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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, 2021
Jan 25, 2021

Sasha took her last drink on May 19th, 2019. This is her story of living alcohol free (AF).

 

Check out the free meditations on the Recovery Elevator page here!

 

Odette’s weekly installment of: Finding Your Better You

 

When Odette doesn’t want to forget something, she sends herself an email. Recently she found one to herself with the subject line: Positive Relationships. The body of the email said simply: “The biggest factor for cultivating resilience” (Season 17, Grey’s Anatomy)

 

We need resilience when embarking on this journey. Not just for this, but for everything life throws at us. Our journey is far from perfect, when we fall we need the courage to get back up and that’s why we need community. This is why together is better. Having one person in your corner can make a huge difference for you.

 

How many positive relationships to you have and are you fostering them?

 

[7:19] Odette introduces Sasha.

 

Sasha is from New Jersey and works in IT. She lives with her fiancé and their dog. For fun she likes to read, do jigsaw puzzles, meditate and collecting old books from estate sales.

 

[10:37] Can you give listeners some background on your story?

 

Sasha said she started drinking around the age of 18. It wasn’t anything that was intense, but she knew from the first drink it would make her be “her true self.” She got a DUI at the 20. Around 21 was when she started drinking alone. When she was 23/24 she was crying and falling apart every time she drank. Her thoughts were preoccupied with drinking all the time.

 

[13:48] Did the DUI make you question your drinking, or did you think that this was just something young people did?

 

Sasha said it was both. She knew she drank in a way that wasn’t normal but felt because she was so young it was also ok. Looking back she knew it should have been a big warning sign.

 

[15:36] Did you have any rock bottom moments?

 

Sasha said rock bottom was when she was drinking alone and miserable. She had the realization she was miserable but didn’t know how to get out of it.

 

[16:13] How did you get yourself out of the cycle?

 

Sasha said she was listening to the RE podcast and reading Eckart Tolle and doing the Sam Harris ‘Wake Up’ course and this gave her the realization she had a drinking problem. Her end goal when drinking was always to be drunk, so the solution was to have none.

 

[18:09] Was the podcast your first exposure to other stories of people’s drinking?

 

Sasha said after her DUI there was court mandated AA meetings and that was her first exposure. She loved hearing what people were going through because she could identify with them.

 

[21:20] What Tolle book were you reading?

 

The Power of Now

She was also reading In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts which covers many of the same themes.

 

[24:54] Were you having conversations with your fiancé about your drinking prior to May 20th?

 

Sasha said she always minimized it, so they never had direct conversations about her drinking. When she told him, he was very supportive and zero judgement. They continue to have conversations about her drinking.

 

[26:27] Did you feel relief when you told him?

 

Sasha said yes, a tremendous amount of relief. She was so lonely in her drinking and to have him be so accepting was what she needed.

 

[32:05] How was it for you right after you made the decision to stop drinking?

 

Sasha said for her it was like a switch flipped. She was so happy to be free from alcohol that her “pink cloud” lasted about 6 months. It helped that so many other things fell into place in that time as well. Sasha received a promotion at work, they got a dog, she was connecting with herself, reconnected with old friends and all the small things put themselves in place. It was hard for her to imagine going back to drinking.

She had a craving around month 8, but was able to play the tape forward and that tool helped her not have a drink.

 

[36:27] What happened after the pink cloud? What other tools do you use?

 

Sasha said this time quitting was different, she was able to flip a switch. She no longer romanticizes drinking. But overall she hasn’t had the white knuckling craving this time.

 

[39:27] Did you have a routine in your day that you had to fill with new things?

 

Sasha said it was when she left work. In the past she would leave work and pick-up alcohol on the way home. At first, she was distracting herself with seeing friends and taking her dog for a walk or eating. Getting out of the house was really important.

 

[44:55] What type of responses did you get from people when you told them about this decision?

 

Sasha said most people were supportive. Every once in a while, someone questions the decision. Some of the people she used to drink with have also come out and admitted they are struggling and she has tried to point them in the right direction for resources.

