Breaking the Groundhog Day Cycle of Shame with Carolyn Robitstow


January 23, 2023

Today I’m joined by clinical coach Carolyn Robitstow! Carolyn helps entrepreneurs break what she calls ‘the Groundhog Day cycle’ of drinking using an incredible brain therapy called Brainspotting. Tune in to learn all about how your brain neurons are involved with drinking patterns, and what you can do to break the cycle. 

If you’re at a point where you need to think outside the box in regards to breaking up with alcohol, brainspotting might be a therapy for you! 

For more about Carolyn and her work, check out her website: 


Listen to Carolyn’s podcast: 


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Speaker 1 (00:04):

Hi, welcome to the Sober Mom Life podcast. I’m your host, Suzanne of my kind of suite and the sober mom life on Instagram. If you are a mama who has questioned your relationship with alcohol at times, if you’re wondering if maybe it’s making motherhood harder, this is for you. I will be having candid, honest, funny conversations with other moms who have also thought, Hmm, maybe motherhood is better without alcohol. Is it possible? We’ll chat and we’ll talk about all things sobriety and how we’ve found freedom in sobriety. I don’t consider myself an alcoholic. You don’t have to either, and maybe life is brighter without alcohol. I hope you will join us on this journey, and I’m so excited to get started.

Hello. Hi guys. Welcome to today’s episode. Happy Monday. Um, I’m really excited about this one. We delve into the science behind our brain and something called brain spotting. I have Carolyn Robo on today. All of her information is@carolynrobo.net. She also has a podcast about this. I’ll link everything in the show notes. And I had never really heard of brain spotting before. I didn’t know what it was. I’ve kind of done a little research since this episode. It’s so interesting. So brain spotting locates points in the visual field that help to access unprocessed trauma in the subcortical brain. Wow, you, it’s a lot of science-y terms, but it, it’s kind of like, and we talk about this in the episode, like E M D R, where you use rapid eye movement to just PR really unlock and process trauma. I am definitely not the expert in this.

Shocking, but Carolyn is, and she’s done a lot of research with it, and she uses it. She helps entrepreneurs specifically with their drinking, and she does this, helped her with her kind of journey to sobriety. She talks about trying a lot of things and just nothing was clicking. And it was like those neurons were firing together and she couldn’t get them. She couldn’t separate those where it’s like, you think alcohol is going to solve your problems or help you relax, or all of the things we’ve been tricked into thinking that it does, and this is what helped her. And so I think this is really interesting. If you’re at a point where you’ve tried everything, you’ve listened to the podcast, you’ve listened to the quit lit, you’ve done therapy, you know all about alcohol and how horrible it is, but you’re still, there’s, you need that extra piece.

I highly recommend looking into this because maybe it is something in your brain that is fusing those neurons together and we need to separate, separate those and work through the trauma and all of that. Carolyn talks way, <laugh> more knowledgeably about it than I do. I really love this episode. I hope that you love it. I hope you get a lot out of it. And then go on your own brain sweating journey and see if it’s for you. First. I want to, before we get into the episode, I wanna thank, so, you know, I launched Patreon maybe a month ago, and I really wanna thank you guys for supporting me over there. That’s how I’m going to be able to continue to get all these episodes out and really do what I love to do and to connect and do this podcast. I’m keeping the podcast ad free, but Patreon is the way that you can support it.

And so I want to do Patreon shoutouts. I’ll do these every week. This is for the top tier patrons, and is that what they’re called? Patrons? I don’t know. That sounds weird. Top tier members. How about, let’s call ’em that. I’m not gonna do last names because I know that sometimes I don’t wanna call anybody out, and I don’t wanna embarrass anybody if this is still a private journey for you. Okay, so let’s do these Patreon, top tier shoutouts. Thank you to Wendy, Joelle, Stacy, Amanda, Jennifer, Jen with two ends. Paige, Julia, Heather, Jamie, Stacy, Megan, Erin, Elena, and Dana. Thank you so, so much. Thank you to everyone who supports me on Patreon. I will just be shouting out the top tier members. That’s $10 a month. We have a $7 a month tier, and then a $5 a month tier. And you do get access to all of the bonus episodes at $5 a month.

The top tiers are going to get access to more things. The $7 tier gets access to the bonus episodes, but then also the video episodes of each podcast episode. And then the top tier, I believe we’re gonna start this with my mom, where we’re gonna do a live q and a where you get to talk to the therapist, kind of like our Zoom meeting. It’s just going to be an addition to that. We have a free zoom meeting every Tuesday at 11:00 AM central time, and you can have access to that through the Sober Mom Facebook group. So you guys, it’s a lot of stuff. It’s a lot of, a lot of housekeeping today. If you want more sober support, make sure to go follow me on my kind of suite. I am sharing. Just, you know, the sober mom life on Instagram is all about the podcast and really more about sobriety. And then my kind of sweet fills in the gaps of, okay, so what does a sober life really look like? And that’s what I show over there along with some style. And I think that’s it guys. If you’re loving the podcast, please rate and review it. That helps us so much. That helps us get in front of more moms who need to hear this message. Okay, I think that’s it, and I hope you enjoy this episode with Carolyn Robow.

Hi guys. Okay, we’re here with Carolyn Robow. She is, I’m gonna get this right. You are a clinic coach? Yes. That’s a clinical coach. And you specialize helping entrepreneurs break their what? Break their cycle with alcohol or break up with alcohol? You tell me. Yeah.

Speaker 2 (06:14):

Well, I just kind of say it as kind of break the drinking habit, but I call it Groundhog Day drinking, where no matter how oof Yeah. Frequent or infrequent it is, it’s that repetitive waking up feeling of, God, I wish I had just not done that the way I had. Whether it’s only on special occasions or it’s every night after a bottle. Yeah.

Speaker 1 (06:33):

It’s that cycle. Yeah. And I think every mom listening to this knows exactly the cycle that we’re talking about. I know. I was in it. Even if you don’t feel like, you know, you’re, I don’t know, and I don’t use the term alcoholic and I don’t go into all of that, but even if you don’t label yourself, there’s still some sort of cycle that happens with alcohol. Yeah. If you’re going to be drinking it, right?

Speaker 2 (06:54):

Yes. Oh, I have a hole. I call it the Groundhog Day cycle of shame. Like <laugh>, I’ve got, I’ve got a whole thing about it. <laugh>, I’ve got a whole soap

Speaker 1 (07:02):

Box. Wait, I want, okay. I wanna hear the Groundhog Day cycle of shame, because I know what you mean even before hearing you talk about it. But tell me a little bit more about that.

Speaker 2 (07:11):

Yeah, so to me, the Groundhog Day drinking cycle of shame, and actually the cycle of shame, we can apply to pretty much any habit, but we’re, we’ll stick with alcohol. Yeah. Is this lie <laugh> that we were fed or have been fed? And so if you picture it as a circle, well, I kind of explain it this way. Like we’re taught it as a pyramid and it’s like we’re, our job is to work our way to the top. And so the common vernacular, or the common approach that we get is this. So if we think of Groundhog Day drinking at the bottom. Yeah. Where it’s just, I just wake up and it’s Groundhog Day, like the 1993 Bill Murray movie. Right. So good. Where it’s like I’m reliving it. Yeah. And what we get told is, well, you just take a break, like dry January or sober October, whole 30, whatever. And I did all of those. So this is a lot about my own story too. Yeah. So we get told, if you just take a break, then it’ll change and you’ll have these clear mornings and you’re just gonna feel so wonderful and it’ll be so great. It’ll be like you practically never wanna drink again. Right. Which is just a fallacy.

