Finding Sober Friends with Kate Johnson

Kate Johnson sober curious podcast radical friendship ruby warrington

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My guest today is the spiritual teacher and author Kate Johnson. Kate’s new book is called Radical Friendship, and I knew I wanted to have her on the podcast as soon as I read it.

I don’t know about all of you, but closing out 2021 I have been feeling the impact of 18 months of social distancing. The past few months, I’ve found myself questioning who my real friends are; whether I’ve been a good enough friend to people; and what kinds of friendships I want to invest in going forward.

This process has reminded me a lot of how it can feel navigating your new social landscape after you quit drinking. One of the biggest questions I hear people asking when they get Sober Curious is: am I going to lose all my friends? And, well, Kate also celebrated 10 years of sobriety this year – and so she is perfectly placed to speak to this.

We also talk about why friendship is so important, why these relationships are often devalued compared to family and romantic ties, and how we can all be better friends to one another. In the episode we discuss:

-The value and importance of friendship – and why these relationships are often not valued the same as family and romantic partners

-Why strong friendships are a vital part of affecting social change

-Reevaluating her friendships, and relearning how to make new friends, after she quit drinking

-A Buddhist approach to relationships and the notion of “spiritual friendships”

-How her meditation and yoga practice have helped access states of calm in sobriety

-How removing alcohol helped her address underlying mental health issues

-Why sobriety helps you get real with yourself – so you can be more real with others

-Working with our “persistent visitors” (anxiety, repetitive thoughts and fears etc.) rather than trying to numb them out

-Kate’s definition of “freedom” and how we can begin to liberate ourselves and each other from suffering

-Seeing friendship as a source of joy and turning towards this in times of suffering

-Why friendship is an activity – and how we can be proactive about centering friendship in our lives

Kate Johnson is a spiritual teacher and author of Radical Friendship. Learn more about her work HERE and follow her on Instagram @hellokatejohnson.

Big thanks to Grüvi for partnering on this episode. Order at Getgruvi.com and use the code “Sobercurious10” to get 10% off your first online order.