As COVID-19 spreads around the world and has been declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO), we have entered unexpected times when we are all of a sudden exposed to a completely unforseen situation, in which conditions change rapidly, and our lives have to be re-organized.

The order of the day is physical distancing and social solidarity to give the healthcare systems and the heroic health workforce a fighting chance to save lives and help heal people in this pandemic. These measures mean keeping people further and further from each other. These measures test us and our societies. Our systems are being put to the proof and every persons’ solidarity is to be demonstrated.

Everyone is affected – every person, family, community and society. The most vulnerable are at greater risk than the more privileged ones and will, inevitably, be affected disproportionately.

And so, the role that each of us and we together as a movement can play in the coming weeks and months also matters. Together, we can make a real difference. And everything starts with being there for one another, in our spirit of solidarity, that is core of our DNA.

In this spirit, Movendi International will step up and do what we can do as global umbrella. We have devised four concrete measures – our physical distancing and self-isolation coping kit.

It’s all about providing an open space and platform for the potential that is among our members and contribute with our part to ease the current situation.

From this week forward, we are committing to the following solutions.

Support for virtual meetings

If you would like to organize online meetings for your members and you do not have any good electronic platform for that purpose, feel invited to let us know and we will make our virtual meeting platform freely available for you.

For instance, we have managed our most recent Extraordinary World Congress through this platform. Therefore, we believe it can work very well for other kinds of meetings you, our members, would like to organize and facilitate.

We are of course ready to assist you and introduce you to the system.

Please feel free to express your interest by sending an email to our administration officer Aleksandra:

  • aleksandra.ruminska [at] with the subject line “We would like to use your zoom platform”.

Interactive online gatherings

In addition, we will be also happy to share with our members access to Mentimeter – an online poll/presentation tool that would allow you to facilitate more interactive virtual meetings.

Please feel free to express your interest by sending an email to our administration officer Aleksandra:

  • aleksandra.ruminska [at] with the subject line “We would like to use Mentimeter for our online meetings”.

More content and online discussions

We will intensify the production of more content and the hosting of our own virtual meetings.

As you know, every month, we hold a webinar. That will continue. And in addition to that, we are now opening for weekly virtual gatherings on a number of topics, for our members to join:

  1. Talk about alcohol policy worldwide. Discussions about the latest (weekly) alcohol policy updates from around the world with Maik on Fridays at noon (UTC), starting this week. Join here!
  2. Hang out with Kristina. Sober Inspiration talks with Kristina on Saturdays at noon (UTC). Join here!
  3. Wellbeing Wednesday. Join our virtual conversation to talk about mental and physical health and wellbeing, sharing tips and discussing various podcasts and articles (the list of inspiring podcasts and articles will be made available) at noon (UTC). Join here!
  4. Study circle about Big Alcohol. Online study circle starting with reading and discussing the book “Heineken in Africa”. We will share the book with you if you do not have it and cannot afford to buy it. This study circle commences Tuesday next week with a simple kick-off meeting at noon UTC. Sign up here!

These are virtual meetings that serve to create community, come together and provide space to discuss, share and get into depth of a number of different topics.

We will of course continue with and step up further our work with content productions, sharing lots of stories and updates through our Worldwide Alcohol Policy Newsletters that provides carefully curated alcohol policy news, science digest, members highlight, big alcohol watch and opinions of our members. Here is the latest one.

Feel free to check out our awesome blog portal with lots of interesting articles, our alcohol policy newsfeed for daily updates, our members highlights, and our science hub for the latest studies and scientific advancements in the fields of alcohol harm and policy.

Spotlight on you!

We want to listen to you, give you space for sharing your good practices or questions and bring together others who can benefit from or contribute to your reflections and thoughts, solutions and habits.

Should we start a physical activity challenge for Movendi members? How to remain positive? What are the things you focus on? All these and more questions are circulating and YOU might have an inspiring answer that helps others.

Share your questions, ideas, and inputs here!

We will follow up with concrete online sessions.

