Alcohol Recovery Without AA from Dr. Adi Jaffe
In this episode of the Alcohol Minimalist Podcast, host Molly Watts discusses strategies rooted in science and behavioral therapy. She emphasizes the importance of living guilt-free, enjoying a glass of wine without overindulging, and shattering past patterns. Molly introduces Sunnyside, a service designed to help people develop a healthier relationship with alcohol without pressure to quit or feel guilty. She challenges the conventional all-or-nothing approach, highlighting the need for a nuanced understanding of recovery. Molly addresses the limitations of traditional recovery methods and advocates for individualized approaches, emphasizing self-belief and personal growth. She encourages listeners to embrace moderation and find what works best for them, challenging societal norms and promoting self-empowerment.
Hey, it’s Molly from alcohol minimalist. What do you do in this October? I would love to have you join me in my more sober October challenge. What do I mean by more sober October, it simply means that we’re going to add in more alcohol free days than you currently been doing, whether that’s one or two or 31. It’s up to you, you get to set your own goal and that’s why it’s more sober October. You can check it out and learn more at get got sunnyside.co/molly It’s totally free. I’ve got prizes, I’m going to be going live every week to announce the prize winners, and it’s just going to be an awesome event. So I would love to have you join me. You can learn more at get.sunnyside.co/molly and you can get registered today. 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 habit. 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 a hot Oregon. Yes, folks we have joined the rest of the country here in Oregon this week. And we are in the midst of a very hot heatwave. Even myself, this is hot, hot hot for me. We topped out around 100 degrees yesterday. I think it’s supposed to be that way for the rest of the week. So you know this is not this is even for like I said I love the sun. Everybody that listens to this podcast knows I like it hot i like it warm. This is hot even for me and it’s obviously approaching unsafe levels for many people who don’t have air conditioning and the elderly and things like that. So if you are in that, that kind of heatwave where you are, I hope you are finding ways to stay cool. I hope you’re staying safe. And everyone here in Oregon. I hope you can find some relief from this hot weather we are having on to the show. I do have a prize winner this week for some alcohol minimalist swag. If you want to be entered into the drawing every other week for some alcohol, minimalist swag. All you got to do is leave a review of the podcast or the book on my book breaking the bottle legacy either one. This is a podcast review that someone actually left on Audible so you can do it over there. Even the podcast is on Audible and you can leave a review wherever you listen or wherever you read, I will find you enter you into the drawing. This week’s podcast review comes from Shannon who says life changing and supportive. This is such a helpful and hopeful podcast Molly’s approach is routed in science and behavioral therapy. It is a breath of fresh air for a topic that is too often approached with judgment and shame. She encourages the listener to take back their freedom and strength when it comes to making personal decisions in regards to alcohol consumption. If fire and brimstone, either or all or nothing approaches aren’t helping your bad drinking habits, Molly’s voice of reason and care is a comforting Guiding Light. Thank you. Thank you, Shannon, thank you very much. I appreciate those kind words and I am hopeful that everybody else. That’s what you get from this podcast. It’s exactly what I want you to hear. You have the power to change your relationship with alcohol inside your beautiful human brain. I also want to talk with you before we get into this week’s show about step one. Step one is my new offer that I am working on right now. It’s a self guided Hybrid Type course When I say hybrid, because it’s not just a course it didn’t involve some one on one coaching. And it’s really going to be something that I think is super effective, affordable, accessible for so many folks. And I’m very excited about it. I am finishing up, it’s hard work to get it all done, but I am super excited about it. And I would love to help you have access to it. So go to www dot Molly watts.com/step. One, those are two words all together, step one, one written out, oh, any. And get onto the mailing list, because for those people that are on that specific mailing list for the information on step one, you will receive a special offer that nobody else is going to have access to. So I hope you’ll check it out, especially if you are really struggling with like taking in all this information, but just not putting it into action. This is for you. So go check it out. www dot Molly watts.com/step. One, the first parts are coming in August. All right now we are on to this week’s summer content series. This is another episode in my summer content series. And this clip comes from Dr. Addy Jaffe. And this is also was a YouTube video. So you’ll hear him refer to watching things. And obviously I’m just taking the audio from it. But I had the pleasure of having Dr. Jaffe on the show. Last year, he has a thought leader, really powerful psychologist did a wonderful TED talk all about his struggles with addiction and where he came from. And now he helps people recover from true physical dependency on alcohol in his ignited recovery program, which I will link in the show notes. Dr. Jaffe and I talked about his book, The abstinence myth when he was on the show. And in this clip, he just basically talks about why abstinence and why not drinking ever again, is such a tough construct to apply to people who are having struggles with their drinking, and why this whole focus on just being abstinent not drinking really doesn’t solve any problems. And it’s actually problematic for many people who will never take action because they can never imagine not drinking again. And we do people a disservice when we put things into that all or nothing, this or that kind of modality. You will enjoy hearing Dr. Jaffe has thoughts on this. He is again, just a an inspiring man to listen to. I will also link his TEDx talk in the shownotes as well. And soon I will be back doing my own stuff. And I’m working on that as well. But I am enjoying a little bit of reprieve here during the summer as I’m