In episode 297 of the Elevation Recovery Podcast, Chris Scott and Matt Finch discuss strategies for overcoming the holiday season while recovering from alcohol and addiction.
With the pressure from advertisements, friends, and family, it can be difficult to not succumb to peer pressure. With these strategies such as sleep, nutrient repair, and so on, recovery can be maintained!
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Chris Scott: And so there's this sort of deferential reverence with which people approach just other people who do what everyone seems to do. I understand that because I had to confront that myself when I quit drinking. It's like, should I approach the social customs like drinking when you go to a restaurant, every time you turn on a movie people are drinking almost constantly. And that was something, I don't notice that anymore, but I did then because it bothered me. Do I approach that with that sort of deference and just the assumption that they're doing it right because everyone else is doing it? Or do I look at that mass conditioning and do I say, you know what, this is dumb and I'm not going to participate in it.
Matt Finch: Scientists have begun to explore the effects of CBD on inflammation and addictive behaviors. In a study from neuropsychopharmacology titled, Unique treatment potential of cannabidiol for the prevention of relapse to drug use: preclinical proof of principle, researchers found that alcoholic rats given a non THC version of CBD oil reduced their alcohol seeking behaviors and prevented high impulsivity often seen with alcohol withdrawal. A one week administration of CBD oil produced these effects for five months even though CBD itself left their systems after three days. And this is just one of the numerous studies pointing to potential benefits of using CBD for wellness.
For the complete guide to using CBD for alcohol withdrawal, visit tinyurl.com/fitrecoverycbd. Again, that's tinyurl.com/fitrecoverycbd. This is one of the most popular articles on Fit Recovery and in it you'll find a 15% off coupon code from cbdpure.com. And in that super popular article, there is really cool information on how to use CBD as well as the cbdpure.com brand, which if you order from [email protected] and enter the coupon code Fit Recovery, you can save 15% off your purchase. CBDPure benefits are superior taste, superior potency, 100% organic, third party tested, comes with free shipping, discreet shipping, a 90 day money backed policy used or unused. It ships to all 50 US states and it's the favorite brand of Chris Scott. To read Chris's report on CBD for alcohol withdrawal, that is tinyurl.com/fitrecoverycbd and enter coupon code Fit Recovery at cbdpure.com to save 15%.
Announcer: Thanks for tuning in to the Elevation Recovery podcast, your hub for addiction recovery strategies, hosted by Chris Scott and Matt Finch.
Matt Finch: Welcome to episode 297 of Elevation Recovery. My name's Matt Finch and I'm joined with my co-host and friend Chris Scott. We are just before this episode started talking how we started this podcast a few years ago. Now we're at almost episode 300 and it seems like we've talked about nearly every topic about alcohol and drug addiction recovery under the sun, even as obscure and novel. An alternative is barefoot walking on the surface of the earth and binaural beats, those sorts of novel things, all the way up to traditional, mainstream, aka lame stream, recovery type ideas of total abstinence, AA, and that type of thing. Today we're going to focus on something that is very timely and that is, number one, how to get through the holidays without drinking, without relapsing, without slipping, without going on a bender. There's all the social pressure.
Alcohol is totally celebrated and advertised and it's so ubiquitous, it's really correlated. A lot of us have been conditioned to associate with alcohol success and attractiveness and status and feelings of the good life. It's just all in the advertising and the marketing. So number one, how to get through the holidays, what are some strategies you could do for that? Number two, and we'll see how much we cover in this episode. We could always do a part two on the next week, but also inflation right now, at least in America, the inflation here is bad. I have been having to go to the bare bones supplement protocols of things like a multivitamin, calcium, magnesium, zinc, vitamin D and omegas and maybe a couple amino acids or less and electrolytes. So not really being able to afford many of us the types of supplements that we once used as well as groceries.
Where I shop at Sprouts, a lot of the foods are 30 to 50% more expensive. The other day I saw a loaf of organic San Francisco style sourdough bread for $9, a dozen pasture raised eggs for $8 and things are just getting more and more expensive. Gasoline is up. I love the AC when I drive, but even at times I have not used any AC to save gas, to stretch my money out further. And so we're dealing with multiple issues. There's chronic epidemic of people that are isolating, so they're missing out on connection. The pandemic lockdowns really conditioned a lot of people to have mild, moderate, or even severe agoraphobia. People aren't leaving the house as much, they're not connecting as much. A lot of people are dealing with poverty, dealing with struggles with inflation, having stressful work that they don't like and they're underpaid and underappreciated.
There's like this whole storm, more like a hurricane, things like unresolved mental health issues, lack of connection, lack of ability to afford the good healthy foods and supplements, resources like getting acupuncture or massage here and there. People are really struggling and there are lots of different strategies and resources that people can do to get discount supplements, what are the core nutrients and supplement brands that someone could take? What are the best ways to save money on food while remaining to eat healthily and getting through the holidays without the isolation, without the peer pressure or the unconscious need? I called it something funny on a coaching call the other day. It was like, the human adult conditioned need to have a drink in their hand at social gatherings. Everyone's got the drink, pretty much everyone's drinking alcohol.
