Brandon took his last drink October 28, 2018. With 645 days away from alcohol, (at the time of recording) this is his story of living alcohol free (AF).
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[7:08] Odette introduces Brandon.
Brandon lives in Orlando, Florida with his wife and son. He’s a social media manager. For fun he likes to go on adventures with his son, he plays music and enjoys being creative.
[10:42] Can you give listeners some background on your drinking?
Brandon said he started drinking at the age of 21, he wasn’t interested in drinking while growing up. He was focused on sports and playing in bands. His first couple years of drinking he didn’t suffer the usual repercussions. At about 3 years in he began to experience hangovers. College drinking helped him deal with his anxiety. Brandon noticed the years after college he was using alcohol as a crutch. He found himself turning to alcohol for to handle anything that life threw at him. He was trying to show a front of perfectionism while internally struggling so much.
[19:24] Did your wife every approach you about your drinking?
Brandon said his wife would question sometimes the beer(s) he would have with dinner. He could tell she knew something was wrong. His rock bottom was a Halloween party in 2018 where he drank too much and they had a fight. She was 7 months pregnant and expressed concern about having to do the next stage of life alone. That was enough for him.
[29:11] Talk to me more about the time right after you stopped drinking.
Brandon said he was prepared for it to be hell but didn’t consider all the other things that go into it. He was open with his wife and friends. He turned to fitness to keep his mind moving. He took things hour by hour and focused just on the moment he was in. Brandon discovered a confidence in himself he didn’t know was there.
[35:18] Do you still get cravings?
Brandon said no, but there are times where it sounds good to take the edge off with alcohol.
[36:27] What’s in your toolbox?
Brandon said his wife is his biggest support. The /r/stopdrinking Reddit page. The idea of sharing with others gives him motivation.
[39:32] Do you ever get push back from people?
Brandon said yes, he does. He feels because he dealt with it silently for so many years, people had a hard time understanding the level of drinking he had come to achieve.
[44:57] Rapid Fire Round
- If you could talk to younger Brandon what would you say?
Listen to your parents, don’t try it.
- What is your go to NA beverage?
- What parting piece of guidance can you give listeners who are thinking about ditching the booze?
Listen to your gut. What’s in your mind is the truth. There’s no better time than now.
You may have to say adios to booze…
If you’re in a meeting at 2pm and you’re thinking about what you’re going to drink tonight.
Odette’s challenge this week:
Try to see yourself differently this week. Be more compassionate when you make a mistake. Give people in your life the benefit of the doubt. Be nice to strangers.
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