ICYMI + More #Sobriety

Thanks for all of the personal responses you have sent me over the last 24 hours – I certainly appreciate that a lot! Meanwhile, just to highlight that there are other approaches in addition to AA that work – there’s some information from Jason at the end of this  – thanks Jason!! 

Weird that a once drunken asshole like myself would be banging on about sobriety, but here we are as I approach the two year mark in a couple of weeks. I had 16 years sober, then my dad died. I think I turned what could have been an understandable short run ‘slip’ into a few years vacation back into it – NOT like the old days with a bag of prescription speed in my pocket and a bottle of something always – but enough to eventually feel a need for clarity and a pause. Perhaps it is not an accident that I got sober 9 days before launching the museum – Feb 12th 2021. 

I’m particularly inspired this week to see an article from Kevin Lyman in Billboard – mentioning some research that says 56% of industry professionals cite problematic substance use. Back in the day, that number seems low. How forward thinking to have an AA meeting ON THE WARPED TOUR, modelling behavior, as well as talking about it. Certainly our own relationship with artists on the label and in Pigface onstage or crew and Coldwaves and Darkest Before Dawn makes us aware of the additional dangers to third shift workers. We donated space in the catalog to these causes along with harmreduction.org too.
 I’m aware that me banging on about Brew Dog, PUNK AF, or Guinness 0 might be triggers for people or frowned upon by traditional AA, but it has certainly helped me. Watch out though! When I popped a Guinness 0, the sound and the weight of the widget in the bottom of the can kind of freaked me out a little.
Anyway, I just wanted to mention all of this. If you are struggling, you are not alone. And, although I have some (a bunch) of high-larious stories from my times on the edge, not all of the stories have such a funny ending, nor should they be used as a blue print for anyone moving forward. I’m always going to tell my stories (and ask others to do so too – Steve Silver? Chris Connelly? Michael Alago? Randy Blythe?) but, maybe we should have a monthly meeting at the museum too? Open to Founders by appointment and available to anyone trying to recover? I like that…..want to come see Trent’s passport photographs? Listen to some unreleased music? Sit behind my kit? Smell the Killing Joke piss stained banners? Then, sober up motherfucker!
More approaches and a new Pigface t-shirt tomorrow !

peace love and respect always,
Chicago illannoys

If you or someone you know is struggling with drug or alcohol abuse, the National Drug and Alcohol Treatment Hotline is 1-800-662-HELP(4357)!

From Jason:
There’s a great program for the more secular/atheist and Buddhist minded folks called Recovery Dharma (recoverydharma.org) that many find helpful.
Another mindfulness practice I found by a guy called Hugh Byrne (not connected to Recovery Dharma) teaches the following meditation technique to deal with triggers/cravings:

S.O.B.E.R. is the name of technique so it’s easy to remember, that stands for
Stop (what you’re doing)
Observe (your thoughts and feelings that are triggering you)
Breathe (self explanatory)
Expand (your awareness, noticing your environment, your body, deeper thoughts, feelings assumptions, etc)
Respond (appropriately, rather than “react”, to what’s happening)
Like all meditation it’s just a tool to help you observe yourself and expand the gap between stimulus and response, and switch off the mindless auto-pilot we all struggle with in our minds.
Hugh Byrne can be found on the Insight Timer app (a meditation app found in Android and Apple stores – and instighttimer.com) and his website is hugh-byrne.com/



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