Episode 43: The Deeper Work of Addiction Recovery with Mike Govoni

addiction recovery specialist Mike Govoni

brownish-pink water color background with white text that reads "anything can be an opportunity to awaken consciousness'

All healing is self-healing, a journey back home to ourselves. So, anything is an opportunity to awaken consciousness: illness, addiction, divorce, a death, financial struggle, parenting, a move, a relationship — literally anything and everything is an opportunity to awaken consciousness.

A big take-away from this episode for me is that there is a difference between getting sober and healing. Sure, sobriety is a big step. It’s often the step that law enforcement, child protective services, religious organizations, and family members of addicts are looking for.

But sobriety, is NOT healing. Healing requires discharging the trauma energy that led to such disconnection, pain, and suffering that an addict feels they have no other choice but to self-medicate with drugs and alcohol. I’m excited for conversations that include healing trauma as part of addiction recovery.

This is part 2 of my interview with holistic healer and addiction recovery specialist Mike Govoni. To listen to part one, go to Episode 41: Addiction & Recovery — Consciousness Prevents Relapse.

addiction recovery specialist Mike Govoni

Mike is passionate about helping people in recovery experience greater healing and transformation. As a person in recovery for over 16 years, Mike has personally walked this path and knows what it takes to not only recover but heal. Mike has overcome hurdles such as childhood trauma, addiction, and chronic illness that led him to have a profound spiritual awakening that he believes was the catalyst to his healing.

Mike’s extensive experience in the addiction/recovery field includes supporting three major hospital emergency rooms in Boston for the opioid epidemic. Today, Mike has a thriving practice a Trauma-Informed Recovery Coach where he believes helping people create a feeling of safety within their own body is essential to becoming well and achieve long-term recovery. Mike believes in addressing the whole person, not only to achieve greater freedom and abstinence from harmful substances, but to empower clients with tools and resources to meet everyday life with more resilience, presence, and ease.


Show Notes

In this episode with Mike, we…

  • discuss the importance of honoring the act of putting the substance down as its own step in recovery and at any point in the healing journey
  • talk about titrating trauma out of the nervous system
  • discuss the completion of trauma cycles
  • talk about how wild animals discharge trauma energy from their bodies and how that relates to humans
  • discuss Mike’s hospital work in Boston during the opioid epidemic
  • talk about the role of spirituality and consciousness in addiction recovery
  • challenge the efficacy of 12-step programs
  • share that addiction is an opportunity to awaken consciousness
  • talk about Christ consciousness (in a very non-religious way)

My course Belief Beyond the Binary is available for pre-sale. Take 30% off the retail price of the course and receive a FREE 3-month membership to the Trauma Healers Circle when you purchase Belief Beyond the Binary before June 24.


Hey, Mike, welcome back to the podcast. Let’s continue our conversation about addiction and trauma and recovery. And let’s talk some more about the nuts and bolts of deeper work in addiction recovery. Can we do that? Let’s do it all right. I don’t even know where to start, cause I don’t know anything about deeper recovery as an addict or an alcoholic.

So give it to me like, like Michael Scott says to Oscar, explain this to me. Like I’m five.

So yeah, a lot of people, getting sober and getting into recovery is the first step. And it’s I don’t minimize it of course, because it’s necessary for deeper healing and transformation, to put the substances down. But it’s also just the beginning. And what I mean by that is just the beginning is.

As we spoke earlier in the conversation that using drugs and alcohol is just a response to the pain that’s inside and putting down the substance necessarily doesn’t get rid of the pain that’s inside or the trauma that’s inside. So that’s when the person begins to embark on their deeper journey, into healing.

What I’ve found in my own personal experiences, there had to have been a time where I was ready for that. If you were to tell me, to start doing my inner work and start, healing the wound with my inner child and start, Titrating the traumatic energy out of my nervous system.

When I was early into recovery, I would be like, what language are you speaking to me? I don’t understand. I don’t that doesn’t, I don’t resonate with that. What’s going on. And it’s often that people come to a pivotal point in their life and recovery that gets them on the path of really healing. So yeah, for example, some of my clients, having a real first relationship, that’s actually meaningful, full to them in their recovery. And then it gets broken apart or they have a bad breakup or. Anxiety or depression set in, these are huge moments where people start to shift and say, okay there’s something else I need to do.

There’s more work that needs to be done or traumatic memories start to reoccur and they don’t know what to do with them. So there’s something that I think Narges us on our path to healing, even though we’re in recovery, I’ve met some people too that have just dove deep into the work from the beginning, such as, as we go on and share about psychedelic therapy and so forth that they get right into it because they’ve been suffering with an opiate addiction or heroin addiction, and they just need something.

Profound such as, ibogaine ceremony or a therapy for them to really be catapulted Iowasca journeys. And that kind of gets them on the path really quick. Now, myself and other people like Luke storey have said, why don’t you just start doing your deep work in the beginning and just really get to it and get it done?

