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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: Page 2
Mar 29, 2021

Episode 319 - When I was stressed out at work or stressed by a social situation, alcohol would fix it temporarily, until it didn’t.  Now I’m accepting moods, feelings and phases come and go and it’s all okay.

 

Korie took her last drink on March 21, 2019. She is from Texas and is 32 years old.  This is her story of living alcohol-free (AF).

 

A request from Recover Elevator

 

We have a request; we would like to hear more from you!  Please consider making a one-minute video sharing your, “you might need to ditch the booze if… story”.  Hold your camera sideways, make it less than a minute and send it to: info@recoveryelevator.com.  Make it authentic to yourself and your journey.  We will post your video on Instagram.  If you share your Instagram handle, we will post that as well. We look forward to seeing more of you on our page.  Instagram:  @recovery elevator.

 

Finding Your Better You – Odette’s weekly message

 

Rediscovering your life beyond recovery.  You are all unique.  We are more than a drinking problem; we are more than recovery.  The life we now enjoy would disappear if we returned to drinking.  It is easy to feel  uniqueness –submerged in recovery.  In sobriety we don’t know when things will get better, but they do.  Sobriety is a piece of your whole life.  We all have the opportunity to learn and re-learn who we are. 

 

Maintenance is important to secure your sobriety.  If you stay the course, you get to graduate.   You always focus on maintaining sobriety, but it’s not all day every day, it becomes a piece of your broader life.  There are so many benefits to being present in sobriety – you can have your cake and eat it too.

 

[8:12] Odette introduces Korie

 

Korie said her last drink was 3/21/19.  She grew up in Austin, Texas and is 32 years old.  Korie was abroad and lived in Japan and Singapore and came to the US when she was 6 years old.  She is engaged and just bought a home outside of Austin.  Pre-quarantine, Korie was a social butterfly.  Now, she stays home more than she used to and loves getting outside, running, reading, drawing and anything artsy.

 

[11:46]  Tell us about your history with drinking.

 

Korie doesn’t remember her first drink of alcohol.  She would have a sip or two of her Mom’s wine and thought it was disgusting.  In high school she was in a few programs that required her to sign a contract saying she wouldn’t drink or party.  She followed the rules.  In college she remembers drinking, getting dizzy, self-control was gone, and she didn’t want it to stop because she liked the feeling.  She didn’t drink often. 

 

She worked in the restaurant industry which breeds lots of drinking.  It felt normal, until it didn’t.  When she graduated from college, she moved to Spain to become an Au Pair and drank a lot there.  She remembers staying out all night, being hung over and thinking she may have a problem and her drinking wasn’t normal.   The nightlife continued when she returned to the US.  She remembers getting drunk, getting sick and making bad decisions?

 

[15:13]  What thoughts were you having about your drinking?

 

Korie felt pretty justified because she judged her drinking based on what other people were doing.  She knew it wasn’t who she wanted to be

 

It started to feel not right.  When she left the restaurant industry, she recognized it wasn’t normal to drink every night.  She had a broader circle of friends to compare herself to.  She was working as a virtual concierge and was calling in to work, saying she was working from home, but just too hungover to go in.  She realized she was still drinking like she had in her twenties.  She never wants to experience an emotional rock bottom again. 

 

[18:46] Did you ever talk to anyone about your drinking?

 

Korie said a former boyfriend spoke to her about her drinking.  She got defensive and thought he was a bit paranoid.  Looking back, she realizes he was right to be concerned.  At 24, Korie verbalized concerns to her best friend, but kept drinking.  She started asking questions to people who went to AA. 

 

[20:48]  Did you ever attempt moderation?

 

Korie took a few weeks off of drinking before she stopped altogether.  On March 21 she had three glasses of wine and realized she couldn’t stop.  She knew the urge was so great and knew she was powerless over the urge.  She stopped then and that was it, she was done.

 

[22:40]  Have you asked yourself why you drank or why it was so hard to stop?

 

Korie said it was a variety of things, but the feeling of not belonging and trying to numb that feeling was at the top of the list.  Toward the latter part of her drinking, she began to feel less than when comparing herself to her friends and alcohol helped … until it didn’t.  Korie’s self-esteem has substantially improved since she quit drinking.  Her skin is clearer, she feels healthier, happier and she isn’t so self-conscious anymore.

 

When Korie was stressed out at work or stressed by a social situation, alcohol would fix it temporarily, until it didn’t.  Now she is accepting moods, feelings and phases come and go and it’s all okay.  Korie works hard at being accepting of others. 

 

[30:17]  How did things change for you after you quit drinking?

 

Korie said she felt different, it was black and white, and she knew she couldn’t drink anymore.  She listened to several podcasts, read some blogs  and followed sober people on Instagram.  She decided to check out an AA meeting near her home and it was all women.  It was exactly what she needed at the time and she appreciated everyone’s honesty.  Nobody glossed over their emotions.  In addition, she started going to Sans Bar which is an alcohol-free bar.  She was scared, but met the owner, Chris Marshall, and felt welcomed.  She was very connected with the sober community in Austin until Covid hit.  Now podcasts and connecting with friends keep her sober.

 

[35:26]  What do you do when you get a craving?  What tools work for you?

 

Korie doesn’t get cravings often and has learned she is usually hungry when she gets a craving.  She eats and drinks water.  When it’s an emotional craving, she turns off her technology, goes for a walk or connects with friends.  Vocalizing the craving gives it less power and the cravings pass within 20 minutes.

 

 

[36:36]  How did your family and friends react to your new lifestyle?

 

Korie told her best friend who was supportive and didn’t make a big fuss.  Their friendship became closer.  Some of her friends were surprised and asked why she quit drinking, but she never heard anything negative.  Her friends make sure to have AF beverages.  Her parents have been very supportive, particularly her Dad.  Her mom respects her choice but doesn’t completely understand it.  Dating after sobriety was a challenge.  Several dates ended quickly.  Her fiancé is supportive and asks lots of questions; he is a great partner.

 

[40:02]  Did you experience fear of missing out (FOMO)?

 

Korie said absolutely, but within a few weeks she would hang out at Sans Bar.  She went out, drank soda water with lime, and loved that at midnight she went home, instead of to the next bar.  Post quarantine, she has no FOMO at all.

 

[41:45] Has your sleep improved?

 

Korie said she slept through the night immediately and she stopped grinding her teeth.  Her dog interrupts her sleep occasionally, but her sleep is dramatically improved.

 

[42:25]  What do you say when people offer you a drink?

 

She says no, thanks.  Early on she said, I don’t drink – as a way to be accountable.  Now she just asks for a Coke or a Topo Chico.  Most people don’t bat an eye. 

 

[43:04] What is your favorite AF beverage?

 

Coffee with almond creamer – iced or hot.  She also loves sparkling water.

 

[43:33] Do you have any triggers?

 

Korie said work stress is her biggest trigger, particularly at the end of the day.  She takes a step back and practices calming the trigger or craving. 

During the summer when it’s hot, or after a run, she often craves alcohol.

 

[45:34]  Rapid Fire Round

 

  1. What are you excited about right now?

 

Korie is excited to talk to Odette and get her story out there.  She is hoping to help others and excited about getting her two-year chip.

 

  1. What books are you reading?

 

Korie is reading the John Adams biography and she loves American history.  She also reads the Bible regularly.

 

  1. What is a lightbulb moment for you in this journey?

 

I am ok just the way I am and people like me when I’m not drinking.

 

  1. What is your favorite ice cream flavor?

 

Moose tracks.  It can be found in the Northwest.  It’s chocolate fudge, peanut butter cups and chocolate chips in vanilla ice cream.

 

  1. What piece of guidance would you give listeners who are considering ditching the booze?

 

It’s worth it and your life doesn’t stop.  It’s so worth it.

 

You might have to say adios to booze if …

 

You are so hungover, that the next day you are throwing up at 8 PM.

 

Mentions:

 

http://thesansbar.com/

 

 

 

Odette’s Summary

 

You are more than this struggle, not just your drinking struggle, but any struggle.  Leverage recovery to your advantage to build a foundation and you can be whoever you want to be.  Recovery is a lot of work, particularly in the beginning.  Keep your head up, don’t get discouraged and remember it gets better.

 

You are not alone and together is always better.  You are a bright star in the universe.  Shine on!

 

 Upcoming events, retreats, and courses:

  • Bozeman 2021 (August 18-22, 2021). This is our flagship annual retreat held in the pristine forests of Big Sky Country, 10 miles south of Bozeman, Montana. During this 5-day event, you’ll discover how to expand the boundaries of your comfort zone.
  • 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 

 

 

“Recovery Elevator – Without the darkness you would never

know the light - I love you guys”

 

 

Mar 22, 2021

Episode 318 - No matter what comes your way, you are exactly where you are supposed to be.  So, live with it, don’t try to change it and do the next right thing.

 

Tony took his last drink on October 24, 2020.  He is a 42-year-old Canadian.  This is his story of living alcohol-free (AF)

 

Finding Your Better You – Odette’s weekly message

 

Recently Odette has been asking listeners, what is a perk of getting sober? The answers have included, no hangovers, improved sleep, wallet and overall health.

 

Odette also asked listeners about the ripple effect, the not so obvious outcomes of living AF.  The responses included:

 

  • Ability to manage my finances
  • Ability to help others who are struggling
  • Stronger and more meaningful relationships
  • I am present and more productive participant of my life
  • I understand and feel gratitude
  • I am more aligned with the person I work so hard to be
  • I am a better employee
  • Building confidence
  • Better hand-eye coordination
  • Path of emotional discovery
  • Running and being active
  • Understanding my authentic identity and not being so self-conscious when sharing my authentic self with the world
  • I learned to ski
  • Anything is possible when you are not hungover
  • Patient
  • Nicer
  • House is cleaner
  • Tackling projects
  • New friends
  • People in sobriety are not boring, they are cool and fun
  • Repairing relationships
  • Procrastinate less
  • Better parent, more firm, able to hold boundaries and be kinder
  • More playful
  • Don’t need a shield (glasses) to hide anymore
  • I’m a morning person
  • I have fun
  • I binge eat less
  • I’m proud
  • I am more organized

 

Sobriety tools become life tools that help us become better versions of ourselves.  Odette is more forgiving of herself and others.   Her standards, for herself and others have changed.  She is less of a perfectionist.  She has more grace toward herself and others.  She is more connected to her humanity and doing her best, day by day.  She says what she really means, vs what she thinks she needs to say.  She is okay with not being liked by everyone and aware of her tendency to be a people pleaser.

 

What are your unexpected perks of sobriety?

 

[8:50] Odette introduces Tony.

 

Tony took his last drink on October 24, 2020.  He is from St. Paul, Alberta, Canada. Has 3 children: a son (18), a daughter (15), a daughter (10) and a stepson (23).  He is currently a full-time student since his career came to a halt when he entered rehab last year.  Tony enjoys anything outdoors, particularly tobogganing, snowboarding, skiing …anything outside.

He is currently separated from his wife.

 

[12:34] Tell us about your history with drinking.

 

Tony lost Mom when he was 13 in a tragic car accident.  His first drink was shortly after that and by15 he remembers getting blackout drunk.  Drinking made him feel bullet-proof.   It helped him avoid the pain of grief.

 

He did well in school, he was an honors student.  After graduating from high school, he followed his Dad’s working on the road.  He would binge drink occasionally.

He got into the oilfield business.   He said, you earn a lot of money, work hard and play hard.  When he was on the road, he and his colleagues would party.  His drinking was normalized because everyone did it.  He and his high school girlfriend had a son. 

 

When he returned home, his drinking was chaotic.  He drank more, passed out regularly.  His drinking felt normalized, because everyone was doing it. 

 

His Dad offered him a job as a crew supervisor.  He was trying to taper his drinking because his son was around, and his daughter was on the way.  As he went into management he isolated more, which led to drinking when he got back to his hotel.  He would average 5-6 beers a night.

 

He also began engaging with other women while he was on the road.  He got caught and within four months, his girlfriend was done with him. He immediately jumped into another relationship; it was perfect because they both drank to excess.  His drinking continued to escalate. 

 

[18:02] You have mentioned your drinking was normalized.  Did you have conversations with yourself about your drinking?

 

Tony said he believed his behavior was normal.  He followed his father’s example.  He saw his Dad as the best Dad in the world, his Dad never brought his problems home or drank after work.  Tony went to more extremes than his father.  He needed the alcohol to feel normal.

 

[19:46] How did your relationship unfold?

 

Tony was married within seven months and he got married to spite his first girlfriend who was the mother of his first two children.  They welcomed a child after a year.  Within 14 months, his wife asked for a divorce.  He entered a 12-step program to save his marriage, but it about saving the relationship, not his own development.  His wife filed for divorce and he went back to work on the drilling rigs.  He went home and his doctor started him on Ativan.  He drove home, blacked out and was in a head on collision with a semi-truck.  He lost his arm in that accident.  His wife never came to the hospital.  He was devastated, but his drinking ramped up.

 

Tony started looking for a relationship, drinking 5 night a week, trying to rehabilitate after losing his arm and he was offered a job with his Dad’s company.  His drinking continued to escalate, and he started losing days.  On the surface he was highly functioning, making lots of money.  He didn’t think his drinking was a problem. 

 

[23:52] How was your heart feeling?  Did you enjoy drinking?

 

Tony said he was transitioning from enjoying drinking, but once he was intoxicated, he was going through the motions.  Most of his happiness was just pretending.  He also realized his arm was never going to grow back.  He gave up on life.  Within two years, he met his current wife and they really hit it off.  He was honest about his journey and he was happy initially.  His co-dependency continued to emerge.  He proposed and got married.  His drinking slowed down, but he wasn’t happy with his life, his promotions, his income, his car, nothing was ever enough.  A friend invited him and his wife to a music festival and Tony let loose.  After that, his drinking ramped up.  He was the life of the party and everything felt real again.  He got a job working for the government so he could be home.  The money wasn’t great, and he started drinking every night in the garage.  He often fell asleep in the garage.  The alcohol stopped working, so he started smoking marijuana.  Marijuana became a pattern, but within 5 months it stopped working.  He started doing hard drugs, specifically cocaine.

 

He recognized in 2019 that he needed to go to rehab because he was addicted to cocaine.  He hid his cocaine addiction well from his family.  He discussed it with his wife and went to a treatment center in January of 2020 with the intention of getting clean and saving his family.  Upon discharge, he worked his program and got a sponsor.  He returned to work and within 45 days he relapsed.  He went to Fort McMurray (a hot bed for addiction) and when he returned home, he picked a fight with his wife, drank 40 ounces of Scotch, destroyed the house and had suicidal ideations.  He had a plan to kill himself with heroin but was pulled over by the Royal Canadian police and woke up in a jail cell.  While in jail, he had chest pains and was hospitalized. The doctor advised he was having an allergic reaction to the alcohol.  After he was released, he lost his job.   Tony continued to have suicidal ideations.  He asked his son to take him to the hospital and he was admitted to the psych ward and was sent to a treatment facility.  He opened up and got honest.  After he was released, he decided to go back to school.  He moved to BC, enjoyed school, isolated himself and relapsed.

 

On October 23rd, he took his last drink/drug.  He had a gun on one side and a phone with his sponsor’s number on the other side.  Within a few hours, he called his sponsor and began working his program and the steps.  He now lives in Medicine Hat and he says every time he tells his story, it gets a little bit lighter.

 

[37:03]. What has been the contributing factor to your resilience?

 

Tony said his resilience comes from his Dad.  His Dad is his hero; he always gets up after he falls down.  He quit drinking and never picked up again.  He made it through many challenges and helped Tony to realize who he is.

 

Tony has pushed his Dad away several times which he attributes to addiction.

 

[39:34] You have said that your life is re-starting, does that give you hope?

 

Tony said that in the last 75 days he has never been happier.  He had lots of time not drinking before, but he wasn’t working a program.  He is so glad he never picked up that gun and he his son are now best friends.

 

Tony is proud that he has been able to put the substances down and rebuild his life. 

 

[41:18]. Tell me how your body has responded to sobriety?

 

Tony said he was fortunate because he detoxed before going to treatment.  He never went on benders, so the physical detox wasn’t terrible (the cold sweats, shakes, etc.).  In sobriety, he lost 20 pounds, he is hiking and tries not to beat his body up.  He tries to get good sleep and helps his body and feels amazing.

 

[43:54]. Tell me about your spirit.  How have you healed emotionally?

 

Tony has two sponsors (NA and AA).  He speaks with one for 30 minutes minimum, daily.  He also talks to another addict or alcoholic daily.  He believes it is important to stay connected.  He goes to AA and NA meetings.  He sees a therapist once a month and a trauma counselor once a month.