This is very common, not across the board, but then there's this weird feeling and I remember it so vividly back when I was trying to quit drinking for so many years, unsuccessfully really. That need to, we feel more status when we have a drink, especially when we have a high status drink like a whiskey or for someone a wine, for other people their high status drink is scotch on the rocks or something. That comes down to the marketing, the advertising, the conditioning that our culture has been under. Okay, I'll rambled on too long. I'll shut up now. Good to see you again, Chris.
Chris Scott: Good to be back. It's crazy it took almost 300 episodes for me to have something interesting for people to look at behind me. I guess for a while I had, it was actually that window and during the day it's quite nice. I'm sure we'll do some episodes where we have the natural scenery, but for now we got my sauna, infrared sauna, which was my best investment of the early pandemic and I'm glad I bought it then because it would cost more now. And then the AssaultBike and then the cactus, it used to be taller but my dog knocked it over with her big butt unfortunately. It's about, I don't know, probably six or eight inches shorter than it used to be. But anyway, so it's really good to be back with you. It's been quite hectic for us, everyone on the Fit Recovery team trying to keep up with all the people who do need help.
And of course I think it is an important topic to try to help people or just give some abbreviated advice to some of the overwhelming and overlapping and intertwining problems that could make it very well seem like drinking is the only possible escape at the moment. I remember feeling like that too. I used to buy alcohol back when my salary in my 20s, my early career, I couldn't really justify it and yet the only way I could stop worrying about it seemed was to just buy more alcohol and drink. I'm not sure how effective it would've been to just remind me or point out to me, it's not that I couldn't do math, that I couldn't properly afford the alcohol. It didn't seem to matter. What seemed to matter was pushing the worry back and doing something that would occupy my time so that I didn't have to think about how depressing my life situation was or how stressful my life situation was.
And really for me, the issue was more stress than depression per se. I was pretty high functioning for most of the drinking until the very end. But I think it might be useful for some people to hear that my best stress reduction technique, which is not really a technique or a strategy, I guess you could call it that, it's very simple. In the last almost 10 years now that I've been on this new adventure beyond alcohol addiction, is simply to be proactive, to come up with a plan, to write it down. Preferably something that I can come up with in the morning when my mind is clear after a good night of sleep. I know that's hard. A lot of people are not getting a good night of sleep, but I know that even in my drinking years, there were some nights where I by some miracle would drink a little less and then I would sleep for nine hours and I'd wake up and it seemed, maybe that would come once every two weeks or something like that if I was lucky.
It would usually come on a weekend, but sometimes maybe during a weekday when I just got to bed early the night before somehow, without totally toxifying my entire system to the point that I felt like impending doom or calamity was about to drop on my head the next morning. Just a little bit of clear-minded space. It felt like on those days I had a choice. I could do something. It wasn't obvious that I would have a choice later in the day whether to drink or not, but it felt like there was space in which I could choose some response. Now I didn't have any strategies back then, I didn't know what to do. But being proactive is itself my stress reduction technique these days. If I'm feeling like I'm a little bit stir crazy in my condo or something's bothering me and my subconscious is keeping it to itself and I can't figure out what it is, usually just getting into a proactive zone the day after I've gotten a little bit more sleep than usual.
These days I tend to sleep pretty well, pretty deeply. That will fix a lot of the anxiety, which can often be the root cause for why people are drinking in the first place. If you combine that with nutrient repair, which of course is our MO on this podcast and in my course, Total Alcohol Recovery, and in our coaching programs with all of our awesome coaches at Fit Recovery, nutrient repair is key. If you can start getting some of the basic nutrients, which we can discuss in a minute, which ones do you really need? How do you figure out what you need? How do you not waste money on supplements? If you combine the nutrient repair with being proactive about whatever your particular issues are that are stressing you out, that you perceive to be root causes of why you're turning alcohol, then you're really ahead of the curve.
Because that's something that I realized I could have done a long time ago and I didn't often do it. Usually after I had those moments of opportunity, I guess you could call it, I would waste it. I would basically say, well I feel a little better than usual this morning. Isn't that nice? And sometimes I would just, if it was a Sunday, I'd sit on the couch and watch mindless TV. Maybe I'd wait a few hours before turning to alcohol because I didn't feel impending doom. Or maybe sometimes I would start drinking anyway and say, see I don't have a problem because I feel great. I'm not drinking because I feel bad, I'm just drinking because I feel like it, at 9:30 AM on a Sunday or whatever, by myself. If you can get some clarity, some clear mindedness on those particular days in which you feel like you have 20 minutes, maybe 40 minutes, maybe a few hours of time, and you don't feel totally horrible is what I'm saying, then you can maybe do what I didn't do.
Which is formulate a plan, a proactive plan to attack whatever those things are in your life. I know I'm using aggressive language that maybe doesn't resonate with some people, but figure out how to tackle what it is that's bothering you. Is it your finances? Do you have a business that's not doing well? What are the root causes of that? Write down, I'm a big fan of lists, I try to diagnose the problem, come up with a solution. In all likelihood it's not going to be a perfect solution, but it's better than nothing. Done is better than perfect. That's the case with plans and blueprints. You and I are all about blueprints, whether it's for alcohol recovery or businesses or whatever. And again, if you can combine that with fixing your biochemistry, balancing yourself out a bit, allowing yourself to center yourself, then you're going to be in much better shape than if you never take those opportunities to do something.
