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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: September, 2020
Sep 28, 2020

Rob took his last drink June 5, 2019. With over one year away from alcohol (at the time of recording) this is his story of living alcohol free (AF).

 

Odette’s weekly installment of: Finding the Better You…..

 

When we say no to alcohol, we are saying yes to a better life. Once the alcohol is left behind some people pick back up old hobbies, others go off to do things they thought they would never do. Give yourself some grace when you quit, and you are trying to figure out what you like to do now. Go for it, the possibilities are endless.

 

Is how we are choosing to spend our time after quitting drinking bringing us peace? It becomes our responsibility to protect our peace and also seek peace.

 

[6:22] Odette introduces Rob.

 

Rob is 55 and lives in Littleton, CO. He has been married to his wife for 30 years, they have 2 grown boys. Rob likes adventure sports, specifically motorbike adventuring. He also enjoys hiking, being outdoors. He very much loves what Colorado has to offer.

 

[9:34] Can you give listeners some background on your drinking?

 

Rob said he moved from rural Indiana in 1978 to Denver, CO and that’s when alcohol became a big part of his life. Stemming from his desire to fit into a new school as a kid, he began drinking. He also took a job at a warehouse where the older employees found it funny to corrupt the 15 year old preachers kid. His parents found out and they put a stop to it. He began leading a dual life, the adrenaline seeker mountain climber motorcycle rider vs going to church 5 times a week.

 

On November 11, 2012 his close friend Ted passes away from cancer. Rob didn’t know how to handle those feelings and after this he began drinking at home. By the end he was blacking out 3-5 nights a week.

 

[17:02] Did you ever think to yourself “I might have a drinking problem?”

 

Rob said he didn’t even have that thought. The mentality around the group he was in was “work hard, play hard”.

 

[17:32] After Ted passed, were you conscious of the fact that you were using alcohol to hide the pain?

 

Rob said that never occurred to him until he was in recovery.

 

[19:12] Tell me about after your wife left?

 

Rob said he gained enough clarity that night to realize the choice was alcohol or his marriage. He chose to fight for his marriage and that night was his last drink.

 

That next morning on his drive to work, rather than listening to his usual drive music, he listened to a podcast about recovery. That night he found an AA meeting as well.

 

[25:15] Tell me about the resentment you had and when you felt the shift.

 

Rob said it was a progression for him. He didn’t really find a home until he found Café RE in September 2019. He felt the connections become real.

 

[28:26] Tell me about those first few months after you quit.

 

Rob said at 4 months he had done a lot of the brain work. He was trying to connect to his emotions and doing real work on himself. Then in October 2019, a driver ran a red light and collided with the side of his car going 55 MPH. He suffered a traumatic brain injury. While physically ok, he had to/has to work hard to get back to himself and heal himself, again.

 

[35:00] Do you still get cravings and how do you handle them?

 

Rob said he does still get cravings. And when he does, he goes into his sobriety toolbox. The first thing he does is wait 20 minutes and then he has to figure out why the craving happened. If that doesn’t work he page 84’s his sponsor. This means: working the steps in your everyday life.

 

[39:16] Do you ever get push back from people when you tell them you don’t drink?

 

Rob said no one gives him push back.

 

 [40:33] Rapid Fire Round 

 

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

 

That first night at AA, I’m ok and I’m not alone.

 

  1. If you could talk to day 1 Rob, what would you say?

 

10 deep breaths and give yourself a big hug.

 

  1. What are you excited about right now?

 

Butt Burner Gold which is 1500 miles in 24 hours on a motorcycle.

 

  1. What parting piece of guidance can you give listeners who are thinking about ditching the booze?

 

Stick around. Do the work. It’s worth it. One day you will wake up and see that it’s all worth it, you have this nice little life now.

 

You may have to say adios to booze... 

 

If you got kicked out of public school for drinking and your parents put you into a parochial school and you show up to bible study drunk.

