Karolina Rzadkowolska, the author of Euphoric: Ditch Alcohol and Gain a Happier, More Confident You, talks to Veronica about how there is so much more to sobriety than we think.
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I don’t believe we can tell people how lousy drinking alcohol is; I believe we have to show them how great sobriety is.
Every single day, I wake up feeling the love and self-esteem coming back because I’m not breaking any promises to myself. – Karolina Rzadkowolska
Karolina Rzadkowolska, author of Euphoric: Ditch Alcohol and Gain a Happier, More Confident You, believes that we all have an opportunity to become wiser, more conscious people when we’re awake to how we’re living our lives and the social conventions we accept.
Karolina’s story is not about hitting rock bottom. Hers is a journey of self-discovery and finding the courage to come home to yourself.
I really enjoyed this conversation, and I know you’ll get a lot from her beautiful message.
About Karolina Rzadkowolska
Karolina Rzadkowolska is a certified alcohol-free life coach who helps powerful women make alcohol insignificant in their lives. She’s worked with thousands of clients through her online courses and coaching to change their drinking habits and unleash a new level of health, happiness, and potential to go after their biggest dreams. Her book Euphoric: Ditch Alcohol and Gain a Happier, More Confident You will be out on bookshelves on January 4th. She’s the host of Euphoric the Podcast, founder of Euphoric Alcohol-Free, and her work has been featured in the Huffington Post, Popsugar, Authority Magazine, Greatist, and Elite Daily. Karolina’s passionate about helping you discover what really makes you happy outside of a beverage and design a life you love.
The moderation illusion
As long as it’s not a random Tuesday and I’m not at the bar until 2 am, it’s not a problem. – Karolina Rzadkowolska
Drinking is such an ingrained part of our culture that it often doesn’t even occur to us that there’s an alternative. It’s expected that you start drinking when you’re a teenager, and you continue forever, probably only changing the type of drink and where you drink.
After her heavy drinking years in college, when Karolina turned 25, she decided it was time for her to be a “real adult.” She started her career, met her husband, bought a house, and started to settle down.
As part of “adulting,” her drinking was now reserved for the weekend and what she considered only for “normal” occasions.
She was doing what she felt everyone else was doing with alcohol: dinner parties, game nights, weddings, and Friday nights with Netflix.
It all looked normal to her, and she fell into what she describes as a moderation illusion.
Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde
As Karolina got older, she started adopting a much healthier lifestyle. She was all about eating well, working out, doing yoga, and meditating.
At the same time, she kept drinking, knowing the negative effects on her health.
I was living this Jekyll and Hyde lifestyle. Monday through Thursday was like the epitome of health and wellness and taking care of myself. Then every weekend, I would over-drink and wake up on Monday morning feeling mentally and physically horrible. – Karolina Rzadkowolska
The cycle kept repeating itself and her best intentions on Monday morning went totally out the door by Friday.
Wellness and alcohol don’t mix
You can’t be a wellness person and drink alcohol. – Veronica Valli
I firmly believe that wellness and alcohol are polar opposites.
It seems like a massive blindspot where people get incredibly conscious about what they’re eating but don’t even consider the role of alcohol and its negative impact on your health.
All the yoga and green juice in the world will not cancel out the physical and mental cost of your drinking.
The mental load of an unhealthy relationship with alcohol
Although she was actively making an effort to drink less, Karolina was constantly frustrated with herself because she set so many rules and yet kept breaking her intentions.
So much of my mental space was devoted to chatter about drinking and negotiating with herself: “Am I going to drink tonight? Okay, only two drinks; I have to wake up early.” – Karolina Rzadkowolska
She found herself in a relationship with alcohol that she didn’t feel she was allowed to change. She thought that changing things would have people labeling her ad assuming the worst, so she kept herself in the cycle much longer than she had to.
Karolina’s breakthrough was kickstarted thanks to Dry January.
For Karolina, it was the excuse she needed to take a break and get to know what she felt like without alcohol.
Around that time, she also stumbled upon a story of a moderate drinker who took a break from alcohol and fell in love with her life, and decided not to go back.
A light bulb went off for Karolina when she realized she didn’t need to hit rock bottom. All she needed was to come to terms with the fact that she didn’t like how alcohol made her feel.
That changed her world.
After what she felt was a life-changing Dry January, Karolina fell back into her old mindset that to be normal, you must drink. Drinking those few times in February opened her eyes to the start effects of her drinking and led her to take another break. That break turned into four years, and since then, she’s been feeling better and better.
I stopped giving so much power to this drink and started to explore who I was. – Karolina Rzadkowolska
Alcohol is an artificial high. Give yourself a chance to discover what really makes you happy. – Karolina Rzadkowolska
Karolina’s assumptions about what it would look like to be sober kept her from making the change she knew she needed in her heart. It meant doing penance for partying and living the most boring life ever.
In reality, that has been the opposite of her experience.
Her physical health improved dramatically, and her self-esteem started to come back. Feeling better, she started getting out of her comfort zone and exploring what gives her joy and passion in the world.
All the lessons she learned along her sobriety journey have helped her design a life that she loves and become the person she always wanted to be.
That is euphoric.
If you let yourself be open, sobriety transforms you in so many ways and allows you to find more purpose in your life.
Karolina wrote Euphoric to show you can ditch alcohol and come back to yourself and your authentic desires.
If you’re willing to do the emotional work of sobriety, all of the limiting stories and beliefs, and assumptions that you’ve carried for so long will be shattered.
That’s why Karolina and I are so passionate about sharing our messages because it goes so much deeper than people expect.
I highly recommend reading Karolina’s book. It’s a powerful guide to empowering yourself and starting your journey of self-discovery.
- Connect with Karolina Rzadkowolska
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