 

His sponsor has told him, no matter where you are, it’s where you are supposed to be.  Deal with it, don’t try to change it and do the next right thing.

 

[48:18]. Rapid Fire Round

 

  1. What are you excited and hopeful about right now?

Completing my schooling so I can enroll in an additions counseling program.

 

  1. What would you tell your younger self?

Don’t give up on yourself.  You will have bad days, but there are more good ones.

 

  1. What is your favorite ice cream flavor?

Vanilla with chocolate syrup and sprinkles.

 

  1. Do you like Tim Horton’s (coffee)?

Yes, but I prefer McDonald’s coffee.

 

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

No matter what you are not alone.  Give those that reach out to help you a chance.  Let them love you until you can love yourself.

 

You might need to Ditch the Booze if ….

 

You are drinking Jack Daniels and Coke out of your prosthetic arm.

 

Odette’s Weekly Challenge

 

Odette continues to find unexpected joys in being sober.  She is learning to slow down.  While she still has a full plate, she isn’t looking for extra things to fill up her time.  She likes herself, so she doesn’t have to hide anymore.  She chases the pauses and feels her feelings instead of chasing the highs.  She knows she is not perfect and has learned to appreciate her progress.

 

Remember you are not alone and together is always better.  This journey is full of unexpected surprises.  Enjoy the ride!

 

 

 

Upcoming events, retreats, and courses:

  • Bozeman 2021 (August 18-22, 2021) This is our flagship annual retreat held in the pristine forests of Big Sky Country, 10 miles south of Bozeman, Montana. During this 5-day event, you’ll discover how to expand the boundaries of your comfort zone.
  • 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 

 

 

“Recovery Elevator – Without the darkness you would never

know the light - I love you guys”

 

Mar 15, 2021

Episode 317  - Lean into the support from people who want to help you.  Dig into yourself.  There is an endless well of spirit, heart, and capacity that we all have. We just need to tap into it—everything you need you have.

 

Lunita took her last drink on October 10, 2020. She is from San Diego.  This is her story of living alcohol-free (AF)

 

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

 

Finding Your Better You – Odette’s weekly message

 

There is a myth of sobriety, that sobriety is not fun.  Odette finds joy when people debunk this myth.  Some of her favorite badass sober stories include:

 

Bradley Cooper – sober at 29 years old.   He attributes his career success to his sobriety.

Brad Pitt – credits his sobriety to Bradley Cooper.  

Florence Welsh – sobriety does not doom you to boredom. 

David Lloyd George, British Prime Minister in the early 1900’s, backed the licensing bill. 

Dax Shepherd says he wouldn’t have anything he has without his sobriety.  His guests and podcast sponsors are a lot of fun.

Anthony Hopkins recently hit 45 years, sober saying, “Hang in there.  Today is the tomorrow you were so worried about yesterday.  Young- people, don’t give up.  Just keep in there”

Cristiano Ronaldo, a Portuguese soccer player, is sober.  His father passed from alcohol abuse, and Cristiano has changed his life trajectory and is a role model of sobriety for his family.

 

Al Pacino, Jamie Lee Curtis, Robert Downey, Jr., Eminem, Chrissy Teigen, Keith Urban, Kelly Osbourne, Ben Affleck, Gillian Jacobs, James Franco, John Travolta, Shakira, J.Lo, Stephen King, Eva Mendes, Tom Cruise,  Natalie Portman, Elton John, Zac Efron, Tyra Banks, Daniel Radcliffe, Demi Lovato, Chris Martin (Coldplay) among many others are on the sober team.

 

We are not alone, we are not boring, quite the contrary.  Sobriety is the gateway to authenticity.  How do you feel about joining the alcohol-free club and staying in it with us?

 

[8:57] Odette Introduces Lunita

 

Lunita is Latina like Odette.  She hit reset on  October 10, 2020.  She is an American-born bi-cultural person from San Diego and a single mom.  Her father is from Panama, and her mother is from Mexico.  Her daughters are 9 and 11.  She is a yoga teacher and healing arts practitioner.  She loves nature, plant medicine, yoga, and she is a poet, writer, painter and loves anything to do with arts and the body. 

 

[11:42]  Tell us about your history with drinking?

 

Lunita took her first drink at 14 in Mexico, where the lines are a little more blurred.  As she looks back at that time, drinking gave her a sense of calm and inner knowing that she had never felt before.  Her nervous system was soothed by alcohol.  She was a highly sensitive child, and her parents didn’t know how to manage her gifts. 

 

She drank through her teenage years into her twenties.  Occasionally she would blackout.  She liked drinking.  She said alcohol took her from a highly sensitive introvert to a comfortable, fun drunk.  It awakened her artistic side.  She didn’t want to stop because it was fun. 

 

Fast forward, Lunita got pregnant, got married, had two children, and drinking became her coping mechanism for managing parenting as a young adult.    She was a part of the mommy wine culture.  She realized she was drinking every night.  After she and her husband separated, her drinking became dark.  She drank every night while trying to hold it together for work and her daughters.  She hated her life and felt terrible and disconnected from herself every day.  Her husband and best friend made comments about her drinking, but she didn’t want to stop. Drinking became a medication, a chemical dependency.  Alcohol was sinking Lunita.

 

In her thirties, she was cornered by a cousin, then her best friend who caught her sneaking drinks or blacking out. 

 

[17:19]  How did you respond to the comments from other people?

 

Lunita said she was telling herself it was ok.  She would get defensive or appease others with slogans like “mommy happy hour”  “5 o’clock somewhere”.  She was presentable, so she didn’t think there was a problem. 

 

She found herself being very inconsistent.  She was eating clean, practicing yoga,  running, drinking green smoothies, but drinking every night.  She was aware of the dissonance, but she still didn’t want to stop drinking.

 

[20:52}  Tell me about the shift within you.

 

Lunita said she started drinking hard liquor instead of beer or wine because she could get drunk faster, with fewer calories.  Her body reacted right away.  The hangovers became worse, she lost her appetite, and the fun of drinking turned into darkness.  She began to experience rock bottom moments in relationships or at work.  She was no longer in denial but wasn’t sure what to do.

 

Four years ago, her friend said, “you’ve got to do something.” She was sober for two years.  Since then, she’s had some resets.  She knew it was die or get sober.

 

[24:06] Have you identified the reasons why you would drink again, and what tools have you added along the way?

 

Lunita said community, healing, yoga, meditation, and plants allowed her to release alcohol from her life for two years.  She felt alive, vital, and fresh.  Then she said she thought she could pursue healthy drinking with wine or beer, no hard liquor.  She wasn’t blacking out, but she noticed a gradual backslide with her relationships and her work.  The old habit wasn’t serving her anymore.  She had a brief period of drinking again but was sober for six months.  In October, she reset her self-talk and said, I am not doing anything that doesn’t serve me.  That became a massive shift for her, from her highest self.   She doesn’t choose anything that doesn’t suit her anymore.

 

She now focuses on activism about alcohol.  She believes it is a privilege to have a functional relationship with alcohol.  Now that she is sober, the work she is offering the world makes a difference.

 

[31:16]  Tell me more about this time being different?  How do you deal with cravings or discomfort?

 

Lunita said she deals with discomfort by leveraging therapy.  As a human, she wants to do her own work while continuing to help others.  Her therapist has been crucial.  Accountability through community has been instrumental for her.   She said that having a sober partner has made an enormous difference for her, and she appreciates his support.  Community is huge for Lunita, and her yoga practice, breathwork, herbs, and running are pivotal.  They help healthily regulate her nervous system.

 

Lunita drinks embarrassing amounts of Pellegrino, teas, tonics, and elixirs to overcome cravings.

 

[35:21]  You described yourself as a sensitive person, an empath.  How has the acceptance of your true essence shifted your ability to be authentic to yourself?

 

Lunita said it had been a journey and a stubborn need to overcome the distortions, toxic family structure, the lies she told herself, and accept she is not like anyone else and isn’t meant to be.  Her reclamation of herself came from sobriety and being sober.  She avoided talking about recovery during her first two years of sobriety because of the shame.  Now she knows some of the most radical, authentic beings have issues with addiction.  She is learning to make space for herself, rebel for herself, and heal herself so she can be an example for her daughters.

 

[41:46] Tell me about your relationships and how they have shifted over the years?

 

Lunita said the law of quantum physics means our vibe attracts people who are with us.    She was attracting certain people who were looking for a healing, medicine, or heart.  Those relationships were not serving her because they were one-way relationships.  Now she has an amazing partner because she is serving her highest self.  She attracts people who participate equally in relationships with her.  She was dating the same version of who she was.  When she started honoring her true self, all of her relationships changed.  She now attracts beautiful heart-centered people.

 

[46:39}  Rapid Fire Round

 

  1. What are you excited about right now?

I am completely myself – for better or worse.  In every relationship, in every moment, I am myself.  It is such a relief.

 

  1. What would you say to your younger self?

Your weirdness is magic.  You don’t have to try to be cool, Do YOU.

 

  1. What is your favorite ice cream flavor?

Chocolate chip cookie dough

 

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

You are so much braver and more capable than you think.  If I can do it, you can do it.  Seek support from people who want to help you.  Dig into yourself.   There is an endless well of spirit and heart.  We just have to tap into that – it’s there.  I promise everything you need you have.

 

You may have to say adios to booze if ….

 

If you are hiding bottles.

 

Odette’s Weekly Challenge

Search for sober people in your interest bubbles (sober Mom’s, sober artists, sober photographers, sober writers).  We are all out here; you just have to look closer.  Denzel Washington said, “I made a commitment to completely cut out drinking and anything that might hamper me from getting my mind and body together.  The floodgates of goodness have opened upon me:  spiritually, emotionally, and financially. 

 

You are not alone, together is always better.  Welcome to the sober club.  I promise it's going to be fun. 

 

 

 

Upcoming events, retreats, and courses:

  • Bozeman 2021 (August 18-22, 2021) This is our flagship annual retreat held in the pristine forests of Big Sky Country, 10 miles south of Bozeman, Montana. During this 5-day event, you’ll discover how to expand the boundaries of your comfort zone.
  • 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 

 

 

“Recovery Elevator – Without the darkness you would never

know the light - I love you guys”

 

 

 

 

Mar 8, 2021

Episode 316 – When I get an urge or a craving, I'll be better next time this creeps up.

 

Paul took his last drink on February 29, 2020.  He is from Long Island and is 30 years old.  This is his story of living alcohol-free (AF).

 

Today's sponsor is Firebrew.  They are also sponsoring our Bozeman retreat.  

 https://www.mindyourmanna.co/  Discount Code:  RE10off

 

Finding Your Better You – Odette's weekly message

 

What is the difference between being sober and being in recovery?  The definition of sobriety is the condition of not having any measurable levels or effects from alcohol or other drugs.  Sobriety is also considered to be the natural state of a human being at birth. 

 

Recovery signifies you know you have a problem and are trying to fix it.  It doesn't mean you resolve your issues right away.  You recognize something is wrong, which is a critical part of getting help. 

 

https://7summitpathways.com/blog/what-does-it-mean-in-recovery/#:~:text=What%20Being%20in%20Recovery%20Means,synonymous%20with%20%E2%80%9Cin%20remission.%E2%80%9D

 

When you are in recovery, you feel a kinship to others in recovery, make decisions based on how they will impact your recovery, adjust friendships and relationships based on how they affect recovery, and never let down your guard. 

 

Can you be sober and not in recovery?  Yes, abstaining is the first part.

 

A recovery mindset allows you to grow and develop your self-awareness.  It helps you question your relationships and boundaries.  Recovery is for everyone. You don't have to be an "alcoholic." Recovery is about being open to change and adjustments in your life – asking for help.

 

Many of us abstain for some time before we are ready for recovery.  The recovery mindset allows for growth, new connections, and community.

 

Are you ready to step into the arena of recovery?  We are here and ready for you.

 

[7:43]  Odette introduces Paul

 

Paul took his last drink on February 29, 2020.  He is from Long Island, NY, and lives in Brooklyn.  He is a Physical Education teacher and a personal trainer.  He trains for fun, is getting into karate, and likes getting out into nature, which isn't easy in Brooklyn.

 

Paul opened his training business during COVID. He leveraged COVID as an opportunity to pivot the world of fitness and adapt to the new normal.

 

Paul started drinking toward the end of high school.  Cannabis was his first substance, not alcohol.  When he went to college, his drinking dialed up.  In his mid 20's cannabis wasn't helping anymore, so his drinking escalated and became a problem.

 

As Paul reflects, his Dad overdosed when he was twelve, and his mother now has twelve years of sobriety.  Childhood issues contributed to his desire to numb out. His substance abuse was a symptom of early childhood trauma. 

 

[12:23] How was your childhood?  Were you trying to cope or escape from tragedy?

 

Paul said he is an extrovert.  He is open about his childhood experiences. It helps him to open up.  When Paul's mom re-married and had a baby, postpartum depression kicked in, and she shut out the world by drinking.  Paul said he was naïve and tried to take the bottle away from his mom.  He frequently cared for his brother.  His stepdad lost his temper with his mom's drinking, leading to his stepdad's arrest.  Ultimately, his mom checked into treatment and now has 12 years of sobriety.  Paul leveraged boxing as a way to escape and found solace in fitness.

 

[16:33] Did you notice that you developed a care-taking aspect of your personality?

 

Yes, Paul is a caretaker, particularly with the fitness routine and teaching elementary school. He goes out of his way to help people.

 

[18:12]  Our families can recover together.  Do you think about changing the trajectory of your ancestry?

 

Paul said a driving factor for him was seeing the lows his mom experienced when drinking, and he knew he didn't want that for himself or his kids.

 

Paul sees two sides to the coin.  Life is not easy. Addiction is not a surprise; it can harden you.  You have to find the why and the bigger picture to overcome addiction.

 

His last drink was the first confirmed case of COVID in NYC

 

[21:02]  Tell me about the progression of fitness and drinking in your life.

 

Paul went back a bit and said he experimented with other drugs in college, and they began to play a role in his life.  His mom always reminded him that addiction ran in the family.  When Paul did a semester abroad in England, his substance abuse became a problem.  He played rugby, but his drinking took over.  When he returned to the US, he started bartending, drinking, and doing cocaine.  Within six months, he lost his best friend to an overdose, then his Uncle to a drunk driver.  He didn't realize he was drinking through his grief.  He wasn't responsible.  He lost his bartending job and ran out of money.  He had to move back home.  After a fight with his mom, he went out drinking, got a DWI, and was locked up for 24 hours, which was a rock bottom for him. 

 

He turned things around and started applying to graduate programs and was accepted by a non-profit organization that paid for his Master's in Physical Education.  He moved into New York City.

 

[27:06]  Were you drinking all this time?

 

Paul said he does well with a full plate.  He was still drinking, but not nearly as much.  He took a month off after his DWI.  He had three jobs and was in a Master's program.  He was too busy for drinking to be an issue.  When he graduated from his Master's program, he decided to give personal training a shot.  He got a hernia and lost business because he couldn't train clients.  He started drinking a lot.  In 2017, he walked out of work on New Year's Eve, lost his phone, wallet, and had to call his mom to pick him up – another rock bottom moment.  He subsequently completed a teaching certification program and started teaching PE.

 

[29:58]  Did you think by adding responsibilities, you could avoid the rock bottom moments?

 

Paul said he has always been resilient – he bounces back quickly.  He made changes immediately. 

 

[30:36] What did your mom say when she picked you up?

 

Paul believes his mom knew he wasn't ready yet.  She didn't press him about recovery; she was quiet but told him he needed to figure it out.  Then he met his girlfriend.  He had three bad experiences in a row, which led him to quit drinking.  He went to a few AA meetings, started reading quit lit, and within a month, he went into Smart Recovery, and eight months later, he is on this podcast. 

 

Looking at his drinking patterns objectively made it easier for him to decide to quit.  Quitting during COVID was odd, but he is mindful of getting through cravings.

 

[38:41]  How did you establish a routine during shut down?

 

Paul said he trained to fight.  He bought a punching bag, kettlebells and he has a very structured routine including mediation, yoga, infrared sauna, cold showers, and daily routine builds his confidence. 

 

[40:10]  Did your performance improve when you quit drinking?

 

Paul realized he was leaving a lot on the table.  He ran an ultra-marathon in the summer and is aiming toward a 500-pound deadlift in Q1 2021.  He continues to study physiology and has learned a lot about what alcohol does to your entire body, from sleep deprivation, poor recovery, and stress.  He knows that drinking kept him from realizing his potential as a boxer.

