Jeremy Weisz 9:02
That’s crazy. And for people listening, you know, it’s always a journey. Right? So it’s not like it’s stopped then talk about the constant journey of of staying on track. So
Tim Westbrook 9:23
for me work in a 12 step program, the 12 step program, that’s my foundation. And you know, they a lot of people talk about, you know, doing the work, right. And so for me doing the work started with the 12 step program and doing the work of the 12 step program doesn’t mean just go into meetings, because I’ve heard people say that they Oh, I’ve gone to meetings. It’s like oh, did you work the steps did you get a sponsor? Like did you do the deal? And they’re like, No, does it doesn’t work. You can’t say it doesn’t work if you don’t actually do it and do doing it? Yeah. Working a 12 step program means you take number one, you take suggestions, I had to realize that my best thinking got me where I was. And if I wanted something different, if I wanted my life to look different, I had to take suggestions, suggestions from other people. So I found a sponsor that had what I wanted. And I did what he told me to do. I went to meetings one or two times a day, I did a gratitude list every single day, I called three people in the program, every single day, I worked my 12 steps, I got a, I got a service commitment, I got lots of service commitments, and I continued to be of service my first couple years. I mean, I was going to one or two meetings a day, and my whole life was surrounded about around recovery. And that was in around the 12th. And what I mean is the 12 step program, hanging out with people before the meeting, and then hanging out with people after the meeting, playing golf with people that were in the 12 step program, going to 12 Step related events, that was what I needed. So that was my foundation. But then after that, I continued, I continued because here’s the deal, like my drinking and using my behavior, my alcoholic behavior, which is the selfish, self centered, lying, cheating and stealing. And I’m not talking about robbing a bank, lying, cheating and stealing, I’m talking about just being dishonest, being a dishonest person, and doing things that I’m not proud of doing things that I don’t feel good about doing things that are not in not aligned with my values. The reason why people feel restless, irritable discontent, is because their behavior is not aligned with their values. And so because I feel the guilt and the shame, I don’t feel good, I want a soul, I want the solution, the solution is the drink or the drug. Everybody has a solution. And mine, my my solution was destructive. And there are a lot of people that have a solution. That is that has negative consequences. So the definition of addiction is to continue. Continue with a behavior or an action, despite negative consequences. And so that was and so for me the 12 step program, as I said, that’s where it started. But then there’s lots of other things. I started doing yoga, which yoga Mind, Body Spirit, the principles of yoga are aligned with the principles of AAA. And so, so there’s yoga, then I started doing CrossFit, and there’s that community, you know, the community like health, and fitness is kind of my, that’s my thing. That’s my jam. And so I’ve done Ironman a couple of times, that was amazing. Um, Trey, as I told you earlier, I’m training for rim to rim to rim, which is 50 miles and 10,000 feet of climbing, which is just that’s kind of, I guess, you can call it kind of like my passion project. It’s not a passion project. But it’s kind of like a passion project. Like, that’s what I’m focused on. And guess what, I’m focused on that, and, and therefore, all of the things that I do are going to support that activity. And I realized, being clean and sober meant that all of my decisions had to support that decision. It’s like, there are no decisions, because my My decision is to be clean and sober. Therefore, all of my decisions support that decision. And so it’s this, have you heard this story of, if it makes the boat go faster? Does it make the boat go faster? Okay, I’m not going to. I don’t even know how to tell that story. But basically, there’s like a crew team, and they wanted to win the National Championship or whatever it was that they wanted to win. And the question whether it’s like, Hey, should we go to this party tonight? Well, it makes the boat go faster. Should I drink a 12 pack of beer? Will it make the boat go faster? No. Therefore the decision is No. Should I go? I mean, whatever the decision is, does it make the boat go faster? And so those are so that’s the only question I need to ask is, Does this support my recovery? Does this support my health? Does this support my well being because today, it’s more it’s not just like, oh, I need to stay sober. And I think it’s okay for people at the very beginning. I just got to stay sober. I need to make it to 24 hours I need to make it to 30 days I need to make it to 60 days. I mean, I just got to stay sober. I just got to stay sober. I just, that’s not long term. That doesn’t work long term, long term. It has to be focused on living my best life. Doing things that I love doing things that give me that bring fulfillment. And I was talking to I don’t remember who I was talking with somebody else about this about exercise because I’m very fit and and he asked me man, how do you stay so fit and and it’s just I think about people that are they do the yo yo diets or they Do the they they make they have these goals to go to the gym every single day and get super fit. And then that’s not long term. Long term is like, the lifestyle. And what do I, what do I want? Why am I doing the things that I’m doing? I, I, I work out and I stay fit. It’s not like, Oh, I gotta go to the gym today. I mean, sometimes when I’m, if I’m, like training for rim to rim to rim, I’ve got a big hike this Sunday. And, like, I’m going to do it. There’s not really like that supports my goal. If I don’t do if I don’t take this the necessary steps to prepare myself for this big hike. It’s going to be miserable. I know. It is the same thing as doing Ironman. Like I had a coach, because I need a coach, I need somebody else to tell me what to do. And especially before I did Ironman for the first time, like it was like, that’s no joke. It’s, I mean, it’s it’s each one of those.
