EP #164

Emotional Sobriety with Colleen Kachmann

alcoholic minimalist podcast

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In this episode, Molly Watts delves into emotional sobriety and its link to alcohol with Colleen Cashman, discussing strategies to combat family alcohol abuse and foster a peaceful relationship with alcohol. They explore the journey towards sobriety, with Colleen sharing their personal battle with alcohol addiction and the mental health struggles it brought. Both emphasize the importance of understanding the underlying reasons for drinking and the need for emotional management in recovery. Through personal anecdotes and insightful discussions, they shed light on the complexities of sobriety, identity shifts, and self-care practices, offering valuable resources for those seeking emotional sobriety and a healthier relationship with alcohol.

Welcome to the alcohol minimalist podcast. I’m your host Molly watts. If you want to change your drinking habits and create a peaceful relationship with alcohol, you’re in the right place. This podcast explores the strategies I use to overcome a lifetime of family alcohol abuse, more than 30 years of anxiety and worry about my own drinking, and what felt like an unbreakable daily drinking habits. Becoming an alcohol minimalist means removing excess alcohol from your life. So it doesn’t remove you from life. It means being able to take alcohol or leave it without feeling deprived. It means to live peacefully, being able to enjoy a glass of wine without feeling guilty and without needing to finish the bottle. With Science on our side will shatter your past patterns and eliminate your excuses. Changing your relationship with alcohol is possible. I’m here to help you do it. Let’s start now. Well, hello and welcome or welcome back to the alcohol minimalist podcast with me your host Molly Watts coming to you from well, if you can believe this. It was a snowing Oregon today. That’s right, right here in Portland. We had snow, sleet after like 60 degree days last week, just craziness. But they call it fall spring. That’s what it is when it was what it was last week, fall spring. And now we’re back to good old regular winter for a few more weeks. And so and that snow is unusual for us didn’t stick of course, that would be too much to hope for. How are you doing? I hope you’re having a great week, I have a special guest for us today on the podcast. I am joined by Colleen Cashman. And Colleen and I got connected. And once we started talking, I realized very quickly that not only do we both appreciate evidence based strategies using science, but we really are talking very much a lot about the same language. She is the host of the it’s not about the alcohol podcast. And she helps people helps women, retrain their brains to prefer a less is more approach to alcohol. That’s what she says sounds kind of familiar, right? Sounds a bit like being an alcohol minimalist. And we come from very different pathways. Her story, my story very different. So I think you’re really going to enjoy hearing our conversation and seeing how it can look different for different people and what it means to still do the work of becoming more emotionally resilient. And her verbiage she says being emotionally sober. So I think you’re gonna love this episode. I know I enjoyed talking to Colleen, I will link to her bio and everything in her free resources in the show notes. You can reach out to her directly if you have questions. Here is my conversation with Colleen Cashman. Good morning, Colleen, thank you so much for being on the alcohol, minimalist podcast, I am excited to have this conversation and share a little bit about you and the work that you do in terms of emotional sobriety. That is a phrase that I think more of us need to get familiar with. So welcome to the show. Thank you. It’s good to be here, Molly. So let’s talk first a little bit about your, your journey and kind of where emotional sobriety has has come from and how it relates to alcohol, because of course, you know, that’s we’re talking about that too. But I think the, the connection with our emotions is so important. And I know you agree with me, we agree on a lot. Let’s just get that right out there from the beginning. So let’s talk to me a little bit about your journey and where this where this term emotional sobriety kind of came for you? Well, as far as the term, I don’t think I invented it, you know, if you’ve Google emotional sobriety, I mean, I would love to take full credit for that. Like I also thought I invented health coaching as a term and then I googled it and turns out, that’s a thing and you can get certified. Didn’t know that. I was like, what would I call myself? Because I had written a book about nutrition and I didn’t want to be a teacher. I’m like, I think Coach coach would be good, who knew there was a whole industry of coaches. So my whole approach