 

Paul said fitness is his thing.  He doesn't romanticize drinking like artists, writers, or musicians.  Drinking hinders fitness performance. 

 

[44:48]  Do you work with people in recovery as well?

 

Paul works with all types of clients and is starting to incorporate individuals in recovery and expand that outreach.  He trains people he wants to help and loves working with kids.

 

[48:10]  What do you do when you get a craving?

 

Paul said he tries to turn it on its head and thinks of it like building a new muscle.  Café RE helps him a lot.  Family parties stressed him out because he was focused on not drinking.  He attends several Café RE meetings a week to surround himself with like-minded people and create accountability.  Quitting drinking isn't easy, but it's simple – just don't have a drink.

 

[51:52]  Rapid Fire Round

 

  1. What would you say to your younger self?

You're going to be good.  Take what life throws at you and keep moving forward

 

  1. What has recovery made possible for you?

Finding more joy and discovering what joy is for me.

 

  1. What is your favorite ice cream flavor?

Chocolate chip cookie dough

 

  1. What are you excited about right now?

My business.  Fitness will train differently post COVID, and he is excited about what's to come.

 

  1. What parting piece of guidance would you give to people who are considering ditching the booze?

Try to picture a  life without alcohol before you submit to it.  Incremental improvement goes a long way.

 

You might want to say Adios to booze if ….

 

If you have to drink a six-pack before a bartending shift or if you lose your car.

 

Learn more about Paul on Instagram: recoveryfit1

 

Odette's Summary

Recovery is an opportunity when you reframe and shift your mindset.  The way we label things has a direct impact on our experience.  Let this journey back home be full of fun, mysteries, and new discoveries.  Your life is waiting.  Remember that you are not alone and together is always better. 

 

 

 

 

Upcoming events, retreats, and courses:

  • Bozeman 2021 (August 18-22, 2021) This is our flagship annual retreat held in the pristine forests of Big Sky Country, 10 miles south of Bozeman, Montana. During this 5-day event, you'll discover how to expand the boundaries of your comfort zone.
  • 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 

 

 

"Recovery Elevator – Without the darkness you would never

know the light - I love you guys"

Mar 1, 2021

– I can’t even imagine picking up a drink to solve something anymore.  It doesn’t even cross my mind.

 

Kate took her last drink on August 11, 2018.   She is 42 and lives in New Jersey.  This is her story of living alcohol-free (AF).

 

Today’s sponsor is Better Help.

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

 

Finding Your Better You – Odette’s weekly message

 

Odette has been thinking about the process of change.  When she is having a down day, she wonders, am I doing recovery right?  Am I making progress?  Is the work worth it?  It’s muddy and contradictory, particularly with our labeling minds.  

 

We think bad days mean we are doing something wrong, and negative emotions are guides in the wrong direction.   On hard days, Odette uses more tools, which probably means she is making more progress.

 

Holly Whittaker posted on her Instagram page a sketch that highlights the Hourglass of Change.  It shows there is a range of emotions from start to goal.  Odette thinks we need to learn to appreciate the hourglass of change, label-less, and accept more.  Negative emotions have a place in our chapter of change.  When Odette looks for peace instead of euphoria and moves gently with her feelings, she remembers compassion is critical.  We need to have compassion for ourselves and others. 

 

Let us remember that we are all on the same path, wanting to connect with others and feel like we belong.  If sobriety is kicking you in the butt right now, don’t be so hard on yourself. Take it as a sign of progress.  You are on the right track.  You are right where you are supposed to be.

 

[7:30] Odette introduces Kate

 

Kate took her last drink on August 11, 2018.   She is 42, lives in New Jersey, and works for Recovery Elevator.   

 

Kate said she was born and raised in New Jersey.   She, her husband Jay, and their cats keep life interesting.  Kate works in the art world.   She is crafty and knits, sews, and cross stitches.  She loves to exercise and get outside.

 

[8:54] Give listeners some background on your history with drinking

 

Kate said she took her first drink at 14.  She was severely inebriated and blacked out.  The only other time she drank in high school, she blacked out.  Kate went to college in Pennsylvania, and drinking was part of the culture.  She was in a sorority, and everyone drank on the weekends.  Her drinking seemed normal and what everyone was doing.

 

After college, she started to notice some demons.

 

Kate recalled in early childhood being asked to sit on the choir director’s lap at church and kiss him.  She was taught to respect her elders.  Looking back, she realizes her life then took an awkward turn.  She developed an eating disorder.  When she started drinking, the eating disorder went away.  In college, she became the ultimate party girl.  She worked in galleries and auction houses, and drinking was encouraged. 

 

She moved to the UK in 2007 and was there for four years.  She contrasted the drinking culture in the UK versus New York.  Kate knew she had found her people.  Her drinking ramped up.  After her divorce, she would drink to obliteration with vodka.  She learned geographic changes don’t work.

 

[12:51] Odette asked what was going on in her brain about her drinking.

 

Kate said she knew from her first drink that she shouldn’t drink.  Alcoholism runs in her family. Her father has five years of sobriety.  Every day was a struggle to continue keeping up appearances and be a high-functioning professional while drinking copious amounts of alcohol at night. 

 

14:10 Did you talk to anyone about your eating disorder, drinking, or what happened during your childhood?

 

Kate said she was raised in a family where appearance meant everything. It went to the extreme that she and her siblings were wearing matching outfits for every holiday.  Kate believes the 3 of them were struggling with who they are.

 

Kate told her mother about the choir director, and she didn’t believe her.  Her friend’s mother found out about what was happening and sat down with Kate and talked it through.  The kissing stopped, but she had to stay in the choir and see him weekly.  At 14, the choir director turned it back on her in front of the entire chorus.  She was embarrassed as a teenager.  As an adult, she is mortified that it was allowed to happen.

 

[16:37] Tell me more about what happened when you were in the UK?

 

Kate said she moved back to the US because she was engaged to another man.  When she lived in the UK, she was sexually assaulted by someone she was dating.  This became a turning point.  Within six months, she fled back to New York and got a job at a gallery.   She then met another man who was a master manipulator, and they would drink a lot together.  During Hurricane Sandy, they were stuck together.  She tried to break up with him, and he would manipulate his way back.  Kate’s drinking escalated due to the confusion associated with the manipulation.

 

[18:21] Did you notice you were drinking more?  Was your tolerance increasing?

 

Kate said yes.  A bottle of wine an evening was a standard routine.   After a friend’s 40th birthday, she was so drunk it required two people to get her into her home.  At 5 AM the next morning, she was passed out on the floor of her apartment, fully clothed, and she had urinated on herself.  That was her first attempt to quit drinking, and it lasted about 90 days.  When she went back to drinking, it progressed to 2-3 handles of vodka a week.  She was working remotely most of the time, which masked much of her drinking.  Her company is versed in recovery, and they encourage recovery.

 

[20:29]   Did your drinking effect your relationship?  How did that change when you quit drinking?

 

Kate said her husband is a heavy drinker as well, and they fueled each other as drinking partners.  As her recovery has evolved, it has put some strain on her marriage.  Kate and Jay didn’t discuss their drinking because they both had a problem.  They are trying to rediscover who they are as a couple and learn to communicate.  Kate said her husband is a rough and tumble guy who has lived a hard life, which puts him in a gender norm that he doesn’t talk about his feelings.  Now that she is sober, Kate talks about all of her feelings.  She has sought out other friends to express her feelings, and she wishes she and her husband could speak more openly.   They have never talked about why she stopped drinking.  Jay hasn’t seen all of the new dimensions of Kate that have evolved due to her sobriety. 

 

[24:37]  Tell me a little bit more about what happened after those 90 days?

 

Kate said start, restart, try again.  She never moderated.  It was black and white; there was no in-between.  She walked into her first AA meeting at 24 years old but didn’t want to admit she had a drinking problem.  From 2017 to 2018, Kate knew if she had continued drinking, it would kill her.  She had many day one’s – she couldn’t put together stretches of time.

 

[26:40] What happened in August?

 

Kate said in July of 2018, she was sick and tired of being sick and tired.  After forty “day one’s,” she put her wine down before her friend’s baby shower and said, we’re done.  She googled recovery podcasts and found Recovery Elevator episode 2.  She clicked play and connected with Paul’s sober date.  It was the first time she heard similarities about how she drank and how other people spoke about their drinking.   In August 2018, she signed up for Café RE.  She discovered a community that was pursuing the same goal.  The encouragement from like-minded people made a difference. 

 

Kate did an Instagram live with Heather of Ditch the Drink, and it was so beautiful for Kate to see her recovery friends and her “regular” friends together.   

 

[32:01] Do you still get cravings?

 

Kate said she does not get cravings.  She likes inclusion to have an AF drink in her hand because it’s about being “part of” the event, not the alcohol in the glass.

 

[33:02] What do you do when you go to a party, and someone asks what you want to drink?

 

Kate brings her own, or she will grab a seltzer.  If she is ever asked, are you sure you don’t want just one? she offers to burn down their house. 

 

[34:10] Have you started healing, and what tools do you use?

 

Kate said she had two incredible therapists.  Her first therapist got her through her divorce,  allowing the story to unfold itself on Kate’s timetable.  She lets Kate start and stop as needed. 

 

She also had solo sessions with her couple’s therapist, who has a very different style.  He has been teaching her she is valid, worth it and her thoughts and ideas are not stupid.  Kate’s father believes she is too sensitive, which hurts deeply.   Her therapist helped her understand that being sensitive is okay.  She now understands her sensitivity is what makes her who she is.  It inspires her ability to break out into song, making up new lyrics.

 

Odette believes that Kate’s sensitivity is her superpower.

 

[38:00]  Tell me more about why recovery is important in your company?

 

Kate said the owner of the company had personal struggles with addiction, and several employees are sober.  The company cheerleads Kate’s recovery, and her boss was supportive of her work with Café RE. 

 

Odette commented about the stigma about recovery in the corporate world and how much Kate’s company gives her hope.

 

[40:58] What are you excited about right now?

 

Kate said she is excited about everything.  She is excited about finishing a cross-stitch stocking and how her company is moving forward in 2021. 

 

[42:30] Rapid Fire Round 

 

  1. If you could talk to Katie when she was younger, what would you say?

OMG, you are so f*ing pretty and worth it.  You are a beautiful person, and it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks.

 

  1. What is a lightbulb moment for you on this journey?

I can’t even imagine picking up a drink to solve something anymore.  It doesn’t even cross my mind. 

 

  1. What has recovery made possible for you?

Recovery has made everything possible.  Kate has saved $30,000 since she quit drinking and now has to buy Odette coffee.

 

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

You have to find a community.  Kate has discovered her recovery family in Café RE. It’s her #1 resource. 

 

  1. What is your favorite ice cream flavor?

Rum raisin and peanut butter ripple, but not at the same time. 

 

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

This is the best decision you will ever make in your life and stop waiting.

 

You might want to say adios to booze if …

You are so drunk at your wedding that you fall asleep at the dinner table.

 

 

Odette’s Summary

Remember that you are not alone and together is always better.  We took the elevator down. We’ve got to take the stairs back up.  We can do this.  I love you guys.

 

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 

 

 

“Recovery Elevator – Without the darkness you would never

know the light - I love you guys”

 

Feb 22, 2021

Gregg took his last drink 26 years ago (November 6th, 1994). This is his story of living alcohol free (AF).

 

Bozeman registration opens March 1st to Café RE members. On March 6th registration opens to all. You can find more details about the event here. Trust us… you don’t want to miss this!

 

Odette’s weekly installment of: Finding Your Better You

 

It’s been a little bit of time since the 1st of the year. Those resolutions we all made might now be changing from determination and drive and into a place of the unknown. If you’ve stuck with your resolution, you are far enough in that you can’t see where you started but the end isn’t in focus yet. Not knowing how the outcome will play out can be scary. When we ask “what is going to happen?” it blocks our ability to function today and in the now. Things will work out, if we let them.

 

 

[7:52] Odette introduces Gregg.

 

Gregg lives in Los Angeles. He is married and has two amazing daughters. For a living he is a recovery coach and also owns a few sober living facilities. He is an advisor in many startups as well. For fun he likes to body surf, skateboard and eats ice cream (mint chocolate chip!).

 

[12:20] Can you give listeners some background on your story?

 

Gregg’s father was killed in a drunk driving accident when he was 4 years old. From a young age he understood the power of alcohol. Being raised by a single mother he always felt different. He grew up as a bully because he was scared and sensitive. Around 12/13 he discovered pot and alcohol. That “medicine” took away his shame and pain. As an adult he started with a pattern of drinking, leading to cocaine, leading to pot, leading to bad decisions. Between 22 and 25 he was arrested 8 times. He got into the drug trade and while it provided a “nice life” there was overwhelming amounts of shame regarding his life choices, and he was eventually arrested with 50 lbs of pot. The judge gave him another chance, but he was arrested again 18 days later. In the cell the next morning he heard a voice that said, “call your mother”. She told him to go to church and while there he went to confession. Unbeknownst to Gregg, the priest he gave confession to was his step fathers first sponsor in AA. He went to AA that evening.

 

[24:39] How were those 90 meetings in 90 days for you?

 

Gregg said he was accountable because he had a court card. At first he was just looking to “get the heat off”. Around day 30 the pink cloud appeared, and he felt clear headed and healthy. He found connection with some people in AA. The boxing lessons also helped his life balance. When he got sober in 1994, there were not a lot of people in their 20s doing the same thing. He lost a lot of friendships in the process.

 

[30:47] What bigger motivations did you have to stay the course?

 

Gregg said he had a good work ethic overall. So he had the desire to succeed. He chose to put what would be been drinking time into his passion. He would write scripts rather than going out. It was 8 extra hours a week he put towards something he loved, which helped him to change the mindset around his life. He never would have had the career he had if he didn’t put that time towards his passion.

 

[36:02] How have you transformed and processed the pain you had in your early years?

 

Gregg said he had done step 4 through 4 times. Someone in a meeting saw that he was blocked and told him to unpack the “backpack of shame”. Through this process he was able to explore other things he had left off his previous step work. Gregg uncovered, discovered and discarded, which allowed him to fully open and find relief.

 

“Forgiveness is letting go of the hope that the past can change” – Oprah

 

[41:21] Do you still get any cravings?

 

Gregg said the obsessions to drink and use has left him, the obsession to obsess has not. If he doesn’t do the work on other obsessions, they will ruin his life just like drugs and alcohol did. He will go back to step 1 and apply it to whatever obsession is holding him at that time.

 

[43:00] What are you excited about right now?

Gregg said he really likes connection and he’s excited about recovery. Finding other connections through recovery. He’s excited to come out of covid and what that might look like. He’s excited about his podcast “The Recovery Playbook” Find it here on Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts.

 

 

 [48:00] Rapid Fire Round 

 

  1. What would you say to your younger self?

Drugs and alcohol are a waste of time. Time is the most precious commodity we have.

 

  1. What’s your favorite ice cream flavor?

Mint chocolate chip

 

  1. What book are you reading right now?

Epic which is about how we are all connected through our stories. Everyone has a story.

 

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

Remain willing to be willing.

 

 

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

 

because you will die. Tomorrow or 20 years from now. The disease of alcoholism is undefeated.

 

 

Odette’s weekly challenge:

 

Stay grounded in the present moment. Some of her favorite ways to stay grouned are:

 

Going for a walk

Walking barefoot on the grass

Meditation

Blasting music and dancing

Drinking tea

Touching whatever surface she’s sitting on

 

Upcoming events, retreats and courses:

  • Bozeman 2021 (August 18-22, 2021) registration opens March 1! This is our flagship annual retreat held in the pristine forests of Big Sky Country, 10 miles south of Bozeman, Montana. During this 5-day event, you’ll discover how to expand the boundaries of your comfort zone.
  • 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 – staying in the present moment is the best we can do for our future. I love you guys.”

Feb 18, 2021

 

Bonus Episode – Odette and Paul answer listeners questions

 

  1. I still find it difficult that my husband drinks every day. I don't know why it makes me feel angry inside, but I do all the time when he drinks. How can I approach this?

 

Odette said, stay on your lane. The more you focus on him, the less you will focus on your healing and your journey. In learning about yourself and healing yourself, you can start to implement boundaries and assert your needs vs. obsess over how much he is drinking. Therapy helps. Pull your energies back to yourself.

 

  1. What do you suggest I do when friends and family seem uncomfortable around me when I say I don't drink?

Paul said you can get started on 2.0 version of your life.  So much more is packed into this than just quitting drinking. You are stepping out of the norm, roles, identities, and labels in your family.  Learn to set boundaries, overcome the need to please.  Give it time, and they're watching. This doesn't mean they aren't supportive. They are on their own journey as well.

