His Instagram account is full of hilariously relatable memes, sagely quotes and shoutouts to people celebrating milestones in sobriety. Austin Cooper’s mission? To inspire you to take recovery one day at a time — just like he is.

Ever met someone who’s positively radiant? Someone whose zest for life is contagious and who brightens any room just by being in it? One such soul is Austin Cooper, the founder of Sober Evolution, an online recovery community dedicated to helping people heal from drug and alcohol addiction. After a tumultuous alcohol battle in his early 20s, he’s now dedicated to building a new way of life, and to showing everyone he meets how awesome sobriety is.

On his Instagram, Austin shares photo quotes with phrases like “Started from the bottle, now we’re here,” an anthem akin to his own recovery journey. Like most living success stories, Austin wasn’t born the shining example of hope and health that he is today. His early 20s were drenched in alcohol as he spent his college days chasing one party after the next, trying different drugs and drowning in mixed drinks. His alcohol addiction didn’t end after college, either. Austin recounts hitting rock bottom several years later: “I was sitting at my desk, hungover and smelling like liquor. How I still had a job was beyond me. I was at the point in my life’s downward spiral to where I didn’t really care, although deep down inside I really did.”

Austin recently visited The Recovery Village to share his story of addiction, the intervention that changed his life and how inspiring others fuels his own recovery:

In his most recent Sober Evolution blog post, Spontaneous Construction, Austin remembers the surprise intervention that turned his life around. “For some reason or another, I knew exactly what this was…an intervention. I still can’t believe it to this day, but instead of feeling the anger that I had felt so many different times when my family would sit me down and try and talk to me about my alcohol and drug problems, I felt relief. As cliche as ‘the door of opportunity’ sounds, that was exactly what it was.”

Ever since April 10, 2013, his celebrated date of sobriety, Austin has steadily built a new, sober life from the ground up. But it wasn’t until January 2016, after a few years free from the influence, that the idea for Sober Evolution came to him. “Alcohol and drugs weren’t really much of a thought in my mind anymore. But I asked myself why, and I looked at everything I had been doing since getting sober. The first and most important part of my process was to become willing to do whatever it takes and not just my best,” he recounts.

With this mindset, Austin started doing all the things recommended to him by those living the life he wanted: reading personal development books (see one of his favorites here), hosting late-night (think 3 a.m.) meetings with those in recovery and forming new habits.

Amidst this immense personal growth, Sober Evolution was born. Austin started it as an Instagram page to remind himself of all the wisdom he was gaining through staying sober. Little did he know, recognition of the page would soon spread like wildfire to help tens of thousands of people across the globe stay strong in recovery.

If I can do it, anyone can do it…I woke up one day and realized that I didn’t want to just give up on life. I decided that I would put in the work and effort to go for my dreams and goals. I wanted to set myself on the most badass, lifelong journey imaginable!
-Austin Cooper, Founder of Sober Evolution

Today, Sober Evolution is an entire online recovery community with a website, Instagram, and Facebook group all dedicated to supporting those in recovery as they shed drugs and alcohol to transition back into society. By providing daily motivation, Austin hopes to encourage his 26,000 followers to stay strong and take life one day at a time. “Sometimes it just takes seeing a positive quote to change the outcome of a day or even in someone’s life,” Austin says.

Through Sober Evolution and his testimony, Austin is spreading the message of hope and healing for everyone who needs to hear it. So if you ever think you’re alone in sobriety, think again. There’s always people rooting for your recovery, wherever you are in the world. And one of them is Austin.

Need more than motivation? The Recovery Village can help. We provide a full continuum of comprehensive treatment for people struggling with drug and alcohol addiction, and we want to see you succeed on your journey back to health. Call our intake coordinators today to take the first step.

a woman in a black cardigan smiles at the camera.
By – Camille Renzoni
Cami Renzoni is a creative writer and editor for The Recovery Village. As an advocate for behavioral health, Cami is certified in mental health first aid and encourages people who face substance use disorders to ask for the help they deserve. Read more
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