with alcohol is about teaching people that it’s not you it’s not alcohol that you crave. Your brain is not in an alcohol deficit. Any more than a headache is caused by an acetaminophen deficient See, right? We drink because we want a certain feeling. And I know for myself, the other component that came with alcohol, let’s use the big mean word addiction. The other component that came with that was just pure ignorance. There’s so many mixed messages. I have a master’s degree in nutrition. And I didn’t know that alcohol is addictive. I mean, I knew there’s such thing as alcoholics. But that AAA mentality, whether you’ve ever been to a or not, we have a perception in our society that there’s normal drinkers, people who can handle it. And then there’s people that are alcoholics. And I had drank for years normally, and enjoyed it and had no problems. I mean, I fell out of a few porta potties in college, but that’s how I perceived normal to be you know, drinking is a rite of passage in college. So I came into a full blown addiction, very ignorantly I had no idea. So tell me about that. And about the I mean, so you’re using the term, so I’m just gonna go with that. But full blown addiction. What did that look like for you? What that looks like, for me was that I couldn’t not drink, or I didn’t think that I could. I needed alcohol every single day, I hid how much I was drinking, you know, and to be specific, there. Alcohol, it does cause addiction, obviously, in the brain. And that’s a thing. But that’s like the smallest component. Alcohol Use Disorder is actually a thinking problem, where bottom line is, you’re using more alcohol than you think you should. So you might have alcohol use disorder, because you think you should be sober, and you drink two glasses of wine a week. Whereas for a long time, I didn’t have alcohol use disorder. And I was killing a bottle of wine a night. I thought I was doing it right. Like, this is amazing. Life is good. I didn’t have yet because I didn’t understand how alcohol affects mental health. I didn’t have the depressive effects. You know, I was drinking a bottle of wine. I wasn’t driving, I was taking care of my kids. I was teaching hot yoga and running marathons and doing all the things. So I wasn’t in my head about it. It wasn’t until I realized, Oh, I’m drinking more than everybody else. And that’s not good. But I was unable to self correct. And so what do we do we hide, we hide in shame. Because if I would have admitted, this is getting a little sketchy. Well, in our culture, there’s one answer, do not pass, go do not collect $200 you’re an alcoholic, go directly to a meet your sponsor, get the big book, sway your leverage, drink again, and start apologizing to all your people in your life. Like, that’s what they claim your powerless. Right? And be and it’s a permanent, lifelong disease, like so we we avoid that. And I avoided that for years and just managed my drinking problem. But inside my head, it’s it felt like I had to just plan my day around it. You know, the kids said, Mom, can you do football game, you know, driving us around on Friday night, I’d be like, well, I will drive you there. But I’m not going to pick you up. I wouldn’t make plans real early in the morning. You know, so I was I was managing my life around alcohol as much as I wouldn’t have wanted to admit it. Alcohol was one of my biggest priorities. You know, I loved my kids. And I would have said I would have died for them. But I couldn’t not drink in an evening. So I just, and that’s a that’s a frog sitting in cold water with the heat boiling up, you know, I look back at phases. And I can remember when I switched from needing a reason to drink, to needing a reason to not drink. Like I used to think, Oh, well, it’s girls night out. It’s date night, it’s the holidays. And then I remember there was a shift in time when I need I was like, Well, I don’t have to drive today. Or I’m done driving for the day so I can have a drink. So then it became I needed a good reason to not drink. And that’s super important what you just said there and I hope folks, I really want you to hear that. Right? Because I talk about that in in my book I talk about in the work that I’ve done for people because we get so fixated on the physical dependence. We don’t separate from the psychological dependence. And most people, you know, the studies show, nine out of 10 people do not have a physical dependence on alcohol, but most of us who are misusing alcohol, create a psychological dependence on it. Right? And just exactly what you’re talking about going from the just looking forward to going out and having alcohol as to then needing a reason to not drink which you know, and that’s Yeah, so I love that you shared that. Keep going tell me about where the where the epiphany came like, you know, not only is this different but I really gotta do something about this. What about it? So I’m needing