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The Unruffled Podcast

The Unruffled Podcast is a weekly show hosted by Sondra Primeaux and Tammi Salas that explores all topics relating to creativity in recovery. When an addiction is removed, there is a void that is left and this show digs into all of the ways to fill that void. The Unruffled is passionate about creating and making and how those pursuits fuel recovery, specifically from alcohol. Come with them as they unruffle the old stories and write new ones, to not just exist but thrive.

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Episode 12 - Carly Benson Interview

Today, Tammi and Sondra interview Carly Benson. Carly is a recovered addict turned faithful believer in miracles, she is the creator of the site Miracles Are Brewing, sobriety coach and yoga instructor, co-creator of The Bloom Club, a subscription-based recovery club and has recently launched Om Vibes Only, a conscious alcohol-free gathering integrating yoga, deep house music and mindfulness. In a nutshell, Carly is a sober, creative power-house and her enthusiasm is contagious. This week Carly shares three items from her Unruffled Toolbox with our listeners: (1) Yoga; (2) Prayer; and (3) Essential oils.

1hr 18mins

26 Jun 2017

Rank #1

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Episode 88 - Before The Relapse

This week on the podcast, Tammi and Sondra catch up about a topic that isn’t often explored until after it’s happened: Relapse, specifically life’s events that can lead to a possible relapse. They talk about the meaning of the word and how it can be broadened to encompass emotional relapse and lack of spiritual maintenance, and how those factors can be just the things that could lead a person to a lapse in alcohol abstinence. They both include very personal accounts and real-time solutions that helped them get through crisis before any real destruction of progress, and their hope is that they convey these lessons in a way that can be helpful to anyone listening to this conversation. This week Sondra and Tammi share three items from their Unruffled Toolboxes: Sondra: (1) Meetings + meet-ups; (2) Service opportunities; and (3) Breathwork + cold showers. Tammi: (1) Social media break; (2) ‘Back to basics’ mentality; and (3) Daily log journaling.

1hr 31mins

10 Dec 2018

Rank #2

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Episode 44 - Laura McKowen

Tammi and Sondra are so excited to have Laura McKowen on the pod this week. Laura is a Mama, writer, teacher and co-host of the very popular Home podcast with Holly Whitaker and co-host of a new podcast, Spiritual-ish, with Meadow DeVor. They talk about granting yourself permission to change, to say No to things so you can say a big fat Yes to others, and then the biggest Yeses that lead to the giant leaps. They also talk about when to take breaks from things, knowing yourself well enough to know the things you really want and then choosing those things, purposefully and intently. If you already know Laura and her work, they hope you will hear something that may give you a little more insight on a beautiful soul who brings so much light to the recovery space. To keep up with Laura and her goings-on, please visit her at http://www.lauramckowen.com/. This week Laura shares three items from her Unruffled Toolbox: (1) Her cat, Piper; (2) Sleep; and (3) The energy of creating something new.

1hr 28mins

5 Feb 2018

Rank #3

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Episode 81 - Holly Whitaker

On this week’s podcast, Tammi and Sondra are so excited to bring you a conversation with Holly Whitaker. If you don’t already know Holly, she in the founder and CEO of Tempest, Inc. (formerly Hip Sobriety, Inc.) and the newly launched media site, The Temper, and is currently one of the smartest voices in modern recovery. They talk about how she took her sobriety school from just a handful of students to the progressive company it is now, they talk about the decline of the beloved Home Podcast and how she personally channeled former accounting skills into her abounding and prolific creative output today. Holly is a visionary and her future looks bright. You can still find Holly’s blog at http://www.hipsobriety.com/ and her newly launched baby at  https://www.jointempest.com/ and https://www.thetemper.com/ or find Holly on Instagram @holly and @thetemper. This week Holly shares three items from her Unruffled Toolbox: (1) Lavender essential oil; (2) Breathing; and (3) Tea bags.

1hr 45mins

22 Oct 2018

Rank #4

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Episode 13 - Sandy Ford Interview

This week, Tammi and Sondra talk to Sandy Ford. Sandy is an attorney living in Chicago and the author of www.sobermormon.com. They take a deep dive into Mormonism and recovery, and how Sandy has reconciled the two. She shares the path to finding her seat in the rooms of AA and how she finally came to believe that she deserved a sober life that wasn’t miserable. Sandy also shares how she came see her honest, tell-all writing as a path to helping others. This week Sandy shares three items from her Unruffled Toolbox: (1) Exercise; (2) Meditation: Headspace App + Dan Harris’s 10% Happier Podcast; and (3) Fiction.