Speaker 1 (08:14):

<laugh>. Totally. But

Speaker 2 (08:15):

It does work for some people. So we get in our heads about it. Right. So what happens is it, we get through this 30, 60, 90 whatever day challenge, kind of white knuckling. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And so I actually call this stage on the cycle of shame, white knuckling, avoider. Like this is where we, we may not be drinking, but it is occupying so much brain space. Oh,

Speaker 1 (08:36):

Totally. That’s what my dream is, because

Speaker 2 (08:38):

We’re thinking about drinking and we’re thinking about not drinking <laugh>, like thinking about how much many marked days till we don’t drink. Even thinking about how good we feel not drinking like, but the idea of drinking or not drinking is just take, you know, 800% of our brain power. Right. And then in this lie, we get told after that that you bump up and you start to add it back in. But now it’s like you magically know how to be this moderate drinker. Oh, and I break moderation into these two phases too, where we’ve got rule creating moderators, which is where, so for me, this looked like, well, I’ll have water in between drinks, or I’ll only drink on weekends, or I’ll only drink at restaurants, or I’ll only drink at home. Like any rule you can come up with

Speaker 1 (09:20):

Like only beer, no hard liquor. Yes. No, only white wine. Cuz red wine is obviously the problem only organic wine. Right?

Speaker 2 (09:27):

Yes, yes, yes. Okay. Those are the rule creating moderators. But it’s because again, we’ve been told you need to be able to add it back in. And my huge soapbox with that is that moderate drinkers don’t actually moderate their drinking <laugh>. Ugh.

Speaker 1 (09:41):


Speaker 2 (09:43):

Drinking a moderate amount, but they’re not u they’re not expending this brain power to moderate the drinking.

Speaker 1 (09:49):

No. And also I, from all of the people that I’ve talked to and from definitely my experience, moderation can only last so long. Yeah. Because it does take control. It does. And it’s really damn hard to control this uncontrollable, addictive substance.

Speaker 2 (10:08):

Yes. I had in just one of my sessions the other day, I was doing one of these really specific brain spotting setups that I know we’ll get into kind of what that means. But yeah, we were talking about how well, yeah, your brain and body are doing exactly what they’re designed to do and alcohol is doing exactly what it’s designed to do. Like we’re just having this unrealistic expectation on two things that are doing exactly what they’re, what they do. Like totally unquestionably. And for some reason we keep thinking, but maybe it won’t do it this time.

Speaker 1 (10:37):

<laugh>. Well, and I think for some reason is because we’ve been taught that we should be able to moderate this. Right. And we’ve also been taught that like, well that, you know, we have some sort of normal drinker in our head that can moderate and in this perfect world of moderation, we have this in our head. First of all, I want you to tell me who that is, because I’ve never met that person.

Speaker 2 (10:57):

I don’t know them

Speaker 1 (10:59):

<laugh>. Right? We don’t know them.

Speaker 2 (11:00):

I do know moderate drinkers, but they are not moderating, they’re drinking <laugh>. Like Right. It’s not this intentional energy suck. Like it’s just this healthy relationship, I guess,

Speaker 1 (11:11):

Is it a take it or leave it relationship? Mm-hmm. <affirmative> with alcohol is what you would, yeah. Yeah. Okay. Well

Speaker 2 (11:16):

And I’ll, so maybe let me, I’ll stop getting off topic because I No, no, no. Again, like I, there’s a decent chance of me doing that all the time cuz this is my favorite topic in the world. <laugh> babe.

Speaker 1 (11:25):


Speaker 2 (11:26):

So yeah. So we get told, then you’re supposed to moderate it. So what happens is we get off of dry January or whatever and we think, okay, now I just only want it every once in a while anyways. And that actually tends to be true for a certain chunk of people. Right. Where it’s like I just mm-hmm. <affirmative> am happier without it because alcohol’s gonna do what alcohol’s gonna do. Right. But so then the next stage on this lie of a pyramid is we become special occasion slippers is what I call us. Mm.

Speaker 1 (11:54):


Speaker 2 (11:54):

Okay, maybe we are really externally looking like moderate drinkers, but then, or maybe you don’t even hardly ever drink at all, but then there’s a wedding or a holiday or a special occasion that’s actually a really unpleasant one. Like a loss or a death or something like that. Or you know, loss of job. Right. A really stressful thing that also counts as a special occasion by way of being a unique mm-hmm. <affirmative> situation. Not a day-to-day thing. And then we drink on those days and still the next day we wake up and think, God, I wish I just hadn’t. Right. And it’s whether I wish I just hadn’t at all or I wish I just hadn’t had as much. Like it’s completely irrelevant. But so we get told that this is this pyramid we’re supposed to climb and then at the top we’ve got this like optimized healthy relationship with alcohol and it’s just Right. Crap.

Speaker 1 (12:40):

Yeah. It’s a trick.

Speaker 2 (12:41):

Like it’s not a pyramid, it’s a circle <laugh>. Yes. And we go from Groundhog Day to white knuckling avoider. We may bounce back to Groundhog Day, or we may move into rule creating moderator and we may bounce back to Groundhog Day or we move into special occasion sliver. But at any point like this top of the pyramid, that’s this optimized healthy relationship with alcohol, it’s like a moon floating out. It’s not even on this cycle. Right. So I think that’s the first thing is for people to kind of unlearn this lie of the 30 day break and then the moderation leading to a healthy relationship with alcohol. It’s not that it doesn’t work for some people, but if it were the answer, it would work for all of us.

Speaker 1 (13:25):

Totally. And if I’m guessing that if it were the answer, you wouldn’t be listening to this podcast. Right? Right. Yes. I mean I, I have to say that if you have decided to question your relationship with alcohol and examine it, first of all, I’m so proud of you for doing that in a culture that teaches us that if we do that we have to declare ourselves powerless to alcohol forevermore even when we don’t drink it.

Speaker 2 (13:51):

I feel so powerful around alcohol. Ugh. Like I just do. And I, it’s not, I’m not having any of it. I just feel powerful.

Speaker 1 (13:58):

We are so damn powerful over alcohol because we have seen it for what it is. Uhhuh. <affirmative>. And we have said, see like it’s so funny when I’m called out as like, wow, you must have a really unhealthy relationship with alcohol. I’m like, that is Huh. Hilarious. I have, I have zero relation. Yes. Which is the healthiest.

Speaker 2 (14:16):

Yes. I that that kind of is my next soapbox. Almost this idea of a healthy relationship with alcohol having anything at all to do with math <laugh>. Like

Speaker 1 (14:30):

Yeah. Like

Speaker 2 (14:30):

It’s just got nothing to do with numbers. It, that’s just a bad way to gauge it. Like you wouldn’t go to your spouse or your best friend and say, listen, a healthy relationship means I’m allowed to spend seven hours with you a week <laugh>. And I know on Saturday we’re gonna be together for four hours. So at least three days this week we can’t spend any time together cause I wanna stay at this seven hour a a week low. Like that’s just, yeah. That’s, we don’t do

Speaker 1 (14:53):

That. God no. It’s

Speaker 2 (14:55):

A relationship. It’s based on how you feel when you’re engaging with, so actively drinking mm-hmm. <affirmative> how you feel when you’re around, but not engaging with so at a party, social event, happy hour, whatever, but not drinking and how you feel when you’re away from it. We apply this to people. Yeah. And you know, so as a clinic coach, it means I have a background also as a licensed therapist. So I’m all about relationships and boundaries and how we connect with people. And when we start to apply that same approach to alcohol, it’s just, it’s a game changer. Like Totally. Yeah. It’s not all about the numbers. The numbers are a distraction and they’re a source of shame. Yes. That just breaks my heart.