It’s a process and many of us aren’t really ready for that. Many of us just want to put the substances down and start there, which is okay. And what I’m saying is there’s deeper work than that than just putting the substance down. Yeah, for sure. So you said a phrase that I haven’t heard ever before, so I want you to elaborate on it.

You said titrating the trauma energy out of the nervous system. What does that mean? Yeah, so trauma, once again, trauma. Is what happens within our bodies, right? So there can be a traumatic situation and that affects us in our nervous system. For example, there’s a sense of overwhelm that our nervous system couldn’t process, maybe it’s a rape, maybe it’s a car accident.

Maybe, it’s a fall. Maybe it’s a, a violent attack. Maybe it’s something. And those are the big traumas per se, that are obvious. But what happens with trauma is the energy the cycle of energy gets stuck and we don’t complete it. So healing from trauma is all about completing those cycles, which include titrating and allowing the energy that stuck in the nervous system to be released out of it.

There are basically a couple situations where trauma happens and in most situations, for example, humans and domesticated animals become traumatized animals in the wild. Do get traumatized, but rarely, and from studying the work of Peter Levine and his great contribution by looking at mammalians and mammals and seeing how their nervous systems respond to threat in the wild and how the animal naturally allows the energy to discharge from its body.

So it can find that balance again, that homeostasis. So where it’s not thinking about the Wolf, that was just chasing it. For example, when there’s there’s great videos on YouTube, as it relates to like a gazelle, getting chased by a cheetah and the cheetah catching the gazelle and true story. I’ll just give you a little synopsis or explain it.

Cheetah catches the gazelle it fixates. It has its snout over the Gazelle’s nose. The gazelle drops down. This is being videotaped. You could watch it and we can put it in the show notes for the listeners, because that was clearly what it looks like to be dead. There’s no rhythm in the chest.

There’s no breath. The eyes are glazed over it’s slumped. It’s completely done. All of a sudden baboons come in. They state-based chase off the cheetah. So the gazelle is just laying there. People are watching it. And all of a sudden you see the chest come up and start breathing again. So sympathetic arousals kicked in.

Now the breasts it coming. And then before you know it, but the gazelle sits up and he trembles in shakes for about two minutes. And what’s happening when that animal is doing that, he’s discharging the energy. From his nervous system, because when he got caught by the cheetah, he had so much energy in the system that he didn’t get a chance to complete it.

So all that activation right. Is being let out and released after the fact. And he shakes rattles and rose and he gets up and he runs away. And I’m sure he doesn’t think about that cheater again. Now us humans, our prefrontal cortex gets in the way. So our hierarchy of thinking, and sometimes it gets in the way such as, oh my God.

I’m feeling these certain feelings or trembling or shaking when I’m in a session or when an emotional release comes up, how often do we suppress what we’re feeling? Because we don’t want someone to see us crying. We don’t want to see us just, we don’t want to feel this. Overwhelmed feeling right.

Of this discharge. So we just shut it down. And with the help of someone who knows what they’re doing in safety, we can allow ourselves to feel what’s underneath and what’s connected the emotion that’s connected to the story, right? So there’s the story. And then there’s the traumatic activation that’s actually embedded in the nervous system.

So helping the person titrate in and let that out a little at a time, supports the healing. Not too much because we don’t want to retraumatize, but we hold safe space for that energy to be discharged. Then from there, this new life force can come in with creativity, with ability to access the present moment.

And this is a process over time. So that’s the situation with titrating and releasing the energy out of the nervous system. Love it. So I am a huge fan of shaking and I would definitely like to put that video that you just talked about in the show notes. The gazelle, if it was laying there, not breathing eyes glazed over.

Totally. Still. Was it in a freeze response? Absolutely. It’s ketonic immobility, which if we translate that to some neuroscience, now it would be the dorsal vagal response of the nervous system from Stephen Porges. So you’re totally disconnected. You’re shut down. We would go into this state when we were going to be eaten by predators.

So we wouldn’t feel but many of us, when trauma drama happens in situations happen, we disassociate, we check out, we don’t allow ourselves, trauma victims don’t have the ability or access to their bodies per se. We’re living between the chin and the crown again, in this world of constant thinking and past or future.

So yes, that would be a dorsal vagal response. Yeah, incredible. I also love that you pointed out that we’re mammals too, just like gazelle is, but because of our cultural conditioning, These responses that we would normally have if we were living 10,000 years ago, or if we were wild, like the Gonzalez of shaking, crying having these like physical discharges of energy would be completely normal, but due to our cultural conditioning, they’re not normal.

And we’re crazy if we do these things and yeah, it just, it seems to me like our culture itself has set us all up to live in this constant state of like chronic stress and chronic trauma, because there’s these like weird societal rules about what behaviors are acceptable to do in public. And then also, like I’ve worked with people, one-on-one doing some trauma coaching and people have told me that even when no one is watching, even when they’re alone in their house, they have a really hard time.

