Dan took his last drink 370 days ago. This is his story.
Update on the Alcohol is Sh!t book! The book is out! Pick up your copy on Amazon here!
On today’s episode Paul talks about how this journey into a new life without alcohol can be fun. In fact, he says, it must be fun. If you’re not having fun right now that is ok, you are not doing anything wrong. Recovering your true self, a life filled with inner joy and abundance, can only be done with love. You can’t fight darkness with darkness.
Here are some strategies to invite love into your life…stop comparing yourself to others, get off social media, tell yourself ‘I love you’, listen to your body, put on headphones and dance.
[9:30] Paul introduces Dan.
Dan celebrated 1 year of sobriety on July 28, 2019. He is 37 years old and lives in Cottage Grove, MN. He is a teacher and teaches middle school math. He has 5-year-old twins, a boy and a girl, and a 10-year-old daughter. Dan is married and they just celebrated 13 years. For fun Dan likes to exercise and hike.
[16:20] Give us a background on your drinking.
Dan had his first drink in high school and bartended through college. He says his drinking just carried over into what he calls ‘his adult life’ and it just stuck with him. He wasn’t a binge drinker; it was more of cracking a couple beers open every night after work.
Dan started to become depressed, getting anxious if he couldn’t drink his beers each night. He says he had some suicidal thoughts.
[20:45] What did that depression feel like?
Dan got to the point where he was finding no joy in anything, including alcohol, his job or his family. He confided in a friend about his depression and that was the start of his journey into sobriety. When he confided in his wife, he felt that he was surrendering and ready to get help.
[24:00] When did you tell your wife and what happened after that?
Dan says he made the commitment to stop drinking last summer and told his wife after about a week in. Dan says his wife overheard him listening to the Recovery Elevator podcast and that was the beginning of their conversation about his drinking and depression.
[26:35] Talk to us about the 1st week, the 1st month.
Dan made a doctor’s appointment a couple weeks in to talk about his depression and was prescribed anti-depressants/antianxiety medication. He was worried about how he would feel once taking the medication but says it has really helped him. Dan listened to the RE podcasts daily and would reach out to his wife when he was struggling at all. He also told his oldest daughter that he was quitting drinking alcohol.
[35:30] With a year away from the alcohol how has the depression been?
Dan says it has gotten better. He is going to sit down with his doctor and discuss if he should come off the meds, he says he was scared to go on them in the beginning and is now a little worried about coming off them.
[37:25] What’s on your bucket list now with a year of sobriety?
Next summer he’s going to finish up the Superior Hiking Trail and possibly do a ½ marathon.
[38:44] You haven’t mentioned AA or 12-step, did you not go to AA during this last year?
Dan says he never put it out of his mind or took it off the table, and that he even looked up when and where meetings were; but that he never went to a meeting.
[40:40] Rapid Fire Round
My lightbulb moment was that I needed to fail a few times before I was actually able to be successful with it.
The biggest gift is time.
Well my beer fridge has now became a sparkling water fridge.
I definitely have to say Recovery Elevator, plus my friends and my family.
It would have to be that there is so much freedom once you have given up alcohol.
You have a fight with your girlfriend, decide to move out, and realize that you have only packed a camera and a swimsuit.
Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020
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