This week's podcast features guest host, women's leadership and empowerment coach, and long-time friend of Club Soda, Harriet Waley-Cohen. Harriet is joined by author and podcaster Janey Lee Grace and addiction consultant Ian Young. This inspirational trio discusses how sobriety has helped them and their clients to become more empowered.
Meet your Empowering Hosts
Harriet has been on her own sobriety journey for the last 18 years. Since she gave up drinking in 2002, she has been helping people realise personal empowerment and true potential in sobriety. Harriet comes at coaching from a very real place - she herself has had many life experiences, having recently survived breast cancer, all whilst being sober. You can find out more about Harriet's public speaking and coaching workshops on her website, or join her free Facebook page, Harriet's Inner Circle.
Janey Lee Grace
You may know Janey as being co-presenter on the UK’s biggest radio show, BBC Radio 2’s Steve Wright in the Afternoon. Janey also hosts her own podcast, Alcohol Free Life, and is an ambassador for the empowerment that sobriety can bring.
Janey is also the author of several books on Holistic Living, and her recent publication, 'Happy Healthy Sober: Ditch the booze and take control of your life' is available on Amazon now.
Ian knows recovery from the inside out. His struggle with drugs and alcohol gave him the insight to act; he's the founder of two of the largest drug rehabilitation services across the UK and Europe. Ian now lives in Phuket, Thailand, where he runs his private practice, Sober Services Global, as well as rehabilitation services in Southern Thailand. As you'll hear, empowerment has been a tool that Ian has found invaluable in supporting those in active addiction and their families.
Harriet Waley-Cohen 0:02
A very warm welcome to this latest episode of the Club Soda podcast. My name is Harriet Whaley, Cohen, and I'm your guest host today, and I have not had a drink since the first of October 2002, which is over 18 and a half years, another lifetime ago. And I'm joined today by two fabulous friends and colleagues of mine in gang who helped me in my early days of sobriety, and it's been a classmate ever since. And the fabulous Jamie Lee grace, who's a champion in her own way as well, in the, in the cyber field. So who am I? Well, actually, I've been, I've been linking up with Club Soda and helping them empower their members, people just like you ever since the launch of Club Soda, hosting workshops, such as how to be happier and healthier and have everything be more more more once you've given up drinking, rather than it feels like it's going to be less, less less, and have done all sorts of things with Club Soda over the last five, six years, separately to that I am a women's leadership and empowerment coach and speaker changing the way that women think, act and feel in their relationship with themselves, their bodies and their potential massively for the better. Through my public speaking workshops, my coaching programmes and products and those sorts of things. So that's a little bit about me. I'd love to hand over to each of you, my lovely guests to introduce yourselves as well. So ladies first Janie, do you want to introduce yourself?
Jamie Lee Grace 1:43
Yeah, thank you. It's lovely to be here. I have not as many years as you, but three and a half years just about now since I stopped drinking, which is sometimes I just I can't believe it. I was having a conversation with someone the other day. He said, I'm finally getting it. It's not that I can't have a drink. I don't want to drink. Wow, yeah. If you'd said that to me four years ago, I just could not have believed that that could be possible. So yes, I quit drinking three and a half years ago, I took a long time to kind of be brave enough to come out. But then when I did, I thought, well, I may as well just share this with everybody. So I did a TEDx talk called sobriety rocks, who knew? In 2019. And I host a platform called the sober Club, which is also a membership site where we focus really on what everything is the what's next for me, is that the thing? I'm always really passionate about the, you know, how do you kind of make the decision to stop drinking? How do you get through those early stages with as much ease as possible? And then how do you focus on you know, the holistic picture of the health and well being? And my books just come out as well? happy, healthy, sober. Ditch the booze? Yeah, no, it's great. It's, it's really tough bringing out a book in locked, because normally, I would be doing a lot of events. But But yeah, it's, it's great, because it's not just me. There's loads of other experts in the book. So almost whatever your area of interest when it relates to sort of health and well being in any way is probably in there.
Harriet Waley-Cohen 3:21
Brilliant. That sounds like a really important resource for people on their, on their newly sober journey. And actually, probably for people even further on as well. I'm sure there's lots in there. Oh, welcome, Jamie. And also now going to welcome the fabulous Ian young. He's in Thailand, where he now lives in Do you want to introduce yourself?
