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Recovery Elevator

It isn't a no to alcohol, but a yes to a better life! On the Recovery Elevator podcast, you'll learn from guests that life after alcohol is much better and it's an opportunity of a lifetime. Paul, Season 1 and Odette, Season 2, cover topics such as, does moderate drinking work, does addiction serve a purpose, what happens to the brain when we quit drinking, should you track sobriety time, is AA right for you, what the hell is spirituality, what this journey looks like, how science and spirituality are merging and what that means for addiction treatment, we talk about emotions and how to deal with them without alcohol, cravings, we talk about relapse aka "field research," how to build that in-person community and burning the ships! Similar to other recovery podcasts like This Naked Mind, the Shair Podcast, and the Recovered Podcast, Paul and Odette discuss a topic and then interviews someone who is embarking upon a life without alcohol.
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Now displaying: January, 2020
Jan 27, 2020

Scott took his last drink on December 2, 2018.  This is his story.

Update on the Alcohol is Sh!t book!  The book is out!  Pick up your paperback copy on Amazon here!  You can get the Audible version here!

Registration is now open for the 2020’ Recovery Elevator LIVE event, Dancing with the Mind.  The event will take place June 11-13 in Denver, CO.  You can find more information about our events here.

On today’s episode Paul talks about control.  He also talks about an article, by Anna Ronan Shaw, that he read.  The article is titled Addiction Isn’t a Sin, It’s an Adaption, and you can find it here.  Paul shares his take, that addictions represent part of our personalities that are in the most need of healing. 

 

[11:25] Paul introduces Scott. 

 

Scott is 48 years old and lives in Denver, CO.  He is a bicycle mechanic.  For fun Scott likes to ride bikes, exercise, and hang out with his dogs, Willie and Waylon.    

 

[22:00] Give us a background on your drinking.

 

Scott started drinking in Jr. High/High School.  Within a couple of years Scott got 2 DUIs, 9 years later he got his 3rd DUI and lost his license for 5 years. 

 

In January 2004 Scott decided to go to rehab.  After making some phone calls he entered rehab on January 3, 2004, and stayed for 28 days.  Once out of rehab Scott immersed himself into recovery and AA.  In 2005 Scott was cleaning a family members house and found a vile of cocaine.  He says that within seconds he had it lined up, and up his nose.  He looked at that relapse as a lesson, reminding him how powerless over drugs/alcohol he was.  He continued his AA and recovery journey. 

 

In 2008 Scott says he said the 3 most dangerous words an alcoholic can say, “I got this”.  He gradually left the support of his AA community and the farther away he got the emptier his “sobriety toolbox” got. 

In 2012 Scott bought his first house and thought it would be cool to sit on his porch and drink NA beers.  Because of his 2 surgeries, and not liking pain pills, Scott started to smoke pot to help the pain.  In October of 2013 Scott’s father got in a really bad bicycle accident.  In the ambulance ride to the hospital with his father Scott saw a liquor store across from the hospital.  As soon as Scott’s father was settled in the hospital Scott headed for the store.  Without thinking about the 9 ½ years he had been alcohol free Scott got drunk that night. 

 

[32:33] What happened between then and 2018? 

 

Scott says his dad really never recovered from the accident.  He had multiple surgeries that were all unsuccessful.  On November 27, 2016, Scott’s father committed suicide.  After that Scott says he couldn’t use, or drink, enough.  He had no stop button. 

 

Scott sought out help from a therapist, who referred him to a doctor that agreed to help him stop drinking.  He prescribed meds that Scott waited a couple weeks before taking.  On December 3, 2018, Scott took his first benzo and hasn’t drank since. 

 

 

[48:45] Rapid Fire Round

 

  1. What’s a lightbulb moment you’ve had on this journey?

 

I think when I finally surrendered.  When I accepted that I am an alcoholic and a drug addict, and that that’s not a bad thing. 

 

  1. What is a memorable moment that a life without alcohol has given you?

 

I would have to say that panel in Montana. 

 

  1. What is your favorite alcohol-free drink?

 

A raspberry Italian cream soda with Topo Chico.

 

  1. What is on your bucket list in an alcohol-free life?

 

I want to be a sponsor and I want to help newcomers at my meeting. 

 

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

 

There is no good day to start this, except today. 

 

You might need to ditch the booze if...

           

You have a little bit left in a whiskey bottle and you decide to try to drink it all at once so you slam it down, and you throw up in your mouth and swallow that, and keep drinking the bottle and finish it. 

 

Upcoming Events and Retreats. 

