My Life Sucks — 10 Eye-Opening Reasons to Hire A Sober Life Coach

recovery Jul 29, 2022

Should I hire a sober coach? 5 Top Sober Coaches

MY LIFE SUCKS — 10 EYE-OPENING REASONS TO HIRE A SOBER LIFE COACH

Why Sober Coaching Matters

Written By: Lane Kennedy

Recovery from alcoholism is no joke; for me, it’s been a long time between cocktails at the time of this writing, 9341 days to be exact, but who’s counting?! While living in recovery from alcohol, drugs, and snickers bars can be challenging, overwhelming, and a real fuck you at times, it’s also incredibly generous considering how selfish someone with addiction and alcoholism can be.

Over the years of my recovery, I’ve seen this incredible movement supporting positive awareness of addiction, breaking the stigma of alcoholism, sobriety, people moving towards an alcohol-free lifestyle, and living in recovery—which is, in my opinion, fantastic! When I first found the sober path, it was stated over and over to be anonymous to “sit still and work with others,” “pass it on,“ and “in order to keep it, you give it away”. All of this was taken under the pretense that the care of my mental health and those of hundreds and thousands and millions of others who walk before me were all guided by true allies and the principle of altruism. {WHAT? HOW?}

There was no exchange of money for the teaching, mentoring, or what was being passed on to me. This is the true gift of Alcoholics Anonymous. The founders of Alcoholics Anonymous, Bill Wilson and Bob Smith, were steadfast in setting up an organization that was spiritual in nature, using principles of a variety of religious societies and or ideologies by Jung and Freud.

Principle: a fundamental truth or proposition that serves as the foundation for a system of belief or behavior or a chain of reasoning.

Spiritual: relating to or affecting the human spirit or soul instead of material or physical things.

As humans have continually evolved, the desire for understanding and knowing the true self has been written about and observed at Infinitum. People who suffer from alcoholism or addiction often find themselves seeking answers with the intensity of a rabid dog. I believe that we are seekers, through and through.

I will get to the Sober Coaching in just a minute; this article would not be complete without the following background information, so hang with me.

Let’s travel back in time for a minute; I’m only going to go back a couple of hundred years, but I want to share some relevant and essential references to support a better understanding of those afflicted with addiction.

Skipping back to the 1800s, we find the beginning of treatment centers. Of course, they don’t look like the treatment centers we have today, but they were treatment centers caring for our sick and feeble alcoholics.

Let’s move quickly to the 1900s, when people were hungry for a solution to the alcohol problem, we see a push in the Temperance movement, and the Oxford group began. Other religious societies attempt to help the poor, sick, and suffering alcoholics – but to little or no avail.

In 1935 Alcoholics Anonymous began a radical movement. This movement was catapulted by its founders, Bill Wilson and Dr. Bob Smith on the very basis of one drunk helping another by sharing spiritual principles. As decades have passed, the movement of the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous has blossomed into many areas of addiction, all being shared for free.

People were so desperate from 1948 through 1952 that they started having frontal lobotomies. Imagine being so desperate that you and your family sign off on removing part of your brain! Uhhh, that’s a hard NO!

During the 1950s, electric shock treatment came into play, which didn’t work out too well either.

In 1952 the American Medical Society defined alcoholism! Okay, finally, we are getting somewhere, but are we?

With increased societal challenges and population growth came the first contraceptive pill. The United States successfully detonated “Mike,” the world's first hydrogen bomb, and the world was rapidly changing. I think it’s fair to say that the “family” structures were breaking down, and with that, the rise of Halfway Houses began in 1958. Why do we need these Halfway Houses? Plain and simple, increase in consumption, messiness, and what do we do with these drunk, hungover, lazy people…? The Halfway House Association became a part of society.

In the years following 1964 through 1975, insurance companies began to reimburse alcoholism treatment! #winning

As humans have continually evolved, the desire for understanding and knowing the true self has been written about and observed at Infinitum. People who suffer from alcoholism or addiction often find themselves seeking answers with the intensity of a rabid dog. I believe that we are seekers, through and through.