Ian Young 3:44
Hello, everybody. My name is Ian. I'm, I'm Harry's friend. I was around when Harriet was getting sober. And that's when we first met and I had a little out a few more months than she did. And we just became very close. And so I'm in my 21st year of sobriety, which absolutely amazes me. I was an active addiction for 13 to 16 years depending on how you look at my behaviour at school. I was an intravenous drug user, a homeless statistic or non statistic, and a chronic alcoholic. And I got sober fortunately, at the age of 29, and literally changed my life changed my whole direction. And what often had some success building some rehabs in the UK, then build a private practice that took me around the world, helping fairly affluent families with problematic sons, daughters, husbands, wives, parents, and designed kind of sober companion models in around Europe, and particularly London, and was I guess best known as an interventionist where I go in and create willingness in people who who weren't necessarily happy about stopping. So that was kind of my key skill. And then I've been busy A few years ago, three and a half years ago moved to Thailand. I actually have a rehab down here in Phuket, which I'm very proud of. But I then six, nine months ago moved to copan Yang, which is a kind of counterculture hippie Island, and had a massive or significantly sized, further spiritual experience, largely anticipated, largely exaggerated through ecstatic dancing, which is kind of like going to parties, absolutely sobering dancing. That's just taken me in a whole new kind of realm where I almost feel like I've gone back to my days of being an acoustic punk back in the late 80s, early 90s. But yet, here I am approaching 50 aches, and I now have a private practice on this island as well doing addiction consultancy up here. And Genoa, I think, above all, and beyond all of that. I'm happier now than I've ever been in any other part of my life. And I like what Janie just said, her friend said, it's been a long time since I've missed drinking. I get to choose on a daily basis to enjoy life sober. without, you know, Rose tinting what's going on around me. Life's beautiful. I'm happy.
Harriet Waley-Cohen 6:31
are in not so lovely to hear. And certainly from all your pictures. But I see you do look incredibly content, happy sometimes. Almost always lovely beach pictures. It's Yeah, it's gorgeous to have have you here. Thanks for joining. So our topic today is all about becoming more empowered, or empowered at all, once you've stopped drinking. And I thought it would be useful to start with breaking down what does it actually mean to be empowered. And I guess the word power is the key bit there. And actually, when you go back and look at the etymology, the root meaning of the word power, it doesn't mean to be able to dominate something, it just means to be able to do something. So power is just about being able to do stuff. And and I think there's there's just vast amounts that I could not do back in the old drinking and party days, or the miserable last few years, as well as my drinking and drug taking. And there's so much that I can do now. Whether that, yeah, just so much. And when I think back to how disempowered or their lack of power, the lack of ability to do stuff that I had, it was quite terrifying. In fact, the further I get away from it, the more I'm amazed that I'm alive, quite frankly, I just couldn't, couldn't feed myself, didn't wash my hair for a few months at one point, couldn't show up for anything, couldn't manage my money, couldn't, couldn't, just couldn't do anything. I was not a productive member of society. And I certainly couldn't take care of myself. There was such as a total lack of adulting and a real lack of happiness and joy. It was all pretty damn miserable. And I don't think that's what life is all about. What were each of your experiences with the the disempowerment that that drinking brought along with it?