Just shaking or moving or crying because they feel silly or stupid or weird. So yeah, I’m just sharing that. I don’t really have a question. I’m just sharing that. Do you have any thoughts about that? Yeah. And I think in older cultures, when let’s just say back in the day, when we went out to hunt and a Brontosaurus came over and ripped our friend apart to pieces, and we watched that there were ways of coming back into community, into tribe and discharging that energy such as, dancing around a fire and expressing our voices and really stomping out that energy in community.

Now we’re isolated in these little boxes, suppressed by a society that’s built upon disconnection, Chama isolation, and many of us don’t have the tools, but the what’s very beautiful and interesting about this whole thing is the body has the ability and knows what to do when the right.

Guidance and support. Is there such as the work of Steve forgetting his last name, but it’s called organic intelligence, very similar to somatic experiencing. And he talks about the natural rhythms of the body and the body knows what to do. It knows how to discharge this energy. But we have to get out of the way and we have to actually allow the feelings and the sensations to come in.

And while we feel the support and allow them to move through us, because once again, many of us are coming up, up against this glass ceiling. And if we feel these feelings, it almost feels like the original trauma. So we, yeah. So we have to begin to let that go. And that’s a scary thing to do. For sure.

So I guess I have a two part question we talked about whenever our feelings are so overwhelming that we just check out, we just associate, when you go into that freeze response, do people, because again I’m not an addict or an alcoholic, so I really don’t know how this thought process works.

And this will be educational for me. People who have a propensity towards alcoholism or addiction, do they want to use alcohol or drugs? Because it helps them to dissociate and it helps them to check out or. And then whenever it’s gone and maybe they relapsed later because they find themselves in a stressful situation.

Again, they haven’t done the work around that and they haven’t discharged that old energy from their body. So a new stress happens and they don’t know how to deal with it. So that only thing they know how to reach for is the drugs and alcohol again, is it for disassociating because I know it’s for numbing, and just associating is a way that our bodies like numb themselves to feeling whatever is overwhelming for us to feel. Is that how drugs and alcohol and addiction are involved in people trying to self-medicate to try to bring on that disassociation because it’s just too much. Yeah. So it’s a great question.

And from my perspective, some people use drugs and alcohol to connect to and makes them more social. They can be themselves, they can get on the dance floor. They can, Connect better per se, but all it always, anything outside of ourselves that we become dependent on always comes with a, it’s like a double-edged sword.

It comes with a price. So people are using or the addict always uses the substance for a particular reason. So in my case, I used here’s my hypothesis, too. If you look at the polyvagal theory, the work of Dr. Stephen Porges, and he breaks down that we have these three gears, ventral bagel, right?

Connected, safe, social engagement. We have sympathetic fight or flight too much energy. Then we have the red zone, dorsal vagal, not enough energy. I think, depending upon. How our nervous systems were pruned and wired depends upon which type of stimulant or relaxing that we choose. Now for me, I was always sympathetic driven.

I was always on the go couldn’t stop, staying busy, even in long-term recovery. And I loved downers because they allowed me to just shift those gears and just settle in and just check out. Now, some people love methamphetamines they’re shut down. They’re completely, disconnected. So when they do it to them, they’re out, and talking and driving and moving.

And so that I think that people use substance, whether it’s conscious or unconscious, depending upon how their nervous system is already wired. Now, once again, to get back to your question, is that, is it, yeah. Some people use it to check out some people use it to connect, so it’s always doing something, but everyone’s different.

Yeah. That totally makes sense. I’m glad you pointed out that some people use it to come alive and get on the dance floor and let loose for my own experience with my, my drug use is limited to like cannabis and psychedelics. I’ve never used anything other than that which I don’t even consider them to be drugs.

I guess I’ve never used drugs. And then alcohol for me has been like there’ve been times in my life where I could go and I can drink with friends and have a good time and maybe catch a buzz and like dance or whatever. But most of the time I really avoid alcohol altogether because.

Like drinking in the moment feels fun or, whatever. But then it’s not too long after that, that I just, even if I had just caught a little buzz and didn’t even get drunk or something, I get like anxious and I feel really weird. And sometimes I like wake up in the middle of the night, like really hot, and then I can’t go back to sleep after drinking.

And so I avoid it altogether, but it’s just curious I don’t think I’ve ever had even the accessibility to like a substance that I would want to use to. Cause I’m like, you like the driven always going, always doing like my mind is constantly running, going a million miles an hour. That’s my norm.

And so anxiety is something that I’ve struggled with a lot because I’m in that hyper aroused state all the time. And a lot of people drink because it slows everything down. It’s a downer, but for me, I’ve just found like it may work for an hour or two, and then I’m just like right back up feeling even more anxious than I felt before.