I'll give you an example, I still do this. It's not because I am dealing with an alcohol addiction, it's not because I am feeling particularly stressed. It's not because I'm particularly individually that worried about macro events. I've learned to distance myself and untether myself from the negativity of the collective consciousness to some degree. But one thing I've done recently is stick to a meal plan that I made for myself. So every three days I cook a massive amount of food and that I eat and that's my breakfast and my lunch. And it's suited for what I do. I do a lot of mixed martial arts, a lot of lifting, a lot of yoga. My energy level has been noticeably better. My cravings for carbs have been noticeably better and I'm no longer doing stupid things, and they're not that stupid, but wasting money, let's say at Chipotle or some grass fed burger place where I can go get a burger and now it's $17 or something like that just on a Tuesday after I just did MMA and I'm about to go back to work.
And then it's like, well am I going to eat the bun? I am I going to eat the fries that they always give me, even though I said no fries and they look great? That kind of thing. I've simplified my life by being proactive. I remember the morning that I sat down and I felt great as I usually do these days. I said, all right, I need to do something about the fact that my diet, it's not been awful but it's been scattered and I'm spending a stupid amount of money because now everything costs a stupid amount of money and just not efficient and it's not predictable. I have Fit Recovery, I don't want to get out of shape and be that guy. And as we all get a little older each year, if we don't keep trying to stay on top of our health, then eventually you can let go pretty quick as you and I both know.
And that's actually the irony of alcohol being the glamorous high life luxury substance, is that if you think that's the case, if you're under that misconception, then go look at my before pictures because there's nothing luxurious or glamorous or seductive about those. My face is about the size of a pumpkin or a jack-o-lantern or something and I'm obviously uncomfortable. I wake up every morning running out of my apartment trying to get this last button on my collared shirt to go, because my neck was so bloated from all the vodka I chugged the night before. Again, if you think that my lifestyle back then was glamorous because I drank alcohol all the time, then you'd be wrong. And a lot of people listening probably know this for themselves. They don't need to look at that.
But that's why I put up all those embarrassing before pictures because it goes to show the stark reality in the face of all this glamorous marketing and Corona billboards with the picture of the beer that has nothing to do with the people that did hours of Pilates and whatever they did to get washboard abs or whatever they called them. But anyway, I'm digressing. There's a lot obviously that people can be stressed about even in a normal holiday season year without all of the things that seem to be going on. But you can come up with your own blueprint for taking responsibility. I don't mean that in a strict school teacher type sense of get it together. Forming your own response. That's what I mean, it means to be responsible, to be response able. That's freeing and that's being proactive and that's a really potent stress reduction strategy.
And as part of that, you can decide whether to tackle, is it your diet? Are you spending too much money on stupid food like I have in the past? Do you need to start doing something really therapeutic for yourself, like doing yoga or perhaps cooking for yourself once every couple days and putting it in glass Tupperware like I do? I make this amazing scramble. I love eggs. And so I'll just tell everyone my scramble is basically a bunch of really high quality eggs that is expensive of course, but not as expensive as going and getting grass fed burgers or two bowls at Chipotle after a few hours of mixed martial arts. And then usually some lean meat and some potatoes that I will slice up and I'll bake in the oven and usually put some Cajun spices, sea salt, whatever. And also some vegetables.
I'll saute some onions and peppers and olive oil, which is probably a step up from the sunflower oil, which is what I think they're using at Chipotle. I'll layer all of this in glass Tupperware containers, make a large amount. I have three or four big glass Tupperware containers, usually potatoes, eggs, meat, and then vegetables on top. There's also something called the cold potato diet for people who aren't going totally carb free. It's interesting where when you refrigerate potatoes, the starch digests more slowly than if you were to just bake a potato and eat it. There are health benefits I guess to the extent that you want to include starches in your diet, and I do, because I need explosiveness at the gym and sometimes these are my only carbs. I'm pretty low carb, but there's health benefits to having a slower digesting carb and cold potatoes.
My body seems to react pretty well, at least in contrast to grains, which I can tolerate, but I will notice some bloating and maybe some digestive issues in comparison to just very smooth sailing with this. I found what works for me, I'm proactive, every couple days, usually every three days, three and a half, twice a week, I will start shopping the vegetables, prepare the meat, grill the meat, whatever I need to do, make the eggs, layer it all, put the potatoes in the oven, slice them real thin, put them in a cast iron pan. It's fun. I only have to clean up my place twice a week. Sometimes I'll cook dinner or I'll have dinner out, but at least I'm not going and eating stupid stuff. Where I live in Savannah, there are always these ridiculous lines that my friend actually who's visiting for a week, he pointed out, he's like, how is there a line at this? It's a place called Green Tea.
I don't know what it is. I assume it's a Chinese drive-through. There's a line there, there's a line at Chick-fil-A, there's a line at Arby's, there's a line at McDonald's, a line at Burger King. I think a lot of people could benefit from meal prepping. Just go to Costco and get all the stuff that you're going to need for a month or two depending on how big your freezer is, and then just cook it, Like twice a week. It's hugely stress relieving. If you find out what you actually need, you're going to save money and you're going to like it more and you're actually going to know what's going into your body. So anyway, that's just a small aside there for people, because I know a lot of people do struggle with diet and they stress out because they're not in the shape that they want to be.