a reason to not drink crashed and burned as a strategy for me about five weeks into COVID. Because now I had no, right yeah, no, I’m on the bowling the bowling alley, there was nothing to keep me on. And of course, we’re blasted on social media, you know, the big alcohol companies moved the needle in terms of social norms. So because they wanted us to drink at home, whereas before, you know, drinking at home was a little bit like, oh, you might need to see somebody about that. And so all of a sudden, you know, they’re like, stay home, and let’s drink through it. And I was like, cheers. We’ll deliver it to you. Right? It’s an essential service. This is amazing. And it was actually to speak to that. It was when I went through the drive thru at the essential service tent of the alcohol liquor store to pick up another two mega handles of Grey Goose vodka. And I had just been there five days before for two big mega handles. And I thought, I can’t even pretend I’m having a party. Usually Patty just thinks I have parties all the time. And Patty’s just passing out this vodka. She’s, like, oh, shit, what’s going on here. And so that was, that was the week that I decided to quit drinking. That was one of the epiphanies for me is I can’t even pretend. Then, of course, the COVID stress, I’m trying to homeschool manage my teenagers, my husband’s gone all the time, finances, business, everything’s crashing, happy hours getting earlier and earlier, waking up and functioning is getting later and later. And I woke up one day and I was like, I I can’t keep doing this. And my strategy for hangovers. Of course, we all had them, you know, start with the by zine and the supplements, and I would go sweat it out. So I was out for a run. And about six miles in my hand, did not discuss this with me, my hand just googled the AAA hotline and called and said, I need help. I’m not in any danger. Don’t send them the EMS, but I need help. And so within three minutes, because it was COVID online, I was in an online a meeting. And I began what in the old terms I would say was my day one, this is my day one, and I had some support and help. And so I entered sobriety. Under the contract of well, I’m an alcoholic, and I’m going to need to work the steps. And I can never drink again, I need to change my entire life. And so I would say in before that, that was my day that I made the turn. But actually it was about 18 months later, when I’m perfectly sober. Because I’m a perfectionist, and I am all in 100% I’m all or nothing. So I’m perfectly sober. I’m leading the sober meetings, I’m doing all the things like now there really isn’t anything in my life that I can say I should probably change like, I’m dialed in, I’m doing all of it. And yet, I’m horribly depressed. I still felt hung over. My motivation had taken a crash and burn because so much of my motivation prior was tied to alcohol. I needed to prove I didn’t drink too much last night, I needed to earn my drink tickets for tonight, I needed to run off the hangover, I needed to do all the things. And so when I removed that I suffered what I now loosely, we can apply this term post acute withdrawal syndrome. My dopamine was in a severe deficit. And I the only thing I knew to do was try to behave my way back to perfectionism. I did that for 18 months, only to realize I still felt hungover, and I didn’t want to go back to drinking. But I felt like I was in Purgatory. And that’s when it I started doing more research. And I learned that, you know, this is a mental health issue. And the real problem honestly was my mindset, the all or nothing mindset and chasing the carrot and not knowing how to manage my emotions, and always trying to control my external environment, check all the boxes and relying on that for my my sense of connection and my purpose and just crashed and burned again 18 months into sobriety. Wow. Well, I love I mean, I’m sorry that that happened. And I’m also really glad that it did because it’s it it awoke something in you and now you’re able to have this new conversation with me, which I think is so incredibly important and important for so many reasons because I’m sure you hear it too with your clients. I have people ask me all the time is it really possible to drink is it possible to moderate is Is it possible, I say minimize I don’t moderate, I minimize because really just, as you well know, as a nutritionist, as somebody who’s got, you know, a scientific background, there is absolutely no scientific, nutritional, positive health benefit that we can delude ourselves into thinking, when we’re choosing to include alcohol in our lives, the only way that it is, if we’re going to do it, we need to be very go in with our eyes wide open. So there’s that aspect of it. But the most important part is the why behind people are drinking. And that is everything that you’re talking about, and nothing that that AAA, you know, trains you