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Spotlight: Q&A

with Tom Davies,

Founder of Alcohol Free AF

Tom Davies, founder of the gift box company Alcohol Free AF

answers our questions shedding light on his personal journey,

what made him take the leap into sobriety, his advice on

quitting and what's worked for him.

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1. Give us a little background about you…

My name’s Tom, 28 years old and from London. I’ve worked in software sales for a number of years but recently started Alcohol Free AF.  I’m a Cat Dad to Monty the Ragdoll.

 

2. How far along are you on your sober journey?

 

My last drink was on 8th November 2019

 

3. What made you realise you needed to kick the booze?

 

I’d been on a downward spiral relationship with booze for a number of years before this. There was always a reason to drink and always drunk till blackout. It had started affecting relationships and severely impacting my mental health (even though I didn’t realise it at the time)

 

On the night of the 8th November 2019, I got into a bit of a pickle and I cracked my forehead, blew both eye sockets, broke my nose, broke both cheekbones and cracked 2 teeth… from that point I thought enough was enough and packed it in.

 

4. What’s the worst thing that’s happened to you whilst drunk?

 

Too many to name, the above was properly the worst. I self-harmed pretty badly once with a knife and will always have the scars on my arm. 

 

5. What was the most dangerous situation you found yourself in when intoxicated?

 

At the time you don’t realise you’re in a dangerous situation. I was on the tracks at charring cross station once, luckily people were around to help me up and off them.

 

6. Did you use a specific method or pathway to aid your recovery (i.e 12 steps, AA, rehab)

 

My sister did it with me, which was the biggest ask I could have had. Having someone with who I’m so close but also shared a similar relationship with alcohol do this with me was invaluable. We joined One Year No Beer for a couple of months, but supporting each other and holding each other accountable was the ticket out of booze I needed!

 

7. How do you feel about the term ‘alcoholic’?

 

I just googled the definition of alcoholic.  Turns out I was one….  The term doesn’t bother me, it is what it is. There is definitely a stigma attached to the word though. You automatically think of an old smelly person who doesn’t have a job, but alcoholics come in all forms!

 

8. What’s been the biggest upshot of sobriety for you?

 

Having my time back. I feel like I can now do so many things with my day that I couldn’t do before because I would a) be thinking when my next drink is coming in or b) be drunk .

 

9. What advice do you wish someone had given you when you first quit?

 

Be upfront and honest with friends and family, the ones that can’t get on board with the new you aren’t worth being around. 

 

People will always ask why. Don’t be afraid to say why and own it!

 

Always have chocolate in the house - the sugar cravings are the real deal!


10. What’s the best way to shut down cravings, that works for you?

 

For me, it’s the taste of beer I crave. I normally walk to the shops to buy some AF cans. By the time I’ve mucked around going to the shops and back, I don’t really fancy one but have one just to make sure.  Normally sorts me out!

 

11. What tips would you give with regards to maintaining ongoing sobriety?

 

Have a sober buddy. Even if you never meet them in person and they are on the other side of the world.  Having someone that is going through what you are going through is key. Being able to tell someone a feeling or thought and they get it is really comforting 

 

Be that person newly sober people look up to. Being able to share what worked for you and helping people get through their hard times in the first few days/weeks/months will keep you on track. 

 

If you don’t want to go to a social engagement, you don’t have to.

 

12. What new hobbies/pursuits have you taken up since quitting?

 

I’ve started running again thanks to all this new energy - I’m doing a marathon in April (or not, thanks COVID). I’ve also found reading again. Fiction, self-help and business books -  the lot. I’m part of a business book club and i’m loving it.

 

13. What inspired you to create your business?

 

Whilst trying to work out what being sober means, how to do it, and why to do it, I came across some great support material and AF drinks but nothing that combined both. Alcohol Free AF is here to support every single one of you, whatever path you're on with our range of boxes to get you going or keep you on track.

 

We have an AF pregnancy box coming out this week actually. I have 3 sisters who all have children that helped with ideas for the box so i’m really excited about it!

 

14. What’s your favourite AF drink right now?

 

I’m loving 0% Freixenet at the moment. My partner and I have been doing bubbles brunch (without the hangover!) every weekend in lockdown.

 

15. What’s your favourite guilty pleasure?

 

Biting my toe nails - don’t judge me.

 

16. Which 3 guests would you invite (living or deceased) to an AF dinner party?

 

I’d love to have Kim Cattrall, Joe Wicks and RuPaul round.  Hopefully, Joe will do the cooking!

Tom's awesome alcohol free gift boxes are featured in the Clean Boutique here, or find out more at www.alcoholfreeaf.co.uk

www.facebook.com/alcoholfreeaf

www.instagram.com/alcoholfree_af

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