Recovery Elevator LIVE: Dancing with the Mind - in Colorado – June 11-14th, 2020

Recovery Elevator in Costa Rica: From Jungle to the Beach - October 8 - 18th, 2020

You can find more information about our events here.

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

 

Care/of

For 50% off your first Care/of order, go to TakeCareOf.com and enter the code elevator50

 

 

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.  We can do this.”

 

 

 

Jan 20, 2020

Bianca took her last drink on October 3, 2018.  This is her story.

Update on the Alcohol is Sh!t book!  The book is out!  Pick up your paperback copy on Amazon here!  You can get the Audible version here!

Registration is now open for the 2020’ Recovery Elevator LIVE event, Dancing with the Mind.  The event will take place June 11-13 in Denver, CO.  You can find more information about our events here.

On today’s episode Paul talks about the process of rediscovering what you like to do, after ditching the booze, and to let it happen organically.  He encourages you to engage in activities where you find yourself in a ‘flow state’, or ‘in the zone’.    Instead of focusing on new hobbies and fun activities, try to find things where you almost lose yourself. 

 

[7:30] Paul introduces Bianca. 

 

Bianca is 22 years old and is from Austin, TX.  She recently graduated from college and is working for a temp agency while she looks for that full time job.  Bianca lives with her girlfriend.  For fun Bianca spends her time reading and in nature.    

 

[13:40] Give us a background on your drinking.

 

Bianca didn’t really drink while in high school, but in college she went wild.    She tried to moderate during her freshman year by documenting everything she did that involved alcohol.  That didn’t work.  The following year, 2016, she started doing drugs along with drinking.  Bianca does not remember much from her junior year.  By the beginning of her senior year (2018) she had a lot of things on her plate and her drinking was still up there. 

 

Bianca says she had a lot of little rock bottoms that finally accumulated into her big rock bottom, which happened on October 3.

 

[17:40] What happened on October 3? 

 

Bianca and some friends went out to get something to eat.   What started out as just one drink escalated to the point that one of her friends took her wallet away from her.  They went to a liquor store after that, and Bianca ended up at home, alone, taking shots.  She met up with her friends a little later, still sneaking double shots.   Bianca stumbled home and after mixing more drugs with the alcohol she passed out.   The following morning she woke up hating herself.      

 

[25:00] What was that first month like?

 

On October 4th Bianca texted the hotline and did what they told her to do, she got rid of her booze and hid her drugs.  She says the first few days and nights were tough.  She would come home from class and cry.  She was having intense nightmares and the shakes.  She now feels like she gets a clarity upgrade every 3 months. 

   

[28:10] What was is like getting sober at 22?    

 

Bianca says she actually got sober at 21 and celebrated her 22nd birthday sober.   She says it was hard, that there is a big drinking culture in Austin, TX.      

 

[32:00] What was harder, coming out as gay, or as someone with a drinking problem??

 

Bianca says both were hard.  She came out as gay at a very young age.  The hard part about telling someone she had a problem with drinking was the shame she felt.            

 

[33:20] What are you working on right now?

 

Bianca says she is really working on her self-worth and showing up for herself.     

 

[36:20] Have you ever explored why you drank?

 

Bianca said she has explored that with her therapist.  She says growing up her family fell into the victims, of victims, of victims.  She wasn’t taught very good coping skills.    

 

[39:20] Rapid Fire Round

 

  1. What’s a lightbulb moment you’ve had on this journey?

 

That I’m responsible for my recovery and nobody else. 

 

  1. What is a memorable moment that a life without alcohol has given you?

 

The ability to really feel my emotions and to be surprised. 

 

  1. What is your favorite alcohol-free drink?

 

Water.

 

  1. What are some of your favorite resources on this journey?

 

Definitely my sponsor, for sure.  Meetings and AA literature. 

 

  1. What is on your bucket list in an alcohol-free life?

 

Travel overseas sober. 

 

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

 

I would tell you all to slow down, as slow as you can go, and to feel your emotions. 

 

You might need to ditch the booze if...

 

You buy over $200 worth of alcohol and it is confiscated within 3 days by a good friend. 

 

 

Upcoming Events and Retreats. 

Recovery Elevator LIVE: Dancing with the Mind - in Colorado – June 11-14th, 2020

Recovery Elevator in Costa Rica: From Jungle to the Beach - October 8 - 18th, 2020

You can find more information about our 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

 

SkillShare

Get two months of premium membership for free at www.shillshare.com/elevator

That’s two whole months of unlimited access to thousands of classes 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.  We can do this.”