Jeremy Weisz 16:12
Each one of the portions of Ironman is no joke. You know, if you allow an Ironman, it’s like, a marathon. And then the swear that then the bike, you know, the
Tim Westbrook 16:25
Yeah, the marathons at the end. Right, exactly. It’s a 2.4 mile swim. And then 112 mile bike, I’ll tell you what, after 112 miles on the bike, I don’t care who you are, I mean, I just want to throw the bike. Like, I’m excited to go run a marathon. Like, like, I can’t wait to start running this marathon after being on the bike for under 12 miles. And then you and then you got to run a marathon at the end. So it’s pretty, it’s pretty gnarly. And and yeah, it’s just preparing for it. It’s not whether or not I’m going to make it. It’s just okay, like, am I going to be a little faster or a little slower? I already know I’m going to be able to do it because I put in the time and the effort and I trained for it.
Jeremy Weisz 17:07
Yeah, that’s incredible. You you really focus your energy on these goals and one of them. At what point did you decide I’m going to start Camelback recovery. So
Tim Westbrook 17:22
there so my a lot of things happen to me in so once I got sober. And this is the other thing too, just because someone gets sober a lot of times like I’m sober now my life should be great. It’s like man, you created records for like 20 years or 25 years or however long was so for me, okay, I got clean and sober. I started feeling better. I started thinking more clearly I started sleeping better. I started to get fit. But I still had a lot that I had to go through separation, divorce bankruptcy, my real estate license was revoked. I lost my business. I lost. You know, I bought a bunch of homes in Arizona. As I said in my story, I short sold so I lost all my homes. I lost all but one of them. So like there’s a lot of shit that happened. And the reason why I started CamelBack Recovery, there was a woman. So when I owned this, this real estate company, they were vacation rentals. And I rented out this vacation rental to a woman named Mina and her and a woman named Mina and Kristin. And they both and I found out that they turned my home into a sober living home. And I was like, really? And so they I didn’t know, I didn’t know. And first off, I found out they were in recovery. I was like, wow, okay, this is this is cool. Like I’m in recovery to gay, you know, and, and when you’re new when you’re newly sober, and you find out somebody else’s newly sober it’s like, oh, wow, yay. And in and that’s in there a lot of people in recovery. I mean, it’s like, once you get sober you realize just how many people are in recovery. So find out these, these two women are in recovery. Wow, okay, great. And then, and then I found out, they turned my home into sober living home for women. I was like, rarely Oh, okay. And that was about the same time when my real estate license got revoked. And I had to figure out what I was going to do next with my life. And so it’s like, okay, I’m passionate about my recovery. I’m passionate about helping other people. I need to figure out what I’m going to do next with my life. And I actually had another home that I needed to figure out what we were going to I need to figure out something to do with it, because I’m no longer doing vacation rentals. And so I decided to go back to school to get my Master’s in addiction counseling. I started up CamelBack Recovery. We were just sober living. And so that’s kind of how it got started. That was 2014
Jeremy Weisz 19:44
to talk about the continuum of care, and then we could talk about how Camelback Recovery fits into that because I think we were talking before we hit record. At least I wasn’t familiar Of all the different pieces of the continuum of care, and where you fit into that.
