MILWAUKEE -- When it comes to relaxing and enjoying the company of friends, many can’t help but reach for a glass of wine. For many women, opening a bottle of wine has become a weekly ritual for book club, happy hour or dinner with friends.
“It’s the culture here,” Meg Daly said.
A culture many are taking a break from. Meg Daly is a personal and career development coach. She helps clients establish goals and finds ways to help them achieve the goals. One common thread she sees in her clients, deals with drinking alcohol.
“One of the goals people focused on a lot was to cut back on drinking. I found myself listening to a lot of people talking about 'I`ve really got to moderate my drinking. I`m not an alcoholic, but I feel like it`s kind of becoming a habit,'” Daly said.
Janine Werner is one of Daly’s clients who decided to take a breather from drinking. After the holidays, she challenged herself to go 30 days without alcohol.
“I felt super, super charged. The treat is waking up and feeling absolutely spot on,” Werner said.
Werner says at first, the challenge was difficult, but each day got easier.
“I started really reading more books, exercising more, getting up earlier, time-blocking my day more. It was all because in my mind, 30 days of not drinking wine," Werner said.
Her results were so impressive, she got her own coach on board. Daly tried a 30-day alcohol-free cleanse. She says the changes opened her mind and freed up her time.
“I`d rather be going out on a walk after work or catching a yoga class,” Daly said.
Daly and Werner took alcohol breaks in order to hit the reset button. The two women are not alcoholics. But for more and more women, alcohol is becoming a big problem.
According to Gallup polls, close to 70 percent of American adults drink alcohol. Though men drink the most, researchers found over the course of a decade women’s binge drinking increased seven times the rate of men.
The drink of choice for many women is wine. According to the Wine Institute, women purchase about 57 percent of wine consumed in the United States.
Researchers are concluding changing social norms may be contributing to women’s alcohol consumption.
Now that Werner and Daly are done with their cleanses, the way they consume alcohol has changed.
“You`re more aware and I feel that, I definitely don`t think about drinking as much,” Daly said.
The two women say it is a personal choice, but encourage anyone thinking about taking a break from booze, to give it a try.
"You`re going to look better, you`re going to weigh less and you`re going to have more energy," Werner said.