Is California Sober Right For Me?
Updated: Jan 14
We looked to Cleveland Clinic for the (un)official definition and found this:
“California sober promotes cutting out certain addictive substances and replacing them with alternatives that, in theory, are less harmful. Some people call themselves California sober because they use marijuana in place of alcohol or other addictive substances. Others define it as using alcohol and marijuana in moderation while avoiding other drugs.”
The trend, by no surprise, started in California. It has recently become a top trending search term as generations continue exploring the relationship between alcohol and drugs.
Mike and Glenn explored the fad on a recent sober.coffee episode. You can hear that podcast here.
We will attempt to keep this brief and stay on point. But we recommend our community continue the quest to find true sobriety.
We find it best to analyze this by starting at the end:
Sober is Sober
Sobriety is a way of life. Sober is so much more than just being free, or dry, from chemical dependency. Though total abstinence is the first step, the rest of the journey involves continued core improvement in all aspects of one's life. This does not happen overnight, and there is never a finish line. Those are the stark truths. Sobriety is a plan for living: a lifestyle choice that is dependent on a clear mind.
California sober is an oxymoron, a conflict in terms, as one cannot be sober and using simultaneously. Call it what it is, a program to reduce or moderate the devastating effects of alcohol and drug abuse.
Abstinence – from ALL mind-altering substances – is the cleanest path
We wish there was an easier, softer way to present this but the first step in successful, fulfilling recovery demands total abstinence from all recreational mind-altering substances. There can be little to no deviation from this most important principle.
IMPORTANT NOTE: we are absolutely not doctors of any degree. This topic and our experience with abstinence referred to recreational consumption, NOT medically required and properly prescribed medications. The program we adhere to, Alcoholics Anonymous, has a pamphlet addressing medications and other drugs and can be found here. AS IMPORTANT: the sudden stopping of alcohol or other mind-altering substances without medical supervision can be dangerous or deadly. PLEASE consult, and work in conjunction with, the medical community if you are considering abstinence as a lifestyle choice.
Addressing the real problems
The bottom line is that California sober does not treat the real problem. Feelings, emotions, logic, and reason are positionally altered, masked, and, therefore, never appropriately addressed. For us, we had to realize that it was the things that made us tick that made us tick poorly. Self-assessment and analysis are critical components of our stories of success in sobriety.
This is also an excellent place to insert the fact that professional counseling is a highly recommended augmentation to a healthy recovery, as substances generally are not the issue: they are the coping mechanism used to deal with deeper issues that are not appropriately addressed. Why not explore the depth of those issues with a professional?
There IS a solution
We beat the drum of 12-step recovery here at sober.coffee as it has proven to us to deal with issues at our very most interbeing. We have found that continuously WORKING the steps and studying the first 164 pages of the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous IS a solution - if you work THE solution. Why? Because AA is about so much more than abstinence, it's about treating the real problem. It is a design for living that, if fully embraced, improves life exponentially.
For sober-curious people, please consider jumping in the pool with us. For those already in the water, consider going to the deep end - Fully submerge yourself into a lifestyle that promises to enhance your life positively.
We boldly suggest that you follow a proven path and not attempt to create your recovery road map. Mike and Glenn have tried historically to customize a design for better living. Spoiler alert; they failed miserably. We have found that plugging into a community that is abundant in success and following the direction precisely as it is laid out is the way to go.
We have seen many examples of friends and family searching for opinions, trends, or lifestyle choices that fit their desires. They are looking to hear “their answer.” This can be a slippery slope. Mike and Glenn are living, breathing examples that there is a design for living that works. Listen weekly as they share their love for the sober life and the plethora of advantages that come with their newfound lifestyle, which they describe as miraculous. They confess to themselves and others that none of the great things happening in their lives would happen if they were still out there drinking and drugging. Beyond the shadow of a doubt, they find that sober sober was the right choice.
What choice will you make?
#how not to mess up your life
#if you are using, you aren’t sober
#sober is a way of life
#being semi sober is like being semi pregnant. It doesn't work.
Ideas and thoughts for this blog post were taken and built upon from sober.coffee podcast #88 Titled: “#Trending Series: Pt 3: California Sober” The podcast dropped on 11/30/2022 click here to hear the podcast
Alcoholics Anonymous and AA are registered trademarks of Alcoholics World Service. Inc. References to AA, the 12 steps, and 12 traditions does not mean that AA has reviewed or approved the contents of this publication, nor that AA agrees with the views expressed herein. This publication is intended to support personal growth and should not be thought of as a substitute for advice of healthcare professionals. The authors advice and viewpoints are their own.