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Recovery Elevator

It isn't a NO to alcohol, but a YES to a better life! Best selling author Paul Churchill, along with Kristopher Oyen interview people who have stepped away from alcohol in their own lives. Each week this podcast does a deep dive into an exploration of what a booze free life might look like from various perspectives and opinions.  If you are sick and tired of alcohol making you sick and tired, we invite you to listen to Recovery Elevator. Check out what an alcohol free life can look like as others share their own stories of sobriety. If you are sober curious, newly sober, supporting a loved one or living your best life already in recovery, then you are in the right place. This podcast addresses what to do if you’re addicted to alcohol, or if you think you’re an alcoholic. Other topics include, does moderate drinking work, does addiction serve a purpose, what happens to the brain when we quit drinking, should you track sobriety time, is A.A. right for you, spirituality, and more. Similar to other recovery podcasts like This Naked Mind, the Shair Podcast, and the Recovered Podcast, Paul and Kris discuss a topic and then interview someone who has ditched the booze.
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Now displaying: 2019
Jul 8, 2019

Melissa, with a sobriety date of October 29, 2018, shares her story.

Paul shares one of his favorite emails.  Dale from Pittsburgh says…Paul, you son of a bitch.  You have completely ruined alcohol for me.

Your experience with alcohol may no longer be the same after listening to the podcast!  Don’t worry about the how…that always solves itself. 

SHOW NOTES

[11:00] Paul introduces Melissa. 

Melissa says that sobriety is the most badass gift she has given herself.  The biggest milestone.  She is from Vancouver Canada.  She is 44 years old and has a 12-year-old son and a 1-year old rescue dog.  Melissa has been a business owner for the last 5 years.  For fun she likes to walk in the forest. 

[16:20] What is something you want to try out in sobriety? 

Scuba diving!      

[17:30] Give us a background on your drinking.

Melissa had her first drink when she was 15.  She got drunk the first time she drank and the kids at school thought she was cool.  Her parents got divorced when she was 16 and she took the roll of mom to her younger siblings.  In high school she started dating guys that were older and was going to night clubs.  When she graduated high school, and turned 18, she started bartending.  In 1998 she moved to the Cayman Islands and lived there for 5 years.  She drank a lot and her drinking progressed.  When she was 27 years old, she moved back home.  She got married and they had a son.  As she got older, she started to become verbally abusive when she drank.   That’s when the blackouts started to happen. 

January 2010 they separate, her son is 3 years old at the time.  A few months later, while she is volunteering a police officer approaches her and takes her back to her house.  Once she is home she finds out that her brother hit a tree while snowboarding and died. 

[29:50] bring us up to speed to your sobriety date.

2011…she gets together with a new man.  He was an enabler and he let her drink the way she wanted to drink.  On October 29th, after begging him to give her another chance, she walked into an AA meeting. 

[35:40] What was that first meeting like?

Melissa says she was a mess.  Two old-timers took her under their wings and she will never forget them.  She went to meetings every single day for the first month.

[36:35] What did it mean to surrender?

Melissa realized that she was powerless.  The mental obsession was too much and she gave up. 

[46:42] What have you learned about yourself? 

The most important thing Melissa has learned about herself is that she has so much to give. 

[47:28] Rapid Fire Round

  1. Worst memory from drinking?

Waking up in the middle of the floor and not know what I drank. 

  1. What’s your favorite resource in recovery?

Definitely the podcast and AA.    

  1. In regards to sobriety what’s the best advice you’ve received?

Trust the process. 

  1. What parting piece of guidance can you give to listeners?

You’re not alone. 

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

Your 7-year-old son begs you to go to the wine shop after school so he can get the free puck that comes with the bottle of wine you drink. 

  

Upcoming retreats:

Bozeman Retreat – August 14-18, 2019

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

You can find more information about these events here

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free

Sobriety Tracker iTunes

Sobriety Tracker Android

Sober Selfies! - Send your Sober Selfie and your Success Story to info@recoveryelevator.com

“Recovery Elevator – It all starts from the inside-out.”

Jul 1, 2019

Sara, with a sobriety date of January 16, 2019, shares her story.

On today’s episode Paul shares an internet meme that he saw and loved…

“Only in my pain, did I find my will.

         Only in my chaos, did I learn to be still.

         Only in my fear, did I find my might.

         Only in my darkness, did I see my light.”

Starting to see a theme, Paul added a few lines…

         Only through my self-loathing was I able to love myself.

Only through my fears was I able to see how little it has ever served                   me. 

Only through guilt was I able to see that all humans make mistakes, and I’m human.

Only through shame did I realize I don’t owe anyone in life an explanation, ever again.

Only through my failures was I able to see what I was doing wrong and then make the necessary corrections. 

Only through blacking out was I able to recognize the misery with living without light. 

Only with a crushing headache after a heavy night of drinking was I able to appreciate a clear mind.

Only through my addiction was I able to see the path that I didn’t want to take and clearly see that path that I did want to take. 

The trend we are seeing here is called ‘the backward law’.  It when we experience the suffering before we experience the bliss on the other side.  This is also Newton’s first law of motion. 

If you ignore the nudge to quit drinking it will quickly become an elbow to the shoulder, a kick to the groin, then a full Andre the Giant body slam. 

SHOW NOTES

[10:00] Paul introduces Sara. 

Sara with a sobriety date of January 16, 2019, has been sober for 4 months, 22 days.  She is from Melbourne, Australia.  She is 36 years old.  Sara is single and is studying counseling and coaching.  She loves to read nonfiction books on human behavior, phycology, self-development, and relationships. 

[13:00] Give us a background on your drinking. 

Sara started drinking at the age of 13.  She says from the beginning she couldn’t moderate and that alcohol gave her a sense of belonging.  Over the years she found herself gravitating towards friendships with people that liked to drink.  All her friends liked to party but she had a vague feeling that wasn’t a healthy way to live. 

[14:31] When did you first have the notion that it wasn’t a healthy way to live? 

Sara says it was a long time before she realized it wasn’t a healthy way to live but she did know was that the repercussions from her drinking were terrible straight off the bat.  Every time Sara drank, she would do something she was ashamed of.  She never had an off switch and never had a time when she was a ‘normal’ drinker. 

[15:25] Talk to us about your 20s. 

By the time she was 17 Sara had a calendar on the wall and was ticking off days that she didn’t drink.  She could only get 2 days straight and found it frustrating why she couldn’t get more.  This caused her to feel shame and inadequacy as a human.  In her 20s she was a bargirl.  She would go to the bars with her friends or alone.  At 21 she felt the desperation of not knowing what to do about her drinking, she found herself on her knees at a park begging for help.  Her prayers were not answered and she continued to drink and continued to do geographicals within Melbourne. 

At 28 Sara decided to go overseas.  She was struggling with her purpose in life and thought she would find herself and sort her drinking out.  Instead of finding herself she just found a whole lot of bars. Looking back on that time it feels like wasted time because instead of seeing the world she just drank.  

[20:25] When did you decide to go back to Australia and that maybe quitting drinking was part of the grander scheme of things?

Sara had actually gone to AA when she was 23 and had given up drinking for about 6 months, so she knew AA existed, so she ended up going back to AA in Scotland and England.  She had stints of 6 months and 3 months sobriety and says that was some of the most joyous times of her travels. 

[20:55] What do you think happened after those 6 most joyous months?

Sara says her headspace happened.  It told her she was cured and that she had evolved in those 6 months, and could drink moderately. 

[21:45] So did you then make it back to Australia, is that where you got sober?          

In 2012 Sara returned to Australia.  Once back in Australia she pulled away from the pub crowd and was spending more time with just her friends or at home, so she was getting in less trouble but her drinking became more of a daily thing.  In the last couple of years alcohol was the only thing that would make her happy. 

[25:10] Was there a rock bottom moment on January 15, 2019?  Tell us what it was like on January 16?

No, Sara was sick and tired of being sick and tired.  She says she started out on the pink cloud and that lasted about 2 months.  She went to an AA meeting on day 1 because she knew that the times she had the longest stretches of sobriety was when she was active in AA.  She is still active in AA. 

[27:15] What was the first month like? What was different this time?

She said she was not running on fear but that there was a healthy fear there that reminded her she needed to do what she could.  Instead of looking for the differences at meetings she was looking for the similarities. She realized that she was not reaching her full potential when drinking alcohol. 

[30:30] What’s on your bucket list in sobriety?

To become more of a dedicated student with her counseling.  She loves to dance and wants to get back into doing that. 

[37:08] What results are you seeing from the communication between your adult self and your child self? 

Old beliefs are getting brought up and Sara is able to see why she responds in certain ways to certain triggers.  She is hyperaware of her triggers now and is addressing them. 

[39:10] Why do you think you drank?

Sara’s says her parents met in rehab so she feels there is some genetics that come into play, along with some childhood trauma.  Alcohol helped her feel like she belonged. 

[43:15] What are your thoughts on relapse? 

Sara feels that relapses are par for the course and her relapses taught her so much, she didn’t realize that at the time, but looking back now she recognizes it. 

[44:43] Rapid Fire Round

  1. Worst memory from drinking?

The no memory memories.  The moment of dread and horror while trying to piece the night together. 

  1. When was your oh-shit moment?

I was in Scotland and I was gifted a free week’s trip on a yacht.  I hadn’t been drinking for 6 months and I decided I would drink at sea.   The first 6 nights were fine…night 7 found her sneaking onto a cruise liner, stealing bottles of alcohol, getting caught, and waking up in a 90-year-old lady’s home but not knowing where she was. 

  1. What’s your plan in sobriety moving forward?

I want to thrive and lead a joyous and fulfilling life. 

  1. In regards to sobriety what’s the best advice you’ve received?

One day at a time. 

  1. What parting piece of guidance can you give to listeners?

Get really honest with yourself, ask yourself, “how long have I been trying to moderate? And has it been working?”

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

It’s 3 AM and your ex-boyfriend’s housemate finds you outside of the house, ¾ ways up a tree, and when he asks you what you are doing you say, “I’m being a ninja”, and you proceed to fall out of the tree onto the ground and laugh like a maniac. 

 

 Upcoming retreats:

Bozeman Retreat – August 14-18, 2019

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

You can find more information about these events here

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

This episode is brought to you in support by ZipRecruiter. Right now, my listeners can try ZipRecruiter for free. Visit Ziprecruiter.com/elevator

 

Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free

Sobriety Tracker iTunes

Sobriety Tracker Android

Sober Selfies! - Send your Sober Selfie and your Success Story to info@recoveryelevator.com

 

“Recovery Elevator – It all starts from the inside-out.”

Jun 24, 2019

Chris, with a sobriety date of February 12, 2019, shares his story.

On today’s episode Paul shares 8 strategies that you can implement when you are going through hard times. 

  1. Everything can, and will, change. 
  2. You’ve overcome challenges before.
  3. Recognize this life situation as a learning experience, AKA an opportunity.
  4. You may not be getting what you want, but you are getting what you need.
  5. Lighten up, do not take yourself to seriously.
  6. You can self-medicate with kindness to yourself.
  7. Don’t make it worse by taking on other people’s tough times.
  8. There is always something to be happy for.

 

SHOW NOTES:

[13:40] Paul introduces Chris. 

Chris has been sober since February 12, 2019 and is 35 years old.  He is a technology trainer for a finance company.  He is divorced and has three boys, ages 15, 10 and 7.  For fun Chris likes to sing and play guitar in a band, he also does improv and stand up comedy.  Since getting sober he is exercising a lot. 

[14:20] When did you start drinking?

He had his first drink, tequila he had stole from his parents, at the age of 11.  He was in an AOL chat room at the time and he says it gave him liquid courage to chat freely, and he was hooked.   

[16:20] Give us a more background about your drinking. 

Chris’s drinking didn’t really get going until his sophomore year of high school.  It ramped up quickly and he was experiencing black outs by his junior year.  Chris also got his 1st, of 3, DUIs his junior year of high school.  He started losing friends and girlfriends because of his drinking and by his senior year he was trying to get sober.  He started college after high school and got his 2nd DUI at 19 years old.  His first son was also born when Chris was 19.  For the majority of his 20’s he replaced his drinking with marijuana.  He married the mother of his son and they had two more.  In 2013 they got divorced.  Chris’s pot smoking was a big part of why they got divorced.  After his divorce he went back to drinking.  Within a month, at the age of 29, Chris got his 3rd DUI. 

[25:58] Was there some sobriety time between 2013 and February 2019?

He had some forced sobriety time due to being on probation from his 3rd DUI.  When all his legal issues were over in 2015, he went back to smoking pot and drinking, and he added taking Adderall into the mix.  On February 11th he went to a family member and told them that he was taking Adderall and not as prescribed.  He wanted help.  The first 3 days of his sobriety he stayed with family.  He also called the doctor that prescribed the Adderall and “burnt the ships”. 

[33:55] What was your first month off the substances like?

It took him a few days to get his sleep schedule back to normal, but Chris says he had so much fun that the first weekend he spent with his boys off of all substances.  He started to flip things around and instead of looking at sobriety as missing out on something he started looking at it as what he was gaining.  He was choosing to be happy, and he was. 

[40:10] What are some of the tools you’ve used these last 4 months?

He listens to recovery podcasts, like Recovery Elevator and Recovery Happy Hour.  The online support group and forum is always there.  Chris also reads a lot of self-help books. 

[43:00] What advice would you give to your younger self?          

He would tell himself to love himself more and that he is worth more than he thinks, but he also feels like he needed to go through all the things he went though to get to where he is now. 

[44:45] Do you know why you were using substances?

Chris says that his internal self didn’t feel good enough, and to hide those feelings he used. 

[45:50] What have you learned about yourself, along the way, that stands out?

Chris leaned that he can change, that he is capable of positive change. 

[47:00] Rapid Fire Round

  1. Worst memory from drinking?

Getting so drunk at a neighbor’s house that his kids had to go home to their mother’s house and having to call the next morning, realizing his drinking was affecting his kids.

  1. What’s your plan in sobriety moving forward?

To keep moving and not get comfortable. 

  1. What parting piece of guidance can you give to listeners?

If you think you have an issue then you probably do, try quitting for 30 days.  You can do it. 

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

You’re listening to this podcast.  Also, if you’re shopping for fancy craft beer and you have to look at the alcohol by volume percentage of each beer, before you buy it.  And if you don’t find the alcohol by volume you break out your phone and google it, because anything under 5% would not be worth the can allowance. 

 

Upcoming retreats:

Bozeman Retreat – August 14-18, 2019

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

You can find more information about these events here

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

 

BetterHelp 

Visit betterhelp.com/ELEVATOR and join the over 500,000 people talking charge of their mental health with the help of an experienced professional. Recovery Elevator listeners get 10% off your first month at betterhelp.com/ELEVATOR

 

Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free

Sobriety Tracker iTunes

Sobriety Tracker Android

Sober Selfies! - Send your Sober Selfie and your Success Story to info@recoveryelevator.com

 

“Recovery Elevator – It all starts from the inside-out.”

Jun 17, 2019

Tim, with 2 days of sobriety, shares his story.

On today’s episode Paul talks about 2 articles that discuss alcohol use.  Links for these articles can be found following the show notes. 

The first article, published on May 7, 2019 in USA Today, says that alcohol use is soaring worldwide, with the average adult now consuming about 1.7 gallons of pure alcohol per year.  Just in the past 27 years the total volume of alcohol that people consumed globally increased by 70%.  Even though on a global level alcohol consumption is increasing, if you are listening to this podcast you have made it further than 95% of people out there.  You are starting to make changes. 

On the brighter side, an article published on January 17, 2018 in Bloomberg, reported that Americans drank less alcohol in 2018, for the third straight year.  Total cases of beer, wine and spirits consumed in the US dropped by .8% in 2018.  This was the third straight year that there had been a decline in consumption.  So globally people are consuming more alcohol, but in the United States consumption is declining. 

There’s a new term called ‘sobor curious’, which includes a large population that doesn’t necessarily have an issue with alcohol, but are waking up and are recognizing that maybe messages that big alcohol is telling us aren’t panning out to be true in real life. 

 

SHOW NOTES

[12:30] Tim, with a sobriety date of May 13, 2019, has 2 days sober.  After having this interview scheduled for about a week Tim emailed Paul to let him know that he had drank.  He felt like he might not be the ideal candidate to be on the podcast.  After reading the email, Paul let Tim know that he is exactly who he wants to have on the podcast.

[15:10] Paul introduces Tim. 