Within a week of me doing this, my skin looked better. I'm taking a shower, I'm looking in the mirror like, well, I look better than I did, so I'm not eating random burger buns or french fries that I didn't order and I decided to have a third of them anyway. Anyway, tackle what you need to tackle. Maybe for some people it's personal finances or it's relationships or marriages or whatever. Come up with a plan, put that plan into action. And if you're feeling like you're just biochemically incapable or that you're struggling because you feel like you live in a malevolent universe and you're not rested, you have nervous exhaustion, that's where the nutrient repair comes in. Part of being proactive can be what supplements do I need to make up for my consumption of this or to help counteract my consumption of this highly deleterious substance called alcohol, which is poisoning my liver and my gut and my brain and causing inflammation damaging every cell in my body?
What can I do? It's like, well you want to start with the obvious things. I'm not going to go into a whole spiel here on nutrient repair. We've done it many times in the past. I'd say check out, I probably have 200 blog articles on fitrecovery.com if you want to check that out. And then also my course, Total Alcohol Recovery 2.0 can basically give you a degree of some sort in that. But I will say the basics, B vitamins, magnesium, one drink causes you to excrete several times the amount of magnesium that you normally would. So imagine what five drinks every day is going to do to you, or 10 or 12 or 20 or whatever. That's just one nutrient. Without proper magnesium you're depleting your ability to conduct over 300 biological processes that your body needs to conduct. People often say, well is this nutrient good for energy or is it good for relaxation or is it good for sleep? Or is it good for feeling optimistic and not depressed?
The answer with magnesium to those questions is yes, all those things. That's the case with many other multifaceted nutrients as well and very basic ones. And of course the amino acids, that's where we get into the more targeted sense, the more targeted techniques I guess you could say, with amino acid therapy. Some people benefit from mega doses, very particular amino acids. That's something that I talk about in my course. We both have helped people with coaching. My friend Chris Engen, over at Nutrition 4 Recovery, is really good with that stuff. And if you wanted to try out something that's going to cover out a lot of bases at once, then you might check out BioRebalance, which is my supplement. I'm a co-founder of that company. And so you have relatively high doses of a lot of the amino acids that are precursors for serotonin, endorphins, dopamine, GABA and more.
And also the co-factors, the vitamins, minerals, enzymes that you would need in order to produce those neurotransmitters from the raw materials of those amino acids. And of course that's a premium supplement, but that's why we have a 30 day guarantee policy for that. I'll just say, we don't want your money. If it doesn't work for you, then you get your money back, no questions asked. But a lot of people do find that to be very useful. That's the best tangible answer. My course is, I love my course, a lot of people love my course, been around since, what? 2016 or something like that. And yet it's not a tangible thing. My best tangible, I guess recommendation for the trial and error approach is to get yourself some BioRebalance, some extra magnesium, some extra L-glutamine, which is really good for hypoglycemia, which like 95 plus percent of people who drink too much struggle with.
Maybe get yourself some CBD oil, CBDPure is a company that I like a lot. In fact, I emailed them a long time ago, they gave me a coupon for 15% off. I think it's 15, maybe it's 12. But anyway, I think it's just Fit Recovery at CBDPure, I would go for the most potent CBD oil you can find. CBD oil has been shown to help people relax, to combat stagefright. It helps to increase the quality and duration of REM sleep and it's helpful in quitting all substances. That would just be my start if I had to form a proactive plan. I'm going to try BioRebalance. If it works for me, great, I found a new resource. Maybe I can then get more advanced and figure out, maybe I want to really mega dose something under the guidance of a doctor or a coach or whatever. If it doesn't work, get my money back. Same thing for I think a lot of the supplements that we recommend they have a money back guarantee, so that's a good thing in these difficult times.
But same thing for CBD oil for L-glutamine, which you can find L-glutamine easily if you need extra of that. That's a nutrient I love to megadose, and a lot of people tell me they love to megadose. I actually still put five grams of that in my intra workout water container along with a couple other nutrients and electrolytes during my MMA workouts, because that allows me to not get too hungry during my workout when I'm burning a lot of calories. I don't crave carbs until a few hours later. But anyway, L-glutamine is a great one, magnesium is a huge one. We could talk about this all day, but that is my attempt and long-winded attempt to give an answer to I think the timely topic that you brought up.
Matt Finch: That was like a fire hose. People are getting their time and energies worth by investing that into watching or listening to this. So many good strategies. Let's say for somebody, I'm calculating the cost of these and realizing too that there's people that can't even afford a couple hundred dollars, can't even afford a couple hundred dollars for a really good supplement protocol. For people like that, for people that really they're just on such a tight budget, maybe a fixed, I've talked to a lot of people that are on fixed incomes too, and what do I get? I'm on a fixed income, I can only spend so much. There is a brand for people in that situation, which I know you know of as well too, Chris, which is NOW Foods. N-O-W, NOW, not yesterday, not tomorrow, NOW. NOW Foods, they have really good products, a big variety of products and they seem to be so much less pricey than virtually everything else out there. Not really crappy ones.
