First, I want to be clear — this isn’t about vilifying drugs (recreational) or alcohol.
It’s about having a discussion around why we feel these things are necessary for our life.
The two main reasons we use drugs and alcohol are because 1) we don’t have a dedicated spiritual practice that gives us fulfillment and the tools for daily life, and 2) we haven’t uncovered OR aren’t living our life purpose.
Let me explain.
If you’ve been following my Medium account then you’d know I took a one-year sabbatical from alcohol that changed my life in 2019. Within the first month, I was questioning everything that I’d been told or knew. And by the third month, I was a completely different person.
Between the heartbreak of losing a business that had unearthed pieces of my purpose and the newfound sobriety — my world changed forever.
The intense mix of heartache and sobriety tore the rose-colored glasses off my face and gave me a hard look at what life really is, how it really feels and made me realize how much I had been numbing myself out from it all.
My overall lesson was that I thought alcohol made my life more exciting but I discovered that it actually stole it from me. Not because I made poor decisions while drinking, ruined important relationships, or anything of that nature. But because it had prevented me from connecting to My. Self. — my true self. And therefore, kept me from stepping into the full power of who I truly am.
Fast forward to April 2021 and so much has happened. I credit 2019 with launching me into spiritual awakening, but 2020 knocked it out of the park.
I began reading the Akashic Records, working with angels, crystals, Holy Fire Reiki, and more.
At the beginning of 2020, I started enjoying the occasional glass of wine or whiskey but was mostly uninterested.
Then in the Fall of 2020, my spiritual Guides began nudging me towards a life as a spiritual guide for others. The friends in my circle urged me to step out. The marketing agency I’d owned for the past decade was slowing down. And all signs were pointing to “go for it.”
But I was scared. And instead of leaning in, I threw one helluva tantrum that involved a lot of alcohol, quitting work at 12pm every day, and watching a lot of TV.
ALL things totally out of character for me.
I hadn’t planned on using these modalities to help others. I had learned to help myself and to feed an ever-growing hunger that appeared in 2019. I wasn’t comfortable being the “woo-woo” girl. I wasn’t ready to step out and be seen. Even more, I had no idea how to build THAT type of business, and it didn’t seem like I could make a decent living doing so.
How could I make this work..? I yelled at the Universe as I numbed myself out and tried to run away.
However, fate stepped in when my partner suggested we take a full break from booze and green for 90 days to kick-off 2021. By that time, I was growing weary of all the alcohol and knew it was time to back off.
In addition to that break, I decided to take two months off from social media platforms and my podcast. And I dedicated myself to 45 days of Samarpan meditation — a daily 30-minute crown chakra meditation.
It would be difficult to summarize all that has happened since 2021 started, but suffice it to say, my life leveled up for the better.
By February, my spiritual Guides came back strong as ever and this time there was no ignoring them. My entire/sober self was ready to take the chance that I might be able to create something beautiful, something totally unique — a life that the old me could’ve only dreamed of.
Shortly thereafter, I launched my spiritual guidance practice and the heavens opened. The stars aligned. And I knew that I’d found my true purpose.
Then the 90-day break came to a close and despite the upgrades, I was surprised to find myself in zero need or want of any drug or alcohol. Which is a lifelong first for me.
During my year of sobriety, I had to think ahead for events and plan to have something in my hand to keep me calm. I would feel anxiety if I knew that I was doing something or attending an event where lots of people would be drinking. But not anymore.
The realization of why we reach for drugs or alcohol came to me one day while contemplating my partner who came out of the 90-day break and stepped right back into the habit.
What was different?
Sure, we could blame it on a million things — cultural conditioning, stress, anxiety, whatever. But I wanted to understand the root cause.
The difference was two things.
First, thanks to my daily 30-minute meditation practice and continued healing (psychotherapy, hypnotherapy, Reiki, etc), I had elevated to a whole new level in my spiritual growth. I now felt equipped to deal with hard times, confident in my spiritual team, and trusting in my spiritual capabilities. My relationship with the spiritual world grew immensely and through that, I was able to experience the fullness of myself in a radically new and authentic way. And let me tell you, there’s no high like truly connecting with yourself.
Second, I uncovered my purpose and began living it out everyday.
When we live a life without these two ingredients, we’ll always lean on some form of substance that we believe blocks out the noise of the world and allows us to spiritually connect with ourselves. It’s what our soul craves — to spiritually connect.
And these substances give us a look inside a different world, maybe one where we’re cooler (alcohol) or one where we’re smarter (marijuana).
Again, this isn’t about bashing them. I spent a great deal of my life drinking because it turned the constant stream of noise off in my head and helped me to let loose and have fun. With alcohol, everyoneeee wanted to hang out with Ahna! And honestly, I felt most like myself and spiritually connected within the first glass or two.
But it was all a mirage. What it actually did was distract me from taking the time to get to know myself. From feeling my hard feelings. From putting in the hard work of evaluating who I am, healing myself, and connecting with myself spiritually.
It distracted me from giving myself permission to step into who I truly am. Not what the world wants me to be. Or my family. Or friends. Who I am.
And folks, without purpose — true purpose in life, we are forever searching. We are thirsty for something nothing in the exterior world can satiate. And we do our best to fill that emptiness with sex, drugs, alcohol, shopping, food, work, etc. when all we need to do is get out there, follow our joy, give crazy things a chance, and eventually we’ll stumble across it — sober.
With a grounded spiritual practice and the discovery and daily action of our purpose, there’s no reason to numb out. At least not the way we used to.
If anything, we wish for more time in the day because it finally feels beautiful to be alive.