Speaker 1 (15:38):

It’s so true. It really is. And the idea that we set these rules and these boundaries and these hard, fast Yeah. The numbers and all of that with a clear mind, right. When we’re either hungover, so maybe our mind isn’t that clear, but we’re not under the influence completely of alcohol and we’ve decided we want to make this choice. And then when we have a drink or two and our mind is no longer clear, of course what we’ve decided with a clear mind goes out the window. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> because the alcohol does its job

Speaker 2 (16:09):

And our brain does.

Speaker 1 (16:10):

And our brain does. Right. I always come back to like, seeing alcohol for what it is is scary. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. But that’s the first step. And realizing that it’s not gonna change.

Speaker 2 (16:23):


Speaker 1 (16:24):

Alcohol will never change. It will never change. Which

Speaker 2 (16:28):

Is from a certain perspective is quite reassuring.

Speaker 1 (16:32):

Yes. It’s freeing. I think

Speaker 2 (16:34):

We don’t have to guess, we don’t have to roll the dice. Like we just know.

Speaker 1 (16:39):

Right. We don’t have to. And we can change, but alcohol will never change. Yeah. And not only will it never change, but the more you drink it, the more you’re going to want to drink it until you need to drink it. And that’s just science. Right?

Speaker 2 (16:54):

It is. And that’s so when I walk my clients through kind of this new relationship with alcohol. Yeah. And I, I was laughing cuz you were talking about when we see it and I thought Yeah. The other day a client also, we had this conversation where it was like, it’s like we’re ruining wine and I just said we’re ruining the illusion of wine. Yeah. Like, we’re not changing wine at all. Wine is doing what it’s always done. Right. But it’s like this, I see it as needing these. So if it’s like, okay, there’s this cycle of shame, how do we step off the cycle? Which that’s the best news in the world. First of all, it’s so easy to step off a cycle instead of trying to follow it and have it work for you. Mm. Like, not that it’s easy, easy, but it’s just, it’s simple. Such a mindset shift. So I base it on these three pillars. I call it the my trifecta of change. Ooh.

Speaker 1 (17:40):

I love it.

Speaker 2 (17:40):

This is partially why even when people say, okay, I see it. I see it for what it is, I don’t wanna engage with it anymore. I feel like this trifecta of change also really helps to explain why it still isn’t changing. <laugh>. Like just wanting it to change is only part of these three pillars. And so the first pillar is this personalized daily support. And this is where so many of us get it, like 99% and then there’s that 1% where we just miss the mark just by a hair. But it makes a world of difference. And it’s that personalization part. Right. And this is this idea of, well yeah. Like I can get on my podcast and say, you know, and when I really wanted to drink, I went for a walk. And so if you really wanted a drink, just go outside and go for a walk. Or when I really wanted a drink I made a mocktail. So if you wanna drink, make a mocktail. And the thing is, there are so many things that do and don’t work for different people. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> that it’s really hard to see what worked for someone. And then when it doesn’t work for us, we’re just like, I am the worst. Like, this is clearly a me problem. Right.

Speaker 1 (18:47):

This is obviously not for me. Right. Like, this is not gonna work.

Speaker 2 (18:50):


Speaker 1 (18:52):

I think that that’s probably the hardest part of that early first year, maybe even second year as you’re starting in sobriety, is figuring out what you need. Yeah. Like we don’t even know.

Speaker 2 (19:05):

Well, and that’s what I love about, again, coming at it from this, having had a private therapy practice and using this two relationships, how Yeah. There are ways to actually dial in and figure out what you need without this like trial and error, like common core math approach where it’s like, let’s do it 8,000 different ways. I

Speaker 1 (19:25):

Yeah. You don’t need a spreadsheet. Right.

Speaker 2 (19:27):


Speaker 1 (19:28):

It. Thank God if you did, I would not be in this <laugh>. I

Speaker 2 (19:32):

Hate math. No, no. I hate, I hate math and Excel. I was an English teacher before I was a therapist,

Speaker 1 (19:37):

So Oh, okay. Yes. We have the same brain. Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Speaker 2 (19:39):

Yes. But so it’s like how do we get your values, align these strategies with your values and then you come up. So I, I help my clients do that. It’s like we create what I call a value-based nurture plan. And you get this value lighthouse where we like, these are your top 10 values. These are the way to nurture those values. Mm. Those are the things to do when you feel like you wanna drink. And I’ve never seen a list that looks identical and I have done this with countless people. Yeah.

Speaker 1 (20:07):

And so if someone’s listening to this, I like that idea. Like write down what are your top 10 values? <laugh>. I think that that’s a great exercise because you would think, oh, I could, you know, that’s easy. Yeah. And then it’s like, no, wait,

Speaker 2 (20:19):

What are my values?

Speaker 1 (20:19):

Yeah, yeah. I know. Maybe three. Do I have more than three values? I have to, right. Yeah. Okay. So then it’s a digging deeper, it’s like, wait, what is important to me? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>

Speaker 2 (20:29):

And what does it look like to make those concrete, intangible and notable? Like if my value is, you know, now I’m trying to think of a really ethereal one.

Speaker 1 (20:39):

<laugh>. Yeah.

Speaker 2 (20:41):

Like if my value is love, well how do I make actions in my life Yeah. Akin to go for a walk. Like what is something physically I can do instead of reaching for a drink that would nurture that value of love.

Speaker 1 (20:55):

Yeah. So what does it look like to love myself in this moment when I’m wanting a

Speaker 2 (21:00):

Drink? Yeah. And it’s very different for everybody, but I love taking these really intangible things in saying no, there is 100% a way to make that tangible so that you have this go-to list of things you can do. And that’s why the personalization part is that 1% where some of the time, half the time I’m like 1%, half of the time <laugh>, <laugh>, it’s

Speaker 1 (21:22):

Like, it’s like anchorman. Yeah,

Speaker 2 (21:23):

It is. I’m just making up figures. <laugh>.

Speaker 1 (21:25):

Like it’s 60% of the time it works. Yeah. <laugh>. Yes, yes. Hey, that’s okay. That’s what we do here. We don’t have facts, we’re not scientists.

Speaker 2 (21:33):

When we personalize it, it makes that one pillar a game changer. But then still that’s just the one pillar. Right. And I think that’s where this cyclist shame still plays into it is that, yeah, we’ve been fed this idea too that, well that should be enough and it’s not enough. And I, I really strongly feel like for the people who it is enough for, they’re doing all these other things organically and naturally not realizing it. That’s kind of my theory on it. Yes.

Speaker 1 (22:00):

And they just don’t know it. Yeah. That makes sense. So

Speaker 2 (22:02):

Then the second pillar is this informed decision making, which, you know, you kind of talk about where we like get our eyes open. Like this is what alcohol does. <laugh>. Like, let’s just

Speaker 1 (22:11):


Speaker 2 (22:12):

Clear the air of bad data, outdated science. Right. You know?

Speaker 1 (22:16):

Yes. I think a lot of people start there. I think a lot of people start with thinking, this must be a knowledge problem and let me find out what alcohol is, what it really is. Let’s take the wool off our eyes. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, for some people that might be enough. Like for my mom who is also a therapist, she’s 69, she wants to live forever. And so finding out she wants her brain to be, you know, in the best health ever. And so finding out what alcohol is Yeah. Was enough. Like she was like, oh, okay. Same reason she quit eating meat. Like it was a knowledge problem. And now she changed and she’s, she decided, which I think is a huge, the first step is to decide and then that mental chatter goes away and then she went forward. But a lot of, for a lot of people that isn’t enough. Well,

Speaker 2 (23:04):

Because, and this is where that third pillar, and this is the pillar that is the brain spotting one that’s like my, you know, like I legit eat, sleep and breathe this. Oh,

Speaker 1 (23:12):

Okay, I wanna get into this because Yes. And your profile’s all about brain spotting. And I’m like, okay, tell me what this is because Yeah, I, I don’t

Speaker 2 (23:20):

Know. Yeah. So we’ve got this informed decision making pillar. Right. And what happens for those of us who, again, we’re not organically automatically having all these three pillars unknowingly, it’s like, and this was my experience too, like I read it, I understood it, I am a very smart person. Right. Like I’ve got advanced degree like

Speaker 1 (23:37):

<laugh>. Yeah. Like you read this naked mind, right? And you’re like, Uhhuh, okay, Uhhuh <affirmative>, okay. Alcohol is poison. Got

Speaker 2 (23:43):

It. And what happens is we can know a thing in our top neocortical prefrontal cortex knowledge gathering brain and still our mid-brain mm-hmm. <affirmative> and the rest of our central nervous system does not know it. Hmm. And that is that feeling that is the epitome of that cycle of shame, which is I know better. Yes. Why can’t I do better?

