Tired of Thinking About Drinking

Archive for the tag “100 days sober”

sober treats

flowers-desserts-treat-jan23-16

Thanks to the Tiny Gift Button

ANY use creates a craving for more

from Sober Challenge (day 1):

“Hi Belle. I’m doing ok but I’m sorry to say I drank last night.

I went to my therapist meeting on monday and we have however formed a plan for me to tackle this. I don’t know what you would think to her suggestion but I think it could help me. She thought that as I have tried to quit for over a year by stopping, perhaps I needed to “try something different” (sound familiar) 😉

The thing I’m not sure you’ll agree with is that she gave me this method that she uses to break the cycle. We have written a “ladder” of things that I associate with alcohol and where I use alcohol to help with anxiety starting with the easiest to do without alcohol to the hardest. I now have to start at the bottom of the ladder, do the activity as many times as possible in the first week without alcohol and continue until I don’t have the anxiety and it is normal to do the activity sober and anxiety free. She is going to see me once a week and I will record all my feelings and experiences. The aim is that within a few months I will have worked on all the steps of the ladder and then be in a better position mentally and physically to commit to a sober life.

I am going to give it a try as I feel more positive and feel I can approach it this way. But if you think this is not a good idea, I’m open to your thoughts …”

me: sweet pea, let me say this.

I don’t know you in real life, and I’m not a therapist, and I’m not YOUR therapist. I don’t know all that is ‘UP’ with you. and you should never take the advice of a girl on the internet anyway :)

and here’s what I think.

it sounds like your therapist is using some ‘exposure’ therapy ideas to help to deal with your anxiety. like, imagine you were afraid to go outside. first you’d stand on your front step. then you’d walk to the corner and back. then next week you’d walk around the block. and you’d slowly get used to doing things.

and maybe you do have an anxiety problem, and maybe you do really need some kind of immersion/exposure therapy.

but my guess is that your therapist is not a sober human, and that she isn’t an alcohol specialist.

in my head (where I spend most of my time!), if you have an anxiety thing then yes, it does require treatment. exposure, counselling, medication. If you’re using alcohol to deal with anxiety, it’s adding a problem to a problem.

but what therapist is saying, is something like “let’s find all the ways you can go through life without cocaine and then slowly increase the percentage of your day when you’re not using cocaine.”

the problem with cocaine (and booze) is that they’re addictive. and that ANY use creates a craving for more. and any use creates problems with anxiety. so to me, continuing to drink in any amount while dealing with anxiety stuff  is like tying your legs together and asking you to walk.

again really, I am not an expert and I know NOTHING.

you may well need some medication. you might need rehab or outpatient treatment. my personal opinion is that you can’t really treat anxiety (for real) unless you’re sober. because the noise in our head is so loud because of the booze, that it’s just not able to integrate other things. (I sometimes wish I could go back and do all of the counselling I did before but do it sober, like it’d be so much more useful…)

the same can be said for the medications we take for depression or anxiety. while they work, they gotta be working BETTER when we’re sober, right?

again, really, are you ignoring me? you should be – but again, I don’t think that drinking is something we can ‘think’ about in a new way. it’s not logical. it’s not rational. it’s not sensible. our brains are complicated places. if it was ‘easy’ we’d all work through some kind of process and come out the other side as occasional one-drink drinkers. and that isn’t what happens. It “should” happen if you think about it logically. but it doesn’t. because nothing about alcohol use is logical.

and I don’t think we can change how we think about drinking while we’re still drinking. it’s only once the booze is removed that things begin to change.

well there. that’s my opinion.

please delete this message now :)

and keep emailing.
hugs hugs

Audio: Adult Learners (Part 1)


This is Sober Podcast Episode #120 sent to monthly sober podcast subscribers a few weeks ago.

Do you know why it’s so hard for adults to learn new skills? they hate feeling like they’re making mistakes. they hate not knowing what they’re doing.

The audio was running long, so I split it into two parts. An extract from Part 1 is below.

Comments from the chat:


NewChris: It’s a learning experience – as weird as it sounds – and it gets easier just like anything else.

surfrider11: The brave ones embrace the opportunities to learn….

Soberp82: love that – it’s me but a version 2.0!


Here’s an extract from part 1. It’s about 3 minutes long. .

 

Audio: Ranty Belle (Part 2)


This is Sober Podcast Episode #119 sent to monthly sober podcast subscribers last week.

This is a longer audio, which involves a fair amount of me ranting (an unusual event). I say things “I Call Bullshit” and “Not Possible.” This is the first time this has happened (ranting on a podcast, I mean). It’s either motivating or scary. Not sure.

The audio was running long, so I split it into two parts. If you missed Part 1, you can get it here. Part 2 is below.

Comments from the chat:


Taylor: “Love the ranting, it helps me remember to stay passionate about getting sober and not get complacent. Keep it up.”

GloMix: “We all rant in our heads about booze, so it’s great to hear it coming from you. It’s positive to get it out there.”

redhookgal: “The ranting puts my shit in perspective. thanks!”


Here’s an extract from part 2. It’s about 2 minutes long. I am ranting. I don’t normally do this. But from time to time, it might help.

 

Audio: Ranty Belle (Part 1)

This is audio #118 which the monthly sober podcast subscribers received earlier this week.

I started off sweetly enough. Talking about why we need to have a new ‘off’ button once booze is removed.

