The opening pages of Mike Lindell’s new book describe a dark and lonely man in the grip of addiction, long before he became the jovial millionaire CEO of one of America’s most visible companies.
“I felt a sudden sadness,” he writes, describing a moment of clarity that lead him down the path of sobriety. “This was where my addictions and bad decisions had led me. It was ridiculous, when you thought about it.”
“All my decades of scheming and groveling to get that white powder, only to lose everything to it in the end. All that time thinking I was so smart I would beat the odds. But now the game was over. The house had won. I was going to die right here on this deserted street, a small item in the news: ‘American tourist goes missing in Mexico.'”
What are the odds?
Lindell’s memoir What Are the Odds? From Crack Addict to CEO shares new details about his past and describes his remarkable journey through addiction to recovery and prosperity.
In a recent interview with The Minnesota Sun Lindell said he views addiction as “an opportunity,” an opportunity to find God, resolve past traumas, and build resilience.
The real problem, he says, is a lack of hope, faith, and meaning – and addiction is an opportunity to deal with these problems.
Lindell frequently says that recovering addicts make some of the best workers and he employs a number of them at his MyPillow headquarters. If you can overcome addiction, then you can overcome almost anything else, Lindell believes.
In his own recovery, faith was – and is – the key ingredient. His prayer life flourished when he hit rock bottom. His darkest moments revealed God’s grace at work in his life. Many of his prayers came at his “lowest points,” he said.
“When does it become a miracle in your own life? For me, all through my own life things would happen and I’d go, ‘This is impossible,’” said Lindell. “God put me in a position where I was sitting in the White House next to the president and my friends are seeing me on TV – what is this crack addict doing sitting next to the president of the United States in the White House? I mean, Jesus is real. I think everybody can look through their own life and see, ‘Hey, this is impossible if it wasn’t God.’”
As mentioned before, his book begins with one of these “impossible” moments, or as he prefers to describe it, a “miraculous escape.” Lindell had gotten mixed up with the wrong crowd in Mexico and found himself in the middle of a dispute between two rival drug dealers.
By the grace of God, he escaped and just celebrated 11 years of sobriety in January. Lindell wants to share his story of hope with other addicts. That’s why the proceeds of his memoir will be used to launch the Lindell Recovery Network, an “unprecedented” tool that will pair addicts with “hope matches,” which he described as mentors who will guide newly-sober addicts through recovery.
Lindell Recovery Network
Lindell said he printed three million copies of his book and is self-publishing in order to donate the proceeds to his Lindell Recovery Network.
“I didn’t want any middlemen taking such huge cuts that they do for books nowadays,” he said in an interview with The Minnesota Sun.
Although he can’t share many details yet, Lindell said his recovery network will serve all kinds of addicts, not just drug addicts.
“That’s going to launch I’m hoping within two months. I can’t tell you a lot about what’s inside for the help, but I can tell you this: there’s going to be thousands of hope matches. You put in your age and your addiction, no matter what kind of addiction it is. Not just drug addiction. There’s sex, porn, gambling, alcohol. You put in your age and your addiction and you’re going to see all these people that have made it through and they’re basically going to be hope matches. You’re going to want to know how they made it through,” he said.
Lindell has some disagreements with the current treatment model for addiction and believes that addicts “who have made it through to the other side” make the most qualified counselors.
“Like 30 some states have regulations where if you want to be a counselor for addiction, you have to go to college for x-amount of years – you have to do this, and do that. It just depends on the state. I don’t want those people. I had those people in the 80’s and 90’s when I went to treatment centers. It’s a joke. You got to go to where the right help is, and that help is addicts who have made it through to the other side. And how did they get there? I want to hear from them. With hope, you want to get to the right help, you’re going to go to where the right help is,” Lindell explained.
Lindell has built a massive platform with MyPillow and has appeared on TV more than 2.6 million times, but he indicated that some changes may be coming. He recently appointed his son as the next chief operating officer of the company and said he is now able to focus on the “things that I want to do.”
“I have the same nucleus from MyPillow, these amazing, trusted employees, this amazing workforce of 1,600 where they all have my back and where I can actually do the things that I want to do – the evangelism, the network,” Lindell said. “I’ve been gone now for probably 19 days out of 21. The company can run without me being there on a daily basis.”
As far as the evangelism goes, Lindell said he’d like to see “the biggest revival ever in history” and decried the lack of faith in America’s public schools.
“We have a whole generation that didn’t have God for a foundation because our country, our schools went away from God. That foundation, those roots, need to be brought back,” he said.
“Too many children went without seeds being planted. Because childhood is so important for the rest of our lives, it really becomes a big problem that we’re in now, with people dying of opioid addiction, people not feeling good enough, people going to little cry rooms because they don’t like something a politician did. It’s crazy, but it’s sad,” he continued. “For me, I pray for those people everyday that somehow we get the word out to them that there is a foundation out there.”
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