Speaker 1 (24:07):

What’s wrong with me?

Speaker 2 (24:09):

Exactly. And that’s where this third pillar comes in, which is subcortical change. And I have play, I know, and I play around with like, do I need to give it a more like warm, fuzzy, relatable name? But I just can’t call it a, I don’t

Speaker 1 (24:23):

Think so because this is like, oh, like what is, I wanna get into subcortical change. Yeah. Okay. What

Speaker 2 (24:30):

Is that? Well, if we think of our brain as having two parts, which this is a gross oversimplification, because even then most of us are used to hearing about this like three part brain, right? Like we’ve got like the, I’m not even gonna get into that. Right. If we think of it as kind of divided between two parts, we’ve got the top part and the bottom part <laugh>. So the top part is the neocortex. It’s like the outside hat, prefrontal cortex. If you have a hand on your forehead, like a fever, it’s kind of that top part. And okay, it is the part in charge of executive functioning organization making rules. It loves calendars and planning. And so

Speaker 1 (25:04):

Like the logical, all the logistics

Speaker 2 (25:06):

And the language, which is important here.

Speaker 1 (25:09):

Okay. I like this part of my brain. Okay.

Speaker 2 (25:11):

And it’s the last part of our brain to quote unquote develop. Which we know now with neuroplasticity, our brain can be changed at all ages. Anytime. So it used to be the science was that like, and then at like 27 to 25, that part also solidifies. And you’re done. The brain you’ve got is the brain you’ve got. Yeah. Which also would make sense with this idea of, so at that point alcohol can’t like penetrate it. You either get drunk or you don’t, but it, your neural pathways are laid. But we know that’s not true. Now we know that we’re constantly changing our neural pathways. Okay. But so that’s that top part, neocortical part. This is also the part that executes on behavior. So if I’m going to have a drink, it’s the part that says, okay, hand move to the drink, pour the drink, like drink the drink. Right.

Speaker 1 (25:56):


Speaker 2 (25:58):

The other part of the brain is the sub cortex. So basically below the cortex, the neocortex we were just talking about, it is the part that house, it’s your mid-brain. So it houses your amygdala, your whole limbic system, fight, flight, freeze, automatic responses. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, you know, like nervous, central nervous system. Anything that we are not consciously taking care of, it’s in there. And so this part I think of is like kind of the base of your skull. Like if you could just point between your ears, it’s like that whole part in there. So it’s really the meat of potatoes of the brain. Right. Like it’s more powerful. It’s, I think our prefrontal cortex, I think I read somewhere does like 10% of the work. But with this cycle of shame, we’re giving it a hundred percent of the the workload and we’re asking it to take care of that.

Speaker 1 (26:45):

Right. And so without addressing the part of our brain that really does control us.

Speaker 2 (26:50):

Right. Exactly. And going back to that informed decision making part, like that very first sip, the very first process that is initiated is it starts to take your prefrontal cortex offline anyways. Like yes. It’s the least helpful part. It’s the first part to go. And it’s the part we’re asking to help us not drink. Oh. Like we are literally saying, I’m gonna go to the movie theater and I’m gonna put eye patches on both eyes and earplugs in my ears, and I’m gonna watch this movie and I’m gonna leave knowing exactly what happened in the movie. Like, why would you do that? That

Speaker 1 (27:21):

Doesn’t work. Right. And then when you can’t, you’re gonna beat yourself up. Like, why couldn’t I do that? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, which is that cycle of shame.

Speaker 2 (27:29):

Yep. So this subcortical piece. And so I feel very firmly, and this is just kind of take it or leave

Speaker 1 (27:34):

It, I’m gonna take it.

Speaker 2 (27:35):

I feel very firmly that the people who are doing these breaks and it’s working for them and the people who are deciding and that works for them, it’s because somewhere in their subcortical brain that change is also happening.

Speaker 1 (27:47):

Yes. That makes sense. I mean,

Speaker 2 (27:49):

Yeah, our subcortical brain does this, like it does this on its own.

Speaker 1 (27:52):

Right. That sounds like a fact to me. If I’ve ever heard a fact that sounds like one

Speaker 2 (27:58):

<laugh>, thanks, I’ll, I’ll take it. Do it <laugh>. But yeah. And so I started to see it this way for my own self. Yeah. Because I spent two years on the cycle of shame, not two years drinking

Speaker 1 (28:11):

<laugh>. Okay.

Speaker 2 (28:12):

Two years of I don’t wanna do this this way anymore. Yes. And so the first year was kind of that white knuckling avoider. I was just legit on the cycle, like, I’m gonna take a break. The breaks were really hard. I was not even making it through my breaks. Like 30 days was not even an option because at some point there would be a special occasion in one of those 30 days. Like <laugh>.

Speaker 1 (28:33):

Totally. There’s always something, right? Like I, yes, I get Instagram messages all the time. It’s like, oh, I’m doing dry January, but then there’s this, I’m like, okay, well yeah, there, there will always be that.

Speaker 2 (28:42):

Yes. And then year two for me was, I’m gonna start getting coached on this and I’m gonna figure out what’s missing here. Hmm. And so that’s when I did, and I started investing in these programs, and I’m not knocking any of these programs because I did get things from each of them. So

Speaker 1 (28:59):

Like online coaching programs, sobriety. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Okay.

Speaker 2 (29:01):

Yeah. And they each had their kind of like little niche that they said, this is the thing that will work. Right. So with the first one, it was like, you need to have like something indulgent learn to what desserts do you like? Like what is gonna feel good for you? What are you journaling on? Like what is the emotion behind this? All of these things that are really good and powerful. Right. And so I would make it through, but, and this is where I give the analogy, well I don’t wanna get too much into all my analogies.

Speaker 1 (29:26):

<laugh>. No, that’s a, we love an analogy.

Speaker 2 (29:28):

Like this is where then I would finish it and then it would last a little while and then I would go right back to it. So it was like I was seeing more success than when I just like white knuckled my way through it. But it wasn’t actually changing these subcortical issues. Like it was

Speaker 1 (29:45):

So it wasn’t like the behavior change you were still kind of in Yes. You were still in it.

Speaker 2 (29:49):

Well, it was like the way that habit change works from a brain perspective is that neurons that fire together wire together.

Speaker 1 (29:57):


Speaker 2 (29:58):

And that is somewhat common. I feel like it’s not so unheard of that most people are like, that doesn’t make any sense to me. But it’s the idea, if you think all the way back to like Pavlov’s dog, right? Like ring a bell. Yes. Give the dog a treat, ring a bell, give the dog a treat. Eventually you ring the bell, the dog just salivates. Yeah. It’s classical conditioning. And so it’s this idea that if two things happen simultaneously, they grow together on a road in our brain. And our brain associates the two

Speaker 1 (30:23):

I always say like moving a popcorn. Yes.

