As we move out of the holiday season, a lot of us will be making plans to go a little easier on the sauce for a variety of reasons – but all mainly health-related. However, there are plenty more good reasons why addressing drinking too much can have a dramatic and positive impact on your finances. Let’s take a closer look at some of the reasons why your dry January should – possibly – extend to a dry lifestyle.

Spending under the influence

Even the most frugal people in the world can get a little spend-happy once they have had a drink or two. You might think a quick trip to the bar for a couple of beers or glasses of wine is affordable, but 3-4 hours later when you are a little tipsy, you won’t be surprised to find yourself at the counter ordering whisky shots for everyone. And of course, then there’s the inherent feeling of hunger that inevitably arrives on your way home, and pretty much forces you to stop for a bite to eat. Throw in a tip to the bartender, a cab home and, maybe a trip to a casino, and what do you get? Ultimately, an after-work drink or two that should cost $10 or so could end up costing ten times that. And if you are doing this once or twice a month, you don’t need to be a math genius to work out the annual cost.

The financial cost to your health

Drinking too much means you will be less productive at work, and opening the door to being fired or, at the very least, not fulfilling your potential. You will also have more sick days than the average person, which can cost a lot – especially if you work for yourself. And the reality is that if you find yourself getting ill more often, the future for your health is looking a little grim. As we all know – that can ultimately end in enormous medical bills, raises on your health insurance premiums, and all the problems that go along with that. You are also placing yourself into more danger when you drink too much. According to, drunk driving is a leading cause of fatal collisions. And people who are inebriated tend to find themselves in potentially harmful situations – fights or muggings, for example – than those who are not.

Your relationships

Nobody likes to talk about the financial impacts when you – potentially – break up with a partner. But the reality is that they exist, and it is vital to understand them. As any alcoholic specialist will tell you, drinking too much is a big factor when it comes to relationships ending, and the legal process can be exceptionally costly if you are held responsible for the breakdown. Whatever side of the party you are on, the reality is that lawyers will suck up a lot of your savings and leave you both worse off financially – not to mention your kids.

So, perhaps sobriety during January is a great idea, and should be considered for the rest of the year – what are your thoughts?

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