Jamie Lee Grace 8:43
Should I jump in first? I mean, I think, yeah, yeah. I mean, I didn't ever have a rock bottom moment. You know, I don't think everyone does, of course. And so I was, you know, that the typical grey area drinker, as we now know, the term to be, you know, I wasn't at rock bottom, I was functioning perfectly well. I was even, you know, relatively healthy, because of all the other stuff I did. I was kind of Queen of natural health. So I'm grateful for that, because it probably sort of saved me really. So so nobody knew that there were any issues at all. I didn't ever miss a day off work. Nobody knew I had a problem in inverted commas. But I knew because I was waking up at 3am absolutely hating myself. And although nobody else would have would have noticed, for me, you know, this, this whole concept of impairment it's really interesting, because when I look back, I realised that although I was in inverted commas functioning, and I was, you know, fairly energetic person, and I was doing loads of stuff. Actually, what was going on within was I was becoming smaller and smaller. My world was kind of imploding. It was the it was lots of little things. It was nothing massive. It was just that I was becoming really fearful and really anxious about stuff that hadn't worried me before, it was my sense of guilt over what messages I was sending to my kids, particularly, you know, teenagers? It was the, it was the lack of authenticity, you know, someone who was a queen of natural health. I've been writing books on holistic health. Yes. You know, that's my thing. And also, you know, not just that I'm a Hay House author, and I was interviewing every guru, and there was on meditation and self care and self love
Harriet Waley-Cohen 10:31
information. Exactly. I
Jamie Lee Grace 10:33
mean, there was nothing that I didn't know about self love self care about empowerment. And yeah, actually, it wasn't true for me. So I was I, you know, there was a real, real kind of sense of, of the elephant in the room the whole time. So and that went on for years. And it's only, you know, now that it's removed, it's only once it had gone, that I was genuinely able to, to look this stuff in the eye and to realise what self love might possibly mean. And the very first time I could ever sit in meditation, you know, because before, of course, it was always a million other things to do. It's very uncomfortable to sit with yourself when you are not authentic with who you really are. So for me Becoming Empowered, has meant I'm able to be authentic. That doesn't mean I get everything right. Of course, you know, I'm grateful that my I called my website imperfectly natural, because, you know, I don't get everything right. But, but it's meant that I can finally step into my power step into who I'm really meant to be. So it has been literally empowering. And I really do think that sobriety is is a superpower, it enables you to, to be who you're meant to be. And of course, that's different for everyone. But I think for most people, it gives you clarity, it gives you an insight, it gives you back, as you mentioned that that hope that joy, the word joy is such an interesting one, because I don't think I'd used it since I was, I don't know, either a child or in church. I hadn't, I didn't really know what that word meant. It certainly wasn't anything I'd experienced as an adult. So yeah, that's, that's, that's, you know, empowerment. For me. It's amazing.
Harriet Waley-Cohen 12:20
What I'm loving, is that actually, the distinction you're making between your inner world because actually, on the outside, everything looked really quite shiny and together, and you were successful, because there's often a misconception isn't there? That problem drinkers, you know, unless you're sat on a park bench exam, and you've lost everything, then there's no need to change anything, but actually, on the inside, things weren't great for you at all. And that was absolutely my experience as well. And I adore what you say about authenticity, I do think that sobriety have been a massive journey about coming home to who I truly am. And honouring that, that really knowing who I am and honouring that. And that that's actually, you know, deeply where the self worth comes from, is saying, This is who I am, and it's okay to be me, rather than gonna try and pretend I'm gonna suppress how I'm feeling or what's what's going on for me. And, and like you say, joy, I thought joy was all about, you know, joy and hallelujah. It was a thing for people that weren't like me. Yeah, exactly. Yeah, yeah. But I think joy now, I mean, it was great theory and talking about ecstatic dance, and maybe he'll talk about that in a minute. But the joy of being able to be silly, and being relaxed, and now having the ability or the power, whatever word you want to use, to be frivolous, and to let go. Because actually, everything was so serious, and so scary and so tight, and so fearful. I was just so afraid of what other people thought of me, but now I'm like, well, this is who I am. And I be silly. And I can be like, like, be joyful. And it's wonderful. Yeah, no, the inner the inner experience is the major change, you know, I mean, when I when I stopped drinking, I was I did have a quite a flashy looking job in banking. I had a flat that I owned, and, you know, had food in the fridge is certainly to all intents and purposes to anyone who didn't know me looking in bit like you It didn't look like, you know, certainly wasn't on a park bench. We're not much anyway. Yeah, in that you want to check in, I'm sure you've got a lot to say on that.