 

 

 [46:48] Rapid Fire Round 

 

  1. What would you say to your younger self?

Give her a hug and tell her everything will be ok.

 

  1. What’s your favorite ice cream flavour?

Chocolate

 

  1. What has recovery made possible for you?

To live a life of peace and to be vulnerable with others.

 

  1. What parting piece of guidance would you give to listeners thinking about ditching the booze?

Stick with it if you’re struggling to quit. The fact that you are even trying to do this right now is huge. Find resources that will work for you.

 

 

You may have to say adios to booze if... 

 

it’s 2pm on a Tuesday and you’re googling, “Do I have a drinking problem?” with one eye closed because you can’t see the phone.

 

 

Odette’s weekly challenge:

 

Make a small inventory of your relationships. Which ones would you like to see changes in? Which ones would you like to cultivate?

 

Upcoming events, retreats and courses:

  • You can find more information about our events 

 

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.

 

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 – when we choose to take care of the small things, the big things seem to take care of themselves - I love you guys”

Jan 18, 2021

Stephen took his last drink on January 24th, 2020. This is his story of living alcohol free (AF).

 

 

Odette’s weekly installment of: Finding Your Better You

 

 

“The pleasures of connecting with people are much greater than the pleasures of judging people.”- Johann Hari

 

If we show up genuinely, we can connect with someone. If we are pretending to listen, we will not connect. Only with actual connection can we truly see each other. In a little departure from talking about quitting drinking Odette is asking us to explore being a better listener. What would that mean? What would that look like? Listening to each other has the power to heal, however it’s also very hard to do. Can we be more curious and see how this can impact relationships?

 

 

 

[6:01] Odette introduces Stephen.

 

 

Stephen is 33 years old and lives in Austin, TX. He enjoys exercise, teaching tennis and using his Peloton. He’s planning to return to school in the near future.

 

 

[7:30] Can you give listeners some background on your story?

 

 

Stephen said he took his first drink at the age of 15. He was curious about it and remembers finding something that made him feel relaxed. Being so focused on tennis, alcohol was mostly a secondary thing. In 2008 he joined the military to be an Airborne Ranger, which is also where he noticed his drinking changed. He left the military in 2015 and the drinking followed him. With nothing to wake up for at 5am anymore, he was able to drink differently. After a few years he walked into an AA meeting and went all in for 7 months’ time. He began drinking again for 5 months which led him to January 2020.

 

 

[14:59] Tell me more about your being in the military and the binge drinking. Did you question your relationship with alcohol?

 

Stephen said he only questioned his drinking in the midst of a bad hangover. He was surrounded by so many others that drank the same way, so it was very normalized. Alcohol was a temporarily release from the stressors.

 

 

[19:07] Have you shifted your thinking from that of learning to endure to finding joy?

 

Stephen said he is still working on this. Coming from his sports and military background he was taught to do whatever it takes to get through something. He’s learned that only works in the short term, but the emotional impact last longer. In recovery Stephen has taught himself that it’s ok when things are easy and to go with the flow. He had to allow himself to surrender to the fact that he cannot live with alcohol in his life at all.

 

 

[22:45] What has been different this time?

 

Stephen said this time he had to adjust his all-in mentality. He’s more tied into recovery communities with actual people and listening to their struggles and stories. He gave up the idea of being perfect but at the same time accepted that he can’t be the best version of himself while drinking alcohol.

 

 

[25:06] Have you found anything in sobriety that makes you feel relaxed and free?

 

Stephen said running helps him and it’s when his body feels good and his mind is at peace. He’s working on trying to be ok with his own thoughts in his own head. Having real conversations with real people makes him feel free.

 

 

[25:57] What do you do when you have a craving?

 

Stephen said he eats. It’s simple and it works for him. He didn’t eat when drinking because he didn’t want to ruin his buzz. Now it’s the opposite. If that doesn’t work, he reaches out.

 

 

[26:57] Tell me about this year.

 

Stephen said at the beginning of COVID he was still able to be collecting a paycheck. He also went through a big breakup, which was different being sober.

 

 

[29:30] What’s your everyday routine look like?