Tim is 36 years old and was born, and raised, in Boston Massachusetts.  He came from an Italian family that was in the construction industry.  In middle and high school, he developed a real passion for music.  He dedicated himself to hours and hours of voice, guitar and piano lessons, which led him into a career in ministry as a worship leader.  Tim got married at 19 and is still married to the same woman, they are about to celebrate 17 years and have 3 children.  His career in ministry is in the past and he is working as a project manager for a company that installs high end woodworking beams and bookshelves.  

[16:45] Give us a little background about your drinking.   

Tim started drinking at 15 and the first night he drank he got alcohol poisoning.  He spent that first night in the shower throwing up and blacking out.  He says he was never able to drink casually.  Getting married at the age of 19, to a woman that is a couple years older than him, meant that he had someone that could buy alcohol for him.  In his early 20s he was drinking about a 6-pack a day. 

At the age of 25 Tim attended his first AA meeting, just to see.  By this time, he was drinking 8-10 beers a day.  After listening to someone’s story at that meeting, he decided that he was not an alcoholic.  Tim says he went to a few more AA meetings throughout his 20s, but he continued to drink and started to mix it up with hard alcohol and found his favorite drink, Captain and Coke. 

As he moved through his 30’s, Tim and his wife started to have pretty regular arguments about his drinking.  Tim says he was looking for his wife to put her foot down and give him an ultimatum, but that wasn’t happening.  He tried to moderate, and that didn’t work.  He had some periods, 3 – 6 months, when he did not drink, but once he would consume alcohol again it would take about a week and he would be right back to daily drinking.

[21:30] In regards to those times of abstinence, what was it that brought you back to drinking?

Tim would tell himself that because he just went 3, or 6, months without drinking, that he must have control over it.  The thought of having a glass of wine with his wife, while they watch the sunset, would just seem nice.  That first drink always took him back to where he left off, in a matter of weeks.  

In his 30s Tim started hiding alcohol and lying about how much he was drinking.  He was always calculating how he was going to get that buzz. 

[23:46] Did you have a rock bottom moment when you knew you had a problem?

Tim had joked about being a black out drinker in his 20s, but it wasn’t until his 30’s that he discovered he was really blacking out.  He would drink and come to and realize that he had driven or would come to and not know where he was or who he was with.  When he was blacking out on a regular basis, he knew he had a problem. 

[25:20] What happens next? 

When Tim was 30, he had gotten a job offer from a huge church down in Atlanta.  It was like his life’s dream, so they moved down to Atlanta.  For the next 6 years Tim found himself counseling people about their drug and alcohol problems, while his drinking continued.  

When Tim was 34, he went to a psychiatrist who put him on Adderall, he then was mixing alcohol and Adderall.  He became addicted to the Adderall.    

[30:10] Recently you had 7 months sober and then relapsed 22 days ago, tell me about that.          

During those 7 months Tim was still taking Adderall and was smoking a THC vape pen.  Although he was not drinking during that time he was still dealing with depression and all that comes with being an addict. 

25 days ago, he relapsed, drank a lot, and crashed his truck.  It was then that he went back to AA, got a sponsor, and was ready to take it seriously. 

2 weeks ago, Tim’s father, who also struggled with alcoholism, but never admitted it, committed suicide.  Shortly after this Tim went to a bar, had 3 beers, left and called his sponsor. 

[37:30] You are on day 2, how are you feeling?

Tim says he feels great.  He has energy in the morning and is getting up early to pray.  He has been able to be honest with his boss, which has saved him from losing his job.  He explained to his boss that he could not stay late after work because he is now going to AA, and his boss has been very supportive.

[41:00] Do you know why you drank?

Tim says alcohol helped him feel his emotions, it allowed him to cry.  He wanted to ‘feel’ and alcohol did that for him. 

[43:50] What are you going to do when a craving hits?

Tim starts each morning in prayer or meditation.  He sets his day up and prepares for the cravings that he knows he will have.  He also has multiple sponsors and a network of people that he can contact when one is not available.  He listens to podcasts and also has people checking in on him.       

 [45:21] Rapid Fire Round

  1. Worst memory from drinking?

2 years ago, I made a big scene at a restaurant and embarrassed my wife and my friends.  I stacked a bunch of dishes and smashed them on the table, I drank way too much and had to get thrown out. 

  1. When was your ah ha moment?

It was something I heard on your podcast, someone said, “life isn’t happening to you, it’s happening for you”.  That concept was so incredibly mind-blowing to me. 

  1. What’s your plan in sobriety moving forward?

To continue on knowing that if I am isolated, which is my nature, I will not succeed at this. 

  1. What’s your favorite resource in recovery?

Paul I’m not saying this to blow any smoke, but I listen to multiple podcasts, and for some reason yours has been my number 1. 

  1. In regards to sobriety what is the best advice you have received?

Stop feeling so fucking sorry for yourself. 

  1. What parting piece of guidance can you give to listeners?

Don’t wait.  Not one more drink, it’s always one more drink, one more day…do it right this second because life it worth it. 

 

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

In the middle of the night, drunk, you are seeing fireworks in your rearview mirror only to discover you have driven the wheel off of your truck and the brake caliper and axel are scraping and shooting sparks 15 feet into the air.  

 

Upcoming retreats:

Bozeman Retreat – August 14-18, 2019

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

You can find more information about these events here

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Alcohol Use is Rising Around the World

 Americans Drank Less Alcohol in 2018

 

BetterHelp 

Visit betterhelp.com/ELEVATOR and join the over 500,000 people talking charge of their mental health with the help of an experienced professional. Recovery Elevator listeners get 10% off your first month at betterhelp.com/ELEVATOR

 

Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free

Sobriety Tracker iTunes

Sobriety Tracker Android

Sober Selfies! - Send your Sober Selfie and your Success Story to info@recoveryelevator.com

 

“Recovery Elevator – It all starts from the inside-out.”

Jun 10, 2019

Nick, with 101 days of sobriety, shares his story.

Paul is asking the listeners what they want to hear on the podcast.  Do you want more interviews with industry professionals, such as recovery coaches, authors, and wellness leaders?  Or do you like the podcast just the way it is with Paul interviewing sobriety badasses?  Leave a review on iTunes and let Paul know! 

On today’s podcast Paul shares that he was recently interviewed on a podcast called, Self Made and Sober by the host Andrew Lassise.  Andrew asked Paul what was the difference between his first 2 ½ years of sobriety and from September 7, 2014 on.  According to Paul, that was a fantastic question with an easy answer. 

The first 2 ½ years of sobriety was from January 1, 2010 through August 2012.  On 1/1/10 Paul made a declaration to go 30 days without alcohol.  When day 30 hit Paul was at a crossroads.  He had started to lose weight, feel good, his face was less puffy, life just got better.  So, he decided to go another month.  Going into month 3 the pink cloud showed up.  But during this 2 ½ years he had a mindset of lack.  A mindset that he was missing something, couldn’t do something.  And as with anything, when we approach a goal with a mindset of lack, with a mindset that we will be missing something, it is not going to last.  After 2 ½ years Paul went to his first AA meeting and walked away thinking “I got this.”.   2 days later he drank, picking up right where he had left off.  Those first 2 ½ years were based on willpower, which does not work. 

On September 7, 2014 something felt different.  He knew that he had to quit drinking.  But his mindset was different.  Paul wasn’t looking at giving up alcohol as a sacrifice, but rather that space was being created, and things (alcohol) were being cleared, for better things to come.  This time he wasn’t doing it out of fear, he was doing it because there was a light at the end of the tunnel, an opportunity.  That opportunity shows up every day.  Instead of having a mindset of lack Paul now has a mindset of opportunity. 

SHOW NOTES 

[18:40] Paul introduces Nick. 

Nick is 29 years old and has been sobor since January 25, 2019.  He says that that biggest lesson he has learned in recovery so far is personal acceptance.  Nick is from Saginaw, MI.  He says he is figuring out what he likes to do for fun, that right now everything is fun whereas when he was drinking nothing was fun.  He enjoys being around people, disk golf, hiking, and meditation.  He is divorced, a result of his addiction, but close to his family who live is Saginaw as well.  For work Nick is about to start a new position with an organization called Families Against Narcotics.   

[22:40] Give us a little background about your drinking. 

Nick started drinking and using at the age of 14.  From the first time he drank nick knew he wasn’t like other people.  He realized he didn’t have an off switch.  He says there was no slow progression in to alcoholism, that he was an addict the first time he took a drink.  Throughout college he was binge drinking up to 5 nights a week, but that didn’t seem like a problem to Nick because that was what everyone else was doing.  In 2012 his drinking and drugging amplified.  But he was still doing well in school, still holding a job, still doing everything that looked normal on the outside. 

[25:43] Sounds like there was some cognitive dissonance, tell us what that was like, how did that feel?

Nick said he felt powerless.  He felt out of control and the only way he felt better was more drinking.  There was a lot of rationalizing and minimalizing.  In July of 2014 Nick went into rehab for the first time.  In September 2014 his wife kicked him out.  He moved back home and was doing drugs and drinking every day.  On December 6, 2014 Nick overdosed.  That put him in the hospital for about 2 weeks, and they weren’t even sure he was going to make it.  He then went back to rehab and says that’s when there was a shift in his mindset.  He finally accepted that he wasn’t in control and that his life was unmanageable.  He entered into a 3-month inpatient rehab; the same one his brother was at. 

[28:18] What did it feel like when you had that mind shift?

Nick said it was a huge relief, that it felt like he could let go and let God take over. 

[31:15] Tell us what it was like being in rehab with your brother. 

They were both there for 3 months but they kept them apart for the first month.  After that they started to have some overlap with their programs.  Nick said he had the mind shift but that his brother did not.  On the plane ride home from rehab his brother purchased a beer.  This made Nick angry and he told his brother that.  His brother minimalized it. 

[33:30] Take us from getting out of rehab in the beginning of 2015 to your sobriety date the beginning of 2019.        

Nick has been active in recovery since getting out of rehab.  He has had slip ups and relapses, never with the hard drugs, just with alcohol.  The last time he drank was January 24, 2019. 

[37:10] Talk to us about some of these slip ups.         

It got to the point that drinking wasn’t fun anymore.  Every time he would drink there was a lesson he would learn.  The biggest lesson he learned from the slip ups was that alcohol was going to hold him back, just like the drugs would, and that he needed to be totally sobor to reach his fullest potential. 

[40:35] Tell us more about the moment when you told your friends you were no longer drinking, and how it was after that. 

The first few weeks his friends went out of their way to make him comfortable.  What he had expected, that there would be problem or a change, was not the case at all.  His friends stopped drinking around him at first, and things got easier fairly quickly. 

[42:30] Why do you think you drank and used?      

He thinks it was because he had a false narrative of who he really was.  Alcohol helped numb it and made it easier to swallow that he wasn’t living his purpose.  He also had a lot of emotional trauma growing up and he thinks that played a part. 

[45:15] In the past 101 days have you experienced cravings and what tools have you used to get past them?

 

For Nick a craving is just a thought and it is all about changing that thought process.  The cravings have been a lot milder than they were with the drugs.  When he has a craving now, and is alone, he yells ‘STOP’, if he is with someone he thinks ‘STOP’ in his head. 

 

[47:50] Tell us more about the Open Discussion, OD Movement, website. 

 

After his grandmother’s passing in 2018 Nick wanted to do something to proactively try and address addiction.  So, he created the Open Discussion Movement website, https://odmovement.com/   The OD Movement’s mission is to change the dialogue around addiction.  You can find the OD Movement podcast by searching for it on most podcast platforms.  

 

[56:00] Rapid Fire Round

 

  1. Worst memory from drinking?

Driving drunk and wrecking my car and waking up in the psyche ward. 

  1. When was your oh shit moment?

When I woke up in the ICU after my overdose in 2014. 

  1. What’s your plan in sobriety moving forward?

My plan is to continue building the OD Movement and just continue doing the next right thing. 

  1. What’s your favorite resource in recovery?

The Meeting Finder app on my phone, I love that I can go to a meeting at any time. 

  1. In regards to sobriety what is the best advice you have received?

You’re exactly where you need to be. 

  1. What parting piece of guidance can you give to listeners?

It gets better.  You have no idea how great life can be until you live a life free from the clutches of drugs and alcohol. 

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

You wake up in the hospital and say, “man I shouldn’t have done that last night.”. 

 

Upcoming retreats:

Bozeman Retreat – August 14-18, 2019

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

You can find more information about these events here

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

 

Green Chef

For a total of $75 off, that’s $25 off each of your first 3 boxes, go to www.greenchef.us/elevator75 

Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free

Sobriety Tracker iTunes

Sobriety Tracker Android

Sober Selfies! - Send your Sober Selfie and your Success Story to info@recoveryelevator.com

 

“Recovery Elevator – It all starts from the inside-out.”

Jun 3, 2019

Gerald, with a sobriety date of November 16, 2015, shares his story.

Registration for the RE Asia Adventure is now open!  You can register and get more information about this event here

On a recent Café’ RE webinar, our host Odette, who is a sobriety warrior, brought a fantastic topic to the webinar.  The Cherokee parable titled Two Wolves.  It is about an old Cherokee teaching his grandson about life.  He tells the grandson that he has a fight going on inside him between two wolves.  One is evil, the other is good. 

The grandson thought for a moment and then asked his grandfather, “Which wolf will win?”  The old Cherokee replied, “The one you feed.” 

This same fight is going on inside all of us.  But we should refrain from labeling our wolves ‘evil’ and ‘good’, because they are both equally important.  We tend to feed our ‘evil’ wolf more, because it’s source of energy doesn’t require much action.  When this wolf gets thirsty, we feed it alcohol.  The ‘good’ wolf takes more effort and energy to feed, it craves sobriety. 

Because both wolves are equally important, we cannot ignore the ‘evil’ one, we must acknowledge it and that will keep it happy.  When we ignore one, we become unbalanced.       

SHOW NOTES

[13:00] Paul introduces Gerald. 

Gerald is 50 years old and lives in Boulder, CO with his family.  He was born and raised in Connecticut, where he went to a private school and private college.  Skiing and biking are Gerald’s passions.    

[15:50] Give us a little background about your drinking. 

Gerald started drinking when he was in high school.  Through high school and college his drinking was only an occasional/weekend thing.  After moving to Boulder, he cut back on his drinking because he was staying active biking and training for triathlons. 

At the age of 30 he decided he wanted to go to culinary school and stopped exercising and started eating, and his drinking picked up.  He gained 40 pounds.  In 2011 he decided he wanted to lose the weight, so he got back on his bike, cut back on his drinking, and in 8 months lost the 40 he had gained. 

When he was 43 Gerald lost his job and the decrease in income forced him and his family to move in with his in-laws.  While he appreciated what his in-laws were doing for him and his family, he says it really started to take its toll on him and the way he felt as a man.  This is when his drinking really started to progress. 

[19:11] What happened after that?

In April of 2015 he lost another job.  The pattern was starting to solidify.  This was also when he really started to get into personal development. 

[20:20] Did you start to see the role that alcohol was playing in your life? 

Gerald said only looking backwards.  He didn’t see it at the time.  He thought he drank the same as all his friends, and that nobody ever pulled him aside or suggested he had a drinking problem.  He did stop drinking for 3 weeks and nobody seemed to notice, so he went back to his normal and kept on drinking. 

[21:55] What happened on November 16, 2015?         

Gerald was on his way home from his job at a brewery and was invited to a going away party for someone from work.  After grabbing alcohol from work, and drinking even more from the party, he got behind the wheel, took a turn and hit the curb hard enough to employ his side airbag…right in front of a cop.  He got a DUI. 

[23:00] Was this your rock bottom moment?       

Gerald says it was the moment that he knew he had to change something.  He got kicked out of his in-law’s house that night and lost his job a few days later.  He found himself starting at ground zero again. 

[28:45] What was day 1 like? 

On day 1 Gerald kept an appointment with his blog coach, which he had made prior to his DUI.  He says that appointment was transformational.  It helped him begin to understand that he had a different purpose.  Instead of doing what he just wanted to do he was trying to create something of value.  Providing more value to people made the biggest difference in his life. 

[30:56] Walk us through that first week, that first month.    

Connection with his family made the biggest difference, and understanding that he was moving away from something while moving towards something else.  Instead of trying to avoid drinking he started looking forward to other things like creating content and spending time with his kids. 

**Gerald wrote a book titled, My Morning Practice: How to Put Down the Bottle, Escape Mediocrity, and Master Your Morning Mindset** 

[35:15] Talk to us about how changing one little habit in the morning can make a tremendous change in your life. 

