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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: April, 2022
Apr 25, 2022

Episode 375 – Decoupling

 

Today we have Amanda. She is 40, from Florida, and took her last drink on March 25, 2019.

 

The Bozeman Retreat has openings for men:  https://www.recoveryelevator.com/bozeman/

 

Exact Nature:  https://exactnature.com/RE 20

 

Highlights from Paul

 

Paul discusses anxiety and decoupling. Paul’s tipping point was in 2017 when his anxiety or hangxiety was so bad that he thought he was having a heart attack. As he sobered up, the anxiety temporarily worsened, then improved dramatically. 85-90% of Paul’s anxiety is gone today. Anxiety no longer controls him.

 

Decoupling is untangling the thoughts, actions, and behaviors no longer serving you. Decoupling is a muscle. Start small and watch the momentum build. 

 

You are the Placebo:  https://amzn.to/3M3ChKJ

 

 

Better Help:  www.betterhelp.com/elevator - 10% off your first month

                                                                             

[10:20]  Amanda is married to a military husband and has two children. She works as a mental health provider. She loves time with her kids, baking, working out, and spending time with other sober people. 

 

Amanda grew up in an alcoholic home. She grew up with verbal and emotional abuse and struggled with anxiety for most of her childhood. She was an athlete but quit. She began hanging out with an older crowd, and illicit drugs entered her life. She quickly reigned in the drug use. Going to school in New Orleans, her drinking escalated. Eventually, she discovered prescription drugs. She mixed them with alcohol. 

 

She observed her mental obsession with alcohol during her second pregnancy. After having her first baby, she used alcohol to cope with the stress of motherhood and having a military husband who was gone a lot. At a birthday party, she drank a bottle of wine and still wanted more. She hoped her tolerance would reset, but it didn’t work that way.

 

Amanda was highly functioning, working full time, eating well, exercising, and caring for her children. Amanda described herself as arrogant because she knew the ins and outs of addiction because of her career but continued to drink.

 

After relocating from one part of the country to another, Amanda thought it was time to reign in her drinking. She started a fitness plan that included some aggressive nutritional goals that excluded alcohol to be more present. She felt great, but her drinking resumed. At her grandfather’s funeral, her husband noticed she drank an entire bottle of wine at 9 AM. Shortly after that, she knew she was “done” and told her husband she had a problem and needed help. 

 

Amanda discovered Recovery Elevator and Café Re during her first two years. She has found the resources she needs to maintain her sobriety. She was initially active in AA. Community is now the core of her recovery. Feeling understood and accepted for all her parts is amazing. Amanda is learning to create distance from her thoughts, accept them and have compassion for herself and others.

 

Odette’s Summary

 

Odette thanks listeners for all the support and kind words she received during her last introduction to the podcast.   Remember that you are not alone and together is always better.

 

Upcoming events, retreats, and courses:

  • You can find more information about our events

 

Resources

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

Recovery Elevator YouTube - Subscribe here!

Sobriety Tracker iTunes 

 

Recovery Elevator –Every time we say no to booze, we say yes to ourselves.

I love you guys.

Apr 18, 2022

Episode 374 – Then go back again

 

Today we have Meegan. She is 37, from Georgia, and took her last drink on April 21, 2019.

 

Exact Nature:  https://exactnature.com/RE 20

 

Highlights from Paul

 

Addiction has the propensity to crack you open. We fight and dig our heels in, but eventually, the Addiction wins. This doesn’t mean you are destined to drink forever, but the Addiction cracks you open. Paul encourages listeners to use their energy to find what recovery method works for them. When you find it, go back again to the beginning. You will find that the messages you heard early in recovery have different lessons for you later in recovery. Go back again. Listen to those podcasts again, read the quit lit again or recovery books again, and do the steps again. You are a different person with a new set of skills,  experiences, and tools.    Revisiting those messages often provides a new value bomb. 