1hr 4mins

3 Jul 2017

Rank #5

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Episode 110 - The Toolbox

This week’s podcast is all about tools! A question was posted by a listener in The Unruffled Podcast secret Facebook group sourcing ideas for FREE sober treats that provided instant gratification but didn’t indulge consumer culture. We all know that a mani/pedi or a massage feels great, but there are so many treats, tools and indulgences that are available to all. Tammi and Sondra list out all of the listener suggestions and add their own personal riffs. Get a pen and some paper, you’re going to want to take notes. Be sure to listen to this one all the way to the end, as the ladies make an announcement about the next Unruffled meetup that you won’t want to miss!

1hr 19mins

13 May 2019

Rank #6

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Episode 144 - Laura Tully

Continuing with the interview series of creative, sober women from the Unruffled community, Tammi and Sondra are happy to welcome Laura Tully. Laura is an adjunct professor and Deputy Director of a nonprofit teen center based in Arizona who is in recovery from a self-proclaimed “pupu platter” of addictions. In sobriety, she’s learned to incorporate art into her therapy sessions and credits her growth to this creative self-reflection. To learn more about Laura, you can follow her on Instagram @teetotaltul.This week, Laura shares three items from her Unruffled Toolbox: (1) Her cat (2) Library card; and (3) Childhood pictures.

1hr 25mins

6 Jan 2020

Rank #7

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Episode 119 - Guest Co-host, Laura McKowen

Continuing with the summer guest co-host series, Tammi gets to spend some time talking to Laura McKowen. You may know Laura from her previous interview (Ep. 44) or as the former co-host of the wildly popular HOME podcast. Her newest podcast creation is Spiritual-ish which she co-hosts with Meadow DeVor. They talk about creating online courses and charging what you’re worth, how Laura tackled writing her forthcoming book, We Are the Luckiest (releasing 12/31/19), as well as getting into the nitty gritty about recent panic attacks and so much more. Over the years, Laura has become a trusted friend and really walks the walk when it comes to her sobriety and creativity. To learn more about Laura and her work, you can find her at https://www.lauramckowen.com/ or connect with her on Instagram @lauramckowen.This week Laura shares three items from her Unruffled Toolbox with our listeners: (1) Box Breathing; (2) Insight Timer App; and (3) Sweat.

1hr 23mins

15 Jul 2019

Rank #8

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Episode 95 - Boundaries

This week on the podcast, Tammi and Sondra address a topic they felt reluctant to talk about as they didn’t feel they had much to say until they started rolling: Boundaries. It was after they both looked at what their lives looked like before they got sober and could clearly see instances where they lacked boundaries that they could see how they are intentional and decisive in their lives now. They define boundaries, discuss examples of their power and usefulness and share how they are each working to strengthen boundaries in their lives.This week Sondra and Tammi share three items from their Unruffled Toolboxes: Sondra: (1) Freethinkers’ meeting; (2) Church; and (3) Attending to micro-goals.Tammi: (1) Boundaries + Protection by Pixie Lighthorse; (2) Beta-blockers; and (3) Studio purge.

1hr 13mins

28 Jan 2019

Rank #9

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Episode 107 - The Discomfort Zone

Today, Tammi and Sondra riff on a Robcast, An Anatomy of Restlessness (Episode 231) or in their terms, the discomfort zone. They talk about the many uncomfortable places we find ourselves in, like overwhelm, change, boredom and impulsivity. They talk about what this looked like when they were still drinking and the work they’ve had to do in recovery to reframe these situations as an invitation rather than something to merely tolerate. This is an episode packed with solutions, so you may want to bring a pen!This week Sondra and Tammi share three items from their Unruffled Toolboxes: Sondra: (1) Getting in the flow; (2) Unplugging; and (3) Laughter. Tammi: (1) Collaging my feelings; (2) Daily theme song; and (3) Building my creative wheelhouse.

