1. Have a period of abstinence
‘Stop drinking for at least three months to break the habit,’ says Chivers. ‘The longer the break, the easier it is to develop a more moderate approach once you’re ready to drink occasionally.’
2. Wear an elastic band
To alter a pattern of behaviour, wear an elastic band on your wrist. ‘Whenever you feel an urge to do something you’d rather not, flick the band to briefly change your physiology and remind you of your intentions,’ advises Renson.
3. Plan ahead
‘Carefully working out where, when, and with whom you’re going to consume alcohol – and exactly how much – is a crucial part of successfully achieving moderation,’ explains Chivers.
4. Be kind to yourself
If you succumb to a behaviour you’re trying to stop, don’t beat yourself up. ‘You can start your day again at any moment,’ says Renson. ‘Set aside the inner “critical parent” voice and tell yourself you will succeed. This boosts your sense of self-efficacy.’
Read our feature on the secrets of moderation here.