Another thing too is I typically wouldn't buy supplements if I were someone in the situation right now that they sell at Target or CVS or Rite Aid or Walmart. They did a large study where they just grabbed a bunch of random products from stores such as those and actually tested the supplements to see what they actually had in them. And a large percentage of the products either didn't have what it said it had in there, or it had much less quantity than it actually stated it has. So this balancing act of where you want to buy a good brand, but you also want to get something that is affordable. So for people in that situation where you can't necessarily go get CBD oil and extra magnesium and glutamine and BioRebalance restore and extra magnesium, there's a lot of people that can't even afford that. Check out NOW Foods.
Also here's something that we have talked about, but this is worth repeating here, is herbal teas. Herbal teas are, yeah, they take more time than swallowing a capsule or taking a liquid or a soft gel or a sublingual. But things like chamomile tea, passion flour tea, lemon bomb tea, spring dragon longevity tea, tulsi green tea, turmeric, ginger tea, so many different types, green tea, English breakfast, black tea, oolong tea, teas are a great way, depending on the tea to get electrolytes, to boost positive mood enhancing neurochemicals, to get micronutrients, to get polyphenols, which are the most powerful type of antioxidant, such as in green tea. Those are some strategies right there. You also mentioned another thing that I want to dovetail on, which is your intra workout drink, which you gave me when I did MMA with you.
And later on that day I sat in that very infrared sauna with you and that was all after. Then I got a massage too. It was MMA workout, shower, deep tissue massage that you got for me. Thank you so much. You took me out for tacos. Then later on we did the infrared sauna and I slept like 11 hours that night. Slept really deep. So where was I going with that? Oh yeah, the intra workout drink. I noticed that the water bottle you let me borrow was really awesome. It looked like an expensive one. It was a big water bottle, very nice materials, beautiful, masculine for me. And what I found was that having that nice beverage container made me feel better about, if it would've been in just a Nestle water bottle or something, if we just filled up some crappy water and put a little bit of powder in there or an Aquafina water bottle, I wouldn't have felt as good. I wouldn't have been as inclined to drink the whole thing like I did.
That is a powerful strategy for getting through the holidays, for getting through social, any type of social occasion, where the thing I talked about earlier, that human adult conditioning of wanting or needing to have a drink in our hands at social gatherings to feel comfortable, to be more comfortable in our own skin. If someone's not going to be drinking alcoholic beverage, what else can you do? Do you not feel comfortable with a drink in your hand? I'm at the phase and I've been at the phase for many years. I could give a rat's what other people are doing and what other people are drinking. People don't even ask me nowadays, why aren't you drinking? I'm giving off vibes of just total confidence, really feelings of inner peace and secureness within myself and love and compassion and wisdom, the energetic vibration I'm giving off is such that people don't even ask me that question.
On the opposite spectrum of that, when I first quit drinking and doing drugs and everything, that was not the case. I needed to have a drink in my hand, otherwise I'd feel uncomfortable. And yes, people did notice those vibrations and body language out as I was giving off and they would ask me, do you not drink? Or what are you drinking? Oh no, I'm in recovery or this or that or the other. They don't ask me that anymore. It's just when you have this certain vibe about you, it shuts down people's radars and they just don't ask you about that. It's pretty cool phenomena, all that stuff. But for people that are new to this, haven't developed that type of really inner confidence where you just don't give a shit if other people know that you're not drinking. It's this weird conditioning that we have to outgrow and that can take a while.
In the meantime, how about having a really cool beverage and beverage container? You're drinking something awesome, alcohol free, but it is a really cool high status beverage, for example, and really nice packaging container. Then it helps you as a crutch, as a short term temporary crutch, to feel more comfortable in your own skin, to not feel like the odd person out at the Christmas party or the New Year's party or the wedding or the graduation or the dinner party, whatever it may be. Having a nice container of some type of alcohol-free beverage. And that's different for different people. For one person it might be a nice cup of tea and a really nice teacup. For another person it might be a really nice glass having a beverage that's on the rocks, it's just ice. For another person it might be a can of dram apothecary, adaptogenic CBD sparkling water.
For another person it could be a mocktail beverage that's in a little cocktail glass, but it's a mocktail. Here's a point where the proactivity you mentioned can come in handy, to where people can proactively write down a plan for, okay, what would it take for me to feel comfortable at a Christmas party or a New Year's party or another type of social setting where I have a drink in my hand? What would make me feel a lot more comfortable than not having anything in my hand or than have having a crappy bottle of water, like some really lame bottled water, like I was saying Aquafina or something? Because unconsciously a lot of humans we're programmed to do things that raise our status. Almost no one thinks about this consciously unless they're highly materialistic and narcissistic.
Most of us feel this unconsciously, making decisions based on what raises our status. I think that's why a lot of people in these social gatherings, especially around the holidays where it's very conditioned into us, let's have some spiked eggnog beverage with rum, or whatever the heck you put in that stuff. Or some holiday punch or wapatula, we're drinking some wapatula, that can raise our status. The only reason it can is because everyone else's programmed too. The only reason everyone else's programmed is because marketers and advertisers know what the hell they're doing. They know how to program us. There's a famous quote that goes along the lines of, it is no measure of good health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society. And that's what we're living in today's age, more than any other age in the past, probably a hundred years or more. We're living in a profoundly sick society.
