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#007 Robbie Shaw & Patrick Balsley

Patrick Balsley: [00:00:00] Addiction is like the biggest public health crisis ever. 

Robbie Shaw: Yeah, right. You know, cause connected to our phone. Yeah. All 

Patrick Balsley: the cardiovascular stuff, all that stuff. It's all addiction. Yeah. All addiction 

Robbie Shaw: related. 

B. Reeves: Do y'all, in your work and through the podcast, maybe tangentially work with people or who have more process addiction, phone shopping, gaming?

Robbie Shaw: I don't think that's as common to admit these days, and I don't think people think of it as, An acute issue. Right. I mean, it's, it's something that we've yet to see what its long-term effects are. You know, I mean, we're starting to see it in kids. Mm-hmm. Uh, anxiety and depression, you know, I mean, so partially, I mean, I think in the work that we do in knowing that, especially, especially cuz we, Patrick and I both work.

Robbie Shaw: More in the holistic space, kind of looking at the entire wellness spectrum and, and screen time is absolutely one of them. Mm-hmm. Yeah. Uh, so we, [00:01:00] you know, we certainly talk about that and nutrition and, you know, exercise and all those things, but especially when you're talking with kids. But, but it's the same, same thing goes with like parenting.

Robbie Shaw: I mean, it's like, You know, I was constantly telling my daughter to get off her phone while I'm on my phone. Mm-hmm. Mm-hmm.

B. Reeves: Welcome to Finding New Watchers. Our goal in creating Finding New Watchers is to provide a resource for families to help navigate the complexities of supporting a loved one struggling with substance use or mental health. When we find ourselves in crisis due to one of these issues, most people have no idea where to turn.

B. Reeves: We hope to shed [00:02:00] some light onto what is often the darkest hour for many families. Well, I am, uh, very honored and privileged to be sitting here today. For this episode of Finding New Waters with Robbie Shaw and Patrick Bosley, they're the hosts of Champagne Problems, the number one rated podcast by Charlotte Magazine.

B. Reeves: Um, I, uh, I've actually known Robbie for, since I was 10 years old, and Patrick, just for the last about three years, um, working in this industry and we're so honored and, and excited to have them here today. And we're not just gonna talk about what they do with their podcast. We do wanna talk about that, but also what they.

B. Reeves: Outside and what they do for you, they're their day-to-day and, um, how they ended up where they are in terms of recovery and all that kind of stuff, so. Mm. Um, got three or four hours. Yeah, we do. You just said you had to be back by dinner, right? 

Robbie Shaw: That's right. 11 o'clock. That's right. All right, well, let's get going.

B. Reeves: Well, um, anyway, thank y'all for being here and, uh, I'll just kind of turn it over to you for first, Ravi, [00:03:00] about what, what do you, what do you do other than, um, host champagne problems? 

Robbie Shaw: Well first, thanks for having me. Uh, we are equally as honored to be here with you B. Um, What do I do outside of champaign problems?

Robbie Shaw: Um, I do quite a few things. Uh, I think as it relates to, you know, this conversation, I do have a private practice called even Tide Recovery, where I work as a recovery, sobriety and wellness coach. Um, That started, you know, years ago with some intervention services and now it's just kind of morphed into just doing coaching for people who are either looking to get sober, toying with it, or are sober and are looking to sustain, uh, as well as work with family members and loved ones of.

Robbie Shaw: People battling, um, any level of dependence or addiction. Um, and then I also have a, a studio, an audio video production studio that we are positioning under the mental health and wellbeing space, as, you know, content creators and, and, uh, any production in that space. [00:04:00] So that is the, the gist of what I do outside of champagne problems.

Robbie Shaw: Awesome. What about you? 

Patrick Balsley: So, um, I also have a private practice in Charlotte. It's called Sauna Counseling, and, uh, it's a group practice. I have a, a couple coaches, uh, an interventionist, um, couple therapists that work alongside me. Um, we do a lot of the same stuff Robbie does. Essentially, we serve the same population.

Patrick Balsley: People that, uh, that are either in recovery or looking to be in recovery. Uh, we do a lot of pre and post what I call pre and post treatment work. Um, a lot of family coaching, a lot of craft style interventions where we kind of move families through the stages of change to get 'em where they need to be.

Patrick Balsley: Um, in terms of engaging with resources, it's a lot of what we do. Um, and then families usually stick with us, so they'll go through treatment and then, you know, when they get. We usually work with the families while they're still in treatment and uh, and then when they get out and they're more [00:05:00] stabilized, uh, we can, you know, move forward from there and, uh, with a more of a long-term engagement strategy, build, build that trusting relationship.

Patrick Balsley: Um, and then, um, I just opened a high-end recovery residence in South Charlotte called Sauna House. Um, it's a really small. Recovery residents, transitional living, um, program for men, uh, in early recovery. And, uh, we only have five beds and, um, it's something I've wanted to do for a really long time, so it's gonna be fun.

Patrick Balsley: And then pretty heavily involved with Emerald School of Excellence, the Recovery High School in Charlotte. Big passion of mine. Um, and, uh, yeah, that's pretty much it. That's 

B. Reeves: awesome. I, um, you said something that I wanted to touch on, which, People who are kind of experimenting with recovery, the sober curious movement, if that's even, uh, you know, can be classified as a movement.