 

Odette’s challenge this week:

 

Close your eyes for a few minutes and think about the things that bring you peace. Drop them down and keep them close. Get in the habit of looking for this peaceful feeling.

 

 

Affiliate Link for Endourage:

For 10% off your first CBD order with Endourage visit this link and use the promo code elevator at checkout. 

 

Affiliate Link for Amazon:

Shop via Amazon using this link.

 

Upcoming events, retreats and courses:

  • Recovery Elevator’s first ever REgionals! Join us for our online zoom conference this October 23-24th. This event is for Café RE Members only. Not a member yet?! Sign up here and use the promo code OPPORTUNITY to waive the set-up fee.
  • Ditching the Booze - The What, the Why and the How. The new course will start 11/3/20. It’s free for Café RE members. Not a Café Re member? Sign up here and use the code OPPORTUNITY for waive the set-up fee.
  • You can find more information about our events 

 

The book, Alcohol is SH!T, is out. Pick up your paperback copy on Amazon here! You can get the Audible version here!  

 

Resources: 

Connect with Cafe RE - Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY to waive the set-up fee.

Recovery Elevator YouTube - Subscribe here!

Sobriety Tracker iTunes 

Sobriety Tracker Android 

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

 

“Recovery Elevator – “Protect your peace – I love you guys”

Sep 21, 2020

Will took his last drink April 10, 2018. With just over 2 years away from alcohol (at the time of recording) this is his story of living alcohol free (AF).

 

Odette’s weekly installment of: Finding the Better You…..

 

Navigating through tough times. Removing alcohol allows you to actually do something about a problem, however sometimes without alcohol in front of it, a problem can present more clearly. It’s hard to do the hard thing and easy to pretend our problems aren’t really there. We have a choice to accept the problem (the storm) as it presents itself and its aftereffects as part of a life without alcohol.

 

[7:01] Odette introduces Will.

 

Will is 43 and lives in Queens, NY. He’s an IT consultant and married with a dog. For fun he loves to be outdoors, surfing, live music, cooking, biking, running and traveling.

 

[9:34] Can you give listeners some background on your drinking?

 

Will said he was 12 when he has his first drink on vacation, but he considers his real entrance to alcohol was around the age of 15. It dissolved the anxiety he felt in social situations. In college he went full force into drinking and it quickly became a daily habit. He sought out others who drank like he did.

 

 

[12:57] Were you a high performer in school?

 

Will said alcohol did impact his school work. He had no direction for what he wanted to do the rest of his life. He found himself drinking in exchange for doing things he loved.

 

[14:22] What happened after college?

 

Will said followed a band he loved around the country and fully fell into the drinking and partying culture.

 

[16:18] Did you ever question your drinking?

 

Will said no, because he had surrounded himself with a culture of drinking and partying. So, he was around it and it was normalized within his circle.

 

[18:23] Walk me through your next life chapter?

 

Will said he moved to Washington state with his now wife and went back to school. There was less drinking, and he was able to focus on his schoolwork and life. He found some balance mixed in with the pockets of crazy times.

 

Once he finished school he moved back to New York and began work, but also was staying out late drinking. He noticed the change in his physical alcohol dependance at this moment.

 

[22:34] Did you introduce moderation rules?

 

Will said he attempted moderation at home and it simply evaporated over time.

 

[23:21] Did you start having conversations with your wife about this?

 

Will said him and his wife were both “in it” at the time. (She is also now in recovery.) There was enabling happening and it was difficult to navigate.

 

[24:05] Did you have a rock bottom?

 

Will said he sought out a doctor to prescribe him something to help him get through the physical dependency. However, looking back, that was just another layer onto addiction. This went on for years with a chaotic life and drinking. He sought treatment after two friends expressed concern in 2016.

He did a 28-day inpatient program. While he wasn’t ready fully for recovery, but at the same time wanted to change his life. He made it through but relapsed within 60 days.

 

[29:14] Walk me through 2016 – 2018.

