• Waking Up Sober in a Convent.

    Sep 27 2021
    In this episode of Giving Voice to Recovery Elizabeth interviews Kathy Stolecki. Kathy is a singer/songwriter and a health coach. She is also the author of the book Waking Up Sober in a Convent. Kathy shares how she came to that moment of clarity and realized that she needed and wanted to get sober. She takes us on her personal spiritual journey and shares her Spiritual awakening. A journey from devout Catholic to finding a broader spiritual path that is still central to her life and recovery. From a novice in a convent to an empowered woman who found it essential to be true to herself and her sexuality. Kathy’s personal recovery story is a beautiful demonstration of the importance of self-honesty, self-respect and compassion.  Listen and check out Kathy’s book Waking Up sober in a Convent! Support this podcast
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    37 mins
  • Evolve & Develop Your Intuition

    Sep 20 2021
    In this episode of Giving Voice to Recovery Elizabeth interviews Jenn Beninger, the CEO and founder of Genius Unlocked Coaching Institute. Jenn has refined the art of coaching others on how to delve into what's holding them back and live in their purpose by calling on their intuition. Jenn explains that the best way to get long lasting and permanent results in any area of life is to cultivate an unshakable trust in yourself by evolving your intuition!  She shares her personal recovery story and how these tools helped her move forward in her own life! Listen to find out why and how this unique method will help you take inspired action with confidence! If you like what you hear, be sure to Join the next 5 Day Class, Keys to Unlocking Intuition by clicking on the link below: https://bit.ly/3EyiO1T (https://bit.ly/3EyiO1T) Support this podcast
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    1 hr and 6 mins
  • Love Without Martinis – Chantal Jauvin Interview

    Sep 8 2021
    Love Without Martinis - How Couples Build Healthy Relationships in Recovery - Chantal Jauvin InterviewCheck out my interview with Chantal Jauvin, Author of a new book titled Love Without Martinis, How Couples Build Healthy Relationships in Recovery, Based on Real Stories. As a person in long-term recovery, who is also in a long-term marriage to another person in long-term recovery, I absolutely appreciate Love Without Martinis!  When we are as committed to our recovery as we are to our partnerships, there is no shortage of digging deep and continuing to work on ourselves so that we can be successful at both.  Chantal walks us through the six practices outlined in her book. She shares the stories conveyed in her book that I think many will be able to relate to. If you are building or rebuilding an intimate relationship, my hope is that you will feel empowered by this interview and by Chantal’s book. Nothing is more powerful in recovery from substance use disorder than the sharing of our personal stories and this proves true in this important area of life, relationships!  Great Read!  Elizabeth Support this podcast
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    45 mins
  • The Interview With Recovery Coach David Malow

    Apr 13 2021
    Join Elizabeth as she interviews David Malow Recovery Coach. David's mission is to provide a bridge of guidance and support for individuals and their loved ones who are struggling with chemical dependency, while helping to facilitate the action steps which are necessary to maintain a happy, healthy sober lifestyle. David enjoys long-term sobriety and is a current member of CAADAC, CCAR, Recovery View, and The Sober Living Network. In 2009, David worked as a consultant to the Betty Ford Center and wrote the policies and procedures manual for their BFCSL Sober Living program. He received a scholarship from The Betty Ford Center to obtain his certification as a Grief Recovery Specialist at the Grief Recovery Institute in Los Angeles in 2008. Since 2005, David has been the lead alumni volunteer at the Betty Ford Center/Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation, having served for over 5,000 hours. In 2009 David was a consultant to the Betty Ford Center for their BFCSL Sober Living program. For more about the services David offers you can contact him at: https://www.youtube.com/redirect?event=video_description&redir_token=QUFFLUhqa1pOZjZuWXh3bmQtSmNhRzJxb0ZBdzNuaFJWd3xBQ3Jtc0tueHJ1RHlIYUZZTXBUMENvVUVxNnpHc0dUYS1xRzNoTy10Y2NIeU9VMlVXa2tXd2F0M0RLNENtaE4tV1p3d0huQ1dFRVdnTzRPTGpDZzRhN05jcm9qSXN6MFYzSVlpZEJ1UUl1QnFCRGVXY2J2T2NHNA&q=https%3A%2F%2Fcoachdavidmalow.com%2F (https://coachdavidmalow.com/)​ For more information about Workshops and Coaching with Giving Voice to Recovery or Genius Unlocked please visit https://www.youtube.com/redirect?event=video_description&redir_token=QUFFLUhqbTAtd0NJVF9RNU9aMlowRkNDUzRkU29raGhvZ3xBQ3Jtc0trWEY4cVpIeFFFMzYzYU14ajA3V0oxQ3hCbi1qTDVpZkpGbGpxTHpCOWZ5emFZV3FWdmUybkdRRVFHZlNrTUhvT2hqcExZUGFTMk5JRzI2dWlZQW4xNGJqMm1ON0dQbm1uYmVkcTFYZXYxZ19zd3hxWQ&q=https%3A%2F%2Fgivingvoicetorecovery.com%2Fworkshops%2F (https://givingvoicetorecovery.com/wor...) For Information about Elizabeth's Group Coaching Programs visit: https://givingvoicetorecovery.com/workshops/ (GivingVoicetoRecovery/workshops) Support this podcast
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    44 mins
  • The Windshield & The Rearview Mirror