So it’s just interesting how how that works, do you have any thoughts on that? On maybe my body’s just was never, addiction was just never going to be in the plan for me or in the cards for me, like maybe that’s what it is. And so I’ve definitely done other things like I’ve done.

I’ve overworked, I’ve been a perfectionist, like I’ve tried to discharge my buzz energy in other ways, but just like using substances never never felt right for me because they never really seemed to give me the outcome that I thought I was going to get. Does that make sense for sure. And for you to have that like connection in insight and awareness within yourself is really beautiful, but for the addict or alcoholic, that line is basically non-existent and whatever happens within the body, which causes the phenomenon of craving, that sets in and the person is often running.

Now everyone’s nervous system is. Wired and cultivated a little differently. For example, my sister grew up with similar, obviously similar household, same mom and dad. I’ve had some additional wounding and so forth that she may haven’t, she didn’t develop addiction. She didn’t develop early onset disease and some people become addicts and alcoholics in the same household and their brothers and sisters don’t.

So I think, it depends upon a lot of factors, but for example, maybe you got support. In different areas or maybe, you came to that realization that alcohol wasn’t working for me. So I’m going to switch the Boston and start, just working my ass off and, achieving that way.

I think we’re all addicted to something in some way, form or fashion doesn’t necessarily have to be substances. But yes it’s very complex and everyone’s different. Yeah. Good answer. Really good answer. Yeah, it is interesting. I want people listening to hear what you said about you can grow up in identical situations and it will affect every person in that situation differently.

And it’s so interesting how our nervous systems have different levels of resiliency and flexibility. And I don’t know exactly I don’t know if it’s genetic, I don’t know if it’s the stress of your mother’s womb when she was pregnant with you. And maybe if she’s more stressed with you than she was with your sister who knows?

Even my own kids, like they act totally differently about things and I have all kinds of theories as to why that is. But yeah, that’s just really interesting. And I want people to understand that even if you feel like you had. Quote unquote, a great childhood great parents, but you still have these behaviors and these habits that you can’t figure out, you can’t start out.

And you’re wondering like I didn’t have any big trauma. I wasn’t raped. I wasn’t abused. I wasn’t, I didn’t grow up poor or whatever that that’s the big misconception I think about trauma is that it has to be like some major event and not just the water that you’re swimming in every day that you’re growing up or something.

For sure. I’ve met people in the hospital that I’m met this one particular gentleman suffering so bad with alcohol, with alcoholism, young guy too. And I asked him what his, what his life was like. And he, he said No. My mom was an alcoholic, which obviously in itself has its own trauma, right?

When you have an alcoholic parent and he said, my dad was super successful and he was a multimillionaire and he was flying around on jets all over the country, doing business. And he dropped me off in the best boarding school in the country at ninth grade. And he picked me up at 12th grade and I said, wow, like talk about trauma.

Yes, everything was provided, played for the best sports teams, best private school, all the money he could have. And yet there was a total disconnect between his caregivers, the ones who were loving him, the ones who needed to be there for him, the ones who were supposed to teach him and really, show him that love and presence, his parents.

And yet they were nowhere to be found. So this isn’t this isn’t uncommon. So it’s, trauma is very misunderstood and even attachment trauma and the lack of attunement as an infant, because your mother possibly may have been too overwhelmed and doesn’t know or can’t connect with you, or is too, for example doesn’t give you the space as an infant to really connect and have the experience to look around and really take in your environment.

But if the mother energy is too overwhelming, trying to, take care of the baby in such a way with a baby can’t orientate itself and find, it’s balanced as does own nervous system, but feels that overactive access energy from the mum that can be traumatizing for the infant.

So it’s, there’s a lot of things, a lot of moving parts happening, when we’re young and it’s not all about. War trauma, sexual molestation, physical abuse. It can be attachment. Yeah, absolutely. Thanks for clarifying that. So you do support work in hospitals and with people in recovery, right?

I no longer do that work, but I did that for almost three years for the opiate epidemic in Boston. What was that like? That was the first couple of weeks I was there. I was like, oh my God, I cannot do this. So being in an emergency room, that energy is very difficult. At least if you’re very sensitive like I am.

And once again, my oldest theory is that people who are addicted are all, we’re all empath. So that’s another story for another day. But I was taking in all this energy in this hospital, people suffering and I was like, oh my God, this is overwhelming. And then I just switched the gear couple of crystals in my pocket.

I asked for protection and I went in there and I was like I was like a little secret weapon. And what I mean by that is these doctors in a white coat, they do great work and so forth in emergency room is really helpful when you have a critical trauma, let’s just say accident or so forth, but they don’t know what to do with drug addicts, alcoholics.

They don’t listen to them. They don’t ask them, to share what’s really going on and how they can really be present. But in, because. Alcoholics and addicts experience more trauma than most people. We’re very hypervigilant. We know who’s looking out for our best interest. We know who we can trust and who we can’t trust.