Tim Westbrook 20:07
Yes, of course. So the continuum of care is. So it’s like typically when someone is needs the most help, they need to go to detox, right? They need to be detoxing, need to medically detox. So there’s a so detox is like, the highest level of care. And then below that, you’ve got inpatient treatment, and then you have partial hospitalization. And then you have intensive outpatient treatment, and then you have sober living. And then you also have mixed in you have case management, you have recovery coaching, you have so those are kind of the the different levels of care. And so when we started in 2014, we provided sober living, and in my experience, and sober living is just as important if not more important than treatment, because this is the thing when someone goes to treatment. They they’re in a bubble, they’re protected. Like they don’t even have to make decisions really, like they get out of bed at the same time, breakfast is taken care of for them, they have group, then they have lunch, then they have another individual session, therapy session, and then they have dinner, and then they have yoga, and then they have a 12 step meeting, you know what I mean? Like so, and they don’t have their cell phone, they don’t work. They don’t, they’re not around all of the toxic relationships that they were around before going into treatment. So it’s pretty easy to stay clean and sober when someone’s in treatment. When someone’s in that bubble. The real growth happens when a person leaves inpatient treatment, or partial hospitalization. And so that’s where that’s where Sober Living comes, comes into play. And someone could be in sober living and also attending an outpatient treatment program. So they’re in therapy for, you know, like 15 hours a week, 12 to 15 hours a week, but then they’re also they’re also living at a sober living, they could also do an intensive outpatient treatment and live at home. Back, it’s really, again, someone drinks or uses for three years, five years, 10 years, 20 years, like that’s how they’re programmed to live life, right are in 95% of our thinking is subconscious. Only 5% of it is conscious. So the easiest thing to do, especially when someone’s triggered, if they go back to their old environment after inpatient treatment, they go straight back to their old environment, or even to an environment that doesn’t provide enough support and accountability and community.
Jeremy Weisz 22:54
It’s, it’s like it they’re
Tim Westbrook 22:58
setting themselves up for failure. More than 90% of people fail. They mean they relapse within a year after leaving treatment. The reason being are now most people relapse. And the reason most people relapse is because they have to learn how to live and and setting someone up for success means they go to a good high quality, Sober Living Light Camelback recovery, our programs based upon our five pillars, accountability, support, structure, community and purpose. So they’re in our sober living, they’re also going to outpatient treatment. And while in outpatient treatment, they’re getting the clinical work done, the trauma work, the EMDR, the, the, all of the other stuff, and then they live in a supportive environment. And we drug test a couple of times a week, we breathalyze randomly. We provide gym memberships, we provide all the food, the food’s good, high quality, organic whenever we can food and nutrition is such an important part of recovery. Most people before they get clean and sober. They’re eating a bunch of crap and a bunch of junk food. We there’s there’s curfew. We require five units of self care per week. So there’s just it’s just a whole people have to learn how to live life differently now. So CamelBack Recovery, we recently opened up an outpatient treatment center, which I told you about. And so someone can come into come into one of our into our program into our PHP program or IOP. So they can start at PHP, which is essentially inpatient treatment. They live in one of our sober living homes. They’re attending pH P a partial hospitalization, which is like inpatient treatment, and then they can step down to IOP while living in one of our sober living homes, and then they can step down to sober living, where they’re just living in the sober living home. They have a you know, they have a purpose. They have a job, they’re working, they’re going to school, they’re they’re volunteering, they’re doing something productive with their time. So that’s that’s necessary. But the thing about us having all of the different levels of continuum, or the all the different levels of care is that if someone’s in our IOP, or if they’re in our sober living, and they relapse, we can send them back to PHP. Now, before we were, we were providing clinical services, if someone relapsed, we would have to, we would refer them out to another treatment center, and
Jeremy Weisz 25:28
may have a different structure, it may have different values, it may have things it’s not related to sober living.