    Jan 27 2021
    As we start a new year a lot of people will be declaring new year’s resolutions. I used to do this and it did not work, now I know why. A resolution is when we resolve to quit something, something that’s not good for us. Addiction easily falls into this category. “Swearing off” is rarely effective because it doesn’t deal with the complex underlying issues involved. However, the main reason resolutions are rarely successful is that just quitting isn’t enough. In recovery we make a decision to change. We decide to take a new direction; in fact, the word decide comes from the same root word as disciple – it means to follow, to take a new direction. Decisions are powerful and they are what bring us to a new way of living in recovery. Decisions are what set us on a new journey, a new road so to speak. When we make a decision we let go of our old ideas and ways of doing things. We learn to model others who have been successful at staying abstinent. Just quitting would be the equivalent to just stopping the car whereas making a decision is like taking a different road. When I was new in recovery it was difficult for me to see past my present problems and pain. I was stuck in the same old story day after day and I didn’t know how to get out of it. One day I decided to do the day differently. A real decision becomes real action. It’s a decision verses a wish when the deciding thought is followed by an action toward the new direction. We can’t always think our way into right action, we often have to act our way into right thinking. That was a big “a ha” moment for me when I realized how true that little statement is. It changed my life. The next important piece of the puzzle for me in any decision or change is to focus on where I am going instead of focusing on the past. There is a reason the windshield is much larger than the rearview mirror. There is also a reason we have a rearview mirror. Can you imagine what it would be like to drive down the freeway looking primarily at the rear view mirror? You would have to go very slow, stop often and probably end up in a collision. That is exactly what it’s like to go through life focusing on where you have been instead of focusing on where you intend to go. You might be in the car, pointed in and possibly even moving in the right direction but if you are over focused on the rear view mirror – you are doing it the hard way. I spent way too much time doing just that so I know how painful it can be. I encourage you to learn from the past, but don’t live there. When we are on our recovery path, we are on the right road, traveling in the right direction. When we learn to let go and forgive everything in the past, our lives accelerate in our new positive direction.  I, like most of the people I’ve met on my recovery journey, have a tendency to focus on the past regrets and hurts. We cannot change the events of the past. However, we do learn how to clean up our part in those hurts and regrets and that is when we learn to accept the past. When we learn from it and share it with others that they might heal, that is when it has value. The other little distortion that can keep us “in park” is when we are over focused on the future. We create all kinds of anxiety because it’s new territory. I will go into depth in a future podcast/blog post on this topic but for now I will share a few little tricks. First I focus on where I want to go, “I look through the windshield”. To stay present with myself I ask my intuition, my Higher Power, my souls voice to guide my thinking and behavior. When I learn to listen to the still small loving voice I will soon recognize what my next step in that new direction should be. As I develop that trust in my intuitive voice I will gain momentum and learn to enjoy the journey. Just like a literal journey in a car, there is road behind us and road in front of but for right here and right now I am in the car enjoying the scenery, listening to the sound track Support this podcast
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    6 mins
  • The Gift of Giving Thanks