Gerald starting noticing that most of the most successful people on the planet all had a morning routine.  A lot of those routines included exercise.  Gerald decided to write 10 ideas down every morning.  About a month later he heard about a bike challenge so he adding biking to his mornings.  He continued to add things to his routine.  This routine gave Gerald the time and the space to really think about what is important to him. 

[40:00] Walk us through a good morning routine for listeners that are new in sobriety. 

First thing is to cut back time from what you are doing in the evening, less TV for example, so you can get to bed a little earlier and wake up a little earlier.  Then take it a bite sized piece at a time, adding only one thing at a time and being consistent with that one thing before adding more. 

[47:08] What have you learned about yourself in sobriety?

He’s learned that he has a growth mindset and if there’s a skill out there that he wants to learn he can accomplish it. 

[48:00] Where can we find you and your book?

You can find his book on Amazon right here.  You can find Gerald himself through his email, gerald@geraldrhodes.com , or his website,  https://www.geraldrhodes.com/ .

[48:30] Rapid Fire Round

  1. Worst memory from drinking?

My son’ 8th birthday, my ex-wife and I got into this huge fight, it was a mess and it was all because I was drunk. 

  1. When was your ah-ha moment?

I was watching a video by Bob Proctor and the message he gave led to my big ah-ha moment. 

  1. What’s your plan in sobriety moving forward?

My morning practice, it has served me very well.   

  1. Apart from your morning routine, what’s your favorite resource in recovery?

A book by Gary John Bishop called Unfu*k Yourself and listening to books on Audible. 

  1. In regards to sobriety what is the best advice you have received?

That I am a miracle. 

  1. What parting piece of guidance can you give to listeners?

Take a few minutes every day to do something that you love and to think about what’s most important to you. 

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

You take home white wine spritzers in a to go cup.  

 

Upcoming retreats:

Bozeman Retreat – August 14-18, 2019

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

You can find more information about these events here

Betterhelp 
Visit betterhelp.com/ELEVATOR and join the over 500,000 people talking charge of their mental health with the help of an experienced professional. For (podcast name) listeners get 10% off your first month at betterhelp.com/ELEVATOR

Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free

Sobriety Tracker iTunes

Sobriety Tracker Android

Sober Selfies! - Send your Sober Selfie and your Success Story to info@recoveryelevator.com

 

“Recovery Elevator – It all starts from the inside-out.”

May 27, 2019

Alex, with 63 days of sobriety, shares his story.

 

On today’s podcast Paul talks about what researchers, that studied the drinking habits of people that work with the public, discovered.  They found that employees that forced themselves to smile and be happy around customers were more at risk to heavier drinking after work.  Because of this, employers may want to rethink their ‘service with a smile’ policies. 

 

Employees that work with the public may be using a lot of self-control, so later these employees may not have enough self-control to regulate how much they drink.  Faking, or suppressing emotions, is called surface acting, which is also linked with drinking after work.  Overall it was found that employees that interacted with the public drank more after work than those who did not.

 

Try not to suppress your emotions.  Emotions are just that, emotions.  They are not good or bad.  It’s okay to be authentic in the work place.  The best way to be authentic is with eye contact.  Authenticity replaces positivity. 

   

SHOW NOTES

 

[13:45] Paul introduces Alex. 

 

Alex is 34 years old.  He lives in Sandy, UT, where he was born and raised.  He is married and has a 3-year-old son.  He works in information technology and is a captain in the Army National Guard.  For fun Alex likes anything outdoors.  He enjoys skiing, camping, glamping and also plays the guitar and drums. 

  

[16:20] Give us a little background about your drinking. 

 

Alex joined the military and started drinking at age 21.  He describes his drinking as like a frog in a slow boil.  Around age 30 drinking really started to affect his health.  His hangovers were getting worse.  He was having unexplained pains where his liver was located and experiencing a shortness of breath. 

 

[20:45] What was your anxiety like?

 

He was worried about things a normal person wouldn’t be worried about.  In October 2017 he went to his doctor and was finally honest about his anxiety and depression…but not with his drinking. In January of 2018 he decided to do a dry January so hit the booze hard leading up to it. 

 

[25:45] What was it like on January 1st? 

 

At day 15 Alex found the podcast and started binge listening to it.  He realized he was like the people on the podcast, that he was an alcoholic.  At day 32, after making it through ‘dry January’ he drank.  That started a 2-week bender. 

 

[30:56] During that 2-week bender did you try to stop?        

 

He got a case of the ‘fuck-its’ and that 2-week bender was just everyday hammering the alcohol.  He then just realized that he wasn’t being the person he wanted to be. 

 

[32:40] Talk to us about after you had that moment of clarity.       

 

The most important thing for Alex was being very honest with himself about the fact he is an alcoholic and needs to stay away from alcohol.  He made an appointment with his doctor and told him about his drinking.  His doctor referred him to therapy. 

 

[37:37] How are you going to get day 64?

 

He says he needs to keep busy.  He goes to a climbing gym.  He drinks sparkling water if he feels like he needs something in his hand. 

 

[39:42] What have you learned about yourself during this alcohol-free journey? 

    

He’s returning to who he wants to be.  Most importantly he’s learned how to be honest with himself.      

 

[44:00] Rapid Fire Round

 

  1. Worst memory from drinking?

 

All the times I made my wife feel like shit. 

 

  1. Do you remember a specific ‘oh-shit’ moment?

 

A year after my son was born, I was having suicidal thoughts. 

 

  1. What’s your favorite resource in recovery?

 

Definitely this podcast. 

 

  1. In regards to sobriety what is the best advice you’ve ever received?

 

To think about the positives instead of the negatives. 

 

  1. What parting piece of guidance can you give to listeners?

 

Know that you are lying to yourself and start being honest with yourself. 

 

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

 

You count the half 16oz. flat warm 9% beer from the night before as inventory for tonight’s alcohol intake. 

 

 

 

 

 

Upcoming retreats:

Bozeman Retreat – August 14-18, 2019

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

You can find more information about these events here

 

Thank you to today’s sponsor Betterhelp 

Visit betterhelp.com/ELEVATOR and join the over 500,000 people talking charge of their mental health with the help of an experienced professional. For (podcast name) listeners get 10% off your first month at betterhelp.com/ELEVATOR

 

 

Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free

Sobriety Tracker iTunes

Sobriety Tracker Android

Sober Selfies! - Send your Sober Selfie and your Success Story to info@recoveryelevator.com

 

“Recovery Elevator – It all starts from the inside-out.”

May 20, 2019

Ryan, with 90 days of sobriety, shares his story.

 

On today’s podcast Paul talks about the 3 major players when it comes to sobriety.  The players are; the mind, the body, and the breath.  Paul likes to call this the 20/40/40 rule, because that is how we should allocate the importance to these 3 major players.  

 

The mind (20%) should be used as a radar to scan the body, do not try and use the mind to solve addiction.  The body (40%) never lies, it is your unconscious mind.  The breath (40%) is like your fighter jet.  Once your mind has located where on your body your energetic mass has accumulated get in your fighter jet (the breath) and start building circuits in this area. 

 

 

SHOW NOTES

 

[12:15] Paul introduces Ryan. 

 

Ryan lives in Sacramento, Ca.  He works in sales for a large software company.  He is 35 years old and got married last year.  For fun Ryan likes anything outdoors.  He enjoys snowboarding, hiking, running, and he is currently training for a half marathon.  Ryan says he is an extrovert and gets a lot of energy hanging out and talking with people and friends.

 

[14:20] Give us a little background about your drinking. 

 

Ryan had his first drink at 14 years old.  Throughout high school he played a lot of sports and only drank on the weekends.  His drinking ramped up in college.  He joined a fraternity and was always the guy that you could count on to do crazy things.  Looking back, he can see that his drinking ramped up in college and it never stopped once he was out of college.

 

Even though he would go periods when drinking didn’t seem to be a problem, he would then be back to blacking out again and drinking like he was in college.  

 

 

[16:30] When did you start to realize that alcohol was a problem?

 

Ryan says that is tricky, because even though he would wake up and not remember things from the night before his friends were doing the same thing, and they’d be making jokes about it. 

 

But when he was 21, he woke in the hospital and they told him he had a .39 blood alcohol level (BAC).  Someone had called an ambulance.  He says that that was probably not the only time his BAC had been that high.  He felt the problem was the fact that he was blacking out, and that is what he tried to address, which is why he continued to drink for the next 10-15 years. 

 

 

[18:25] In your 20s was there a specific moment that you tried to take action in regards to your drinking?

 

Ryan says no.  He felt he was in his 20s and he was having fun.  He was still functioning and finding success in his career.  He did try putting some rules on his drinking but says he never really wanted to stop drinking during his 20s, he just wanted to stop blacking out.   

 

[19:30] When did you realize that to stop blacking out wasn’t an option, but that you had to address the alcohol.        

 

Ryan says he doesn’t really feel he ever had quitting on the table until 90 days ago.  He took breaks, but never with the intention of quitting.  Even after being diagnosed with type I diabetes at the age of 29 he didn’t think he should stop drinking, instead his thoughts were, “will I be able to drink again?”. 

 

[23:20] What happened 90 days ago?     

 

More than anything Ryan says he was just sick and tired of being sick and tired.  He also says his wife played a big role in it.  After a work trip to Vegas and blacking out, losing his phone and credit card, and his wife not being able to get a hold of him he realized just how scared she was when he got home.  Scared that something really bad could have happened to him.   He knew then he had to stop drinking. 

 

[28:15] What was the first week, the first month, after Vegas like?

 

He felt empowered and knew he was going to do it.  He wasn’t sure how he was going to do it, was definitely scared, but knew he was going to do it.  First and foremost, his wife said that she would quit with him.  He started reading books about alcohol/alcoholism.  He started looking at all the opportunities that giving up alcohol would bring. 

 

[33:07] What are some of the big things you’ve learned in the last 90 days without alcohol? 

    

He’s learned to be more present and more mindful.    

 

[36:20] Do you know why you drank?

 

He feels it had to do with his ego and a sense of identification.  Growing up he identified himself as an athlete, in college he could no longer truly do that.  College was the first time he was away from his twin brother so he was building his own identity.  He became the fun, social, crazy guy and he thinks that was his why. 

 

[39:00] What’s on your bucket list in sobriety?

 

Ryan doesn’t have a bucket list, or a list of things he wants to get done.  He is just taking action in the moment when he wants to do something. 

 

[39:38] Is there anything you would have done differently while getting sober?

 

He would have done it sooner. 

 

[39:46] What’s the biggest obstacle you’ve encountered in the last 90 days? 

 

He says it’s been the anxiety leading up to, and before, telling people about his sobriety. 

 

[41:30] Rapid Fire Round

 

  1. Worst memory from drinking?

 

There’s no worst, there’s just lots of really bad memories.  From being in the drunk tank, to the hospital, to passing out in random places. 

 

  1. Do you remember a specific ‘oh-shit’ moment?

 

When I went to the hospital my senior year with that .39 BAC.

 

  1. What’s your plan in sobriety moving forward?

 

I don’t have a true plan; I think that’s part of the plan.  It’s not that I’m focused on just being sober.  I’m focused on being the best version of myself and that just happens to include sobriety.    

 

  1. What’s your favorite resource in recovery?

 

Honestly, this podcast and my wife. 

 

  1. In regards to sobriety what is the best advice you’ve ever received?

 

Don’t let the past dictate your future. 

 

  1. What parting piece of guidance can you give to listeners?

 

Stop worrying about if you’re an alcoholic or not, who cares about the labels?  Ask yourself, does drinking cause you problems in any part of your life?  And if so, then it’s a problem and you can fix that problem by not drinking. 

 

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

 

You refuse to listen to someone’s story about sobriety because you don’t actually want to stop drinking alcohol, you just want all the problems from drinking alcohol to magically go away. 

 

 

 

 

 

Upcoming retreats:

Bozeman Retreat – August 14-18, 2019

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

You can find more information about these events here

Resources mentioned in this episode:

This episode is brought to you in support by ZipRecruiter. Right now, my listeners can try ZipRecruiter for free. Visit Ziprecruiter.com/elevator

 

Babbel

This episode is brought to you by the language learning app Babbel and right now, my listeners can try Babbel for free

 

 

Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free

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Sober Selfies! - Send your Sober Selfie and your Success Story to info@recoveryelevator.com

 

“Recovery Elevator – It all starts from the inside-out.”

May 13, 2019

Liz, with a sobriety date of July 8, 2017, shares her story.

 

Workshops for the Bozeman, MT, retreat in August are lined up!  There are still a few spots left!  You can find more information about this event here

 

On today’s podcast Paul talks about a common misconception people have as they move forward in a life without alcohol.  That misconception is that when we get sober, we will finally find out who we really are.  But that isn’t how it works.  We do get to that point, but first we must find out who we aren’t.  

 

During this phase; people, places, things, ideas, thought patterns, identities, that are no longer in line with your new direction in life will start to fade away.  Just allow this process to happen.   Recovery is all about action, but this is a process of inaction.  This is a recurring process. 

 

 

SHOW NOTES

 

[10:05] Paul introduces Liz. 

 

Liz is 29 years old and is originally from Indiana but is now living in Frankfurt, Illinois.  She is a licensed, board certified, acupuncturist and Chinese herbalist.  She is married.  For fun she enjoys working out, hiking, yoga, reading, going to concerts, and she is a big foodie. 

 

[11:00] Give us a little background about your drinking. 

 

Liz started drinking when she was about 12 or 13 years old.  She was an only child and grew up in an abusive household, with addict parents (who are still active in their addictions).  She was sexually abused by her father and his friends between the ages of 8-10.  All of this trauma laid dormant until Liz was 21 years old. 

 

Liz’s father would give her drugs and alcohol whenever she would ask, she believes it was his way of keeping her numb, so that she would never speak up.  Her house was the party house in high school, and even middle school. 

Liz dated an ecstasy dealer, which led her into an ecstasy addiction and an overdose.  At the age of 20 she went to jail for underage drinking.  She moved to Chicago when she was 21.  She was working and going to school full time, and drinking. 

 

[16:55] You are the first person interviewed that has said they always knew they had a drinking problem, please explain.

 

She knew that when she started drinking at 12/13 years old that she was drinking to cover something up.  It was always a numbing agent for Liz, never a feel-good agent.  It was just the way I coped with everything.  Knowing she needed help she found an addictions counselor in Chicago.  Within the first session the counselor was telling her she was an alcoholic and addict, needed AA and to enter inpatient treatment. 

 

She continued to go to therapy, but did not enter into inpatient.  It was during this time that the sexual abuse from her childhood started to surface and her drinking and drugging intensified. 

 

[20:24] What was it like when these memories started to bubble up? 

 

Liz says this is when the downward spiral of her addiction really started to intensify.  She was still going to work and school, but was blacking out nightly.  If she didn’t go to bed drunk, she would have vivid night terrors. 

 

[22:23] Tell us about what it was like when you were meeting with the hypnotherapist.      

 

She assessed Liz, told her she needed AA and to stop drinking and basically told her she was not willing to work with her unless she stopped drinking.  Liz told her she was unwilling to stop drinking and insisted on the therapy.  The therapist agreed to proceed although she told her she may not get much out of it due to her alcohol consumption.  Liz showed up for every appointment, about twice a week for 6 months.  It was the most intense therapy Liz has ever gone through.  She relived the trauma and was able to heal from it. 

 

 

[24:45] What happened next?     

 

She continued to see the therapist, continued to drink, and she finished school.  Once she was done with school she moved to Illinois.  Her drinking//drugging slowed to the weekends, although she was still blacking out and her weekends were spent hungover.  She tried moderating.  She started breaking out in hives when she would drink.  It did not matter what she drank, or how much.  One drink would lead to hives from head to toe.  So, she started taking Claritin before she drank, so she could continue drinking without the hives.  Her hangovers started to get worse and last longer. 

 

She got engaged in 12/2015 and married in 8/2017.  July of 2017 was her bachelorette party weekend, and July 8, 2017 is her sobriety date. 

 

[31:16] What was it like in early sobriety?

 

She remembers being really scared to go anywhere, not wanting to explain anything to anyone.  Feelings were new to her and made her nervous.  She continued with her therapy during the first year of sobriety.  She did AA for about 6 months.  

 

[35:00] Talk to us about how acupuncture can be helpful in sobriety. 

    

Acupuncture can help release endorphins, increase serotonin levels, help get people off of anxiety meds, and help with overall cravings. 

 

[37:25] How has your life changed in sobriety?

 

She finally feels content, no longer feels restless. 

 

[40:10] What’s on your bucket list in sobriety?

