On today’s episode of The SHAIR Podcast is my very first episode of the O-Zone, where I host a new featured show on InRecovery Radio brought to you by the Star Worldwide Network studios in Scottsdale, Arizona and produced by Bill Gates. Today were going to be interviewing Daniella Park. Daniella is the founder of Doing It Sober clothing company. Join us now as she takes us through her battle with Drug Addiction and her Journey into recovery.
Clean Date: September 11th, 2006
Omar: So tell us, Daniella, about this beautiful clothing line you have here. I’m looking at your website. I see a lot of beautiful women wearing beautiful clothing. Tell us about your clothing line, I’m so curious and I’m sure our listeners are too.
Daniella: When I got sober back in 06 … I’ve always been very creative. I’m a painter, just creator. I like to make all sorts of things, lots of folk art, different unique things, but I also have enjoyed coming up with ways that I can motivate people and carry a message of just hope. Even when I didn’t know what hope was, I still had the … I always had it in me. I always wanted to see the good in people. I wanted people to be happy. I wanted them to smile, basically. Having the two combination and then getting sober, I thought, “Wow, what a cool thing. Maybe I should do my own clothing line.” I wanted to do all sorts of things when I got sober, a little bit of everything. I was just very excited to actually be able to start living again. I had an idea, and I started making clothes. This was about maybe 2008.
It wasn’t good timing. I was renting a room, and I had a job at a corporate company, and there was a lot of pressure. It was a sales job, and I really hated it, because I had to knock on doors and drive my car all over Los Angeles. It was just hard, and so it just kind of went away. I lost my passion, and then God kind of revealed more to me, and I made a goal list. I said, “Oh my goodness, I need to make a goal list.” Every six months I make my goals. I write them in affirmation form, and I look at them almost every day if possible. They’re right where I sit at my desk. One of the goals was, I’m going to prove create two designs for a T-shirt and have them printed and ready to ship by this date.
I didn’t have a name. I didn’t have any ideas of what it was going to be. I kept looking on the Internet for months, what should I name it, what should I name it? I couldn’t figure out anything. Everything I wanted, one of the names was taken on Facebook, and one was taken on the website. I wanted it to all the kind of together as far as social media and the website and everything so it would be easy. Finally I just said, “Oh, screw it I’ll do Doing It Sober.” It’s the only one that’s available.
Then I left it alone for a couple more months. I signed up for all the different accounts, and bought the website and just kind of let it sit there. Then all of a sudden something just kind of happened with, one of my neighbors had mentioned, “Oh yeah, my family, we have a T-shirt silkscreen shop.” I thought, “Wow, what a great idea. Maybe I can get my designs going.” Then from there, it just kind of … Wow, what a journey. I mean blood, sweat, and tears.
I really didn’t have much money and still don’t, but I figured I’m pretty smart. I could try to figure out everything myself. It was very difficult to learn the whole process of making the clothes, and buying the clothes, and figuring out how many sizes of what and what would be attractive to the followers and the people. That I kind of had a natural talent for. That’s what I believe. But the other aspect of it, I knew nothing about T-shirts. I’d been in marketing, PR, I was an actress, stunt woman, probably too many careers in my life.
I started this clothing thing, and for the first two months, I didn’t put out any products. I just basically decided I was going to start marketing the name. I started pushing out some photos. I was really into the Indian, kind of Native American look. I really love horses and others. I would take these photos, and I would attach different sayings, and I would update people on what was happening, and all of a sudden, I started getting a following on Instagram. I have to tell you, Instagram is the coolest place on the planet. I love it.
It’s become such a great place for people to hook up and get inspiration. I started putting up some updates, and going through the process of trying to get these shirts made, and it was tedious, it was hard, and people kind of screwed me over. I lost some money, and then I finally decided “Okay, I’m not going to have this shirt out before the date that I want to have it out,” so I went online, I made shirt, and I just ordered it. I was like, “You know what? I’m just going to order it,” and it was 4th of July weekend 2014. That weekend I released my [inaudible 00:06:28] shirt, which is the American flag, “Doing it sober. Sobriety is a journey, not a destination,” and that really just happened to be a shirt that people really loved, and people started buying it, and the next thing you know, they’re wearing their shirts, all of them on 4th of July, taking pictures, sending me the photos. It was a cool thing, and it just kind of grew from there.
Omar: That’s absolutely beautiful. I love stories like this. There’s so many people out there that don’t know where to begin or what to do, and it’s all about your intentions, setting your intentions, actually writing down your goals, turning them into affirmations, and setting deadlines for yourself. I think for many of us who have any level of success with anything that we’ve launched, it started with that sort of a process, so I love where you ran with that.
Now, I have a few questions for you. Ready?
Omar: Okay, good. This is back in … You got sober in 2006, right?
Daniella: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Omar: We’re talking ten years? Did you just celebrate ten years?
Daniella: I’ll be ten years this year on September 11th.
Omar: Oh my goodness, 9/11, wow. That’s a powerful clean date. You’re coming up on ten years. You were two years clean and sober when you first started this project. Now, the stigma behind alcoholism and addiction, especially because of social media, has changed dramatically over the past few years, but what was it like back then, when you were first starting to promote the idea of sober living, but actually on a t shirt, when there’s so much talk about anonymity?
Daniella: Back then I really didn’t put anything on the shirt that had to do with recover. I didn’t make anything. I just kind of had ideas, but back then it was a lot different. Even just the few years that have gone by, the anonymity thing, the group that I was part of, I’ve since moved, but the group that I was part of, a big giant in an area here in California, was very very much all about anonymity, and something like this would to a lot of people just be very almost repulsive to some, that I would be trying to start something like this, and that was one of the reasons I didn’t follow through the first time was not just because I didn’t really have the money or the time. It really just wasn’t the right time. Divinely, I feel like everything was going against me at the time, so I just gave up.
The anonymity thing has always been huge. I get emails all the time with people saying, “Have you thought about the anonymity?” and all these kind of questions, just asking me different questions about breaking anonymity, and I truly believe that things have changed. I am a strong member of Alcoholics Anonymous currently. I sponsor. I go to meetings. I work on the committee at the convention every year here in Ventura County, and people love my stuff, and I do promote my company on a large level, and I’m online. I sell AA products, Narcotics Anonymous, Cocaine Anonymous, Overeaters Anonymous, and my blog, who is a girl, her name’s Mary [10:45 Mortal], she is constantly writing about the SLAA, which is the Sex Love anonymous group, because she’s part of that as well, and so in my belief, a lot of people don’t have the meetings that we have out here, like where I live, in Los Angeles, and I’ve traveled a lot and been to many meetings, and so being able to see motivation and people that are turning in their recovery and are all about it, and they’re happy and joyful, and they’re not ashamed.
It really helps people to understand that there’s nothing wrong with them, that they’re not bad people. They’re very good people in a very bad time of their life, with in my belief a disease that they have no control over. I grew up in a place with the most loving parents. They did everything for me when I was young, and they could never make me happy. I was a very unhappy little girl, restless, irritable, discontent, nothing was ever good enough for me, at four years old, and I had it all. I had love, I had material items, I had a big family, I traveled the world, you name it, but I was miserable, and so my alcoholism is burrowing inside of me for so long.
Omar: Wow. That is gold. I love it. That is really a great suggestion. I love it. I was going to ask you one more thing. Oh, yes. How can our listeners get in touch with you? Please tell us your website, the books. Tell us how we can get a hold of you, and all your media outlets.
CONTACT Daniella Park:
Thanks again for your SHAIR, Daniella!
See you then!
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 promote or endorse any 12 step anonymous program.