 

Will said he was trying in those two years, but it seemed impossible. While he was in and out of the AA rooms, he wasn’t doing the work that he was told was needed.

 

April 10, 2018, he entered a detox again after 3 days of a mental psychosis.

 

[33:13] What changed this time?

 

Will said there was enough pain in his life, he realized he needed to make a change.

 

[34:30] Do you still get cravings?

 

Will said not really, he gets fleeting thoughts.

 

[34:40] What your biggest way of coping with uncomfortable feelings?

 

Will said you get comfortable with being uncomfortable. Once he started to take his sobriety seriously, he accepted the program he was being told to work. He can now make sense of his feelings without alcohol numbing them down. There’s purpose in the struggles we go through.

 

[37:45] Have you healed the nerve damage in your feet at all?

 

Will said the rest of his body has healed which helps the pain overall. That makes the nerve pain manageable as a whole. He looks at the pain as a high power telling him to move. So that’s actually the gift that came from all this.

 

[40:12] When you left treatment, what was your plan?

 

Will said he jumped into AA. He was open to anything recovery related.

 

[43:55] What’s your favorite NA drink?

 

Will said he’s a club soda guy. Nothing fancy.

 

[44:27] Have you ever gotten push back from people?

 

Will said no one has given him pushback on his desire to lead a life without alcohol. But also, that’s a little telling to the condition he was in, everyone could see he needed help.

 

 [45:47] Rapid Fire Round 

 

  1. If you could talk to day 1 Will, what would you say?

 

You’re 100% worth it and you are a lot stronger than you could ever imagine.

 

  1. What are you excited about right now?

 

Grateful to have the tools that he has and to see where this takes us and the ability to give back.

 

  1. What’s your favorite flavor of ice cream?

 

Salted caramel anything.

 

  1. What are your favorite resources outside of AA?

 

Café RE, podcasts, self-help books, an in-person community

 

  1. What parting piece of guidance can you give listeners who are thinking about ditching the booze?

 

Life on the other side is beautiful. There’s a life to be had out there.

 

You may have to say adios to booze... 

 

If you’re curing your hangovers with more alcohol, that’s something that’s hard to come back from.

 

Odette’s challenge this week:

 

Take some time to access the challenges you are dealing with right now. Make a list of things you think you’ve been doing to navigate the situation. Don’t judge yourself, just write them down, edit as you see fit. If there are things on that list you don’t like, make a plan to change it.

 

 

Affiliate Link for Endourage:

For 10% off your first CBD order with Endourage visit this link and use the promo code elevator at checkout. 

 

Affiliate Link for Amazon:

Shop via Amazon using this link.

 

Upcoming events, retreats and courses:

  • Recovery Elevator’s first ever REgionals! Join us for our online zoom conference this October 23-24th. This event is for Café RE Members only. Not a member yet?! Sign up here and use the promo code OPPORTUNITY to waive the set-up fee.
  • Ditching the Booze - The What, the Why and the How. The new course will start 11/3/20. It’s free for Café RE members. Not a Café Re member? Sign up here and use the code OPPORTUNITY for waive the set-up fee.
  • You can find more information about our events 

 

The book, Alcohol is SH!T, is out. Pick up your paperback copy on Amazon here! You can get the Audible version here!  

 

Resources: 

Connect with Cafe RE - Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY to waive the set-up fee.

Recovery Elevator YouTube - Subscribe here!

Sobriety Tracker iTunes 

Sobriety Tracker Android 

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

 

“Recovery Elevator – “I believe in you, grab your life vest and let’s do this – I love you guys”

Sep 14, 2020

Kevin took his last drink April 11, 2020. With just over 3 months away from alcohol (at the time of recording) this is his story of living alcohol free (AF).

 

Odette’s weekly installment of: Finding the Better You…..

 

Receiving feedback and how to do better. After a negative comment / feedback from a listener, Odette took the comments and the feedback and is seeing this as an opportunity to do better. It seems these days that “do better” is being used more and explored. This was the universe reminding her that she is worthy, the listener is worthy, and everyone is worthy. She has gratitude and love for the listener because they allowed to her see something from a different perspective. If you have feedback, please send an email to Odette.

