Real Recovery Alumni Spotlight
For this week’s Real Recovery Alumni Spotlight we sat down with Richard C, a New Life House alumni that has made a home for himself and started a business right here in the South Bay, with almost 10 years sober. We spent some time talking with him about life after the recovery house and what has changed since he first got sober.
New Life House: Was New Life House the first time you tried to get sober?
Richard: No, I actually got high in an outpatient before coming to New Life. It was my first honest attempt at getting sober though.
NLH: Was there one event that led to you coming into the house?
Richard: I got thrown out of my parents house. I was drinking morning, day and night and one night while I was doing donuts in my car I got pulled over by a police officer. Rather than arresting me, he talked with me and told me that I needed to get sober and suggested that I go into a program. That was the first time my eyes were really opened to it.
NLH: When you were in the house, what were your biggest struggles?
Richard: My biggest struggle for the first six months was that I wanted to get high. After buying into a sober lifestyle though, my biggest struggle in the house was getting out of myself, thinking of others and not being selfish.
NLH: What was the feeling you got when you graduated the recovery house?
Richard: Graduating was the coolest feeling I’ve ever had in my life. It was like taking all of the Christmases together and putting them into one.
NLH: What are some hobbies and activities that you like doing now?
Richard: Playing music, surfing and traveling are some of my biggest hobbies. I recently went to Fiji, Hawaii and North Carolina and I am going to Mexico in the next couple of months.
NLH: What is your focus for the next year?
Richard: My focus for the next year is building my company to where in a year from now I see myself investing in commercial and other types of real estate.
NLH: What was the biggest lesson you learned while going through the house?
Richard: To never sell myself short and never draw lines in the sand. I took the experience of always striving for more while in the recovery house to my company, to my marriage and into my personal life.
NLH: What is your involvement like in AA today?
Richard: I go to at least 2 meetings a week, I have a commitment at the men’s stag that I go to, I meet with my sponsor every single week and I do my best to be of service every day.
NLH: How do you bring the principles of AA to your business?
Richard: Honesty is number one. My company has access to people’s bank information as well as other forms of sensitive information. Without honesty in all of the areas that I have to oversee, my company would not be where it is at today. The second most important thing is integrity. If one of my orders gets messed up or we make a mistake with it, I stand by my order and will go out of pocket to overnight it again. The third is never settling and always striving to be better.
NLH: How do you bring what you learned in the house and AA to your marriage?
Richard: Honesty is still number one. Without it, I wouldn’t be able to have a meaningful relationship. Being selfless is very important as well. The more that I think of my wife, the happier that I feel both of us are. I also still have to work on my defects of character because they still come out all the time, even with the people that you love.
Thanks for talking with us Richard!