Ian Young 14:30
Well, I am the absolute opposite of that. And insofar as, by the time I found sobriety, everybody knew I needed it. I was falling apart in all directions and and had been deteriorating for a few years. But it is worth saying that I was a functioning heroin addict for four of my seven years. Most people never knew that I was using heroin at all. They they assumed that I was using cocaine and stimulants. But, but that wasn't that wasn't the case. I kind of got high on on on heroin, but what I really want to talk about is the point that Janie raised. I love how passionate Janie is with her sobriety, her recovery. For me. It was just like an absolute new lease of life. It was like an opportunity that I could reinvent myself. But I didn't need to reinvent myself. What happened was, I as I became sober, and I found courage and faith in that journey, and I liked what I felt, I became the person that I was destined to be all along. It was like, I had to I distracted my my core or my ci or myself from being who I was destined to be. By going down the these get what getting stuck in my addiction, becoming selfish, self centred, and angry, and lonely and hurtful and hateful. And just that just removed me from who I was meant to be. And getting sober, I was able to rediscover exactly who I was led, who I who I was born to be in a spiritual way, and a human way that I became the Aeon that I was destined to be. And over the years, I've just gotten more and more into exploring the who, who I am, and, and being who I want to be, or who I was destined to be. Which is why I've been so excited in this past sort of six, nine months, because I've got, I've had this this next stage of this journey. And I'm not saying that everyone has to wait 20 years before it happens. But this is just when it's happened to me. And now I feel like I'm not only am I the person that I was destined to be, but I'm really the person that I want to be. And I'm living the life that I believe in. It's almost like a mixture of those, those ambitions and goals and dreams I had as a young teenager that were taken from me later on, as I as I got distracted too much by by drinking drugs, and re re opening all of those avenues. So I feel I still feel like I'm living a life of in utopia, like a dreamer. Like everything is just going the way that I want it to be. And it's kind of been just one result of just one each day at a time, just continuing to do the right thing. My goal on any given day, I was just in a session with a guy is about being a good guy, not a bad boy, how do I move along a linear line towards being a good guy, rather than a bad boy, what's the next best thing I can do to be my authentic self. And that is the power that I believe that we're looking to talk about in this thing, I had lost that power, that drugs had ripped me of that power to be me. My alcoholism stopped me from progressing in any area of my life, around who I dreamt of, and who all my dreams and goals and aspirations were just taken away, as my life got smaller and smaller and smaller, and ended up in a squat in West London, you know, unable really to leave the little squat except to go and buy and sell drugs, or to go and commit petty crime. And yeah, I'm not that I was never born to be that person. And sobriety has gave me you know, the opportunity to literally write a new book, and start my life again, in the phrase that is a bit corny is a life beyond my wildest dreams. But it's been beyond anything I could have dreamt of. It's just been this dream that I had, when I was a kid, I get to be that person. So I'm not
Harriet Waley-Cohen 18:41
gonna make it sound so appealing, and so fabulous. You really do. And you know what, that was something even when I very first met you, you already had that incredible joy and magic about you, you've always been someone who has radiated the potential, you know, the positive potential that comes with that huge life change. And, you know, I think I think I felt the same way I felt like it was, it was the chance to start over and especially during my late teens and early 20s. Before I turn things around, I kept thinking general, I wish I could go back to when I was 18. And start again, where I wish I could just go back a couple of years, and then I would make these different decisions. And interestingly enough, I've not, I've not felt that way at all since since I've got sober. I've never I've not really had any regrets, which is really interesting. I'm a big fan
Ian Young 19:41
of if you're not happy with what's going on, change it. If you're not if you're doing something isn't giving you pleasure isn't making you happy isn't bringing you wealth or making your family happy or isn't contributing to society or making something towards your legs. Do something about that take action. Don't rest on your laurels. Don't sit still But make changes Be the change that you want to see in the outside world and within. And I don't know if that comes naturally to people, but it's just a power that that drives me to manifest change in myself and those around me. I'm not scared
Harriet Waley-Cohen 20:16
of that it, it actually really resonates me with what Jamie was saying, which is this permission to become yourself and the permission to honour yourself. Yeah, yeah, I mean, Jenny, do you feel that this is for you is this incredible new chapter as well as new possibility of just being being the genie you will always hear to be?