 

Liz wants to travel; Australia and New Zealand are next on her list.  She would also like to find a good yoga retreat to attend.  She wants to help others and to be more open about her sobriety. 

  

[42:19] Rapid Fire Round

 

  1. Worst memory from drinking?

 

Ending up in the hospital in Memphis for alcohol poisoning, also waking up and not having memories.   

 

  1. Do you remember a specific ‘oh-shit’ moment?

 

When she couldn’t make it through a whole day of class without going across the street to the bar.  Waking up without a phone or wallet.  Getting arrested for underage drinking. 

 

  1. What’s your plan moving forward?

 

Being more open about my sobriety and using my acupuncture background to help other addicts.  Really being part of a good sober community. 

 

  1. What’s your favorite resource in recovery?

 

This podcast and hypnotherapy as well. 

 

  1. In regards to sobriety what is the best advice you’ve ever received?

 

You are not defined by your past traumas.  Drinking is not going to fix anything. 

 

  1. The best parting piece of advice you can give the listeners.

 

Work on your shit. 

 

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

 

Alcohol gives you hives, but you take a Claritin and drink anyways. 

 

Upcoming retreats:

Bozeman Retreat – August 14-18, 2019

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

You can find more information about these events here

Resources mentioned in this episode:

This episode is brought to you in support by Care/Of. For 25% off your first month of personalized Care/of vitamins, go to TakeCareOf.com and enter the promo code ELEVATOR

 

Babbel
This episode is brought to you by the language learning app Babbel and right now, my listeners can try Babbel for free.

 

Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free

Sobriety Tracker iTunes

Sobriety Tracker Android

Sober Selfies! - Send your Sober Selfie and your Success Story to info@recoveryelevator.com

 

“Recovery Elevator – It all starts from the inside-out.”

May 6, 2019

Nick, with 111 days sober, shares his story.

 

On today’s episode Paul discusses anxiety, depression and stress.   “These pains you feel are messengers. Listen to them.” ~ Rumi.    

 

Depression is when mental energies are stuck in the past, anxiety is when we are living in the future, and stress accumulates when the end goal is more important than the task at hand.   Liberation from all three of these dysfunctions resides in the present moment. 

 

There is an undeniable connection between alcohol and depression.  Remove alcohol and the bulk of melancholy should be lifted within a matter of months.  Anxiety levels should also return to baseline after removing alcohol from your life.  When we are primarily focused on the end outcome, and not the task at hand, we experience stress.  Stress can be devastating to the equanimity in the body.  The most powerful remedy to depression, anxiety, and stress is to ground yourself in the moment. 

 

SHOW NOTES

 

[10:40] Paul introduces Nick

 

Nick is 32 years old and lives in Vancouver, Canada.  He works in the career center at a university.  He has been married for 2 years.  For fun, he is still trying to figure that out in sobriety, but he enjoys having conversation and making connections with people. 

 

[13:20] Give us a little background about your drinking. 

 

Nick didn’t really start drinking until his early 20’s.  He says he liked to drink, that there never really was a time that he did not enjoy it.  He felt he could drink more than most and still be OK.  And what that ended up doing was it basically normalized drinking large amounts of alcohol, because he wasn’t getting sick or waking up with a hangover.  Things slowly escalated from there.

 

In 2010 Nick moved to Vancouver.  There were a few times when he decided that he didn’t like how much he was drinking, and he would just stop for a few months at a time. 

 

[17:00] What was the catalyst for you to decide to go a month or two without alcohol?

 

He went through a really messed up experience between his best friend and the person he was dating at the time.   He dealt with that experience by drinking.   What he came to realize was that alcohol just made him feel worse.   So, he distanced himself from those 2 people and from alcohol.  He went 3-4 months without drinking, not thinking he would never drink again, but more because he felt he needed a break from it. 

 

When Nick started to drink again, the next year or two, it wasn’t that bad.

But what came back very quickly was the familiar feeling that alcohol made him feel comfortable, safe, more confident. 

 

The thing that tipped Nick off to drinking becoming a problem was in order to feel normal or comfortable in a situation, he needed alcohol. 

 

[20:15] When did you realize that your drinking was a problem? 

 

It’s hard for him to pinpoint exactly when that happened.  It built very slowly over time.  It snowballed and it wasn’t until many years later that he realized that he had lost control.  

 

[22:05] When was the moment that you did stop and see that alcohol was the factor that was causing that unease in your life?    

 

Nick says there were lots of smaller moments, but when he really knew it, it was about 6 months after a good friend died from leukemia.  He started isolating and drinking alone. 

 

[25:50] Did you have a rock bottom moment?  How did you finally make the push forward into sobriety?     

 

Nick tried to moderate, which didn’t work.  He then started to go to counseling on a regular basis.  He was honest with his therapist about his drinking.   He started journaling which helped him to see why he was drinking.  He became more self-aware and was communicating better.  He was still sad and grieving.  Over the next year his drinking escalated.

 

Around September 2018 he was listening to a lot of podcasts and just knew that he had to give up drinking.  He came home one day, after listening to the RE podcast, took his earbuds out, and just cried.  Part of the reason he cried was because he realized that he was not alone. 

 

[34:05] When the tears came flowing, what did it feel like to fully lean in?    

 

Nick says it felt terrifying and he felt very vulnerable, but also so relieved.  That began a long series of day ones.   On December 1st he joined the Café’RE Facebook group.  After drinking a lot after a staff party on December 7, he has not picked up since. 

 

[41:30] What was the first week like, the first month?  How did you do it? 

    

The first few days were a little rough.   Because of all the journaling he had done he knew the hours that he needed to keep himself busy.  He changed the route he would take as he would walk home so that he would not be passing liquor stores.  He got connected and reached out to others in the group. 

 

[44:16] With 111 days what’s he biggest challenge you’ve encountered so far? 

 

The feeling of plateauing.  He’s sober and isn’t experiencing cravings, so the question of “what now”? 

 

[45:50] What was the Recovery Elevator Nashville event like?

 

It was great.  As soon as he heard about the Nashville event, he knew he had to try to get himself there. 

 

[48:30] What are you going to do next in recovery?

 

Nick would like to work with people in addiction and recovery.

  

[51:20] Rapid Fire Round

 

  1. Worst memory from drinking?

 

Waking up and realizing that you hurt someone you care about, but you can’t remember why, is the absolute worst feeling in the world. 

 

  1. Do you remember a specific ‘oh-shit’ moment?

 

The last night he drank.  It was though the scotch he was drinking was water.  It just wasn’t working anymore.    

 

  1. Best advice you’ve ever received? And what advice can you give to someone who is thinking about getting sober?

 

Be open and vulnerable, be willing to give and receive love.      

 

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

 

You go to slide a wine bottle under your couch, and you hear it hit another bottle, which hits another bottle.    

 

 

 

Upcoming retreats:

Bozeman Retreat – August 14-18, 2019

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

You can find more information about these events here

Resources mentioned in this episode:

This episode is brought to you in support by ZipRecruiter. Right now, my listeners can try ZipRecruiter for free. Visit Ziprecruiter.com/elevator

 

Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free

Sobriety Tracker iTunes

Sobriety Tracker Android

Sober Selfies! - Send your Sober Selfie and your Success Story to info@recoveryelevator.com

 

“Recovery Elevator – It all starts from the inside-out.”

Apr 29, 2019

Sami, with a sobriety date of July 21, 2018, shares her story.

 

On today’s podcast Paul discuses surrender.  What does is really mean to reach a point of surrendering?  It doesn’t have to be complicated.  Surrendering simply means yielding to your next stage in life.  As Paul mentioned on a previous podcast, addictions are no more than sign posts in life, and surrender is when we fully accept them and make, what is most likely to be the most important change in our life, quitting alcohol. 

 

Once we reach that moment when we realize that there are no more ways to moderate, when we clearly see that any attempt at moderation results in a dumpster fire, we usually find ourselves saying things like; f*ck it, I quit, I’m done, or I can’t do this anymore.  If you’ve ever muttered those words then congratulations!  You’ve hit what Paul calls the ‘now what’ milestone, which is huge.  This is when we enter into a moment of clarity and surrender. 

 

Surrendering is not a one and done thing.  Surrendering is something you will repeatedly do as you continue on your journey in sobriety.

 

 

SHOW NOTES

 

[11:35] Paul introduces Sami

 

Sami is 28 years old.  She lives in Prescott, Az.  She has a 9-year-old son, 2 wiener dogs, and a cat.  For fun Sami likes to hike/wander around the woods, do yoga and is into crystals. 

 

[13:00] Give us a little background about your drinking. 

 

Sami says she comes from a whole family of alcoholics.  She had her first beer at the age of 14.  She remembers being jealous of her older brothers, at the age of 13, because they could party and she was too young.  During her teenage years she smoked pot more than she drank.  When Sami was 17 her mom, who had a drug problem, passed away.  At the age of 19 Sami got pregnant with her son. 

 

When Sami turned 21, she went out to the bars, got wasted, felt horrible the following day, and said she would not do that again.  And she didn’t, for about a year.  She split up with the father of her son, reconnected with a high school girlfriend, and started going out.  She says her drinking progressed from, ‘I’m not drinking alone.”, to bringing home beer to drink alone.  She tried to hide being an alcoholic behind liking craft beer. 

 

When her son started asking her how many beers she had had she realized that drinking may be an issue. 

 

[19:00] When your son started asking you that question did you stop and think…this might not be right?    

 

When he would ask her that she would get irritated. 

 

[19:55] What through the next couple years up until your sobriety date in July 2018. 

 

Eventually she was drinking every day, and also driving.   Drinking and driving with her son in the car.  April 14, 2014, she went to visit a girlfriend and they hung out by the pool drinking.  On her way home, swerving along the way, she pulled over to ask her son if he was OK.  He replied he was, she continued, and about a mile from home she saw the flashing lights in her rear-view mirror.  She was handcuffed, taken to jail.  Her dad came and picked her son up.  It was the worst night of her life…her rock-bottom.  

 

[25:40] Bring us up to July 21, 2018.   

 

She got her DUI and had a restricted driver’s license.  She still didn’t fully get it.  After the DUI and after drinking she asked a friend to go get her cigarettes and he got in an accident on the way.  She blamed herself for the accident…if she hadn’t been drinking, she would not have asked him to go.  This was her last drink.  

 

[28:55] Walk us through what happened after July 21, 2018.   

 

 Sami had to humble herself to ask for help getting herself to work and her son to school.  She had to get comfortable staying at home.  She started to learn more about alcohol and started to feel better 

 

 [32:15] Talk to us about how you got through the intense cravings in the early months. 

 

She had cravings but she learned that they are fleeting and that they would go away.  She started to realize that so many of the things she thought would not be enjoyable without alcohol were in fact more enjoyable.  

 

[35:25] How has your life changed without alcohol?

    

For the better.  She has more confidence and likes herself more.  She is a better mom and her relationship with her son is better. 

 

[37:45] What does a typical day in your sobriety look like? 

 

She wakes up, gets her son to school and herself to work.  Gets off work and goes home.  Goes to yoga some evenings.  She draws, reads and does a lot of art projects.  She stays away from things that may trigger her.  She surrounds herself with girls that are good for her sobriety.  She spends time with her family, who are also sober and understand. 

 

[40:24] Rapid Fire Round

 

 

  1. When was your oh-shit moment?

 

I would say it was Christmas 2017.  I drank a bottle of Jameson and got so wasted I don’t remember if my son had any fun. 

 

  1. What is you plan in sobriety moving forward?

 

I’m really excited about re-doing things that I have totally screwed up, like my son’s birthday.  Continuing my yoga practice and continuing finding myself. 

 

  1. What’s your favorite resource in sobriety?

 

The Recovery Elevator podcast.  Tell Better Stories on Instagram. 

 

  1. In regards to sobriety what’s the best advice you’ve ever received?

 

One day at a time.  If you’re going to drink again, play the tape forward. 

 

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

 

If you wake up in the morning and half to ask your 8-year-old son, “what the hell happened last night?”. 

 

 

 

Upcoming retreats:

Bozeman Retreat – August 14-18, 2019

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

You can find more information about these events here

Resources mentioned in this episode:

 

Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free

Sobriety Tracker iTunes

Sobriety Tracker Android

Sober Selfies! - Send your Sober Selfie and your Success Story to info@recoveryelevator.com

 

“Recovery Elevator – It all starts from the inside-out.”

Apr 22, 2019

James, with a sobriety date of November 12, 2016, shares his story.

 

Recovery Elevator is on Instagram!  Please follow Paul and Ben here .

 

On today’s podcast Paul discuses relapse.  For some, and Paul has only met a few, relapse isn’t part of their story.  But for the vast majority it is, and it isn’t something to be ashamed of.  Spontaneous sobriety is rare.  Paul feels that the word ‘relapse’ is another word in recovery, similar to the word ‘alcoholic’, that needs to be thrown out.  The word ‘relapse’ has implications of failure. 

 

When we drink again, after having made the internal declaration not to, we are simply doing more field research, learning lessons along the way.  If you find yourself in a continuous cycle of field research, self-compassion is key.   Stop placing success and failure parameters on whether you drank last night or not.  When we start addressing what we are using alcohol to cover up than relapse will become less frequent and even a thing of the past. 

 

When you do find yourself on stable footing, beware of the 3 most dangerous words on this journey…I got this. 

 

 

 

SHOW NOTES

 

**Listeners you can listen to James’ first interview back on episode 105 when he had 74 days of sobriety, today he has 850 days. 

 

[8:05] Paul introduces James

 

James is 31 years old and lives in New Jersey with his wife and their pomsky, Milo.    He works in Manhattan.  For fun he likes to golf, go to the gym, and hang with his wife and pup.     

 

[10:50] Give us a little background about your drinking. 

 

James started drinking when he was 13, stealing beers and wine coolers from the liquor cabinet.  In high school he was not a big drinker, although he remembers how drinking helped make him feel comfortable. 

 

He started college, on a golf scholarship, became good friends with one of his teammates that was a Christian, started going to bible study and church and didn’t drink his entire freshman year.   Later, one of his teammates from England, was graduating so they threw a party and James drank.  He picked up right where he left off and the next three years of college he was binge drinking and dabbled in drugs. 

 

The spring semester of his senior year his coach called him in to his office and told him not to come to practice anymore, that he was coming in smelling like liquor and bringing the rest of the team down.  This was the first time that he realized his drinking was affecting other people. 

 

[13:44] Can you tell us what it felt like to have someone on the outside call you out on your drinking. 

 

Immediately James was embarrassed and ashamed.  He walked out of the office feeling sad and like he had let everyone down.  He was able to curb his drinking enough to not be a burden and make it through the last 3 months playing golf. 

 

2010 James was in Barcelona, caddying at a nice country club, the 2nd day he caddied he met a man that offered him a job which he took a week later.  This was the beginning of the end.  From the time he graduated at 21 years old to 28 years old, when he got sober, it was a quick progression of drugs and alcohol.  In the span of 5 years James lost his Grandfather, his uncle and his Dad.  Instead of dealing with the losses he used alcohol and drugs. 

 

At 27 he was arrested for possession of cocaine, theft, and disturbing the peace.  This leads to an intervention by his family and his Mom gives him the option to go to rehab or see a therapist.  He picked the therapist.  He went through a number of therapists and his girlfriend of 2 years left him during this time.    

 

[22:40] What did it feel like that moment when you told yourself you were done. 

 

He immediately felt a sense of relief.  He reached out to a friend from college, that he used to party with, but from his posts on Facebook knew that he had gotten sober.  At this time neither his family, or his girlfriend, would talk to him.  He went to see his friend from college the next day.  Talking to him helped, and he also started 12 weeks of IOP.  Everyday he would ask himself, is this going to honor my father.  He knew he had to make some changes and he firmly believes his father died to save his life. 

 

[24:45] Once you surrendered, how did you make it one week, one month, how did you do it?

 

One day at a time.  James says he was never a half-in guy, so once he decided to get sober, he dove in.  He found the RE podcast, started reading a lot, went to AA, and was going to IOP and therapy 3 times a week.  Very early he burned the ships with everyone, which he says was very therapeutic.  He could finally breath and no longer had all the guilt and the shame. 

 

[28:00] What was the transition from drinking/partying like you did, to the clean and sober life, like?   

 

James said it was hard, but that it was almost like he was going back to the person he was the whole time, and it was a relief.  In the last 6 months he shifted from playing the victim and feels he is becoming exactly who he is supposed to be. 

 

[33:05] Talk to us about your year 1 and year 2 and the differences between the two.      

