Mona, with 2 weeks since her last drink, shares her story…….
Paul starts the show by answering some “fan“ mail questions about God and AA. Many listeners wonder how they can participate in AA without accepting a higher power. When the pain of drinking outweighs everything else, you just may be willing to try anything. Statistics show that alcoholism is on the rise but attendance at AA meetings is stagnant or even on a slight decline. Attendance at AA meetings may be on the decline because it is a religious based program and also because of the stigma involved (don’t be a hater!).
In a recent article found on TheInfluence.org, http://theinfluence.org/american-gulag-the-five-ways-hundreds-of-thousands-of-people-are-coerced-into-rehab-and-aa/ , it is discussed how people are being forced into AA or rehab, either by employers or the Courts. Legally, however, a person cannot be forced into AA because it is considered a religious program. Experience shows us that you will be more successful in a program that you choose voluntarily. So whether it is AA, SMART, Life Ring, or your own personalized plan, find a program that makes you want to live and love life. Work that program as if your life depended on it (because quite frankly, it does!).
[ 10:08 ] Paul Introduces Mona
She currently lives in Chicago. She is 23 years old, loves to read and create playlists. Mona is still figuring out all of the new things she likes to do now that she does not drink.
[ 13:43 ] When did you realize you had a problem?
Mona – it has been about 4 years in the making. When I was 19 years old, I drank way too much and was super hungover. I was totally embarrassed because my parents witnessed this. I quit alcohol for the next 30 days but knew that I was not completely done with it,
[ 16:21 ] Did you ever put any rules in place to try and moderate your drinking?
Mona – for 2 years I tried to manage the amount of drinks I would have in 1 sitting. I set my limit at 4 and after that I would just leave the bar. I realized I had a problem when I was putting so much energy into trying to moderate.
[ 20:13 ] What was your bottom?
Mona – I did not really have a rock bottom. I remember my parents had paid for this great trip to the Grand Canyon and the entire trip I was trying to keep control of my alcohol intake in front of them. The Grand Canyon was so beautiful and it just showed how messy my life had become because of alcohol.
[ 21:57 ] How does it feel to be sober at 23 years old?
Mona – I feel proud but also overwhelmed at the thought of never drinking again.
[ 23:15 ] How did you do it?
Mona – I tried will power at first and I was also seeing a therapist who I was finally honest with. So far the temptation to drink has not been too bad. My holiday work party was slightly difficult and I left early. I also started telling my close friends that I had stopped drinking.
[ 26:30 ] What do you think would happen if you started drinking again?
Mona – nothing productive would happen. I would be totally stagnant in my life and in my job. I would not be happy at all.
[ 28:38 ] What is your plan moving forward?
Mona – I am experimenting with creating my own plan of recovery. I want to explore all of my options.
[ 32:52 ] What do you want to achieve in sobriety?
Mona – I would like to have deeper and more authentic relationships. I want to become connected to who I really am and to go after the jobs that I really want.
[ 35:07 ] Rapid Fire Round
Resources mentioned in this episode:
Book of the Month – The Untethered Soul by Michael Singer
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“We took the elevator down, we gotta take the stairs back up, we can do this!”