trying to finish up step one and doing other things as well. So I hope you’re enjoying these summer content series as much as I am. I really grateful to all of my guests who have allowed me to share this content, including Dr. Addy Jaffe. Have a great week everyone, stay cool Oregonians and I will see you next time. Welcome to today with Dr. J, where I give you the guidance and tools to figure out what works for you in your recovery. My name is Dr. DE Jaffe and I’m here to help you live happier more purposefully. And without limits. I tend to ruffle some feathers for doing this. But I do away with the notion of once an addict, always an addict. Because I believe that anyone can be through addiction with the right mindset tools, support and education. Nothing can stand in your way to success. You don’t have to commit to anything but action. You don’t have to have anything but motivation. Whether you want to quit drink less or simply become more mindful around mental health and addiction. I’m here for you the topic is centered around some of the reactions that I got. And I get historically but I got in particular around the real we just released for ignited. And I don’t know how many of you are on social media but the real essentially it was me having a low alcohol Ken Bucha saying Wait, you’re saying I can recover from my alcohol addiction and still drink in moderation. And as usual when we go at people like that we get pretty strong opinions. And that’s I’m okay with it. I think there’s a lot left to be desired in the way we treat Yeah, alcohol and addiction in general now, but I wanted to bring it up here in particular, because I, every time this comes up for me, I realize, either you get the same sort of pushback when you tell people you want to deal with your fill in your addiction label, but you’re not ready to quit or you don’t want to quit. Either you get the push back, or you don’t talk to people about what you really want to do. Because you’re so foreshadowing, the push back and the shame and the kind of what the hell’s wrong with you language, you’ll end up getting the only thing you really are, quote, unquote, allowed to say to people, if you realize you have a problem, let’s say with alcohol, is I’m going to quit. I’m never going to drink again. It’s like unless you say that they’re looking at you like, Oh, you’re half assing, this stuff again. Great, thanks. Thanks a lot for even talking to me, right. And so I get this pushback all the time. And there are two main things that I really, I have to flip them for you. Because if you hold on to that way of looking at your attempt, it’s just it’s going to hamstring you it’s going to, it’s going to make it harder for you to feel good about the things that are showing you that you’re walking the right way, which will then make it more likely that you’ll get unmotivated, discouraged that you’ll feel ashamed or like a failure. And we all know hear over and over we talk about this. Every time those feelings hit us, it makes it that much harder to succeed. And something that let’s be honest, is not the easiest thing to succeed with already. Because we’re all coming with so much baggage and so much weight that we’re trying to take off of ourselves, it’s just adding to it does nothing good for us. And so the two points and some of you may already know this, some of you may not if you’ve been around me for a while that information might at least be the same. But we can have a different discussion about it here today is this look, the people out there can tell us the quitting is the only way to move forward all they want. But there are two things that they have to realize, first of all, they’re not the ones dealing with the problem. So that’s nice. Right? That’s a little bit like telling somebody who’s got dyslexia, come on, just read better. Cool. Thank you. For those of you who don’t have a problem reading, telling me what I’m supposed to do. Amen. Hallelujah to that. I mean, the world has had many, many difficulties of people who have no understanding of an actual problem, telling everybody else what they need to do. So that’s the, that’s for a huge portion of the people who speak up. And then the second portion of people are people who’ve gone through recovery themselves. And most of the time when people speak up, it’s people who’ve only been able to find recovery themselves through complete abstinence, which is great for those people. But they make up a tiny percentage of the people who struggle with drugs and alcohol, a tiny percentage, like, five, seven, if you get incredibly generous with the numbers, maybe up to 15% of the people who struggle with drugs and alcohol. f4, quote, unquote, addiction level, which used to be called dependence in the substance use disorder category, only about up to 15% of people find long term recovery that way, and then those people look back and they make the mistake of thinking, well, this worked for me, this must be the way for everybody else. Now. I get it. But the reality, let’s just be really, really clear. The reality of alcohol use problems is that about 75 to 80% of people who struggle with alcohol at one point in their life struggle for a relatively limited amount of time, and then end up not struggling again, but 80% of people now, some of them go completely abstinent, and some of them go back to drinking in moderation. But the statistics are very different. When you look at everybody who struggles with alcohol versus the people end up successful in a, so I just want to be really clear about that difference. And the difference is this. Once somebody has tried a bunch of things, and they haven’t tried, well, we’re doing but they tried a bunch of things in moderation didn’t work for them, and they commit to lifelong abstinence. Abstinence is nice, it is a very safe option about drinking, it’s very safe, especially around heavier drug use, right? It’s a safe option. It feels safe to everybody around. Why because your odds of overdose go down your odds of drinking and driving go down, your odds of blacking out goes to go to zero if you don’t drink at all, I get it. But here’s what they all forget is 90% of people who need help will absolutely not touch that version of recovery with a 10 foot pole. And the mistake that everybody keeps making. And the mistake that I think a lot of people have probably made for you in your life is that those other 90% of people are failures that they screw up. And that’s not true. Most of them do really well. It just they never recover in AAA. And so the traditional addiction