Speaker 2 (30:26):


Speaker 1 (30:26):

Anytime I go, even if I don’t want it, I’m getting a popcorn.

Speaker 2 (30:29):

Exactly. Oh. And see that’s it. That even if I don’t want

Speaker 1 (30:32):

That piece. Right. Even if I don’t want it,

Speaker 2 (30:33):

Because Yeah. At what point in the history of anyone’s drinking life have they had their first sip of alcohol and a hangover at the same time? Right. They don’t. You

Speaker 1 (30:46):


Speaker 2 (30:46):

These delayed consequences,

Speaker 1 (30:48):

It’s actually the opposite.

Speaker 2 (30:50):

Yes. So what neuron is firing with a drink? This is great. I’m relaxing, work is over, I’m gonna de-stress, I’m escaping. This is a fun party. I’m with my friends, I’m

Speaker 1 (31:00):

Being more myself. I’m finally, I don’t care as much. All of those things.

Speaker 2 (31:05):

Yes. And so over and over and over, those two neurons, which again, gross over simplification, but those two neurons fire together. We’ve got over here. Like I have low energy at work, I don’t wanna get out of bed. I’m slogging through a workout because, and I’ll share

Speaker 1 (31:22):

That. Like my anxiety’s horrible. Yeah.

Speaker 2 (31:25):

My story, like I was working out most days I was running a business <laugh>. Yeah.

Speaker 1 (31:31):


Speaker 2 (31:31):

Yeah, I was looking great. Not physically, but like on paper I looked fantastic. Yeah. Like go work out more. And then so that maybe then the second paid for challenge I did was like more geared towards athletic people and it was like, okay, let’s get you in an event that you’re so desire to do well in this event that you’re gonna train for, and it will be this great trade off. Alcohol won’t even be worth it. Yeah.

Speaker 1 (31:54):

So it’s like a goal.

Speaker 2 (31:55):

And it was like, okay, but like I can already, like, I’ve done triathlons. Like what? This is not <laugh>, it’s not doing it for

Speaker 1 (32:04):

Me. Like I’ve done triathlons and celebrated with a beer. So what?

Speaker 2 (32:08):

Yeah. And I’ve done triathlons and been drinking regularly. Not like, I mean, and I, I remember one time I was doing a triathlon and this was back in my twenties and so this is a long time ago. But yeah, I had been training with a group for triathlons where I lived and then I moved. And when I went to do this one triathlon, that whole group was there. And this was the night before the triathlon. And they were all like, yeah, hey, good to see you we’re gathering in so-and-so’s room. And this was right around the time when Michelob Ultra first came out. Which

Speaker 1 (32:32):

Oh, I remember. Yes.

Speaker 2 (32:33):

Well done Michelob Ultra. Oh my God. On cornering the athlete market. Yeah.

Speaker 1 (32:38):

Rebranded. It’s it’s beer for athletes and for women.

Speaker 2 (32:41):

Yes. Like way to go. So they were in there and I remember it was like, Hey, we’re all in there. We’ve got Milo Ultras. Like come hang out. And I remember thinking, do you guys not know what we’re doing tomorrow? Like

Speaker 1 (32:52):

<laugh>. Right. Like is this crazy to anyone else?

Speaker 2 (32:55):

I know. And so weirdly, I did not go drink with them. Like, I was like, no, no, no, no. I’m gonna do this thing. Yeah. But so fast forward, you know, 20 something years and here I am in this program going, let’s do this athletic thing. And I was like, this also like this doesn’t align with me. Like Right. Alcohol was holding me back from optimization, but it wasn’t holding me back from, you know, performing at a decent ish level. Right? Yes. And that’s where it gets dicey, right? Like there’s no rock bottom. And so we’ve got these neurons for low energy hangover. Wish I hadn’t drank at the drink that much. Or even just like my business is plateaued. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And I don’t feel like working on it or figuring out what it is, or I’m just about to break that six figure a year mark. But like, I mean, just below six figures is not a terrible problem. Like maybe this just is my business. And yeah. Creativity is mushy. All of these neurons, they’re firing hours or days or months later. So our brain, our subcortical brain, the one that is actually making the decisions, remember that top one is just taking action on the decisions. Yes. That’s part of us that’s actually making the decisions. It struggles to the nth degree <laugh> to connect that this is a result of the alcohol, even though our top brain can know it.

Speaker 1 (34:18):

Yeah. It’s not putting it together.

Speaker 2 (34:20):

Mm. Like we know it, but that bottom part’s like not if you ask me, if you ask me, it’s the alarm clock’s fault. Right. <laugh>. Because that’s what’s happening Right. When I feel this way.

Speaker 1 (34:30):

Yeah. Or if you ask me, it’s my fault. Yeah. It’s just because we’re not, we’re not motivated enough. We’re not strong enough. We’re not, yeah. We could be better. We could be like Linda over there or whatever like,

Speaker 2 (34:42):

So Yeah. So because these neurons don’t fire together, we have to create the opportunity for that to happen. And that’s just one of the four brain spotting setups that I use.

Speaker 1 (34:53):

Yeah. How does that change?

Speaker 2 (34:56):

So what brain spotting is, is it was, it’s a therapeutic intervention. And part of why that is true is only because it was like discovered or noticed by a therapist. And so we say in the community, like if a acupuncturist had been the person to solve this, it would be an acupuncture approach. And if a, you know, occupational therapist had been the person to notice this about our brains and bodies, it would be an occupational therapy approach. But it happened to be a psychotherapist who noticed it. So it became a psychotherapy approach. I now am like, okay, but everybody in the world, guess what? You don’t have to need therapy to use this <laugh>.

Speaker 1 (35:31):


Speaker 2 (35:33):

So what it is is based on this idea that where you look affects how, how you feel. And it’s such a weird thing.

Speaker 1 (35:39):

Yes. Okay, hold on. Where you look. Okay, <laugh>, hold on. You’ve already lost me now I’m kidding. Okay. Where you look affects how you feel. Mm-hmm.

Speaker 2 (35:47):

<affirmative>. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And so let me tell you what, this is not okay. This is not like, you know, when someone looks up into the left, they’re lying or whatever that was,

Speaker 1 (35:55):

Okay, so this is not Yeah, this is not a lie detector Tufts.

Speaker 2 (35:58):

Okay, good. This is not that because it’s not very often that it’s always in the same spot. Like, it’s not like, oh yeah. To my right. I always feel warm and fuzzy and to my left I always feel mm-hmm. <affirmative>, you know, anxious or whatever. We have infinite eye positions. Like if you think about it, I could even say like, look behind you right now and you can, without even moving your eyes, there’s this idea of like, oh yeah, I can see what’s behind me. Right. Not that you can literally see it. A

Speaker 1 (36:23):

Picture of Kate Moss and skulls on my wall. Yeah. Okay. Okay.

Speaker 2 (36:26):

<laugh>. But like, we orient ourselves. Right? Right. And orienting ourselves is a very subcortical thing. Can you imagine from a survival standpoint, if the process were, I’m scanning the environment with my eyes, I see a threat coming my way. It goes up into my top brain that thinks, what do I know about threats? What do I know about this particular threat? Let me list out my options. I’m gonna color code them. Yeah. I’m gonna weigh down. Which like at that point we’re done

Speaker 1 (36:58):

<laugh>. Yeah, we’re done. You’re, you’re done.