Jamie Lee Grace 20:42
Yeah, I really genuinely do. I do feel that this is the most massive thing that you can ever do. I don't think you can equate it with, oh, I've changed my diet, or, you know, I've started a fitness regime, it's something else completely underpins everything. And what I really love is the fact that you guys have been sober for years and years and years and years. And it's still a thing. And I love that because, you know, when I first I think when I got to about I was I was coming up to a year, I had these kind of thoughts, I almost wonder whether it might be a bit flat now then is that it now I've done all the first You know, I've had the first party sober, and the first birthday and etc. But of course, that's not the reality, the reality is it gets better. Because you're unwrapping all these other layers, and you know, once you've kind of gone through the first and you kind of dealt with all the angst and stuff, you can then start to really get into so many other things. I've got sober club members who I mean, just to watch them kind of blossom, it's been absolutely incredible. I've got like a mother hen, you know, I see these these these women, this one woman who is I think she's just known almost a year, or just over a year sober. And, and literally, the transformation in her in every sense is incredible, both both physically and emotionally and in her kind of, in the way she is with other people in her relationships. But also, she's gone from being a kind of timid, little mouse kind of person who was really genuinely scared of her own shadow, to doing a creative writing course, and focusing on public speaking and growing her business. And just everything has changed. And, and that's one of the things I find. So magical people, people literally find themselves, and they get to step into what it is they they want, they always wanted to do, or that little, that little goal or dream that they've maybe had since since childhood, you can finally get the energy to go after it.
Harriet Waley-Cohen 22:41
Yeah. And I think one of the things that that was certainly true for me, and that I see with lots of people, in fact, probably almost everyone who has changed their drinking, is that we don't realise quite how disempowered we were. And until you've got some sobriety under your belt, and then you can see the contrast. It's almost like you know, the boiled frog analogy, but when you're in in the thick of it, you don't really realise quite how incrementally your power to have the life you want feel the way you want have the career health relationships, find all of that kind of thing has slipped away to the point where it's become pretty, pretty dull and grey and awful. And then it's not all of a sudden there's it doesn't come back within the first week. In fact, there's a period of real readjustment and it can be a bit hairy. But as time goes on, the sense of what's possible, actually gets bigger and bigger, it doesn't get boring at all, it just gets more and more exciting because you realise, well I have any way that I can rely on myself that I can or so many different things that now make everything possible. And it really is Yeah, I mean, you know, in the night we are I suppose, you know, old timers, as they call us. I don't feel like an old timer. I'm still in my 40s but it is the foundation from which everything else becomes possible. It really is. And I think that's so important to remember is that, you know without that with all of this stuff, would it would it be possible that I be a great man, would I be able to run a place that would I be able to have clean, clean hair this morning, who the hell knows?
Jamie Lee Grace 25:10
I mean, I'm happy to share something I don't want to hog the conversation. But I mean, in terms of, I find this a really interesting one, because I think some people actually are fearful of stopping drinking, because they know that they're going to have to look at stuff they don't want to look at. You know, because because most of us are so yeah, we're so kind of emotionally immature, because we've not had to deal with any of this stuff, really, because we've just, we've just numbed it out, whenever any of its come up, we really are not used to handling our emotions very, very well. And so that's
Harriet Waley-Cohen 25:49
why for a lot of people drinking was their solution wasn't. So actually people don't have a drinking problem. They have a drinking solution. That's exactly and then you've got to find a new solution. And that's where kind of digging in and going like I will do this work so that I don't need a drinking solution.
Jamie Lee Grace 26:05
Yeah, exactly. So I think I think people are sometimes fearful. I mean, people have actually said to me, clients who actually said to me, you know, if I'm just going to stop for a while, but I, you know, I won't be able to continue to not drink because what will happen when, you know, x occurs in my family or whatever. And so it can, it can seem really, really scary because you know, you're going to have to see everything you'll get to see the good and the bad, you know, it's glorious technicolour, but, of course, that has the crap there as well. So, so the definitely is that, and I think some people can also get absolutely blindsided by the, by the enormity of of the old stuff, and the and the baggage, once you stop drinking, you know, it can feel very raw. I mean, what, what I always recommend is that, actually, don't try and deal with that too soon, you can't do it, I don't believe in the first few months, because you're too fragile. You know, you have to recover. First, you really do you have to build up your own reserves. And you know, really just step into that new identity and get yourself well. You can't start sort of, you know, writing letters of regret and digging into all the hard stuff. But eventually, you do become so much more resilient. And it's hard to believe when at the beginning when you feel so raw and so emotional. But over time, I've seen it happen many times people have, you know, they've taken their time, but eventually, they've, they've, they've felt ready to face something really, really difficult in whatever way that is, whether it's whether it's needing counselling or or therapeutic work or, or, or facing a family member, whatever it is asking for forgiveness, you know that there are many, many things that people need to address, but when they feel ready, they have a different sense of resilience. And again, they come into it with that, from that authentic place. And from that place of well of, you know, of loving themselves and loving everyone else. There's a there's just more kindness around when people are so bad. So it doesn't make you perfect, but it does make you real and, and you know, I've seen it in so many cases, people's relationships have been healed, you know, really awful things that they never ever thought would, would come about have have actually been healed. And they've they have managed to overcome massive stuff from from the past from from this, this place of, of being authentic.