    Nov 26 2020
    For those of us that are blessed with recovery, gratitude becomes a daily practice. Developing an attitude of gratitude is a powerful spiritual principle that helps heal our mind, body and soul.  I believe that substance use disorder (addiction) is, among other things, a soul sickness. The remedy for soul sickness is a spiritual awakening. Spiritual connection, regardless of how you achieve it or what you call it is an important part of the healing process. I respect all forms of spiritual practice because what might work for one person, might not work for another. The most important thing is that you find what works for you. Gratitude and the act of giving thanks is a universal spiritual practice because it works for almost everyone. I believe Gratitude is the simplest and most sincere form of prayer. In early recovery, gratitude was a foreign concept to me. Giving thanks was an occasional reflex from my upbringing, but most of the time I was either stewing in my “victim story” or simmering in self-pity and self-loathing. I had become a “taker”. When I was very newly sober the holidays were upon us and I was super broke. Showing up sober was sure to be an improvement but I was really unconformable. A wise woman suggested to me that I offer to bring something, that that would make me feel better. I told her I barely had enough money for gas to get me there. She suggested that I find something free that had value that I could bring. I was living in Northern California, the Sierra Nevada Mountains at that time so I went out and found some really beautiful pine cones, I put them in a basket that I had and that was the gift I brought to the dinner. The pine cones were appreciated and placed in the center of the table as a part of the center piece. That was my first sober Thanks Giving and that was thirty-four years ago. Something really important happened for me that day, that simple act of giving flipped the switch from being a taker to a giver. I had acted my way into right thinking. We all have something to give and when we start living from a place of abundance and gratitude we start to create our amazing, abundant recovered lives. I am a blessed person and I am so grateful for all my blessings big and small. This year has been a challenge for many, including myself. I am especially grateful for all the hard lessons that I hated at the time but they gave me the learnings that I didn’t even know I needed. Now I do. That’s right, I’m grateful for the hard stuff as well as the fun stuff. My difficulties have and continue to make me a better version of myself. It was my difficulties in life that taught me compassion, resilience and resourcefulness. So when I say that gratitude becomes a way of life in recovery, this is what I am talking about. And just in case I haven’t said so, I am grateful for you! I’m Just Sayin’       qhsl7IJmhTSprqerBPkS  Support this podcast
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    4 mins
  • Stigma

