Okay, I have a confession to make. I am a recovering coffee-holic. I know, sadness at that statement yet empowerment at the thought I was able to break my habit. Everyone has a weakness, and mine was my daily triple-shot latte or morning, afternoon, sometimes evening (eek?) coffee intake. I’m sure many of you are in the boat I was in as studies have revealed 64% of Americans, on average, consume approximately 2.7 cups of joe on the daily. With those numbers on my side, I’m here to reassure all of you, there’s a way out from the bottomless mug of loveliness, and that if I could quit coffee, guaranteed you can, too, with my steps.
First, I’d love to go over why on earth you’d even indulge the thought of saying “Hasta La Vista, Coffee!” at all. Yes, media has an ongoing fight about coffee’s benefits, but those studies usually apply to the moderate/well-behaved consumer–not me, not you. In fact, coffee does several negative things to our bodies when taken in excess. Some are the following:
Sure, restlessness is a positive thing the day before a major holiday or event, but to just happen while working or attempting to relax? Eh, not so much. Coffee affects the nervous system, and, as an immediate result, you can notice the tendency to not. sit. still.
One side effect of drinking too much coffee is what is commonly referred to as “coffee jitters.” No, this isn’t a cute thing. Here’s a personal example: Mid-presentation in my final semester at college my hands started to shake pretty noticeably, and it affected my speech. Being a goof ball, I played it off well and said, “Oh, check out my coffee jitters.” Yet, on the inside, I knew my coffee jitters were a sign of too much coffee.
It’s no secret that coffee is a stimulant–yes people, a drug!–and, as a result, coffee impacts your nervous system greatly. Coffee consumption, in turn, causes that flight or fight response in your body to get going and can cause some major anxiety from nervousness/moodiness. No bueno.
So, now that you have a feel for the impact coffee has on your body, let me get down to how I cut it out of my life and how you can, too. (This way we never experience the above again!).
Step 1: Start Slow!
When it comes to quitting coffee, it’s like an art. No joke. You should make sure to wean yourself off of the magic potion slowly before you say goodbye for good. My suggestion is to avoid waking up one day up and saying, “I’m done with this for good” since I guarantee the following week you will be ordering your usual at the cafe up the block. (Guilty of this, firsthand).
Step 2: Tea Time!
So, you’ve told yourself you’ll start slow, now what? Well, the way I did was I began to slowly incorporate tea into my morning routine rather than my usual lattes. I changed my ordering pattern so that Monday/Wednesday/Friday were my coffee-designated days and Tuesday/Thursday/Weekends were my tea slots. As time wore on, I gradually put coffee on the back-burner and ordered tea more days. This helped significantly curve the need for my usual order of coffee (in whatever form) and my body became used to not having the cup of joe.
Being a tea person is fun!
Step 3: Dance Because You’re Free!
As a result of ridding coffee from my diet, I no longer have that die-hard urge to run to the cafe mid-day and get my fix on. In fact, I used to get these ridiculously horrible headaches when I didn’t drink coffee first thing in the morning–not even one or two Advils did the trick. Since I’ve been coffee-free, I’ve been more productive at work, less likely to need to leave on a break, and overall, I haven’t had a crash around 2 pm as I previously did.
Trust me, if I could do it, I have full faith you can, too. Besides, tea is way more fun–there are so many flavors to choose from!
Have you ever tried cutting back on your java consumption?
Also by Alivia: 3 Ways to Make Your Morning Commute More Enjoyable
Related: Can Coffee Worsen Acne?
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