B. Reeves: But it's something I've [00:06:00] noticed. And then when I first heard your podcast, I guess almost three years ago now, or at least two. Two, okay. Two. Yep. Um, that seemed to be kind of a, an ongoing theme, and I know it's evolved and changes and, but I, uh, I see it in my personal life and it sounds like you do too.

B. Reeves: And I, you know, I wanna hear your thoughts on it too. Kind of what, what that really looks like. And, and does that ever, in your experience, turn into permanent sobriety? 

Robbie Shaw: Great question. So the word sober is what throws that off, right? It, it really, it's just people looking to eliminate things that are hurting them.

Robbie Shaw: Right? So it's really falls under the more wellness, wellbeing space. Now, of course there's a wide range of people that might fall into this population that are exploring this stuff. So there could be people that are battling some level of addiction or dependence that sobriety might look more appealing for them.

Robbie Shaw: But then I think the curious movement. You know that as, as it spreads [00:07:00] throughout the, a lot of our younger generations and a lot of our population in general is more around the wellness stuff. Just look the, the science around these substances, specifically alcohol, um, cuz that's the most widely used, you know, people are learning more and more about this stuff and they're starting to recognize that.

Robbie Shaw: Their wellness strategies. Wellness goals are not being met or being altered or being influenced by something that is sold on every corner and in every household or most. And so they're just starting to say, you know, maybe this is something that's not serving me. And, and I think that is new. I think people have done that to a degree, but not in the space of alcohol.

Robbie Shaw: Right. And that's the trend and that is the snowball that's ging out there. Our podcast is super excited about. I mean, we, we position ourself in the wellness space. You know, we're not, it's not about it. Are you an alcoholic? Are you an addict? Are you addicted? It's how is it affecting your sleep? Mm-hmm.

Robbie Shaw: Your work productivity, your relationships, your parenting, you know, whatever else. And that way it opens it up to everybody and not just people that are potentially battling and [00:08:00] addictive behavior. Right. Substance. And I 

B. Reeves: think, I mean that, that news that came out pretty recently. All sorts of reports that moderate drinking is not in fact good for people.

B. Reeves: No. Which have been the, uh, standard for thousands of years, I guess, 

Robbie Shaw: right? No, it's not. It's unfortunately it's not. I mean, you know, neither is, you know, a bag of Doritos four days a week, so, yeah. You know, we, there's relativity associated with this and we understand that we're not prohibitionist, but alcohol is, is bad for you.

Robbie Shaw: No. 

Patrick Balsley: Bottom line. I mean, if we, if it came, if, if alcohol never existed and it came out. It would be a schedule one controlled substance. Oh yeah. It'd be illegal. Be completely illegal. Right. And it does more damage to your, you know, to your body and mind than pretty much any other drug other than probably meth.

Patrick Balsley: Yeah. You know, it's, it's, it's really bad for you. 

Robbie Shaw: That's not good for you. 

B. Reeves: Well, y'all both work with or, or between the [00:09:00] podcast and what you both do. Younger people. Not, not exclusively, but, you know, one of the things that I'm always, you know, I, I, I found recovery and got sober, you know, kind of from that average age I was 41.

B. Reeves: And, um, but a lot of my friends got sober really young. And I, and I, we, I work, I used to work specifically with younger guys and, and, and women, you know, um, young adults. And just keeping them engaged. And my whole thing was always tr you know, let show people how to enjoy life. Mm-hmm. In recovery, not just tell 'em that it's possible.

B. Reeves: And just wondering kind of what your experience has been like and what you would say to try to help keep younger people engaged who are who, who need to be in recovery and who are, or experimenting with it. Because, you know, they see their friends, you know, mostly not, and they, yeah. Have. 

Patrick Balsley: Acceptable. Yeah, I mean, I love the lens that we look at things from, you know, it's less clinical.

Patrick Balsley: It's, it's more, more on the health and wellness side. I think. Um, we've done a really poor job historically of being able to articulate [00:10:00] what we're dealing with, um, and we've kind of pigeonholed into this pathological way of looking at this issue. Or pot or even a potential issue. Um, and it's stigmatizing, you know, so a lot of the young people, especially the ones that you know, may not be, you know, what we would consider.

Patrick Balsley: You know, hit rock bottom or whatever, but have like some, you know, moderate consequences in their life due to their substance use. It's very difficult for them to align themselves with what we would typically call somebody with a severe substance use disorder, um, or like rob, like alcohol or alcoholic or addict.

Patrick Balsley: Um, they just don't identify with that. So I think if we can aim, aim more towards articulating. Kind of dynamic in, in, in a more of a health and wellness way. They, they can roll with that. You know, it's [00:11:00] like, hey, let's, let's just take a look at how this stuff's affecting your life. Um, and not look at it more of like a, you know, from a shame, shame or guilt perspective.

Patrick Balsley: Like, like what's your doing to your family? You know, it. Oh, let's, let's really do like a, like an assessment of how this is impacting you and how does it match up to your values. Like, how does this, How, how is this stopping you from getting where you want to go? And if you don't know where you want to go, let's figure that out first, you know?

