4 Lessons I Learned From FOUR Years Of Sobriety

George Kalantzis
3 min readJul 7, 2023
Sobriety Reflection Hike

I stood on the edge of darkness, contemplating a fateful step that could end it all, but something within me spoke. That voice was enough to make me pause and reconsider.

That pivotal night, which could have marked the end of my life, became a profound turning point — a powerful awakening that propelled me toward something greater.

Many of us believe that the answer lies in seeking more, caught in the illusion that the grass is greener on the other side. We are enticed by the allure of escape, mistakenly believing that freedom lies outside of ourselves. However, through four years of sobriety, I have discovered that the true beauty of life can only be unveiled by embracing our challenges, facing our inner demons, and finding strength from within.

While the topic of the process of getting sober requires extensive exploration, for now, I would like to share four crucial characteristics that have aided countless individuals, including myself, on their journeys to sobriety.

Feelings Don’t Define Your Worth Unless You Allow Them To

When I first chose to quit drinking, I experienced an emotional rollercoaster, with daily highs and lows that tested who I was as a man.

Anger, sadness, and anxiety often filled my days, causing me to question my progress and self-worth. However, with the support of therapy, men’s work, and the unwavering support of loved ones, I eventually found peace.

Through this process, I learned that emotions are natural and temporary. They do not define who I am but rather present opportunities for growth and self-reflection. They serve as messengers guiding us through life’s journey.

As Carl Jung wisely stated, “You are not what happened to you, but who you choose to become.” Reframing our perception of self frees us from the burdensome quest for external validation, allowing our true worth to shine through.

Words Matter More Than You Think

While the saying goes that actions speak louder than words, I beg to differ. In my experience, suppressing my voice led to inner chaos, and seeking distractions became a costly escape.

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George Kalantzis

George is a professional storyteller, a dad to a sassy and adventurous eight year-old girl, and the author Of Nowhere To Go