 

[7:23] Odette introduces Kevin.

 

Kevin is 59 and originally from Philadelphia, he has lives in Florida for the past 20 years. He’s a printer and works for the schoolboard. He’s married and loves cooking, traveling and doing charcoal portraits.

 

[9:13] Can you give listeners some background on your drinking?

 

Kevin said that when he was 7, he became the drink maker at his grandparents’ card games. He would have some whiskey and ginger ale himself. In 4th grade he was bullied, so he would go home at lunch to eat but also to do a few shots of liquor so he could deal with that. In high school he fell in with a crowd that drank and also sold drugs. He continued in that pattern until he met his now wife at the age of 33. He quit the drugs, but his drinking continued to escalate. In 2017 he spent 3 days in a psych ward, leaving there he sent to AA and a counselor, but it never really took, and he relapsed.

 

[12:26] Did anybody notice that all this was happening when you were so young?

 

Kevin said that he was a latch key kid, so his use of alcohol wasn’t noticed. And when he was in high school, he was always out of the house and with friends, so again, it wasn’t noticed. However, he says that while in high school he knew he had a bad alcohol problem on his hands.

 

[14:22] Did you ever reach out to somebody in those early days or was alcohol normalized in your family?

 

Kevin said his grandfather owned a bar and his parents had an active social life and he was a bartender at different points, so alcohol was always a part of his life.

 

[15:03] How did alcohol cause conflict in your marriage(s)?

 

Kevin said in his first marriage they were both very immature and it wasn’t ever going to last. With his second wife, he emulated her and wanted her to be proud of him. It never worked out however and he felt he was always disappointing her.

 

[16:40] What happened that made you want to reach out and get help?

 

Kevin said there were a lot of moments. Between injuries, unhealthy arguments and car accidents there were lots of red flags. He always thought he had it under control. He doesn’t have an off switch.

 

[18:55] What happened in April of this year?

 

Kevin said this time he wanted to get sober and committed to AA, he didn’t have another second chance in him. He was tired of playing the alcohol game, wondering where he would get more and having alcohol control his life.

 

[20:49] What do you do when you get a craving?

 

Kevin said he changes his environment right away. He gets out of where he is and tries to get a new headspace. In about 30 minutes time the craving is gone. He doesn’t call them alcohol cravings, but more the idea of alcohol gets in his brain.

 

Kevin uses the Merriam Webster app and it gives him a “word of the day”. He takes that word and tries to apply it to his sobriety throughout the day. This gives him a fresh perspective to sobriety over and over.

 

[23:00] Tell me about your family dynamics?

 

Kevin said for 24 years he was a tornado leaving a path of devastation through his marriage. They are trying to figure things out and he wants his wife to be happy and have a good life.

 

[26:02] What is your favorite thing about the AA program?

 

Kevin said the communication and connection with other people in recovery.

 

[28:20] Are there any other resources that have been helping you in this journey?

 

Kevin said he always has something going on to fill his time. Between podcasts and reading or going to meetings.

 

[28:58] What’s your favorite NA drink?

 

Iced coffee, with coffee ice cubes.

 

[29:36] Did you notice a change in your sugar intake?

 

Kevin said he never had a sweet tooth until he stopped drinking. But now he adds honey to his oats! He’s trying to scale back his sugar intake.

 

[30:52] What’s your go-to response when someone offers you a drink?

 

Kevin said he tells people “I’m an alcohol and I’m living it sober”. He has no reservations about telling people.

 

[31:30] Do you notice any pushback from people who you tell?

 

Kevin said the friends he has in Florida are accepting and have been nothing but positive.

 

[33:07] What are you excited about right now?

 

Kevin is excited about the future. He wants to get involved with helping other people in recovery.

 

[34:47] Has your sleep improved?

