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I tend to have trouble keeping hydrated, and I know I'm not the only one. If it's something you struggle with too, then here... I'd like to share things I've picked up over the years that I find to be helpful, or that seem to help others.
  • If you're at an event... helping others make sure they're eating and drinking enough. There are two ways this can be useful. First is that it uses an aspect of the "mom friend override" (better known in anxiety crowds as the loophole that allows you to do the thing for someone else, even if you're too anxious to do it for yourself) to keep you thinking about food and hydration; while you check, take advantage of that and get something yourself! The second aspect is that people are, in turn, more likely to check on you and ensure you're getting what you need. Seriously, I've had people at conventions shove sandwiches at me and demand I sit down, just because I kept checking on them. And I do admit to them that reminding me to drink is helpful.
  • Carry a bottle around. Take some time to consider how this actually looks for you, though. If you tend to forget it, it might be good to get a fancy, pretty bottle that you'll go out of your way to hang on to. But if you find yourself not wanting to bring it along in case you lose it, then go for something cheap and easy to replace. I'll actually sometimes buy just a cheap bottle of water and keep reusing it until it's too dirty or breaks or I lose it. One thing that helped for awhile was carrying around a whole gallon, because I had so much that I didn't worry about saving it for when I actually felt thirsty, and it was so big and weird that it stood out to both me and others.
  • Play around with sizes. Sometimes, having a big thing of water removes the idea of scarcity and makes you more likely to keep grabbing and drinking at the slightest sign of thirst. Other times, small portions are helpful because they're so easy to finish, there's no intimidation.
  • If you have the money, go out to eat and ask for water, even if you also get something else to drink (although water's free, so...). This makes a whole meal easy to have, it gets you out around people (if you're feeling down, that can actually be very helpful, especially with friends, even if going out sounds like a chore; it usually isn't as bad once you get there), and I've found that I drink a lot more water when I have real meal to go with it, especially at a sit-down place where they just keep refilling your glass. Maybe even challenge yourself a bit - see if you can empty your glass before they get back to refill it!
  • Speaking of challenge, that's a tactic I've recently seen someone using. At one of the food places where I work, there is a woman who states that she hates water. One of her coworkers realized that she's also very competitive, though. So, she issued a challenge: "I bet you can't drink an 8oz cup of water every hour." It has since become a "who can drink more?" challenge, even though the one who actually does like water doesn't really push too hard for the competitive one to easily keep up and for them both to remain healthy.
  • Falling back into my own experiences more... It's helpful to keep a couple bottles around. Keep one at your desk. Keep one by your bed. Keep one other places where you spend a lot of time. This way, you don't have to remember to carry one around, and if you suddenly feel thirsty, you'll have water handy. It's important to keep refilling it whenever it's getting low though, and to wash it periodically (though it won't need to be washed so much if you put only plain water in it).
  • Use a lidded cup instead. I still suggest a bottle by your bed, but I keep a cup near me where I use the computer, lidded (with a straw) to both reduce spills and to keep dust out (I leave it there, almost always with water in it). It's not even a fancy cup, just a cheap plastic thing I have from a time I picked up some food. It might sound silly, but just getting rid of the barrier of having to deal with a cap has increased how much water I drink. It isn't just me, either. I told a coworker who also has trouble drinking enough, and she thought it was brilliant. Because... sometimes it's really hard to argue that the effort to remove the cap is worth it, especially if drinking itself already feels like a chore.
  • Other drinks aren't ideal, but they can still help. Try not to just drink lots of very sugar stuff (too much sugar can cause lots of problems, one of the most immediate being headaches), but don't be afraid of, say, juice if it helps you to drink more. Sometimes, you can water juices down, too; for example, there's a cran-grape juice that I like, but it's actually really strong, so I'll commonly have about a quarter water or so to three quarters juice. Fruit-infused water can also be nice, but it can take getting used to (I used to hate it). Drinks to be cautious with include sodas, koolaid, and anything caffeinated (caffeine is a diuretic; it'll dehydrate you more, as will alcohol). (I used to drink so much koolaid though, and oh lordy the headaches...)
  • Honestly, just start working on it. As your body becomes more accustomed to having better hydration, especially water, it will crave it more, and that craving will make it a little easier (usually) to seek it out. You may have to force yourself to finish a glass starting out, but it'll get easier in time if you keep it up.

Do you have any tips for keeping hydrated you'd like to add, or experience with any of those I listed? Feel free to share!
These are some great tips!
I recently started carrying around a water bottle that holds half a liter of water, and I usually place it in front of me, so whenever I look up from what I’m doing, I remember to drink some water c:
If plain water gets a little "too boring", you can chop up some fruit to put in it, giving it a bit more flavor :) Some of the more popular versions here are berries, lemon and cucumber. you can even buy water bottles with a built-in little "chamber" for fruit, so you can avoid drinking the fruit itself or the seeds that's some times in it.
Novalyyn wrote:
• Honestly, just start working on it. As your body becomes more accustomed to having better hydration, especially water, it will crave it more, and that craving will make it a little easier (usually) to seek it out. You may have to force yourself to finish a glass starting out, but it'll get easier in time if you keep it up.

^ This, 100%.

I absolutely l o v e soda, in particular, Root Beer and Mr. Pibb. I know it's terrible for you and I'm proud to say I've cut down on it for the past few years! I hated water at first but as I got used to it, it actually started becoming delicious. I'll still have myself a Root Beer float or a glass of Pibb when I'm out somewhere on occasion (sometimes a boba tea or a frappucino if I wanna treat myself), but beyond that, it's mostly always water.

Eventually you'll start to crave it and desire it like any other drink!
Zelphyr Topic Starter

@Penholder - Thanks to work, I've learned that lemon/rosemary is pretty great!

@Dream - Indeed! And sometimes, it's specifically cold water I want, but usually, I'm totally happy with room temperature (which is good with the bottle and cup thing).
Dream wrote:
Novalyyn wrote:
• Honestly, just start working on it. As your body becomes more accustomed to having better hydration, especially water, it will crave it more, and that craving will make it a little easier (usually) to seek it out. You may have to force yourself to finish a glass starting out, but it'll get easier in time if you keep it up.

^ This, 100%.

I absolutely l o v e soda, in particular, Root Beer and Mr. Pibb. I know it's terrible for you and I'm proud to say I've cut down on it for the past few years! I hated water at first but as I got used to it, it actually started becoming delicious. I'll still have myself a Root Beer float or a glass of Pibb when I'm out somewhere on occasion (sometimes a boba tea or a frappucino if I wanna treat myself), but beyond that, it's mostly always water.

Eventually you'll start to crave it and desire it like any other drink!

I can weigh in on this too!

I got to a point in which I wanted to start hydrating better and reduce my intake on soda. I have a 27ounce water bottle, almost a full litre, that I carry with me to work and sometimes out and about. I'm very finicky with water because if the PH in the water is off by too much then I tend to get canker sores in my mouth really easily. Filtered water from home tends to be the safest for me and I get the sores far less frequently. I'm going on over a month now without a break out, and I couldn't be happier.

HOWEVER, my point in weighing in is that while I haven't completely stopped drinking soda, I have noticed that I'm starting to actually get bored of it and that my body and my taste buds are craving the water more and more often. I couldn't believe it when I actually reacted to a diet dr. pepper with "eh... that isn't what I want." and I reached for water instead and instantly felt the old satisfaction I used to get with that soda!

The more water I've been drinking the more and more that I remember that I want to take it with me and that I want it far more than soda.

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