Harriet Waley-Cohen 28:45
Yeah, yeah. Beautiful in
Ian Young 28:49
that there's, there's another side to the paths that block people in my observation, just to add, rather than to say that there's something different, but there's something as well, that that I come across, which is people's fear of being bored or being boring, leaving without alcohol, whatever, that they're substances, that they're suddenly they're going to be bored in their life, they're not going to be the life and soul of a party anymore, that somehow Saturday night is out. I'm not going to be able to drink on my wedding, I'm not going to have champagne, I'm not going to be able to do this, I'm not going to be that and that they immediately think of all the great times that they've had on booze, and announced that they couldn't possibly dream of living a life without those moments and those features when the reality often is that a those moments were so small and fleeting, and they're simple euphoric memories. So you remember the time when when you had a great time on the dance floor and you felt like you were the the most beautiful handsome person on the in the world. That was one night 16 years ago, and you're still Holding on to that memory despite the fact that last week you were vomiting down your shirt on the same disk attack, or whatever it is, people seem to hold on to these memories that were great. And they forget about these dreadful, humiliating moments where, where they've let themselves down. And and they use that in their own mind as an excuse why they're scared to stop drinking, in case they never have these moments again. And and that's maybe why I'm just so passionate, or why I get so excited about my life in recovery is because it's been nothing like that. I had many, many humiliating and shameful moments where I let myself down, I let my friends down and let my family down. I let my I was a DJ, and I used to not turn up to gigs anymore because I was too focused on getting drunk. You know, I watched my whole career just fall apart. And yet my head was telling me where I can't stop drinking, because because I might have to give up DJ again. But yeah, I'd already sabotaged most of that. And yeah, once I actually took that, that, that, that risk, or I took that leap of faith that to know, anything's going to be better than this now, life has been so much more than than than the fear of those memories of things I won't do, I can, I can still go out to a rave and dance until the sun comes up in the morning. I work in Glastonbury, I work in the all night fields, and I go to bed about an hour after the field shuts. So about 730 in the morning, I can do things today I can be amongst people drinking people getting high, I can roll joints for people because I know how how to roll a decent joint and they don't, you know, I don't have that is neutralised or I have to smoke a joint and then have to drop an E, I don't have to go on the pace. I am neutral around it all. And yet, I get to do exactly the same things as I always wanted to do before and probably was failing out because I was too drunk to to stand up or to stone to remember or too scared to leave my house because I was too busy holding on to the next line of cocaine. So actually, my life got smaller and smaller and smaller in my addiction. And in my recovery, my life has got bigger and bigger and bigger. I like to be like there's a movie with Jim Carrey, where he just says yes to everything. And that guy, opportunity knocks something falls in front of me and I go Yes, I'll ever go there. I don't mind. I am I am that idiot that jumped out of an aeroplane with a parachute 80,000 feet, because someone said let's do this. And it was exhilarating. But I'd never do it again. But I'm proud to say that I wasn't scared to do it in the first place. I walked up Mount Kilimanjaro because someone said, Let's do this. I said all right then. And it was so great, I then had to go back the next year and take 11 of my friends up there just to show them the sunrise. So I'm not scared to take opportunities. But these things I would never have had the courage to do when I was in my addiction. And more importantly, I would have been unable to go anywhere near these these achievements. Because I would have been unable to leave the comfort or the safety of my own house in case I was to run out of booze or drugs in my life. And my world just got so small ages 2627 28 into 29, that there is no quality to any sort of life. sobriety gives us that ability to be and do anything that we put our mind to. As long as you don't want to be a drug dealer, that would be foolish.