Patrick Balsley: Yeah. Um, 

Robbie Shaw: yeah. And then, and then, you know, more externally there's, there's, you know, two really big uphill battles that I think stand out and, and one is the effect of alcohol. It's, it's super effective. And, and people tend to kind of forget that or, or, or don't keep it front of mind where it's like, you know, why this, why that?

Robbie Shaw: It's like, well, have you ever had a sip of alcohol? It, it works, right? It makes you feel pretty damn good. Uh, so there's [00:12:00] that. And we are creatures of, of, you know, living off reward systems and, and we like things that make us feel good and. So there's that. Secondly, it's a, it's a cultural norm. And and how do you fight that?

Robbie Shaw: Yeah. I mean that's, that's the hard part is the normalization. That is like you, like you asked these kids that are just looking around and it's like, well, that's what you do to have fun. You know? That's what you do to be cool. That's what you do to act like you're famous. That's what you do to get girls, you know, that's what you do for all this stuff.

Robbie Shaw: And, uh, how do you change that, you know? And, and we see it because we quit and now we can see. It's not necessary. It's not required to have fun and do all these things, but that's what you grow up seeing and thinking and, and becoming ingrained and unfor. I don't have the answer. I don't have the answer other than to just 

Patrick Balsley: show it.

Patrick Balsley: I mean, one, one of the things that I try to do is, like I was saying, I try to get. Whoever I'm working with, cuz I work with a lot of people that are sober, precarious, that don't meet criteria for substance use disorders. Mm-hmm. But are, you know, having troubles with their relationship or [00:13:00] parenting or their, you know, got a dui and it's like, okay, now I'm starting to see a pattern here, need to get a little bit of help.

Patrick Balsley: But like I, if, if you can paint a really clear picture of what you want your life to look like, like what is the ideal, you know, what do you really want, like, Really optimistically Paint that picture. Yeah. 

Robbie Shaw: Do you wanna get drunk every night 

Patrick Balsley: or, yeah. And, and then, and then, and then you just, probably not you, you, you map the alcohol use on top of that and be like, is this.

Patrick Balsley: Getting in the way of you reaching those goals or being that person that you want to be or being that you know dad that you want to be. And if the answer is, yeah, it is getting in the way, then that's a, it's a, it's a pretty rational way to, to look at it. And if they can see that, and that always usually develop some type of internal motivat.

Patrick Balsley: No. 

Robbie Shaw: Oh, and sorry, but the, but the, the answers are in the results of that too, in the sense of like, when I think back to if someone were to do that kind of work with me when I was [00:14:00] 11th grade, 12th grade, what do you want? I want to be popular. I want to have the hottest girlfriend, and I want to be, you know, members of this group, and I want to go to this bar and I want to do all these things.

Robbie Shaw: Like, that's what I want. What do you say to that? 

Patrick Balsley: I say, alright, well let's look five years further. 

Robbie Shaw: Yeah, yeah. Well, I, I wouldn't have an answer. So the, so then of course the work would be, 

Patrick Balsley: develop the answer. That's what we develop, you know? And then, and then we go even more macro and we say, okay, well this little vision that you have right now of what you want right now, how is it getting, how is that mapping on.

Patrick Balsley: To the five year plan, right? Is you hanging out at bars with a hot girlfriend, you know, drinking every night? Is that gonna be sustainable to get you to what you want five years from now? Yeah. Yep. And 

Robbie Shaw: I love 

B. Reeves: that about just so simply just getting in the way. I mean that, yeah. When I look at my own situation, it was, you know, I, I had what would be called like a.

B. Reeves: You know, a somewhat high, medium bottom, but it was more about just, it was just in the way of everything. Yeah. That was never gonna grow up. I was never gonna be [00:15:00] anything close to being successful on any level. The only way to measure any success in my life was just the number of years I've been alive.

B. Reeves: And that was basically it. You know? It was just in the way. It was just in the way. Um, yeah. But these, the young guys, I, that's great. I mean, that. Love. Yeah. We 

Patrick Balsley: love that we sacrifice our dreams. Yeah. For, yeah. You know, for instant 

B. Reeves: gratification. Yep. Yeah. For sh. Yeah. And I mean, you know, I just think about you like I was had no, when people, I remember people would ask me, what do you wanna do in five years?

B. Reeves: I would just laugh, you know? 

Robbie Shaw: Yeah, 

B. Reeves: this, yeah. I don't want to know. I li I let, 

Robbie Shaw: right. I don't wanna think about that. Yeah. 

Patrick Balsley: Yeah. One of the things too that I always tell people, it's like, stay present, man. Yeah. A lot of people don't know that really one of the main organic. Sources of positive emotion is moving towards something that we value and it's actually the process of moving towards like a target, right.

Patrick Balsley: That is meaningful to [00:16:00] us. And it is like the, the, you know, the joys and the journey. Like that's actually true. Mm-hmm. And that's really the only thing that provides us with real, like healthy, positive emotion. Yeah. Is, is moving towards that. Um, and if we. No. What we're moving towards or we don't even have a target.

Patrick Balsley: You're just like, it's meaningless. Yeah. But not, not only that, like you will end up being a victim of our society and like all the information that we're just getting bombarded with constantly of you, you know, you're not good enough. You know, here's something to make you feel better. Mm-hmm. You know, drink this, wear this, buy this, drive this.