Wellbeing resources

The Best Nine for a healthy way of life

Beyond alcohol as obstacle to health, well-being and development, there is vast space for all of us to practice habits and behaviors that enhance and promote physical, mental, and spiritual health and help us reach our full potential.

Health and wellbeing are not solitary endeavors. Instead, by joining with others, learning from, supporting and rooting for others we can maximize our own and our communities welfare.

That is the entire purpose of Movendi’s unique “best nine for a healthy way of life”.

HEALTHY HABITS – including thoughts and behavior

  1. Good Life Project: “Charles Duhigg: The Power of Habit [Best of]”
  2. Being Well: “Dealing with the Mind
  3. New Dimensions Radio: “Effective Questions To Change Negative Habits Of The Mind
  4. Being Well: “The Foundation of Mindfulness

JOY – Laughter and lightheartedness

  1. Good Life Project: “Doing The Work and Awakening to Joy
  2. Being Well: “Take the Time to Enjoy Life
  3. New Dimensions Radio: “The Doorway To Being Present To Life
  4. Being Well: “How to Be Happy for Other People

CONNECTION – creating community and finding your tribe

  1. Good Life Project: “In It Together: Nobody Opts Out of the Human Condition”
  2. New Dimensions Radio: “Developing our ‘Superpower” of Connecting with Others’
  3. The Good Life Project: “Radha Agrawal: How to Find Your People and Start a Movement”
  4. Being Well: “Widening The Circle Of Us

ADVENTURE – exploring the world beyond your comfort zone

  1. Good Life Project: “Living a Life of Intention and Adventure
  2. Good Life Project: “Living a Life of Adventure and Impact
  3. Good Life Project: “Elizabeth Gilbert: Curiosity and the Passion Fallacy”
  4. Good Life Project: “Choosing Courage Over Comfort

HONESTY – being true yourself and sincere with others around you

  1. Being Well: “Managing Your Inner Critic
  2. New Dimensions Radio: “Rebooting Our Innate Brilliance
  3. Being Well: “Become Kinder and More Compassionate
  4. Good Life Project: “Annoyed or Blessed? It’s a Matter of Choice”

THANKFULNESS – practicing gratefulness for people, moments and coincidences

  1. Being Well: “Why Gratitude Is a Gift to Yourself
  2. Being Well: “Gratitude with Gretchen Rubin”
  3. Being Well: “Self-Compassion Practice”

ACTIVISM – starting or joining a cause bigger than you

  1. Good Life Project: “Simon Sinek: Serve Those Who Serve Others [Best of]”
  2. New Dimensions Radio: “Political Activism: Beyond Shouting and More Than Silence”
  3. Being Well: “The Power of Agency

UNDERSTANDING – listening, learning, reflecting

  1. Good Life Project: “Brené Brown: Vulnerable, Brave and Awake [Best Of]”
  2. New Dimensions Radio: “A Crisis of Truth and Meaning, Recovering Soul in Times of Change”
  3. Good Life Project: “Daniel Goleman: The Truth About Meditation (a scientific look)”
  4. New Dimensions Radio: “Strengthening Your Ability to Pay Attention

YOUR OWN PACE – finding your speed of evolution

  1. New Dimensions Radio: “Reclaiming Our Time and Moving Away from Busy Behavior
  2. Good Life Project: “Redefining Your Own Path to Freedom
  3. Being Well: “Being For Yourself
  4. Good Life Project: “A Good Life is a Practice, Not a Place

Wellbeing inspiration in the form of reading

  1. Fire in the heart, by Deepak Chopra
  2. Happiness. A guide to developing life’s most important skill, by Matthieu Ricard
  3. Man’s search for meaning, by Viktor Frankl
  4. The power of habit, by Charles Duhigg
  5. Thinking fast and slow, by Daniel Kahneman
  6. The happiness advantage. The seven principles that fuel success and performance at work, by Shawn Achor

Support for maintaining sobriety

8 Tips – Support for maintaining sobriety

For some of our members, group meetings and the connection to other sober people are crucial for their recovery and maintaining their sobriety. It is about attending recovery meetings, group therapy, exercise classes, or other cultural and recreative activities.