Tim Westbrook 25:34
No. So so that’s a no, the problem is that these people are very sick. So we’re trying to send them to a higher level of care. And they end up not even in not even go into the treatment center, they end up relapsing and going out on a bender for the next week, month, six months a year. And then they overdosed and they die. And when I say they overdose, and they die, I’m not even exaggerating. Like I’ve, I’ve seen that happen. So many times, I can’t even I can’t even tell you how sad it is to see people come into our home. And then they just they start getting a little sideways. And then they think that this recovery thing, I don’t need this, I’m good. Or let me just go out for a little bit. And let me let me test the waters again. And they overdose and they don’t I mean, like I’ve it’s not even exaggerate and exaggeration. Anybody that has any experience with treatment will tell you the same thing. People overdose and die all the time. It is so sad. And especially what happens when people they get a little bit of time under their belt. So they’re clean and sober for a little while they’re in our sober living, or they’re in someone else’s sober living, or they go back home. And then they decide to go back out. And they think that their tolerance is as high as it was when they first got clean and sober. Boom, they’re done. They’re done. Next thing, you know, they overdose and they’re dead. I mean, it’s it happens all the time. There was,
Jeremy Weisz 27:13
how long are people typically don’t there is a typical, but staying at Camelback recovery. So
Tim Westbrook 27:23
the sober living is typically. So sober living is typically three to six months. And I would say really like a year in recovery a year focused is a is a is a solid start, go into treatment for 30 To 4530 to 60 days, and then going back to just live in life on their own. It’s not enough time, like it’s not enough time. And so if someone, someone is under some sort of care, and supervision and has accountability, it’s like doctors, dentists and airline pilots, if they are, if they get in trouble for drug or alcohol related things, they’re monitored for five years, if they want to keep their license, the success rate of that population recovering from drug and alcohol use is at 5%. So that that just goes to show it’s the the longer someone is under care monitored, held accountable, the higher the likelihood it is that they’re going to stay sober for the rest of their life. And I think the statistics, these are the statistics, statistics that I heard, I don’t know where these statistics come from. But more, only 90% of people are going to relapse within the first year. If someone makes it to a year they have a 67% chance of making it to five years. If they make it to five years, they have an 85% chance of making it for life. So the longer someone stays clean and sober, the higher their chances are, because we’re we’re programmed to live life a certain way. 95% of our thoughts are subconscious. As I said earlier, 95% of our thoughts of my thoughts today are the same thoughts that I had yesterday. So I’m constantly thinking the same thing over and over and over again, for someone to change the way that they think to change the way that they respond to change the way that they live. Like it takes a lot of work and it takes a lot of time.
Jeremy Weisz 29:34
So let’s say someone comes in for the come the Camelback Recovery. They’re there for six months now. I know you have facilities in Arizona, do people come from all over the place? Or is it mostly local?
Tim Westbrook 29:49
They come from all over the place. They come from all over the place. I mean, we have a lot of people that come from Arizona and I would I would say our sober living is known as up around around the country. I mean, we’re, we’re known around around the country. I mean, we we have people from all from around the world that come and stay with us. A lot of people are from Arizona, but we have a lot. I mean, because doing a geographic is a good thing. For a lot, a lot of people, I mean temporarily, anyways, so if someone wants to start a new life, moving away from their, where they live that because those all the triggers all the toxic relationships, the way that they’ve been living their life for the last five, or 10 or 20 years, like all those people are where they live typically. So moving to a new location is good in the short term. And the reason why I say short term is because someone needs to do the work, and learn how to live life differently, develop, learn how to develop healthy relationships, learn how to, you know, just do make different decisions. So if a person does the work, and they start attracting different people into their life, then it’s good. So it’s just does that make sense? So it’s easier to do a geographic for in the short run, but if they want it to stick, they really have to learn how to live life differently. And eventually, they can I mean, and I would say, if someone can leave for at least three to six months, or maybe even a year, if they can leave where they’re from, for at least three to six months, that’s like that, that would be better go into treatment, where you live, is, I mean, sometimes it can be harder. I mean, it’s not impossible, but it’s, it’s good if someone can can leave. Yeah.