system doesn’t see them. And because they don’t see them, they just make these conjectures about what happens in their life. They just assume well, they must be like us, but there’s nothing that says that you have to be like that. Hey everyone, just a quick break in the show to talk with you about Sunnyside. Now you’ve heard me talk about Sunnyside on the show before. I’ve had Nick and in the founders here as my guests. I am just so impressed with them they are deeply mission driven. They are building a service to help millions of people create a healthier relationship with alcohol with no pressure to quit or feel guilty. So you know, they are very aligned with everything I talk about here at alcohol minimalist. I wanted to share with you some thoughts and comments made by people in my group and my clients who use Sunnyside. I checked it out and was pleasantly surprised. I have used a few tracking apps and despise to them. But the support the daily check ins and the plan Yes, the plan. I signed up for three months yesterday and actually looked forward to the check in today. I have no doubt this tool is a step forward for me. I just want to thank you to everyone who recommended Sunnyside in this group and all of your advice throughout, I’m having the best start to a week of moderating Since I fell off the wagon in January, you work the plan, and it works. Thank you everyone. Now you don’t have to take my word for it, you don’t have to take their word for it, I want you to check it out for yourself, go to www.sunnyside.co/minimalist to get started on a free trial today. There are people in this room right now who have both experienced themselves substantial reductions in their use, to the point of essentially close to having no problem with the substance that they came in here for one of the major problems being the shame around the fact that they’re not fully abstinent like that’s one of the last remaining pieces. And then the vast majority of people who’ve been here long enough, like at least a few months, have had this experience, which is reductions and then return a little bit and then reductions and go back. And, and to me that’s life, like, what we have to do is we have to get better at controlling the ups and controlling the downs and and creating kind of a new normal for ourselves in life. And that’s the place to me where the all or nothing black and white failure success thinking completely destroys our chances. And I’ve said this a million times, I will say it a million times more. But there is nowhere else in life that I know where you can have massive improvement and be considered failure. Right? My one of my son’s struggles in math a little bit. And the idea that if he got like an eight out of 10, or six out of 10, I would consider this that the same as a zero out of 10 on a quiz or an assignment is inconceivable, I would never say to him, Well, you didn’t get a 10. So you obviously fail this test, I would doubt that will never come out of my mouth. But so many people sitting here right now have had exactly that experience happen. And to think that that does anything but destroy your ability and your belief in yourself to be able to get to your ultimate goal. Even if your ultimate goal is abstinence, right? Some people a very small number of people and around alcohol, it’s actually unsafe, go from drinking a fifth that day to drinking nothing daily. It happens, we’re absolutely talking single digit numbers. So for everybody else, that’s not the story, which means there were moderation steps along the way, there were reduction steps along the way. And what I want each and every one of you to hold like at the deepest core level of your being is a day where you drank one drink less than you normally drank is success. The day you drank half a drink less than what you normally drink is a success. And the reason I can prove that to you is if you do that, do that a handful of times in your life, you will get where you’re going anyway. But if you think to yourself, oh shit, I normally drink 12 drinks. And today I drank 10. So I’m still a failure. Getting to nine doesn’t feel like success. And getting to eight doesn’t feel like success. And seven and six and five and four and three and two and one and zero. But if you’re going to have to make your way through that journey, the first place you have to do the work is in here because everybody else can talk shit all they want, it’s not about them. It’s about you getting to a life that you are satisfied. Anything that helps with the drinking and helps you feel better is working. Put that in your quiver and keep walking forward. It doesn’t have to get you to abstinence, it just has to get you to better. And you do that step by step by step life will improve. And at some point, it may prove so much you’re drinking moderately and you’re happy and life is good and you don’t need to go cut down. Some of the people on here are what I like to call them ignited abstinent. And that’s like, I mostly don’t drink but then sometimes I’ll go somewhere, I’ll have an event or I’ll go to a dinner and I’ll have a glass of wine. I love that version of apps. And that’s great. Like, I know people that have no alcohol in their house, they just don’t drink at home. And then if they go out to dinner, they might have a drink. So you have to figure out the system that works for you. And just remember that every time somebody out there some professionals are an anomaly in this context, but most of the time that people out there what they’re trying to tell you to do is what worked for them, but you’re not the same person. You have a completely different I have a completely different experience a completely different problem than they had. genetics are different. Your trauma experience is different. Your psychology is different. Your environmental influence around you right now is different. Find the thing that works for you, and stick to your lane. Thanks for watching, and I hope you found the lessons helpful in your recovery. Click below like, comment and subscribe. Plus, if you want to find out more about the work that we do at ignited Visit igntd.com for more. Thank you for listening to the alcohol minimalist podcast. This podcast is dedicated to helping you change your drinking habits and to create a peaceful relationship with alcohol. Use something you learned in today’s episode and apply it to your life this week. Transformation is possible you have the power to change your relationship with alcohol now, for more information, please visit me at www dot Molly watts.com