A lot of coaches and mentors teach from books, training, and what they've learned through other people.
Those things are nice to have, but my teachings come from a decade of my journey in recovery. I know addiction intimately.
I've carried it on my body and soul for decades - and have learned to co-exist with it in peace. I understand its voice, its craving, its stories, the lies it fed me for a long time. I understand the shame, guilt and blame it brought me - and how it used them to keep me bound.
Most importantly, I understand the joy and freedom of releasing addiction - and the shift needed to get there.
My job is to share this journey with you, and help you do the same.
For three decades I drank too much. The more I drank, the more I lost who I was. The more lost I was, the more in pain I felt. The more in pain, the more I drank. I thought I was a bad human being on every count.
I didn't understand I suffered from an addiction to alcohol, not from moral failure. I was not a bad person (I'm actually pretty freaking cool), I was simply a person who was mentally, physically and spiritually addicted to a substance.
The next day, I showed up to my first 12-step meeting. There, I found out that I was not just dealing with a "bad habit. I had to get 100% clear on what this monkey was. For me, it was pretty clear, it was addiction.
Once I understood that addiction was my problem, I could start working on the solution - recovery. Not everyone is an addict, by the way. But because I was, my solution was different than just "trying to quit." I found that when I stopped lying to myself, I was able to get clarity and understand what action I needed to take next.
My recovery has been a non-linear, messy, beautiful 10-year journey. It included a long relapse back into drinking, a lot of pain and a lot of learning. I am grateful for all of it.
I’ve gotta be honest: The first 5 years of my sobriety were not years where I felt empowered, happy or truly proud of my sobriety. I felt like a robot, going through the motions to get through the day and do what “I need to do” to stay sober – but inside, I felt exhausted, depleted and like a total victim.
No wonder I ended up chugging warm chardonnay in a parking lot one day. Not every recovery path includes relapse, but mine did. I got disconnected from the source that kept me sober, and I dove back into addiction for 2 full years. I had a really hard time getting out.
I had to accept my addiction with total ownership in order to surrender into recovery - then create a plan of action.
But once I got 100% clear on my truth, I could follow it with action.
Here's my magic action checklist:
I'm grateful and proud to call myself an addict / alcoholic in recovery. While a lot of people don't live with the terms (I honor each person's choice). I needed to be crystal clear on my truth. When I wasn't, I ended up at a bar. Now I wear the term like a badge of honor.
Recovery brings me peace, serenity and an anchor for my soul. I know ME today. I turned out to be a pretty cool human being, mom, teacher, sister, daughter, friend. Who knew?
But mostly, I am grateful because my journey helps others. Recovery is a "hey, me too" business like none other.
Today, I get the honor of holding the hand of those who want to start their journey. Is this you?
My job is not to convince you. Recovery is a deeply personal choice. But baby, you have the power to be your own hero.
I see you and I know you're capable of changing your life - for good and all.
We can do this together.
Come here me speak at the SHERECOVERS Miami 2020 event, sharing the stage with Abby Wambach, Lauren McKowen and other badasses.
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