Speaker 2 (37:00):

So our senses go straight into the mid-brain. They’re like a direct ac. Like we can just bypass this whole top brain for the process. Yes. It’s not that we don’t use the top brain in brain spotting, but it, we use it on the front end, in the back end, the middle. We’re basically like, you can go have coffee Yes. Catch you at after lunch. Like you go do your thing top brain. Okay. So this visual sense goes directly, you know, more or less into the mid-brain and gives us access to that part of the brain. So where you look affects how you feel. What it does mean is that I can bring up anything in the world, quite honestly, <laugh>, but for simplicity’s sake. Like I can bring up this, you know, conversation my husband and I had and it like bugged the crap outta me. Okay. And you can look to the left and see how do you feel about that? And to the middle. And this is a, I’m like super speeding this up. It goes a lot slower. But looking to the middle or Right. Okay.

Speaker 1 (37:55):

And you, and you’re talking about you literally with your eyes, you’re looking to the left.

Speaker 2 (38:00):

Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, I mean I’m happy to walk you through it is like right now and you can see how it feels for you. Yeah. Yeah. It’s just a little bit weird on a podcast. Let people are let’s do it. I don’t see what’s happening.

Speaker 1 (38:08):

Let’s get weird. Okay.

Speaker 2 (38:09):

So, okay. So maybe do just kind of call to mind something that is like on a scale of zero to 10, like a three or four bothersome for you.

Speaker 1 (38:17):

Okay. That was quick. Was that really quick? I was like, got it. It

Speaker 2 (38:21):

It. Yep. Can you feel in your body, like where you feel bothered by it? Like is anything noticeable there?

Speaker 1 (38:28):

Uh, mine is always in the center of my chest. I always feel it. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> right there. Like anytime I am. Yeah.

Speaker 2 (38:35):

Yeah. No, and you’re right. It, it does feel good on our chest. And I’m not trying to rush you. This is also that cough medicine coffee thing. I’m like so excited.

Speaker 1 (38:42):

<laugh>. No. Yeah. No, no, no, no. You’re

Speaker 2 (38:44):

Good. So if you pay attention to that thing that bothered you, that feeling in your chest and just let your eyes go to the left and see what happens with that feeling. Does it get more or less No change. Okay.

Speaker 1 (38:54):

So I’m looking, am I turning my head or just my eyes or it doesn’t matter.

Speaker 2 (38:57):

Whatever feels right to you.

Speaker 1 (38:58):

Okay. Okay. Got a little bit. I felt a little heavier in my chest.

Speaker 2 (39:04):

Okay. What about when you look kind of in the area in front of you?

Speaker 1 (39:08):

It kind of came back.

Speaker 2 (39:10):

Okay. And what about to the right?

Speaker 1 (39:13):

I feel like it became more, my heart started beating a little bit faster. Like I feel more like white.

Speaker 2 (39:18):

Yeah. So just come off of that. We’re gonna get outta that level experiment. Yeah.

Speaker 1 (39:23):

Did you hypnotize

Speaker 2 (39:24):

Me? Maybe if you need to like, and I don’t want, I’m like, don’t get activated. Like maybe fill your butt in, in your chair, kind of reground yourself.

Speaker 1 (39:31):

Okay. Okay. I’m here.

Speaker 2 (39:32):

So what you just experienced is that it is a very real thing that sensation changes. Yeah. Even if it’s only slightly between these three directions. And so what we do then is we really fine tune it down to the exact eye position. The most connected with what we’re trying to get access to.

Speaker 1 (39:52):

Okay. With what we’re trying to get access to. And so in my experience, if it was better when I was looking to the left, then you looked to the left more. Or what does that mean? Like how do you So I will only be looking left from here on out. Yes.

Speaker 2 (40:09):

For all eternity. No <laugh>.

Speaker 1 (40:11):

No. But how does that

Speaker 2 (40:12):

Yeah, it’s a great question. It’s a great question. So what we do is we find the eye position because if we think of these experiences, I call ’em brain blocks <laugh>. That’s why, that’s why the name of my podcast is brain unblocked. Like we just got all these brain blocks. Yes. And if we think of them as like little capsules that are just frozen in time mm-hmm. <affirmative> the eye position that’s, we found the location of that capsule. Okay. And the capsule because our brain and embodies are so cool and powerful. Like when you think of all the things that your brain and body do without you having to engineer it, like breathing uhoh and existing and like fighting off with our immune system and healing paper cuts. Like all of these things that we don’t do a damn thing. Right.

Speaker 1 (40:57):

<laugh>. Yeah. We don’t even know what our brain

Speaker 2 (40:59):

Mind just does it. Yep. So we find the eye position and then that same process takes over. Which is, it’s almost like if your brain was like, damn, I’ve been looking for that. Thank you. Now I will handle it.

Speaker 1 (41:10):

Oh wow.

Speaker 2 (41:12):

Yeah. And it’s just, I mean it’s so powerful. Yeah. It’s really wild to explain and <laugh>, you almost have to try it.

Speaker 1 (41:19):

Totally. And so how can you take this brain spotting approach into our struggles with alcohol?

Speaker 2 (41:26):

Yeah, great question. So with alcohol specifically, or any habit change really, we’ve got the one one setup where we’re doing, where we’re doing the two neurons that fire together and wire together. And so we’ve got the brain spot for the drinking and the brain spot for the long-term consequences. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And so we’re actively engineering an opportunity for both of these things to happen at the same time because they don’t happen at the same time in real life. Yes. So we’re getting it almost like we’re saying these two almost, and this again God so many oversimplifications, but almost if we were saying, I’m gonna ring the bell and give you a treat, I’m gonna ring the bell and give you a treat. Like I’m gonna think about the drinking, I’m gonna think about the consequences, I’m gonna think about the drinking, I’m gonna think about the consequences. Yes. But you’re not just thinking about it. You’re on these specific brain spots with access to that file maybe, or capsule like Right. We open up that capsule and go, oh, here’s the information for both, let’s put it together in a new one so that when my subcortical brain thinks, oh I wanna drink for this, it doesn’t only see that initial consequence, it can see the whole story and then decide as a fully informed decision maker.

Speaker 1 (42:37):

Mm-hmm. <affirmative>

Speaker 2 (42:39):

If it wants that or not.

Speaker 1 (42:40):

That’s so interesting. Yeah. This reminds me of e mdr. Is this a little bit like

Speaker 2 (42:46):

Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, it was discovered during a modified EMDR session.

Speaker 1 (42:51):

Really? Okay. Yes. An EMDR is to work through trauma and that’s all about eye movement. Oh wow.

Speaker 2 (42:58):

Yep. And so brain spotting started out as a, it’s a really effective trauma treatment.

Speaker 1 (43:03):

Wow. Yeah.

Speaker 2 (43:04):

But much like with mdr, we can use it on so many other things. It doesn’t have to be limited to trauma. I actually, I think that’s maybe what I just put out on my Instagram today was this idea of if it can work for trauma, imagine what it can do for habit change.

Speaker 1 (43:18):


Speaker 2 (43:19):

And that’s just one of the four brain spots <laugh> that I, that I even use for alcohol.

Speaker 1 (43:24):

Like really? Yeah. I bet. For so many people our trauma is tied up in alcohol. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, like I know my story. Alcohol was all about trauma for me. Yeah. And so you discovered this? I did not. I don’t mean you discovered, I mean like you learned about brain spotting. Yeah, yeah,

Speaker 2 (43:42):

Yeah. So here’s how it kind of played out. What happened to me was I learned brain spotting in like 2018, 2019. Okay. Which was the same time I was in this two year thing of like yeah. White knuckling, avoider and then paying for these programs and challenges. And I was at the very end of 2019 and I had done two of the paid four challenges. I was actually in the middle of doing this naked mine or the alcohol experiment. Yeah. And so my specialty is a therapist is anxiety and O C D. Oh, okay. And the O C D brain spotting setup has a spot in it where we really dial into this compulsion feels very real, but it’s actually these three parts of your brain and you can literally see them on a scan. Like this is what’s happening, this is why compulsions feel the way they feel.

