10
Sep 2017
It Comes Down To Your Choices

Geoff Kane, MD, MPH Addiction Medicine Update “It all comes down to your choices,” said a man in his fifties as he completed treatment following a brief return to drinking lots of alcohol. In the company of supportive peers and an empathic treatment team, this man had immersed himself for three weeks in mindfulness practices structured by Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). He also maintained connections with his sponsor and Alcoholics Anonymous. The man recounted how an offer of alcohol—made amid physical, interpersonal, and financial stressors—precipitated his most recent drinking episode. Similar situations had instigated previous binges. In the future, he plans to minimize exposure to stressors and drinking opportunities. Read more

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29
Aug 2017
Staying Sober: 9 Sobriety Tips

Staying Sober: 9 Sobriety Tips for continued sobriety

Staying sober can be difficult. Our lives often need to change in many ways, and it’s a scary process. From meditation teachers and therapists to psychiatrists and sober living directors, we asked nine professionals for their tips on staying sober. Addiction is a powerful medical, psychological and social disorder but most of all it’s a spiritual disorder. As such, staying sober requires not only a support network but also a diverse and consistent daily practice for lifestyle management.

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06
Jul 2017
What is Emotional Sobriety?

Emotional sobriety is a state of well-being that the recovering addict can attain beyond physical sobriety. For an alcoholic or drug addict, abstinence is only the first milestone. When the addict is able to consistently abstain from using substances, the second challenge is learning how to avoid relapse by learning how to manage emotions, feelings, and reactions. If one achieves physical sobriety, yet never makes an attempt to work on managing their emotions, relapse is likely to happen.  In active addiction, the alcoholic or addict used substances as a defense mechanism to mask, hide, avoid, and ignore feelings instead of learning how to cope with painful realities. Emotional sobriety deals Read more

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25
May 2017
How to Improve Concentration and Focus in Your Life

I’ve sometimes wondered – and others have asked – if I have a form of ADD or ADHD. I have a very hard time sitting still, and not a moment goes by in the day when I’m not doing something, playing with something, reading something, or fiddling with something. I’m not a smoker, but I can see why the oral fixation and the need to have something in your hands can be so hard to deal with. I have a hard time staying focused on anything, so I had to actually find ways how to improve concentration in order for me to be an effective writer, teacher, runner, and martial Read more

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23
Feb 2017
Living a Sober Life: 15 Healthy Steps

Living a sober life is about more than just quitting drinking or using. It’s about cultivating a healthy lifestyle and healthier coping mechanisms. You’ll be so emotionally, mentally and physically at peace that the desire to drink or use will no exist. Here are 15 ways you can do so.   1. Meditate for 20 minutes every day. Studies have shown this can prevent relapse. Researchers at the University of Washington studied 286 people who had successfully completed a substance abuse treatment program, and randomly assigned them to one of three groups: mindfulness meditation, a 12-step program, and a traditional relapse-prevention program. They found a treatment program that incorporates mindfulness meditation Read more

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22
Feb 2017
Guidance – A Daily Reflection

. . . this means a belief in a Creator who is all power, justice, and love; a God who intends for me a purpose, a meaning, and a destiny to grow, however . . . haltingly, toward His own likeness and image. — AS BILL SEES IT, p. 51 As I began to understand my own powerlessness and my dependence on God, as I understand Him, I began to see that there was a life which, if I could have it, I would have chosen for myself from the beginning. It is through the continuing work of the Steps and the life in the Fellowship that I’ve learned to Read more

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20
Feb 2017
Spiritual Recovery After Active Drug & Alcohol Addiction

Spirituality is an essential part of the addicts life, and it is often neglected in active addiction. During active addiction, the addict uses substances to fill up the emptiness felt in the soul. The program of recovery helps the addict discover why they are abusing substances and replace addiction with healthy, productive ways to fill up the spirit. Spirituality is not necessarily about any particular religion – it can be about believing in something bigger than you or it can be about personal well-being and personal development. However you think about spirituality, it is an important part of your recovery. SUGGESTIONS to heal spiritually: If you attended a particular church or believed in a particular Read more

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17
Feb 2017
Healing the Mind in Recovery

Your mind is just as important as your body, and it is be severely damaged by drug and alcohol addiction. Recovering addicts often have low depression, self-esteem, guilt, shame, and anxiety. They are also prone to cravings to return to their old habits. In active addiction, the addict uses substances to cope with life problems, emotions and other issues. In recovery, the addict needs to learn to use other coping skills to deal with life. There are a lot of things the addict can do to help heal the mind after an addiction. A few solutions to work on these issues: Self-esteem – You can improve your self-esteem by changing negative thoughts about yourself. When Read more

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16
Feb 2017
Healing the Body in Recovery

Healing the Physical Body After Active Drug and Alcohol Addiction Alcohol and drug addiction is extremely harsh and toxic on the body, mind and spirit. It is important to know that recovery does not happen over night. Arresting the disease and habitual addiction is only the first phase of recovery. A wonderful beginning, but there is much recovery ahead so remember to be patient and loving to yourself. This is the time for the addicted person to find new ways to heal in body, mind and spirit from all the pain, anxiety, and toxicity of addiction. New healthy permanent behaviors must be formed. Through working a 12-step program with your sponsor, mentor or therapist, the addicted Read more

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31
Jan 2017
Progress Not Perfection in Recovery From Alcohol Addiction

In meetings I often hear people say “progress not perfection.” This was a foreign concept to me. I had always thought that if I was just good enough and did all the right things, then I would be right with God. I have come to understand that as long as I am heading in the right direction, God makes up for all my shortcomings. What Does “Progress Not Perfection” Mean? When we go to alcohol and drug recovery meetings, we are sure to hear the phrase “progress not perfection”. “Progress not perfection” means “practice makes perfect”, most of us have all heard that phrase. It’s a little saying that reminds us how to Read more

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