 

  1. What are the plans for Recovery Elevator (RE)? What is in the works?

 

The podcast will evolve to include additional voices.  Paul will return in some capacity.

Retreats (Rustic Retreats, like Bozeman, Hotel events, retreat centers, and AF travel).

A Retreat Center is contemplated. 

A Rat Park experiment, an in-person community, is being considered. 

(insert link)

  1. How did you best handle your early days of an alcohol-free life?  What practices do you use now daily?

Odette has used different tools but consistently exercises, sees a therapist, stays connected via on-line chats and in-person meet-ups that are COVID safe.

Paul said the most challenging and most rewarding experience in his life was quitting drinking.  Paul left Bozeman for his first month of sobriety because there were too many triggers.  He took long walks for 30 days, particularly to a fantastic waterfall. As his recovery evolved, he is mindful of the interchange.  He goes to his internal connection, and the outside triggers stopped affecting him.  He found some inner peace. 

 

  1. If you could trade your life now for being able to drink like a normal person magically, would you?

 

Odette said, no, senor!

 

In the first few years, Paul said he had thoughts of drinking, and he was in the victim role – longing for the old days when he could drink normally.  Now his energy has changed, and his life now has no space for alcohol or drinking. 

 

  1. I hear in AA all of the time that those who don't go to meetings regularly are sure to go back out and drink.

Odette said the opposite of addiction is connection. It's a great time to be sober with virtual meetings, sober curious groups, courses, and friends who are always focused on learning and being better.

Paul said there are infinite ways to Ditch the Booze. Paul's buddies have ditched the booze, and AA was not part of their journey.  He believes the community is vital to long-term sobriety. It doesn't have to be AA – and humans are social animals. 

  1. I'm in my second year of sobriety. The first year was a lot of filling my toolbox and learning how to survive without alcohol. When in your journey did you start to thrive and live your best life. What steps did you take to embrace the new you and live out loud?

 

Paul said nothing was thriving when he was drinking.  Some parts of his life started to thrive nearly immediately when he quit drinking.   Within 14 days, he felt better.  The spiritual component of his life has become vital to him.  He is more tethered and can weather emotional storms.  Today chaos, while momentary, ultimately leads to thriving for Paul.

 

Odette said her definition of thriving has changed.  She goes within.  Thriving is about peace, knowing herself, and understanding the reality of co-existing with others. It's not about the perfect Instagram profile.  Odette thrives even on her dip days.  Her growing pains lead to thriving. 

 

  1. Do you think there is a risk of a substance leading me back to alcohol? Have your own experiences (or, for that matter, any new research on the potential benefits of psychedelics)? How has your experience informed you?

 

Paul said Dr. David Nutt (2011 UK)  said alcohol is the most addictive drug and causes the most devastating effects on society.  Number 20 was magic mushrooms. Paul's experiences with plant medicines have been non-addictive.  In the right setting, they do not lead to a return to alcohol. The right setting is critical.  Guided therapy sessions will help the intense inner work. 

 

  1. What were your best strategies to avoid or minimize the tendency to romanticize the days of yore in the early days of sobriety?

Odette said, play the tape forward.  Romanticizing is just an illusion. She remembers not to give up what she wants for that drink. 

Paul described the ism and euphoric recall. Its why women continue to have babies. They don't accurately remember the pain. Paul's memory was about playing football.  The mind has 60-70K thoughts a day, and most of them are wrong.  Questioning your thoughts is a great practice. 

 

  1. I seem to have a problem sometimes with a lack of structure or regiment.  When I work or have commitments, it seems like I don't have so many thoughts in my head because I'm pretty focused on the task at hand. Fewer thoughts equal less anxiety for me.   Paul, can you share your experience with travel and structure?

 

Paul suggests structure in all of his courses.  The days with structure are easier to get through.  Paul has taken Spanish classes or city tours, or AA meetings to build in structure and routine.  Double down on the routine. 

 

  1. I would love to hear Odette speak on how alcohol abuse works with eating disorder recovery. The sobriety world is very diet culture-oriented and fat phobic. Any guidance on fighting the voice of needing to restrict, manage weight, and it's ok to eat?

 

Odette said listen to Episode 312.  There are so many connections between alcohol and eating disorders. She took other's hands until she could do it for herself.  She is grateful for her body.  She has bad body image days but tries to do the best for her body.  Protect your energy!  Odette is happy to speak to people about this challenge. 

 

 

  1. How do you not think about drinking while abstaining? I've had many alcohol-free days in the last few years, but those same days were sometimes consumed with thoughts of drinking. So, the drinking has gone away for you guys. But has the thinking about the drinking gone away from you too?

Paul talks about music is all about love.  Saying goodbye to alcohol is a Dear John letter.  Give yourself time to grieve and let the neurons no longer fire together. It's a non-issue for Paul today. 

Odette spoke about the progression of healing.  It does get better. 

 

  1. What supplements- if any- have you used to help "restore" the damage done by long-term use of alcohol?

 

Odette said sleep, vitamins, water, good food, and Vitamin D – get outside.

 

Paul said, get outside and get outside with your shoes off.  Lemon water, cocoa water, take a nap if you are tired. 

 

  1. I would like to hear from you about your spiritual journey as you got sober and how you find your higher being?

 

Paul said spirituality wasn't his thing, but at about 3.5 years in, April 14, he recognized something beautiful was at play.  He has learned to enjoy the mystery and the magic.  He doesn't have all of the answers and embraces that. 

 

Odette believes that things are presented to you when you are ready.  Stay curious, be patient.  Value bomb – time has its own time. 

 

  1. How do you distance yourself from perfectionism?

 

Paul said, recognize with an awareness that it's there.

 

Odette likes the gut check she gets when she realizes her recovering control freak is a daily practice.   She leans on friends for support. 

 

 

  1. How can I help a loved one get on the AF journey, too, without using too many of my own experiences and also without falling off myself?

 

Odette said, stay the course, don't be co-dependent. Don't add resistance.  Hold space for your loved one.

Paul said, be the change you want to see.  We grow from our crash and burn?

 

 

  1. How did the transition between hosts come about? Did Paul seek Odette out, or did Odette send out an unconscious signal? Was there a specific sign in the universe to make this incredible event happen?

 

Paul and Odette are well connected, including the transition.  The idea just came, and it worked beautifully. Odette's immediate yes came from her heart. 

 

  1. What is Paul's most significant takeaway since stepping away from hosting the podcast? And what is Odette's biggest takeaway so far being the host of the podcast?

We all suck at asking for and accepting help.  Paul needed help, and Odette stepped up. 

Odette knows we all need each other.  When she has dip days, she shows up and gets more when she shows up for others. 

 

 

  1. Do you have any advice on when is a good time and how to be open & out about your sobriety (with employers, an old friend, strangers, etc.)? I struggle with thinking it's none of my employer's business because it doesn't affect the job I do, and I don't want to deal with the conversation that comes with telling them, but then find myself avoiding the truth about it and feeling bad later.

 

Odette said self and radical honesty is what and genuine and authentic to yourself.  Challenge yourself, but do what works for yourself, your mental accountability, and your peace.

 

Paul said we often disassociate ourselves from nature.  Paul knows burning the ships can be challenging, and he's had some delicate moments.  His opportunities with vulnerability have worked with him everywhere.  It opens up the door for a deeper connection. 

 

 

  1. When has your sobriety been tested the most, and what did you do that happened?

 

Paul said he had a meltdown after his sixth episode, and he asked for help, and he was supported incredibly and learned how burning the ships worked in his favor and asking for help became an incredible experience. Vulnerability opens so many doors. 

 

Odette described that parenting is tough!  Many parents try to stay sober for their kids, and parenting can be super triggering.   Odette loves her kids to death, but she is reinventing the Mommy culture.  Parenting is tough, but she knows alcohol isn't her answer, and she has a great support system. 

 

  1. What do you think of prescription meds for or during recovery (e.g., naltrexone)?

 

Paul said green light for naltrexone.  It helps in the short term, great.  Paul said Antabuse is a violent fear motivator.  Your recovery is more helpful with loving yourself. 

 

 

  1. What have you learned the most about recovery from doing the podcasts? And what is the most common "similarity" you've found after all the interviews, other than we all have a desire to stop drinking, of course!

 

Odette said moderation works until it doesn't, and it pretty much doesn't do the trick.  We all just want love and acceptance. Odette appreciates the courage of everyone that dares to come on the show. 

 

Paul discussed, there is trauma with a big T, and little t, addiction to alcohol says something in our life is out of balance, we are all fundamentally good people,

there is part of our unconscious that doesn't want to stop drinking, and we need to overcome our fear. 

 

  1. How do I break out of the cycle of drinking with four young kids?

 

Odette said she doesn't like advising busy moms – she only has two kids.  She suggested making yourself a priority, and when you do, your children will learn that as well.  Take care of yourself.  You are not exempt from pain or failure.  It takes a village to raise children, ask for help!

 

  1. Is it possible to get addicted to feelings? I have grown up in a cycle of trauma. On a deeper level, I feel I've been addicted to feelings of sadness, loneliness, and shame, because I have lived with them for so long?

Paul said you could get addicted to your thoughts.  Your thoughts function in the known.  The body tries to anchor you back to your old self. 

Odette said, find your new normal.

Paul added, enjoy your life. It doesn't have to be hard.  You can ask for help.  Paul gave a big shout-out for all of the good questions and he and Odette had a blast. 

Feb 15, 2021

Carolyn took her last drink on February 22, 2019.  This is her story of living alcohol-free (AF).

 

 

Finding Your Better You – Odette’s weekly message.

 

Dehumanizing Others.    After listening to Brene Brown, Odette loved Brene’s challenge of not engaging in dehumanizing others.  We can’t change the world if we continue dehumanizing others.  Odette was also reading Pema Chodron’s new book and concluded that polarization is most problematic when we dehumanize people.  Habitually dehumanizing others about politics or behavior or clothing isn’t good.  Minor differences in habits and preferences keep us fundamentally separate from others.  

 

 

The division exists everywhere, even in recovery.  Odette has observed others judging other’s approaches to recovery.  We judge people for NA beer or not drinking NA beer,  AA or no AA.  We continue to create division instead of closing the gaps.    Pema Chodron has a practice called “just like me.” Just like me, this person doesn’t want to be uncomfortable.  Just like me, this person loses it sometimes.  Just like me, this person wants friends and intimacy. 

 

Focus on the similarities, not the differences.  You can have boundaries without dehumanizing others. 

 

 

[7:35] Odette introduces Carolyn

 

Carolyn took her last drink on February 22, 2019.  She lives in Wisconsin and is 34 years old. 

 

She lives in Wisconsin, is single, no kids, and has fun with her German shepherd pup.  Carolyn loves drawing, painting, murals, golf, snowboarding, camping, hiking, etc.  She works as a graphic artist. Living in the polar vortex of Wisconsin can be challenging, but it makes her appreciate the seasons more.

 

[11:01] Tell me about your history with drinking

 

Carolyn started drinking when she was 14 years old (2000).  She would drink on the weekends and look forward to drinking. It was a big part of her identity and made her feel cool and accepted. 

 

Carolyn’s drinking ramped up when she went to college.  She worked in a restaurant and played rugby and had lots of opportunities to drink.  Drinking continued to be a significant part of her identity.  

 

She met her significant other in 2008, and they were drinking buddies, a party couple.  She knew something was off but wasn’t sure what it was.

 

 

[13:30] Did you start questioning if alcohol was a problem at that time?

 

Carolyn didn’t see alcohol as a problem initially, but she was aware that several areas of her life were not jiving.  Looking back, she can see many events and relationships influenced by alcohol, but she didn’t see it at the moment. 

 

[14:49] Were you rationalizing your drinking as something sophisticated?

 

At her college graduation, she was surrounded by friends and family.  She was drunk, and her boyfriend proposed.  She said yes, even though she knew something was off.  She has a lot of internal conflicts.  She leveraged alcohol to help her numb her feelings.  The marriage ended because she couldn’t move the relationship forward.

 

After her divorce, she was drinking after work every night.  She found it wasn’t fun anymore.  She started to develop anxiety at 22.  Her drinking was no longer fun, party drinking – it was maintenance drinking.  Had she not had the lull in 2014, she would not have had the tipping point

 

[18:32] Did you talk to a friend or a therapist about your struggles?

 

Carolyn knew her drinking wasn’t healthy, but she was still in denial.  She brainwashed herself into believing she was a fun party-girl.  She didn’t see herself as an alcoholic.  She began to realize she had a problem after her divorce. 

 

[20:21] Walk me through what happened from 2014 to February 2019.

 

Carolyn said her drinking progressed.  Her anxiety was crippling, and she would drink when she got home.  After a visit with his sister, her brother-in-law mentioned he hadn’t had a drink for two weeks.  She thought that was crazy.  She knew she hadn’t gone two weeks without drinking ever.  She stumbled upon the “are you an alcoholic” quiz.

 

She had a few three-week breaks over the years, and she could feel the fog lift; her anxiety would lessen.  She returned to drinking because she couldn’t handle her social life without alcohol.

 

In 2018, she had to be on medication for a month.  She was advised not to drink while on the drug but drank anyway.  It was a terrifying realization for her.  She knew at then she had to take her drinking seriously. 

 

[25:19] Sometimes, our “best” looks different. It sounds like you had a real mental shift.

 

Carolyn said it wasn’t until she got scared that she decided to take it seriously.  She is now thankful for the hardships that led to her tipping point. 

 

She listened to the Recovery Elevator podcast and heard about Annie Grace’s book, This Naked Mind.  She quit drinking the next day.  She reads a lot of self-help and memoirs and credits Annie’s book with changing her life. 

 

[28:36] How were your first few weeks alcohol-free?

 

Carolyn said she was anxious and sweaty during week one.  She didn’t sleep well for three weeks and was emotionally sensitive.  She would burst into tears at any given moment.  She listened to podcasts, checked her sobriety tracker, and didn’t have many cravings.  She did chain smoke.   By week four, she turned a corner and felt things became more manageable.  She was sleeping better, not obsessed with how many days she had.  She was still emotional, but her energy was through the roof, and things started coming together. 

 

[32:05] Carolyn asks Odette about her social circle. 

 

Odette joined Café RE.  She experienced lots of change, and she was grieving her former self. 

 

Carolyn’s sister quit drinking three years ago.  Her oldest sister has been her confidante and best friend through learning to be alcohol-free.  Her sister’s sobriety became a motivator.  She and her twin sister were drinking buddies.  She believes her twin sister is coming to terms with drinking as well.  She is learning to be transparent with her sister about her addiction.

 

[38:05] Tell me about your maintenance routine?

 

Carolyn said that fitness and nutrition have always been important to her.  Now her fitness and nutrition are more therapeutic because she has no alcohol.  She is nurturing her body; she feels better, keeps a gratitude journal, podcasts and talks to her older sister, and quit lit help. 

 

[39:54] What do you do when you get a trigger, or a curveball comes your way?

 

Carolyn said exercise, getting outside, art projects like painting or drawing are freeing.  She also dances and sings to shake it off.  One podcast, Rachel Heart, focused on how your brain functions in phases of a craving (Think, Feel, Act) has been an excellent tool to overcome cravings.  She quit smoking after six months AF, and her cravings were heightened at that time. 

 

[45:32] Rapid Fire Round 

 

 

  1. What would you say to your Day 1 self?

Once you reach the 3–4-week milestone, things will get a lot easier.

 

  1. What is a lightbulb moment for you in this journey?

Carolyn had a tipping point and realized she could have an awesome life without alcohol. She no longer felt deprived.

 

  1. What has recovery made possible for you?

Carolyn said lots of doors have opened for her.  She started a screen-printing apprenticeship.  She is shopping for a home.  Her self-confidence is much better.

 

  1. What is your favorite ice cream flavor?

Mint chip.

 

You may have to say Adios to booze if …

 

If you continue drinking while you are on antibiotics. 

 

 

Odette’s weekly challenge:

 

Try the “just like me” practice this week with someone.  When you feel judgment appear, pause, and try and lessen the gap between you.  Remember, you are not alone, and together is always better.  Let’s be kinder to each other and ourselves. 

 

Upcoming events, retreats, and courses:

  • Bozeman 2021 (August 18-22, 2021) registration opens March 1! This is our flagship annual retreat held in the pristine forests of Big Sky Country, 10 miles south of Bozeman, Montana. During this 5-day event, you’ll discover how to expand the boundaries of your comfort zone.
  • 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 

 

 

“Recovery Elevator – Without the darkness, you would never

know the light - I love you guys.”

