Shane started experimenting with drugs and alcohol in high school smoking weed and drinking alcohol. By the age of 19 he had graduated to cocaine and crystal meth. By the grace of God, Shane realized quickly that crystal meth was a powerful drug and abandoned it. However, his alcoholism took over and soon he was drinking everyday putting his life and his marriage in jeopardy.
When he realized that he had completely lost control of his life he asked his wife for help and willingly went to a 30 day rehab. It was in rehab that he had the spiritual awakening that inspired him to help others. He decided to do service and hold himself accountable through the production of the That Sober Guy Podcast. Join us now as Shane takes us through his journey into recovery.
Clean Date: September 11, 2013
This episode was brought to you by Sober Nation.
Here are Shane’s SHAIR Podcast interview highlights and suggestions for the Newcomer:
Tell us about how life is today. Take us into your normal daily routine, including recovery.
Shane: Alright Omar. Thanks for the nice introduction as well. So a normal day for me, let’s see. First of all, life is great today. Life is actually great and as far as a day goes, you know I don’t mean to be graphic, but the first thing I do is I wake up and I take a shit and I bring my computer in there and I get down on it and I sit there in my office. My daughter will knock on the door and say “daddy what are you doing”. Mom will say “where’s daddy at” and my daughter will say “he’s in his office”. That’s the only spot with the family and that’s my little time. I definitely do that. I know it’s strange. It is part of my routine. I read a little bit, drink some coffee, get my day going, say a little prayer for the day, hit the gym on the certain days that I go to the gym or I’ll take a little walk in the morning just to try to clear my head. I guess it’s that same daily routine. I go to work, spend some time with the family at night and I just really try to stay grateful. Just really try to stay in the moment.
O: What’s your meeting routine look like?
Shane: You know, I actually do a Sunday morning, 8am That Sober Guy meeting. I do it online or you can call in and do it online. I am a big supporter of Alcohol Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous and I try to stay connected through the big book through my meetings and of course through my podcast. I get to interview a lot of interesting people and talk with a lot of people.
O: The Sunday meeting, is that AA based or NA based?
Shane: You know what? Here’s what I found. I kind of based it off the idea of Alcoholics Anonymous because that’s what I was taught. It has no affiliation with AA. It has no affiliation with NA and I always say that at the beginning of a meeting and it’s not meant to be a replacement to AA or NA because I think those are really the foundation for recovery. I don’t think anything can really replace those two things. What I have in mind for it, is a way for people to connect all over the world who maybe, the stigma of Alcoholics Anonymous was keeping them back. Well this is kind of a little door opening meeting and something to add to that arsenal of weapons that maybe we’re already using. Maybe someone doesn’t have any weapons that they’re using to combat this. Maybe this is something kind of like a podcast opening up the door. It’s not directly affiliated with either one.
What was keeping you from getting clean or staying clean when you first got introduced to recovery?
Shane: Myself. I like to say my only enemy is me. I’m the only one who stopped myself from allowing myself to get the help I needed and whether it was past experience or whether it was just making excuses. When I stood up and took responsibility, I was honest with myself and I said “here’s the situation”, that’s really when I was able to move forward and really reach out and admit. That was huge and it’s so relieving. I remember the day I said “I need help. I’m an alcoholic”. It was like this I don’t know what it was, but it was lifted out from my chest.
At what point did you have a spiritual awakening, that ‘aha’ moment in recovery when you accepted that you were powerless over drugs and alcohol, but for the first time had developed that hope that you could recover?
Shane: Well I think I already alluded to it about the Mark Lundholm experience when I heard him talking. I think that was really the first point. When I realized there was a reason that I was here and there was a reason that I’m supposed to get help and I’m supposed to get clean and sober and it was really regardless of what anyone else thought. That was kind of a hard thing too because we all care about what our families and our friends think. At the same time, we got to let that go if we really want to get the help that we need because that’s what it’s about, doing everything and really to give up everything to get clean, to get sober and live a better life. That moment when I heard that voice say “this is what you’re going to do. You’re here to help people”. I think that was the moment where I knew there was that hope and there was at least a purpose for me to be there.
Do you have a favorite book that you would recommend to a newcomer that you read in early recovery?
Shane: Yeah I actually had touched on it in early recovery but I was too lazy to really get into it “The Four Agreements” by Don Miguel Ruiz. That’s one of the best things that I’ve really read: being impeccable with your words, not making assumptions, personal responsibility and always doing your best. I try my best to live by those on a daily basis. It really does help to free you from some of the shame that we feel that we’re kind of bounded by on some days, some weeks and some months. Of course the big book of Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous. They have some of the best literature and some of the best teachings.
SUGGESTION’S FOR THE NEWCOMER!
“Don’t take things so seriously”
What is the best suggestion you have ever received?
Shane: The best suggestion? I guess there’s been quite a few. One of them would probably be to just lighten up. Don’t take things so seriously. Have fun. Smile a little bit. Laugh. I think for the longest time everything was always so serious and it really did kind of hinder my growth because that goes back to getting down on myself, being hard on myself so I think once I kind of realized that, I ask myself “is it really that big of a deal”. What am I going to do about it? Just remember to laugh. We’re here to laugh. We’re here to make people laugh. We’re here to make people smile. We’re here to be excited about life, to be happy. That really helped change some things in my life.
If you could give a newcomer only one suggestion, what would it be?
Shane: Progress not perfection. I know it’s kind of cliché, you hear it a lot. I hear it a lot. Sometimes I get tired of hearing it. I just want to say “shut up”, but at the same time it’s so true. You’ve got to take it one day at a time and just make a little bit of progress. You’re not going to be perfect. I’m far from perfect. I still do dumb things. I still say dumb stuff. I still don’t make perfect decisions and I never will, but as long as I’m working towards being a better person and just being myself and being honest with myself. I try to learn something new every day. If I can learn just one little thing a day, over a lifetime, that’s going to benefit me, my family, my friends, the work that I do, all of that. Just try to take it a little bit at a time. Not try to be perfect. Just try to make some progress.
Thanks again for your SHAIR Shane!
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Disclaimer – The opinions shared on this show reflect those of the individual speaker and not of any 12 step fellowship as a whole and though we discuss 12 step recovery and the impact it has had in our lives we do not