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If you have chronic pain, an autoimmune disease, or insomnia, you may find yourself turning to a drink for relief. This makes perfect sense. Unfortunately, drinking can act as a band-aid that’s blocking you from the cure.
How do you deal with discomfort in your body without pouring a drink? This question is at the heart of The Remedy, one of the eight Drink Archetypes. Discover why it can be challenging to keep your commitment when you have this archetype.
The good news? Work with the Remedy archetype, and you’ll develop greater emotional and physical resilience. When you do this, you can find a way to better navigate your physical ups and downs.
Click here to listen to the episode.
What You’ll Discover
The Remedy focuses more on accepting your current physical state rather than being the ideal picture of health.
How to make progress with your drinking, even when you’re struggling with pain, discomfort, or sleep issues.
How this archetype can reveal hidden factors adding to your discomfort.
Featured on the show
You are listening to the Take a Break podcast with Rachel Hart, Episode 368.
Hello friends. I am back with another episode about the drink archetypes and today we’re talking about the final archetype, The Remedy. Now, if you want to learn about the other seven archetypes, The Upgrade, The Connector, The Reward, The Escape, The Mask, The Hourglass, or The Release, you can listen to the podcast episodes that I recorded for each of them, or you can take the free quiz at findyourdrinktype.com and get a full report including your primary and secondary archetypes. Knowing the eight unconscious patterns that influence why you drink and why you reach for a drink is so important.
Today we’re talking about using alcohol to manage physical discomfort or cope with insomnia. The drink really represents a remedy I will say this, even if this archetype isn’t something that you identify with, take the time to listen to this episode anyway, because the work connected with The Remedy is something that everyone needs. Even if you never use alcohol to manage insomnia or any kind of physical pain, I will tell you this, most people at some level will struggle at points during their life trying to manage physical ups and downs. This has been totally true of me. Even if you’re in good health now, these ups and downs can’t be avoided. You might be a good sleeper and sometimes you’re still going to have sleepless nights, or you might be in great health right now, but we can’t stop the aging process and certainly living a life free of physical pain. It’s pretty much impossible unless you have a rare and dangerous condition that actually affects your pain sensing nerves. So The Remedy matters. It matters for everyone.
Now, this archetype tends to show up for people who feel as if their body has let them down. It’s not just about having a physical ailment, it’s about the emotional suffering that comes along with it. I see The Remedy archetype come up a lot when there are people who are super active. Maybe they are runners or cyclists or hikers or they’re just involved with sports and suddenly they’re unable to participate because of an injury. It shows up a lot around insomnia, chronic pain, autoimmune diseases. I also see The Remedy archetype appear quite a bit for women going through menopause.
When you start to turn to a drink to relieve an ailment, when it becomes your go to, to fall asleep or deal with back pain, it really can be tricky to cut back or stop drinking because it feels like you’re faced with a terrible choice. On the one hand, I can have this drink, or I can be in pain, or I can drink, or I can just lie awake in bed all night. I’ve worked with so many people who feel stuck when The Remedy is one of their archetypes because they are so daunted by the choice they have to make.
This is also a perfect example of how the drink archetypes can really Stymie your efforts at change. When you’re already suffering from physical discomfort, you have a lot of good reasons not to drink because alcohol is taxing your body. It’s gonna get in the way of healing, and yet it still can be really hard to cut back or stop drinking. Even though you’re super motivated and you have lots of good reasons. You may fully well know that alcohol is causing more harm than good. Still, it’s really hard to say no to temptation because this archetype is getting in the way, not because anything is wrong with you. I hear a lot of people with The Remedy archetype come to me and say, “I’ve tried to tell myself that it’s just alcohol is poison and it’s bad for me. It’s hurting my body. I keep beating myself up for drinking when I have all these health issues. I’m making it worse with alcohol. I try to get rid of all the alcohol in the house, but nothing really works long term.” It’s very easy in these situations to start to believe that something is wrong with you. Because you have what seems like a really, really good, solid reason to change, but still you’re struggling.
The problem is not you. The problem is that the way that you’re going about change, it’s not really dealing with how the habit works. It’s surface level change. You have to deal with what’s happening underneath. And what’s happening underneath when it comes to The Remedy archetype is the belief that a drink is the only thing that helps.
