass for a variety of cocktails.

At home options:

  • If fruity cocktails are your thing – start with one of the sweetened, or unsweetened, flavor-infused sparkling waters and mix with club soda or an energy drink (or not) and a big slice of lemon or lime.  (tip – everything tastes better served “up” in a martini glass or big wine glass).  The flavor options are endless…(coconut pineapple is my current fav).  (LaCroix, Sparkling Ice, Bai, Bai Bubbles, Bubly) 
So many mixing options – clean, fruity, sparkling…..
  • Heineken makes a ZERO alcohol beer tastes that looks, smells and tastes exactly like Heineken (with only 69 calories).   (I’ve asked for this at several bars and apparently it’s made to drink at home!?) :((
  • AMAZON now offers a NON- Alcoholic 12-beer variety pack!  NA Beer variety pack. A little pricey but it’s a great way to sample a bunch then zero in on your favorite – to find cheaper locally.

Non-alcoholic options for simplicity

The list shows you how simple it is to enjoy NA drinks – ones that don’t require muddling, simple syrup or 10-ingredients!  

There’s also no special trips to exotic stores to track down unique ingredients (did somebody say Lychee fruit) – stay tuned for that recipe.

The majority of these alternatives are all available at Costco, BevMo, your regular grocery store and the gold-standard: Amazon.  

Create your own alcohol free recipes

Keep mixing until you find that perfect blend of bubbly, sweet or flavorful.

I’m sure I’ve said it before but NO temporary buzz is worth the bloat (face, gut),  regret, and damaged health that excessive drinking brings. 

With just a little planning – you can put the HAPPY back in your Happy hour – and remember every little detail!

work on YOU for YOU
nobody else is going to do it for you –

How will YOU celebrate at the next Happy Hour, Birthday Party, Tuesday?