If you look at the statistics on addiction to alcohol and drugs, mental health issues, obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and other types of mental and physical disorders, off the charts, suicide, off the charts, from as early as little kids, eight to 10 years old or even younger, all the way up to senior citizens. People are really struggling. All the pandemic was accelerate the path that we were already on. The more we live these artificial lives where our feet aren't touching the surface of the earth, we're not getting enough sunlight. A lot of the foods many people are eating are edible food like substances and Frankenfoods versus organic, wild caught and grass fed whole foods, meats and plants and fruits. So spending a lot of time indoors, not getting the connection that we need, many of us.
There's lots of things that people can do. Proactivity, I love that so much. It comes down to getting, like you said, I love that idea of waiting till you get a good night sleep when you have a day off or at least a half day off to where you can stop yourself from the conditioned daily, automatic hypnosis, habitual actions and behaviors and thoughts, sit down with a pencil and paper or your notebook or laptop or whiteboard or app on your phone or whatever it is, your journal, and really do some proactive, what in my life is really not going well and what do I want to stop doing? What am I doing that I need to stop or cut back on? What am I not doing that I need to start doing? What am I doing that I need to do more of?
For some people, this will be applicable, I want to get through the holidays and not drink, but I don't need some type of a plan to do that. I can't just fly by the seat by the, I forget how that saying goes, but I can't just go in there and just hope that it goes well. Let me come up with a strategic plan of how I can do this. I love writing too. You like to write things down, lists. So do I obviously. Blueprints. I even have a course called Recovery Coach Blueprint. Have the name in the product. Blueprints are important. Alcohol Recovery Blueprints. Customizable roadmaps, mental models, blueprints, systems, strategic action plans that are unique to the individual. You can sit there and write. The other day my brain just had so much shit in it and it was just this whirlwind, so many things that I needed to get done. Just really busy times recently.
And I was like, ah, and I ran out of paper in my journal. My journal was out for a few days and that's why I had all that shit in my head. Luckily I searched around and I found just a little notebook and it had a decent stack, maybe 20 sheets of paper. I was like, okay, cool. This will work. I like to have a nice journal, but whatever. I just fast forwarded to those pages towards the end, sat on the couch, put on the 4K TV on YouTube. I put this, this is a cool channel, Primal Earth Sounds on YouTube. I just found it a couple weeks ago. They have these aerial view 4K footage, the most beautiful places on earth with very peaceful healing music playing over it. I put that on low volume on my TV. I'm looking out the window. So I have the trees and nature out my window in the living room. Beautiful view. The glass sliding doors.
On the TV I had those nature scenes with the peaceful music at low volume. I had had a good night's sleep and I had had some tea or coffee. I had some type of beverage that was caffeinated, and I had my notebook with all those pages. And that 270 or whatever dollar pen that you gave me that says Fit Recovery on it. Got my nice pen and the notebook and I just sat there and I journaled four or five pages, traditional pages. Let's see, where is it? It's right here. And then I ripped them out and threw them away because this is not a notebook for that type of stuff. But see this, these are big pages. I did four or five pages of that, and I write pretty small. You gave me this too, this thing when we did our podcast in Savannah.
Chris Scott: Oh yeah.
Matt Finch: So I'm always writing. There's a client I'm working with right now and one thing that is helping her is I'm giving her regular writing assignments customized for her and for her treatment plan, which is based on her goals, customized, empowering, clarity, enhancing questions. And so you just write, write, write. You talked earlier about clarity. The lower someone's clarity and confidence is, in my opinion, the more likely they are to make impulsive decisions and make emotion-based decisions and not decisions that are based on their best self-interest, more like feeling based decisions. I think the higher someone's clarity and confidence is the less impulsive they are and the more decisions they make that are based on things that are meaningful versus expedient.
One of the things that I love about learning from Jordan Peterson, takeaways like that, do what is meaningful rather than do what is expedient. Think more of your future self and long-range consequences versus impulsive emotion-based trigger and craving based decisions to get out of discomfort and change the way you're feeling. Or I'll drink or I'll eat this candy bar or I'll go back and buy more cigarettes or I'll get back on Pornhub or whatever it is. Do some more online shopping or gambling addiction. Clarity and confidence are huge. And if I'm not writing journaling on a regular basis, my confidence is still pretty high, but my clarity goes down. It becomes a whirlwind of recurring thoughts. The same thoughts, I got to do this, I got to remember to do that. What about this? This is a good idea for a podcast. This is a good idea for this. I got to call that person back.
So writing daily or almost daily gets that stuff out of my whirlwind of thoughts up here in the mind, gets them on paper, captures them, and then I don't need to think about it anymore. That increases clarity, decreases stress, increases confidence, increases inner peace.
Chris Scott: Absolutely. Well said. I think something that I should mention is that I spent a long time writing down lists of alternatives to my past routines and habits and behaviors and compulsions and impulsive courses of action. And that's one reason I had the sauna behind me. A lot of people who I knew thought it might be a frivolous purchase. It was funny because I ordered it from Amazon in the middle of the COVID period, because I missed going to the gym. I was getting really stir crazy for a while and we didn't have a bad lockdown here, but it was bad enough for me to get stir crazy and missed going to the gym and my routine of working out in the steam room, which again could sound trivial, but for me that was a foundation, that was a rock for my just sense of holistic health.