So when a lot of these people who come in, habitually over and over again, street drug addicts, some of the worst addicts you can possibly see abscesses in their arms, just amazing things that they go through. And they know who’s actually looking out for them. They know when the doctor’s just pushing them off and trying to clear out the emergency bed for someone else.

And they know when someone else is listening to them. So if I shared a couple stories with you, you would be floored of what I actually listened to in that emergency room. For example, the 70 year old woman who came in, she was a drunk and she would shoot, she’s been drinking for decades.

And I said, tell me a story a little bit, if that’s okay. And obviously I didn’t. people would poke them to March. I just gave them the space to, to share if they wanted to. And she said, my first lover left for Vietnam and I was in love with this man. First love I’ve ever had in his head, got chopped off by a rotor blade in a helicopter.

And that was heartbreaking. So I listened to her and then she said, I, and then I married this guy who was so abusive to me and I had this child that in her twenties, she got caught in the MBTA bus, her jacket did, and she got dragged and thrown into a column. And she now she’s taking care of her child that had a broken back.

So I looked at her and I said, of course you’re drinking. You’re in a lot of pain, all this pain that was never resolved. And she looked at me like I had just found, the fountain of youth or the elixir. It was like, someone listening to her and making sense of her story. I can’t tell you the stories that you wouldn’t even believe them, but yes, it was deep work.

It was a privilege to be in there with them. And it was difficult at the same time. Yeah, I can’t even imagine. Holy shit. That’s intense. It was intense. So whenever you were working with people, like in the emergency room, were you part of a process of getting them into treatment or getting them some kind of support or how did that work?

Yeah, so I was there basically as our recovery coach to listen to them and to. Find them, inpatient or outpatient support once they got discharged from the hospital. So they would go into their there that would get, all their vitals checked out. They would sometimes stay there for quite a few hours to detox or if they needed some specific medications, so they wouldn’t withdraw.

And then I would be there to support them after the fact when they were ready for discharge. And I would support them with aftercare treatment. And a lot of the times it would be, supporting them to get into a detox, supporting them to get into some sort of halfway house or a situation that they could begin to, get their feet under them.

So I wasn’t addressing them medically. I’m not a doctor, but there was a big component that I brought in there, which was my training and mind-body healing and compassionate inquiry. And really just listening to them, really just giving them the space to have these moments of aha and say, okay you’re not a piece of shit.

You’re a human being. That’s been through a lot of trauma, a lot of difficulty and much of the time coming from Boston, the so funny, because not funny, but it’s ironic. You could see the joke, patients, generational trauma. And I would ask him, where did you grow up? Oh, I grew up in salty, east Boston, this and that.

And my father did this and he was part of what he pulled you in this, what he, Bowser was an infamous, notorious gangster back inside Boston. But you could see that they, the ins the insanity they lived in was normal to them. And there was nothing normal about it, but they’re like, oh yeah, just like every other kid on the block.

And I would listen to that and I’d be like that’s not really normal. And they’d think about it, but it’s, most people don’t even know that they’ve been brought up in immense dysfunction, neglect and trauma. Yeah. And their nervous systems are so familiar with that level of dysregulation that they can’t handle calm and peace and safety because their nervous system doesn’t know what the fuck to do with that.

And that’s the beauty of like my work. I have a client right now, sober, I don’t know, probably 30 years. From Jamaica, plain, right. Old timer. And he’s suffering all from unprocessed, unresolved trauma, but he’s been sober for 30 years and he doesn’t even know what trauma is. And and I’m just like holding space for him, navigating with him, coaching with him, practicing somatic, experiencing with him.

And he’s coming alive slowly, sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly, but it’s like light dawns on mobile had I grew up in a family of six. I was the last one, everyone beat me to death and criticized me. And he suffers, late in his age with an inner critic. That’s just berating him.

Of course you have an inner critic. That’s parading you, you had a household in a family constellation that was built upon criticizing and judging, right? No, no kidding. Of course. Yeah, no kidding.

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So in your work that you did in Boston and the hospitals. Were you able to open the door towards conversations with your with those patients or those clients about consciousness and spirituality?

Yes. And at the same time, just remember they come in sometimes and just died two hours ago on a fentanyl overdose. So hearing about consciousness and that type of, having the capacity to be in that place to understand that was few and far between, but there was situations where it was a little less extreme where I could, let’s just say I could touch them in that way with their mind and just open it a little bit to say, wow holy shit, I’ve been running my whole life and what’s actually going on.

In the hospitals are very, it was crisis based. So I had to handle that as crisis. And even the work I do was people now who are in long-term recovery, that’s a challenge in itself to open them up to the consciousness, to the awareness. Because once again, when you have trauma in your nervous system, the last thing you want to do is sit with yourself.

Because everything is there. Everything is uncomfortable. Everything’s uncomfortable. So no wonder why we use drugs and alcohol. Sometimes I’ll have my clients meditate for a couple of minutes if it’s appropriate. And it’s the, they’re like screaming, this shaking, they’re rattling. They’re rolling. And I go, how was it to sit with yourself and don’t get me wrong.