 

James says he definitely had the classic pink cloud and felt great.  At the end of year 1 he started to struggle a bit but after he hit the year mark, he felt rejuvenated.   He booked the trip to Peru with Café RE and between months 13-15 things took another turn.  Things felt dark and he was asking himself if this was what he got sober for.  It was then he had a conversation with a friend, and with Paul, about ayahuasca and stayed in Peru to attend a ceremony.  James says it wasn’t a magic bullet but that ayahuasca, hiking Machu Picchu, and getting married in October, is what changed his attitude about everything. 

 

[35:15] On a group chat we were on you said one of the lessons you learned was that you no longer have to be the biggest guy in the room, talk to us about that.    

The first night, of the first ceremony he did, there was a gentleman there from New Zealand who was bigger than James.  (Who is 6’3” and 220 pounds, which he had always identified himself by.)  During the ceremony James was weeping and this gentleman came up behind him, put his arms around him, held him like a baby, and told him to just let it all out.  It was at this time he let go of feeling like always had to me the biggest guy in the room.  He was supposed to do 3 ceremonies but after the first one he told the shaman that he had gotten what he needed and didn’t do the remaining 2. 

 

[39:30] Talk to us about Cardamone Coaching.

 

Even as a kid James knew he wanted to help people.  Wanting to become a recovery coach was something he discussed with Paul while in Peru.  He realized fear was what was holding him back and that that was all bullshit, so he got certified to be a recovery coach.  His goal is to help people in recovery by using his own experience. 

James’ coaching website is: https://www.cardamonecoaching.com/ .

 

[45:06] I saw your registration come in for the Bozeman retreat, what are you looking forward to at this retreat?

 

Going back to Bozeman, it’s a change of pace from New York City.  Seeing some of the same people and meeting new people.   The retreats have changed James’ life.  

 

[47:25] Rapid Fire Round

 

 

  1. What is you plan in sobriety moving forward?

 

Continue doing what I’m doing, stay the course, one day at a time, and helping people. 

 

  1. What’s your favorite resource in sobriety?

 

Reading, I must have read 35 books in the last 2 ½ years, reading has really opened me up to different things. 

 

  1. In regards to sobriety what’s the best advice you’ve ever received?

 

It gets better and you never have to feel this way again if you don’t pick up a drink or a drug. 

 

  1. What parting piece of guidance can you give to listeners?

 

You are good enough

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

 

If you get arrested outside of a nightclub with drugs in your pocket, a stolen credit card and no shoes on. 

 

 

 

 

You can sign up for a FREE 5-day Recovery Elevator video course here

 

 

Upcoming retreats:

Bozeman Retreat – August 14-18, 2019

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

You can find more information about these events here

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Babbel
This episode is brought to you by the language learning app Babbel and right now, my listeners can try Babbel for free. Download the app, or text Elevator to 48-48-48
 
Green Chef
For $50 off your first order, go to www.greenchef.us/elevator

 

Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free

Sobriety Tracker iTunes

Sobriety Tracker Android

Sober Selfies! - Send your Sober Selfie and your Success Story to info@recoveryelevator.com

 

“Recovery Elevator – It all starts from the inside-out.”

Apr 15, 2019

Brad, with a sobriety date of August 31, 2018, shares his story.

Paul talks about the ‘now’ and ways we can ground ourselves while we find ourselves taking this thing one day at a time.  At some period in our journey we will find ourselves logging our days in our tracker like it ‘ain’t no thing’.  Then there are other days when we wake up and keeping the mind in check can be a constant struggle.   Paul shares some of his own favorite personal techniques that he uses to ground himself. 

  • Acknowledge what is really happening.
  • Think in terms of “we” rather than “I”
  • Take your shoes off and walk barefooted outside.
  • You are nature…take time to go out in your natural setting, nature.
  • Slow down.
  • Do not multitask
  • Pay close attention to the body
  • Go from saying, “I can get through this’, to saying, “I AM getting through this”.
  • Go with the gut.
  • Last one is I tell myself “Dude, Paul…this isn’t you!”

If you have a grounding technique that you use, that isn’t listed here, email it to Paul and put “Grounding Techniques” in the subject line. 

 

 

SHOW NOTES

 

[12:10]  Paul introduces Brad

 

Brad is 31 years old and is from Fort Wayne, Indiana.  He is a traveling salesperson and sells health care products to providers.  He is married and has a daughter.  For fun he likes to golf and recently has joined a kick boxing gym.  

 

[14:15] Give us a little background about your drinking. 

 

Brad was a good kid all through high school.  At 17 he had a job as a barback where he learned a lot about alcohol.  He was pretty much alcohol free all through college.  When he was 20 years old he went to England and that is when he started to drink, not having too many sober days while there. 

 

Later, at 21 years old, he is back in the states working as a resident assistant and is spending as much time as he can at the bar.  Later he moved back home into his parent’s basement and was sneaking off to the bars, rather than spending time with them, as much as he could.  This is where he met his wife.   

 

They got married and, on their honeymoon, because he had had so much to drink, he almost drowned himself.  He continued to drink the duration of the honeymoon.  Fast forward to his wife being pregnant with their daughter, a lot of changes taking place in their relationship and he is no longer the focus of it. 

 

After his daughter was born, he was laid off from his job.  He spent a lot of his nights, while helping care for his daughter, drinking heavily.  In January of 2018 his grandfather committed suicide.  Brad found another job and then there was a spiral from June to August, 2018.  August 31, 2018, he got pulled over for drunk driving.  He hit his bottom in a jail cell.  The next day his dad took him to his first AA meeting.  After appearing in front of a judge he his charges where dropped. 

 

[19:40] Talk to us about a couple moments where the writing was on the wall (before your sobriety date).

 

He missed a flight home because he was drinking in the airport bar.  Spending too much time drinking after golf. 

 

[23:15] Did you ever try and quit before your sobriety date?

 

He tried to moderate, but never felt that the problem was great enough to quit. 

 

[26:25] Walk us through the 3 options you gave yourself after your DUI.

 

Laying on the cot in jail, after just calling his wife who was driving all over Fort Wayne looking for him, he realized he had 3 options.  He could run, he could figure out his life was meaningless, or he could get help.  So he picked getting help.  Getting to a meeting the next day and, if his wife didn’t divorce him, he could live in his parent’s guest bedroom until they figure it out.  For 2 months after that he was going to AA meetings every day, making living amends to his wife every day, and going to work.  On day 4 he found the Recovery Elevator podcast. 

 

[31:25] Talk to us about burning the ships with your mom, dad, and wife. 

 

His wife was pissed, his parents were in shock.  He told them how he missed flights because of drinking, and how he needed to have a drink to help him sleep.  His parents were in tears, but supportive.  His wife told him that if he ever drank again, she was taking their daughter and would be gone.

   

[33:37] How did it feel when you let your parents and your wife know what’s going on with you?    

 

A small weight was lifted, but there was an extreme sense of guilt.  It felt freeing but he also knew he had a lot of work to do. 

 

[34:45] Talk to us how the charges were dropped and then the bomb you got about the charges on January 31, 2019. 

 

He appeared in court, expecting the worst, and was told ‘case dismissed’.  That was not one of the options he was prepared for.  His attorney told him to go live his life.  His new life was to not touch alcohol, continue with his sobriety and his meetings, and that’s what he did.  Sometime later he got a call from a friend, who is an attorney, that infored him that his case was back up.  His case had been refiled.  He was booked, back in and out of jail, sober this time.  He was ready to accept responsibility.  He called his employer and told them that he may need something to ‘blow into’ so he can drive.  He realized that he may lose his job over this.  He was fighting and was doing it sober. 

 

[39:26] I feel like this is going to be a good thing for you Brad, how do feel about it?

 

Brad agrees.  It has made him live day to day.  It has made him mad at alcohol.  He has stopped focusing on himself and more on his wife.  It has helped him get through his 4th and 5th step. 

 

[41:45] How did you get and stay sober?

 

He did a lot of candy eating.  He did his best at doing the 90 AA meetings in 90 days.  He tried not to put any pressure on his wife to forgive him.  He tried to show what he wanted through his actions and not his words.  He goes to a therapist/marriage counselor.     

 

[43:47] What do you feel you were using alcohol to cover up?

 

He says he’s awkward and that there was some abuse growing up.  Possibly some depression.  Mostly it was just to find connections with other people.    

 

[47:50] Rapid Fire Round

 

 

  1. When was your ah-ha moment?

 

When I was in an airport boozing with a pilot. 

 

  1. What have you learned about yourself on this journey?

 

That it is OK to ask for help and OK to be vulnerable. 

 

  1. What is you plan in sobriety moving forward?

 

I want to be a resource to help people. 

 

  1. In regards to sobriety what’s the best advice you’ve ever received?

 

Stop kicking your own butt. 

 

  1. What parting piece of guidance can you give to listeners?

 

Never be afraid to reach out, you are never alone. 

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

 

If you switch from Maker’s Mark to vodka on the back nine because you think you play better with vodka in your system than whiskey.   

 

 

 

 

Upcoming retreats:

Bozeman Retreat – August 14-18, 2019

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

You can find more information about these events here

Resources mentioned in this episode:

 

 
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“Recovery Elevator – It all starts from the inside-out.”

Apr 8, 2019

Libby, with 112 days of sobriety, shares her story.

Paul talks about a trend he noticed in the airport bookstore.  Amongst the ’20 best sellers’ there were several books with clear, unambiguous titles.  Our society is collectively starting to wake up and are looking for ways to unf*ck ourselves.  He says that all of these books, including the one he is currently writing, are not fulfilling a trend or a niche, but that it’s a movement. 

https://newrepublic.com/article/153153/age-anxiety

Paul recently read an article titled the Age of Anxiety in the New Republic,

According to studies by the National Institute of Mental Health, nearly 20 percent of Americans experience an anxiety disorder in a given year; over 30 percent experience an anxiety disorder over the course of their lifetimes. And the rate is rising: The American Psychiatric Association, in a May study drawing from a survey of 1,000 American adults, diagnosed a statistically significant increase in national anxiety since 2017.

But listeners listen closely, there is nothing fundamentally wrong with you.  Never has been, never will be. This anxiety is a good thing. This collective state of unrest will eventually show us the way.

This jittery national mood has given rise to what Rebecca Jennings at Vox has dubbed “anxiety consumerism”—the rise of a plethora of products, from fidget spinners to essential-oil sprays, to weighted blankets.  Perhaps the most well-known product to fall into this anxiety consumerism category is alcohol.

Those who struggle with addiction are the trailblazers in the collective unf*ck yourself movement. Not just for those who grapple with addiction to alcohol, but for everyone. 

 

 

SHOW NOTES

 

[7:15] Libby how long have you been sober? 

 

She has been sober since October 23, 2018, giving her 112 days of sobriety. 

 

[7:40] In these last 112 days what is the biggest challenge you’ve encountered? 

 

She says that the cravings and the obsession to drink in the first couple months was definitely the toughest time. 

 

[9:00] Paul Introduces Libby.

 

Libby is 32 years old and lives in Louisville, Kentucky.  She is an interior designer and is currently waiting tables at night.  She has been married for 5 years, has no kids, has a dog named Boomerang, and a cat named Brice.  For fun she works out, does crafts, is decorating her house, and enjoys hiking when the weather is nice. 

 

[11:05] Give us a little background about your drinking. 

 

Libby had her first drink at 15 and throughout high school she drank on the weekends.  By early 20s she was drinking daily, but still highly functional, holding two jobs.  She was coasting by until 2017 when she got fired from a job.  Libby says this is when her drinking ‘got wheels’. 

 

[12:30] What led you to seeking out alcohol to alleviate the pain?

 

She was fired suddenly, in a hateful way, and she had never gone through anything like that.  She was devastated and started drinking all day.  After a couple of weeks, she was experiencing morning tremors, or shakes, which she had never experienced before.  By the end of 2017 she was drinking in the mornings just to function.  During this time, she tried out AA a couple times and decided she just wasn’t ready.

 

[14:50] What was it like when you went to the AA meeting?

 

Before going into her first AA meeting Libby had the shakes so bad that she had to have a shot of alcohol.  She didn’t really have any intention to stop drinking, she just wanted control over it.  She wanted to stop drinking during the day and get control of her life again and just be a functional drinker.  Fast forward to 2018 and she had managed to cut back on her drinking, only drinking at night.  That lasted a couple months.  In April 2018 she found herself drunk at work and went home and told her husband that she needed to get into a treatment program, that drinking had taken control again. 

 

The next day, after drinking, she tried to get into an inpatient treatment program.  The first place turned her away because they didn’t take her insurance, the second place allowed her to stay for 3 days for ‘medical detox’ and then released her due to her insurance as well.  After being dry for 3 days she thought she had things under control, but she picked up right where she left off. 

 

[21:40] Take us through the next steps in your journey.

 

Not having a day job Libby was able to drink all day.  After about 2 weeks her husband, tired of coming home and finding her drunk on the couch, packed his bags and left.  He called her best friend and told her that Libby was in trouble, but that he didn’t know how to help her.  Her best friend made some phone calls and found a free center, The Healing Place, that would take Libby.  She stayed there for 4 days while she detoxed and went home.  Back at home she stayed sober for 11 days and then again was right back to where she left off.  After showing up at work drunk and hitting what Libby calls her first bottom, she went back to The Healing Place and stayed for 30 days. 

 

[26:35] Take us from when you got out after your 30 days up to your sobriety date. 

 

After about 74 days of sobriety, meeting with her sponsor and going to 3 AA meetings a day Libby found herself at the liquor store buying a bottle without giving it any thought.  Looking at this as a ‘slip’ she got right back on the wagon and back to her meetings.  Sober for another 46 days she then relapsed, drinking for 6 days straight.  This was her 2nd bottom, this binder ended on October 22, 2018 and she has been sober ever since. 

 

 

[28:40] How do you look at those ‘relapses’?    

 

As lessons, she learned that they start in her head first.  Now when her thoughts start going in that direction, she recognizes it and has a new method to deal with it. 

 

[33:15] Why do you think you drank?

 

She said that in the beginning it was just because she enjoyed it.  During her 20s she had a lot of trauma and it helped her feel better.  Drinking became a habit, then she physically depended on it. 

 

[34:40] Paul and Libby discuss what steps she can take to protect her sobriety while her husband continues to drink. 

 

[40:55] I’ve seen where sobriety thing is contagious, what are your thoughts on that?

 

Libby agrees, attraction rather than promotion. 

 

[42:50] What have you learned about yourself in this journey?

 

She has learned she is a lot stronger than she thought she was. 

 

[43:30] Rapid Fire Round

 

 

  1. What was your absolute worst memory from drinking?

 

Libby describes her last couple days of drinking.

 

  1. What is your plan in sobriety moving forward?

 

I am going to continue working the AA program and working with my sponsor and I want to eventually help other people stay sober. 

 

  1. In regards to sobriety what’s the best advice you’ve ever received?

 

Don’t believe the lies. 

 

  1. What parting piece of guidance can you give to listeners?

 

Give AA a shot.   

 

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

 

You drink mouthwash in the morning to try and get rid of the shakes before work. 

 

 

 

A pint of beer takes 15 minutes off your life

https://www.ksbw.com/article/wine-beer-early-death-extra-glass/26532630

For someone in their 40’s every glass of alcohol above the suggested weekly threshold of 5 shortens their life by 15 minutes. Alcohol is shit.

 

 

 

Upcoming retreats:

Bozeman Retreat – August 14-18, 2019

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

You can find more information about these events here

Resources mentioned in this episode:

This episode is brought to you in support by Robinhood. Right now, Robinhood is giving my listeners free stock such as Apple, Ford or Sprint to help build your portfolio. Signup at elevator.robinhood.com

 

 

Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free

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Sober Selfies! - Send your Sober Selfie and your Success Story to info@recoveryelevator.com

 

“Recovery Elevator – It all starts from the inside-out.”

Apr 1, 2019

Ashley, with 192 days of sobriety, shares her story.

Paul talks about how alcohol is the invitation.  What is this invitation?  It’s called addiction.  Depending on how you RSVP you could have a life filled with infinite joy.  The fact that you are listening to this podcast right now is a good clue as to how you’re going to RSVP.  At first the invitations may not show up with enough frequency to connect the dots.  But, sooner or later, these invitations will start to show up more frequently, once a year, once every 6 months, once a week, once a day in every aspect of our lives.  For many that struggle with addiction they ignore this invitation their entire lives and it is not pretty.  If we stick to this long enough it will become clear that our addiction is the best thing that has happened for us. 

For those of you listening, you have earned your invitation.  Keep in mind the pain and suffering required to initiate this positive change in behind you.  This thing called life, if it hasn’t already, is about to get good.  So how will you RSVP to this invitation? 

