PODCASTS

Utah motivational speaker trying to spread substance abuse awareness after addiction took everything

Jun 4, 2020, 9:14 AM | Updated: 9:20 am
substance abuse awareness...
Jared Miller (owner of Miller Motivation Group) joined the Project Recovery podcast to recount his story of substance abuse and the work he is doing now as a motivational speaker.
(owner of Miller Motivation Group)

SALT LAKE CITY — A Utah motivational speaker is trying to spread substance abuse awareness after losing everything and becoming homeless due to addiction.

When Jared was younger, he was always athletic. Eventually, he earned a scholarship to play football for Snow College in Ephraim, UT. By the age of 22, he was the first person in my family to graduate with a four-year degree, and by the age of 24, he was a high school football coach in Arizona.

“I had a great childhood ⁠— an all American childhood,” Jared Miller described. “I got a great start in life.”

Until tragedy struck.

Turn for the worst

“Life kind of threw me a curveball,” Jared explained. Within the span of three years, Jared would experience the loss of both his father and brother, as well as a divorce from his wife. The whole time he was abusing pain medications.

Like so many other athletes like Jared, surgeries had taken their toll on his body. He began to retreat into what would help numb the pain.

“I found myself thinking, if pain meds are great for physical pain, they’d be great for emotional pain,” he said.

Jared found that if he would take a couple of pain meds, he’d be able to go to sleep much easier. But unfortunately for Jared, this created a dangerous cycle that would ultimately see his kids being taken away from him due to his drug use. 

Jared’s Rock Bottom

“At that point, I stopped caring. I stopped going to work. I stopped paying bills and I moved in with my mom,” Jared described.

The respite of living with his mother quickly became a disaster as soon as Jared’s addiction to pills turned into an addiction to heroin. His mother quickly found out and kicked him out. Jared’s drug abuse had not only taken everything he loved away from him but it had left him homeless and craving more.

“I ended up in the Salt Lake City Rio Grande district — homeless,” he said. “I felt guilty and I felt like I’d let my dad down, my brother down, my wife down,”

On July 3rd, 2014 the pain and guilt became unbearable. Jared had decided to end all of the pain and tragedy he had experienced. He was going to try and take his own life.

“When I was ready to go, there was no goodbye letters,” he explained. “I was ready to go join my dad and my brother. I was done.”

The pain of reality

Jared ended up overdosing in a public bathroom. Local police were forced to administer Narcan to bring Jared back. He regained consciousness but woke up in an angered state after he realized he hadn’t passed away. Jared began to try and physically assault anyone he could. He was ultimately detained and immediately sent to a detox center where he would experience withdrawals for his substance abuse. 

His near-death experience would ultimately be the catalyst for Jared to turn his life around.

Spreading substance abuse awareness

Jared would spend nine months in a men’s recovery center to get clean and to reacclimate to society.

Heis now sober and has spent years trying to make amends to those he pushed away, for himself and for his kids.

He now works as an Experiential Director in St. George, UT helping at-risk youth. Jared also started the Miller Motivation Group, an educational group of empowerment speakers. His goal is now to be there for others who need the same help he did.

And while his attention is on anyone who is struggling, he’s hoping to make amends to those who he lost due to his substance abuse.

“I do what I do today because … if one day my kids see me at a school speaking, if one day they hear me on a news broadcast, they see me doing an event, hopefully to them, they’ll know I’ve made mistakes but I’ve also learned from them. I’m extremely driven to learn from those mistakes” Jared said. “It’s redemption”

Listen to the podcast to learn more about substance abuse awareness

For more information on addiction or if you or someone you know is struggling, you can find more information on Facebook, KSL TV, or from Use Only as Directed. To hear more from Casey Scott and Dr. Matt Woolley, you can listen below or subscribe to the ‘Project Recovery’ podcast on Apple Podcasts or wherever you get major podcasts.

Today’s Top Stories

Podcasts

death Benvenuto The Letter Yvette Rodier Zach Snarr...
Amy Donaldson

“The Letter” – A Utah family weighs the death penalty

How the definition of justice changed for the family and friends who lost 18-year-old Zachary Snarr to a murderer.
4 days ago
The Letter Jorge Benvenuto Zachary Snarr Utah...
Amy Donaldson

“The Letter” – What suspected killer Jorge Benvenuto said about the girl who survived

Detectives said 19-year-old Jorge Benvenuto was trying to build the courage to kill himself before he came upon two kids at Little Dell Reservoir.
12 days ago
Pinocchio (voiced by Benjamin Evan Ainsworth) in Disney's live-action PINOCCHIO, exclusively on Dis...
KellieAnn Halvorsen

FAN EFFECT REVIEW: Disney’s latest version of ‘Pinocchio’ is a nostalgic dose of CGI magic

"Pinocchio" gives a modern touch to the animated classic with CGI-infused magic, a handful of updated plot points, and a diversity of players.
17 days ago
Midterm Elections...
Jeff Caplan

100 Days until midterm elections

The midterm elections are only 100 days away! Many have been predicting a red wave this fall, but what do the polls show, and is it too soon to tell?
2 months ago
Buttigieg infrastructure...
Heather Kelly

Secretary Buttigieg discusses how the infrastructure bill will help Utah

Buttigieg said that the infrastructure bill allots $12 million for Utah in fiscal 2022 and up to $65 million over the next five years.
2 months ago
Host Maria Shilaos visits Michael and Cheryl Ackley's desert garden. The garden various things to s...
Devin Oldroyd

Taking a look at a backyard turned desert garden

Host Maria Shilaos visits Michael and Cheryl Ackley's desert garden. The garden various things to see, such as desert plants, a western town and a revamped train caboose.
2 months ago

Sponsored Articles

a worker with a drill in an orange helmet installs a door in the house...
Price's Guaranteed Doors

Home improvement tip: Increase the value of your home by weatherproofing doors

Make sure your home is comfortable before the winter! Seasonal maintenance keeps your home up to date. Read our tips on weatherproofing doors.
Curb Appeal...
Price's Guaranteed Doors

How to have the best of both worlds for your house | Home security and curb appeal

Protect your home and improve its curb appeal with the latest security solutions like beautiful garage doors and increased security systems.
A paper reading IRS, internal revenue service is pictured...
Jordan Wilcox

The best strategies for dealing with IRS tax harassment | You have options!

Learn how to deal with IRS tax harassment. This guide will teach you how to stop IRS phone calls and letters, and how to handle an IRS audit.
spend a day at Bear Lake...
Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

You’ll love spending the day at Bear Lake | How to spend a day at Bear Lake

Bear Lake is a place that needs to be experienced. Spend a day at Bear Lake.
Prescription opioids can be disposed of during National Prescription Take Back Day...
Know Your Script

Prescription opioid misuse | How to protect your family from the opioid epidemic

Studies have shown that prescription opioid misuse has increased since COVID-19. So what do you need to know about these opioids?
national heart month...
Intermountain Healthcare

National Heart Month: 5 Lifestyle Changes to Make Today to Keep You Heart Healthy

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women. One person dies every 36 seconds in the United States from cardiovascular disease
Utah motivational speaker trying to spread substance abuse awareness after addiction took everything