for, because they only care about you not doing the action of drinking. So as long as you’re not doing the action of drinking, you’re winning, except there are so many people that that come through. They they don’t they aren’t. They feel powerless. They do not feel just as you said, so emotional sobriety. Let’s talk about that. 18 months after, you know, and you’re and you’re completely alcohol free at that point. And it’s not Shangri La. It’s not perfect. It isn’t it hasn’t answered all the questions. You’re doing it all. You’re the poster child. They’re like, yes, we’ve got this lady. She’s great. She’s, she’s, she’s sober. She’s, she’s, you know, smart. She looks good up there talking. And yet, inside you’re like, huh, doesn’t really feel that great. Yeah. So again, I never thought about going back to drinking. I was fully committed. You know, just like when I woke up vegan, you know, a no turning back, I’ll take supplements, it’s fine. But the story that that shifted, that cracked my reality that helped me see a glitch in the matrix, if you will. I was it was Christmas time, my brother who’s three years younger than me, we’re sitting on the couch at my parents. My dad says, Hey, Paulo, you want a glass of wine? And Paul’s like, No, I’m not drinking right now. And as the sober community representative of the family, I was like, Oh, what did you do to get like a D? Why Molly tell you, you’re gonna divorce like you’re not drinking, tell me I was like, what do you do wrong? And he looked at me. And I had a flushed stressed response. Because he he challenged my identity as this sober person. And he goes, I’m saying no, or taking a break from alcohol does not mean you have a problem. dipshit like, you’re the only one that’s that’s that’s identifying as alcohol is, as with alcohol. And that’s when I realized, Oh, my God, this is a story. This is a game and I just switch teams. I’ve gone from Team drinker, to Team sobriety, and I’m wearing the cheerleader. And but the same thing, we the result is the same, I can’t trust myself, and my whole world. And identity is revolving around a substance that’s in the kitchen. And in that moment, I realized I could tell myself a different story about where I’ve been, and where I want to go and who I am. And that was the moment, I already had some tools with emotional sobriety, if you will. But those tools allowed me to see oh, this is just a story, the only thing that exists is the present moment. And the future is a blank slate, I don’t have to keep carrying these bags of drinking. And so it was about six months later, that I reintroduced alcohol. And that’s a whole separate topic. And I’m happy to discuss the process of that, because it’s very important. And that’s what’s missing from the sober community. There’s a lot of mixed messages, you know, you’ve got the AAA crowd, but now you’ve got all these online coaches, I was one of them, you know, saying you don’t have to identify as an alcoholic or promise you don’t ever have to drink again. But the mixed messages, but if you want to, then you should fix that desire. Like there’s something wrong with them, basically. Now, it’s non drinkers with a zero tolerance for poison. And so there’s no through line, like what happens to all these people. After eight weeks of sobriety, or three months of sobriety, or a year or three years, like I did, there’s no roadmap for how to drop the story, and go back to living from the inside out, making the best decisions you can, whether it’s with alcohol, or birthday cake, or McDonald’s or whatever, like we live in the world. And so that is that is the evolution that then I took. And there’s also a lot of science, which I’m happy to start quoting studies and statistics, but there’s also a lot of science that shows you know, 50% of people who end up in the weeds let’s call it alcohol, let’s call it psychological dependence, whatever. 50% of people returned to moderate drinking without returning to dependence Addiction. So that’s the whole population. But nobody’s talking about that. Because why don’t you declare yourself sober, you’ve gotten married to an identity, it’s really interesting because I do have a lot of people that come into my work and come from the background of AAA come from that, and I call it programming, right? And so that programming gets into our brains, they hold on to those stories. And those stories are very hard for them to, they have to do the work of challenging those stories. Or it’s an it doesn’t matter whether we’re talking about whether or not they ever include alcohol in their lives or not. It’s the absolute thinking, it’s the black and the white, the good and the bad, the right and the wrong, which is really the morality of drinking that we, you know, we tend to place it on on alcohol too, which is different than, you know, the decisions that we’re making about, well, maybe not birthday cake, we got a lot of shame about