First Lady, Betty Ford, sought treatment in 1982, and shortly after that, the Betty Ford Clinic began. Then we started seeing the famous frying pan and egg ads in 1987, which will never leave my memory; I never quite understood the comparison between an egg and my brain.

In late November of 1982, Johnny S. & Ray G. started Cocaine Anonymous in Hollywood, Ca. (I was lucky enough to meet Johnny while he was sober.) Oh, the 80s were fantastic and full technicolor. We see an uprising of people seeking to recover and wanting help.

In 1985-86 Rational Recovery opened its doors, which has no linkage to any spiritual path.

In 1987 the American medical association called all drug addiction a disease. Yeah finally!

In 1994 smart recovery began as a self-empowerment movement, and it still helps people today.

I’m also going to throw in two other organizations here, EST, which was created from the work of Werner Erhard. These workshops were four-day intense sessions of the EST training, which was based on a rigorous 60-hours of constant self-development. I can’t even imagine sitting around investigating myself in a room full of 200 people, listening with great intent on how to be a better person. Unfortunately, or fortunately, in 1984, EST fizzled out, and then in 1991, the Landmark Forum began from a protege who purchased licensing rights of Werner’s program.

Now having shared all of this information, I want to be clear that in some way, shape, or form, people have been paying for treatment, help, and support with alcoholism and addiction for a very long time.

Those who suffer from addiction pay financially, emotionally, physically, mentally, and spiritually. But unfortunately, the spirit and mental parts of recovery are what people miss and ignore! So, that’s where I focus professionally, this is where I see the most breakdown in the work I do, and, No, I’m not a sober coach. (I am certified to be a recovery coach but that’s not my concentration.)

The spiritual malady that a person in recovery faces is harsh, unsettling, and disrupts so many areas of life. I see this every day in the work I do as a mindfulness teacher and hypnotherapist. I will write another post about the spiritual malady in a future post and link it here.

Let me start with why having a sober coach is a MUST-have tool in today’s overwhelming, mommy wine time, anytime whisky delivery, and the opioid-drug-using world!

Face it, as humans, we want. We want what we want – when we want it – and with the age of the internet and having everything at our fingertips, including sex, drugs, and rock and roll, our lives have become about MORE.

More equals burnout and stress. Stress equals I want to check the F*ck out now, and if not now, soon!

In general, people live with an intense stress load, but it’s simply not sustainable for those in recovery. Living in a burnout crisis-stress-loop affects people in recovery every day, and I tend to say they’re a bit more susceptible to crossing a line of self-betrayal. My clients, mothers, corporate ladder climbers, Fortune executives, Wall Street Investors, teachers, accountants, and I dare not forget to mention my entrepreneurs – all struggle with maintaining a healthy, peaceful sober life! (Remember, alcoholism doesn’t care what your profession is, it only knows and cares that you need that job to pay for its consumption.)

When facing yourself, it is overwhelming to come to terms with the overconsumption of drugs, even if a doctor has prescribed them; it’s mind-blowing to consider you drink too much and do incomprehensible things that you’d rather forget. Yet, on the other hand, it’s hard to imagine that you’re still not quite right, even being sober, and you're cheating on your partner. But hey, you’re smart, you have two degrees, and intellectually you make things happen in life! So then, why is it that you have trouble asking for help?

SHAME. Yep, it’s that simple. Shame.

You may not recognize it, but it’s there, and it’s holding you back, burying you in a story that you will do better next time. You can control it… whatever IT means for you. (Again, this could be anything, from spending too much and having too many handbags to the mundane of too many cups of green tea!) The reality is once a person with “addiction” has crossed the line (and this line is some arbitrary line that every alcoholic or person with a substance abuse disorder crosses), game over!