Feb 8, 2021

Holly took her last drink on January 4, 2007.  This is her story of living alcohol-free (AF).

 

 

Finding Your Better You – Odette’s weekly message.

 

Odette and Holly met in treatment.  In 2013, they went to Montecatini together to work on their eating disorders.  Odette believed that if she could stop her obsession with food and reach a healthy weight, she would be normal.  However, she didn’t address the emotional reasons behind her eating disorder.  A few years later, she found herself using alcohol as her new coping mechanism.  The behaviors that led to her unhealthy relationship with food mirrored the behaviors of her relationship with alcohol. 

 

Up to 35% of people who abused alcohol also have an eating disorder. This rate is 11 times greater than the general population. 

 

For more information on these statistics, see:  https://www.nationaleatingdisorders.org/

 

 

The stigma for eating disorders is greater than the stigma for alcohol use disorder, so many people struggle in silence. 

 

Odette believes the only way out is through. 

 

Get to the root cause of your addiction.  Be aware of co-occurring addictions.  Don’t run away from your feelings or numb them with a substance.  Find a community.  Get professional help.  When seeking help, be specific.  Find a therapist specializing in addiction, whether it is alcohol, food, drugs, or whatever else.  Get specific.

 

 

Don’t feel perpetually stuck in addiction whack-a-mole.  We can do hard things.

 

 

[9:14] Odette introduces Holly

 

Holly took her last drink on January 4, 2007.  Holly is from Montana.  She moved to Southern California over 15 years ago for graduate school.  She currently works for Mental Health Systems as an employment specialist, helping those with behavioral health issues get employment.  On the weekends, she works for a rehab in San Diego as a rehab specialist.  Holly has fun playing games.  Codeword is her latest favorite.  She also enjoys listening to books, music and hanging out with her dog Hannay.

 

[11:56] Tell me about your history with drinking

 

Holly started experimenting with alcohol in college.  She grew up in a conservative home.  She was allowed to drink with adults present, but her family was traditional with alcohol use.  Holly didn’t drink in high school.  She was a rule follower.

 

Her drinking took off when she was 21, when it was legal and escalated after her engagement.  She attended Fuller Theological Seminary, intending to become a Presbyterian minister. She drank heavily every day and hid her drinking. 

 

[13:39] Did you start questioning your drinking habits at that time?

 

When Holly lived in Montana, she drank like everyone else.  When she moved to California, she would order two drinks at a time and was starting to understand that wasn’t normal.  She needed a drink before she went out and then went home afterward to drink alone.  She isolated and that isolation led to depression.  Alcohol exacerbated the depression.  Toward the end of her drinking, she was put on several psychiatric holds (5150).

 

[15:17] Were you rationalizing your drinking as something sophisticated?

 

On paper, Holly was very functional.  She was a straight-A student, on the Dean’s list, she held to part-time jobs.  She aced Hebrew.

 

[16:40] Did you have a therapist?  Was your therapist able to discern the alcohol issues from the depression issues?

 

Holly had a therapist and kept drinking.  She hid her drinking from her therapist.  She was annoyed that her therapist occasionally suggested her attending a meeting.

 

[17:33] Walk me through the progression of your drinking.

 

Holly noted that two years after moving to California, she couldn’t stop drinking.  She would wake up in the morning and drink to recover from the night before.  She also struggled with an Eating disorder.  Alcohol was the only calories she could keep in her body.  She was physically and mentally depleting.

 

She had suicidal ideations and felt if she got rid of herself, she would solve the problems she caused others.  She had several suicide attempts due to alcohol, poor nutrition, and depression. 

 

[18:58] How long did that cycle last?

 

Holly’s drinking continued for two years.  On January 3, her therapist said she didn’t sound right and told her to go immediately to the hospital.  Holly knew she couldn’t drive, so she walked toward the hospital.  She consumed a pint of Vodka, a handful of Xanax and was mugged on the way to the hospital.

 

She went missing for several hours.  The Pasadena police called her Mom in Montana asking, are you Mom?  They told her Mom they couldn’t find Holly.  When Holly came to, she walked back to her apartment that has search dogs and an ambulance.   She was placed on a 72-hour psych hold, which became a 14-day hold.  She was released early because her Dad came down from Montana to take her to rehab.

 

[21:02] How many holds did you have?

 

Holly said, five or six, and she was still in denial.  She was in rehab for 97 days, and it took her until Day 45 to acknowledge she had a bit of a drinking problem.  She admitted to depression and an eating disorder, but not alcohol. 

 

[22:07] What was it about alcohol that made it difficult for you to admit you had a problem?

 

Holly said that alcohol was such a part of her lifestyle that it seemed normal.  Her view of an alcoholic was a homeless person on the street with a bottle in a brown bag.  She had extreme denial that it was a problem.

 

[23:08] Tell me more about when you went to rehab?

 

Holly attended rehab in San Clemente, CA.  It was a 12 Step based program.  She was scared.  Forty-five days into rehab, she begrudgingly got a sponsor.  She was asked, “are you willing to do whatever it takes?”  That temporary sponsor was with her for 7.5 years.  Holly is grateful to her sponsor, her family, and all of the rehab staff who had to put up with her attitude.

 

On family weekend, her Dad was crying when he told Holly what he saw when he came to put her in rehab.  There were alcohol bottles and diet pills strewn about her apartment.  Nobody knew how bad she was because she only reported the good news, from her grades to her two jobs.  Seeing the pain in her father’s eyes snapped her into awareness. 

 

[27:08] Did you realize your body was withdrawing from alcohol?

 

Holly said she had no recall of the first several days because she had overdosed.  She later learned that her blood alcohol level was toxically high.  The doctors said it was amazing she pulled through.  Holly believes from her faith that angels were watching over her, and that is why she is still with us.

 

[28:19] What happened after you left rehab.  How was it adjusting to the real world?

 

Holly said she did a lot of work but knew she had to take one day at a time.  In early recovery, she leveraged AA, her sponsor, and plenty of therapy.  Holly said connections, connections, connections – that was her saving grace.  She began to lean in on other sobriety tools like the Recovery Elevator podcast.  She returned to grad school and added recovery ministry to her curriculum.  Her heart changed, and there was an ego shift that allowed her to focus on recovery ministry, sharing her recovery tools with others who struggle with addiction.  She still takes it one day at a time, and her recovery isn’t perfect.  Now she can hold space for others.

 

[31:12] Did your eating disorder progress after you stopped drinking?

 

Holly said she exchanged one obsession for another.   Her addictive brain focused on alcohol, then alcohol plus food, trauma.  Her recovery has not been a straight line but rather a windy pathway.

She realized variety, moderation and balance are essential in her life, but moderation is not an option with alcohol.  She has infinite possibilities without alcohol. 

 

[34:33] How do you handle difficult emotions now?

 

Holly said she has to reach out to talk to people, or she is in trouble.  If she starts to isolate from family and friends, it’s a red flag. 

 

[37:00] Tell me how you transitioned into the recovery industry?

 

Holly said after graduating, she felt a pull to help others.  She began helping people in recovery homes and believes her past was a calling for her to hold space for others. 

 

She practices playing the tape through regularly to avoid the insanity of her thoughts.  She knows she is not going to drink, just for today.  She believes in affirmations to rewire her neuropathways. 

 

[45:38] How has your recovery evolved over time?

 

Holly remains involved in her 12-step program, but her mind has shifted from, I have to, to I get to.  She continues to work with a therapist and connects with other people in recovery. 

 

[49:17] Rapid Fire Round 

 

 

  1. What would you say to your younger self?

Stay in the present, don’t worry about the past. You are loved.   

 

  1. What is a lightbulb moment for you in this journey?

Everyone has a past, don’t cast judgment. It’s about what you are doing today.

 

  1. What do you bring to a party?

Diet Coke or Coke Zero with a splash of lemonade. 

 

  1. What are your favorite resources in recovery?

Connection, 12-steps, mental health support groups, quit lit, friends, and family.

 

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

Be gentle with yourself and know there are people who want to support you.  No matter what, you have worth, value and you are loved. 

 

 

You may have to say Adios to booze if …

 

You finish your whiskey, and you yell at the bartender, “same ice” because you don’t want the marinated ice to go down the drain.

 

 

Odette’s weekly challenge:

 

This journey should make you feel lighter and propel you toward the life you deserve.  Let this be the best experiment in your life, the path back to yourself. Challenges are lessons, not obstacles.  We can fail forward into beautiful things.  You are not alone, together is always better. 

 

 

Upcoming events, retreats, and courses:

  • Bozeman 2021 (August 18-22, 2021) registration opens March 1! This is our flagship annual retreat held in the pristine forests of Big Sky Country, 10 miles south of Bozeman, Montana. During this 5-day event, you’ll discover how to expand the boundaries of your comfort zone.
  • 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 

 

 

“Recovery Elevator – Without the darkness you would never

know the light - I love you guys”

Feb 1, 2021

Emmy took her last drink on December 8, 2019.  This is her story of living alcohol free (AF).

 

 

Finding Your Better You – Odette’s weekly message.

 

Odette spoke about a personal and very sensitive issue: she is an Adult Child of an Alcoholic.  She took charge of her recovery but recently identified some behaviors and coping mechanisms she was hoping to skip over that are rooted in her early years growing up in an alcoholic home.  Odette realized she had been stuck in a pattern of self-sabotage for years in many aspects of her life, some more dangerous than others.   Self-sabotage showed up in her relationships with friends, at school, and with her husband.  While Odette doesn’t like the label of being an adult child of an alcoholic, she has come to realize she can’t wish the consequences away.  Pain in our families makes our emotional state a bit disheveled.  We live waiting for the other shoe to drop.  We were guarded and untrusting.  This state became our normal:  the feeling that something is wrong all of the time. 

 

Odette is focused on understanding the impact self-sabotage has on her behavior.  She is practicing new behaviors.  She is working on making small shifts – to see things differently. 

 

No matter how destructive our behavior has been in the past, we can experience new ways of being. 

 

 

[9:38] Odette introduces Emmy

 

Emmy took her last drink on December 8, 2019.  She is from Fort Worth, Texas, and she is 30 years old.

 

Emmy is a recreational therapist who works with children and adults with various disabilities.  She is single, no kids, and lives with her five-year-old dog Petey.  She has fun participating in her recovery, getting to know who she is, and learning to become her own friend.

 

 

[13:06] Can you give listeners some background on your history with drinking?

 

Emmy said she started drinking around 16 or 17. She was at a friend’s house where somebody had brought over a bottle of alcohol mixed with Propel and thought it was cool.  She remembers the first sip giving her this sort of warm feeling inside and thinking, ‘nothing bad can ever happen with this.’ She kept that routine going every weekend as a teenager.  When she went to college, she found an excuse to drink every night, whether trivia night or intramural sports. She also worked in a restaurant and could drink behind the bar. Everybody was doing it, so it didn’t seem like a problem at the time. 

 

She graduated college and worked in a nursing home by day and a restaurant by night.  She was working 50-60 hours a week, which gave her another excuse to drink because she worked so hard. 

 

[14:45] At this point, were you starting to question your relationship with alcohol, or were you thinking this is just what people do? 

 

Emmy said she knew as a teenager; it may become a problem in the future.  She saw so many people doing the same thing and thought she would have to look at it later down the road. 

 

[15:28] Walk me through what happened afterward, how did that progress?

 

Emmy went to grad school, which started drinking Round 2.  She thought, I’m still in school, I can still live the same lifestyle.  She graduated, got a Director job in a nursing home, with more responsibility.  She was not surrounded by as many people who drank as she did.

 

She began putting feelers out to different people, asking if she had a drinking problem.  She was asking the wrong people, the people who drank as she did.  She took that as validation she didn’t have a problem.

 

She drank regularly for a few more years.  She thought it was fun.  There were many examples of alcoholism in her family.  Problem drinkers have a problem every time.  She believed she could maintain control and continue drinking. 

 

[17:35] Were you creating any rules for yourself, like moderation rules?

 

Emmy said, don’t we all?  She had rules about, don’t drink on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.  She would break her rules all of the time, then double down on guilt and shame. 

 

Emmy moved to Texas, and she wasn’t around anybody she knew anymore.  She started drinking alone.  She could still have a glass or two of wine and feel fine the next day.  She was still getting up for work and had a really good job.  Nothing was taken away from her, so she didn’t think it was a problem. 

 

[18:36] You said the word, YET, was powerful in your journey.  The inner turmoil between the heart and the brain can be exhausting, were you tired mentally?

 

Emmy said this is what led her to admit defeat.  She found herself doing the same thing over and over again.  She was sick and tired of being sick and tired.  She was sick of being pulled out of her life, missing amazing moments while she continued drinking.

 

[19:49] Did you have any people in your life who were pursuing sobriety or battling addiction?

 

Emmy said yes.  She grew up with alcoholism in her immediate and extended family.  She had little seeds planted in the past ten years by people who chose recovery. 

 

[20:32] So what made you change your mind?

 

Emmy said on December 7, she was feeling unsafe and recalling a previously abusive relationship. On vacation in California, she was sneaking drinks when nobody was looking so not everyone would know how much she’d had to drink.  She treated somebody pretty poorly that night.  She was up all night and came out of a blackout, realizing she was yelling at someone.  She looked in the mirror and told herself, you have completely lost who you are.  It was an out-of-body experience, and within a few days, she reached out for help out of desperation.

 

[22:18] That’s a powerful moment: a self-intervention.  Was the progression of your drinking a way to cope with the pain of an abusive relationship?

 

Emmy said, absolutely, but she doesn’t think of herself as a victim anymore.  She feels empowered from the healing and counseling she has done and discovered the abusive relationship was an excuse. Self-pity became an excuse for her behaviors.

 

[24:48] You decided to reach out for help. What did that look like for you?

 

Emmy said, leading up to this day, she was drawn to a client’s mother with 30 years of sobriety.  She drove her client home and walked up to the door, and just collapsed in her arms, sobbing.  She was met with acceptance, told about some options, and felt safe.  

 

She went to an AA meeting at 10 pm that night, and it was a magical moment.  She felt love, acceptance, no judgment, empowerment, and she has been going to AA ever since.  

 

[28:05] How connected are you to faith or guidance?  It sounds like you were catching signs.

 

Emmy said she grew up in a religious home and always had God there.  She believes not making him her #1 pursuit got her off track.  She recently connected to the spiritual side of her program and believes God sends messages through people.  Her faith has grown in the past nine months.

 

[32:19] Tell me about those initial months. What was it like? How did you have to adjust your daily routine?

 

Emmy said the first three months were just a release of emotion.  She had no cravings. She was grateful to God for lifting the obsession.  She was learning how to be a human, to walk soberly.  She still had problems and started learning how to deal with them without alcohol.

 

She is getting to know God, getting to know herself.  She is establishing a routine and creating stability that she never got as a little girl and felt empowered by the choice.

 

[34:42] What is your go for handling problems and negative emotions?

 

Emmy is trying to strengthen the pause, pausing before reacting.  She takes 5 minutes to herself and breathes.  She is working on not being impulsive.  She continues to practice pausing every day.

 

[36:27] Tell me about your routine?

 

Emmy is awakened by her dog at the same time every day.  They have a routine.  She then does a daily devotional, journals, relaxes as her form of meditation to clear her head.  She walks the dog to get outside and enjoys fresh air.  Then she starts work.  God and her recovery come first.

 

[38:51] What is your favorite part of the journey so far?

 

Emmy does five in-person meetings a week and talks to her sponsor when problems arise.

 

[39:56] What is your response when someone offers you a drink?

 

Emmy said it varies, and she liked to make it funny. I’m allergic.  It makes me mean.  No, thank you. 

 

[40:37] Thoughts about the future (wedding, milestones)?

 

Emmy said she has thought about it. Will anyone come if I have a dry wedding?  She is learning it’s easy to have fun without alcohol. She is learning to “stay where her feet are.”  She stays in the present and is enjoying being in the present.  Stay where your feet are; you are here. 

 

[42:35] How have the relationships in your life shifted or changed?

 

Emmy said she feels blessed with good friends and believes she is the one that has changed.  She practices being grateful for her friends, being present for them, and enjoys remembering conversations the next day.  She treats people better. She feels supported and has excellent long-distance relationships. 

 

[44:15] Where do you find inspiration from outside of your meetings?

 

Emmy said she loves the Recovery Elevator podcast, talking to her sponsor, prayer, and journaling. 

 

[45:15} What do you associate with the word alcoholic?

 

Emmy said she doesn’t have a problem with it.  She sees it as an opportunity, a relief, not a label.

