“I wanted to look after myself. ‘My body is a temple’ is a saying I once would have laughed at, but I wanted to respect this vessel that is taking me through life,” Hart said.
Australian model Jessica Hart recently celebrated her one-year sober anniversary, and to commemorate the occasion she wrote an essay for Harper’sBAZAARabout why she decided to quit drinking and treat her body like a temple.
“One morning, when I was in my early thirties, I finally pulled the plug,” she wrote. “I just woke up one morning and said, This is it. I wanted to look after myself. ‘My body is a temple’ is a saying I once would have laughed at, but I wanted to respect this vessel that is taking me through life. I’d put it through so much and it was time to give back.”
Though Hart says she never got to the point where she had to drink daily, she held the philosophy of “go hard or go home” when it came to consuming alcohol. She took pride in the fact that she could “drink most people under the table and come home as the sun was rising.”
Thinking About The Future
Now, at age 33, she worries about hurting herself, her career and her future with too much partying, and admires the people in her life who are sober and happy.
“I looked at friends who live sober lives and have great families and successful businesses. I often thought, I want that. That other path—the one I was on—was simply unfulfilling.”
Hart started her modeling career at age 14, one year after she first started drinking. She left school to fully devote herself to her work at age 15, traveling the world until she purchased a home in New York a few years later. She signed on with Victoria’s Secret in 2009 and has appeared on the covers of several of the most famous fashion magazines, including BAZAAR.
Unlike some models and celebrities, Hart’s life and career have been relatively free of drama in spite of her heavy drinking. She suffered a broken ankle and some nerve damage due to a serious cut on her foot in 2012, leading to a temporary hiatus from modeling. However, she was back for the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show a few months later.
Hart also broke her wrist two weeks into her self-imposed sobriety, but that ended up helping.
“With a broken wrist for the summer, I had to cancel any travel plans and stay home, chill and heal,” she said. “The universe was telling me it was on my side.”
She also attended AA meetings and The Landmark Forum, a personal development course, to help her transition into sobriety. Additionally, she learned to meditate and practices the skill when she feels anxious. To others looking to go sober, she recommends taking small steps.
“I would encourage you to take small steps and see how they connect to make a huge impact on who you truly are. Once you put to the universe that you’re going to do this for yourself, the universe gives back. I promise you that.”