There's no feeling, and I can say this with experiencing both of these things that I can't drink two bottles of wine and feel, if I drank two bottles of wine now I'd pass out. But back in the day, drinking two bottles of wine would, I was reaching for the state that I wanted after a great workout and a steam room session, but I was not reaching that state. That's what I wanted to achieve. Now I know like, that's the way. I did have a little bit of, not panic, but disappointment and longing to get back into that routine. That's one reason I got that infrared sauna. I probably go in there four, maybe five nights a week right before bed. It's also been shown to increase growth hormone secretion. I'm not trying to pitch people on a sauna, but if you have a gym that has one or if you have one that you don't use, then use it.
That's just a simple example of an alternative course of action, because when I get out of that thing, I feel the way that I used to drink to try to feel, but I don't have to drink. It's like, what an amazing shortcut. I don't have to put anything in my body. I have to drink some water afterwards. I usually bring some water in there. Alternatives, courses of action, ways to achieve the physical and mental and emotional and spiritual states that you tried but failed to achieve with alcohol. That's worth thinking about too. It's like, is there a spiritual yearning or do you really think you're going to scratch that itch, that spiritual itch with a toxic compound called ethanol? I doubt it.
And so for me also having drinks, and this is something that you know a lot about, but when I go to a place and people are having drinks or they're going to have dinner, if it's a fancy place, to me, I don't care about social status or whatever, but if I'm bored by having regular water, then I will often do what I call the Chris Scott special, which I know I ordered a bunch when you were here. I ordered it all the time. And they know about this. Where the places I go where I'm something of a regular, Chris Scott special, maybe it's world famous now, I don't know. But it's basically two shots of fresh lemon juice and then sparkling mineral water. Pellegrino, Perrier, almost no restaurant has Gerosteiner. I love that one. That's at Whole Foods. Socosani, haven't seen that out there, but that's another great one.
But anyway, you get the benefits of the mineral water with its much better mineral content, electrolytes. Some brands have a pretty decent amount of magnesium, so you're killing two birds with one stone there. And also they don't have all the gunk and crap that's in tap water or at least you hope that they wouldn't. And then a few shots of lemon juice. You got to detoxify your liver, your kidneys, and it's really good for digestion. To me it tastes amazing. Now, I guess I don't have a sweet tooth really. I probably haven't had a Coke or a diet Coke in years. I have a Zevia occasionally. I don't remember what soda or diet soda tastes like actually. I know Zevia or-
Matt Finch: [inaudible 00:47:40].
Chris Scott: ... or mineral water tastes like. I don't have a sweet tooth. I don't eat a lot of sweets. Occasionally I might have something if someone is having a special type occasion. So for me, I love the lemon juice and the sparkling water. And sometimes in the places around here, it's almost like bottle service. They bring out whatever that thing is to keep the, it's the bottle cooler, but it's a cool chrome or stainless steel thing and the bottle goes in there and they've got the ice or maybe it's just an ice bucket with it. It's literally like I'm sitting in a club with my bottle of vodka, but it's just a bottle of Pellegrino. It's not cheap, because nothing's cheap now. But that's my luxury. I get that. They'll bring out the lemon juice. Sometimes they have the lemon juice in three shot glasses and I'll put two of them in there and take a shot of lemon juice and then make my sparkling water and lemon juice cocktail. That's a favorite for me.
And then eggnog, I probably haven't had, I think they have non-alcoholic eggnog. Of course they do, because people make it at home. I guess it comes in a carton, right? I haven't had it in a very long time. But I realize I did something recently which was like eggnog, which might appall some people, but I put a bunch of raw eggs, bunch of raw milk and a bunch of raw honey and a blender and I blended it up and it tasted amazing. I had my friends of friends who are doctors or whatever yelling at me for drinking raw milk. But I don't care. There are things that I want to do. I'm not putting half a point of vodka down my system. I'm going to experiment, find what I like. I'm going to drink the things I like.
I think a lot of people, especially in early recovery, when they're feeling fragile, there's a hesitancy to explore, to find new things, to show up somewhere and not drink, because they perceive the hoards of other people out there in the world is like packs of wolves that are out to get you.
Matt Finch: Totally.
Chris Scott: And usually it's not true. There are wolves, I guess there are psychopaths out there, but usually it's just herds of sheep for better or worse who are conditioned to go out and drink and do whatever. And so there's this deferential reverence with which people approach just other people who do what everyone seems to do. I understand that, because I had to confront that myself when I quit drinking. It's like should I approach the social customs like drinking when you go to a restaurant, every time you turn on a movie, people are drinking almost constantly. I don't notice that anymore, but I did then because it bothered me. Do I approach that with that deference and just the assumption that they're doing it right because everyone else is doing it? Or do I look at that mass conditioning and do I say, you know what, this is dumb and I'm not going to participate in it?