I CREATED A PARTIAL LIST OF VARIOUS SUBSTANCES OR THINGS THAT A LOT OF ADDICTS THINK THEY HAVE CONTROL OVER, YET, NOT REALLY. IT’S THESE ITEMS THAT CAUSE THE SHAME AND STRESS LOOP THAT LEADS TO UNHAPPINESS AND PERHAPS RELAPSE:
  • SNEAKING AN EXTRA (FILL IN THE BLANK)
  • SLEEPING WITH SOMEONE ELSE'S PARTNER
  • POPCORN
  • DIET COKE
  • THE INTERNET
  • USING CBD WITH THC
  • CIGARETTES
  • CAKE
  • PEOPLE (PLEASING)
  • SOCIAL MEDIA
  • ICECREAM
  • CHIPS
  • VAPING
  • PORN
  • CREDIT CARD SPENDING
  • SHOES
  • GOING SHOPPING AT TARGET 
  • HIIT EXERCISE
  • GAMBLING
  • ENDURANCE COMPETITIONS
  • CBD DRINKS
  • SPARKLING WATER
  • SEX
  • DONUTS
  • DRIVING FAST
  • WORK
  • COFFEE
  • NETFLIX BINGE
  • HORSE RACES
  • MOVIE THEATER WATCHING
  • CONCERTS/MUSIC
  • PRESCRIPTION PILLS
  • XANAX
  • MARIJUANA
  • WEIGHTLOSS PILLS/DRINKS

PEOPLE IN RECOVERY NEED HELP; ALL THEY CAN GET — START RUNNING FOR IT NOW. 

Why am I screaming? Alcoholism is deadly, and earnestly, I don't believe that we live in a time when the Twelve Steps or a recovery program are enough. We live in a society where stress is the norm, high stress! We are just now heading out of a two-plus-year life sentence named COVID, our political environment is in disarray, our global footprint is worse day by day, a war is underway, and we humans are fragmenting every which way. So, YES, we all need help, like yesterday!

Knock knock.

Who’s there?

Your fabulous new best friend, your sober coach!

Now, remember this post is coming from someone who actually got sober and has lived in recovery for a looooong time, without coaching. I am not affiliated with any specific sober coach, although I have some favorites to share with you. I am sharing this with you as we all need HELP!

 