1hr 34mins

22 Apr 2019

Rank #10

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Episode 20 - Chris Aguirre

Today, Tammi and Sondra catch up with Chris Aguirre. Chris is the co-host of the Since Right Now podcast, curates the recovery site Klēn&Sōber and this year will celebrate his twentieth year of sobriety. They talk about what it’s like to work in the online recovery space while finding time to address mental health, his own creative projects, and what it’s like to be a stay-at-home, sober Dad. Chris is candid and funny and we really appreciate the platform he has built and the creative recovery community he has helped to foster.This week Chris shares three items from his Unruffled Toolbox: (1) Exercise; (2) Meditation; and (3) Making creatively fulfilling work.

1hr 34mins

21 Aug 2017

Rank #11

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Episode 56 - Janelle Hanchett

Today, Tammi and Sondra are ecstatic to share a conversation with Janelle Hanchett. Janelle is a Mom of four, a writer and the founder of the very popular website, Renegade Mothering. Janelle has a story in which becoming a Mom was not enough to save her from her addictions and it is raw, tender and harrowing. This story has a happy ending, though, and one being that she wrote a beautiful memoir, I’m Just Happy To Be Here: A Memoir of Renegade Mothering. They take some time to weave through her story, one that involves religion, depression and writing as redemption, all set in a West coast landscape. Janelle is warm, effusive and so funny, you will definitely want to devour her book after this conversation. They are just so happy she’s here.This week Janelle shares three items from her Unruffled Toolbox: (1) I’m honest with myself; (2) Working with other alcoholics (service); and (3) Staying part of the world + practicing gratitude.

1hr 59mins

30 Apr 2018

Rank #12

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Episode 102 - Kristi Coulter

This week on the podcast, Tammi and Sondra are excited to welcome Kristi Coulter. Kristi is a Seattle-based writer, dog-lover, running enthusiast, unofficial expert on red lipstick and is the author of the 2018 essay collection, Nothing Good Can Come From This. They talk about getting sober in the tech world, patriarchal influences on women’s alcohol use and of course, her Medium essay “Enjoli” that nudged Kristi’s writing career forward. This conversation is packed with gems and if you want more from Kristi, visit http://www.kristicoulter.com/ for links to her excellent blog and to purchase her book.This week Kristi shares three items from her Unruffled Toolbox: (1) Writing on her MAC laptop; (2) Bullet journaling; and (3) Exercise.

1hr 44mins

18 Mar 2019

Rank #13

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Episode 31 - Not This

Over a year ago, Elizabeth Gilbert published a short essay on her Facebook page called Not This. It really resonated with so many, one that Sondra went back to many times since it was originally posted, that she and Tammi decided to do an episode on the many Not This moments in their own lives. As these things go, they both had similar ones around religion and divorce and of course, the biggest they both share are the moments that led to their sobriety. This is an emotional episode and they hope that it inspires you to reflect on your own Not This moments. Perhaps you have some Not This moments that are yet to happen, but that you will see, although scary in the moment, they are almost always opportunities for change and growth.The ladies share their top three tools in their Unruffled Toolbox for the week:Sondra: (1) Staying with discomfort; (2) Dietary changes; (3) Knowing what I DO like and want in my life. Tammi: (1) Dietary shifts; (2) My former book club; and (3) G.O.D. choosing Grace Over Drama.

1hr 29mins

6 Nov 2017

Rank #14

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Episode 28 - Mid-Life Solution

Today, the ladies dive deep into what it’s like to get sober in your forties. Tammi and Sondra both describe pivotal moments that made them reframe this whole getting older thing, changed their stories and have been evolving ever since. Whether you are approaching your 40s, in it and thinking life has passed you by, wondering if sobriety will really be a catalyst to help you achieve your creative goals, or if you are right there with them, they want you to know that it’s not a crisis, it is the #midlifesolution (let’s hashtag the hell out of this)! They really hope there are many takeaways in this episode that you’ll latch on to…”It’s not a moment, it’s a movement.”---Hamiliton The ladies share their top three tools in their Unruffled Toolbox for the week:Sondra: (1) Live Theatre; (2) Girlfriend Time; and (3) New Creative Project #sheslikearainbow.Tammi: (1) Vitamin supplements; (2) Monthly facials/massages; and (3) Color in my life.