 

Better Help:  www.betterhelp.com/elevator - 10% off your first month

                                                                             

[11:24] Meegan is a Family Nurse Practitioner and is married with three children. She loves running, snowboarding, and writing. Meegan describes a happy childhood until her parents had a tumultuous divorce, and it broke her heart. Life felt out of control. Meegan developed an eating disorder. She experimented with drinking in high school and described it as a rite of passage. Meegan made a few geographic moves for school.

 

After a few moves, Meegan landed in Georgia, got married, and immediately had a baby. She was part of the Mommy wine culture. That was a lightbulb moment. She recognized that drinking with the baby at age 24 wasn’t good. Wine calmed her down after dealing with the stress of night shifts. Meegan started having extreme panic attacks. 

 

Training for a 100-mile ultra-marathon made her drinking take a back burner. Her panic attacks subsided. At 30, she got pregnant with twins. Her father died around the same time, and it broke her. The stress of twins and her father’s death caused her drinking to escalate. 

 

Value Bomb:  You can be the best version of yourself or be hungover, but you can’t be both. 

 

As her drinking progressed, her hangovers became more debilitating. During a trip to Europe, her solution to hangovers was to continue drinking. While in Capri, she started having bad withdrawal symptoms. As a nurse, she knew what that meant.

 

After returning home, she knew moderation wouldn’t work. Shortly after an embarrassing time with her family, she had a moment of clarity. She fell to her knees and asked God for help. The moment of clarity was a combination of spirituality, physical health, and mental health. She called her two best friends and promised her daughter she would never drink again. Her sister encouraged her to get a therapist.

 

Meegan acknowledged that she didn’t learn healthy coping mechanisms. In recovery, Meegan is learning to feel her feelings. Perfectionism was a theme in her early years. Telling her story is a way for Meegan to let others know that failure is okay.

 

Meegan “loves the quote, “Addiction is an experience, not an identity. “

 

Kris and Meegan encourage listeners to find the recovery that works for you.

 

Kris’s Summary

 

Friendships in recovery are invaluable. You experience people who are present, listen with their hearts, and never shame you. Kris encourages listeners to lean in to discomfort. Share your experience. 

 

Upcoming events, retreats, and courses:

  • You can find more information about our events

 

Resources

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

Recovery Elevator YouTube - Subscribe here!

Sobriety Tracker iTunes 

 

Recovery Elevator –You are the only one who can do this, but you don’t have to do it alone. I love you guys.

Apr 11, 2022

Episode 373– Control and Connection

 

Today we have Chris. She is 46, from Baltimore, and took her last drink on August 28, 2016.

 

Exact Nature:  https://exactnature.com/RE 20

 

Highlights from Paul

 

Paul thanks all the guests who have shared their stories to help us on the path toward sobriety. Paul wants to hear about your favorite episode or the value bombs that resonated with you. Please include the episode number if possible. Contact Paul at: info@recoveryelevator.com.

 

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How are you reconciling the elements of control in your life? Paul talks about our struggles with control at the macro and micro levels. Is the opposite of control connection? We have never been more disconnected.

 

Paul’s homework for listeners is to invite a friend out to coffee instead of placing your mental energies on trying to control things. Go on a walk with your dog in Nature. Learn to play the ukulele with us, go on a meditation retreat, join Café RE, call your mom, volunteer at a soup kitchen, write a letter to someone in jail. All our lives depend on this, and we all have to do our part, which I know we can and know we will.

 

Better Help:  www.betterhelp.com/elevator - 10% off your first month

                                                                             

[10:16] Sherrie lives in Baltimore and has two adult children. She is a massage therapist and teaches movement. She is a competitive Irish dancer; she loves paddle boarding and hiking.

 

Alcoholism was a big part of Chris’ family. There was a lot of shame, and she steered clear of alcohol. She was the designated driver for her friends in high school. After she was married, she started drinking, and it rapidly progressed into a problem. After losing a pregnancy, she had a white light moment, and she went down a very dark hole. Alcohol became her coping mechanism to turn off the pain. She began losing clients and students and realized it was time to stop.