Harriet Waley-Cohen 33:34
And that is empowerment. That really is. And that's totally my experience as well. I mean, we you know, we were at Glastonbury together. I remember I think it was 2003. And we had a great time. Just, as you say the amount of things that I've been able to do, and have the best time ever, that I have not been could never have done could never have done before. I think I had a sort of false confidence. But at the beginning of my drinking and drug taking I had a kind of gave me the false bravado. But by the end, there were there was absolutely none of that even sometimes getting from one room to the next room in my damp basement flats in North London was was too difficult, let alone all of the incredible things that you shared about. And yeah, and I think it is important to focus on that, that it's not just about you know, working through the painful stuff. It's embracing the incredible pneus of life and going for it and just saying yes to new things, and seeing where that takes you and coming back to who you really are and finding out who you really are and being willing to take risks and it doesn't matter. If it doesn't work out or it doesn't you know, I will never go to Glastonbury again. My dad always says the two kinds of fools those who've never done something and those who've done it more than one It's not sort of how I feel about Blasberg. But But you know, I still did it. I still was like, Yeah, I can do that. I know that I can get through anything, I can try anything, get through anything. And these are the real, real joys without a doubt, without a doubt, and not only that, just being able to get through when I've got through some, some quite difficult things like breast cancer sober. And and it's been a while, you know, all the stuff I've learned in my sobriety has actually helped me enormously. And I remember thinking about, you know, why is this happening to me, because I live off green smoothies and haven't had a drink in so many, you know, well over a decade, and blah, blah, blah, all this sort of stuff. And then someone helpfully pointed out to me, imagine how much worse this might have been, if you had, you know, if you were still doing all the old stuff, and I was like, Oh, right. Yes. Okay. And I guess that's another thing, the ability to think differently about things to think in a way that turns me from being a victim to being empowered, and to make the most out of situations. Yeah, yeah. So if for any listeners out there who might be thinking that they're not quite ready to go super raving or climb Kilimanjaro, and they're feeling like their feelings, kind of stuck. What tips would you have? What practical things like if you're ever either of you in a place where you feel disempowered or stock? or unsure? What What do you do that helps you get unstuck and get back to that place or forge that place of empowerment? Janie?
Jamie Lee Grace 36:39
I think for me, it's getting out into nature really makes all the difference. You know, there's something very healing about just being this some trees, or for me, it's the CEO, I absolutely love the See, sadly, I don't live near it, which is not great. But I but I do now, you know, factor in that kind of self care and literally put it in my diary so that I go regularly, so that I get my kind of fix of the see. But I think it's a case of finding what your resources are, what is it that that allows you to recharge your batteries. nature does it for a lot of people, but I think find whatever it is, and and, and put it in the diary. But most of us are so busy that we spend all of our time doing stuff the whole time. But we don't actually pause and say, Well, what do I need to recharge. And I think when you do sort of go off and do whatever recharges you without your headphones in without, you know answering emails, kind of preferably don't even take your phone, you can get back in touch with what's really going on. Because there will be a voice that tells you what the right thing is to do. And have been willing to listen to it, but you can't hear it. When you're in the minute shy. We're constantly answering emails when you wake up. And the very first thing you do is scroll through your phone when you're constantly on social media or, or you know or whatever it is you do with your life when you if you can't, if you can't take 20 minutes out to go and walk by some trees, you're going to find it really difficult to listen to the voice inside you.
Harriet Waley-Cohen 38:10
Yeah, and I love that. I mean I for me being out in nature, especially without my phone and with my precious crazy doggo who is one of the real gifts and joys of sobriety be able to look after a little preacher who adores me. But when I'm out in nature, I'm reminded of the abundance that there is in the world and that everything is unfolding perfectly, and that everything has been taken care of and that nature is just doing its thing. And that actually I sometimes I don't need to push so hard to try and make things happen. I can just let it unfold as the seasons do. And I'm a huge fan and I'm lucky I live in a tiny village in the countryside and and it's really easy for me to, to go and hug trees or to walk in the forest or any of those things, and it does make a huge difference. And what you just said about self care about recharging our batteries, and I often say to people, you know, self cares a lot more than baths and candles, although it can sometimes be baths and candles, but it's it's on the emotional level, the physical level, the spiritual level, the social level, for many different levels, to self care. And above all else, it's building a life that you don't need to escape from. And that sense of being able to just be with yourself and know that all as well. Yeah. And what would you say?