 

SHOW NOTES

 

[12:30] Paul Introduces Ashley.

 

Ashley lives in Chicago, IL with her sister and their 2 dogs.  She is single and is 31 years old.  She recently finished cosmetology school and is currently an apprentice to become a hair stylist at a salon in the city.   For fun Ashley likes to cook, enjoys music and going to concerts, power lifting, meditation, and is back playing soccer. 

 

[14:30] Give us a little background about your drinking. 

 

She was 13/14 years old the first time she got drunk, in her neighbors’ basement.  She remembers going home and telling her mom that she had been drinking, and that she got sick.  During high school she hung out with a lot of different crowds so went to, and drank at, a lot of parties.  She says she knew right away that she had a problem.  From the moment she would start drinking she would fixate on how she could drink more. 

 

When she got into college, she hit the ground running with partying.  She did a lot of partying and blacking out, had a lot of fun and didn’t get into any sever trouble, which she says, she thinks is why she continued to drink like she did.  In the back of her mind she was telling herself that once she was done with college things would change and she would grow up. 

 

After college she moved to Chicago and continued to drink on the weekends (Thursday-Sunday), which felt normal to her.  When she was 25, she woke up one morning, grabbed her phone, and Googled “what is an alcoholic?”. 

 

At 27, after a relationship that ended badly, she found herself in a super dark place.  She was depressed, having panic attacks, eating disorder flair ups, drinking, and drugging.  She managed to pull herself out of that dark place, and to prove to herself that she didn’t have a problem she didn’t drink for 30 days. 

 

[22:15] What was it like when you did prove it to yourself and not drink for 30 days?    

 

She felt she had it under control, although she continued to do drugs.  Then she slowly started drinking again until she was drinking more than she was before the 30 days.  She started blacking out every time she drank. 

 

After a really bad incident with her ex she walked into AA.  She made it 65 days before she went back out for another year and ½.  That year and ½ it got even worse, she was drinking hard and using a lot of drugs. 

 

On July 23, 2018 she came clean with her doctor and walked back into AA where she found an amazing group of women and her home group.      

 

[28:37] Comment a little more about honesty. 

 

Because of her issues with depression and anxiety her whole life she had been in/out of going to therapists.  She said she always lied to them about her alcohol/drug use.  After also being diagnosed bi-polar she knew she had to come clean with her doctors. 

 

[32:15] Why do you think you drank?

 

She said that to begin with, alcoholism runs in her family.  She wanted to escape from the feeling of having to micromanage her up/down feelings all the time and that unfortunately she thinks she was just made for it. 

 

[36:00] How did you do it?  You talked about AA, what else did you do to get sober?     

 

She stopped going to the places where she always drank, like concerts and bars.  She sought out a higher power.  She started running.  She made sure she got to her AA meetings and listened to the podcast, of course. 

 

[38:00] Tell us how you got through your week-long family reunion during the early days of your sobriety.

 

With about a week of sobriety she tried to look at the trip as a way to take advantage of the beautiful nature, instead of a big party.  She listened to podcasts and hiked.  With only a week of sobriety she wasn’t comfortable telling her family yet, and she was terrified of failing if she did. 

 

[42:15] After burning the ships on FB you mentioned you got reactions you didn’t expect, what kind of reactions did you expect??

 

She thought that people really wouldn’t care, or that they would think that it would change who she is.  She didn’t expect all the positive response. 

 

[43:30] Talk to us about some wins in sobriety. 

 

She can fly with out hitting the airport bar first.  She can go to concerts and remember everything.  She can go out with friends and have fun without drinking. 

 

[44:50] What is something you learned about yourself during this journey? 

 

She is super sensitive and can feel others emotions which used to be scary, but now that she is sober, she has learned how to use it to help other people. 

 

 

[46:38] Rapid Fire Round

 

 

  1. What was your absolute worst memory from drinking?

 

My mom had surgery one time and we were in the recovery room and I was so hungover, and probably still drunk, from the night before that I threw up all over the hospital room. 

 

  1. What was your ‘oh-shit’ moment, indicating that alcohol had to go?

 

The morning I woke up and just knew I couldn’t keep doing this. 

 

  1. What is your plan in sobriety moving forward?

 

To keep building a network.  Keep working the steps and stay in AA.  To keep on doing what I’m doing, one day at a time. 

 

  1. In regards to sobriety what’s the best advice you’ve ever received?

 

To take everything one day at a time.    

 

  1. What parting piece of guidance can you give to listeners?

 

Avoid things that are triggering to you and strive to do things that are healthy and look for self-care.

 

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

 

You constantly find yourself keeping tabs on other peoples’ drinking. 

 

 

 

 

 

Upcoming retreats:

Bozeman Retreat – August 14-18, 2019

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

You can find more information about these events here

Resources mentioned in this episode:

 

Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free

Sobriety Tracker iTunes

Sobriety Tracker Android

Sober Selfies! - Send your Sober Selfie and your Success Story to info@recoveryelevator.com

 

“Recovery Elevator – It all starts from the inside-out.”

Mar 25, 2019

Dr. Sue Morter, talks to us about how our bodies and minds have the capacity to heal themselves if we allow it.

Registration is now live for the Recovery Elevator retreat in Bozeman, Montana this upcoming August.  You can find more information about this event here

Paul discusses addiction and how there are hundreds of definitions for what addiction is.   He has covered several of them on this podcast already, and covers many more in the book that he is currently writing. Some definitions are scientific. Some are psychological. Some explain the disease theory.

He brings up another definition that, in his opinion, may be the simplest and most accurate. Paul suggests that addiction(s) are nothing more than signposts in life. Addictions are nudges from the body, your internal and external environments, that signify that a change needs to occur.

Many people struggling with addiction ignore these internal and external cues their entire lives, and this gets ugly. There are signposts everywhere in life.  Paul’s advice? Get out of the way and let life happen.

The content that Dr. Sue Morter writes about in her book, The Energy Codes, which was released about a week ago, is profound.  (You can find the link here .)  She explains through quantum science how we can use our own energies to heal ourselves if we let it happen. Be prepared to have your mind blown.

 

 

SHOW NOTES

 

[7:44] Paul Introduces Dr. Sue.

 

Dr. Sue is an international speaker, master of bioenergetic medicine, and a quantum field visionary. She explains how quantum science and spirituality are speaking the same language. Dr. Sue redirects the flow of energy patterns in the body to activate full human potential. Through her presentations, seminars, retreats, which Paul attended one this past February in Colorado, and her book The Energy Codes, Dr. Sue illuminates the relationship of quantum science and energy medicine, as well as the elevation of human consciousness and life mastery.  In the book The Energy Codes, and at her retreats and conferences, she teaches individuals how to clear subconscious memory blockages.

 

[9:45] What is addiction? What causes it, and can it be overcome Dr. Sue? 

 

Dr. Sue is about the flow of energy in the body. If the energy is flowing in the body then the body is healing itself.  What happens with addiction is that there are sets of circuits that are supposed to be connecting our enteric system, meaning our digestive, hormonal, and chemical balance system, with our heart, with our mind. We're supposed to be one big communication system, everything having a check and balance on everything else. 

 

What happens is we have a tendency to kind of land and splat when we get here. We land in this life and our mind goes one way, our body goes another way, and our breath goes another way, and we're kind of not operating on all of our cylinders because of that.

 

Addiction happens when we bypass certain aspects of our own personal power, and we reach outwardly for some kind of reassurance, whether it's an addiction to an emotion, an addiction to needing to know the future, or to control things, an addiction then later turns into chemical addiction, substance abuse, those kinds of things.

 

[13:08] What do you feel about addictions, and can we overcome them?

 

She says we can absolutely overcome them. In fact, she feels that they are in place to reveal to us where we are here to evolve. We come into this life for a reason, and the addiction itself shows up in a certain pattern.  Dr. Sue says it's an avenue to our wholeness, not a problem. It's just a very intense solution.

 

[14:37] Earlier I talked about addiction being a signpost, almost an invitation of where to go next in life, and that many of us miss this. Can you comment on that a little bit?

 

We miss the lamp post, the light house, because we're so consumed in guilt, and shame, and fear because we start to observe our addictive patterns, and we start to try to outrun them even faster because we are afraid that something is inherently wrong. That whole sensation is generated because the mind is not connected to the rest of who we are.

 

When we do see the light post, the sign post, everything shifts. When we don't see it it's because we haven't created enough of a vibrational frequency to get the mind's attention yet.

 

[17:16] Talk to us about how disconnection can lead to addiction.  

 

When we land and we splat, we come up from the splat attached to the mind. We are attached to the mind. It's important to realize that we are not the mind. We have a mind, but we are so infused and inter-meshed with it that we think it's who we are.  Bear in mind that the mind is based in duality, and the mind's job is to separate things, to see the differences, to make distinctions.  If we're attached to the mind, we inherently feel different and distinct from other things. When we're attached to the heart, or to the soul, or to the truth of who we are, our true essential selves, we are connected, vibrationally speaking, to nature, and to everyone else, and to all that exists.

 

When we are disconnected to our heart, and our deep wisdom, we don't experience ourselves as wise, loving, brilliant, smart, and enough to meet the bill. What happens instead is we divert, we deflect, and the energy moves around this area.  The next thing you know we're looking for an imitation. We're looking for some other sense of self that gets hidden in our activities, or our substances.

 

[21:40] Talk to us about the trap door.

 

This energy that's rising up through the body that either does or does not pass through our own personal identity on its way through to love, and to manifesting the life that we would choose to have, it's rising up through the primitive brain and it hits a trap door that's either open or closed. That trap door is closed if we've experienced too many things in our past that we couldn't really resolve. 

 

[25:00] What advice, or what do you have to say to people who, the first month of sobriety, first six months of sobriety, they feel these uncomfortable emotions? (PAWS) Do they run away from them? Do they go towards them? What are these emotions, and what do you recommend they do when they experience them?

 

It's not that the body generates those emotions when you stop drinking. Those emotions were always there. You just couldn't sense them or perceive them, because you were either running from them, or you were numbing them out. They are your power. Your power is inside of those emotions that currently might feel a little intense, or a lot intense. And we can learn how to grab ahold of those energies and get them back into the flow, breathe them into the flow that's trying to happen in our system that keeps us connected.

 

 [29:10] If we feel a meltdown coming do we squash it? What do we do? What are they?

 

Dr. Sue 100% suggests that we lean into it. The body is trying to get us to implode back into the soul.  Just by allowing ourselves to sit in presence with what is rising is a victory beyond what we were able to do before.

 

[35:48] Can you talk a little bit about how everything that happens, even on a day to day basis, is there for our advantage?

 

All of it is ultimately serving you. You are made of the entire cosmos, and you are packed into a body. And more of it is arriving every second, and it's 100% in support of your awakening to this truth, to your greatness, to your magnificence. Everything that happens in your life is guiding you, and steering you toward a great shakedown that will make you let go of being attached to the mind and this idea that you're a separate self, and accept, and receive, and perceive this amazing support that is constantly here supporting you toward you realizing a different version of life altogether.

 

[38:50] You did an incredible job of explaining how science, quantum physics, is blending with spirituality, with a higher power. Talk more about this.

 

What's happening is science and spirituality are kind of meeting on the same page and recognizing that there is a great unifying presence, and each of us has the opportunity to allow that to guide us in particular ways.

 

[42:06] Dr. Sue walks listeners through exercises so they can build circuits and create new connections, inside the body, on their own. 

 

 

[55:13] Listeners, Dr. Sue’s book The Energy Codes was just released about a week ago and you can find it here.   

 

She also has incredible retreats, taking people to sacred sites all over the world, along with teaching all kinds of coursework across the country.   For more information you can go to DrSueMorter.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Upcoming retreats:

Bozeman Retreat – August 14-18, 2019

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

You can find more information about these events here

Resources mentioned in this episode:

 

Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free

Sobriety Tracker iTunes

Sobriety Tracker Android

Sober Selfies! - Send your Sober Selfie and your Success Story to info@recoveryelevator.com

 

“Recovery Elevator – It all starts from the inside-out.”

Mar 18, 2019

Mina, with a sobriety date of May 30, 2017, shares his story.

You can sign up for a FREE 5-day Recovery Elevator video course here

Paul discusses the most controversial word he has encountered in AA.  The word is recovered, as in your addiction to alcohol is behind you.  Although recovered is mentioned in the books of AA, after Paul said the word in an AA meeting, he noticed a shift in the energy in the room.  Ty (who has been editing the podcasts for over 150 episodes straight…Thank you Ty!), found the word recovered mentioned over 20 times in The Big Book and the Twelve and Twelve. 

So why is the word recovered so controversial?  Is recovered even such a thing? 

 

 

SHOW NOTES

 

[10:30] Paul Introduces Mina.

 

Mina with a sobriety date of May 30, 2017, is 37 years old and is from Stockholm, Sweden.  He is single and has no children.  He is a software engineer.  For fun Mina likes to read, visit museums and exhibitions, and spend time in libraries.      

 

[12:20] Give us a little background about your drinking. 

 

Mina had his first real drink at the age of 17, it was his first high school party and the first time he blacked out.  From 17 to 25 he was drinking hard.  He was drinking on his own, drinking Friday to Monday.  During those years he didn’t really mix drinks, he would have a couple beers and go straight to vodka or tequila.  After a couple years it was just bottles of vodka or tequila, and he was drinking alone.  After a humiliating experience in 2003 he tried to regulate his drinking for the next 3 years, which did not go well. 

 

In 2007 he decided to move back to South Africa, where his parents were living.  Before leaving his friends threw him a going away party, which ended with Mina waking up in a hospital emergency room and not knowing how he got there.  For the first time he realized he had a drinking problem.  The next 11 years he says he was a textbook dry drunk. 

 

On May 29, 2017 Mina had his last drink.  The following day he walked into an AA meeting, was done fighting, and introduced himself as an alcoholic. 

 

 

[28:22] How did it feel when you said you were an alcoholic?    

 

The word itself wasn’t that difficult.  But saying it in front of a group of people, who then clapped, gave him a sense of relief and he started crying. 

 

[32:45] You mentioned that you had the shakes for two weeks after your last day of drinking, what is your take on that?

 

He says he doesn’t even remember those first two weeks.  He knows he called his AA sponsor a couple times, he took a couple days off work, and that he was doing things to take care of himself.

 

[35:20] What kept you going during those first two miserable weeks?   

 

He knew he was going to die if he drank again. 

 

[36:30] What are some of the lessons you learned in the first 30 to 60 days?     

 

In the first 30 days he had to learn how to be honest about everything. In the first 60 days he had to learn how to trust other people.  Both of these were incredibly hard to do.     

 

[39:48] Share with me how important it is to bring other people on in your recovery.

 

Mina started telling his closest friends during the time he started to do his amends (AA step 9).  Most of his friends were in shock because he was so good a lying that they had no idea he had a drinking problem.  The friendships became closer after he told them. 

 

[41:30] Why do you think you drank?

 

There are several reasons.  He drank to feel normal and it helped him to socialize.  When he drank alone drinking was the elixir for everything that was wrong.  He drank because he wanted to die. 

 

[43:50] Is there anything you would have done differently when getting sober?

 

Mina says he would have listened to his sponsor regarding dating. 

 

 

[46:00] Rapid Fire Round

 

 

  1. What is your plan in sobriety moving forward?

 

More spirituality, more service, and working on myself in terms of projects I never did because I was drunk. 

 

  1. What are some of your favorite resources in recovery?

 

The practice of meditation I one.  Music is another resource.  The third resource is to really work on some deeper issues. 

 

  1. In regards to sobriety, what is the best advice you’ve ever received?

 

Do you want to be right, or do you want to be at peace?

 

  1. What parting piece of guidance do you want to give to listeners?

 

Choose yourself today. 

 

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

 

You wake up in your own piss and shit after a hard night drinking. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Upcoming retreats:

Bozeman Retreat – August 14-18, 2019

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

You can find more information about these events here

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Blinkist

This episode is brought to you in support by Blinkist. Right now, my listeners can try Blinkist for free. Visit blinkist.com/elevator for your seven-day free trial.

 

Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free

Sobriety Tracker iTunes

Sobriety Tracker Android

Sober Selfies! - Send your Sober Selfie and your Success Story to info@recoveryelevator.com

 

“Recovery Elevator – It all starts from the inside-out.”

Mar 11, 2019

Tricia, with a sobriety date of November 14, 2016, shares her story.