 

Physical pain and discomfort were warning signs for Chris that she wasn’t headed in a good direction. Her husband never thought her drinking was a problem. Moderation was his preferred choice. He didn’t think she needed to quit altogether, even when she asked for help. Waking up in a blur became commonplace. Chris started listening to recovery podcasts, and fear became the impetus to get her to quit drinking.

 

Chris’ clients started to notice a difference in her when she quit drinking. They asked, what’s different? She began her sober journey alone and listened to sobriety podcasts, including Recovery Elevator. She kept it quiet, even from her partner.   Chris attended a Recovery Elevator retreat and realized she was a dry drunk. Community became part of her recovery, and she credits Paul’s work for expanding her view of a sober life.

 

Lifestyle changes, including diet and exercise, became critical to Chris’ recovery. As she continued to get better, her husband got worse and tried to sabotage her efforts. Chris relies on community and meditative movement to maintain her sobriety. 

 

Talking openly about alcohol use with her daughters has been crucial to Chris. They have open discussions about alcohol, marijuana, and other addictive substances. She reminds her daughters that she doesn’t drink and why and is very open about the predisposition for addiction in their family. Chris appreciates the power and control that have returned to her in a life without alcohol.

 

Odette’s Summary

 

[48:12] “The crap does not mean you are broken; it means you have room to grow.”  Odette encourages us to look at the opportunities to learn, change our perceptions and live a different life. You are not alone – together is always better.

 

Upcoming events, retreats, and courses:

  • You can find more information about our events

 

Resources

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

Recovery Elevator YouTube - Subscribe here!

Sobriety Tracker iTunes 

 

Recovery Elevator –Let's continue to be trailblazers in recovery together.   I love you guys.

Apr 4, 2022

Episode 372– The three stages of healing

 

Today we have Sherrie. She is 58, from Oregon, and she took her last drink on January 21, 2019.

 

Highlights from Paul

 

Paul explains the stages of healing have less to do with how much time you were drinking and more to do with how you view your problems.

 “The Energy Codes”: https://amzn.to/3I9MgMh

 

The three stages of healing are:

  1. Victimhood – you are playing the victim card
  2. Self Help – you identify the problem, then solve it
  3. Creatorship – there was never a problem; drinking was there to help me. You take responsibility for everything in your life.

 

Better Help:  www.betterhelp.com/elevator - 10% off your first month

                                                                             

[13:52] Sherrie lives in Oregon, has two children and three grandchildren. She loves hiking, kayaking, house projects, and her dog.

 

Sherrie lived overseas during her childhood. She started working at 16 and drank because older workers never asked about her age. Drinking was prevalent in her youth.   She was married young, but drinking wasn’t an issue until there was a turning point in her marriage. Her marriage had its ups and downs for many years. Empty nest syndrome changed her drinking, and gastric bypass surgery changed how her body processed alcohol. She could drink large amounts of alcohol and began to blackout. 

 

Sherrie gained weight in hopes that her husband would leave her. As she approached her fifties (her father passed at age 54), she developed patterns of self-sabotage. After her second DUI, she knew it was time to make a change. She started counseling and stayed away from triggering moments like going to the grocery store. Her life revolved around recovery. Anytime she wasn’t working, she was focused on recovery.

 

AA is a significant part of Sherrie’s recovery, AND she incorporates other things that work for her like Café RE, sober travel, meditation, etc. Finding activities that take her focus off wanting to drink helps Sherrie stay on track. Sherrie has a positive outlook and looks forward to fun adventures ahead.

 

Odette’s Summary

 

[56:52] You are doing a great job. Acknowledge the work and effort you are making. Validate your own work. Be your own cheerleader. You are not alone – together is always better.

 

Upcoming events, retreats, and courses:

  • You can find more information about our events

 

Resources

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

Recovery Elevator YouTube - Subscribe here!

Sobriety Tracker iTunes 

 

Recovery Elevator –You took the elevator down. You’ve got to take the stairs back up.   I love you guys.

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