Patrick Balsley: You gotta have this. Yeah. And I mean that, you know, that's how. How everything is is so our economy's driven. Yeah. When I was, go ahead. Yeah, no, I mean, if you don't have that target to, to, to kind of [00:17:00] overcome every, all the pressures around you, your 

B. Reeves: toast. Yeah. Yeah. And I mean the, the trigger part of all this, I remember I, when I was in treatment, we had this lesson on what are, what are triggers?

B. Reeves: And it was like, Hmm. Bars. Okay. Obviously, Parties. Okay. Obviously restaurants. All right, weddings, all right. And then it was like ATMs, exit ramps. I was like, okay. So literally everything, just gas, gas station bathrooms. Yeah. I mean, it kind of helped in a way that I just, on the spot was like, all right, so everything's gonna be a trigger.

B. Reeves: So maybe nothing can be a trigger, but, you know, it's, it's not that simple. But, you know, when I'm spiritually fit, nothing is a trigger. But if, but if I'm not, then it is. But I was thinking about something I noticed when y'all first started. When you first started, uh, champagne problem. A lot of talk about just, you know, being everywhere, coming from all angles like we're talking about now.

B. Reeves: But yesterday I was creating, uh, an, an invite for, um, I won't say the name of the, you know, the, an online, um, invitation generator, [00:18:00] um, for an alumni event we're having in May. And just the options to choose. They have hundreds of 'em. Oh, I'll 

Patrick Balsley: sit on that damn thing for like six, 106 hours. 

B. Reeves: 80 of 200 options have alcohol already.

B. Reeves: Oh. You know, it's a template on the card, you know, bubbles, sip and see and bump and just literally everything. And it really made me think about kind of the, the early days least of champagne problems where just, it's just everywhere and it it, and it is, and I know, you know, just kind of. Learning to navigate that and understanding that.

B. Reeves: And then kind of to your point a second ago, that all these things, whether it's the woman, whether it's beer, whether it's drugs, whether it's um, you know, promotion, just understand that, that this is all an inside job and none and all these external factors are all kind of, they're just external. You know, we're, we gotta learn how to be happy from 

Patrick Balsley: the inside out.

Patrick Balsley: It's a dream killer man. I mean, it really is like, the way that you just described that, it made, it made me think about like how many people, and we don't just, we don't just do it with alcohol, we do it with any, anything. Sure. That's gonna make us feel better and [00:19:00] help us check out. But like we go to work or we have, you know, we have these daily stressors or these things that we think about that we want, or these things that we think about that we're not satisfied with in our life that we want to change.

Patrick Balsley: Yep. And then we go home and we drink a couple glasses of. Or eat a big ass steak and we forget about it for the day. Mm-hmm. And then we wake up the next morning and we do the same damn thing and we do it every single day. And at the end of the day, instead of, you know, kind of letting this build and be like, I need to do something about this.

Patrick Balsley: I need to change this in my life. We just drown it out. We just suppress it day after day after day after day until we, you know, steps. Heart attack or, yeah, it's, we're 75 and we're angry and divorced and 

B. Reeves: Right. It comes up, you know, 

Patrick Balsley: out, boy. 

B. Reeves: Yeah. And I mean, I do a lot of, um, you know, my job here, I do [00:20:00] most of the pre-admissions and you know, one of the questions we ask every single person is, do you drink or, or use to relieve mental health symptoms and whether it's anxiety or depression, or whatever it is.

B. Reeves: And the answer is always yes. And then the answer is almost always, it's always something, um, along these lines to drown out. To not think about my problems, because that's how it is. Relieve stress. Yeah. And just, but like, we're just stuffing it down for the day. Yeah. Good. Every day it just avoiding it.

B. Reeves: Yeah. It's, it's not, it's not going away. No. It's not going. I tried that. You know what? It doesn't work. 

Robbie Shaw: It doesn't, it doesn't work. It's amazing. It comes up and comes out in some way, shape or form. Yeah. And for a long time you can, you know, a lot of us can manage it. Yeah. You know, we can, uh, We can deal or we can set our standards right where they need to be.

Robbie Shaw: Right. And may and, oh, I function, I function perfectly well because I do this, this, and this. 

Patrick Balsley: But I, I think what we're starting to figure out, Like, at least scientifically is that that all, all the, [00:21:00] that emotional discord and disconnect that, that we're drowning out is staying stuck in our body and it's manifesting itself and all kinds of totally physical health problems.

Patrick Balsley: I mean, sure. 

Robbie Shaw: Well then you, I mean, try being a parent, right? Mm-hmm. And a, and a, a loving, supportive, healthy husband. I mean, that, that stuff doesn't come, you can't do all that when you've got turmoil going on inside of you. Yeah. You know, and then your kids all messed up and, oh, I can't figure out why. 

Patrick Balsley: It's tough, man.

Patrick Balsley: And you deal with it for 30 minutes and then, you know, then drown yourself in booze for the rest of the night. You know? Yeah, that's 

B. Reeves: right. So what do you, what do you say, you know, to, especially to parents, you know what I mean? A big thing we talk about here a lot, especially on the podcast, we talk about it all day at work too, is, I mean, what I, you know, the biggest challenge we see with families is creating of and sticking to boundaries.

