Greg took his last drink on October 2, 2012. This is his story.
Registration is now open for the 2020’ Recovery Elevator LIVE event, Dancing with the Mind. The event will take place June 11-13 in Denver, CO. You can find more information about our events here.
On today’s episode Paul talks about what happens to the dome when you stop drinking alcohol. There is a long list of benefits of quitting alcohol, and the mental health aspects are just as important as the physical ones.
In the first year away from alcohol, and beyond, neurons in the brain that no longer fire together, no longer wire together. This means the neural connections that spark when we want to drink, or take a drink, begin to fade. In time new neural connections are created that don’t involve alcohol.
[9:40] Paul introduces Greg.
Greg is 35 years old and from Orange County, CA. Greg is an actor and has a 4-year-old daughter. For fun Greg likes to go on adventures with his daughter and create music.
[12:25] Give us a background on your drinking.
Greg first started drinking alcohol as a social lubricant. Alcohol made it easier to talk to people and deal with things that he had tried to avoid. In the beginning Greg was more of a clown when he drank, but in his early to mid-twenties his drinking got out of hand. He was no longer drinking for fun anymore; he was relying on it to get through the day.
[19:07] Was there a time when you knew the gig was up but you didn’t know where to go for help, or how to stop?
Greg said yes, that it was a really demoralizing moment involving alcohol and cocaine. He woke up, went outside in the rain, chain smoked about 10 cigarettes, and knew he needed to talk to somebody. He called his sister, and without giving it much thought, told her he needed help. His sister was there 20 minutes later, and with Greg’s mom helped get him into a place.
[20:55] What happened after that?
Greg entered a treatment center and white knuckled it the first two weeks, and then eventually the clarity started to come.
[24:30] Talk to us about your experience after rehab.
Greg said he surrounded himself with sober friends and family. He started going to school and focused on that, and also stated going to meetings. About 6 months out Greg got a job volunteering at a treatment center. He said he stayed really busy with a lot of structure.
[26:35] Why do you think it’s so hard for people to ask for help?
Greg said he thinks that it’s our pride that gets in the way a lot of the times. Greg said he had a hard time asking for help because he felt that he would be a burden on someone and he didn’t want people to become resentful of him.
[36:00] How could it affect us if we are always thinking about the past or the future?
Greg says if we are always thinking about the past we are going to tend to be depressed, and if we are always thinking about the future, we are going to tend to be anxious. Either one just drags us down and we are not productive.
[38:00] Why do you think addiction is higher in the entertainment industry?
Greg said that there are several reasons, one being that it is more readily available.
[44:00] Rapid Fire Round
- What’s a lightbulb moment you’ve had on this journey?
Witnessing my daughter being born.
- What is a memorable moment that a life without alcohol has given you?
My trip to Argentina.
- What is your favorite alcohol-free drink?
Yerba Mate Revel Berry.
- What are some of your favorite resources on this journey?
AA literature, online literature, stuff like that.
- What is on your bucket list in an alcohol-free life?
Seeing my daughter have kids.
- And what parting piece of guidance can you give to listeners?
Don’t be afraid to ask for help.
You might need to ditch the booze if…
You get married in a blackout.
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Asia Adventure – January 20-31, 2020
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Resources mentioned in this episode:
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