What Happened When I Quit Coffee.

Via Kate Evans
on Sep 13, 2015
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I quit coffee because I found myself drinking that first cup of coffee even on days when it didn’t taste very good.

I quit because I like the idea of actually waking up when I open my eyes (not after my first cup of coffee).

I quit because I would get grumpy and anxious if we were traveling and coffee wasn’t readily available first thing in the morning. I didn’t want to be coffee’s bitch.

Over the years, doctors have asked me about my coffee consumption—and told me that coffee creates lumpy breasts. It finally hit me: that can’t be good.

I quit because I noticed that my fingertips smelled smoky, like I’d been puffing cigarettes, after drinking a lot of coffee.

It was clear to me that my body was ready to make the change, so I decided to follow my instincts.

It’s about becoming more mindful about my habits in my life—I’m now asking myself what I really want: compulsion or freedom?


What it was like:

Even though I tapered off by drinking a little less coffee every day, I had a week-long migraine.

It was hell.

And weeks more of vertigo and garden-variety headaches.

It was so bad I wondered if my brain tumor had returned.

So I tested it by sipping some black tea…and the symptoms disappeared.

For about three months, I felt “off.”

And then, suddenly I felt good again—then, better than ever.


What I did to get through: 

The first few days of withdrawal, I stayed in bed a lot, the room darkened.

I listened to guided meditations.

I drank a lot of water and took long showers.

I asked my husband to rub my head and back, which he very kindly did.

I soothed myself with thoughts like this: nothing has gone wrong, it’s good that I’m detoxing, I am doing something kind for myself.


Here’s what’s happening now:

I feel calmer and more patient, less reactive.

I’m saving money.

I’ve discovered I can poop without coffee. In fact, my whole digestive system is happier and more normalized.

My breasts are less sore.

My teeth are whiter.

I’m sleeping better.

Caffeine actually works now. A few times I was at music events where I wanted to stay up and dance late, so I drank a coffee, and it gave me a boost that caffeine hasn’t in a long time.

I discovered I love a cup of peppermint tea in the morning. And a little green tea, now and then.

If I want the taste of coffee, a cup of decaf is a lovely treat.

I’m noticing the space between the desire and the acting upon the desire. It’s a rich space. When I allow myself to sit there, it’s like inhabiting the space between waves, between breaths.


Relephant Bonus:





My Transformation: 30 Days of No Alcohol.




Author: Kate Evans 

Editor: Renee Picard 

Image: martyhadding at Flickr 




About Kate Evans

Kate Evans is the author of Call It Wonder: An Odyssey of Love, Sex, Spirit, and Travel, a memoir about chucking it all to live on the road, having a brain tumor, talking to dead people, and loving both men and women. She is also the author of two novels, a collection of poems, and a book about teaching. She holds a PhD, an MFA, and an honorary degree from life. As an editor, ghostwriter, and writing coach, she loves helping people unleash and shape their stories. She lives half the year in Baja California Sur, Mexico and the other half she’s a gypsy. She’s grateful to be learning that, as Foucault said,“We are freer than we think.” You can connect with her on her website, her blog, on Facebook and via Twitter.


3 Responses to “What Happened When I Quit Coffee.”

  1. anitaozolins says:

    Great read! Strange that just today I have decided to take a break from coffee too! 🙂 Thanks for the share, I hope I don't get a bad headache!! xx

  2. kattacruz says:

    Blessings, Anita! Giving up coffee isn't for wimps…but it's been so worth it to me.

  3. I've tried giving up on coffee more than 10 times this year, but when ever i get into a stressful periode i can't "get into the zone" without my coffee. I've tried replacing it with tea, but without the wishfull effect :-/
    I also want white teeth and a peacefull tummy!