Ian Young 39:29
Well, I love both of your answers. And I think that for me is part of it that you're I'm fortunate that I live on the border of a jungle about a kilometre from a gorgeous beach, and largely 30 to 35 degree heat every day. I do a lot of hiking I go running most mornings I also do Pilates. I opted against yoga. And I think when you ask the question, what is it that I need to do to bring about a shift when I'm in a place of feeling disempowered? I think about how I stand still when I shake my body and it's almost a fizzy Cool movement that shifts me out of that powerless internal state. I think Tony Robbins says it, the better. He says that motion changes emotion. So when I move my body, I change my emotional state. And so by actively or being active in my life going running, or whatever it is, every morning, I'm already setting myself up for a day of empowerment. But if I do get to any point in my day where stuff goes down in my head sinks, or I get to put a despair, I just remember that I can click my fingers, and I can start my day again. And I don't have to stay in that place. But I can, I have the ability to change, I don't have to be depressed, if I don't want to be I can choose to Okay, park that that episode, predict to one side, remember to write down what action I'm going to take to resolve it, but then get on with my day, and I'm returned to a place of fulfilment and joy. And yeah, maybe have a little dance by myself. Sometimes, I am constantly surrounded by music, if I don't play my music on my computer that I put my headphones in. And music is a mood altering substance for me or mood altering thing for me. Yeah, I'm constantly seeking ways of feeling more more empowered. But that doesn't mean I don't get down moments down times, even down days. But I do have the ability to shake myself out of it. So for me, I think it's a physical reaction to that emotional place that shifts me. Does that make sense? Yeah.
Harriet Waley-Cohen 41:35
Oh, completely. Yeah, yeah. And I actually even made a, I'm just coming to the end of teaching another round of one of my signature courses that turn your inner critic into an inner cheerleader course. And as part of everyone welcoming in their cheerleaders, we've collectively created a playlist, the inner cheerleader playlist, which is literally almost 50 really empowering and uplifting songs. And every single one of them, I could just walk it on and have a dance just for three minutes is all it takes, and feel fantastic and feel different. And sometimes it doesn't need to be that you have to do something incredibly serious to become empowered. You can put some apple on and dance like aleni, or whatever your version of that is. Yeah, yeah. Just get just moving, not staying, staying stuck. You know, if you stay if you're going through a hard time, don't stop, keep going. Going come out the other end. Yeah, well, it's not that we're coming to the end of our time together. Thank you so much to both of you. I'd love to, I'd love to be able to share with with the audience listening, how they can stay in touch with you. And I know there'll be some links. For me, I would say Come and join my free Facebook group which is called Harriet's inner circle. And how can people stay in touch with you?
Ian Young 43:02
He and underscore sober is my Instagram or I think my Facebook page which is in young kpg for copain Yang is my addiction consultancy over here. But I don't know just Google Ian young addiction if you need any help and you'll find me all over the place. I have sober services and I have a rehab in Phuket, Phuket Addiction Recovery clinic, which is really name good name, the park, and I'm just I'm quite easy to find. Just me as a friend. I maxed out a long time ago.
Harriet Waley-Cohen 43:36
Brilliant. Thank you. And Jamie, um, how can people stay in touch with you? And also where can they get your amazing book that you mentioned at the beginning?
Jamie Lee Grace 43:46
Yeah, it's called happy, healthy, sober. You can get it in all the usual places, possibly even bookshops. You knows but certainly all the usual online stores. You can find me at the sober club calm. That's everything I do is there and on social media. It's very easy. It's just at Jamie Lee grace.
Harriet Waley-Cohen 44:04
Amazing. Amazing. Fantastic. Well, I think with that we'll say it's a wrap. And thanks for listening everybody today This has been the Club Soda podcast with myself Harriet Whaley CO in my lovely guests in young and Jamie Lee grace Have a great day
Ian Young 44:23
called Green crab.
Unknown Speaker 44:44
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