diet, too. But I mean, you know what I mean that there’s there’s not necessarily as much recovery regarding food as there is around alcohol. But this construct of how to not come back to be able to include alcohol in your life, but be able to come back to that you are becoming someone who allows their emotions and really is in touch with right making those decisions in our lives, that that are based on our overall well being and really where we want to be and being able to control how we feel. Just a quick break to talk with you more about Sunnyside Did you know that Sunnyside uses science to help you reach your goals? By focusing on three scientifically proven superpowers that you have. Number one, the power of pre commitment each week, you set an intention for the week ahead. That includes a tracking goal, a drink goal, and possibly a dry day goal. Number two, the power of conscious interference. You’ll learn the habit of tracking each day as soon as you finish it, which creates a mindful pause before you start the next day. And number three positivity. We know that this is a big step that can be tough at times. Right. And that’s why Sunnyside offers coaching through SMS and email to give you support advice and motivation, you can check out a free 15 day trial at www.sunnyside.co/molly. That’s www.sunnyside.co/molly. I love what you’re talking about because it parallels what I talked about in terms of the what I call the behavior map results cycle, I looked at some one of your tools and the idea of basically being able to have agency in our own lives, we can’t always determine the circumstances of our lives, those facts, those neutral things in our world, we get to decide how we feel about them, how we think about them, and how we think about them is largely going to influence how we feel. And I don’t know about you, but it was not until I was middle aged and did a lot and worked on this that I realized I was running around constantly at the effect of my life constantly, like I would have told you like, like, I always say I used to be like the most dramatic person, you know, like, I have four kids like Hello, right? I mean, I mean, that was my thought process like, hello, doesn’t it make sense that I’m stressed out in my mind? And I’m like, You know what I mean? And instead of like, understanding Oh, actually, for kids does not equal stress for kids equals your family and you get to choose if you are making them equal stress. And once I understood that, and once I realized how much agency and that only I got to decide the narrative of my life and how I was feeling was dependent upon everything that I was going out, you know, everything that I was saying in my brain, I was like, Oh, wow, wow, I really need to I need to do that. Yeah, yeah. What I there’s two levels that I see. And that is the narrative of that’s going on in your brain, the story you’re telling yourself the thoughts that are creating the feelings. But the deeper layer is your reaction to your feelings I shouldn’t be feeling this way. And that’s where what I love is it’s not just change and start thinking positive things, but it’s actually allowing the whole truth to be there. And as you said, taking radical ownership. You can’t change your emotions, but you can change how you respond to your emotions. And you can learn how to, as you said, not live in the effect of all that things that are happening around you and that you can’t control. But instead of, to me emotional sobriety is realizing you can choose how to cause your own happiness. And to me, this isn’t about where you are in life or what you’re dealing with, it’s about the direction you’re facing. So when I work with women, they come in, they’re resenting their husband, because he’s never home, or she works too. But he’s not helping kids or ADHD diagnosis, and just all of the things and they’re resentful, and how have they been coping with that they’ve been trading their opinions or boundaries for drink tickets, because I just want to be nice and go along and have a drink. And so over time, they’re taking less and less care of themselves, and to the point where they just kind of lose who they are and what they need and get absorbed, to realizing that they have to start planning to take care of themselves today, tomorrow, how do you want to feel in a year, and let’s reverse engineer that into 365 steps. So to me emotional sobriety is not just realizing you’re telling yourself a story, but to project into the future, the story you want in a year, and start writing it today before it’s true. Because it will be true, if you take the tiny little actions, the mistake all of us perfectionists make is to think we’re gonna wake up one day, and all the motivation, we’re gonna do the thing. And it’s like, no, the person that you want to be you have to you just practice being her every day. And some days, you nail it for an hour or two and other days, you know, it’s you don’t and other days, it’s it’s all good all day long. And it’s just practicing, understanding that you’re causing your own happiness, and doing the hard thing in the moment to make sure tomorrow’s better. Yeah, I agree. 