Top 10 Reasons To Hire A Coach

  1. CHEERLEADER WHEN YOU’RE F*CKED! A SOBER COACH IS YOUR CHEERLEADER ON THE GOOD DAYS AND BAD. THEY’RE NOT THERE TO COSIGN YOUR BULLSHIT AND ANY SHADY THINKING; THEY ARE CLEAR-HEADED AND TRAINED TO NOTICE ALCOHOLISM OR HOW PUNITIVE, CORROSIVE THINKING CHANGES YOUR BEHAVIOR.
  2. HONESTY. THEY ARE SUPPORTIVE AND HONEST. YOU MAY NOT LIKE THIS, BUT THE DISHONEST LIVING WILL HAVE YOU PICKING UP AGAIN AND AGAIN. HONESTY IS FOUNDATIONAL IN LIVING A CLEAN AND SOBER LIFE AND A LIFE OF RECOVERY. TRUTHFULNESS CAN ALSO KEEP YOU AWAY FROM THE ITEMS LISTED ABOVE THAT WE THINK WE CAN MANAGE.
  3. ORGANIZATION AND CLARITY! A SOBER COACH WILL HELP YOU PRIORITIZE YOUR LIFE. HELLO, WHAT DO I DO FIRST? WHAT DO I DO NEXT? WHAT DO I DO WHEN I NEED TO QUIT MY JOB? WHAT DO I DO WHEN MY KIDS SEE ALL MY BOTTLES? HOW DO I PAY BILLS ON TIME? YEP, A SOBER COACH WILL GUIDE YOU IN MANAGING YOUR CHAOS. A SOBER COACH WILL GUIDE YOU IN ANSWERING YOUR TOUGH QUESTIONS.
  4. HARM REDUCTION. WHEN THE SMALL SNEAKING, CONNIVING VOICE WHISPERS THAT MORE DIET COKE IS A GOOD IDEA AND CUTTING MIGHT RELIEVE THE PAIN, YOUR SOBER COACH IS THERE TO SUPPORT YOU WITH ACCOUNTABILITY IN HARM REDUCTION. IN ADDITION, THEY CAN BE THERE TO HELP YOU IN FINDING MEDICAL ASSISTANCE AND NAVIGATING THE MEDICAL SYSTEM, WHICH IS A NIGHTMARE WITHIN ITSELF!
  5. HOLISTIC PERSPECTIVE. SOME SOBER COACHES HAVE A HOLISTIC LIVING APPROACH THAT CAN SUPPORT YOUR BODY, MIND, AND SPIRIT. THEY CAN HELP CREATE A PATHWAY WITH YOU THAT SUPPORTS YOUR ENTIRE BEING, INCLUDING SLEEP SCHEDULES AND DIET/ NUTRIENT INFORMATION.
  6. CRISIS MANAGEMENT. LIFE IS MESSY, AND HOW DO YOU UNTANGLE IT WITH GRACE? A SOBER COACH LISTENS AND DISTILLS INFORMATION. IT'S OVERWHELMING WHEN YOU’RE IN CRISIS MODE, AND YOUR STRESS LOOPS MOVE TO THE NEXT LEVEL, DANGER ZONE. DIVORCE, HEALTH CHALLENGES, MOVING, JOB LOSS, LAWSUITS, AND TROUBLED FAMILY MATTERS QUALIFY YOU FOR EXTRA HANDHOLDING.
  7. MASSIVE CHANGE. YES, YOU CAN HAVE PLENTY OF CHANGE WITH A “SPONSOR,” A QUALIFIED THERAPIST, AND OR A PSYCHOLOGIST; THEY ARE A PART OF YOUR SOBER TEAM. BUT, IN ADDITION, YOUR SOBER COACH CHEERS YOU ON FOR YOUR MASSIVE LONG-LASTING CHANGE, AND USUALLY, THEY ARE MORE AVAILABLE OR HANDS-ON THAN THE OTHER PEOPLE WHO YOU MIGHT CONSIDER AS A PART OF YOUR RECOVERY TEAM, LIKE A DOCTOR OR THERAPIST.
  8. EMOTIONAL WELLNESS. HERE’S A BIG ONE, YOU’LL GAIN AND FEEL EMPATHY IN A NO-JUDGMENT ZONE—NO MORE SHAME. A SOBER COACH OFFERS YOU THE SPACE TO BE YOU, NO GUILT, NO COMPARISONS.
  9. LIFE SYSTEM. I KNOW I’VE MENTIONED THIS A BIT ALREADY, BUT I’M RETURNING TO IT AS IT’S THAT IMPORTANT; WHEN YOU WORK WITH A SOBER COACH, YOU BEGIN TO CREATE A LIFESTYLE SYSTEM THAT SUPPORTS YOUR OVERALL WELL-BEING AND ALCOHOL-FREE LIFESTYLE WITHOUT STRESS!
  10. YOU GET TO BETTER–FASTER. NOW I AM NOT ONE TO SAY THAT FASTER IS ALWAYS BETTER, BUT I DO SAY THAT WITH ADDICTION AND THE SHAME AND STRESS LOOP SPIRAL, THE QUICKER YOU CAN NEGATIVE THIS VOICE AND MANAGE IT, THE LESS DAMAGE WILL OCCUR. YOU’RE SOBER NOW, SO IT’S TIME TO LIVE YOUR BEST LIFE; IT’S TIME TO MOVE FORWARD. IT’S TIME TO SHOUT FROM THE ROOFTOP, THAT’S RIGHT, I HAVE A SOBER COACH, AND I LOVE HER!

 

Hiring a sober coach is worth every cent, but they must be qualified and have skin in the game. When I say skin, I’m talking about sober time. A sober coach with two years is probably not a good fit for someone who is a mother and has (or had) five years of recovery. For some, this may read like common sense, but I have had women find me and tell me of their experiences… they paid hundreds or thousands of dollars and didn’t receive the proper support because the coach who took them on wasn't ready. They weren’t a bad coach; they just didn’t know any better. And this, my friend, is where having time or skin in the game matters. Time takes time and the amazing two-year-old coach would not know or have the practical bandwidth and expertise of someone with 25+ years. It’s really that simple.

Coaches work hard. They die for you, seriously! They are there for you! Coaches who have time and are available will champion you to your best life; I promise—their experience, education, certifications, and licensing all matter. So when you’re looking for your sober coach, please be thorough.

