What are some alternatives to alcohol?
Hi there, thanks so much for your question—it's a good one.
There are lots of alternatives to alcohol—in fact they are limitless. So if you are looking for things you can do that don't involve drinking alcohol, it really depends on what you are interested in. If you are not sure, it's probably good to try a few different things and that way you will find something that you like that suits you and fits in with your life.
You are on the right track as far as excercise—that's a perfect alternative. Excercise can help you to feel good and achieve your goals. You could take a class with a friend, go for a bike ride, do yoga, walk or swim by yourself to clear your mind. Or you could join a local club and play a team sport and maybe make some new friends at the same time.
Getting a part time or casual job can also help you save up for things you might really want and give you more options in terms of how you spend your free time.
There are plenty of other things you can do too, such as join a club at school or in your community, take up an art class, go to the beach, volunteer for a cause, etc.
As far as alternatives to alcoholic drinks (sometimes called mocktails), you could have a look on the internet. Some people like to drink cranberry juice and lemonade, pineapple juice and coconut water or something like lemon lime and bitters, but possibilities are endless! You could even invent your own signature drink.
I guess the main thing is to keep busy, hang out with like-minded friends, and remember that you don't need alcohol. There are so many great ways to fill in your free time that can help you feel great about yourself and add to your life. Well done for looking for ways other than drinking alcohol to spend your free time.
If think you have a problem with alcohol or need help thinking about ideas for how to spend your time or say no to a drink, you could try talking to a counsellor. Kids Helpline is a good place to start (details below). They can talk to you over the phone or refer you to someone in your area.
All the best!