100% The, the thing that I think is so important about that is, well, a couple of things. Actually. Emotional sobriety also, I believe, is an I would, I assume you’ll agree is about allowing, being able realizing that we have the capacity to allow all of our emotions to be there, we can handle our emotions we can handle big feelings were so many of us, we start off in, you know, we just were afraid of negative what we would call negative emotion, we do not want to have to process stress, grief, unhappiness, boredom, you name it, whatever you want to call those negative anxiety, negative type emotions. And I think a part of becoming more emotionally resilient, becoming more emotionally sober is the capacity to allow negative emotion to be there without feeling like we have to change it necessarily without feeling like we have to drink over it or, you know, replace it or slap on a positive thought and start feeling better. I always taught people about like, you know, this isn’t about changing, you’re changing the perspective of, you know, people will say, Well, I can’t I can’t think that way, because it’s not true. Well, it is true from a certain perspective, right? You got to change where you’re standing. That’s one of my favorite questions. What else is true? I asked him what else is true? Because the, the the truth is, is largely just determined, by the way that we’re looking at something. Right? So I teach truth, authentic, real truth. The only real truth is an experience in this moment. That’s the truth. The end, you don’t need words to explain truth, where we mistake truth isn’t truth is an idea. And it’s right or it’s wrong. And we don’t make we’re not aware that what we thought yesterday, yesterday’s truth is tomorrow’s bullshit. And we get emotionally attached to ideas that worked for us or were true. But it’s never the whole story. Because the same man never stands in the same river twice. Like the man is always changing. The river is always changing, your truth is always changing. Sometimes you’re happy to see your mother in law. And other times, you’re really not because it’s not a good time. And we try to boil down our lives into, you know, marketing sentences about who we are as a person, and the truth that that we decided that worked for us in a single moment. And the more we cling to those ideas, the more we are required to disconnect from the truth of the experience in this moment, and then we can’t process it. That’s where it gets stuck. And that’s where, you know, that’s where we get emotionally inflamed, where what’s really important to do is not not attached to any given truth and allow the truth. Today, I hate my kids. I hate being a mother, like, allow that. That doesn’t mean anything about you. It’s just the moment and the more you resist it, the more it persists, and then it goes subconscious and then pretty soon, you know other things. You’re going on, but just allowing that you’re a whole person. Like I think of our personalities is like a song, you might play on the piano and you’re only hitting certain notes and certain chords. The truth is, you’re the piano with all the chords like all of the chords can be struck at any time. But we get so attached to who we think we are, that when there’s an uncomfortable when there’s a note of dissonance, we have to judge that or pretend that instead of just letting it resonate, and moving on, yeah, interesting. I love I mean that, like I said, we talk the same, we talk about the same stuff, we talk about it in slightly different languages. So I’m sure that that my listener is like, Oh, this is really interesting. It’s interesting to me, folks, I’m sure it’s interesting to you, too. So let’s talk a little bit about that. The need to or the feeling of wanting to change how we who we are, or how we are feeling, because you mentioned something like the the idea of this is just who I am, and the personality and you know, lots of chords, one of the things I hear from people, and I help them see is a lot of self limiting type beliefs, right? We hold on to stories and ideas that we have about ourselves, and like, this is just who I am. I always like yeah, that’s the if the story is no longer serving you, then we don’t need to keep holding on to it and dragging that person with us into the future. The past only exists today. And what I think about it, right? I don’t have to, I don’t have to look back, I can look backwards in a different way. And that allows me to be somebody completely different today. So talk to me about self limiting beliefs, and how those may have been there for you, as you were coming out of, you know, coming into this emotional sobriety kind of