Manage episode 377227698 series 1221160
On this 200th episode of the Connected Leadership Podcast, and as we celebrate its third year, Andy Lopata welcomes celebrated guest Janey Lee Grace. Janey is an Amazon No. 1 best-selling author and speaker, and she was co-presenter on the UK’s biggest radio show, BBC Radio 2’s Steve Wright in the Afternoon, for 24 years. Formerly, she was a backing singer with Wham!, Kim Wilde and Boy George, and had their own number 8 chart hit as Cola Boy with 7 Ways to Love.
Janey has written five books on holistic living, including the number one Amazon best seller ‘Imperfectly Natural Woman’, and her latest book ‘Happy Healthy Sober’: Ditch the booze and take control of your life, which encourages everyone to look again at their relationship with alcohol. Janey has now dedicated her life to addressing "the alcoholic elephant in the room," advocating for an alcohol-free lifestyle. She recognises alcohol as a common factor in many social connections and explores the challenges of building relationships without the 'glue' of drinks.
A major prompt for her came when she realised how her lifestyle of drinking roughly a bottle of wine a night sat quite at odds with her long-established career as a healthier-living advocate. Janey, who now hosts the popular Alcohol Free Life podcast, was struck by how readily accepted and indeed normalised the central place of alcohol had become within society.
Her mission now is to highlight that every industry, not just entertainment, has a significant problem with heavy drinking. It's this prevalence and normalisation of alcohol in our society that Janey seeks to challenge by advocating for equal acceptance of the choice to not consume alcohol.
Many professionals find alcohol to be a uniting component in establishing connections. Andy and Janey discuss how people can build relationships without depending on the 'glue' represented by alcohol. Siding with inclusivity and equal opportunities for all, Andy extends this conversation to those incompatible with traditional alcohol-based socialising. Janey emphasises that organisations have a pressing responsibility to eradicate the assumption that everyone drinks and combat the societal pressure to drink. She also proposes an alternative: Keep the ritual, change the ingredients,' keeping the culture intact while replacing unhealthy habits with healthier ones.
The episode addresses the role of connection and community in aiding those trying to limit or stop their alcohol consumption. Janey underscores the immeasurable support she received from others in the same situation or those who've successfully pulled themselves out of it.
This podcast sheds light on the shift organisations need to start making towards healthier, more inclusive, and more sustainable ways of connecting and conducting business. Whether you're engaged in social drinking or what Janey calls "grey area drinking," this episode is a valuable listen. It’s an exploration of our relationship with alcohol and how it interacts with our efforts to connect and build relationships.
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