Pete Sousa is the  host of the The Payoff with Pete podcast. A podcast for anyone who is working on or thinking about getting sober. He also calls games for ESPN. Pete has been sober for 12 years and is passionate about carrying his message of enjoying a sober lifestyle. Pete’s sobriety was a journey that included ups and downs. His inspiring message is for anyone who needs motivation to continue on their personal sobriety journey.

Some of the things we talk about include: What was Pete’s upbringing like and when did he first realize he was an alcoholic? We delve into his professional journey with ESPN and the inspiration behind “The Payoff with Pete”. We also discuss the intriguing concept of “the gift of desperation” and how relapses fit into the recovery journey. Join us as we unravel these topics and more in today’s episode.

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  • [06:47] Pete grew up outside of Philadelphia. He had a good life, but his dad was an alcoholic.
  • [09:39] As a kid, Pete was on Adderall, and it made him feel great.
  • [11:46] He discovered in high school that alcohol took away his nerves and anxiety. He drank when he could.
  • [14:14] He also found his mom’s old prescriptions and took them.
  • [15:27] Pete found out he had cardiomyopathy which messed up his football career.
  • [16:35] Pete realized he was an alcoholic early in high school and college.
  • [20:11] Talking about your story of sobriety helps you stay sober.
  • [21:14] After college, Pete took ecstasy. He also got a job and moved to New York.
  • [22:45] Pete didn’t like how he was when he was addicted. Pete started doing cocaine in 2000, and by 2002, he was back at home living with his parents.
  • [25:02] He took his dad’s car and got stopped by the police. The next day he ended up at AA.
  • [26:14] The meetings started to work and he kept going.  He still hung out with his old friends, smoked weed, and began drinking again.
  • [28:03] He continued drinking for years and when he tried to stop it was hard. He ended up with broken relationships, trouble with the law, and a lot of different problems.
  • [30:25] It was finally time for him to go to treatment. After going to rehab, he began to change.
  • [31:37] He had a major shift in his life when he finally became coachable. He listened to people who had a life that he wanted to have.
  • [33:24] Breaking up while he was in treatment was one of the best things that happened to him. He left a toxic relationship.
  • [35:28] After his 30 days of rehab, he went to an extended care center.
  • [36:46] Pete started feeling great in sobriety and chased that feeling the same way he used to chase the alcohol and the drugs.
  • [37:24] He thought he was above working at KFC, but he got a job there anyway.
  • [40:08] Recovery jobs help you go all in. His KFC job gave him confidence and humility.
  • [43:41] After recovery, Pete began getting opportunities that he thought he would never get again. He ended up calling games and doing broadcasting jobs.
  • [45:31] After being 4 years sober, he got another job with the Hornets. He also saw Michael Jordan again.
  • [51:13] November 7th, 2011 was Pete’s sobriety date.
  • [52:28] Framing recovery as a journey.
  • [53:16] The “gift of desperation” was when Pete began to embrace the journey and go to any lengths to get sober.
  • [58:23] Pete’s suggestions for newcomers includes being honest.
  • [01:00:33] The Payoff With Pete podcast is about sobriety and inspiring people who want to get sober.

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