I sort of developed over time, I guess what you could call it compassionate contempt for people engaging in holiday binging. Or it's Wednesday and we're going out to dinner, so of course I'm going to have three quarters of a bottle of wine. That's dumb. I don't hate them. I try to be, love for everyone, compassionate, but slightly contemptuous or at least pitying the compulsion to do that based on nothing, no independent analysis at all except a desire to go with the herd. I think that's something worth considering. What do people want to be? Do you want be a sheep? Obviously you don't want to be a wolf, but you don't have to be either of those things, you can be a wild horse. You can do your own thing, you can get along with the sheep. You can have the wolves not want to mess with you. You can be a wild horse, figure out what you want, what do you like to do? What do you like to drink when you go out? What do you like to eat?
And you don't have to follow convention, and you don't have to be a total weirdo in order to break convention and do your own thing. You don't have to have people contempt you. The degree of contempt for you does not indicate how virtuous you are in your independence. People may or may not have contempt for you. I guess that's a whole separate issue. But I think that's like the classic conformist, non-conformist thing. You don't need to go overboard in order to not participate in the elements of society that you find not to be productive or resourceful for you. And so with that said, I'm not going to go into all of the various things that I like to drink instead of other things that people drink.
You mentioned a couple of them, Dram, CBD, sparkling water, I just ran out of that, so I have another shipment coming soon. I love that stuff. I'm often double fisting. Right now I had my water and my dragon herbs tea and it's just a matter of reconditioning yourself and then also doing some analysis or just some spiritual or even intellectual questioning of, what do I want to be doing and it's your life and are you really getting what you want to be getting out of alcohol? And if not, then there's no better time to change that than now.
Matt Finch: Love it. I love what you just said right there. The only thing I would add before we wind down here is, based on the people that I've worked with and corresponded with, it seems to me like the stronger a person's spirituality and faith and religion or something along those lines, the more somebody is connected with the unseen, not the material aspect of everything of matter, but the invisible, the metaphysical, the energetic, spiritual, whether they call it the universe, nature, source, the cosmic mind, God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit and all that type of stuff, Krishna, whatever it is, it seems to me I've recognized a pattern. The more people are really in tune with that and in the flow of that, the less they give a crap about fitting in with everyone else.
Seems to me that's the case where when people really have a strong spiritual or religious foundation, they're just not caring about having something in their hands. I don't know, it just seems to be interesting. Also it seems to me too as a pattern recognition, that people that have the highest levels of spirituality, consciousness, belief, faith, whatever you want to call it in that regard, even if they're not exercising all the time, it seems like the less people have that spiritual aspect to them or religious aspect, the more they have to rely on things like amino acids and supplements and all these strategies and everything. This is not true across the board, but that's something that I don't think I talk about on here enough and it's huge and each, but I never, what's the word I'm looking for? Proselytize. That's a hard word for me to say.
But it's just something that I've noticed and seen. When people are more spiritual or more religious, more bigger believers, however they define that, whatever, there's so many different styles and iterations of that and styles of that. But yeah, they just seem to be the most comfortable in their own skin, oftentimes. They seem to be the most willing to be at one of these holiday things or something and just not give a shit about what other people have in their hands and what other people are asking them, because they have this faith, they have this faith, and that faith is very powerful. So many people in today's age are lacking faith. And so it's just such a huge thing to have, even if it's not faith in some type of higher power or God or the universe, to have faith in something, faith in yourself, faith on your self-reliance, faith on that your family's there for you. Faith in the power of nature.
So many people are lacking faith and it seems to me too that the less faith someone has, that things are ultimately okay or going to be okay, the more that leads to making those decisions to get out of those negative feelings. The higher someone's faith is, seems like the more they can deal with hard feelings and hard emotions and stressful situations to get through without reaching for things like alcohol, drugs, gambling, pornography, toxic emotions and patterns like that. I just wanted to add that in too, because I know a lot of people that listen to this are either Christian or very spiritual, and I just wanted to chime in on that too, make sure we cover the bio, psychosocial, environmental, and now spiritual basis. We did all of the pillars of the hierarchy of recovery on this episode. And I'll shut up. Did you want to add anything else?
Chris Scott: No. Might have to do a part two. I'll add, it seems like people who are spiritually centered have healthier brains, probably lower stress, less cortisol running through their systems perhaps. But yeah, for sure. Topic that we can expand on.
Matt Finch: All right, part two coming up next week. Thank you everybody. We love you so much and see you soon.
Chris Scott: Hey everyone, Chris Scott here. If you like the information on today's episode regarding supplementation and empowerment strategies for addiction recovery, then please subscribe to the Elevation Recovery Podcast and leave us a rating and review on iTunes. And if you benefited directly from this information, I'm confident in saying that you'll love the information packed online courses that Matt Finch and I have created. Matt Finch's, Ultimate Opiate Detox 4.0 is a six module, 30 activity course that contains video lessons, written lessons, PDF downloads, worksheets, audios, and much more. It has everything you could possibly need to know to conquer opioid addiction in the easiest and most comfortable way possible.
My own course, Total Alcohol Recovery 2.0 is the most cutting edge resource for anyone who wants to transcend alcohol and build their best lives. To get these courses, to learn more and to read testimonials, simply go to opiateaddictionsupport.com/ultimate. Again, that's opiateaddictionsupport.com/ultimate. For Matt's course or for my course, go to fit-recovery.com/course. Again, that's fit-recovery.com/course. You can also go to elevationrecovery.com to see the show notes for this episode.
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