Sometimes we reach a moment in our journey where we say, “what’s next?”.  Paul discusses what he would recommend when you reach this moment.   Do not go ‘seeking’, that reinforces a mind state that we are lacking something.   Instead, listen to the body.  The body is going to tell you where to go next. 

 

 

SHOW NOTES

 

[7:30] Paul Introduces Tricia.

 

Tricia with a sobriety date of November 14, 2016, is 37 years old and lives in Dallas, TX.  Tricia is a chef by trade, a business owner, and has a few side hustles.  She is divorced and does not have kids, but has a ‘manfriend’.  For fun Tricia likes to do crafts and puzzles, and enjoys live music. 

 

[8:40] Give us a little background about your drinking. 

 

Tricia grew up around alcoholism and addiction.  She had her first drink at 16 years old, getting drunk at a party to get back at a boy who had hurt her.  She says she always drank to get drunk.  Blackouts started in her early twenties and she started to try to moderate by her mid-twenties.   Tricia was always a high achiever and she soon became a high achieving, high functioning, alcoholic.   The hard part was coming to terms with the fact that she had a problem when she was sure everything looked fine from the outside. 

 

 

[15:10] Did you have a rock bottom moment, or was it an accumulation of many moments?    

 

Her drinking took a turn for the worse when she got divorced at the age of 34.  She was blacking out every time she drank, waking up with injuries and didn’t know where they came from.  Tricia says at a certain point you can no longer negotiate with alcohol.  After a 3-day physical detox she decided to keep the dry spell going. 

 

[20:22] Why do you think it’s so hard to quit drinking?    

 

We love to get in our own way.  Alcohol is highly addictive.  Our egos get in the way. 

 

[26:16] What got you from the beginning of your sobriety to where you are now?   

 

First and foremost, she had an open mind.  Tricia stopped doing what she wanted to do and started doing what other people told her she should do…and she tried everything.  She started attending AA regularly.  She was open and honest, and she started doing the things that were uncomfortable.  

 

[30:20] Is RECOVERED a thing?     

 

She says it depends.  In Tricia’s opinion, alcoholism isn’t about the alcohol it is about the stuff you are drinking over.  She says you (she) can be recovered from the alcoholism while at the same time not be recovered from the stuff you (she) drank over. 

 

[34:00] With 2 years and 3 months, what are you working on in your recovery now? 

 

She says she’s in some transition right now.  Being patient with the things that are out of her control is something she is working on, on a personal level.  She is also trying to bring more sober events to the forefront, such as the Sober by Southwest event she is bringing to Austin, TX on March 16th. 

 

[40:00] Paul and Tricia talk about the RE events and her podcast, Recovery Happy Hour. 

 

[46:00] What are some themes you are seeing in your podcasts?

 

Grey area drinking is a big one.  People are over the label ‘alcoholic’.  Sober dating is another one. 

 

[53:00] Paul and Tricia talk about how things have changed since the beginning of their sobriety to now. 

 

 

[56:20] Rapid Fire Round

 

 

  1. What parting piece of guidance would you give to listeners?

 

You do not need to be an alcoholic to decide to change your relationship with alcohol. 

 

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

 

You wake up and you plan your entire day around accommodating your drinking or your hangover. 

 

Upcoming retreats:

Bozeman Retreat – August 14-18, 2019

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

You can find more information about these events here

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Robinhood
This episode is brought to you in support by Robinhood. Right now, Robinhood is giving my listeners free stock such as Apple, Ford or Sprint to help build your portfolio. Signup at elevator.robinhood.com

Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free

Sobriety Tracker iTunes

Sobriety Tracker Android

Sober Selfies! - Send your Sober Selfie and your Success Story to info@recoveryelevator.com

 

“Recovery Elevator – It all starts from the inside.”

Mar 4, 2019

Steven, with a sobriety date of August 7, 2016, shares his story.

Registration for the Bozeman, Montana Retreat opened up this past Friday.  Space is limited for this retreat.  You can find more information about events here

Internet memes…a picture, coupled with a few short words, can spread powerful messages.  Paul describes one he saw the other day.  It was an old school telephone with the words, “when the phone was attached with a wire humans were free”.  Paul encourages listeners to put their phone down for a couple of hours each day. 

Paul talks about courage.  Courage is being OK with not knowing what is happening next.  We don’t know what’s going to happen when we quit drinking.  This can be frightening.  In recovery we don’t need to be at level 10 courageousness at all times.  Paul’s advice is to listen to your body, it will tell you when it’s time to be courageous or time to go a little slower. 

 

 

SHOW NOTES

 

[7:36] Paul Introduces Steven.

 

Steven, with a sobriety date of August 7, 2016, is 30 years old and is from Bakersfield, CA.  He works for a utility company.  He has a beautiful girlfriend.  Steven has always enjoyed outdoor activities and since being sober he has added reading and meditation to his list of things he enjoys. 

 

[10:00] Give us a little background about your drinking. 

 

Steven had his first few beers at the age of 13, but didn’t start drinking heavily until his senior year of high school when he started binge drinking on the weekends.  That mind-altering feeling, that that first drink at the age of 13 gave him, filled a void that he always felt he had.  Steven was kicked out at 18 and got his first DUI/wreck at 19.  He continued to drink and 8 yrs. later he got his 2nd DUI with a BAC of .29.  This 2nd DUI was an eye opener for Steven, and walking out of jail after it he decided to take a break from alcohol…that was August 7, 2016. 

 

[18:30] What would you say to listeners that are trying to “think their way” through sobriety?   

 

He would tell them it’s not going to happen. 

 

[21:22] Walk us through what happened when you walked out of jail on August 7, 2016.    

 

The first few weeks were tough.  Nobody knew about his 2nd DUI because he was too embarrassed to tell anyone.  For a few months he went into hibernation mode, only going from home, to work, and back home.  He met, and started dating a girl at about the 4th month mark and that lasted until he had a year of sobriety.  That breakup did not go well and he started obsessing about drinking again.  He went as far as pouring himself a glass of Jack Daniels, but because he had a healthy fear of alcohol, he played the tape forward and called a sober friend instead of drinking it.  The next night he went to his first AA meeting and has continued to go ever since.

 

[26:10] Talk to us about your experience with AA.   

 

Because Steven’s mom was in NA he knew that there was something out there that could help.  He didn’t know what to expect when he walked into his first meeting, but he knew he needed some help staying sober.  When he left that first meeting he wasn’t sure if he would go back.  A man at the meeting followed Steven outside to talk to him and invited him to a meeting the following night.  That man became Steven’s sponsor.  He had a willingness and felt hope in the rooms of AA. 

 

[35:54] Are you open about the fact that you are in recovery?    

 

At first he wasn’t, he was still worried about being judged.  After 6 months of AA he realized that he shouldn’t be ashamed of this part of his life.  He is now very open about it and feels that that helps him.  He also hopes that by being open about it he will be able to help others. 

 

[38:20] What is on your bucket list in sobriety? 

 

He just wants to live the best life he can live.  He wants to get out there and travel the world and be able to remember it. 

 

[40:30] Rapid Fire Round

 

 

  1. What was your worst memory from drinking?

 

Waking up out of a blackout after I wrapped my truck around a power pole, took out a tree, a no parking sign, and went through a brick wall. 

 

 

  1. Apart from AA what are some other resources you can recommend?

 

The book This Naked Mind, the Recovery Elevator podcast and other podcasts. 

 

  1. In regards to sobriety what is the best advice you have ever received?

 

A lady once told me, “everything is going to be OK and you never have to drink again if you don’t want to,” and that just burned in my brain. 

 

  1. What parting piece of advice can you give to listeners?

 

Get honest with yourself and give yourself a chance to be that person that has been locked up inside of you all this time.

 

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

 

You wake up 2 hours from your hometown, at a train station, you don’t have the slightest clue how you got there, with a massive headache, a massive hangover, and without a shirt.    

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Upcoming retreats:

Bozeman Retreat – August 14-18, 2019

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

You can find more information about these events here

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free

Sobriety Tracker iTunes

Sobriety Tracker Android

Sober Selfies! - Send your Sober Selfie and your Success Story to info@recoveryelevator.com

 

“Recovery Elevator – It all starts from the inside.”

Feb 25, 2019

Juan, with a sobriety date of May 29, 2018, shares his story.

Congratulations to Kirk S. in Florida for hitting 1 year of sobriety. 

This Friday, March 1st, registration for the Recovery Elevator Retreat in Bozeman goes live.  Space is limited for this retreat.  You can find more information about events here

After the interview with Juan, Paul will discuss detoxing from alcohol and how dangerous it can be. 

Paul talks about cravings.  What they are, what they represent, and what to do when we experience them.  Also, are all cravings the same?  In simple form, a craving is a desire to regulate our inner state with an external substance or behavior.   

 

 

SHOW NOTES

 

[9:25] Paul Introduces Bill.

 

Juan, with a sobriety date of May 29, 2018, is 32 years old and is from Los Angeles, CA.   He is a personal assistant, and single.  For fun Juan likes to play music (he is in a band), go to the movies, hike, workout.   

 

[10:25] Give us a little background about your drinking. 

 

Juan started drinking at the age of 19 to ‘fit in’.  He had recently come out as a gay man and drinking helped him feel more confident and comfortable in his own skin.  Touring with his band all over the country and world, drinking was the way he got rid of his performance anxiety.  Around age 25 things started to get messy.  Towards the end of his drinking his anxiety was through the roof.  

 

[13:25] Tell us more about your anxiety.   

 

At first drinking would calm his anxiety, but once he ‘went over the threshold’ he would start to get paranoid.  The worst part was the fear he would have when waking up in the morning.  His self-esteem was at an all time low.  In May of 2017 Juan hit this internal rock bottom, got into a horrible physical altercation with a friend and knew something had to change.     

 

[18:35] Walk us through what happened after May 27, 2107.    

 

He went through a ‘dry drunk’ stage.  He just stopped drinking, started avoiding going out, avoiding certain people and situations.  It wasn’t easy and he was not feeling the benefits right away.  He felt like he was on a diet and depriving himself.  He did this for about 4 months and then felt like his relationship with alcohol had changed, and he decided to drink again.  By his birthday in February his drinking was back to where it was when he quit.       

 

[22:15] Continue from where you are back to drinking and your anxiety is back.   

 

On May 28, 2018 he decided to try sobriety again.  This time he would do it differently.  He started to read books and watch movies about alcoholism.  After about a month and a half, and at a friend’s suggestion, he went to his first AA meeting.  Although he was nervous and uncomfortable, he immediately felt like he found what he needed.  He got a sponsor and attends about 4 meetings a week. 

 

[25:20] Tell us about your first AA meeting.    

 

His first meeting was very small and intimate.  It was a lot to take in and he left thinking he would go back, but still feeling confused.   He continued going once a week for a while, ducking in and out, until it felt more comfortable. 

 

[26:40] What advice do have for someone that is saying there is no way they could go to AA? 

 

If you are open and ready AA can work for you. 

 

[29:10] Walk us through a typical day in your recovery.

 

Juan wakes up earlier, prays, makes a gratitude list, goes to work, 4 evenings a week he catches an AA meeting.  Everyday in sobriety is different but he tries to something of service for someone every day.  He always tries to keep connection with someone throughout the day. 

 

[31:40] What has been the biggest hurdle you have had to overcome in the past 7 ½ months?

 

It has been in just that last few weeks, he is transitioning out of his job that he has had the 9 years.  It’s the first time in 9 years he is unsure about where he will be working.  Although it is a scary time for Juan, he feels a lot calmer than he thought he would and is taking it one day at a time.  He doesn’t think he would’ve been able to handle this situation before sobriety. 

 

[35:05] What was harder, coming out of the closet as a gay man, or coming out of the closet as an alcoholic?

 

Definitely coming out of the closet as an alcoholic. 

 

[37:15] What is it like playing music and being on stage in sobriety? 

 

At first it was difficult because of stage fright.  But now being nervous and being in the moment is a good thing. 

 

[40:08] What have you learned about yourself in this journey?

 

He is more confident and enjoys people more. 

 

[41:15] Rapid Fire Round

 

  1. What is your favorite guitar rift to play?

 

The intro rift in Smashing Pumpkin’s - Today

 

  1. What was your worst memory from drinking?

 

The fight he got into with his friend.    

 

  1. Did you have an ‘oh-shit’ moment?

 

Coming home with friends in an Uber and feeling so alone and desperate. 

 

  1. What is your plane moving forward?

 

Continuing with his step work, finding new sober friends and hopefully finding a whole new career.   

 

  1. What is your favorite resource in recovery?

 

AA is the go-to for me. 

 

  1. Regarding sobriety, what is the best advice you have ever received?

 

Letting go of control. 

 

  1. What parting piece of advice can you give to listeners?

 

Contrary action, doing what you don’t want to do. 

 

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

 

Your bandmates on tour lock you in a basement because you are that out of control and everyone is scared of you. 

 

 

 

Upcoming retreats:

Bozeman Retreat – August 14-18, 2019

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

You can find more information about these events here

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free

Sobriety Tracker iTunes

Sobriety Tracker Android

Sober Selfies! - Send your Sober Selfie and your Success Story to info@recoveryelevator.com

 

“Recovery Elevator – It all starts from the inside.”

Feb 18, 2019

Bill, with a sobriety date of October 8, 2018, shares her story.

We want to thank Mike Noll for his commitment to doing the podcast show notes for the previous 35 episodes and welcome Kerri, from California, to the position, who will take over doing the next 26 episodes.    

We still have a couple spots left for our Nashville event coming up this February 22 – 24.  Registration for Bozeman Retreat will open up on March 1, and registration for our Asia Adventure will open up on July 1.  You can find more information about events here

Paul shares the news he is writing a book, which he hopes to launch by July 1.  As that date gets closer, he will be asking for volunteers to be part of the launch team so be on the lookout for that opportunity if that is something you would like to be a part of.

After doing something long enough some trends start to appear.  In Ep. 52, after 1 year of podcasting, Paul did a summery of what he learned during the 1st year.  In this episode he will cover the 4 themes that people successful in sobriety have fully embraced. 

  1. Community
  2. Accountability
  3. Thinking
  4. Trust

 

 

 

SHOW NOTES

 

[10:15] Paul Introduces Bill.

 

Bill, with a sobriety date of October 8, 2018, is 49 years old and is from northern New Jersey.   He does investment research for an insurance company.  Bill has been married for a little over 20 years and has two kids.  Bill finds fun in outdoor activities such as camping and fishing.   

 

[12:56] Give us a little background about your drinking. 

 

Bill started drinking at an early age and drank all throughout college and through his 20s.  He got married, finished grad school, their daughter was born, and things seemed fine.  Although he was drinking during this time there was nothing significant that made him feel as if he had an alcohol problem.  His son was born in 2005 and there were complications.  They soon realized his son was not meeting his milestones or developing like their daughter had. When his son was 14/15 mos. old, after watching a Home Improvement episode about a family with 4 autistic children, they just knew what their son’s problem was. The day that the doctor confirmed their fears is the day that Tom feels he became an alcoholic.  That was in 2006 and when the progression started.  

 

[18:53] When did you decide you needed to evaluate your alcohol consumption?

 

Things started to unravel for Bill in April of 2017.  After a mini-breakdown and a call to a sister, who called their father, an intervention was set up.  He started seeing a counselor who was the only person he was honest with, including himself.  At this time, he was not drinking, but white knuckling it.   By May he was drinking again.  He tried moderation and no matter what he tried it always failed. 

 

Fast forward to October 8, 2018, at the gym Bill pulls up podcasts, types in alcohol addiction and finds the RE podcast for the first time. 

 

[29:30] When did you finally get honest with yourself?    

 

The point of surrender was driving home the evening of Sunday, October 7th.  He finally said he had had enough. 

 

[32:34] Who are the first 3 people you ”burned the ships” with?

 

The first person he told was his best friend.   The second person he told was his cousin, who actually confronted him about his drinking.  The third person was the most difficult.  That was his wife and that was just two weeks ago. 

 

[38:36] Back to October 8, what were the things you put in place to get you to 90 days? 

 

The first few weeks he broke his days into 3 parts, the mornings, the afternoons, and the evenings.  All he was wanting to do was make it through the day to make it to bed.  The biggest differentiator is instead of pushing the cravings away he acknowledges them.  

 

[43:00] Talk to us about the progress you have made in accepting your son for who he is. 

 

He has gone from the feelings knowing that his son wasn’t going to be the baseball star to now recognizing the potential he does have.  His son has made great strides.  He tries to live in the present and not look too far into the future and celebrates his son’s accomplishments daily. 