 

 

[46:03] Rapid Fire Round 

 

 

  1. What are you excited about right now? What possibilities in your life?

Helping others in recovery, giving opportunity to other people. 

 

  1. What do you bring to a party when they tell you to bring your drinks?

La Croix – passion fruit

 

  1. What’s your favorite ice cream flavor?

Breyer’s chocolate truffle

 

  1. What’s a light bulb moment you’ve had in this journey?

If you don’t drink, you won’t get drunk

 

  1. What has recovery made possible for you?

Self-love

 

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

Keep open-mindedness and willingness.  Don’t be too hard on yourself.  If the thought has crossed your mind, give it a try.

 

 

You may have to say Adios to booze if …

 

getting a drink (one drink) sounds like a waste of time

 

 

Odette’s weekly challenge:

 

What is in your baggage backpack that you want to get eliminate?  A character defect, a challenging conversation, a task you have been avoiding. Muster the courage and go for it. You are brave and so much more capable than you realize. 

 

If you are an Adult Child of an Alcoholic, I am with you. You are not alone and together is always better.

 

 

Upcoming events, retreats, and courses:

  • Bozeman 2021 (August 18-22, 2021) registration opens March 1st! This is our flagship annual retreat held in the pristine forests of Big Sky Country, 10 miles south of Bozeman, Montana. During this 5-day event, you’ll discover how to expand the boundaries of your comfort zone.
  • 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 

 

 

“Recovery Elevator – Without the darkness you would never

know the light - I love you guys”

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”

Dec 28, 2020

Robyn took her last drink on June 30, 2020. With 63 days away from alcohol (at the time of this recording), this is her story of living alcohol free (AF).

 

Recovery Elevator RESTORE January 2021 Course. We will be offering this starting 1/1/2021. We’re meeting 13 times in January via Zoom to give you the tools and accountability needed for an alcohol-free January… and hopefully more!

We’ll be focusing more on creating a life where alcohol is no longer needed. We’ve found that when we have healthy altruistic relationships with fellow human beings, the need for alcohol or any external substance drastically reduces. For more information and to sign up, use this link.

 

Odette’s weekly installment of: Finding Your Better You

 

The last Monday of the year! “What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals” – Zig Ziglar

This journey isn’t about arriving, it’s about becoming. How much we are willing to put in is what we should celebrate. Your hard work and new habits are what is to be celebrated. No one can take that away from you. What have you noticed about your journey this year? Who did you become this year?

 

 

[6:35] Odette introduces Robyn.

 

Robyn is from Columbia, South Carolina. She lives with her partner and he has two kids they see often. She likes jigsaw puzzles, reading, journaling and meditating. Pre-covid she liked vacations to the mountains.

 

 

[9:33] Can you give listeners some background on your story?

 

Robyn said she started drinking around her senior year of high school. She was shy. When she moved to NC it was a fresh start and to fit in, she drank. It helped her open up and have fun. After some life trials and moving to Columbia she made friends with bartenders and it was still fun drinking. During a relationship with another alcoholic, she noticed her drinking really ramped up. There were lots of times she talked herself out of being an alcoholic. In 2011 Robyn got a DUI. She did quit for a little, but it didn’t stick. After her mother passed away was when Robyn actually noticed it was a problem. She dealt with so much during that time. Robyn’s getting to her last drink came in ebbs and flows over years. There was a definite mental decline that she noticed.

 

 

[26:10] How was your emotional state during these times of drinking and then returning to drinking?

 

Robyn said she stopped beating herself up. It took a while for that overall to stop, but the more she met people and gained community it’s been easier for her to be easier on herself. She’s learned there’s no point in beating yourself up, it won’t help.

 

 

[31:06] What do you do when you get a craving?

 

Robyn said she reaches out. Her partner helps her with the rational side of her thinking. If he’s not available, she will reach out to Café RE or her little DTB group.

 

 

[32:43] How has this decision affected other relationships?

 

Robyn said her boss is also in recovery and he’s a big supporter of her recovery. Her best friend still drinks but is supportive of her choice.

 

 

[35:21] Have you been able to identify any triggers?

 

Robyn said some of her triggers are good things. If she’s having a good day, yard work, outside activities. Her triggers aren’t emotional anymore.

 

 

[38:06] Do you have a daily routine?

 

Robyn said journaling. She’s journaled most of her life and she’s really focused on it during her sobriety. Robyn even noticed that if she takes a break, within a week she’s had a drink. Even when she doesn’t have anything “great” to say, she writes anyway. She tries to include gratitude and she’s begun meditating.

 

 

 [47:18] Rapid Fire Round 

 

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

Keep trying, you’re making the right decision, keep going. It will eventually be good.

 

  1. What are you excited about right now?

Do some sober travel and meet some Cafe RE members.

 

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

Cafe RE, journaling, quit lit and other podcasts, all of them.

 

  1. What is your favorite NA beverage?

All the sparkling water, if it’s sparkling and it’s water, I want it!

 

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

Give it a try you will never know how good it can feel until you give it a chance. And be easy on yourself.

 

 

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

 

you wanted to stock up for quarantine and it only lasts you 4 days.

 

Odette’s weekly challenge:

 

Take a few moments to reflect on today’s intro on becoming. Who are you trying to become?

Thank you to each listener!

 

Upcoming events, retreats and courses:

  • Recovery Elevator RESTORE January 2021 Course. We will be offering this starting 1/1/2021. We’re meeting 13 times in January via Zoom to give you the tools and accountability needed for an alcohol-free January… and hopefully more!
  • 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 – Embrace the journey of becoming and Happy New Year- I love you guys”

Dec 21, 2020

Sarah took her last drink on April 22, 2019. With over a year away from alcohol (at the time of this recording), this is her story of living alcohol free (AF).

 

Recovery Elevator RESTORE January 2021 Course. We will be offering this starting 1/1/2021. We’re meeting 13 times in January via Zoom to give you the tools and accountability needed for an alcohol-free January… and hopefully more!

We’ll be focusing more on creating a life where alcohol is no longer needed. We’ve found that when we have healthy altruistic relationships with fellow human beings, the need for alcohol or any external substance drastically reduces. For more information and to sign up, use this link.

 

Odette’s weekly installment of: Finding Your Better You

 

Odette recently received the book Homebody by Rupi Kaur. As Odette looks at her own sobriety as a return to self, this book is very fitting for where she is in her own journey right now. Here’s your permission slip this week: take care of yourself. This time of year can be overwhelming for many. When we are overwhelmed, we may also open the door to fear. Using our tools, we can make life manageable and hold space for everything we are feeling.

 

list of things to heal your mood:

  • cry it out. walk it. write it. scream it. dance it out of your body.
  • If after all that
    you are still
    spiraling out of control
    ask yourself if sinking into the mud is worth it
  • the answer is no
  • the answer is breathe
  • sip tea and feel your nervous system settle
  • you are the hero of your life
  • this feeling doesn’t have power over you
  • the universe has prepared you to handle this
  • no matter how dark it get
    the light is always on its way
  • you are the light
  • walk yourself back to where the love lives

 

 

[6:42] Odette introduces Sarah.

 

Sarah lives in Wisconsin with her husband and her son and their dog. She is 30 years old and works in marketing. For fun she likes running, reading and crafting. She loves live music as well.

 

 

[8:52] Can you give listeners some background on your story?

 

Sarah said she had her first drink around 14 or 15 years old. Form there she drank almost every weekend and became a party girl. The lifestyle continued into college. She transferred her sophomore year and focused on her health. When she turned 21 it ramped up again. Being in WI the drinking culture is strong. After college she kept partying on the weekend, but the culture of drinking kept her in it. At the age of 26 Sarah had a moment that changed it, she woke up feeling shame. In 2017 she told herself she was only going to drink on special occasions, she made it 60 days without alcohol. At a friends 30th birthday was when she drank again, and it was like old times, up until 4 am drinking. She also found out she was pregnant at the end of March 2017. While pregnant she missed drinking and was ready to get back to it. She found herself turning to alcohol as a reward. Sarah began to see that she wasn’t someone who could just have one, she always went overboard.

 

 

[21:30] Has it been cool finding different ways to unwind at the end of the day?

 

Sarah said she turned her beer fridge into a NA fridge. Her and her husband make mocktails. She turns to something that’s relaxing rather than alcohol to unwind.

 

 

[22:59] Talk to me about when you started this journey and being in a relationship?

 

Sarah said her partner was really supportive. He never said anything about her drinking, but it caused problems when she was drinking. She was worried about their relationship however because they met through partying. He however is someone who supports her no matter what.

 

[27:31] Did you start using social media as a way to find other sober people?

 

Sarah said when she was on her moderation journey, she found some accounts that were about being sober. When she got serious, she went back and found them and was amazed at how large the community had grown. Sarah found 1000 Hours Dry and enlisted a friend to do it with her. Sarah helped grow her community through Instagram. She’s co-started New Fashioned Sobriety with some friends she met through Instagram and they plan meet ups (virtual right now!).

 

 

[33:39] How was it going to the in person retreat in Bozeman?

 

Sarah said she was very nervous about going, but also about what her family would think. During the retreat she met and connected with so many people she wouldn’t have otherwise and really emersed herself in the event. Sarah said she came home with new tools and tons of new friends.

 

 

[37:52] Do you still get cravings?

 

Sarah said it’s mostly when she romanticizes her drinking, but for the most part no.

 

 

[41:28] Tell me what your most beloved tools in your toolbelt.

 

Podcasts are #1, this Naked Mind and the community on instgram.

 

 

[42:31] What’s your go to response when someone offers you a drink?

 

No thanks, it makes me feel like shit was her go to in the beginning. Now she normally brings her own so it’s not a conversation!

 

 

 [43:33] Rapid Fire Round 

 

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

 

You life is going to change so much in so many positive ways, you will still be you, you just will have a fuller life.

 

  1. What is your favorite ice cream flavor?

 

Blue Moon

 

  1. What book are you reading?

 

The Sober Lush

 

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

 

Stop thinking about all the thinking you will lose, but instead focus on the possibilities.

 

 

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

 

you black out on Easter Sunday before American Idol premiers at 7pm.

 

Odette’s parting words:

 

Love yourself hard this week. We don’t have to drink to escape our feelings. If you need any extra help, please ask for help. You can email Odette.

Together is always better.

 

Upcoming events, retreats and courses:

  • Recovery Elevator RESTORE January 2021 Course. We will be offering this starting 1/1/2021. We’re meeting 13 times in January via Zoom to give you the tools and accountability needed for an alcohol-free January… and hopefully more!
  • 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 – Feliz Navidad- I love you guys”

Dec 14, 2020

Kyle took his last drink on May 31 2020. With 82 days away from alcohol (at the time of this recording), this is his story of living alcohol free (AF).

 

Recovery Elevator RESTORE January 2021 Course. We will be offering this starting 1/1/2021. We’re meeting 13 times in January via Zoom to give you the tools and accountability needed for an alcohol-free January… and hopefully more! 

We’ll be focusing more on creating a life where alcohol is no longer needed. We’ve found that when we have healthy altruistic relationships with fellow human beings, the need for alcohol or any external substance drastically reduces. For more information and to sign up, use this link.

 

Odette’s weekly installment of: Finding Your Better You

 

Sometimes we get stuck. When Odette gets stuck, she repeats this simple phrase to herself. “Please help me see things differently.” Being shown the same scenario through a different lens helps to shift the perspective. Different questions help to see things in a new way and get unstuck. If you’re feeling stuck are you asking yourself the wrong questions?

 

 

[7:44] Odette introduces Kyle.

 

Kyle is 33 years old and from Michigan. He is married and has three young daughters. He works in the automotive industry as a program manager. For fun he’s been planning the future with his wife, he also likes gaming and running.

 

 

[10:49] Can you give listeners some background on your story?

 

Kyle said the first time he got drunk was when he was 14, but he didn’t notice a change in his drinking until he was in his 20s. He was taking on a lot at the time and failing a lot at things. He looked to beer to take the edge off which turned into drinking to black out every night. He tried quitting many times and this stretch is the longest he’s gone in 10 years.

 

 

[13:37] When did you notice you were using alcohol to cope?

 

Kyle said he realized this subconsciously early on but was trying to quit on willpower alone. He figured out the price for alcohol and the euphoria it brought was higher than he was willing to pay. Alcohol stopped being enjoyable at the end because he was just chasing something.

 

 

[17:25] What happened when you returned from Japan and you realized you couldn’t shake it?

 

Kyle said rock bottom wasn’t one individual thing. He realized he was letting his wife and kids down often. He would wake up ashamed. During a conversation with his wife, she mentioned a friend who worked with people with addiction issues. Kyle was given some reference material. He found other like-minded people and that’s really what helped him.

 

 

[21:23] Tell me about your attempts to stop drinking.

 

Kyle said he feels like he’s been in a fog for the last 10 years. He had a lot of vision and no energy. Every time he woke up and swore off alcohol, but 3 pm that day he was ready to drink. There was a lot of mental back and forth he experienced. He sees now that was only will power without understanding the science behind it.

 

 

[23:23] What was your mental headspace when you were trying to quit?

 

Kyle said he lacked a lot of self love, so he was frustrated with himself all the time. He had a good façade and came off as confident, but he wasn’t the person he wanted to be internally. 

 

 

[24:15] How has this time been different for you?

 

Kyle said he is seeking help. Also, his family is a big influence about getting sober. He knows he will be there for them.

 

 

[25:16] What do you do when you get a craving?

 

Kyle said he sits with it and he thinks about the morning after, his future and what the drink can lead to.

 

 

[27:30] How has staying away from alcohol affected your anxiety & depression?

 

Kyle said it’s still there, but it’s not as severe. He now knows that drinking wont erase them and he deals with them.

 

 

[29:44] What does a day in the life of Kyle look like?

 

Kyle said it’s mainly juggling his career and his family.

 

 

[29:44] What does a day in the life of Kyle look like?

 

Jason said he makes amends a lot. He gives himself permission to be imperfect and to circle back. He practices and allows room for mistakes to happen. Being compassionate with himself. He also applies the ABCs

 

 

[30:10] Do you have any rituals in place to help you deal with cravings?

 

Kyle said he likes to keep his hands busy. He does see he’s more focused on the things he loves.

 

 

[37:16] Have you noticed a difference in your relationship with your wife?

 

Kyle said his wife really let him do what he needed and didn’t get in the way of him discovering his own path to sobriety. He has thanked her for letting him discover sobriety in his own way. 

 

 

[41:20] Do you have any specific routines during the day / morning routine?

 

Kyle said he used to but now not really. He does try to find time to exercise because it’s a stress release. If he has extra time, read a book. 

 

 

[43:43] Have you noticed your sleep has improved?

 

Kyle said living away from alcohol has improved his sleep. He used to drink to knock himself out. He’s noticed it’s much better now.

 

 

 

 

 [44:43] Rapid Fire Round 

 

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

 

Show yourself a little self love and try to understand the science behind why you drink.

 

  1. What is your favorite NA beverage?

 

Coffee, he’s trying to find a good energy drink.

 

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

 

If you haven’t tried it and you’re thinking about it, just try it. Try to understand it.

 

 

 

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

 

you mention this question to your wife because you’re struggling to come up with an answer and she gives you a list of ten.

 

Odette’s parting words:

 

Thank you. After many day 1s, she’s celebrating 2 years sober this week. 

 

Upcoming events, retreats and courses:

  • Recovery Elevator RESTORE January 2021 Course. We will be offering this starting 1/1/2021. We’re meeting 13 times in January via Zoom to give you the tools and accountability needed for an alcohol-free January… and hopefully more! 
  • You can find more information about our events here.

 

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 – Everything that you need is already inside of you- I love you guys”

Dec 7, 2020

Dr. Jason Powers took his last drink in June 2003. With many days away from all substances, this is his story of living substance free.

 

Recovery Elevator RESTORE January 2021 Course. We will be offering this starting 1/1/2021. We’re meeting 13 times in January via Zoom to give you the tools and accountability needed for an alcohol-free January… and hopefully more! 

We’ll be focusing more on creating a life where alcohol is no longer needed. We’ve found that when we have healthy altruistic relationships with fellow human beings, the need for alcohol or any external substance drastically reduces. For more information and to sign up, use this link.

 

Odette’s weekly installment of: Finding Your Better You

 

What do we do when we are waiting for an outcome or a result? Traditionally: we bolt, we remove ourselves from the moment. In sobriety we have to feel all our feelings. Feeling them is the proof that we are staying true to ourselves. And that in itself is bad ass. Keeping in mind we have to feel the feelings, but also process them, not allow ourselves to get stuck in them. On days like today, when most people feel depleted, we have to find ways to fill up our gas tank.