 

Kevin said he wasn’t a great sleeper throughout most of his life, so while that pattern remains, he’s no longer sluggish and his body doesn’t hurt. He feels rested.

 

[31:30] Do you have to do virtual meetings during the pandemic?

 

Kevin said his room has been open throughout the pandemic and he is a little unsure if he would have had success doing virtual meetings. He needs the in-person/human connections.

 

[39:28] Have you been able to identify triggers?

 

Kevin said he drank for so long that he’s unsure if he actually has triggers. He drank simply because it was part of his life.

 

 

 [41:13] Rapid Fire Round 

 

  1. What is a lightbulb moment you’ve had during this journey?

 

Realizing he could go through the day without alcohol.

 

  1. What would you say to your younger self?

 

Love and value yourself. You matter. You have something to offer.

 

  1. What’s your favorite flavor of ice cream?

 

Coffee with chocolate covered espresso beans on top.

 

  1. What parting piece of guidance can you give listeners who are thinking about ditching the booze?

 

It’s important to stay focused and keep your sobriety in front of you. Stay focused on your interests and keep your mind active. Stress is a killer.

 

You may have to say adios to booze... 

 

If you come back to your table from an open bar with 4 drinks and 2 shots in your hand and ask if anyone wants anything themselves.

 

Odette’s challenge this week:

 

Try to build a practice around your negative self-talk. Swap out the negative with a kinder message for yourself. Give yourself the love you need.

 

 

Affiliate Link for Endourage:

For 10% off your first CBD order with Endourage visit this link and use the promo code elevator at checkout. 

 

Affiliate Link for Amazon:

Shop via Amazon using this link.

 

Upcoming events, retreats and courses:

  • Recovery Elevator’s first ever REgionals! Join us for our online zoom conference this October 23-24th. This event is for Café RE Members only. Not a member yet?! Sign up here and use the promo code OPPORTUNITY to waive the set-up fee.
  • Ditching the Booze - The What, the Why and the How. The new course will start 11/3/20. It’s free for Café RE members. Not a Café Re member? Sign up here and use the code OPPORTUNITY for waive the set-up fee.
  • You can find more information about our events 

 

The book, Alcohol is SH!T, is out. Pick up your paperback copy on Amazon here! You can get the Audible version here!  

 

Resources: 

Connect with Cafe RE - Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY to waive the set-up fee.

Recovery Elevator YouTube - Subscribe here!

Sobriety Tracker iTunes 

Sobriety Tracker Android 

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

 

“Recovery Elevator – “Be the light and shine bright, you have the power to make a difference – I love you guys”

Sep 7, 2020

Taylor took his last drink June 7, 2019. With just over 13 months away from alcohol (at the time of recording) this is his story of living alcohol free (AF).

 

Odette’s weekly installment of: Finding the Better You…..

 

WAIT WAIT! It’s Paul’s 6 year Sober-versary! So instead we bring you Paul’s 6 big insights since his handing off the podcast to Odette.

  • People are struggling right now due to Covid, but let’s not label this as a problem. Let’s go within and have some spiritual growth.
  • Turn off the news.
  • The ego always sets its own trap.
  • Pets are the reason the human race hasn’t imploded yet.
  • He has gained empathy.
  • It’s never too late to accomplish a goal.

Bonus insight:

  • Paul’s parents are RAD!

 

[19:08] Paul introduces Taylor.

 

Taylor is 30 years old and lives in Thornton, Colorado with his two dogs, Harley and Rooster. While he’s lived in many places over the years, he grew up in Sacramento, California and now is in Colorado. He loves walking his dogs, record and write music, rock climbing, mountain biking, photography, hiking, skiing, snowboarding, wakeboarding, video editing and D&D. He likes to try all the hobbies now.

 

[23:54] Can you give listeners some background on your drinking?