    Oct 30 2020
    The word Stigma was borrowed from Latin meaning "mark or brand”. Stigma in English first referred to a scar left by a hot iron. In modern use the scar is figurative: stigma most often refers to a set of negative and often unfair beliefs that a society has about something—such as the stigma associated with addiction. Words are powerful. How we talk about ourselves and to ourselves, matters. Negative labels such as – Addict, Alcoholic, Drunk and Junkie become part of our identity. People tend to label a person by their behavior, fair or not. It is natural to act congruent with our identity. Identity has a big impact on self-esteem as well as ongoing behavior.  example, “I can’t help but get drunk, I’m an alcoholic.” In recovery, it’s important to “identify”. First to make sure we are in the right place so we can get the help we need for specific substances. Secondly, the honesty and acceptance it takes to “own” the nature of our addictive patterns and substances is an important first step to change. In the rooms we celebrate when people are able to say to the group, “I’m Elizabeth and I’m a …(fill in the blank)”. When we do this, it changes the meaning of that word. It goes from being a negative to a positive, because when we own it, we can change it and not until then.  When we “own it” and we tell the truth about ourselves we start the process of recovery and our identity begins to change. One of the things I started doing when I realized the importance and impact of language was I started identifying myself differently both inside and outside of the 12 –Step rooms.  In the rooms I say “I’m Liz and I am a recovering … I do this to let people, especially those who are new know that we can and do recover and that it’s an ongoing process. I am also telling myself, “Hey girl, you are still in the recovery process, you are not “cured”. Over time It became important to me to identify as a recovering person and a lot of times I will throw the word “grateful” in there, because I am! Out in the rest of the world, I say I’m Elizabeth and I am a person in long-term recovery. When I am outside of the rooms talking about recovery to business people, media professionals or politicians (people who are in positions to make decisions that affect us), I have found it very helpful to eliminate the stigmatized language and labels. Recovered Substance Use Disorder doesn’t look anything like active addiction, in fact it looks normal. Most recovered people don’t openly announce this about themselves without a reason and some people have good reasons to keep it private. For me, my music naturally brought me to advocacy work. My songs reflect my life; my life reflects my recovery. Music brought me to advocacy work but it was advocating for the person who is still suffering, the person right in front of me on any given day that brought me to a deeper level with my songs. Every time I told my story to another person in hopes of connecting and helping, the wound beneath “my scar” lost a little bit more of its pain and shame. Over time the pain was gone and something amazing was in its place – purpose. A scar left behind from the burn of a hot brand is the perfect metaphor for addiction. Active addiction is painful and destructive. It is often publicly humiliating for ourselves as well as our families. It leaves emotional and sometimes physical scars. Scars can be ugly and look painful long after the trauma. When that scar heals, it identifies us but now it represents strength, courage, honesty and grace. It’s that very scar that let’s others know, “if you are struggling with substance use or addictive patterns you can talk to me because I know where you are”. This is how we transform our pain into purpose, this is when our greatest liability becomes our greatest asset. This is when we teach people who don’t know, who likely don’t understand and we give them the opportunity to learn. When people understand and they Support this podcast
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    6 mins
  • Moments of Clarity

    Oct 13 2020
    My worse day turned out to be my best day. It was the day I had my moment of clarity. It was the day I woke up from my “story”, the story I told myself every day, the story that justified self-destructive behaviors. It was the day I woke up from my lie, the lie I had been telling myself for years. “My drinking doesn’t hurt anybody.” “If I ever get as bad as so in so, I’ll quit.” “I can quit anytime I want.” Up until that point, I had referred to myself as “a wine connoisseur with bad taste in men”. Since I never let the glass get empty, I was always on my first drink. The diet pills and cocaine were necessary to keep the weight in check, “everyone does that”. This is how I saw it and I believed it one hundred percent.  I believed it in the face of, and contrary to, a lot evidence.  I brushed off the many comments from people who loved me and tried to help me. I literally couldn’t see it even though, on some level, there were times I feared something was really very wrong with me. I saw myself as a victim and I lived my life through that filter. Drinking and self-medicating seemed to me to be the solution and not the problem.   For me, it was a quiet moment driving down a canyon road in one of the most beautiful places on earth, the Feather River Canyon in Northern California. It was after a long blackout drinking weekend in which I had managed to piss everyone I knew off, again. I was baffled and that was the beginning. Protected by my defensive “woe is me” victim story, a simple thought popped into my mind and it took root. The idea that maybe they were right, maybe my problems were due to my drinking. For years’ people had suggested this to me and I had completely dismissed it. Drinking was not my problem, people were my problem! It sincerely looked and felt that way to me. “If you had lived my life you would completely agree.” I would say as I explained my trials and tribulations to anyone who would listen. For some reason on that particular day, the thought “maybe they are right” just kept popping into my mind. I started remembering what I’d heard in the 12 step groups I had attend a few years prior. I had already been there but not because I needed help. I was there to support someone who really had a problem. I would say “I’m Liz and I’m a visitor.” I would think to myself, “this is so great for these people.” I did not see myself as one of them. As I drove down the canyon road, it was dawning on me that having a drinking problem explained a lot. A few more synchronicitic little miracles happened soon after and I found myself back in the rooms. I heard “You can’t see until you can see” and “you can’t hear until you can hear” and I knew exactly what they meant. Today I celebrate that day, October 13, 1986 was the day I woke up. That strange combination of pain, bewilderment and hope cracked my denial wide open and I have been on the most amazing journey ever since.  I'm Just Sayin' Elizabeth                       Support this podcast
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    11 mins
1-8 of 15 Episodes