Jeremy Weisz 31:37
Let’s talk about two scenarios. Let’s talk about a great scenario, outcome and a not great scenario outcome. Let’s start with the good one. So, six months, someone’s doing great in the sober living facility during callback recovery. What happens next once they leave?
Tim Westbrook 31:56
Okay, so I actually have a specific story I could tell you about. Okay, so we had a client, isn’t it, I’ll just use his first name. His name’s Patrick. So Patrick went to inpatient treatment for 45 days. And So Patrick, he was an alcoholic. And I think he also had, he was also doing opiates, actually. His wife left him and his and took his kids and said, I’m done. You know, you gotta go to rehab. And he lost his job too. And this is like a professional with a good job. And so he educated, makes good money professional. So he goes inpatient treatment for 45 days after inpatient treatment, he comes to Camelback recovery lives in our sober living, does out. He does outpatient treatment, intensive outpatient treatment IOP for eight weeks. And then after that, what he did was he stayed on and he was a house manager for CamelBack Recovery. So that’s kind of like the next step. It’s like that’s an entry level job. And this is a professional like he’s not a housemate. You know what I mean? Like, like, but it was his recovery job. Having a recovery job for someone that’s trying to get back on their feet is the best thing going out there. Because he could have gone straight back out to getting a great job in and making great money and because that’s what he was used to. And I’ve seen that happen before to where someone goes out and tries to hit a home run and get the best job ever. Because I got to take care of my kids, I got to take care of my wife, I got like, I need to get back to work. And it’s just and then and then it ends in relapse and they’re dead. And I I’ve seen that happen to so this guy. He He’s a house manager. He’s with us for six months as a house manager. And then he starts in there and he starts interviewing for jobs. And he gets three job offers at, you know, at great companies. I think one was Intel. Well, I think he got two offers from Intel, one from SRP and one from from somewhere else. And he ended up I think he ended up taking the job for Intel. And, and today, it’s been I think it’s been a couple years. And he’s doing great. He has great relationship with his wife, I think they ended up they did end up getting separated. They did end up getting divorced. But he has a great relationship with his ex wife. He gets to take care of his kids, they co parent, he bought a new house. He’s like his life is moving forward. He’s back on track. And that’s like that’s, that’s a beautiful thing.
Jeremy Weisz 34:29
Let’s take the flip side. There was a child that came through.
Tim Westbrook 34:39
Yeah, so this was a kid that that that came through again, he goes to goes to inpatient treatment. He does outpatient treatment lives in the sober living, but he’s not really like he’s he’s a little bit younger and he’s really not ready to. You’re not really ready to throw in the towel, I guess out If he’s not, he’s really not ready to give up the drinking and the drugs. And I would guess more than anything, he still thinks that he should be running the show. He doesn’t want to follow rules. He doesn’t want to do what he’s told he never relapsed while he was in our sober living, but you could, you can see his behavior start to kind of, kind of go south. He ended up leaving a little bit early. And so this is a kid from from Scottsdale, parents made great money. They did really well. So financially, they own they own businesses they own so they were, you know, it was a good solid family on the outside anyways, and this kid, kinda he should have stuck with sober living. And he convinced his parents that he was ready to leave his parents let them live in his parents. They’re the ones that are footing the bill. So they paid for him to live somewhere else besides living at Camelback recovery. And within a few months, he, he overdosed and he died. And it’s so sad. His parents, they think they’re doing the right thing. I mean, parents, like don’t do anything for their kids. And a lot of times, it’s just it takes, it takes a long time. I can’t there’s so many other stories that I can think of there was another guy that was with us, he owned a restaurant. And, and he owned a restaurant in South Scottsdale. So restaurant tours successful. He’s been in business for a long, long time. He was living in our sober living for a while for a few months. And then he ended up leaving. And he just he was a workaholic. He’s a workaholic, and he worked in the restaurant industry. And he drank himself to death. I mean, it didn’t happen right away. But that’s, that’s kind of what what happens. This disease is cunning, baffling and powerful. It takes lives. And so the longer someone stays in treatment, the longer someone stays connected, the higher the likelihood is that they’re, they’re actually going to get better and, and it’s it’s all about focusing on focusing on living a better life. That’s been my experience.