 

Stephen said on a daily basis about connecting with people about his life and their life. Addressing mind, body and spirit, as well as attending therapy.

 

 

[31:14] How have the interactions with family and friends been?

 

Stephen said his family can now see the version of him that’s able to be present. He’s having conversations with family members who are questioning their own drinking.

 

 

[34:01] Have you figured out the why of your drinking?

 

Stephen said he’s been exploring a lot of deeper things with his therapist. He grew up in a home where he had to walk on eggshells. So, he thinks the drinking allowed him to be free of that. However, that led to all of his emotions being repressed and without an outlet except through drinking. Drinking allowed him to feel things and feel human.

 

 

[35:38] Have you found therapy to be helpful?

 

Stephen said yes. He’s an analytical person by nature and having someone to be a sounding board has been helpful. He wouldn’t have gone through a lot of the childhood trauma without his therapist.

 

 

[37:36] Has your sleep improved?

 

Stephen said not yet. He hopes it’s the last piece of the puzzle.

 

 

[39:49] Have you gone back to AA?

 

Stephen said yes, he’s working through the steps again. But he primarily focuses on a larger network for his own recovery.

 

 

 

 [41:07] Rapid Fire Round 

 

  1. What would you say to your younger self?

Stop trying to find clarity and happiness in a bottle. What happened to you as a child is not your fault

 

  1. What book are you reading right now?

Claim Your Power by Mastin Kipp

 

  1. What’s your favorite ice cream flavour?

Amy’s Ice Cream: Mexican Vanilla

 

  1. What parting piece of guidance would you give to listeners thinking about ditching the booze?

There is no perfect recovery.Find your own path, don’t look back and you aren’t alone. There are so many people living a life without booze.

 

 

You may have to say adios to booze if... 

 

you jump out of a plane drunk, because you are still drunk from the night before.

 

 

 

Odette’s weekly challenge:

 

Only you know what is best for you. Protect your energy. What works for some might not work for you. We are all here to encourage and inspire each other. We are challenging big alcohol, you are a part of this.

 

 

Upcoming events, retreats and courses:

  • You can find more information about our events 

 

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.

 

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 – when you show up as you are, you make all the difference for yourself and for the world - I love you guys”

Jan 11, 2021

Niel took his last drink on January 9th, 2020. This is his story of living alcohol free (AF).

 

 

Odette’s weekly installment of: Finding Your Better You

 

 

A few weeks ago, Odette heard a phrase that she hadn’t heard before and it struck a chord with her. It was different from the usual catch phrases that people use.

 

“Awkwardness is an indicator of learning”

 

Do we talk enough about the uncomfortable moments while on this journey? Are we allowing those moments to happen and normalizing them? When the decision to quit drinking is made, awkward moments arise, because we are feeling everything now. When we feel awkward, we feel vulnerable and feeling vulnerable makes most people want to run and hide. Odette phrases this into if/then questions to find a new path. Choosing yourself and living AF is often awkward and that’s ok! Let it feel weird until it doesn’t anymore.

 

 

 

[6:59] Odette introduces Niel.

 

 

Niel is 56 and lives in rural North Eastern California. He is a forester. He is married and has two children. For fun he likes to be outdoors. He misses swimming. He plays and builds guitars, any type of woodworking. Biking and hiking he also enjoys.

 

 

[10:08] Can you give listeners some background on your story?

 

 

Niel said he grew up in family where drinking was part of the culture. He started drinking irresponsibly / binge way in high school. He joined a fraternity in college and drank there as well. After he passed the bar exam in 2004 his drinking began to be problematic. In 2016 he stopped for a year, but then began drinking again in 2017.

 

 

[12:27] Tell me more about your year in 2016.

 

Niel said he talked to friends who were AF before this. He began exploring the idea that he might have a problem. Although he went back to drinking in 2017, he needed to experiment and decide is maybe this time it would be different.

 

 

[15:00] Given your level of drinking, how was your day to day?

 

Niel said he characterized himself as high functioning. However, he did have the repercussions of drinking that much. He found himself waking up feeling “thick” and he was irritable, unable to sleep, his weight was up, his heart was always racing, there were all kinds of manifestations.