 

 

[7:03] Odette introduces Dr. Jason.

 

Jason is 50 years old and lives in Houston, Texas. He is a physician that focuses on addiction medicine as well as an author, an interventionist, the founder of Positive Recovery. He is married and has 3 children: 18, 15 & 11. For fun he exercises and plays the drums, 

 

 

[10:07] Can you give listeners some background on your story?

 

Jason said his first drug was sugar. It was the summer before 9th grade when he first tried marijuana. While he would quit from time to time, he consumed it a lot. He drank in high school and college. Jason quit everything during medical school. He said he went out of control after his residency because no eyes were on him anymore. He had access to cough syrup with hydrocodone which had its own set of repercussions. He had an intervention and went to rehab. In rehab he had a moment of surrender to addiction.

 

 

[16:30] What is your definition of Positive Recovery?

 

Jason said while he did get sober through a 12-step program. However he woke up later to exploring beyond the 12-steps and a broader array of recovery methods. The science of happiness (Positive Psychology) was something that he learned about and jumped in. He began to apply these methods to addictive disorders. Helping to improve outcomes is Dr. Jason’s end goal.

 

 

[25:13] Personally, did you have to deal with any relapses after your time in treatment / early recovery?

 

Jason said he felt like he had a lot of reasons for shame surrounding his addiction. In his profession it’s often looked at as a character flaw. He was very distraught and afraid when he finally surrendered to the addiction. He didn’t have a relapse, but realizes he is an anomaly. In the beginning there was the desire to relapse, but he pushed through the feelings that came with it.

 

 

[29:56] Tell me about CBT.

 

Jason said that Dr. Aaron Beck created CBT. Dr. Beck decided he needed to develop a tool to change the thinking and behavior and there is a different result. The ABC’s are: A- Activating Event, B- Belief/Thought, C- Consequence. Making the change and having people argue with themselves (A & B) to change the consequence.

ACR- Active Constructive Responding- Dr. Jason wants us all to google this and inform ourselves and apply this to our lives!

 

 

[38:28] Tell me how your life has changed.

 

Jason said a part of him woke up or was reborn after addiction. He’s still himself, but just different. He’s living a full complete lifestyle away from substances. He’s honest, my generous, more empathetic.

 

 

[40:38] How do you navigate difficult situations personally?

 

Jason said he makes amends a lot. He gives himself permission to be imperfect and to circle back. He practices and allows room for mistakes to happen. Being compassionate with himself. He also applies the ABCs.

 

 

 [42:46] Rapid Fire Round 

 

  1. What is your favorite NA beverage?

 

Diet orange soda.

 

  1. What would you say to your younger self?

 

Go find Amy Powers and marry her and get into recovery quickly!

 

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

 

Other people, other people, other people

 

  1. What book are you reading right now?

 

Ken Follett, A Dangerous Fortune

 

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

 

What are you waiting for? Try it out.

 

 

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

 

it’s causing more negative consequences to your life then it’s adding benefits.

 

Odette’s weekly challenge:

 

Think about the intro, how do you spend your waiting periods? Do you know you can come back to yourself by simply breathing and being mindful? Peace begins with you.

 

Upcoming events, retreats and courses:

  • Recovery Elevator RESTORE January 2021 Course. We will be offering this starting 1/1/2021. We’re meeting 13 times in January via Zoom to give you the tools and accountability needed for an alcohol-free January… and hopefully more! 
  • You can find more information about our events here.

 

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 – You are your own paradise”

Nov 30, 2020

Jamie took her last drink April 16, 2019. With 485 days away from alcohol, (at the time of recording) this is her story of living alcohol free (AF).

 

Odette’s weekly installment of: Finding Your Better You

 

She is currently re-reading The Compound Effect. The general idea is that baby steps add up into large rewards. Change is hard. Gaining momentum on a decision is hard. This applies to our alcohol-free journey: turning down drinks, one at a time. Once we reframe the idea of this being a sacrifice and think of it as an opportunity instead, the trajectory changes. We must think of all the things we can add into our lives without alcohol. Odette makes a list of the things she has room for in her life now. Why don’t you make one too?

 

[7:00] Odette introduces Jamie

 

Jamie is 35 years old and lives on Long Island, NY. Her immediate family lives close and she lives with her 2 black cats. Jamie is a social worker. For fun she likes to run, go kayaking, reading, cooking and hanging out with friends. Being in nature is the best, it’s where she finds her higher power.

 

[9:57] Can you give listeners some background on your drinking?

 

Jamie said she started drinking at the end of high school. In college her drinking seemed normal. She found there were hills and valleys with her drinking. When Jamie lost her mother at the age of 22 she remembers she was in a club in Greece and she identifies the synergy with that happening. The last 3-4 years her drinking escalated. She was blacking out and making poor choices. Looking back she can see the pattern of co-dependency.

 

 

[12:57] Did you notice after your mother passed that you used alcohol to deal with your grief?

 

Jamie said at first, she was so busy taking care of her father and making sure he was ok that alcohol was a secondary thought. But once she had some time away and time with her own feelings, she could see she was using alcohol the same as her mother, to numb down any emotions.

 

 

[18:05] Tell me about the first couple weeks of your journey?

 

Jamie said this was really the first time she honestly tried to get stop drinking. She had been living on the river of denial before this. Growing up her family didn’t express feelings, they drank or got angry. So, the first few weeks were new. She started a 12-step program and therapy. Jamie only knew 2 sober people at the time and she spoke to them a lot.

 

[23:49] What did you do initially when you had a craving?

 

Jamie said she didn’t really have a craving for the drink, but it was an emotional craving instead. She used a new found self-awareness to explore the feelings. She would pause and ask herself some questions about why she was feeling that way.

 

 

 

[28:18] After making the decision to not drinking, did you talk to your friends and family about it?

 

Jamie said she told people very quickly. She said the safe sentence “I’m not drinking right now”. After about a month, she started to see how this could be a lifestyle for her. 5-6 months in she began to share very openly on social media.

 

 

[30:48] What’s been the hardest part of this journey for you?

 

Jamie said feeling her feelings and not fighting them. Allowing the feelings to just be there. 

 

 

[34:27] What’s your morning routine?

 

Wakes up at 6am, feeds cats, reads and then moves her body. For the last 81 days (at the time of recording) Jamie has been running every morning. New Fashioned Sobriety and their Zero Proof Run Club hosted and a streaker challenge that she completed. Initially it was 41 days, which she completed. And now her pledge to herself is to move her body daily. She also makes sure to meditate daily.

 

 

[37:01] Did you used to have a witching hour?

 

Jamie said right after work, 5-7pm when before she would be at happy hour and now she fills the time with new routines. A fun mocktail, some tea, go for a walk, walk with a friend. 

 

 [40:13] Rapid Fire Round 

 

  1. What are you excited about right now?

 

Have her first sober healthy relationship.

 

  1. What books are you reading right now?

 

Good Morning, Destroyer of Men's Souls: A Memoir of Women, Addiction, and Love

 

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

 

I can do almost anything sober that I did drunk.

 

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

 

Jamie you are a warrior, you are a force you have no idea what this is going to bring you. You can be a light for other people.

 

  1. What is your favorite ice cream flavor?

 

Anything with chocolate or peanut butter in it and even together!

 

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

 

Café RE, Podcasts- Recovery Elevator, Recovery Happy Hour, Seltzer Squad, yoga, walking, running, kayaking and This Naked Mind and Sober Curious.

 

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

 

You are a brave, gentle soul and I applaud you. I wish you so much fun on your journey. It’s about taking that pain and making it fun. Tell somebody.

 

 

You may have to say adios to booze... 

 

You drank so much while living in your parents basement and you couldn’t make it upstairs to the bathroom, so you throw up in the washing machine. 

 

Odette’s weekly challenge:

 

Think about your AF journey. How much have you been trying to hold onto things you think this journey will take from you? Is that realistic? Make a shift, start thinking about what you want to set out of this. About what you want to add to your life? Open your eyes, beauty is all around us. Choose you, stay sober, you’re also subscribing to abundance. 

 

Upcoming events, retreats and courses:

  • You can find more information about our events here.  

 

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 – The birds are singing and when we are sober, we can actually hear them – I love you guys.”

Nov 23, 2020

Alex took her last drink April 25, 2020. With exactly 109 days away from alcohol, (at the time of recording) this is her story of living alcohol free (AF).

 

Odette’s weekly installment of: Finding Your Better You

 

The end of the year is the time when Odette sees a lot of “fuck-its”. Putting your goals on hold and coasting to the end of the year, to start fresh in the new year. 2020 particularly has been hard as so much was put on hold; we can now choose to make this year mean nothing or everything. Keep going, keep putting your good energy into the year. The rest of this year is a marathon, not a sprint to 2021. Hold onto your sobriety, visualize your path, see the people along the way cheering you on, see the finish line. You can do this.

 

[7:30] Odette introduces Alex

 

Alex is 28 years old. She is originally from Indianapolis, IN and just moved to Denver, CO. She loves hiking, mountain biking, being outside. She lives with a roommate and her dog. She’s the “designated ice cream friend” among her group of friends.

 

[10:50] Can you give listeners some background on your drinking?

 

Alex said she was never someone who drank daily, but she found herself often in drinking situations and she wasn’t able to moderate. She moved from Chicago back to Indianapolis and the drinking didn’t change like she hoped it would. Alex began to make rules around her drinking to try to moderate. Morning after morning of not remembering nights she began to explore and consider a life without alcohol. She wanted to remember everything.

 

 

[14:04] What drew you to start listening to Recovery Elevator?

 

Alex said when she was questioning her drinking, she felt she couldn’t tell anyone in her circle of friends but knew there had to be something out there in the podcast world. There was one in particular that spoke to her, she saw herself in the interviewee. Alex began to get angry at the alcohol.

 

 

[17:42] What tools work for you?

 

Alex said she walks every day, minimum 2 hours. That’s been therapeutic for her. It allows her to slow down and focus on the little things in life. When she feels a craving, she goes for a walk.

 

[19:08] Do people around you know you’re sober?

 

Alex said everybody knows now. It started as a whisper to some people and now it’s something that is just known. When 1000 Hours Dry was looking for a host, she signed right up, giving her an extra layer of accountability. 

 

 

[23:27] What’s your worst memory from drinking?

 

Alex said she woke up one morning, not remembering at all how she got home from the night before. She decided to take herself out to brunch, where she drank and rode herself home on her bike. She had an accident, breaking her wrist and giving herself a concussion. 

 

 

[27:00] What’s your go to response when someone offers you a drink?

 

Alex said she says “no thank you, I have my own drink!”

 

 

[28:55] Have you gotten to the bottom of why you chose to drink?

 

Alex said she was lonely and seeking validation. She felt she would be more likable if she drank.

 

 

[33:28] Do you ever feel a disconnect in your age decade and when you got sober?

 

Alex said she was nervous about this choice and how it would affect her social life. Reframing the idea of not drinking is what helped her get through it. She wanted to remember the things that hadn’t happened yet.

 

 

[33:28] Do you ever feel a disconnect in your age decade and when you got sober?

 

Alex said she was nervous about this choice and how it would affect her social life. Reframing the idea of not drinking is what helped her get through it.

 

 

[36:41] What’s been the hardest part of the last few months?

 

Letting go of expectations and having different expectations. Having to go with the flow.

 

 

[39:16] Do you have a daily routine?

 

Alex said she making coffee is therapeutic to her. She focuses on the enjoyment she will get from the process and the end result. She journals while drinking the coffee. Her walking is also part of what keeps her sane. Alex has some playlists that bring her peace.

 

 

 

 [43:42] Rapid Fire Round 

 

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

 

You deserve a life without alcohol.

 

  1. What are you excited about right now?

 

Getting yoga certification, meeting new people.

 

  1. What’s your favorite ice cream flavor?

 

Graham Central Station or TJ Cookie Butter

 

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

 

You don’t need a drink. You just need to be and sit through the feeling.

 

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

 

I promise this decision is fun.

 

 

You may have to say adios to booze... 

 

You’re only guaranteed to go to a wedding if there’s an open bar.

 

Odette’s weekly challenge:

 

Commit to finishing the race. Commit to your sobriety. 

Flip the question. Instead of “What’s the worst that can happen?” ask “What’s the best that can happen?”

 

Upcoming events, retreats and courses:

  • You can find more information about our events here.  

 

Grüvi discount code:

For 15% off your order with Grüvi visit their website and use the promo code recovery elevator at checkout

 

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 – I believe in you, Happy Thanksgiving”

Nov 16, 2020

Dusty took his last drink September 21, 2015. With exactly 5 years away from alcohol, (at the time of recording) this is his story of living alcohol free (AF).

 

Odette’s weekly installment of: Finding Your Better You…..by Paul Churchill

 

How to get your 300 Power Stance:

 

Grab a stick and stand in front of a mirror, put on some good music, bend the knees and ankles. Get low and grip the stick (or rake or broom). Become one with the stick. Look yourself in the eyes (in the mirror) and say, “I’m here, right now, what do you got?”, repeat, louder. Repeat and get lower. Find your stance. Focus on your connection to the earth. Pull up a painful moment from the past and change the script. Bring up the unfinish emotion and feel it. Remind yourself you are safe.

 

[16:00] Paul introduces Dusty.

 

Dusty is from Bozeman, MT. He’s a finance director for a local non-profit and just got engaged yesterday! For fun he likes to play rec sports. He goes hunting, camping, hiking and fishing in the beautiful weather he has in Bozeman.

 

[20:50] Can you give listeners some background on your drinking?

 

Dusty said the day before his last drink was spent watching sports and he blacked out around 9:30pm. The next day his friend was leaving for an around-the-world trip and he went to her leaving drinks. The bartender that night came up to him and explained that if they were working that night Dusty would have been kicked out for his behavior the night before. Another friend of his, he had kicked in the backside and when he saw her, he saw fear in her eyes when she looked at him. He paid his tab and left the bar. Never touched alcohol again. His losing control was a big motivator for him to stay sober.

 

 

[25:34] When did you find community?

 

Dusty said he’s been very lucky to have known Paul Churchill for a while before he quit. Paul was the first person he told he quit drinking and knew that community would be there for him. At the time Recovery Elevator was just getting started and Dusty participated. He was surprised how easy it was for him to share his story.

 

 

[30:11] How have the years changed for you?

 

Dusty said the 1st year was exactly that, just getting through the 1st year without a drink. In year 2 the real healing began. In 2019 was when he realized alcohol was the symptom, not the problem. He grew up with a verbally abusive father and being scared as a child, his option was to freeze and stay quiet. Coming into year 5 he’s begun therapy to understand the deep stuff that is why he reached for alcohol.

 

[37:17] What was on your heart yesterday?

 

Dusty said yesterday reflecting on the timeline of his life and his drinking was a lot for him. There was anger and sadness about the pain he experienced growing up. He was dwelling a little on the negative and he was able to purge it and get it out.

 

 

[43:51] How has the relationship with yourself changed over the last 5 years?

 

Dusty said he loves himself a lot more and continues to work on that. He has more confidence. Loving himself better lets him love the world better as well. Dusty now gives himself grace and is no longer his own worst critic. His physical appearance and health overall has changed drastically for the better.

 

 

[46:27] When the shame and guilt from your initial motivator decreased, what filled its place as a new motivator?

 

Dusty said his pink cloud lasted for years. He could see how much better his life was from walking away from alcohol. Nothing in his life got worse, everything got better. So, the idea of taking one drink he knew would make his life worse again.

 

 

[48:55] Do you still get cravings?

 

Dusty said no, not anymore. Very few moments have made him want to have a drink.

 

 

[49:38] What do you do now when life throws you a curveball?

 

Dusty said exercise works for him. He goes for a run and gets in the zone. He will also try to sit with the emotions and see where it’s coming from. He’s lucky to have close friends and family and he can talk to them.

 

 

[54:05] Rapid Fire Round 

 

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

 

Dusty, sit with the shame for a while, but don’t dwell on it forever. Use it for fuel. Enjoy the ride, all the ups and downs.

 

  1. What has recovery made possible for you?

 

He is more of a leader now.

 

  1. What’s your favorite ice cream flavor?

 

Ben & Jerry’s AmeriCone Dream or Cherry Garcia

 

  1. What book are you reading right now?

 

He’s reading a book about crows and ravens.

 

 

You may have to say adios to booze... 

 

If you are a recurring guest on the Recovery Elevator podcast!

 

Paul’s recap:

 

2020- what happened?! As per the Mayan Calendar: there is a gigantic evolutionary leap that the race needs to go through. It’s a leap through consciousness, not a physical leap.