1hr 32mins

16 Oct 2017

Rank #15

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Episode 62 - Amy Newman

In this week’s episode, Tammi and Sondra were happy to talk to the radiant Amy Newman. Amy is a health and wellness advocate, where she makes her love of plants as medicine accessible to all over on her platform, Whole Life With Amy. She has also adopted the alcohol-free lifestyle, and the ladies talk about how she came to that decision as a powerful choice that went hand-in-hand with the taking back of her health. There is so much to Amy’s fascinating story, from Mormonism to embroidery and cupcakes, you will leave this conversation lit up. To see all of Amy’s offerings, you can go to http://wholelifewithamy.com/ or to catch her wonderfully informative and instructional videos, follow her on Instagram @wholelifewithamy.

1hr 56mins

11 Jun 2018

Rank #16

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Episode 63 - Natalie Fairbrook

In this episode, Tammi and Sondra are excited to have Natalie Fairbrook on the podcast, helping them kick off a slightly new Summer format called the Sober Sister Summer Series. Natalie is a friend (often referred to on the pod, *that* Natalie), sober Mama, yoga teacher and recovery coach in training and from party-girl to passionate teetotaler, her story is sure to resonate. This series is all about the beautiful life anyone can create in recovery, and Natalie is a radiant example of that. You can learn more about Natalie and her offerings at www.nataliefairbrook.com or follow her in Instagram @nataliefairbrook.

1hr 29mins

18 Jun 2018

Rank #17

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Episode 57 - Sarah Andrews

This week on the podcast, Tammi and Sondra were happy to chat with Sarah Andrews. Sarah is a woman who wears many hats, including Mom, social-impact marketer, philanthropic advisor and yoga instructor. They talk a lot about gray-area drinking and how it is okay to let go of something that is not serving you, even before it becomes a problem. Sarah is also someone who has suffered from anxiety and she shares many tools she uses to resolve that anxiety piece that so many in recovery experience. Sarah lives in Austin (the same city that Sondra resides), so there was much discussion of meetups, workshops and real-life connection and community building that so many of us crave. You can learn more about Sarah and her offerings at https://www.sapanastudios.com/. This week Sarah shares three items from her Unruffled Toolbox: (1) Yoga + meditation; (2) Reading; and (3) Music.

1hr 39mins

7 May 2018

Rank #18

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Episode 136 - Jill Jung

This week on the podcast, Tammi and Sondra welcome Jill Jung. Jill is an Atlanta-based sober woman working in the health and wellness space who believes small, daily actions can lead up to a long and beautiful life. They talk about the internal shift combined with the effectiveness of focusing on wins when trying to achieve sobriety. Jill’s warm encouragement is her superpower in meeting people where they are and she makes recovery look so good. To learn more about Jill and her offerings, you can find her on Instagram @jilljung or on her website, http://www.honesthealthhabits.com/, where you’ll find healthy tips, recipes and more. This week, Jill shares three items from her Unruffled Toolbox: (1) Journaling; (2) Walking; and (3) Daily Quote Inspiration from  Out of the Wreck I Rise: A Literary Companion to Recovery by Neil Steinberg + Sarah BaderStillness is the Key by Ryan HolidayYour Daily Unruffled: 365 Days of Reflections and Prompts For Your Creativity and Recovery

1hr 19mins

11 Nov 2019

Rank #19

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Episode 72 - Lara Frazier

With a few more episodes to go in their Sober Sister Summer Series, Tammi and Sondra are excited to share a conversation with their friend, Lara Frazier. Lara is a writer, speaker and recovery advocate with a strong voice in the recovery community. She has a very powerful story that’s she’s told on a couple of favorite podcasts, so if you want to hear Lara’s complete journey to sobriety, you can catch that on the Home podcast, Ep. 70. In this episode, the ladies wanted to focus on all of the important work Lara is up to now, including writing and specifically her latest essay on leaving a Twelve Step program and how she is doing two years after that decision. It can often be a polarizing topic that can come loaded with controversy, but they take their time weighing in on why the program works for some and not for others, as well as ideas for those for whom it does not resonate. You can read more of Lara’s work at https://larafrazier.com/ or see what she’s up to on the daily on Instagram @sillylara. This week Lara shares three items from her Unruffled Toolbox: (1) Macklemore; (2) Elena Brower’s: Ritual of Recovery; and (3) Social media.

1hr 23mins

20 Aug 2018

Rank #20