Then the sweetness turned into ranting. I say things “I Call Bullshit” and “Not Possible.” This is the first time this has happened (ranting on a podcast, I mean). It’s either motivating or scary. Not sure.

Again, this audio was recorded in front of a live audience. So it’s longer than usual. Since it was running over half an hour, I’ve split it into two parts.

Comments from the chat:


Taylor: “Love the ranting, it helps me remember to stay passionate about getting sober and not get complacent. Keep it up.”

GloMix: “We all rant in our heads about booze, so it’s great to hear it coming from you. It’s positive to get it out there.”

redhookgal: “The ranting puts my shit in perspective. thanks!”


Here’s an extract from part 1. It’s about 3 minutes long. I am ranting. I don’t normally do this. But from time to time, it might help.

 

Audio: Motivation

This is audio #117 for my monthly sober podcast.

Turns out that motivation needs to be applied daily. Who knew? All the things we do to be sober, our sober supports — we think other people are magically getting along without boosts to their energy. And we’re wrong :)

This audio was recorded in front of a live audience. So it’s longer than usual, a double episode, 30+ minutes long.

Comments from the chat:

DJ56 says: “Thought there was something wrong with ME when the gas tank was empty…”

Rabbit: “Thanks Belle, excellent stuff”

AlexP: “[Getting a dose of motivation], it’s got to be like brushing your teeth. After all, we were motivated to drink. We need a Motivation Store to drop into, on our way round our day.”

Here’s an extract. It’s a 3 minute sample taken from about the half-way point.

 

Audio: Should I Quit or Cut Down?

This is audio #116 for my sober podcast subscribers.

I recorded this podcast yesterday with a live audience. There were a total of 19 people listening in and sending me messages on the chat. Totally different and fun. And the result? What was supposed to be a new 10 minute audio for you turned out to be over 20 minutes long.

This podcast deals with an email I received last Friday:

Hi there! I am a 46 year old mum of 2. Alcohol has always been in my life but increased after stepping back from my career and having children. I would say I noticed it was a real problem in the past 2 years. This is day 12  alcohol free for me, the longest time without alcohol in ten years.  I’d like to know lots of things! … Should I abstain completely or cut down?

The full audio podcast runs for over 20 minutes and is on the podcast page for subscribers. Here’s an extract. It’s a 3 minute sample taken from about the half-way point.

 

 

Audio: Day 11

This is audio #115 for my weekly sober podcast thingy.

What’s it like to be on Day 11 sober. Is it exciting, or scary, or weird, or all of these emotions combined. What’s it like to be in the first month sober. First party, first events, all new.

What’s it like to learn it all from scratch, and be excited and terrified at the same time.

And what would you like to hear if you were on Day 11?

This morning I randomly spoke with one of the 2600 people on my mailing list.

I’d like you to meet Taylor. She’s on day 11.

The full audio podcast runs for about 37 minutes and is on the podcast page for subscribers. Here’s an extract. It’s the first 3 minutes from the audio.

 

click here to try a podcast subscription (1 month trial) – and of course, when you get bored of me, you can cancel whenever you want

Comment from podcast subscriber ChefStarr: “BTW – I loved loved LOVED the podcast with the phone call with Taylor. Listening to you talk her through the Halloween party that she was nervous about hosting sober. I hope she finds what we know — that being drunk only adds to the stress of being a hostess, instead of helping. But I loved how you talked to her; you were kind and funny and compassionate. And boy howdy, it brought back vivid memories of how early sobriety felt. I really enjoy listening to your podcasts, but this one was one of my favorites.”

 

anonymous sex confession booth

step right up. for one day only, i’m creating an anonymous sober confession booth about SEX. Yes, i’ve got something running through my head and i thought, OK, let’s blog about it. and really, it’s amazingly hard to talk about sex even when we’re quasi-anonymous online. And so then i thought, OK, let’s make it 100% anonymous, me included.

So here’s the deal.

  1. Post a comment below.

  2. For this to work you MUST leave your name and your email and your website address BLANK in the comments form (if you forget, i’ll go in and delete that info manually). all comments are to be anonymous.  one of the comments will be from me, you just won’t know which one.

  3. I have no way of personally knowing who posts what. Promise.

  4. In your comment, write two or three sentences (max.) about something about sex that you think is ONLY your problem and that probably no one else has the same problem as you do. For example, i’ll make one up: “I can’t initiate sex when sober but i used to be able to when drinking” … OR … “i worry that i’m the only person who has x problem now that i’m sober.”

  5. Then take a second and post ONE anonymous ‘reply’ to one of the other comments already posted, and say something comforting, consoling, forgiving, kind. In fact, it would simply help if you said “i have this problem, too.”

i have a feeling that this will unfold in a lovely way. because you’re all lovely people. and we all have sex shit that we can’t talk about.

PS. if your name/email automatically shows up when you start to enter a comment, you can manually delete them OR you can ‘log out’ of your blogging profile.

 

Audio: Emotional Honesty

This is audio #107 for my weekly sober podcast thingy.

it’s about emotional honesty. I hit a wall while on vacation, and i just got tired of talking about nothingness. maybe this happens to you, too. i started to really crave some ‘sober’ discussions. Recorded offline, mid-way through a run, standing in an alley.

The full audio podcast runs for about 13.5 minutes, and here’s an extract. It’s 3 minutes long.

 

click here to try a podcast subscription (1 month trial) – and of course, when you get bored of me, you can cancel whenever you want

 

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