B. Reeves: Mm-hmm. Which seems, you know, super obvious and I mean, because it's true and it is. But, uh, what else would y'all say, just in terms of, you know, with to [00:22:00] speaking to families, About their loved one and how they can best handle, and I don't just mean getting them into treatment, but just, you know, lovingly working to help them get better, you know?

Robbie Shaw: Yeah. Patrick and I talked a little bit about this on the way up because it's, as you know, there is no simple answer to that. Right. And as much as we would love to just have a, here's what you do, every situation's different. Yep. Every parent is different, every family system is different every. Dependence or addiction to a substance or a behavior is different.

Robbie Shaw: So it's, it's really hard to pinpoint a very, a generalized direction for that. Um, that being said, now what, what can you do, you know, initially, um, and we, we, you know, we had this talk with the, uh, church group recently, and, and a lot of kids were asking this, and a lot of parents were asking that, and it's, you know, the first answer was like, reach out for.

Robbie Shaw: Yeah. Bottom line, like number one. Yeah, that's the most, do not try to [00:23:00] figure it out yourself. Do not just try things and do things based on how you think and feel in a moment. Like, seek out a professional and get some guidance. A good professional, 

Patrick Balsley: a good one. All right, and that, that, that's also. One of the issues too is that people go on Google, oh my God.

Patrick Balsley: And they, you know, or they get caught up with some snake oil salesman, or, or, or even just somebody that doesn't, I mean, that's really trying to be good and has good intentions, but they really don't know what they're talking about and they get bad advice. Yeah. Um, or it's like, You know, oh, well my, my son struggled with this and this is what we did, and this is the treatment that we got him, so it's gotta be the right one for you.

Patrick Balsley: Mm-hmm. You know, and they're, they're not doing it intentionally, but I mean, you really need to have a good, you know, mental health professional that can do a really good assessment, um, and really gather all the information before any recommendations are made. I mean, that's, that is key. Well, 

Robbie Shaw: and. [00:24:00] You know, to get into the kind of details of that answer of the question is really around, like you said, all, all of the details.

Robbie Shaw: And so what they're gonna try to figure out and what the parents need to know is that they need to educate themselves. Yeah. Uh, on the situation, the substance, the behavior, all of that. But also they've gotta do some work. Yeah. Because this is a system and you're the parent. Mm-hmm. And this is, You know, you need to go do this.

Robbie Shaw: You need to go do that because you're doing this and that. It's what, what can I do? Mm-hmm. What am I doing? What's going on with me that's causing potentially some of this stuff? And what, what changes can I make? I mean, I use the example just in the sense of a marriage. Um, you know, how do you make a marriage work?

Robbie Shaw: Well, it's it's not about. Letting the other person, uh, know what they need to do to change. It's doing what you need to do to be good with yourself in order to be there for the other one. And it just, yeah, I mean, it's like, it's 

B. Reeves: the same thing with parents, the [00:25:00] same thing as we're talking about with the external factors.

B. Reeves: Yeah. With the, you know, the drugs and alcohol and food and whatever, and women and whatever it is. You know, even if that person's not the one who needs. Um, recovery or, or treatment. You know, we gotta, everybody's gotta do his or own her own 

Robbie Shaw: work, you know? Right. Yeah. I mean, how can you give, how can your child, um, trust you, believe you, you know, feel the love, feel the support.

Robbie Shaw: Take the advice, take the guidance If you're not coming from an authentic place mm-hmm. Because you're out of touch with your own. Yeah. Right. They, they sense that when it comes 

Patrick Balsley: to boundaries too, I mean, that's really tricky and it's really individualized. So there's not, like, there's a big difference between understanding boundaries and understanding your boundaries.

Patrick Balsley: Mm-hmm. Because if they're not your boundaries, you're not, you're, you're, you're not gonna be able to, they're not gonna be sustainable over time. Mm-hmm. Like I can tell a parent, [00:26:00] Hey, you gotta do this. And they may do it once. But it's like, hold on a second. I'm not ready to do that yet. Mm-hmm. You know, I can't set that boundary every day.

Patrick Balsley: Right. And 

B. Reeves: then if they do it at once and then cave, 

Patrick Balsley: then, then, then, yeah. So I mean, that's why it's real. That's why it's different. It's different for every family. It's different for every parent. It's different for every situation. And I think that's kind of the message that that gets convoluted sometimes in terms of our field.

Patrick Balsley: Um, where we have a very, you know, that idea of codependency and you're an enabler and you know, you just gotta do this and your kid will get better. It's like they can't do that. Mm-hmm. It's the same thing. It's like, it's the same dynamic of like telling a, telling a person that's addicted to drugs, like just to stop using.

Patrick Balsley: It's the same, it's the same thing. Yeah. You know, just kick 'em out of the house. Yeah. Just kick 'em out of the house. Yeah. Yeah. That's easy. Yeah. Okay. The kid. That I love to death, but I, I think we don't talk about that as much as we should. [00:27:00] And, and it's very difficult for family members to figure out their own boundaries without the help of like a really good therapist or really good health professional.

Patrick Balsley: And in order to figure out. Your own boundary. I mean, that takes some time and that's why I tell, I'm like, everybody should go to therapy. Yeah. Every single person in that family system ought to have a therapist that they're seeing and not to get advice, not for the therapist to tell 'em what to do. It's for them to build a healthy relationship with that therapist so they can figure out what their boundaries actually are.