 

 

[16:39] How were your relationships at home?

 

Niel said he was more on the irritable side. Emotionally until you pause and look in the mirror you don’t realize how bad you can be. Your actions are all reflections of your wellness.

 

 

[20:08] What’s one of your worst drinking memories?

 

Niel said there’s a highlight tape of horrors in his head. His worst memories are those about missing out on memorable moments in his life. Raising his kids, being around them for their successes. Those memories are foggy and not sharp.

 

 

[21:57] Tell me about the beginning of this year.

 

Niel said the first 3-4 days the cravings were strong towards the end of the day. He kept those at bay by distracting himself. Usually he would go outside and exercise. He replaced the liquid with soda water and lime. His cravings were more nuances. It was more about figuring out the trigger and dealing with those emotions. He’s felt so much better in the past months that it drives him to keep going. Emotionally the peaks and valleys are more manageable. Thinking through his actions and distractions are what works for him.

 

 

[26:29] Do you get any push back along the journey?

 

Niel said he’s received a lot of support from friends and family. There’s a few that don’t understand. It’s a matter of understanding any challenge from a friend, it’s from a place of not understanding or challenging their own drinking.

 

 

[28:02] What are a few things you do daily that keep you grounded?

 

Niel said he’s a very driven person. He wakes early and starts his day with the dogs. His workday is long but when he’s home he focuses on exercise. It allows his mind to detach and reflect on his day and his emotional intelligence. He helps around the house and with dinner and closing down the day. He checks in with Cafe RE at the end of the day and enjoys learning about other people’s journeys. He then starts is over the next day. When he’s traveling he listens to podcasts.

 

 

[31:16] Has your sleep improved?

 

Niel said he now sleeps mostly like the dead. His anxiety is manageable. He remembers his dreams now.

 

 

[33:02] Tell me the difference in your journey from 2016 to now.

 

Niel said he was a dry drunk in 2016. He just stopped drinking rather than trying to fix the why. He didn’t reach out for any tools to help him stop drinking, he didn’t have or seek support. He now listens carefully to other people’s similarities. He focuses on others tools. Niel looks to community now. He tries to laugh more now because humor is a great healer.

 

 

[37:28] What is your why?

 

Niel said a big one is his ability to now remove a large amount of self-inflected stress. He can step back and examine all the taxing moments in his life and move through them now without alcohol. His why has now become his how. His ability to resolve his issues of why he drank is creating the solution to how he’s stopped drinking.

 

 

[43:00] What’s your favorite NA drink?

 

Arnold Palmer or a soda water with lime / a little cranberry.

 

 

 

 [44:20] Rapid Fire Round 

 

  1. What would you say to your younger self?

Stop now you dumbass.

 

  1. What has recovery made possible?

Having memories. Giving himself a renewed lease on life.

 

  1. What’s your favorite ice cream flavour?

Chocolate, anything with chocolate.

 

  1. What parting piece of guidance would you give to listeners thinking about ditching the booze?

“If you’re going through hell, don’t stop”

Don’t stay in hell, get out of there. Listen to the similarities, the differences only give us an excuse to keep drinking. Decide and stop.

 

 

You may have to say adios to booze if... 

 

your 60 lb labradoodle falls asleep on your chest after you pass out, and you don’t wake up.

 

 

 

Odette’s weekly challenge:

 

Not only is this journey awkward, it’s also imperfect. We often only see other people’s highlight reels and happy moments. We don’t often see the struggles, the setbacks, the cravings. Keep this is mind.

 

 

Upcoming events, retreats and courses:

  • You can find more information about our events 

 

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.

 

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 – stay awkward and weird, you don’t regret it- I love you guys”

Jan 4, 2021

Chris took his last drink about 6 years ago. This is his story of living alcohol free (AF).