And I thought, and so we find the brain spot for the truth of that. Like where we really solidify, it’s not about whether or not the door is locked, it’s about the fact that this part of my brain is mistaking this one thing. And I thought, what if I applied that to alcohol? Like I’m learning all this information about alcohol. What if I applied it? Yeah. Would this possibly work? And it was just this like ridiculous. Like I tell this story, I’m like, I don’t even believe it myself. But like I was driving home, I was driving past my like Walgreens, which is where I would stop most nights to get my wine. And I do not ever recommend to anybody brain spotting while they’re driving <laugh>. Yeah. Okay. But I did and I didn’t. I actually didn’t even brain spot it while I was driving cuz that would be really dangerous. I just thought, could I find a spot that would match that the way we find it for O C D? And I found it and I had this like, and I still can feel it now, like this very physical shivering effect. Like I just got a chill through my body and I thought, mm, I don’t ever want alcohol again.

Speaker 1 (45:38):


Speaker 2 (45:39):

And it was so wild and it wasn’t like, and then I wrote off into the sunset. Right. Like I still had

Speaker 1 (45:44):

To, and then that was it.

Speaker 2 (45:45):

Learn all of these new ways of being. And there was a lot of me that was skeptical that was like, right.

Speaker 1 (45:50):


Speaker 2 (45:50):

Like, did that work? Like what do we need to do here? So that’s another one of the spots that I use with my coaching clients who are wanting to drink less is this kind of truth spot. Yeah. So that was how that came about in my life. Cuz then I was like, well shit, this worked for me. Can it work for other people? And it turns out it did. Wow. And then I learned that there was actually a brain spotting set up specific for habit change in alcohol use. And I got trained in that one and that’s the one we were talking about a minute ago.

Speaker 1 (46:17):

Wow. That’s incredible. I mean, I know I love this so much because this is so brand new to me and it’s, I do think probably some people are doing this work, not exactly like the eye movement and the brain spotting, but like you said, like the pillars and like the Yes. Trifecta of change and all of that. Like I think that they probably are doing that unknowingly. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. But yeah. For people who just that they know it’s bad, they want to stop, but somehow it’s like they need more, this sounds like that’s, this is what it is. This is what they need.

Speaker 2 (46:51):

Yeah. And you know, working primarily with business owners, entrepreneurs, it’s like we gotta cut the crap like we don’t have time. Yeah. To try ways that work for most people. Right. You know, <laugh>. Yeah. Like we just need to get this dealt with and move on. And I, I always joke, you know, I have my own obviously my own value lighthouse with my top 10 values and efficiency is like, oh reigning queen on. Yes. Most of these values, to me efficiency is like a domino value. If I can be efficient, so many other things fall into place really well. Mm. And the efficiency of brain spotting to me is the, the transformational piece. Right? Like there are so many ways to make this happen. If brain spotting can take some of the time off of that, if I need to dedicate less time to it and it works a little bit faster, then I don’t even need to wait to see if these other things would work for me. Instead I can jump straight to like, let’s just get this outta the way. You know? Oh,

Speaker 1 (47:52):

Totally. Especially as busy moms. Yes. I mean like we need to be efficient.

Speaker 2 (47:57):

Mm-hmm <affirmative>. And I think, you know, I joke about and not joke, I say too about like business owners, a lot of times I just bring moms in cuz you’re running a business of a household.

Speaker 1 (48:06):


Speaker 2 (48:07):

Like it doesn’t need to be an out of the home business to be in that business mindset, which is I need to be solving problems creatively. I need to be innovating, I need to be able to connect with people. I need to have my hands in 8,000 different little Yes. You know, sorry, hit my mic. There’re 8,000 different little areas and still have a regulated nervous system. Totally. That’s a business if I’ve ever heard one. Yep. Right.

Speaker 1 (48:31):

Like managing people and needs and emotions and like all of this. Yes. Yeah. I mean moms are superheroes,

Speaker 2 (48:39):

Moms are business owners.

Speaker 1 (48:40):

<laugh>. That’s right. We are you guys. We own those little people. Oh, <laugh>. Yeah.

Speaker 2 (48:45):

Yep. <laugh>. C e o. Yeah.

Speaker 1 (48:48):

C o. So how is your sobriety, like as you sit today, like how we’ve heard about like what you tried and, and that you were kind of stuck in that cycle of shame and then you found this brain spotting and it worked. So how is it today for you?

Speaker 2 (49:04):

Yeah, so that’s a great question. I say that I am an optimized aer, which I know we talked about a little bit before, like when I was trying to think like, what is the word for this? And there are words like sober, dry, yeah. Recovery, things like that. And none of those really landed for me because I felt like they all had just this like downer vibe to them. Yeah. And the only people who think that sober is a downer. Viber the people who aren’t sober. So I will throw that out there. Like everyone who’s sober is like, this is the best

Speaker 1 (49:31):

<laugh>. Totally. It, it has been branded as Yes. Stone cold sober. Like sober means like serious and like Yes.

Speaker 2 (49:39):


Speaker 1 (49:40):


Speaker 2 (49:42):

Aer, which I like that AF has this like dual meaning behind

Speaker 1 (49:46):

It. Yes. Same. I’ve designed so many like sober af, happy af, grateful af. And my husband’s like, doesn’t that mean as fuck? And I’m like, yes, yes. And alcohol free. That’s it. Yeah. It’s a play on words.

Speaker 2 (50:01):

I am optimized af because I’m alcohol free. Yes. Like that’s my, so I call us AF ERs. I also like, and I always think of like the little like arm flex emoji when I say it. Like it just feels bad. Like if you can be a badass MFer, you can be a badass <laugh>. Like it just feels empowering to me. Yeah.

Speaker 1 (50:19):

I love that.

Speaker 2 (50:20):

So that is kind of the word I use to describe this state. But I, going back to kind of full circle here, I, to me it is about the relationship. Yeah. I can be around alcohol and feel empowered and I know that if I wanted one I could have one and I don’t. Yeah. And like from time to time people are like, so you don’t ever want one. I’m like, no. From time to time, I think, do I want one <laugh>? Right. But I’ve never landed on Yes.

Speaker 1 (50:47):

<laugh>. Right. Like you’re open to questioning it. And I think that that’s like, you can look behind that door. It’s not a scary door. Yes. Because you, you feel powerful.

Speaker 2 (50:57):

Yes. And I think that’s it. Right? Like, I’m not afraid of it. Right. I’m not afraid of it. I’m not afraid of people drinking around me. I’m not afraid of people offering me drinks. Like I have what I consider a healthy relationship with it. Yes. I think it, I don’t have to avoid it. I don’t have to engage with it. I have healthy boundaries around it. Yeah. And I go back to that idea of if this were a person, I know how to say I’m not down for this right now. Or you know what? That you’re just feeling a little bit aggressive to me. This is not cool. Right. Or like, you know what? Yeah. Like, come on, sit right next to me. Let’s, you know, be in this space together. A friend who wants to have a drink and Yeah. Your, your drink can be on the, like, I share even examples of, you know, I’ll be sitting at a table next to someone, the waiter comes and like, I’ve ordered a club soda with lime and they’ve ordered like a vodka conic with lime. Yeah. You know, they set these two glasses down and they look identical. And we get in this like, which one is yours? <laugh>. Right. And I don’t have a problem because even thinking the last time this played out, that person tasted and they were like, I’m not sure I taste a difference. And I was like, I will be able to taste a difference. Yeah.