 

 

 

Jan 13, 2020

Greg took his last drink on October 2, 2012.  This is his story.

Update on the Alcohol is Sh!t book!  The book is out!  Pick up your paperback copy on Amazon here!  You can get the Audible version here!

Registration is now open for the 2020’ Recovery Elevator LIVE event, Dancing with the Mind.  The event will take place June 11-13 in Denver, CO.  You can find more information about our events here.

On today’s episode Paul talks about what happens to the dome when you stop drinking alcohol.  There is a long list of benefits of quitting alcohol, and the mental health aspects are just as important as the physical ones. 

In the first year away from alcohol, and beyond, neurons in the brain that no longer fire together, no longer wire together.  This means the neural connections that spark when we want to drink, or take a drink, begin to fade.  In time new neural connections are created that don’t involve alcohol.   

 

[9:40] Paul introduces Greg. 

 

Greg is 35 years old and from Orange County, CA.  Greg is an actor and has a 4-year-old daughter.  For fun Greg likes to go on adventures with his daughter and create music. 

 

[12:25] Give us a background on your drinking.

 

Greg first started drinking alcohol as a social lubricant.  Alcohol made it easier to talk to people and deal with things that he had tried to avoid.  In the beginning Greg was more of a clown when he drank, but in his early to mid-twenties his drinking got out of hand.  He was no longer drinking for fun anymore; he was relying on it to get through the day. 

 

[19:07] Was there a time when you knew the gig was up but you didn’t know where to go for help, or how to stop? 

 

Greg said yes, that it was a really demoralizing moment involving alcohol and cocaine.  He woke up, went outside in the rain, chain smoked about 10 cigarettes, and knew he needed to talk to somebody.  He called his sister, and without giving it much thought, told her he needed help.  His sister was there 20 minutes later, and with Greg’s mom helped get him into a place.        

 

[20:55] What happened after that?

 

Greg entered a treatment center and white knuckled it the first two weeks, and then eventually the clarity started to come. 

   

[24:30] Talk to us about your experience after rehab.    

 

Greg said he surrounded himself with sober friends and family.  He started going to school and focused on that, and also stated going to meetings.  About 6 months out Greg got a job volunteering at a treatment center.  He said he stayed really busy with a lot of structure.     

 

[26:35] Why do you think it’s so hard for people to ask for help?

 

Greg said he thinks that it’s our pride that gets in the way a lot of the times.  Greg said he had a hard time asking for help because he felt that he would be a burden on someone and he didn’t want people to become resentful of him.          

 

[36:00] How could it affect us if we are always thinking about the past or the future?

 

Greg says if we are always thinking about the past we are going to tend to be depressed, and if we are always thinking about the future, we are going to tend to be anxious.  Either one just drags us down and we are not productive.     

 

[38:00] Why do you think addiction is higher in the entertainment industry?

 

Greg said that there are several reasons, one being that it is more readily available. 

 

[44:00] Rapid Fire Round

 

  1. What’s a lightbulb moment you’ve had on this journey?

 

Witnessing my daughter being born.

 

  1. What is a memorable moment that a life without alcohol has given you?

 

My trip to Argentina. 

 

  1. What is your favorite alcohol-free drink?

 

Yerba Mate Revel Berry. 

 

  1. What are some of your favorite resources on this journey?

 

AA literature, online literature, stuff like that.         

 

  1. What is on your bucket list in an alcohol-free life?

 

Seeing my daughter have kids. 

 

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

 

Don’t be afraid to ask for help. 

 

You might need to ditch the booze if...

 

You get married in a blackout.    

 

Upcoming Events and Retreats. 

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

Recovery Elevator LIVE: Dancing with the Mind - in Colorado – June 11-14th, 2020

Recovery Elevator in Costa Rica: From Jungle to the Beach - October 8 - 18th, 2020

You can find more information about our events here.

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

 

Care Of

For 50% off your first Care/of order, go to www.TakeCareOf.com and enter the code elevator50

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

 

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.  We can do this.”

Jan 6, 2020

Kerri took her last drink on November 6, 2018.  This is her story.

Update on the Alcohol is Sh!t book!  The book is out!  Pick up your paperback copy on Amazon here!  You can get the Audible version here!

Happy New Year!  On January 1st the 4th Café RE group, UP, opened.    

2020’ Recovery Elevator LIVE event, Dancing with the Mind, will take place June 11-13 in Denver, CO.  Registration opens on January 8th, you can find more information about our events here.

