As people’s work and social lives have become busier than ever over the past decade (with the exception of the pandemic over the past year), ‘me-time has grown in prominence as a way to temporarily switch off from everything. Hollywood star Jennifer Aniston said “me time” can look like anything as long as it “allows you to shut out all the noise of the world that exists today.”
For many Americans, however, ‘me-time has morphed from a holistic thing to do, to one which involves alcohol, such as sipping on a glass of wine in the bathtub while reading a book.
While health experts encourage taking time out for self-care, particularly as levels of stress and depression have sharply increased since the start of the pandemic, they also caution that ‘me time’ activities involving alcohol help to mask underlying issues such as dependence or addiction to alcohol. Detox.net, an online resource for finding drug and alcohol addiction detox centers, carried out a survey of 3,000 Americans, which has shone a light on America’s unhealthy new meaning of the ‘me time’ routine. The survey found that almost 1 in 3 (32%)fill their ‘me time’ by filling up their glasses. And it appears men associated this time with drinking more so than women, with 35% of men saying they drank during their ‘me time, as compared to 30%of women.
When broken down by state, it was found that 49% of Marylanders drink during their ‘me-time – above the national average. This figure was found to be highest in Wisconsin, where 53% of people said they drink during this time; a stark difference compared to just 9%of Utah residents who seem to enjoy sober self-care time more.
Some people enjoy being out and around people while drinking, associating the activity with healthy socializing. However, others may enjoy the relaxation that comes with a few cocktails or beers, preferring to stay in and enjoy time at home in order to enjoy their free time. However,1 in 10 respondents also admitted when they drink on their own, they sometimes question whether they might have an alcohol problem.
While in moderation, drinking alone may not seem particularly worrisome, but issues may arise if this becomes a frequent habit. For example, it may be easier to binge drink when there’s no one else around to monitor your alcohol intake. With alcohol linked to more cancers than previously thought, it’s concerning that nearly half (44%) of respondents classify it as an act of self-care to drink on their own during ‘me time.
When asked how much they tend to drink during ‘me time’, the average respondent said they have around 1.5 drinks; and the most common type of alcohol consumed during ‘me time’ was found to be beer (42%), followed by wine (23%), spirits (17%), cocktails (17%) and wine coolers (1%).