Normally, I write about dysfunctional and codependent relationships. And today is no different. It’s just that I’m going to be writing about a dysfunctional relationship with alcohol.
Let’s talk about getting and staying sober. sobriety and get sober or stay sober.
Whether it’s you trying to go alcohol free or you’re racking your brain trying to figure out how to help a loved one get motivated to quit drinking.
As I’m writing this, I have been alcohol-free for 10 years: sober I didn’t use traditional programs to do that. I don’t work a traditional program and I never went to treatment. I’m not an expert on how somebody should get sober. As far as I’m concerned, there are many roads to Rome.
What works for one person doesn’t work for the next person. Today, I just want to talk about making the decision to be sober and discuss what motivates one to do so.
I had so many conversations in my head about slowing down my drinking before I finally got sober.
I’d wake up after a binge and say to myself, “Never again! That’s it!” And then I’d strategize about how to drink more successfully next time.
If you aren’t sure if you’re in a dysfunctional relationship with alcohol, you can access this free guide here.
The morning that I decided to quit I woke up from a particularly boozy evening. That night I’d paired my wine with Ativan and did what I’d done so many mornings. I looked over at my partner to see how much trouble I should be in for whatever I did that I couldn’t remember because I had blacked-out.
I had no idea what I’d done and had absolutely no recollection but I’d look at his face to see how he would respond to me. But that morning something just snapped and I looked over at him and I said “That’s it I’ve had my last drink.”
It wasn’t a rock bottom. I’d had plenty of those when I wrecked cars or lost major opportunities.
It wasn’t that my life was so terrible.
I had a great boyfriend. I had a good job. I had money. My life was actually pretty good and in tha moment I thought, “I don’t want to fuck this up.”
I started to like think about the life I wanted and that I was creating
We think it has to be so bad. We believe in the concept of “Rock Bottom”. We think we have to lose absolutely everything.
But sometimes when all is lost, there’s no motivation to be found at all.
And let’s be real. Does anyone ever really want to be Stone Cold Sober?
might be wrong but one of my clients said. “Wouldn’t it be nice to just walk through life with a 2 beer buzz?”
It’s not that we want to be sober, we want what’s on the other side of sober.
I had a tiny taste of the life I wanted and I developed an appetite for more.
Look, we are all different, Maybe pain is the motivator for you.
Maybe this s*** needs to hit the fan for you to get motivated to change. But that’s not going to keep you motivated to stay sober.
I had pain. I couldn’t have another morning consisting of the metaphorical walk of shame.
But what happens to pain over time? It;s meant to wear off.
Pain can push us into sobriety. But if we don’t have the second piece we’re screwed and the second piece is the pull of purpose.
The push the pain will get you started but the pull of purpose will help you finish.
Who are you becoming on the other side of sobriety/
When I first got sober I just wanted to stop waking up with Shame. I wanted to stop feeling sorry for things I couldn’t eleven remember.
My first goal was to just have a successful substance free relationship.
Motivation is a moving target. Once you accomplish one thing, you are onto the next.
After I accomplished the relationship goals, I then had a bigger purpose to teach and coach at a drug and alcohol center, which I did for several years. I helped thousand oof people and I feelt so honored to be a part of their journey to wellness.
During group therapy, I’d ask the clients, “Why do you want to be sober?”
Someone would raise her hand and say, “I just want to be a productive member of society.”
I’d say, “Okay well that’s nice. You can pay taxes and drive on the right side of the road and stay out of jail. But that can’t be all there is. Because I’ll tell you what, you’ll be miserable and it will be more appealing to be drunk!”
These people forgot how to dream.
- Who do you want to be?
- What experiences do you want to have?
- What is already available to you that you could put your energy and focus into and double down your gratitude?
- Are you a parent? Could your new mission be to break the toxic/dysfunctional patterns you’re living for your future grandkids?
- Are you in Hell? Can your motivation be to become a coach for someone else going through Hell someday?
- Where are the possibilities?
There’s never enough wine, because that’s not what you really want. You’re drinking is not the problem. Your drinking is the solution to an unfulfilling life. What’s going to fulfill you?
If you have no idea what that is, please reach out and let’s connect. I’d love to help guide you back to your true self.