On today’s episode Paul talks about meeting the man he would stay with while in Mexico, hearing his story, and discovering they had a connection through the TEDx Talk that Paul gave.  You can find the TEDx Talk, I’ve been duped by alcohol, here

Paul also discusses a video he recently watched, an interview by Dr. Gabor Mate, (author of In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts).  Dr. Mate says if you want to look at what causes the addiction you have to look at the benefit of addiction.  That the greatest myth on addiction is that its genetic, the other myth around addiction is that it is a choice that people make.  You can watch the Dr. Gabor Mate video here

 

[10:14] Paul introduces Kerri.  (**Doing the shownotes for my own interview is awkward! **) 

 

Kerri just turned 50, is married, and lives in Redding, CA.  She has two adult daughters, that both have families, and is a grandmother to 4.  For work Kerri recently fell into a new career, as a baker, and does stuff for RE.  For fun Kerri loves to be outdoors, hiking, taking her 3 rescue dogs out, travel, and kayaking. 

 

[15:51] Give us a background on your drinking.

 

Kerri started drinking in high school and was a black out drinker from the start.  A family move before 9th grade made Kerri very angry.  Alcohol helped her fit into a new school and she quickly became known as a partier. 

Kerri got married at 19, had her daughters right away.  She says that her and her ex-husband were problem drinkers throughout their entire 17-year marriage.  Kerri’s drinking really ramped up after her divorce. 

 

[17:00] How old were you when you realized you had a problem with alcohol? 

 

Kerri says that in high school she knew she didn’t drink like her friends, but that she didn’t care.  Alcohol got her out of her shell.    

 

[18:00] What happened after your divorce?

 

Kerri says her drinking ramped up and it got bad, really quick.  It was a big life change for Kerri, with the divorce, having to go out and find a job, and her daughters basically being out of the house.  She was drinking at home alone, blacking out every time. 

 

[23:35] How come you didn’t feel ready to do this interview?    

 

Kerri said she didn’t feel like she had anything worth sharing.  She said that has felt that way all her life. 

 

[26:23] Did you have a rock bottom moment?

 

Kerri said yes.  After getting her teaching credential later in life, which Kerri says was a dream job, she was fired from two teaching jobs as the result of her drinking.  Kerri surrendered her teaching credential.         

 

[31:00] Talk to us about how you did it the first weeks, first month.

 

Kerri said it was really hard, that she didn’t know what anyone (co-workers, parents) was told or what they knew.  Kerri was afraid to leave her house for fear of running into someone, she would grocery shop at 2:00 AM.  She said she was filled with so much anxiety that she didn’t know how she was going to come out of it the 2nd time around.  She went to a therapist for the first time.  She sought out and entered into a 90-day IOP program.    

 

[35:17] You’ve burned the ships on social media, what kind of response have you received?

 

Kerri said she has received nothing but support and encouragement, and she encourages everyone to do it. 

 

[37:50] Talk to us about the breakthrough you had at the Bozeman retreat. 

 

Kerri said she got much from the entire retreat but it was the Clarity Breathwork that really did it for her.  She said once she was able to stop paying attention to what was going on around her and just do her thing, she was able to experience something powerful that changed her. 

 

[44:38] Rapid Fire Round

 

  1. What’s a lightbulb moment you’ve had on this journey?

 

That I don’t have to live up to, what I think are, other people’s expectations.      

 

  1. What is a memorable moment that a life without alcohol has given you?

 

All these RE retreats, that is something I never would have imagined doing…taking off and meeting strangers. 

 

  1. What is your favorite alcohol-free drink?

 

I’m kind of boring, I really don’t do the mocktail thing, I’m a water drinker. 

 

  1. What are some of your favorite resources on this journey?

 

Definitely Café RE, these sober meetups, retreats and I listen to a lot of podcasts.         

 

  1. What is on your bucket list in an alcohol-free life?

 

Travel, travel, and more travel.  I want to do a marathon. 

 

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

 

To recover, get sober, whatever you want to call it, your way.  Your way may be different than someone else’s, and to not worry about what other people think. 

 

You might need to ditch the booze if...

 

You wake up one morning with a broken ankle and you have no idea how you did it. 

 

Upcoming Events and Retreats. 

Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020

Recovery Elevator LIVE: Dancing with the Mind - in Colorado – June 11-14th, 2020

Recovery Elevator in Costa Rica: From Jungle to the Beach - October 8 - 18th, 2020

You can find more information about our events here.

 

Resources mentioned in this episode:

SkillShare

Get two months free of classes with Skillshare at www.skillshare.com/ELEVATOR

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

Skillshare

For two free months of premium membership visit www.skillshare.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.  We can do this.”

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