And remember, just because you stopped drinking doesn't mean that your life is supposed to be all glossy and perfect. No, life is messy. What’s important is how you manage it and your mental health. Yes, putting down the drink helps; living alcohol-free is a game-changer, but your real recovery begins when you find a lifestyle plan that supports the daily chaos that life will serve you.

I don’t want you to chase those items from the earlier list. I want you out of the shame and stress loop; I want you to be free. Instead, I want you to seek relief by being mindful of your life and the choices that will impact you the most: pause, reflect, research, and then move steadily ahead with a mission to find a coach for yourself!

I believe in you. I hope this has been helpful; please feel free to reach out to any of the coaches listed below or me if you have questions or something you’d like to contribute to this post.

My Sober Coaches Pick

  • MICHELLE SMITH – HTTPS://WWW.RECOVERYISTHENEWBLACK.COM/
    SOBER SINCE NOVEMBER 24, 2016, HER RECOVERY PATH IS FOCUSED ON HONESTY, SELF-LOVE, AND FORGIVENESS. WORKING WITH MOTHERS IS HER SPECIALTY. SHE IS THE FOUNDER OF RECOVERY IS THE NEW BLACK.
  • MATTHEW TAUB – HTTPS://WWW.INSTAGRAM.COM/MATTHEWTAUB/?HL=EN
    LIVING IN LONG-TERM RECOVERY, DECEMBER 21ST, 2005. MATTHEW FOCUSES ON PHYSICAL WELLNESS, MENTAL HEALTH, AND BUILDING A RESILIENT MINDSET.
  • LORI MASSICOT – HTTPS://WWW.LORIMASSICOT.COM/
    LORI QUIT DRINKING ON AUGUST 11, 2013, AT FORTY-FIVE, IN THE THROES OF PERIMENOPAUSE, AND DECLARED (WHILE CRYING LIKE A BABY) THAT SHE WOULD DO WHATEVER IT TOOK NOT TO DRINK AGAIN. SHE IS THE MIDLIFE SOBRIETY COACH
  • TAMAR MEDFORD – HTTPS://WWW.YOURESOBERNOWWHAT.COM/
    SINCE OVERCOMING A 20-YEAR BATTLE WITH DRUG AND ALCOHOL ADDICTION, SHE NOW LIVES IN LONG-TERM RECOVERY, HER SOBER DATE IS JUNE 17TH 2012. SHE IS DEDICATED TO EMPOWERING PEOPLE IN RECOVERY THROUGH NEURO CHANGE SO THEY CAN MASTER THEIR MINDS, OVERCOME LIMITING BELIEFS AND CREATE A LIFE SO GOOD FOR THEMSELVES THAT THEY NEVER WANT TO GO BACK TO THEIR OLD WAY OF LIVING.
  • ARLINA ALLEN – HTTPS://WWW.SOBERLIFESCHOOL.COM/
    LIVING IN LONG-TERM RECOVERY WITH 27 YEARS OF PERSONAL RECOVERY, ARLINA BELIEVES THAT SOBRIETY STARTS WITH HEALTHY SELF-ESTEEM. HER COACHING FOCUSES ON SUPPORTING WOMEN IN RECOVERY WITH MULTIPLE COACHING TECHNIQUES, INCLUDING HYPNOSIS.
  • LANE KENNEDY – HTTPS://LANEKENNEDY.COM/
    I LIVE IN LONG-TERM RECOVERY FROM ALCOHOLISM; MY LAST DRINK WAS IN 1996. I FOCUS ON SUPPORTING AND CHANGING WOMEN’S SPIRITUAL AND MENTAL WELL-BEING THROUGH CONNECTED CALM LIFE, A PROGRAM I FOUNDED FOR WOMEN.

 

Listen here to get to know each of the coaches.

What is a sober coach? Are they necessary? - Connected Calm Life Podcast 

Source: https://lanekennedy.com/connected-calm-life-blog/should-i-hire-a-sober-coach

Check out the You're Sober! Now What? Podcast

With over 35 years of continuous sobriety Tamar Medford & Lane Kennedy teach sober women over 40 how to feel ten years younger, do what they love everyday and live their best lives. Discover how you can create your dream life through mindfulness, meditation, science and spirituality.

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