 

Those with addiction are forced to go within and address our own inner discomfort. Because we didn’t have a choice. Realizing our inner world is more real than the outer world.

 

Upcoming events, retreats and courses:

  • You can find more information about our events here.  

 

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 – We took the elevator down, we gotta take the stairs back up, Rule #22, we have to lighten up, we can do this– Go big, because eventually we all go home”

Nov 9, 2020

Desi took her last drink July 21, 2018. With just over 2 years away from alcohol, (at the time of recording) this is her story of living alcohol free (AF).

 

If you haven't checked out the RE merchandise...what are you waiting for?? 
You can see what we have available here!

 

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

 

Hard days happen for everyone and don’t believe that highlight reel you see on Instagram! Odette calls these “dip days”. It’s ok to not thrive every single day, it’s ok to let feelings pass, it’s ok to be honest and you are not alone. 2020 is here to remind us we are stronger than we think and also what grief feels like.

 

 

 

Odette wants to share her tools for what helps her during these dip days.

 

  1. Eat
  2. Drink lots of water
  3. Meditate
  4. Laugh
  5. Remind yourself daily that you are not your productivity levels.
  6. Take your medications (if you are on any!)

 

 

 

[7:34] Odette introduces Desi.

 

Desi is 30 years old and lives in Michigan. She is finished up her Master’s in social work at University of Michigan (go blue!). In her spare time, she coaches high school lacrosse which is a huge passion of hers.

 

 

[12:38] Can you give listeners some background on your drinking?

 

Desi said her journey started at the age of 7 with an eating disorder after being sexually abused. At the age of 14 a cousin passed away and that was a big turning point for her. Her family didn’t talk about emotions. And around this time, she started drinking as well. Her first drink wasn’t normal, and it flipped a switch: she wanted more. In college she made friends with a group of people who “didn’t make wise decisions” so neither did she. Life was very hard for Desi during this. In college she met another woman, Vera, who became her sister and she credits Vera with saving her life. In 2009 she began to have chest pains, which was always diagnosed as “anxiety”, but Desi knew it wasn’t. In 2012 her sister Lauren got her into a treatment center for her eating disorder. In her second time in ED rehab she tried to get sober. However, Desi considered herself a dry drunk. November 2014 she began drinking again.

 

 

[34:04] When you came out of treatment were you frustrated that you also had to remove alcohol?

 

Desi said she didn’t even think she had a problem with alcohol at first. She knew her eating disorder was killing her and that was her focus. She held onto all the other toxic things so she could cope. Desi was scared if she didn’t have other things to help her get through life.

 

 

[39:41] Tell me about the first couple months of your sobriety.

 

Desi said she worked a program with AA. She had severe withdrawal symptoms, but she was able to talk about it in AA. There was nothing left to hide, and Desi was very honest in her shares. She reflected back on what made her want to quit drinking in the first place. Staying connected and finding community was what helped.

 

[44:09] Did your anxiety get better?

 

Desi said yes. While she’s a naturally anxious person, her anxiety has leveled. She was able to get off medication. Where her anxiety used to sit is no longer there. She experiences anxiety just like other people do, because that’s life.

 

 

[46:28] Tell me about sharing openly.

 

Desi said she needed to be able to share, she looks at it as a duty. Her sharing helps other people. She tells her story for those close to her that passed away and weren’t able to tell theirs.

 

[50:50] Rapid Fire Round 

 

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

 

Hold, have hope, let people help you, and listen to others.

 

  1. What are you excited about right now?

 

An internship at UofM.

 

  1. What’s your go to response when someone offers you a drink?

 

No, I’m good.

 

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

 

If you can think of best case scenario for your life, just know that without alcohol it’s 100% possible.

 

You may have to say adios to booze... 

 

If you sneak out, get drunk, come back home, fall down the stairs, break your leg running to the bathroom to throw up.

 

Odette’s challenge this week:

 

Reach you, Odette is here for you.

 

Upcoming events, retreats and courses:

  • You can find more information about our events here.  

 

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 – We took the stairs down, we gotta take the elevator back up, we can do this– I love you guys”

Nov 2, 2020

Karla took her last drink December 31, 2018. With 583 away from alcohol, (at the time of recording) this is her story of living alcohol free (AF).

 

Ditching the Booze - The What, the Why and the How. The new course will start November 11th, 2020. 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.

 

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

 

Melanie Beattie says “What would happen if we let go of our camouflage of adaptation? What would happen if we owned our power to be ourselves?

Would people still like us? Would they go away? Would they become angry?

 

There comes a time when we become willing and ready to take that risk. To continue growing, and living with ourselves, we realize we must liberate ourselves”

 

It’s very vulnerable to show up as our authentic selves. The more we pursue a life away from alcohol the more we walk to liberate ourselves. The humble confidence that shows up allows us to show up authentically. Remember, there’s only one you.

 

 

[7:10] Odette introduces Karla.

 

Karla is 33, grew up in the suburbs of Los Angeles and has lived in San Francisco for the past 7 years. She is an executive assistant for a tech company in the Bay area. She lives with her partner (fiancé!) and her puppy. For fun she’s been working on some passion projects, SoberIRL is one of those!

 

[10:29] Can you give listeners some background on your drinking?

 

Karla said she started drinking when she was 19. She was studying abroad and hadn’t yet made friends. Drinking was an easy way to make friends. She mimicked their style of drinking. Karla called herself a “weekend warrior” in her style of drinking. It didn’t occur to her until after she stopped drinking that her drinking was beyond what someone for her stature should. By the time she was 21 she knew she had a problem. Between brown outs and black outs she was piecing together the nights out with her friends.

 

The juxtaposition between Karla the party girl and Karla the high achiever was a push and pull she felt deeply, but she didn’t know how to stop drinking.

 

[18:07] Where you stuck in this cycle for a long time?

 

Karla said she began seeing an alcohol counselor around the age of 25. The recommendation was to stop drinking, which she wasn’t ready for because it was also her social life. In July 2018 she was able to get 45 days. Using that time, she sought out other methods of getting sober. Until her birthday and then she drank again. Finally, on New Year’s Eve she was so hung over from the night before she couldn’t go with her partner to a party, and that was it for her.

 

[23:29] Tell me about the beginning of your sobriety.

 

Karla said she still felt those first 45 days, she was being punished because she couldn’t drink. This time around she didn’t tell anyone she was restarting, and she wanted to try to be kind to herself this time. She gave herself the grace to accept that this is difficult. She taught herself that not every thought that came into her mind was true.

 

[28:51] How did you find your community?

 

Karla said at first it was all on Instagram. She followed Holly on Instagram and drew a lot of strength from her because she saw similarities in Holly’s story. Also Bridge Club through Tempest was the first time she sat with others who wanted to live this life the same way. Karla knew she needed to find sober friends. With 8 months sober she attended the Recovery Elevator Bozeman retreat in 2019 and she felt herself really start to open up and found the ability to have fun and live life sober.

 

[34:21] Tell me how you feel now being an advocate for other people looking to get sober?

 

Karla said she never thought she would be in this position. She wanted to share being an openly sober Latina as she couldn’t find any others. She wants people to see that they can have fun and be a normal human at the same time. (Karla_is_Sober)

 

[37:22] Tell me about how you share so you can be the person you needed when trying to get sober.

 

Karla said she always felt because she was so high functioning, she couldn’t have a problem with alcohol. She told herself everything she was doing was normal. Karla wants to shed the shame and let people know that if alcohol isn’t serving you anymore, you can stop. Success doesn’t mean happiness. Karla wants people to know that people can turn their lives around and life can be so much more fulfilling. 

 

[43:45] Do you get cravings?

 

Karla said not really at this point. It’s not a physical craving, it’s an emotional craving and it’s fleeting.

 

[45:41] Rapid Fire Round 

 

  1. What is your go to response when you go to a party and someone offers you a drink?

 

No thanks!

 

  1. What’s your favorite NA beverage?

 

LaCroix Pamplemousse

 

  1. What’s a lightbulb moment you’ve had in the journey?

 

PASS

 

  1. What is your favorite ice cream flavour?

 

Mint chocolate chip

 

  1. What would you say to Karla on day 1?

 

I love you and I’m so proud of you

 

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

 

You know where alcohol leads you, get first-hand experience of a life away from it.

 

You may have to say adios to booze... 

 

If the DoorDash driver knocks on your door for your wine delivery, but you don’t remember ordering it.

 

Odette’s challenge this week:

 

You are good enough. Step onto the dance floor, we are waiting you!

 

Upcoming events, retreats and courses:

  • Ditching the Booze - The What, the Why and the How. The new course will start 11/10/20. 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 here.  

 

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 – Own your power to be yourself today, Own your power to be yourself today – I love you guys”

Oct 26, 2020

Megan took her last drink April 20, 2020. With 108 days away from alcohol, (at the time of recording) this is her story of living alcohol free (AF).

 

Ditching the Booze - The What, the Why and the How. The new course will start November 11th, 2020. 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.

 

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

 

Armchair Expert: Day 7

 

Odette discusses Dax Shepard and the recent restarting of his sobriety clock. She appreciates how he is always seeking a life build in honesty and finding moment of gratefulness. What connects all of us is a feeling. What connects us all is finding our way through this book of recovery. Different chapters and experiences but all rooted in the same goal. We are not alone. Keep protecting your energy.

 

 

[10:26] Odette introduces Megan.

 

Megan lives in Montreal, Canada and is 33 years old. She lives with her partner Tim. She is a cook at a vegan restaurant. For fun she paints and draws and loves animal portraits.

 

[17:29] Can you give listeners some background on your drinking?

 

Megan said she drank a few times drinking growing up. Her parents both drank in the home and it was very normal. She got drunk for the first time when she was 17 or 18. It allowed her to breakout of her shell and be social. Moving to Montreal it became even more “normal”. It is very much a part of the culture. It changed from being out and drinking, to drinking at home, to drinking at home alone. She began combining anxiety medication with alcohol and would black out. Megan questioned her drinking in her mid 20s due to so many different events. In March of 2020 she had all the alcohol that was meant for her wedding and in 30 days’ time drank all it. It was meant to be for 80 people.

 

[28:43] What happened in April of this year that made you stop drinking?

 

Megan said it was because she ran out of alcohol. She paused and realized she had drank about $800 worth of alcohol. Megan found herself filled with shame and she realized that the way she drank it would never be enough until she was dead.

 

[34:08] Tell me about the first few weeks after you stopped.

 

Megan said it’s a little hard to remember the time right after she quit. She remembers being exuberant in finding others and creating connections. Her sleep was a little off but she was also riding the pink cloud. As time went on, she wanted to get off anti-depressants. Now she’s starting to find an equilibrium. She can finally think properly.

 

[39:33] Tell me more about your new job and being sober.

 

Megan said she mentioned in the cover letter and again in the job interview that she is in recovery. She positioned it as an asset! They are really respectful of her being sober from alcohol.

 

[44:25] Tell me about your relationship with your partner now.

 

Megan said her partner already started out as a wicked person. He was concerned for her but also understood that the desire to stop drinking had to come from her. He’s really proud of her and expresses that to her.

 

 [46:36] Rapid Fire Round 

 

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

 

You are going to flourish!

 

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

 

That I am capable, and I am worth a lot. Stop telling myself bullshit.

 

  1. What’s your favorite AF beverage?

 

Coffee! Coffee with oat milk, iced coffee, black coffee.

 

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

 

Just take it day by day but remember to believe in yourself. You are capable and strong and you will keep amazing yourself.

 

You may have to say adios to booze... 

 

If you drank all your wedding booze in one month that was intended for 80 people.

 

Odette’s challenge this week:

 

Everyone is fighting their own battle and try not to judge anyone else. We need kindness and love, more than ever.

 

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:

  • Ditching the Booze - The What, the Why and the How. The new course will start 11/10/20. 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 – “Stay humble and stay smiling – I love you guys”

Oct 19, 2020

DeeDee took her last drink May 5, 2020. With 91 days away from alcohol, (at the time of recording) this is her story of living alcohol free (AF).

 

This weekend is Recovery Elevator’s first ever REgionals! Join us for our online zoom conference this October 23-24th. This event is FREE for Café RE Members only. Not a member yet?! Sign up here and use the promo code OPPORTUNITY to waive the set-up fee.

 

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

 

After watching the Social Dilemma on Netflix Odette has some thoughts about social media and its place in our lives. She wants us to continue to protect our energy and set boundaries.

 

  1. Talk about it.
  2. Uninstall apps, unfollow people, unsubscribe from emails.
  3. Turn off notifications.
  4. Look for chrome extensions that removed clickbait.
  5. Fact check yourself.
  6. Delay giving devices to children.
  7. Try to have devices out of your bedroom.

 

[11:37] Odette introduces DeeDee.

 

DeeDee lives in Santa Barbara, California and is 29 years old. She lives with her finance and their 2 dogs. For work, DeeDee is the Director of Development for a non-profit. For fun she’s trying to figure that out still, but recently she’s begun crafting again and making candles.

 

[15:50] Can you give listeners some background on your drinking?

 

DeeDee grew up being aware of alcohol because alcoholism runs in her family. Her father got sober 14 years ago. She didn’t drink a lot in high school. When she turned 21, she drank to fit in, but even then, didn’t really like alcohol. In the beginning of 2013, she noticed that she drew a correlation between being loved and being intoxicated. Her partner at the time only expressed love when he was drunk. In 2017 DeeDee realized she was drinking alone. In 2018/2019 she dabbled in sobriety for short periods of time. She got engaged in late 2019 and they used that excuse for more drinking to “celebrate”.

 

[22:11] Did you ever connect the dots of alcohol being a problem in your family and your own drinking?

 

DeeDee said she was in denial for a lot of it. She didn’t know a lot of women who had problems with alcohol, so she rationalized that it was only the men in her family who had a problem.

 

[23:38] Did you and your finance decide together to quit drinking?

 

DeeDee said they came to the conclusion of quitting drinking on their own, but also at the same time. During early sobriety they both experienced different things and she has learned how to set different expectations based on their own individual experiences.

 

[26:28] Tell me about the last 90 days.

 

DeeDee said in the beginning she was very focused on how to live a sober life and what that was going to look like for her. She was seeing changes in her thought patterns. DeeDee focused on finding out why she is the way she is. After a month or so, she began to try and find balance in her life and her recovery.

 

[31:17] How did the conversation go with your father when you told him you weren’t drinking?

 

DeeDee said it happened on May 5th 2020. He’s been incredibly supportive. The conversation was very matter of fact and easy for her. Both her parents were there, and they met her with understanding.

 

[32:52] What do you do when you get a craving?

 

DeeDee said she has more emotional cravings then physical cravings. Seeing people with a glass of wine on a patio on a Friday afternoon makes her want that feeling, not the wine. That connection and relaxation is what she’s looking for. Now she plays the tape forward, knowing that it will not ever just be one glass of wine. Instead now she chooses a different action, be it a walk or a podcast or ice cream.

 

[36:47] What’s your favorite AF drink now?

 

DeeDee said sparkling water and also making a fun mocktails.

 

[38:54] What you been able to identify any emotional triggers?

 

DeeDee said she’s learned that she has emotional triggers when she’s feeling had a difficult day or moment. She wants to sit on the couch and feel like the alcohol is helping her unwind. Leaning her emotions are temporary has been huge.

 

[41:46] Have you gotten any pushback from people?

 

DeeDee said she started posting on an Instagram account she had that was mostly filled with followers she didn’t know in real life. It was easier for her to open up and share, giving her confidence to move onto people in her real life. It was liberating when she decided to post on her “real” account where she was followed by people in her real life. She received awesome feedback and responses.

 

[45:57] Rapid Fire Round 

 

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

 

In this moment, exactly where you are, you are enough.

 

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

 

The opposite of addiction is connection and how true this statement is.

 

  1. What are you excited about right now?

 

Getting married and starting a life together and doing it without booze.

 

  1. What is your favorite ice cream flavour?

 

Chocolate chip cookie dough

 

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

 

Recovery Elevator podcast, Recovery Happy Hour podcast, AA meetings, therapy.

 

You may have to say adios to booze... 

 

If the first time you’ve ever been honest with a doctor about the amount your drinking AFTER you decided to stop.

 

Odette’s challenge this week:

 

Take inventory of the relationship you have with your smart phone. Be honest. Make a small list of boundaries you can put in place. Baby steps add up and came impact change.

 

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 FREE 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 11/10/20. 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 here.  

 

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 – “Turn those f’ing notifications off, life’s too short to be looking down at your phone all the time – I love you guys”

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