A drink is the only thing that helps me sleep. It’s the only thing that helps me manage my pain. It’s the only thing that makes me feel better. What really makes this archetype tricky is that let’s say you were to cut out all the alcohol from your life, it would have amazing benefits for your body for sure but it can’t make you impervious to pain. Not drinking would definitely help you devote more resources to healing, but it can’t give you your mobility back. It can totally help alleviate symptoms, but it can’t stop the aging process. It can help you rebalance your hormones and your sleep cycle. But it can’t make it so that you’ll never again have a sleepless night. And that’s really the thing that I think needs to be acknowledged here. When your body is already struggling, removing alcohol will have huge benefits, but it’s not a magic bullet. That’s why so many people who have The Remedy archetype struggle. They’re like, “Okay, but even if I stop drinking. I’m still suffering, so what’s the point?”
The work of The Remedy is learning how to separate out physical suffering from emotional suffering. I’m gonna acknowledge, just for all of you listening, this is a tough sell. It was a tough sell for me at first too, because it’s a bit like, ” You don’t know my pain. You don’t know how hard this is. You don’t know what I’m going through.” When I broach this topic at first, I’m always really careful to say this is not about, “Hey, look at the bright side, or just think about how grateful you are.” Because I don’t know about you, but when I’m in pain or I’m physically suffering, that approach does not work. In fact, it has the opposite effect. If anything, it just makes me angry but even so, there’s so much value in being able to separate out your physical suffering from your emotional suffering. And this has been something that has been so helpful in my own work.
I’ve done a lot of work around chronic jaw pain that I have, and certainly it’s been very helpful around sleepless nights that have come with being a parent. Getting clear on the distinction between these two things. It’s not a magic bullet. But it is a really powerful tether that can help you from slipping into despair. The way this was taught to me is to regard pain as a physical sensation that’s indicating an event happening within your body. And then suffering is everything that’s happening in your mind. The pain might be chronic tension in my jaw. That’s a pain that I deal with quite a bit. Suffering is feeling hopeless that it’s never going to get better. If we’re using the example of sleep, the sensation it can be that full body exhaustion when you’re unable to sleep, but the suffering is feeling anxious that tomorrow’s going to be a nightmare if you don’t get to bed soon. It’s not to say that insomnia or chronic pain or injury isn’t very uncomfortable.
It’s not denying any of that. It’s trying to acknowledge that often it’s the anxiety the hopelessness, the anger, the grief on top of that physical discomfort that makes things so unbearable. Again, this does not mean that you should slap a smile on your face or pretend that everything is great, but you can learn so many tools to start to turn down the volume and have less intensity around a lot of the emotional suffering.
The work you do here, and I do this work with so many people inside the membership, the work that you do with The Remedy archetype can be incredibly, incredibly powerful. And you know what? It has incredible benefits, even if you’re not currently using alcohol in this way, because of course we all deal with sleepless nights and pain in our body and some sort of emotional suffering around that pain.
Think about it, even if you’re able to reduce your emotional suffering by even 10 or 20%, that is huge. That can give you enough breathing room to be able to navigate your urges and not immediately reach for a drink. Learning to identify what you can control and what you can’t control when you’re in pain is so empowering, and it’s a skill that you need if you want to change the habit.
With The Remedy, I always talk about this as, viewing the drink as a bandaid that’s blocking the cure. Now, keep in mind that when I say the word cure, it’s probably not what you think because you may never get rid of sleepless nights. You may never again regain the mobility that you had. We certainly can’t stop aging. We’re not going to be able to eradicate all the pain from our life, but you can learn how to set boundaries with your body. You can learn how to manage stress. You can learn how to listen to your internal cues. You can learn how to release that anger, frustration, grief, or hopelessness that you have about some of these ailments or about your body, and you can discover new ways to cope and navigate your body’s ups and downs. Listen, when you start doing all of those skills, all of that is going to help you feel better. And really to me, the work of The Remedy is less about being healthy. It’s more about learning how to befriend your body without needing it to be perfect.
All right, everyone. This is the final episode on the Drink Archetypes. I’m going to be talking about them so much more in the coming weeks and months, but this is a great place to start, especially after you get your results from the quiz.
Go and listen to the episodes that respond to your primary and secondary archetype. It’s really going to help open up how you view the habit of drinking. And remember, if you haven’t taken the quiz, You can go to FindYourDrinkType.com and get your free results. Alright everybody, I’ll see you next week.