How I overcame my coffee addiction.

For the first time since my teenage years this has to be the longest period where I have not consumed coffee.  Exactly 5 weeks, woohoo, well done me.

So I hear you ask “so what?”

Coffee has had so many controversial debates whether it is good or bad, or how much we can consume, and so on.

Anyone who knows me knows I love coffee.

I love the morning ritual of waking up and thinking about the smell of the thing in the jar, I love how it tastes and how I feel after wards.

For over a decade it has helped me wake up and come alive. I also had a very good belief  about my coffee addiction which was “I simply DO Not function without it first thing in the morning”.

Coffee was the drug I needed to feel energized and mid day I will need another hit like a cocaine addict needs their fix.

My SELF BELIEF about coffee was actually causing me more harm than good.

Let me explain.

This soothing hot drink is what powers me to maximize my energy in the gym and give me that little ooomph for life. The thought of not sipping it in the morning used to frighten me. It’s the thing that also made me look like a mad hatter doing 10 things at a 100 miles per hour and not completing one task in the end.

I realized as I was growing up things used to agitate me more and the feeling of nervousness was over taking my life. I put this down to my job as a coach running around constantly looking after clients.

But it was at Anthony Robbins seminar I became aware of my addiction and how it wasn’t so great for me after all. I mean as a Coach I know everything in moderation is good for us and if I drank enough water to the ratio of coffee intake I would be fine. Somehow this wasn’t working for me.

The shift started when I was crewing at the Anthony Robbin’s “Unleash The Power Within” at the end of March 2015. Not only did Tony speak about the elimination of coffee but for those four days I was waking up at 6am there was no COFFEE in the house.

Brilliant.

I had a full on 13 hour day ahead of me and there was no coffee.

On the first day I remember telling myself “I will only have that coffee at 12pm and lets see how I cope in the morning”

Bizarrely enough , I was just as hyper and energetic from the time I woke up till I had that it. So it made me think, If I have been this energetic without the need of a coffee then why do I drink it and rely on it so much and why am I in this state of thinking that if I don’t have a coffee I will not function ?

You know it only went hand in hand with what Anthony Robbins was talking about the whole weekend at the seminar,

1) Our belief system creates habits for us

2)Our thoughts to a situation can create so much good and bad

3) And our perception of things allow us to view things in a positive or a negative way

And so there it was that little voice that said to me “you do not need the coffee you are just as mad without it”

KA-CHING

Boy was I glad to hear that voice and actually experience the full effects of my own natural energy through the next few days without any coffee.  To feel my own energy without any external substance was a huge deal for me.

In the weeks to come, I replaced coffee with hot lemon water and then juiced every morning. I wasn’t tempted to drink coffee and it turned out to be a small challenge to see if I had the discipline and power to not drink the beverage anymore.

Each day to replace the old habit was a triumph for me, each day I realised I wasn’t as weak as I thought I was. Each day I used that to channel my focus and energy in other areas of my life.

I was more energetic than the days I had coffee, I realised I wasn’t as agitated or anxious. It is very rare for me to get those mid day energy slumps now and my workouts are just as hard and intense without the kick start of coffee.

So I realized it was ALL IN MY HEAD. The story I had been telling myself for so many years had finally changed. And this is also the same thing we do when we are faced with certain situations in our lives when it comes to change or uncertainty.

Our story about a situation prevents us from progressing, for example

  • The pointless relationship that does not serve our purpose anymore
  • Going on a healthy lifestyle change
  • Getting that new job
  • Asking someone out on a date
  • Asking for the promotion at work
  • Coming out of our comfort zone

Everything is very scary at first but if we can change our belief system and wire it to something better, we can gain maximum results from a small change to everything in our lives.

My new belief is “I can drink coffee if I want to but right now I choose not to”

And I am now also saving almost £48 per month by not purchasing flat whites and cappuccino’s in the coffee shops.

Holy crap that’s the first time I calculated that. £48 per month? What joy is it to eliminate an expensive addiction to his liquid?

We have to remember that habits can never be eliminated, it stays with us but the good news is that it can be replaced.

Challenge for you:

Find something that you love but could also be preventing you from reaching your goals, for example your love for chocolates or cakes could be stopping you from getting to your desired weight.

In the first week decrease the amount that you consume. If you feel this is making a change and is going well, eliminate this in the following week. If this is too much and you feel unhappy and need the cake or chocolate fix you can try to substitute it for dark chocolate or gluten free rice cakes. Not everyone likes dark chocolate (at first) but try different ones. My ultimate favourite one is Lindt dark chocolate with hazelnuts and I know people who hate dark chocolate but have fallen in love with this one.

Be creative and play around with it like I did for a few weeks with lemon, lime water and even juicing. 

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