The Whole View, Season 3, Episode 92: Unbottled Potential for Dry January w/ Amanda Kuda

Stacy talks to personal development coach Amanda Kuda who shares tools and encouragement to examine the role of alcohol in our lives. With the end of the year approaching, many of us are thinking about our goals for the next year, and, the fact is, you don’t need to have a drinking problem for alcohol to be holding you back! Whether you’re looking to give “Dry January” a try or are ready to fully commit to an alcohol-free life, this episode brings a compassionate and real look at how sobriety can benefit everyone.

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Key Takeaways 

Introductions

  • Amanda is a sober personal development coach who found drinking left her feeling unfulfilled in her relationships and more. She tried a Dry January in 2017 and hasn’t been alcohol-free ever since! Amanda says it’s the single most beneficial and transformational decision she’s ever made.
  • She has a Master of Art in Communication, is holds certifications as a Holistic Life Coach (University of Wellness), Gray Area Drinking Coach and Breathwork & Meditation Teacher (Academy of Breath).
  • In addition to 1:1 coaching, Amanda and shares her knowledge and techniques for elective sobriety on her blog, podcasts, and social media!

Unbottled Potential for Dry January

  • Stacy and Amanda both share their stories about why they chose to go alcohol-free or be “electively” sober (not related to a drinking problem or addiction). Often alcohol would magnify and just postpone feelings, anxiety, etc.
  • You deserve to feel good all the time! Amanda compares alcohol to a subpar romantic relationship. You are probably best to go to no contact while you get stuff together while you go to therapy and work one reorganizing your nervous system.
  • Amanda notes that it’s important to recognize if you have moderation or abstaining tendencies (from Gretchen Rubin’s work). The power of restriction may actually feel free versus spending all of your energy and brain power trying to moderate.
  • Changing your relationship with alcohol for most people who aren’t addicted is less about abstaining and mostly about learning really productive, actual coping strategies.
  • The power of suggestion can be strong. If you are the first in your friend group or social circle to try sobriety, it can feel lonely. Stacy and Amanda share stories of their decisions actually “trickling down” to other people in their life.
  • If the removal of alcohol is what starts to erode a relationship, that’s likely not the thing that started to erode it.

Next Steps

  • If you are hoping to do a Dry January, commit and make it non-negotiable and make it your “main thing”. If you have any other goals those will be easier once you’ve removed alcohol.
  • Don’t try to overhaul your life and quit alcohol at the same time, even if you’re just taking a break. Everything else will fall into place once you get into that rhythm.
  • Implement some tools when you are in an emotional state that you would normally drink: Deep breaths, stand in the sunshine, put your feet in the grass, etc. Sometimes our brain can be so resistant to tools like these because they feel too easy.
  • Don’t live in secrecy, share what you’re doing! So create a script to communicate both literally and metaphorically to yourself and others what you are doing:
    • State the fact with a timefame: “I’m not drinking right now.”
    • Deliver with confidence and clarity! Don’t lie or give something that is wishy-washy (“I’m not drinking because I have to drive”)
    • Offer an inarguable reason why: “Alcohol makes me feel…” Your feelings aren’t something to argue over.
    • If there are more questions, you can choose to have those conversations if you wish.

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Note: Stacy and her guests are not medical professionals. This podcast is for general educational purposes and NOT intended to diagnose, advise, or treat any physical or mental illness. We always recommend you consult a licensed service provider.

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