 

 

Odette’s weekly installment of: Finding Your Better You

 

 

A few weeks ago, Elle published an article titled “The Year of Drinking Dangerously” which explored how alcohol in 2020 was front and center. Alcohol effects everything in our society and it’s time we got serious and brought these issues to light. Alcohol is a drug that has been glamorized.  2020 taught Odette that she has grit, that she can speak up about things that matter to her, that she doesn’t have to be a people pleaser, to name a few. She is pledging to make 2021 the year where Recovery Elevator changes even more lives through unmasking alcohol. As more and more people are questioning their relationship with alcohol… LETS KEEP GOING.

 

 

 

[7:10] Odette introduces Chris.

 

 

Chris is 33 years old, originally from New Jersey and right now lives in Savannah, GA. His career began in finance, as he quit drinking, he transitioned to being a personal trainer. He also began a blog, writing the articles he wished he could have read when questioning his own drinking. This became his website and he now is a alcohol recovery coach and has a podcast related to sobriety. He likes to be physically active. Chris also has two dogs he rescued in 2020.

 

 

[16:57] Can you give listeners some background on your story?

 

 

Chris started drinking in high school but wasn’t really a partier. He was mostly into swimming and studying. However, when he did go out, he realized he could out drink all his friends. As he moved into an unhealthy relationship with alcohol, he felt like he was living a double life. Alcohol was the opposite of everything he stood for. Looking back he can see that he would have withdrawal symptoms at the age of 20 when he didn’t drink. When he left college and began working, the drinking was now just martinis and more expensive. When he did finally quit, he had to go to detox. Through his research he learned that he had been out of balance with his nutrients which alcohol only exacerbated.

 

 

[25:21] How aware were you that alcohol was the problem?

 

Chris said he was in deep denial, with outbursts of honesty. A story he tells is standing outside a liquor store one morning waiting for it to open while drinking from a bottle of water he had filled with vodka. He thought to himself “this isn’t normal.” Chris felt he was special because of that he needed to drink to deal with people and jobs. Alcohol to him was a performance enhancing drug.

 

 

[30:47] Tell me about those first couple months.

 

Chris said once he admitted to others that alcohol was a problem, he felt some inner peace and relief. He also felt the tug of war in his brain, would this be purgatory and him having to be a saint the rest of his life? Chris took the leap of faith that he would figure out what needed to be done. In rehab he began doing meditation and that opened his eyes to the fact that you can have a fulfilled life away from alcohol. Fueling his body helped him see the world in full color.

 

 

[39:35] What are simple tips help you restore your body balance?

 

Chris said there are two main factors: Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) and deficiencies in neurotransmitters. Start with a daily multivitamin and look into amino acid therapy. L Glutamine can be helpful in repairing muscles and gut health. It also turned into glucose in the brain without a spike in blood sugar.

* always speak to your doctor before beginning any regiment.

 

 

[44:52] Sleep

 

Chris said he’s recently read Why We Sleep by Matthew Walker. Chris had always had trouble sleeping and he’s now trying to optimize his sleep. He tracks his sleep and tries to get to the bottom of why his sleep pattern might have changed. Chris recommends the power of tea and drinking tea to find a blissed-out state. There’s a whole universe of benign things that can help with the psychological distraction.

 

 

 [50:39] Rapid Fire Round 

 

  1. What would you say to your younger self?

Don’t drink alcohol.

 

  1. What has recovery made possible?

Deeper relationships and be present with people.

 

  1. What’s your favorite ice cream flavour?

Talenti Mediterranean Mint

 

  1. What book are you reading right now?

Breath: The New Science of a Lost Art by James Nestor

 

  1. What parting piece of guidance would you give to listeners thinking about ditching the booze?

Try to solidify your support system and figure out how you can confide in. Don’t assume you will feel as bad as you think you will without the alcohol.

 

 

You may have to say adios to booze if... 

 

you find yourself outside a liquor store before it opens with a bottle of water refilled with vodka.

 

 

 

Odette’s weekly challenge:

 

Did you reflect on who you are trying to become? Please don’t shy away from what your heart is telling you that you deserve.

 

Upcoming events, retreats and courses:

  • You can find more information about our events 

 

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.

 

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 – Let’s continue to be trail blazers- I love you guys”

1