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  • Teresa Rodden
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    Mindset Chapter 3 – 4 Summary and how and what I apply to the topic of drinking habit.
    What is your mindset around alcohol?
    I chose this book because it’s essential to understand the difference between fixed and growth mindsets. Carol Dweck has done extensive research, and although it’s not specific around alcohol, that’s how I learned my way to sober freedom. I didn’t follow the traditional path. It wasn’t a good fit for me, and I would have ended up drunk. I couldn’t adapt to the belief system that I was told to accept. I felt like I was not in charge of myself.
    How many people do you think delay the process of living in sober freedom, finding a new way of experiencing life without alcohol, or learning to experience alcohol differently because they believe it’s all or nothing?
    How many believe there is only one way to think about alcohol or see themselves with alcohol?

    Do you feel threatened?
    Sounds like a loaded question, right? But it’s a good one.
    When facing hard transitions, things that require imperfect action and attention, can leave someone with a fixed mindset not event want to try. It threatens the appearance they work so hard protecting.
    Could this be why you haven’t really given sobriety a try? Or really (wink,wink) tried?
    Living sober, truly sober, not just abstinent invites your softer side out to shine. This doesn’t mean that you be a crying mess and vomiting your misgivings. This means showing up and holding yourself in a loving space and learning to ask, speak, and do what is true for you. Speaking truths like: I hurt, I am afraid, I am superhuman, I am vulnerable, I’m wrongable.
    Okay the last word I created while in the midst of brilliant minds and I wanted to be part of the conversation. I asked what I thought were dumb questions and gave my ignorant perspectives. I found the courage to do so by creating, wrongable. It was a playful way of saying I may be wrong, but I will get the answers to my questions and learn what I didn’t know before.
    Some common questions I hear and have asked myself:
    What does this mean?
    How will life be?
    Who will I be?
    My short answer is slow down. Be where you are. And ask these more powerful questions instead.
    What do you want it to mean?
    How do you want your life to be?
    Who do you want to be?
    This is your life, my friend. You get to choose who, what, how, why, and when.

    Trusting People’s Opinions
    How much do other people’s opinions influence your thoughts and decisions?
    I found this section fascinating. Probably because I spent many of my adult years “not caring a fck about anybody thought.” Oh, this was such a painful time in my life and contributed a great deal to my drinking habit. Of course, I cared, but the more I drank the less I had to feel about it.
    When I first got sober and was involved in the anonymous environment, I cared a great deal about what everyone thought and felt it. It nearly got me drunk again. This helped me come the conclusion that I preferred autonomous over anonymous.
    People will always have an opinion about your life. Their opinion is from their viewpoint with their biases and life experience.
    The only opinion that matters is yours.
    It’s fine to ask for opinions but it’s better to get to know what matters most to you. Allow yourself to be driven by your ideals, needs, values, dreams, goals, and aspirations. If you’ve been misusing alcohol to not think, feel, or do for awhile it may take a little time to identify these things and get a clear picture.
    Connect to her. Trust her. Enjoy her quirky, delightful, and curious ways. You are like no other.

    When It Really Matters
    One of the questions I ask before entering a coach client relationship is, if your child was sick and needed medical attention, would you need to stop for a bottle on the way to urgent care or bring a drink with you? I’ve yet to have a woman answer yes. Because when it matters most she doesn’t think about drinking.
    Chapter four is full of sport heroes and examples. Not my favorite chapter until we got to character. Many of the athletes she referenced in this section were women. They talked about how they pulled from unknown resources for the win.
    This was my favorite:
    Often called the best woman soccer player in the world, Mia Hamm says she was always asked, “Mia what is the most important thing for a soccer player to have?” With no hesitation, she answered, “Mental toughness.” And she didn’t mean some innate trait. When eleven players want to knock you down, when you’re tired or injured, when the referees are against you, you can’t let any of it affect your focus. How do you do that? You have to learn how. “It is,” said Hamm, “one of the most difficult aspects of soccer and the one I struggle with every game and every practice.” By the way did Hamm think she was the greatest player in the world? No. “And because of that,” she said, “someday I just might be.”
    How can you apply this mindset to your journey to sober freedom?
    What resources can you have on deck to support you when you need to dig deep for peace, calm and sanity?
    Do you think you need to perfect sobriety to experience sober freedom? No. And because of that someday you just might!

    The books that I chose for the final quarter of 2021 were on purpose. They contributed to who I was becoming on my journey to alcohol autonomy. It’s exciting to revisit these books at THIS stage in my life. It’s like, oh yeah, I forgot about that, and I am interpreting the content much deeper and broader than before.
    And taking notes and recording thoughts for your benefit is taking it to the next level. Thank you for being a part of my journey too.

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