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One year without alcohol – here’s what happened

By - Richard - 15th November 2021

One year without alcohol. Here’s what happened.

A year ago I went out for a nice romantic dinner with my wife. Over dinner we shared a nice bottle of red wine. That night I went to bed, but I couldn’t sleep. I lay there looking up at the ceiling. My thoughts were racing. A huge storm of thoughts passed through my mind, mostly negative. And I then I noticed my breathing. I was struggling to catch my breath. I could feel my heart pounding through my chest and my heartbeat was abnormally high. The room started spinning and I had no idea what was going on. I staggered to the bathroom and by this point I was afraid. I didn’t realise it, but I was experiencing my first ever panic attack.

The anxiety passed, but I didn’t sleep much that night. In that moment, I made the decision to stop drinking alcohol.

I’d only had half a bottle of wine, so I didn’t wake up with a hangover, but I knew in that moment, that alcohol was one of the main contributing factors to the anxiety I had experienced.

So there’s no story of me hitting rock bottom after four days of debauchery and then checking in to rehab. It’s far more tame than that. Half a bottle of wine one evening over a romantic dinner was enough to convince me that alcohol was something I needed to live without.

This video tells the story of my first year without alcohol – the highs, the lows, what I have learnt and how my life has changed for the better.

The idea for quitting alcohol had been planted in my mind a year before I decided to quit. I had come across a series of inspirational individuals who had transformed their lives after they quit drinking. I had the privilege of making a handful of testimonial videos for the organisation One Year No Beer who help people change their relationship with alcohol. Being exposed to these people, and helping then tell their stories had a big impact on me.

Whilst I had never been a problem drinker, hearing first hand about how significant these peoples’ lives had become since they stopped drinking was something that was hugely inspiring.

About the Author

Richard Nicholls - Managing Director

Before launching Swift Films, Richard worked as a broadcast TV director and editor, working on programmes for the BBC, ITV and Sky.

A multi-skilled and technically-minded filmmaker, Richard is equally at home coming up with creative concepts as he is on location filming or pulling footage together in the edit suite.

Richard is a member of Independent Producers Scotland and has a love of cats, football, chocolate and Film Noir (in that order).