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ADDICTIONLAND QUESTION:  If you could say something to your younger self with the wisdom you have today, what would it be?

Time passes no matter what you do with it. Whatever thing you want to do that will take two years or ten years to accomplish, don’t give up the dream because you feel like there is no time to spare or you will miss out on living life.. Committing to goals that require years shouldn’t be looked upon as “giving up years” or sacrificing time. There is time. Three years, five years, or ten years in the scope of the big picture of a lifetime is not much time at all. 

Heartbreak, pain, suffering and existential despair - however poetic to a young heart - are not more real, intellectually satisfying, or valuable than joy, laughter, love, and happiness. 

Changing your mind, your position on things, even your philosophy of life is not a betrayal. It is personal evolution.  Change does not invalidate what came before it.

There is no audience. We are all stars of our own movie.  You matter deeply only to the people close to your heart. Treat them well. Value them. Let them know how you feel about them. No one knows how long any of us will be here.

The only thing that is real is what we give of ourselves to one another. That is what will be remembered when we are gone. Be generous.

Life won’t begin when you get “there.” There is no “there”.  Find joy and meaning in every day.

Live as if this life is all you will ever have.

This is my last question as the monthly guest on Addictionland. Cate, thank you for inviting me to be part of this website. We will stay in touch. Anyone who has followed this who would like to contact me, I can be reached at

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Patty Powers is a sober coach and writer. She was featured on the A&E mini series Relapse and can be found in the "expert" section of She writes on Addiction and Fear for the Becoming Fearless section of the Huffington Post.

Patty balances her time between coaching private clients, several book projects, volunteer work and speaking engagements. With Dan Griffin, she is creating a four part public discussion forum on Sex and Recovery which will take place as a town hall meeting on this summer.

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