Patrick Balsley: That's, you know, it's 

B. Reeves: key. Yeah. So we have this new podcast here and it's inf. I know we've talked about this a little bit before, but will you just talk about the genesis of champagne problems? You know where it is now compared to where it came 

Patrick Balsley: from. Sure. It was my idea. Sure. 

Robbie Shaw: I gotta tell a funny story.

Robbie Shaw: We went to [00:28:00] Florida and Patrick introduced me to somebody he knew and he goes, this is Robbie, he's on my podcast. I don't think he knew he did it and he didn't mean to, but I was like, oh, okay. I've meant to do that. It was hilarious. I don't remember that at all. Um, so yeah. So the, uh, It started with me wanting to write a book.

Robbie Shaw: So alcohol has been a part. I say this all the time, alcohol's been a part of my life since the day I was born. And my mom hates hearing this story and she won't watch this, so it doesn't matter. But my dad was wasted on the night that I was born, and so he didn't make it to the, to my birth. I think he was at a Carolina State game.

Robbie Shaw: Uh, and that's always been a funny story and all that, but honestly, it's a. Hurtful. Um, but you know, so from day one, alcohol has influenced me in some way. Then of course, I grew up in a very alcoholic household. I became addicted to alcohol. Now I'm in recovery, and then I studied it. Now I work in the field.

Robbie Shaw: You know, it's just been a part of my life [00:29:00] from day one to today and. That doesn't make me unique. Um, but it does give me some passion around wanting people to know what I know. And I think a lot of that comes from working in this field and seeing so many people and families and, and things just destroyed by it.

Robbie Shaw: And not that that's what happens to everybody that drinks, but it does happen to a lot of people and it just really, uh, pulls up my heartstrings. And so I thought if I could write a. Kind of sharing everything I've learned throughout all of my years and all that kind of, are we allowed to cuss all your wisdom?

Robbie Shaw: Wisdom? We are. I think so. Do y'all cuss on this thing? Sure. 

Patrick Balsley: Probably not. We can edit it out. We can bleep it. 

Robbie Shaw: All right. I'll say bs. All that kind of, so all that, all that. Whatever. Um, And so I wanted to write this book. And so I, uh, started trying, uh, I'm not very good at sitting down and writing a book, it turns [00:30:00] out.

Robbie Shaw: So somebody was like, eh, nobody's gonna buy it anyway because nobody knows you and this thank you, but, uh, okay. And they were like, you need to find a following, you know, write a blog, do a podcast. And I was like, Boom. I wanna do a podcast. Asked another friend of mine if he wanted to sit in my living room, a guy in recovery with me, and we were just like, man, let's just shoot the breeze.

Robbie Shaw: You know, just talk about this stuff and just start talking about alcohol and just kind of what we've learned and you know, lots of insight and experience and wisdom and all this stuff. And he said no. Uh, and, and so I just didn't know what I was gonna do other than I wanted to do this. And Patrick and I had been introduced, you know, via like Instagram through one of our friends.

Robbie Shaw: I think we even followed each other because we had both been told a number of times that we needed to meet each other, but we're both. Pretty stubborn and never really reached out to do it despite being told we needed to. And we just kind of like fi kind of watched each other from a distance. And then one day, I don't know what happened, one of us reached out and was like, man, let's grab some lunch.

Robbie Shaw: We're, you know, it seems like we're supposed to do this. [00:31:00] And we did and we hit it off and we, um, You know, we've been in love ever since. Mm-hmm. And, uh, it's been very, 

Patrick Balsley: I wanna, I, I wanna know who that first guy was. I never 

Robbie Shaw: heard that story. I don't know. There was somebody, I never told 

Patrick Balsley: somebody before me that 

Robbie Shaw: denied you.

Robbie Shaw: Well, so we sat down at lunch and, uh, and I started talking about the way that I think about alcohol and the way that I feel like the, our society and culture thinks about it, and how there's just this terrible disconnect that's deserving so many. And Patrick's like, yep, yep, yep. He's like, all right, so I've got a podcast I want to do.

Robbie Shaw: Would you be a guest on it? He's like, of course. Of course. And so that's how we started and, and we finish up lunch and we drive off and within 30 seconds I text him. I was like, How about co-host? And he is like, yep. And it just kinda went from there. Um, and so we just started talking about it and thinking about it, and we ended up, you know, getting production crew and, and it really just expanded.

Robbie Shaw: But, you know, the, the, the value in, in telling all this is [00:32:00] really about the mission and how. Created the mission was a, was around everything we talked about at, at the beginning of this conversation in that we didn't want to talk about alcohol with shaming, with labels, with, in the, in the realm of addiction.

Robbie Shaw: And, and do you have a problem? Because we knew that we weren't gonna reach a lot of people doing it that way. Nobody wants to be, have their finger pointed out. And that's, and whether we're doing that or not, that's what it feels like. Mm-hmm. When all you do is talk bad about alcohol. So we were like, Let's find a different way to talk about it.

Robbie Shaw: What if we talk about it kind of through a wellness lens and then it's just like, Hey, yeah, maybe it does, maybe it doesn't, but here's the science and does this apply to you? And maybe it does, maybe it doesn't. And that's how we started it off. And it worked. It worked. People listen. Love it. It's crazy. I wanna hear your version of this.