wake up. Well, with my emotional sobriety wake up, I realized that I get to decide who I am, and that it’s normal to change. So one, if I want to be a person who doesn’t change, I get to do that. That’s my choice. But when I realized specifically with alcohol, and then I’ll speak to the broader context, but specifically with alcohol, I realized that I had gone from a person who thought, Well, why would anybody have one glass of wine, that’s a waste of calories and a false start on your butts. Like, that’s just dumb. Three years later, I was like, you know, what, I, I have so much evidence in my life that I am a less is more person, that I’m a one and done person with so many things. So I noticed without having done on purpose, I noticed that my identity a change. Now I teach people that you are able to change your identity on your own, you can be who you want to, there’s nothing about yourself that you have to accept, of course, except maybe that you only have two legs, and you can’t actually fly. But in terms of personality, our personality is just an emotional reaction that we’ve repeated over and over that became a mood. And then extended moods become personalities. And then they they interplay with our environment where we get rewarded or punished for that, like our, we’re constantly evolving. And again, we just get attached to ideas about who we are, which tends to become a self fulfilling prophecy. Where I help people break this open is to establish your true spirit identity as like the one who hears your thoughts. You’re not the you are not your thoughts. You’re the listener of your thoughts. And you can learn with mindfulness to watch your mind. And to shift your identity from in any given moment, the woman who is stressed hungover, overwhelmed, pissed off, to shift your identity from being her, you know, anxious, depressed, all of the things that we bring to the one who is taking care of the woman who is experiencing those emotions or those difficulties, and change our relationship with our body. That is what broke open. The idea of self care for me is to apply self care the term to what my body needs in this moment. I used to think self care was like Prosecco and pedicures and a bag of cash. That’s what I need. But now I understand. It’s like, no, no, what does my body need to regulate my nervous system? Do I need more stimulation or less more food or less? And so that is what gives me the motivation to do hard things on my own behalf. I do it all the time for my people. If my kids need something, you know, I will give them a kidney I will sacrifice I will. I will go the distance for people that I love. And that is now how I am able to apply that to myself by seeing myself as the person taking care of the body. whose name is Colleen? And this is her list of troubles today, what does she need? And how can I help her instead of identifying as my problem. And that gives me the perspective shift, I need to step out of the problem and just manage the logistics of it. Love that. So okay, so let’s talk about that. That’s kind of the somatic healing kind of part of your work. And talk to me. And, of course, you bring this wonderful nutrition background. So talk to me about self care, and what that looks like, in terms of just like you just said, like, how, how do you prioritize your self care? And because at the end of the day, we got to take care of our brains, we got to take care of our bodies. That’s how we become more resilient, healthy, you know, all of it, it all comes it all. Yeah, joins together, right? So talk to me about that. Well, the first step, and I actually teach seven core principles, we’ll wait into about three of them. The first step is the awareness that you are dealing with an internal problem, I have an emotional ownership statement, that is a fill in the blank, blank is not the problem. My thoughts and feelings about blank are the problem, you have to diagnose the problem properly. First, you have to pull out of whatever story you’re telling yourself about why you’re stressed. And here’s the litmus test, if you have time to think, then you are dealing with a thinking problem. That’s your primary problem to solve is regulating your emotions first. So the first thing is understanding the there’s an awareness of what’s going on in the world, or even in your body, this counts versus what’s happening in your mind. So you have to be able to toggle between the story from the fact right, yeah, facts from fiction fact, from what you’re making the facts mean, yeah, also that, then the second thing is always nervous system regulation, you cannot change your mind or solve problems from a creative, abundant mindset. In a state of stress. Biologically, it’s not possible as a stress response, we have myopic, catastrophic thinking, instant gratification, you know, very, very hyper aroused things. So our stress response must be cleared, completed, prior