Your Brain and Addiction: A Very Basic Explanation – By Robert Weiss LCSW, CSAT-S

Addiction is not a moral failing. Rather, it’s a neurochemical response, habituated and modified over time by repetitive use of an addictive substance or behavior. Put very simply, the human brain reacts to certain substances and activities in ways that create the sensation of pleasure. Later, we remember the pleasure that we experienced, and we attempt to recreate that feeling by repeating whatever it is that we did the last time. If we do this often enough, we can become addicted. More technically, a small portion of the brain, the nucleus accumbens, which is commonly referred to as “the rewards center” or “the pleasure center,” is automatically activated in response to life-affirming stimuli like eating, being sexual, socializing, and the like. These behaviors are “rewarded” in this way because they ensure survival of the individual and/or the species. (If we don’t eat, we die; if we don’t have sex, we… Continue reading

Spiritual Awakening – By Mark Goodson

  See more of Marks work at     Spiritual Awakening I had an estranged discovery re-surge in me; it brimmed out from a distant border, like some cosmic debris, not born in or made for this world. Suddenly, each step became a dance; songs were sung in single words. My thoughts, thrown askance, forced me to look again at every certainty. I saw light descend through cloudy tiers, and tall grasses shimmer like the sea. The breezes blew an old secret, sweet and cool. Ashamed that I grew content with grounded feet, I flew a mile if I marched a foot. I felt once more imagination afloat. Continue reading

Stop Overthinking & Color – It’s Like Yoga On A Page

Are you like everyone else, needing to de-stress? Do you struggle with negative self-talk, or the need to be perfect, or maybe you’re looking for a new way to fill time and space in your life—preferably a creative one? For some time, therapists, some say even Carl Jung, have been prescribing coloring as one of their healing tools. And with every book, big box, and arts-and-crafts store offering endless bins of coloring books, a new release or simple joy is at your beck and call. Even better, there’s a new one designed especially for people in recovery that not only features beautiful images but soothing words and affirmations inspired by the Twelve Steps. Inkspirations for Recovery (HCI Books) has arrived. Recovery icon Rokelle Lerner, best known for Daily Affirmations for Adult Children of Alcoholics, the author on the book said, “The effect of coloring on the brain is amazing for… Continue reading

Drinking: A Love Story – SEX – By Jackie S.

In this week’s chapter of Drinking: A Love Story, Catherine Knapp tackles the subject that everyone deals with and few want to discuss –  the connection between alcohol and sex.  Specifically, she discusses how drinking allows people the ability to let down their shields, to be more approaching and approachable. She talks about anonymous sexual encounters, friends with benefits, affairs and long term relationships and how alcohol affects them all. Not only affects them, but allows the participant to dance around their issues rather than facing them, like the purple elephant in the middle of the room – seen by all, but acknowledged by no one. This is just the kind of topic that is difficult to discuss, even now at six plus years sober. It is hard to admit spending a lifetime looking for affection in all the wrong ways and not ever learning how to create real sober… Continue reading

Dopeless Hope Fiend: A Recovering Addict’s Manifesto – By Ryan Sansome

You never had a problem with buying weed from me in junior high. You seemed to appreciate my proclivity for procuring high quality acid in high school. But when I started smoking meth during my senior year, you called me “a worthless tweeker.” When I missed the SATs because I partied too hard the night before the test, you pointed out how I failed more times than most have tried. When I sunk into a deep depression because my friends were walking out of my life, you said it was because I wasn’t “ever going to amount to anything.” It still hurts that you wrote me off because you thought I’d never get clean. I internalized your beliefs about me. I could never shoot, snort, or smoke enough dope to silence the memories of being shunned for having a disease. You looked down upon me from your socially acceptable, stable… Continue reading