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Posted by on in Drug Addiction

Overcoming an addiction is more than just stopping the use of drugs and alcohol  . It means starting over completely – changing every aspect of one’s life to eradicate old, destructive behaviors and thought processes that lead to them and replacing these with more positive choices. 

It can be a long, lonely process and many find that what sabotages their progress is not a craving for drugs and alcohol but the deep desire to reconnect with their old life and all the people in it, even if it means putting their life in danger with a return to drug and alcohol use. 

Beating this loneliness can be the key to a successful recovery. Here are five tips to help you or your loved one in early recovery find the support they need to stay true to their goal of long-term sobriety:

1. Go to 12-step meetings. Alcoholics Anonymous (http://www.aa.org/),Narcotics Anonymous , and a host of other 12-step meetings provide an instant community of people who are not only understanding of what you’ve been through but also attempting to accomplish the same task. Though you may not connect personally with anyone immediately, it’s a quick fix to remind you that you are not alone in your journey. 

2. Meet with a therapist regularly. Regularly seeing someone who can help you sift through your feelings, isolate underlying issues, and hold you accountable in recovery can help you to feel grounded and focused on progress rather than emptiness.

3. Rebuild old relationships that were damaged by addiction. Not all relationships that were damaged by addiction will be able to be repaired in recovery – and not all of them should be. But relationships with positive people can be rebuilt to be a good influence in your new life in recovery. Patience is required, however, as it can take time to learn how to communicate effectively, get needs met, and rebuild trust.

4. Make new connections in recovery. Making new positive connections and friendships is one of the gifts of recovery. It’s important, however, to take it slow and get to know people before investing too heavily in a new friendship. You want to make sure that you are making a positive connection that will help you both continue moving forward toward your personal goals. NOTE: Early recovery is not the time to connect with new people romantically. Romantic relationships can take the focus off your progress in recovery and trigger a relapse if things go awry or the relationship ends.

5. Become your own best friend. “Alone” doesn’t have to mean “lonely” if you fill your life with positive people and work on building your own self-esteem and confidence in yourself and your abilities. When you’re by yourself, you can indulge in your hobbies, work toward goals in your education or your career, or take care of yourself by eating well and working out. When you prioritize your health and wellness first, you increase your ability to connect with others positively and move forward in recovery too.

Learn more about how you can overcome the obstacles that face addicts and alcoholics   in early recovery when you reach out to us at Futures at the number above today.

Learn more about extended case here: http://www.futuresofpalmbeach.com/drug-rehab/extended-care-treatment/

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Posted by on in Drug Addiction

I'm sure that many of you can relate to coincidences like when you learn about a new word, you find that you hear it more, but when in reality it's just something new that has come into your awareness, it was really there all along.  This is of course something that happens to me often, but has certainly been my experience since I have been writing this blog, as it is now always in my awareness to look for opportunities for what to discuss next and they just keep popping into my life!

Working in the addiction field, and the job I have in particular, keeps me very focused but also very isolated.  Working in addiction also creates a sort of bubble, being that my clients are all trying to get out of their active addiction, my co-workers are all in recovery, and the doctors are addictionologists.  I had been in California for four or five years and didn’t realize that I was protecting myself in a way, by not branching out of my comfort zone.  So it wasn’t until about two years ago, that I started to go out to new places and interact with new people that have never struggled with an addiction.  (People that experience temporary stress instead of chronic anxiety are still a wonder to me!)

The benefit, however, of the bubble realization was that all of that prep work that I had been doing (working with a sponsor, doing the steps, going to multiple types of therapy to figure out the core issues as to why I was using inhalants, then working on those core issues) was in preparation for returning to the real world and all its challenges and this time having a more positive impact, on myself and on those around me, and it was time to use them!  The tools I have learned (especially emotional regulation, coping skills, and trigger identification) and the resources I have developed have been crucial in my relapse prevention, because life sure does throw me some curveballs and when I did come out of hiding, I found that some of my wreckage from my past was still there waiting for me.  I am definitely grateful that I was given the opportunity to have a second chance, to get to be the same person, but a better version.  By doing the footwork, it allows me to look at the same situations but have different reactions and therefore different outcomes than I would have in the past.

I feel that in order to be effective in communicating with people who are also struggling and/or looking for solutions or education, I need to write about things that truly affect me emotionally, because if what I'm writing doesn't induce some sort of feelings for me, how could it in someone else?  So full disclosure in the hopes that someone can relate and hopefully allowing me to be of service.

The reason that the ability to have different reactions that produce different and better outcomes is on my mind is due to some events that occurred in my week.  I felt discouraged this week for two reasons, and I feel like they have happened while I have volunteered to write this blog for a reason.  I am a person that falls victim to a certain type of mental trap, where your brain immediately jumps into negative thinking or disaster mode when you hear certain things that are not ideal.  In the treatment facilities I work with, we refer to it as addict brain.

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Tagged in: 10th tradition 12 step 12 step recovery AA abstinence accurate self-appraisal action program action steps addict addiction addiction help addiction memoir addiction recovery Addiction Specialist addictive behavior addicts affected affirmations Alcoholics Anonymous answers anxiety anxiety and recovery ask for help Asking for help attitude of gratitude awareness balance being a loving mirror being a loving person being of service Big Book Caring for those who still suffer co-addiction co-occurring disorder compassion courage dealing with a using loved one depression discomfort drug abuse drug addiction emotional management emotional maturity emotional regulation emotional sobriety emotions faith family recovery fear first step goal setting goals gratitude gratitude journey Guest Blogger guilt healing HELPING OTHERS higher self inadequacy inner satisfaction intervention inventory letting go Life Challenges life on life's terms literature memoir mental health mindfulness mindfulness and recovery Motivation My Story openness positive energy program of recovery recovery recovery talk relapse prevention Resilience right action right intention self care Self Love self-compassion self-confidence self-esteem self-help self-honesty serenity shame sobriety sponsor stepwork struggle substance abuse suffering suffering addicts Support surrender tenth tradition thinking thinking errors Trying to save a Life turn it over twelve step recovery twelve steps Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions twelve steps of aa twelve traditions twelve traditions of aa why i used drugs
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Posted by on in Alcoholism

"Yet we can't well content ourselves with the view that all these recovery failures were entirely the fault of the newcomers themselves. Perhaps a great many didn't receive the kind and amount of sponsorship they so sorely needed. We didn't communicate when we might have done so. So we AA's failed them. Perhaps more often than we think, we still make no contact at depth with those suffering the dilemma of no faith."

Bill Wilson, AA Grapevine, April 1961 "The Dilemma of No Faith"

Cross posted at Thump.Increase

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Posted by on in Drug Addiction

This posting contains adult language

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Posted by on in Drug Addiction

The Afflicted & Affected offers podcasts and video webcasts for professionals and individuals in recovery from alcohol, substance abuse and other addictive disorders. The shows highlight the most current and effective treatment methods for addictive illnesses as well as the latest tools available for building a successful long-term recovery

 

 

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