Jeremy Weisz 37:22
Tim, I have one last question. But before I ask it, first of all, thank you, thank you for sharing your stories and your journey. It was to say it was rocky as an understatement. So I really am, you know, thankful that you got to get out of it. You You keep doing the work, and that, you know, what happened to you wasn’t a death sentence for you. Because, you know, really appreciate that and you sharing your story.
Tim Westbrook 37:58
Yeah, and I, I would definitely be dead. There’s no way that I would be alive. There’s no way I was crazy. I was a freaking disaster. I’m surprised that I lived as long as I lived. And I told you the story about the accident. I drank for 15 more years. So you know, just because an addict or an alcoholic has something that is so disastrous, disastrous, and catastrophic. And everybody else thinks, Oh, my God, he’s definitely going to stop or she’s definitely going to stop after this. Like I didn’t stop, I would say that. My mind the bottom that got me sober wasn’t even my lowest bottom.
Jeremy Weisz 38:42
It’s it shows the importance of platelet count back recovery, because even that incident of being curled up and, you know, being in a hospital for two weeks in an account, you know, that wasn’t enough. And if that’s not enough to stop someone, nothing is until you put an outside, you know, some support in there. So my last question, I want to encourage everyone go to CamelBackrecovery.com. To learn more, is just someone’s listening to this. They know someone who or maybe suspect someone a loved one a friend who they either know or suspect is struggling. What do you what should be the first thing that they do? How can they help?
Tim Westbrook 39:28
I the first thing I think they should do is get a hold of somebody that’s either works in treatment or is in recovery or somehow connected? I mean, I get messages and phone calls from people that I know that I knew from elementary school, from college from high school, family members, like I get calls from lots of people. So if you know somebody that’s either clean and sober, they’re in and they speak about Got it, especially like, I’m very public about my recovery and my sobriety, I help anybody. And either I’ll be able to help you, or I’ll be able to send you to the right place. And it doesn’t matter where you’re at, it doesn’t matter if you’re in another part of the country, if you’re in another part of the world, or if you’re in Arizona, or if you’re in California, doesn’t matter where you’re at, just reach out to me or reach out to somebody else that you know, that’s in recovery. And, and the other thing too, is that the, the treatment industry is like, not there. They’re not, they’re not all good players. So finding someone that is ethical and provides good high quality treatment is like it’s daunting to go out there and start making if I’m, if I’m somebody that is not familiar with, with treatment, or recovery, and I start picking up the phone or I start Googling, like there’s a bunch of people out there and you don’t know who’s providing good treatment. You don’t know who’s just after your insurance dollars. You don’t know who’s out there trying to scam you. So it’s like, it’s tricky. So I’d say call look, look us up Camelback Recovery, you can find me on Instagram, kick ass over life. I have a YouTube channel CamelBack Recovery if you want to watch some of my videos and become educated and learn a little bit more, if you’re looking for an interventionist that’s the other kind of part of the continuum is if someone needs needs help needs an intervention, then I can I can help you find an interventionist you can call CamelBack Recovery, our phone number 602-466-9880. If you need help, call us, send us a message go to our website. And we’ll either be able to help you or will be able to send you to to the appropriate person or level of care that provides the service that you’re looking for.
Jeremy Weisz 41:59
Tim, I want to be the first one to thank you everyone. Check out camelbackrecovery.com Check out more episodes of InspiredInsider and Rise25 And thanks everyone. Thanks Tim.
Tim Westbrook 42:10
Thanks so much Jeremy.