And we know that people might feel anxious and worried about coping strategies in times of physical distancing, self-isolation and a hibernating society.

Here comes our list of eight tips for maintaining sobriety.*

Protect your mental health during the coronavirus pandemic

There are two important resources we would like to make available for you:

This podcast is exploring how to cope with the natural fears that arise during challenging times, the difference between useful and harmful anxiety, and how people can grow the inner strengths needed to thrive when things get tough.

Coronavirus has plunged the world into uncertainty and the constant news about the pandemic can feel relentless. All of this is taking its toll on people’s mental health, particularly those already living with conditions like anxiety and OCD. So how can we protect our mental health? An important collection of tips…

Participate in online support groups

Our friends at The Temper have compiled an awesome list of English-speaking virtual platforms that provide sobriety community and support. Here is a diverse list of ten recovery and sobriety support communities that offer the kind of support you need.

Our German members run an addiction emergency hotline that you can call whenever needed.

Our Swedish members provide support for people with alcohol and other drug problems. Their hotline is free of charge in Sweden.

And our Swiss members offer special support for children from families with parental alcohol and other drugs problems – through a phone line, an online chat and on social media. Their support service is called Kopf hoch – meaning “keep your chin up” and is available in several languages.

Arrange phone conversations with your mentor, sponsor or therapist

If you regularly meet your mentor, sponsor or a therapist or counselor, make arrangements to continue the conversations, just over the phone rather than in person.

Talk to loved ones, friends, and connections in the sober community

If you’re feeling lonely or vulnerable, sad or anxious, know that it’s okay and important to reach out to your family, friends and/ or other connections in the sober community.

Most people like to be there for their loved ones and these times are special, so that the community has surely a heightened sense of solidarity and compassion.

Limit the time you read the news and scroll through social media

Spending too much time online can exacerbate anxiety and spending too much on social media can be addictive and detrimental to your health. Therefore, make sure you to limit screen time and unplug.

It is an exercise in practicing boundaries between yourself and the avalanche of information and stimuli that is coming your way constantly. It also helps create space for healthy habits.

Invest in healthy habits

As society goes into hibernation, there are many scary consequences but there are also opportunities to really focus on what’s important, what you can control, what you need to do to be healthy – both mentally and physically.

Physical exercise, meditation, yoga, breathing exercise, long walks in nature, educate yourself about healthy and sustainable diets, hydrate, make sure to have a healthy sleep routine, and try taking cold showers – these are all small actions that you can do to improve your mental and physical health.

Investing in these will be of tremendous benefit to you once society goes back into hyperdrive.

Food for thought and intellectual nourishment

A sense of meaning and belonging often comes from our ability to challenge ourselves. Therefore, food for thought and pursuing your path to some intellectual growth is essential and deeply satisfying.

Starting a new hobby, reading, journaling or writing a blog, listening to podcasts, or watching mind-blowing documentaries are some fo the examples for activities that are the good kind of challenging and that provide intellectual nourishment.

On the page “Wellbeing resources“, we provide you with inspiring sources of food for thought.

Get some boring tasks done

Often the biggest feeling of accomplishment comes from getting something done that we’ve been avoiding, dreading even because it was a boring task. Replanting flowers, spring cleaning, sorting out and getting rid of clutter, rearranging the furniture are some of the examples. We are sure Marie Kondo has even more awesome tips for practical things you can do to enhance your immediate environments and in this way increase your wellbeing.

Share your tips with us

We are happy to receive tips from you! Yes you! How do you deal with stress and anxiety and maintain your sobriety? What advice and inspiration would you like to share with the wider community?

Get in touch and we will share your tips on our social media.

*Note: We thank The Tempest and their recent article about how to keep your recovery strong during the coronavirus outbreak. We have adapted and developed their list.

The facts: COVID-19 and alcohol

Read Maik’s blog about the most important facts regarding alcohol’s adverse impact on the immune system (and more)…

Myths and Truths About Alcohol and COVID-19