 

 

[46:00] Rapid Fire Round

 

  1. What was your worst memory from drinking?

 

When his daughter wanted to watch the first Star Wars with him one Sunday night and he drank so many Vodka Cranberries during the day that he got violently ill after the 1st five minutes of the movie. 

 

  1. Did you have an “Ah-Ha” moment?

 

The mini-breakdown I had in April 2017. 

 

  1. What is your plan moving forward?

 

Reminding myself that I need to make progress each week and I can’t be complacent. 

 

  1. What is your favorite resource in recovery?

 

Recovery Elevator podcasts.

 

  1. What’s the best advice you’ve ever received (on sobriety)?

 

Burn the ships. 

 

  1. What parting piece of advice can you give to listeners?

 

Alcohol is but a symptom. 

 

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

 

Your 14 year old daughter says to you, at 10:45 in the morning, “Hey Dad, aren’t ya hitting the bottle a little too early?”, and you simply ignore her and walk away with the glass of wine in your hand. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Upcoming retreats:

Bozeman Retreat – August 14-18, 2019

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

 

You can find more information about these events here

 

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Blinkist
This episode is brought to you in support by Blinkist. Right now, my listeners can try Blinkist for free. Visit blinkist.com/elevator for your seven day free trial. 

Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free

Sobriety Tracker iTunes

Sobriety Tracker Android

Sober Selfies! - Send your Sober Selfie and your Success Story to info@recoveryelevator.com

 

 

“Recovery Elevator – It all starts from the inside.”

 

Feb 11, 2019

Crystal, with 84 days of sobriety, shares her story.

This is a special podcast episode!  It marks 4 consecutive years of podcasting…208 straight Mondays in a row. 

Paul talks about how Recovery Elevator and the RE community has saved his life, and shares ways we can all help others stop drinking.

 

SHOW NOTES

[11:00] Paul Introduces Crystal.

Crystal has been sober for 84 days and lives in San Antonio, Texas.  She is a life style/transformation coach.  She is 30 years old and recently single.  For fun Crystal likes to workout.    

 

[12:56] Give us a little background about your drinking. 

 

Crystal considered herself a binge drinker.  She tried to moderate her drinking by only drinking on the weekends, as her drinking was starting to affect her work and relationships, but that led to going hard core on the weekends. 

 

[15:00] When did you first realize you had a problem with alcohol?

 

That was a couple of years ago when she realized she didn’t drink like other people.  She always wanted more to drink, always wanting to be buzzed or drunk.  One drink was never enough.  It was in 2018 that she realized that she really had to make a change.    

 

[19:38] You started your sobriety journey in January 2018, walk us through that. 

 

She became sober curious in January 2018, but feels like it didn’t stick at that time because she wasn’t doing it entirely for herself.  She was sober for a few months but eventually lost her “why” and fell back into her old habits.  There was a moment in 2018 that she felt like she had no control and that was a scary moment for her. 

 

[21:33] Do you feel like there were times in the last year that you were running on willpower alone?    

 

She definitely thinks it was on willpower alone and was trying to do it on her own.  

 

[24:04]  You mentioned when you first got sober you didn’t think of it in terms of being sober the rest of your life, talk about that. 

 

She thought it was going to only be a temporary thing and that she would learn how to moderate it.  She realized that she couldn’t moderate it, that only having a one or two drinks would never be enough. 

 

[26:13]  What did you change 84 days ago?

 

The first couple weeks were difficult for her.  She got connected with friends at church and let her family know.  She shifted her focus and became really honest with herself. 

 

[30:11] What have you learned about yourself in these last 87 days?

 

She learned she could have a personality without being drunk.  She learned that she could have fun and accomplish a lot more without being drunk. 

 

[31:48]  Why do you think you drank?

 

She thinks she started drinking because it gave her liquid courage in the social scene and then it just turned into a habit.  She feels it was a coping mechanism this last year as she was dealing with her breakup. 

 

[33:43]  Walk us through a typical day in your sobriety. 

 

Working with her clients daily helps her as well.  Working out, meditating, staying in the Word, staying connected helps her on a daily basis. 

 

 

[39:20] Rapid Fire Round

 

  1. What was your worst memory from drinking?

 

The moment when she realized she could not control her drinking. 

 

  1. Tell us about a time when you could not control your drinking.

 

Just having the feeling that she couldn’t stop was definitely her A-ha moment that she realized that she needed to make a big change.

 

  1. What is it like being 30 and getting sober?

 

It’s a challenge but what she has found that helps her is connecting with other sober people. 

 

  1. What is your favorite resource in recovery?

 

The community aspect, podcasts like Recovery Elevator, filling my mind with positivity and being around like minded people. 

 

  1. What’s the best advice you’ve ever received (on sobriety)?

 

Being reminded that her feelings were valid, and so is her story. 

 

  1. What parting piece of advice can you give to listeners?

 

Stay connected, embrace the journey, and know that there are going to be good days and bad days.  Know that being sober is not weird. 

 

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

 

You’re downloading multiple sobriety trackers trying to decide which one works best for you. 

 

Upcoming retreats:

Bozeman Retreat – August 14-18, 2019

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

 

You can find more information about these events here

 

This episode is brought to you in support by Robinhood. Right now, Robinhood is giving my listeners free stock such as Apple, Ford or Sprint to help build your portfolio. Signup at elevator.robinhood.com

Resources mentioned in this episode:

 

Robinhood
This episode is brought to you in support by Robinhood. Right now, Robinhood is giving my listeners free stock such as Apple, Ford or Sprint to help build your portfolio. Signup at elevator.robinhood.com

Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free

Sobriety Tracker iTunes

Sobriety Tracker Android

Sober Selfies! - Send your Sober Selfie and your Success Story to info@recoveryelevator.com

 

 

“Recovery Elevator – It all starts from the inside.”

 

Feb 4, 2019

Tom, with a sobriety date of June 6, 2018, shares his story.

Events – I am excited about the upcoming events for Recovery Elevator.  As already mentioned on the podcast we have Nashville on Saturday, February 23rd.  We also have the Bozeman Retreat from Aug 14-18th.  The Bozeman Retreat was a huge hit in 2017 and it is back on the calendar for this year.

Guys, what I am particularly excited about these days is sober travel.  We are putting together the sober travel itineraries and the next one we are doing is an Asia trip in late January 2020.  This will be a 12 day trip, flying into Bangkok, Thailand and then making our way over to Siem Reap, Cambodia where we will make our departure.  Experiencing the culture, service work, and recovery workshops will all be a part of this trip. 

You can find more information about all these events at recoveryelevator.com/events. 

We’ve all heard of FOMO, or the Fear Of Missing Out.  Today I want to talk to you about JOMO – the Joy Of Missing Out.  The Joy Of Missing Out is the emotionally intelligent antidote to FOMO, and is essentially about being present and content where you are at this moment in life.  Instead of constantly trying to keep up with the Jones’, JOMO allows us to be who we are in the present moment, which is the secret to finding happiness.

At the end of the episode I have a bunch of ”You might be an alcoholic if…” lines.  Listeners I would love to hear your own “You might be an alcoholic if” lines.  Email them to info@recoveryelevator.com and put YMBAAI in the subject line. 

SHOW NOTES

[6:55] Paul Introduces Tom.

Tom, who considered himself a high-functioning alcoholic, is 50 years old, lives in Seattle, Washington, and has a sobriety date of 6/4/18.  He is married, has two children, and a pug named Violet.  He works in the high tech field. 

[10:30] Give us a little background about your drinking. 

He had his first drink when he was 14, and although he didn’t really like it his friends were doing it, so he kept doing it.  Drank a lot in high school, it was almost like a sport.  The first 10-15 years he feels he was a regular drinker, that he could take it, or leave it.  He began binge drinking in college.  The last 20 years he was drinking every day, but didn’t think he had a problem. 

[16:50] When did you know that something was not right with your drinking?

That started about 2 years ago when he started getting numbness in his fingers, enough times that he went to the doctor about it.  The doctor asked him what his drinking was like.  About a year ago he had a major stressor in his life and the way he dealt with it was by drinking.  Up until that point he always thought he drank for relaxation. 

[24:30] Walk us through your early part of sobriety.

Tom says the first 4-5 were hard and talked about the drinking dreams he had.  He changed his whole routine and became what he called a "sobriety savage”.  He attends AA at least once a week but is not sure it is something he wants to continue to do for the rest of his life. 

[35:25] What have you learned most about yourself in these past 7 months?   

That you are never too far gone. 

[38:50] Rapid Fire Round

  1. What was your worst memory from drinking?

When he went on a church camping trip and he got so drunk that he packed up the family early and snuck away the next morning. 

  1. Did you ever have an “oh-shit” moment?

 He had never told anyone this; about a year ago he went out driving at 3:00 AM and was driving in a manner that he was basically putting his life in God’s hands.  He spun out, the car stopped, and he finally came to his senses and balled like a baby.  

  1. What’s your plan in sobriety moving forward?

Keep it simple.  Live in the moment.  Continue going to AA.  Really connect with people. 

  1. What’s the best advice you’ve ever received (on sobriety)?

His son telling him to go to AA. 

  1. What parting piece of advice can you give to listeners?

 Do what you need to do to keep yourself sober and keep yourself safe.  You don’t need to know everything at that moment.

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

You can’t recall which Netflix shows you have binged, or plan to binge, even as you are possibly watching them. 

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free

Sobriety Tracker iTunes

Sobriety Tracker Android

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Jan 28, 2019

Dusty, with a sobriety date of  9/21/15, shares his story.

 

On January 1st, I launched the 3rd private, unsearchable Facebook accountability group.  All Café RE signups starting January 1st-January 31st will be placed in the new group.  This group will be capped at 300 members to ensure intimacy.  For the entire month of January, you can use the promo code 2019 for 75% off registration.

If you’re a Recovery Elevator podcast listener and you live in or close to the Nashville area, join us Saturday, February 23rd for Recovery Elevator LIVE in Nashville at 7 pm.  Go to recoveryelevator.com for more info.

I recently finished reading the book The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell.  The book isn’t specifically a recovery book, but some of the ideas and themes can be applied to getting sober and staying sober.  When it comes to the journey into sobriety there are 2 tipping points I want to cover in this episode.  The first one happens when you start to question whether alcohol is serving a positive purpose in your life and the second one occurs when you quit drinking. 

At the end of the episode I will talk about a third tipping point, one to avoid. 

 

SHOW NOTES

 

[6:55] Paul Introduces Dusty.

 

Dusty is 38 years old, lives in Bozeman, Montana, and has a sobriety date of 9/21/15, just over 39 months since his last drink.  He is an accountant.  He loves playing recreational sports, just started playing hockey this year, after learning how to skate. 

 

 

[10:30 ] Give us a little background about your drinking. 

 

He started drinking when he was in high school and fell in love with it.  Same thing through college, but once he finished college that is when his drinking progressed.  It was at this time drinking was no longer fun and started to get out of control.  He was drinking alone in his apartment. 

 

[11:43 ] Did you ever try and put any rules into play, or try and quit?

 

He would try and only drink on the weekends, try and cut out beer, try to regulate.  It never worked. 

 

[15:01 ] What was your rock bottom, or your tipping point?

 

After going on a 10 hour bender, watching college football one Saturday in the downtown bars of Bozeman he was informed the following day that he had kicked a girl that night before.  He had no recollection of doing that.  Running into the girl on Sunday and seeing the look on her face was his rock bottom. 

 

[24:52 ] How did you stay sober after the first month?

 

He has a great group of friends that once he shared that he was an alcoholic they gave him 100% support.  He also got really involved in the RE Facebook group. 

 

[30:35 ] Referring to the quote, “drinking is but a symptom”, do you know why you drank?

 

Probably genetically predisposed to it, it’s on both sides of his family.  And like he stated earlier, he started drinking for fun in high school and then it turned into more of pity drinking in his late 20s. 

 

 

[38:50 ] Rapid Fire Round

 

  1. True or False, love is the answer…and why?

 

Absolutely!  Love conquers all.

 

  1. What was your worst memory from drinking?

 

After moving back from Kentucky he was living with his Mom for a couple of months.  She came into his room asking if he was going to work and she screamed after discovering a puddle in the middle of his room.  She blamed it on Buster the cat but he was sure it was from him.   

 

  1. Did you ever have an “oh-shit” moment?

 

Probably the look on Buster’s face.

 

  1. What’s your plan moving forward?

 

Staying involved with the CaféRE community and creating those relationships.  Going to Nashville.  Getting out of his comfort zone.

 

  1. What’s the best advice you’ve ever received (on sobriety)?

 

Get some sober friends. 

 

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

 

You pee on the floor in the middle of the night and blame it on your cat. 

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

This episode is brought to you in support by Blinkist. Right now, my listeners can try Blinkist for free. Visit blinkist.com/elevator for your seven day free trial. 

This episode is brought to you in support by ZipRecruiter. Right now, my listeners can try ZipRecruiter for free. Visit Ziprecruiter.com/elevator

Connect with Cafe RE- Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY for your first month free

Sobriety Tracker iTunes

Sobriety Tracker Android

Sober Selfies! - Send your Sober Selfie and your Success Story to info@recoveryelevator.com

 

 

“We took the elevator down, we gotta take the stairs back up, we can do this!”

 

Jan 21, 2019

Kane, with 49 days of sobriety, shares his story.

On January 1st, I launched the 3rd private, unsearchable Facebook accountability group.  All Café RE signups starting January 1st-January 31st will be placed in the new group.  This group will be capped at 300 members to ensure intimacy.  For the entire month of January, you can use the promo code 2019 for 75% off registration.

If you’re a Recovery Elevator podcast listener and you live in or close to the Nashville area, join us Saturday, February 23rd for Recovery Elevator LIVE in Nashville at 7 pm.  Go to recoveryelevator.com for more info.

Recover Who We Were Meant To Be

Tony Robbins and Russell Brand recently did a podcast titled Recover Your True Self.  In this episode there are two value bombs I want to talk about.  The first is Russell Brand’s definition of recovery, and the other is his idea of the main intention of the 12 steps.

At the end of the episode, I share a story about letting go. 

  

SHOW NOTES

[6:49 ]  Paul introduces Kane

Kane is 45, lives in Adelaide, Australia, and has 49 days of sobriety.  He is a government worker.  He loves hiking and doing yoga in the mornings.  He is also a birdwatcher.  He likes socializing, and has been doing more social events since he’s been sober. 

[ 11:00 ]  Give us a little background about your drinking. 

He started drinking in late high school, and quickly progressed to “drinking for drunkenness.”  In college, alcohol became an escape from “this busy brain.”  He surrounded himself with friends who drank like he did.   

[31:40 ]   What does a typical day in your recovery look like?

He gets up early, does yoga and goes to work.  After work, he takes his dog Rusty for a walk, and spends time with his wife (without fighting).  He has been surprised by how much he enjoys socializing in sobriety

[40:39]   What’s on your bucket list in sobriety?

First and foremost, to continue to improve his relationship with his family.  He wants to keep expanding his honesty.  He is looking forward to eventually getting a caravan (camper) and going on road trips with his wife, birdwatching along the way.  He also looks forward to continuing having good times without alcohol.

[44:00] Rapid Fire Round

 

  1. What was your worst memory from drinking?

 

Not being as good a father as I thought I was.

 

  1. Did you ever have an “oh-shit” moment?

 

Waking up after a blackout, and finding a misspelled note on his phone that he’d written to himself telling him where he’d parked his car after trying not to drive while drunk.

 

  1. What’s your plan moving forward?

 

Socializing, yoga, taking responsibility.

 

  1. What’s your favorite resource in recovery?

 

The Recovery Elevator Podcast.  He also has gone to an AA meeting, and enjoyed it. Learning to be able to be honest with others about not drinking.

 

  1. What’s the best advice you’ve ever received (on sobriety)?

 

Asking “Is this working for me?” and if the answer is “no” change it.

 

  1. What parting piece of guidance can you give listeners who are in recovery or thinking about quitting drinking?

 

Take responsibility for how you act.

 

  1. You might be an alcoholic if...

 

you ask your mother for lift to your car, because you’d been drinking the night before.  When you get to where you think you left your car, it’s not there.  You then remember that you’d driven it home drunk.  You then ask your mother to drive you a little past your home where you had parked your car so your partner didn’t know you’d driven home drunk.

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Tony Robbins and Russell Brand Podcast, Recover Your True Self:

This episode is brought to you in support by Care/Of. For 25% off your first month of personalized Care/of vitamins, go to TakeCareOf.com and enter the promo code ELEVATOR

 

“We took the elevator down, we gotta take the stairs back up, we can do this!”

 

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