Patrick Balsley: Yeah, well, I cleaned up with everything. I, no, Robbie pays me reverse the roll small fee so he can pretend [00:33:00] it's his. Um, no, yeah, I mean, that was all right on. Um, yeah, I mean, this has been super cool. It was like, one of the things when I, when Robbie texted me and was like, Hey, will you be a co-host? I was like, you know, yeah.

Patrick Balsley: And I, I. Expect it to, you know, move as fast as it did. It was like, you know, two weeks later we're in a damn studio with a production crew and there's cameras in our faces, our roll. Yeah. And I was like, whoa, dude. Um, so yeah, it, it's, it's been really neat to kinda. And, and thank God for Robbie and the rest of the team, cuz I don't do anything except really show up and, and, and talk.

Patrick Balsley: I mean, they do all the back end stuff and take care of all the marketing and production and all that. So it's been very, very, I've had a really easy, easy ride. Yeah. Um, but it's just been awesome to be a part of it and. You know, I feel like, I feel like we've, we've touched a lot of people that, that wouldn't, [00:34:00] um, wouldn't have received that message otherwise.

Patrick Balsley: Um, I'm, I'm very aligned with our mission and in this like, more inclusive way to look at this. Um, cuz I've always been kind of obsessed ever since I got into recovery. Um, I was just kind of really taken back by all the. Barriers that are in place for people to engage in getting help and all this kind of like, things that are non-starters for a lot of people.

Patrick Balsley: Mm-hmm. Um, not to mention the fact that we should be addressing stuff way earlier than we are. Mm-hmm. And we don't do a good job of getting people engaged, um, and services and prevention and, you know, early intervention. It's like, you know, one of the one. Analogies I always hear people use, it's like we, we treat addiction and alcoholism.

Patrick Balsley: Like, like if you're like a cancer patient instead of [00:35:00] like pre-screening or mm-hmm. Or treatment when you have stage one, it's like, oh, we got no hold on. We just gotta wait for stage four cancer. Mm-hmm. To come in before we come back and see, before we do any treatment. And it's, it's always just been insane to me the fact that there ha, we haven't come up with a way.

Patrick Balsley: To get people engaged in early, you know, and do early interventions that actually work instead of like trying to pigeonhole somebody that's like a moderate, you know, may meet criteria for mild or moderate use disorder. And it's like, oh yeah, but yeah, you really got, you gotta say you're severe, you gotta call yourself an addict and mm-hmm You gotta sit in all these groups that you don't really need and you know, And you gotta go to these meetings that you, you despise and hate.

Patrick Balsley: Well, how do we come up with something that meets those people where they're at mm-hmm. That they can engage in? Um, cause we just, we don't have a lot of stuff like that. And I feel like there's a new wave of, of services and, and [00:36:00] information and ways, you know, to help people that are kind of in that space.

Patrick Balsley: And I think, you know, that's kind of been one of the things. We've been able to do. 

B. Reeves: It's a great analogy though about the, you know, Yeah, it's nuts. No screenings and all of a sudden you just just wait until it's, yeah. You 

Patrick Balsley: know? So acute. Well, you got the thing in the doctor's office now where it's like they hand you that damn card with the blunt crayon that's like, oh, you've thought about, you know, hurting yourself today.

Patrick Balsley: And then, you know, you fill it out and then the doctor just like slings it on the table. You know, 

Robbie Shaw: it's, hold on. Great. I 

Patrick Balsley: haven't had the pleasure. Yeah, you haven't had that yet with like the, with like the stringy thing on it, you know, the, you haven't, you haven't seen that in the doctor's office? Maybe I go to a, I'm due for a physical though.

Patrick Balsley: Crappy Doctor Hope. Get it this time. 

B. Reeves: Um, that's, yeah, that, that's so true. I, um, yeah, we just, it, and it reminds me of also like kind of the older way of doing detox too. Um, waiting until the person is miserable, then treating [00:37:00] the detox symptoms. Sure. You know, instead of like we do here, getting ahead of it right when they get here and making them comfortable right away.

B. Reeves: Not to promote what we do here, but it did make me think of that. Yeah. 

Robbie Shaw: Um, well, and just that, I mean, that opens up a whole can of a conversation of, of. Prevention versus treat. Yes. Right. I mean, that's, that's our society announce the prevention. 

Patrick Balsley: Yeah. I mean, yeah. We're trying to put you out business. 

B. Reeves: Well believe we, you know, I say this at least, you know, five times a week.

B. Reeves: I hope you never darken our doors here. Yeah. Talk to about this all the time. And I mean it, you know. Yeah. But yeah, I 

Robbie Shaw: mean, uh, but that's just the way we are, man. That's, we have an obese culture. Yep. But we don't change our food system. No. Right. 

Patrick Balsley: Yeah, and we don't. And we don't treat 

Robbie Shaw: that addiction, treat sickness, not 

Patrick Balsley: prevent it.

Patrick Balsley: You know, we don't talk about that. I mean, addiction is like the biggest public health crisis ever. Yeah, right. You know, 

Robbie Shaw: we're addicted to our 

Patrick Balsley: phones, all the cardiovascular stuff, all that stuff. It's all addiction. Yeah. All addiction 

Robbie Shaw: related. 

B. Reeves: Do y'all, in your work and through the podcast, maybe [00:38:00] tangentially work with people or who have more process addiction, phone shopping, gaming.

