Sam Phillips: Helping addicts on their sobriety journey

One of our gems ☺️

Part of our Spread Appiness Partnership Program, we help bold souls with their mission!

Sam Phillips is a phenomenal Suffolk-based father of two, with a mission to help others in sobriety. Using his own addiction story, Sam’s purpose is to help addicts and their loved ones to turn things around, and we’re currently working on Sam’s “Dare to Talk” app, to facilitate that purpose. Here’s Sam, with his story:

“My name is Sam Phillips and I am one of many people who has suffered with anxiety and depression. Before my 21st birthday I was out with one of my best friends and he went home and took his life. I beat myself up for years with the “what ifs” and I even blamed myself for so long because I thought, “Why didn’t I go after him?” It left me with a lot of trauma. I was angry and confused for a long time, and then I had my own mental health struggles and my own suicidal thoughts.

I found alcohol and cocaine and thought I’d discovered the magic cure that took away all my anxieties, fears and pains. But it didn’t and eventually it made everything ten times worse. My life was a vicious circle and I was spinning out of control. I was at rock bottom.

But rock bottom is a great foundation to build upon and though it took time, I’ve got myself out of the dark. I’d like to share with you something that has changed my life in the hope it will inspire someone else who needs it; cold-water therapy.

Cold-water therapy has been the major tool to get me back on track. In 2021, I set myself a 30-day cold shower challenge and realised afterwards that – both mentally and physically – its benefits are incredible. So I upped the ante and in March 2022, I set myself the challenge of going into the North Sea near Felixstowe Pier, every day for a year, calling the challenge ‘Dare to Dip’.

I completed the year-long challenge on 15th March 2023 and what a journey it was! When I started, I had no idea it would inspire so many others. On day one, I dipped alone. On day two, someone joined me. On day three, more people joined. It grew and grew. By the end of the 365 dips, hundreds of people had gotten involved in the challenge, helping raise hundreds of pounds for Anxiety UK and awareness for mental health.

I got an award for outstanding contribution in my community and I was a Pride of Britain finalist, which still hasn’t sunk in.

I know it’s made my daughters proud, which is what I set out to do! My girls are my world! They’ve taken the blue out of the skies and put it back in my eyes and I am forever grateful.

Pretending I was okay, seemed easier than explaining why I was not for so long. But the truth is, when I got real honest with myself, then my loved ones, I felt the weight of the world come off my shoulders. Sharing how I was feeling and admitting I’d been self-medicating, put me on the path to recovery. Everything just fell into place since I took those first steps. Sometimes when you are in a dark place you think you have been buried, but you have just been planted. Now is your time to grow.

Since this journey began, I like to set myself goals and challenges. Last year I went up to Scotland with some friends. We stayed at Corrour Station House. It’s a beautiful place where they filmed the hit movie, Trainspotting. We did cold water dips in the loch, we also hiked with a man named Ken, otherwise known as Hermit of Treig, who built his own cabin and has lived by himself for years.

When I got back from Scotland, I realised one mountain wasn’t gonna be enough. I got in touch with the charity I am ambassador for called, MANUP? and in 2024 myself and some close friends did the Three Peak Challenge.

The challenge is to climb the three tallest peaks in the UK, Ben Nevis in Scotland, Snowdon in Wales and Scafell Pike in England, all within 24 hrs.

Recovery really is one day at a time. When you are climbing a mountain if all you keep focusing on is the summit, the climb becomes so much more difficult and feels like you will never get there. But if you just concentrate on putting one foot in front of the other, before you know it you are at the top. Treat your life like that. Just like a mountain. Briefly look back and admire the view of how far you’ve come, but don’t look too far forward. Concentrate on the ground in front of you. Before you know it you will be on top of the world.”


What a gem! You can see why we want to support Sam, so watch like a hawk for the Dare to Talk app launch on our social media!

If you’d like to follow Sam, here are some links for you:



If you’d like to find out more about our Spread Appiness Partnership Program, reach out – we’d love to talk to you.