to going back into whatever story it is, that’s pissing us off. And so nervous system regulation is present moment awareness. And the analogy I use is, if you’ve ever driven a stick shift, a manual car, there’s the RPMs that you have to pay attention to. And when the RPMs get too high, you shift into neutral or you downshift, you push into the clutch, or you let out the tension gas or brake, like all of these things are kind of you got to watch the needle on your RPMs I think of that is like in your nervous system, the dial on your anxiety meter or your stress response, or whatever it is, and it’s and so just being aware that, oh, I am having a stress response. And that that needs to be I need to put the fire out before I use the wrong tools to solve this problem, such as alcohol or codependent, you know, behavior tactics or whatever manipulation we can do to make this stop, you know, and so nervous system regulation is then just breathing. And there’s 1000 tools, there’s 1000 tools, but having a felt sense, instead of thinking about it, the mistake most of us make is that we think we’re feeling our feelings, because we’re thinking about them. But actually, the felt sense is no you have to feel you have to feel that energy, you have to allow that energy. So like, you know, basic, one of the things I always start with is like go into your toes right now and wiggle them, okay, you’re feeling your toes, that’s what you have to start doing with your emotions. And by feeling and acknowledging them getting out of the story that’s inflaming them, that allows the energy to dissipate, and then bring your nervous system back to that sense of calm because everything looks better when you feel better. You know, everything you feel like you can solve problems, when you’re in that calm, you know, this parasympathetic nervous system is kicked back in, you got this one ball at a time, you know, you’re not telling yourself a catastrophic story. So those are the two things you know and awareness that this is a stress response. It’s happening in your mind and that and then moving into your body to calm the fire. Awesome. And what’s the third pillar? I think you were the why of eight. Yeah. Well, I guess the base the third basic one would then be to use some thought work to ask yourself What else could be true to ask yourself, Where do I want to be in a year or two? Ask yourself, you know, why am I asking a good question? Why am I feeling this way? Not a good question, how do I want to feel? It’s a better question. And what do I need to do to feel that way. So thought work, the cognitive work to, to bring your story into a place where now you can solve problems instead of just letting your brain create them. So those are the three basic foundations. Love it, love it. This, I, you know, you and I could probably have a conversation for hours and hours and be just totally two peas in a pod and happy and talking about not only emotional regulation and emotional sobriety and how alcohol fits into all of this, I want people to figure out, so tell them how they can learn more about you where they can find you. And because I love so many of the resources and tools, and the more people that you and I can both help together, the more people that are doing, you know, are feeling better, and hopefully, also changing their relationship with alcohol. So please, apps. Absolutely. So I would start with my podcast, it’s not about the alcohol. And you’re going to have an interview published on there too. So that’s the best way to know more about what I’m about. But I do have a website called recover with Colleen. And for example, I do a I’m, I’m sure you do some similar things. I do a masterclass that breaks down alcohol use disorder, and then the solution of emotional sobriety, you know, so that’s always free. I do that once a week. Just because I love doing that for people. And it’s a great resource. Yeah. Yeah. Wonderful. That is Yeah, so it’s not about the alcohol. Love the podcast title. And yes, people check it out, recover with Colleen. Colleen Cashman. Thank you so much for being here. This is just the tip of the iceberg, I think. And maybe you’ll come back again. We’ll have another conversation. I hope so. Molly, thank you so much for being here. Hey, thanks for listening to the alcohol minimalist podcast. Take something you learned from this week’s episode and put it into action. Changing your drinking habits and creating a peaceful relationship with alcohol is 100% possible. You can stop worrying, stop feeling guilty about over drinking and become someone who desires alcohol less. I work with people in three ways. You can learn about them over at www dot Molly watts.com/work with me, or better yet, reach out to me directly. It’s Molly at Molly watts.com. We’ll jump on a call and discuss what’s best for you. This podcast is really just the beginning of our conversation. Let’s keep it going.