I don’t support sitting meditation if it’s causing more harm. No, but sometimes just let them touch into what’s here. And it’s uncomfortable. I said, no one why, drugs and alcohol were a solution, right? It’s so uncomfortable to be with ourselves. Not that we’re bad people, but we have that.

We have the trauma that’s in the nervous system. The stories of it, the images of their, the memories of the activation is there, but got to keep going as there. And I only know this stuff because I was the king of it. I had to have a sacred illness to sit me down. And cause me to go within myself to have a profound, spiritual awakening.

Other than that, who knows, I may still have been running today, even in long-term recovery. Yeah. So the people that you work with now, your clients now, are they coming to you already sober? Mostly like you’re not actually working with people to get clean at this point, you’re working in the long-term recovery.

Exactly. I don’t work with people that are inactive addiction. People come to me who are in recovery and they’re like, ha I see your work or I’m experiencing this. And something’s up and I need more than 12 step recovery. I’ve done all the steps. I’ve done my four step, my fist up, AA.

Great. I got sober in a and not bashing it, but there’s more work to do. And this is the healing work. This is the work of addressing, processing, resolving and integrating what happened and discharging the energy from the nervous system and creating presence for yourself. Being able to touch the present moment.

Creating that container within yourself and that sense of agency to be able to handle what arises in the present moment. And this is the deeper work, doing your parts work, right? Nurturing those, the little boy, the little girl inside of you, that was abandoned. That was a betrayed, that was a abused or possibly just really opening up to.

Like most of us have a wounded little boy, a little girl running the show and we don’t even know it. And it takes a lot of consciousness and awareness to, to shift that. But my first step is to help them create safety in their skin and help them engage in the shift of their own consciousness. Now, what does that mean?

When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change. Once again, we talked about victim mode, right? If you’re in victim mode, then it’s challenging. It doesn’t mean we don’t hold space for that part of you that was victimized or that was hurt or betrayed. But once again, how do we empower them to touch into that wholeness?

That’s there to that functional adult that’s there that can hold that part of us that you know, is holding the burden of the pain. So that’s the journey. And as my mentor shared with me, all sickness, Is homesickness. All healing is self healing, a journey back home to your true self.

So illness can be an opportunity to, or is an opportunity to awaken consciousness, right? Addiction is an opportunity to awaken consciousness. Everything I’m truly believe. Everything we experience in this reality is in service for our evolution. It just depends if we’re awake and taking in the lessons, cause this is school, baby.

This is this realm is complete in school. You are here to learn. You’re here to evolve. You’re here to break karmic chains and you are here to do your work. Yeah. Yeah. If I was still in Christianity right now, I’d be like preach. I’m excited for you girl. Cause I know where you’re at.

I know how entrenched in how locked up one’s mind and sense of self and sense of the world is when you are bathed in fundamental Christianity or the dogmatic, teachings and. Practices and all of that world. So I commend you. I shared a little bit after, cause you’ve only imagined my mom’s the one that broke free when she was younger, she opened Pandora’s box.

She was telling the truth and people didn’t want to hear it. And you’re a truth teller and you’re, and this isn’t a, this isn’t about Jesus sucked or religious sucks, whatever it’s really us sharing our experience and saying that there’s more to the story people, and and yeah, you’re in prison in a way. So free yourself and the teachings are about freeing yourself. Yeah. So the fact that you have taken, your power back. And shifted to you’re a transformational character, which is a person who transforming shifts in one generation, the whole lineage and that religious Chalmer is huge.

So kudos to you. Yeah. Thanks. That’s the plan, man. That’s the plan is I’m going to heal this shit. So my kids don’t have to deal with it anymore. Of course they’ll have their own work to do for sure. And they’re going to have their own struggles. And part of being a parent on this consciousness journey is like, is recognizing I can tell my kids everything that I know about the nervous system, about discharging trauma from their bodies, feeling their feelings.

I can tell them everything I know, but really I know that they’re going to have to go through their own dark nights of the soul. In order to develop and evolve as the humans that they are. And there’s literally my parenting will not be responsible for that. Anything that I’ve done will not be responsible for that is part of their journey.

And I will always be here to support them and to love them and to show them compassion and kindness and to give them wisdom if they ask for it. But there’s I’ve just accepted that my kids are going to have their own struggles in this life. And there’s nothing I can do as a parent to stop that. And hopefully what I do teach them about trauma and the nervous system and their feelings one day, if they’re not listening to me now, hopefully one day they’ll wake up in the middle of a really hard time and there’ll be like, oh, I remember something.

My mom told me, try that out. Yeah. That’s beautiful. And to have that outlook where you are with your children as a, as an immense gift for them, and at the same time stepping out of the way. So the challenge is. Oh, the suffering that they will experience can allow them to grow and shift. Yes, absolutely.

Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. Yes, because it’s essential. It’s essential part of this human realm to experience the suffering and we don’t change by what we know. We changed by how we feel, yeah. Especially for an addict and alcoholic. We’ve been banging our head against the wall for a year.

Some of us doing the same shit and eventually what gets us to change is, oh, we feel like shit, oh, I’m 138 pounds. Cause I’m doing $500 a day. We’re at the Oxycontin’s, but this is for. Other humans too, that aren’t addicted. We do the same patterns, behaviors until they’re ready to be healed.

So giving your kids that opportunity and know that they’re going to have their own struggle and to just, show them that compassion, kindness, be with them. That’s beautiful. I would, I say, I can say this, Lindsay. I wish I had that, but me as this being, I don’t think that I don’t know if that would have been in service to me.

I truly believe now you guys may fall off your chair when I say this, because I’ve experienced so much suffering, I think as a soul to evolve, I needed exactly this. I needed to be wasted off multiple chemical sensitivity to where I can’t even breathe air for me to wake up. So I believe we all get what we need to wake up.

It just depends if we’re really listening and how bad do we want it? Yeah. Yeah. I saw it. It wasn’t a meme. It was like one of those. Things on Instagram with like flowers in the background and text on it. And it said your comfort zone is a lovely place, but no growth happens there. Yes. As Al Shanti says comfort, doesn’t lead to awakening.

Yeah. Yeah. We got, that’s why my mantra for my life is I am comfortable being uncomfortable because as soon as I start feeling the discomfort, my trauma response is to turn around and go the other way or to fight against it, to try to control it and change it somehow to try and make it more comfortable for myself.

That’s where the old. Asleep egoic, Lindsey used to live. And now I almost get excited. Whenever something is uncomfortable. I still initially have those like feelings of I just want to get rid of those. I just want this to go away. I want to change this. I want to control this. I want to manipulate this to be different than it is.

I still have that going on. But whenever I like sit with that and then lean into the discomfort even more, it’s almost bring it the fuck on this is how I am leveling up. Like I don’t get to level up without discomfort. And so the more I can lean into it, the more I’m evolving as a person and growing as a person.

And yeah, my comfort zone is a lovely place, but no growth happens there for sure. And even to normalize that a little bit for you, like this is a human condition. Yeah, for sure. Yeah. This is a human condition. Yeah. And great teachers, for example, the Buddha, this is what he taught.

Life has suffering life as Duca right. The. The unsatisfactoriness is always here, right? We’re always wanting the present moment to be other than it is. Or if only I had that, or if only had what she had or million dollars or body like that, or it was like this, it’s that’s the never ending wheel of Samsara.

And until we begin to see that within our own heart and mind, and actually work with it at the level of both mind, body, cause they’re not separate and allow what comes up when those resistances happen, allow it to pass through our body and our psyche right to hold space. This is when we begin to awaken the Buddha.

This is when we begin to awaken that Christ conscious. Yes. And we begin to hold the exp all the experiences of life and understand they’re all in flux. It’s all in motion. So grabbing on to any of it is like trying to grab onto smoke. Everything has its birth, its life and its death.

But many of us don’t have the awareness of this and permanent nature of all things. Once again, this is why consciousness is the cure to addiction. Because when you awaken this consciousness within you, this wisdom that can cut through this illusion that some pill powder, a potion is going to change the state and get them, somewhere else to solve a problem like immediately that just begins to get burnt up.

And you can come back to this. And this is all about the aspect of awakening. This is awakening this mind and wakening this heart. So it’s really beautiful, but this is the journey. I think that we’re all on. Yeah. So great. As we close out here for, if anyone is listening right now and they’re in recovery, but feeling like maybe 12 steps, isn’t taking them as far as they want to go, or they’re feeling like they’re in recovery and they’re sober, but they haven’t started doing the deeper work.

What would you tell them? I would say you’re not alone, right? Where you are, is exactly where you’re supposed to be. And how can you begin to listen to the part of you that is searching for something deeper that knows it needs to make some shifts and changes, and just begin to understand that there’s many roads to Rome.

All these rivers lead to the ocean. So there’s someone out there, maybe me, maybe someone else to support you to get from where you are now to where you want to be. We just have to begin to get support and begin to dip our toes in another place to really birth what it is we’re looking for. Yeah. We got to at least let ourselves get a little bit uncomfortable.

Yeah. Widen that window of tolerance just a little bit. So how can people work with you if they would like to have some support on their journey? So right now I offer a one-on-one coaching support and my program called healing beyond recovery. You can find me at Mike dot com, M I K E G O V O.

And I think you can put that in the show notes. I too also have a podcast called the healing beyond recovery podcast. And if you go to my website and check it out or just click apply, now that will lead you to book a complimentary call with me. I’d be more than happy to connect with you, or you can reach out to me on Instagram, on at Mike

M I K E G O V O. Amazing. Thanks so much for being here, Mike. Thanks for having me.