Speaker 1 (52:03):

I will be able to Let me

Speaker 2 (52:04):

Try. Yeah. <laugh>. And so it’s not like, oh my God, if I have a sip of it, am I, you know, now I have to start my day count over. Like, I don’t even know how many days it’s been. I know in my mind when I had my last drink so I could get on a calendar and figure it out. Yeah. But this idea of day counts, that’s old math. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> in my book, like that goes back to that idea, that sobriety or being an AF or has anything at all to do with numbers. And it just doesn’t, to me.

Speaker 1 (52:33):

So true.

Speaker 2 (52:33):

The numbers are irrelevant. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, if you wanna count your days and that feels empowering, please do. But that’s when we do get into our head about, well I, I tried my friend’s drink to see if it was my drink or not. So technically I’ve ingested alcohol. Does that count?

Speaker 1 (52:48):

That’s right. It’s like a punishment.

Speaker 2 (52:50):

How do I feel about it? Counting, you know? And so I just don’t like, alcohol has zero brain space, other than the fact that I now have built a career out of talking about it. <laugh>.

Speaker 1 (53:03):

Same. Oh my God, you and I are so similar because it’s exactly my approach and how I feel. Yeah. Like hell on earth is like someone telling me I have to drink. You know? Like I, that would be, that is what scares me. Like I don’t mm-hmm. <affirmative> want to, I I love it so much without drinking. Like I, that’s

Speaker 2 (53:23):

So great. So

Speaker 1 (53:24):

It’s the best. Don’t, don’t miss it. I don’t think about it. Oh, it’s freedom. Everybody

Speaker 2 (53:28):

Come in. The water is so good.

Speaker 1 (53:30):

It really is. It’s just so much freedom. And then, yes. Okay, well I do think about alcohol and sobriety every day because I’ve made it my job. But yes. Without that, and I like this idea of optimizing AF or I deliberately chose sober. I don’t think uhhuh <affirmative>, if it wasn’t as far as like influencing in the podcast, I don’t think I would find myself in the word sober. Because like you like that feels a little punitive. Yeah. Because of what it’s been. But I chose it cuz I want, I want to rebrand it. I want to say no. Well let’s use this word, but let’s use it for what it really is.

Speaker 2 (54:09):

Yeah, exactly. I think there’s so much room now for that. Like Yeah. And that may just be a byproduct of algorithms in the accounts that I have. Like obviously I follow your account, it’s, yeah. Instagram is like, oh, you want more sober stuff. Right, right. But so just seeing so much of a positive movement towards this idea of not drinking is what’s cool. And sobriety is cool and sexy and Yes. Healthy and great. And alcohol does you zero favors. Like I think you and anyone else who’s having this conversation, right? Like there is this movement and people are starting to get it. Yes. This sobriety is this amazing, powerful thing. You know? Yes. I think that goes back to being an English teacher. Like I wish they’d chosen a different word initially. <laugh>.

Speaker 1 (54:49):


Speaker 2 (54:50):

Because we could all still use it. Like, yeah,

Speaker 1 (54:53):

It’s so true. And words really do matter. And so like if sobriety doesn’t feel like the word that you wanna use, or if sober doesn’t feel like, make your word up like you did, like optimize, or like whatever feels strong, whatever empowers you in this space. Like Yeah. Make that up. I always tend to like bristle when I hear the word recovery because that feels like mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Yeah. Like it feels very passive to me. Like I was recovering on January 19th, 2020 when I was on my last hangover. Like that to me felt like recovering, but it feels like, well what comes after recovery? You know? Like it’s, yeah. That’s where I feel like I am. I don’t feel like I’m in recovery, but some people really do and that reminds them that, you know what alcohol did to them and so mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Yeah. Just make up your own stuff. Whatever feels good for you.

Speaker 2 (55:42):

Absolutely. That’s that personalized piece, right?

Speaker 1 (55:46):

Yes, exactly. Okay, so tell everybody, so you have a podcast.

Speaker 2 (55:51):

I do. It’s called Brain Unblocked.

Speaker 1 (55:53):

Ah. And it’s all about this.

Speaker 2 (55:55):

It is all about this mostly centered around, well it’s all, I call it, it’s brain unblocked. It’s the brain spotting podcast. But I center it mostly on this idea that for step one, let’s get healthy with alcohol. Step two, let’s get in our kind of good business optimized minds. Yeah. And even just that too is because optimizing in terms of how do we place a value on sobriety, right. And what it’s worth. And when you think about from an income standpoint, like I, that first year that I was sober and not drinking that I was an aer my business did cross six figures. Yes. The second year I opened a second business. Like yeah, this is a positive impact on my income that I know would not have happened if I were still on that cycle. So

Speaker 1 (56:41):


Speaker 2 (56:41):

I would’ve stayed plateaued where I was. Not that it was a bad space. Right. But I wouldn’t have been able to up level, you know, like it’s just this first, it’s a ripple effect.

Speaker 1 (56:51):

What you unlock in sobriety, the creativity, the time, the energy, the space, all of it is the mental clarity. Yeah. Like no more chatter thinking about alcohol so big.

Speaker 2 (57:02):

Yeah. But yeah, so that’s, that’s pretty much like the gist of my podcast is number one, brain spotting is amazing. Like, I’m gonna nerd out on it pretty much every episode and explain why it’s so great. Good. And number two is this idea of let’s get rid of the alcohol or at least get a healthy relationship with it. And then let’s up level your business. And that has just this ripple effect throughout the world. I feel like it’s how I’m changing the world <laugh>, like that’s where my ripple starts. Yeah. But the podcast, well my website is carolyn robow.net. Okay. And then if you do slash podcast, it’ll always take you to the most recent episode.

Speaker 1 (57:37):

And we’ll link all of this in the show notes. And

Speaker 2 (57:39):

Then I’m on Instagram just at Carolyn robow

Speaker 1 (57:41):

<laugh>. Okay. I’m pretty

Speaker 2 (57:42):

Easy to

Speaker 1 (57:43):

Find. You

Speaker 2 (57:44):

Are. It’s all by my

Speaker 1 (57:45):

Name. That’s good. Yeah. Oh, well I can’t thank you enough for sharing all of this. I am gonna listen to the podcast because I love, like I say on here, I never have facts. So I will go to the people who have the facts and who know what they’re talking about. Yeah. And I think that this is, if someone is looking for, it’s like you’re almost there, but you’re just still in that cycle and you’re still in that trap. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, try this. This is amazing. This could be the key to the freedom that we’re talking about. Cuz it, it really is sobriety’s freedom guys.

Speaker 2 (58:15):

It is so wonderful. Like, ugh. Just makes everything better. <laugh>.

Speaker 1 (58:19):

Totally. So true. Ugh. Carolyn, thank you so much for being here.

Speaker 2 (58:23):

Absolutely. Thank you so much for having me. I really appreciate

Speaker 1 (58:26):

It. Yeah. Thank you so much for listening to this episode of The Silver Mom Life. If you loved it, please rate and review it wherever you listen. Five stars is amazing. Also, follow me on Instagram at the silver Mom life. Okay. I’ll see you next week. I’m gonna go reheat my coffee. Bye.

Speaker 3 (58:54):

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Speaker 1 (58:56):

So that we can tell people about brand new information, a pop culture and political podcast.

Speaker 3 (59:01):

Say it in a way that doesn’t sound like game show host.

Speaker 1 (59:04):

Okay. Do you wanna be in a room of overeducated, douche bags and feel comfortable? Brand new information is for you.

Speaker 3 (59:11):

What’s it gonna take to put you in this podcast today? We have brand new information on sale for free, free wherever you get your podcast.

Speaker 1 (59:20):

Yeah. We might not break the political and pop culture news of the week,

Speaker 3 (59:23):

But we put it right back together for you.

Speaker 1 (59:25):

That’s right. Listen, wherever you find your favorite podcasts.

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