Robbie Shaw: I don't think that's as common to admit these days, and I don't think people think of it as an acute issue. Right? I mean, it's, it's something that we've yet. To see what its long-term effects are. We will, you know, I mean we're starting to see it in kids. Mm-hmm. Uh, anxiety and depression, you know, I mean, so partially, I mean, I think in the work that we do in knowing that, especially, especially cuz we, Patrick and I both work.

Robbie Shaw: More in the holistic space, kind of looking at the entire wellness spectrum and, and screen time is absolutely one of them. Mm-hmm. Yeah. Uh, so we, you know, we certainly talk about that in nutrition and, you know, exercise and all those things, but especially when you're talking with kids. But, but it's the same, same thing goes with like parenting.

Robbie Shaw: I mean, it's like, you know, it's constantly telling my daughter to get off her phone while I'm on my phone. Mm-hmm. Mm-hmm. Yeah. [00:39:00] 

B. Reeves: Well, uh, give me, if you would, both of you, just an example or two of people who you have reached who there've been just a positive outcome from someone, whether you knew 'em before or not from 

Robbie Shaw: Champion, from the podcast.

Robbie Shaw: Yeah, man. Um, I mean, we've had a ton. Yeah, tons. Like we get, yeah. I mean, I get emails and messages. I mean, not daily. It's not you. Packed, but we get really meaningful notes, you know, verbally and through, you know, digital messages of, oh man, I came across this and I was looking to to dial it back. Or I was looking to learn a little bit more about, you know, the correlation between anxiety and alcohol and your podcast did this for me.

Robbie Shaw: And, and we get that a lot. That's awesome. It's really cool. I 

Patrick Balsley: mean, I, it's very gratifying. I've run. Multiple people that I had relationships with in high school or college where I hadn't seen him in 15 or 20 years. Mm-hmm. Like I went to a, I went to a [00:40:00] alumni like football game at my high school and a guy that I hadn't seen in 20 years.

Patrick Balsley: It was actually a guy in my classes, little brother mm-hmm. Who was like four years younger than me. Walks up to me and he shakes my hand and he's like, Hey man, I just wanna let you know I haven't had a drink in a year and a half. That's awesome. And he goes, I didn't go to treatment. Like, I'm not, I never considered myself an alcoholic.

Patrick Balsley: Um, and, and I, I don't, I still don't. But, but you know, I started listening to your podcast and really started to question how alcohol was affecting my, my life. And I decided to, to put it down. And he was like, you know, it was all cuz of listening to your show. And, and that's, I've had multiple, and I know Robbie has too, people that have told me that, oh, it's, uh, it's pretty really 

B. Reeves: cool.

B. Reeves: Cool. Yeah. What do you say to somebody like that? Um, other than, I'm so glad to hear that, but I mean, in, in terms of sustained recovery, if somebody's not, you know, does it need the full Monty, you know, of like, what I need, you know? Mm-hmm. [00:41:00] Which is a lot of work for me to. Sober and relatively serene with somebody who's 

Patrick Balsley: not, they figure it out.

Patrick Balsley: Cuz usually, you know people in that, I'm not saying that demographic, but people that don't meet criteria for severe issues or they're, they're doing it because they can see the correlation of their alcohol use and having a negative impact on their life once they actually stop drinking. Mm-hmm. And they feel the full effects.

Patrick Balsley: And they can like tell, I, I had lunch with a guy the other day that told me that he quit for a year. Um, just a part of a like challenge. Mm-hmm. And then he had like two beers one night as he reintroduced it and woke up the next day and was like, never felt like total crap. Mm-hmm. And he never realized like how much of a negative impact it was having on him cuz he was doing it every day and he was so used to it.

Patrick Balsley: Mm-hmm. It's like, it's like cutting 

Robbie Shaw: out sugar and then sugar. Yeah. Yeah. 

Patrick Balsley: It's like, [00:42:00] yeah. You feel like crap. Yeah. So it, it's. Once you have, if you have somebody that already has their kind of life together and they're, and they have some sort of like mo external motivation to engage with life. Mm-hmm. Um, once they cut alcohol out and realize like how much more engaged they can be and how much more productive they are, how much more present they are with their families, they start to realize like, oh my God, I've been stuff suppressing all.

Patrick Balsley: You know mm-hmm. Emotions and unhealthily managing stress. And now I have all these new outlets to manage this stress, and they kind of get really curious about it. Mm-hmm. And they become, you know, more engaged in more holistic stuff. Mm-hmm. It's like all the, now I'm gonna start a meditation practice.

Patrick Balsley: Mm-hmm. Now I'm gonna do some ice baths and you know, now I'm gonna go, you know, I'm gonna go exercise more next month. I'm gonna, you know, start training for a marathon. And then they start, all this stuff starts to snowball and they see the positive impacts of all this stuff. And it all started with them changing their relationship to alcohol.

Patrick Balsley: Mm-hmm. And they feel [00:43:00] better, they start to realize that their relationship with their family's better, their marriage is getting better. Mm-hmm. Um, they're more productive at work, and then it just, it starts to build. Yeah. 

Robbie Shaw: Love. All good. Thank you. Yeah. Thanks for having us. 

B. Reeves: Yeah. 

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