All right, friends as always, you can find the show notes for this episode@lindsaylocket.com. Forward slash podcast. This is episode 42. And one more reminder that my new course belief beyond the binary has gone on sale for presale. You can buy the course now before June 24th. And you will save 30% off the retail price.

And as my gift to you, I want to give you a free three month membership to the trauma healers circle. As a way to say thank you for buying the course, but also as a way to give you support while you go through the course. So you can bring your questions and concerns and. Truths that you discover about yourself, about binary belief systems and all the other things that I teach in this course, and you’ll have a community to take those questions to, or those ideas too.

When you save your seat for belief beyond the binary, you get 24 lessons in six modules. That includes 10 videos, 18 deeply healing, journaling prompts. Embodiment practices, a guided visualization. You get instant and forever access to belief beyond the binary, as soon as it releases on June 24th. And that includes any future updates or improvements that I may make to the course, it is yours.

Forever in all its forms. And in the course, I’m going to be talking about binary belief systems. These are things like cult-like ideologies, fundamentalist, ideologies, dogmas. I use the term binary belief system during the course to encompass. The binaries of fundamentalist, religion woke activism. The alt-right.

Um, and all the other binary belief systems that are out there that most of us are living under the oppression of, and we made a leap to realize it. So you’re gonna learn to identify binary belief systems and how they’ve been at work and your life. And I’m going to be calling out some binary belief systems and giving you real practical examples of what they are so that you know what to look for. And by the end of module one, you will have developed.

Amazing spiting census for how to identify by enabling systems so that you can stay far, far, far away. And then in modules two and three, we talk about the nervous system and trauma responses and why binary belief systems are so appealing and attractive to our nervous systems. Um, there’s a lot of just science woven in there. A lot of talk about trauma responses. It’s a really great couple of modules. And then in the fourth module, we’re talking about how social media fuels binary belief systems.

And so we have these algorithms that are creating echo chambers out of our feeds every day. And then whenever we’re introduced to an idea that we don’t like, or we don’t agree with. It feels like a threat in our body. And a lot of people are operating in a very dysregulated, activated, nervous system state on the internet. And I believe it’s making.

The internet kind of like the wild west, um, where everyone’s making up the rules as they go. And, um, it’s kind of an unsafe place to be right now. And so module four is going to talk. About how social media boosts, binary belief systems. And you’re going to have the opportunity to, you know, do some reflections on how you’ve shown up online, how you’ve been affected by showing up online and choose who you want to be online and be in your integrity and your authenticity.

And then in module five, I’m talking about breaking free from the binary. So this module is going to include embodiment practices. There’s several journaling prompts in this module. And it’s all about just breaking free physically. There’s some somatic experiencing, um, mentally, emotionally with the embodiment practices. Like this module is going to give you nervous system healing tools, and I’m all about building a trauma healing toolbox. So module five is trauma healing tools. You’re going to love that module. And then finally in module six.

We’re talking all about boundaries and how to set and stick to your boundaries with friends, family members, and loved ones or social media followers who are still under a binding I believe system, but they aren’t yet ready to break free themselves. It can be really tricky to navigate relationships professionally, personally, and online.

Because when people storm into your DMS or your email or your inbox or your comment section or wherever they storm into, they come carrying all of this dysregulation and activation and their bodies, and they’re taking it out on. You and on other people that you follow. And I know that everyone has experienced this to some degree. So module.

Six is all about setting boundaries with those people, um, establishing that we are our own moral authority. We are not accountable to the internet. And also how to have conversations with family members or friends who are still in a binary belief system. And who think that you have lost your mind?

Or that you have committed some grave sin by choosing to leave or not follow the binary anymore. So that’s an overview of belief beyond the binary. I’m so excited for it to release on June 24th. And if you purchase it during the presale, which is from now until June 24th. You can take 30% off the retail price. You don’t have to use a coupon code or anything. The discount is already there for you.

And when you purchase before June 24th, you get a free three month membership to my online community, the trauma healer circle. So head to Lindsay locket.com forward slash B B B. That’s three letter BS as a boy, and you can learn more about belief beyond the binary and go ahead and save your spot before June 24th. And i believe that’s all i have for you today i can’t wait to see you inside the course and i truly hope this episode and the course and all of my work is supportive on your journey thanks for being here

📍 Did you enjoy the show? Awesome. Here’s what you can do next first. Make sure you’re subscribed second. I really appreciate it. If you took a few moments to rate the podcast, finally, you can partner with me to keep putting this healing information into the world for just $5 per month. You will help keep the show ad free and freely available. If you want to go deeper and connect with me and other trauma healers in community, I invite you to join the trauma healer circle. This community is where the magic happens. You get access to bonus podcast.

Episodes monthly zoom calls. And most importantly, you’ll find your people go to Lindsey locket.com forward slash circle to join.