 

Taylor said he started exploring alcohol around age 14. He wanted to see what alcohol was all about. He didn’t really touch alcohol again until he was about 16, mostly in High School he smoked weed. However, alcohol did allow him to fit in. His father and stepmother caught him smoking weed in college and made the decision to send him to live with his mother. This started his “victims’ story” because he wasn’t allowed to smoke weed anymore, so he was “forced to drink alcohol”. He saw his career grow however by quitting smoking weed, but there was alcohol ever present.

 

At 26 he found himself trying to moderate alcohol. Just before he deployed to Afghanistan, he thought to stop drinking a few days before, and he found himself in withdrawals. After not drinking while overseas, he ordered a drink on the plane home. Being home he was again trying to moderate.

 

[33:53] Tell me about going back to drinking after returning from Afghanistan?

 

Taylor said that he understood that he had seen the “other side of life” and you can never really go back. Alcohol just isn’t the same and he knew he was doomed. After his girlfriend left, was his rock bottom moment.

 

[42:19] Walk me through those first 30 days?

 

Taylor said he fully dove into recovery: “I sober like I drank”. When his father left, he kept going to therapy and AA. His pink cloud lasted 3 months and the energies to stay sober were stronger than his desire to drink. He found a lot of humility and got a sponsor and started working the steps.

 

[47:09] Can you share with listeners the difference between your 29th and your 30th birthdays?

 

Taylor said on his 29th birthday was in his first 30 days of sobriety. He sat at home and he didn’t have anything to do or anyone to hang out with. He called a newfound AA friend and he came over and they watched TV together. His 30th birthday he had 20 people show up to his birthday, from all parts of his life. He was humbled in that moment of the work that he had done to be the authentic Taylor.

 

[50:44] Do you still get cravings?

 

Taylor said yes. His alter drinking ego is named Gregory and he’s no longer the enemy of Taylor. Gregory still tries to get him to drinking, but he can have the conversation with Gregory about why they aren’t going to drink. Taylor treats Gregory like a sick child, with care and compassion. Cravings are now fleeting thoughts.

 

 [57:47] Rapid Fire Round 

 

  1. What is your favorite ice cream flavor?

 

Peanut butter and banana with candied bacon milkshake

 

  1. What would you say to your younger self?

 

Slow down, be gentle, be kind.

 

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

 

People, AA, The Calm App, Nature, Café RE, a picture of a dog.

Books:

Wherever You Go, There You Are by Jon Kabat-Zinn

The Tao of Pooh & The Te of Piglet by Benjamin Hoff

 

  1. What parting piece of guidance can you give listeners who are thinking about ditching the booze?

 

To be kind to yourself today and do the next kind thing.

 

You may have to say adios to booze... 

 

If you have driven to another state to buy more alcohol because the stores in your state are closed.

 

Odette’s final thoughts this week:

 

Congratulations Paul. You are loved, supported and you are worth it.

 

 

Affiliate Link for Endourage:

For 10% off your first CBD order with Endourage visit this link and use the promo code elevator at checkout. 

 

Affiliate Link for Amazon:

Shop via Amazon using this link.

 

Upcoming events, retreats and courses:

  • Recovery Elevator’s first ever REgionals! Join us for our online zoom conference this October 23-24th. This event is for Café RE Members only. Not a member yet?! Sign up here and use the promo code OPPORTUNITY to waive the set-up fee.
  • Ditching the Booze - The What, the Why and the How. The new course will start 11/3/20. It’s free for Café RE members. Not a Café Re member? Sign up here and use the code OPPORTUNITY for waive the set-up fee.
  • You can find more information about our events 

 

The book, Alcohol is SH!T, is out. Pick up your paperback copy on Amazon here! You can get the Audible version here!  

 

Resources: 

Connect with Cafe RE - Use the promo code OPPORTUNITY to waive the set-up fee.

Recovery Elevator YouTube - Subscribe here!

Sobriety Tracker iTunes 

Sobriety Tracker Android 

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

 

“Recovery Elevator – “We took the elevator down, we have to take the stairs back up, we can do this – I love you guys”

1