Recovery Revolution (Ten Historic Milestones) – William L White

Critics have claimed that recovery advocacy, recovery management, recovery-oriented systems of care, and related ideas and initiatives are a “flavor of the month” fad and that the so-called “recovery revolution” is nothing more than new words for what the addictions field has been doing for decades. Such shallow criticism ignores fundamental changes that are unfolding that will profoundly influence the future of addiction recovery—and the future of addiction treatment as a social institution.  I recently posted an outline detailing these changes in ten critical areas: 1) International growth and diversification of secular, spiritual, and religious recovery mutual aid organizations, 2) Exponential growth of virtual recovery communities and online recovery support resources, 3) Birth and maturation of a new recovery advocacy movement, 4) Emergence of an ecumenical (beyond identification with a particular mutual aid society or treatment institution) culture of recovery, 5) Rise of new recovery support institutions, 6) New recovery support roles/services as… Continue reading

Less Pushing More Allowing – Nicola O’Hanlon

I’d like us to think about that concept for a moment and consider what it means. We so often that we much push for what we want, work harder and faster, put all our effort into out goals until we have nothing left to give. But is that really the best way to achieve what we want? Let’s do a short visualization to help us connect with what Less Pushing and More Allowing means to you. It may be different for each person. Sit comfortably in your chair. Feel your feet flat on the floor, back against the chair, shoulders relaxed. Close your eyes if it feels comfortable for you. Take a deep breath in through your nose until your lungs are filled to capacity, hold…….and let go out through your mouth. Do this breathing exercise three times. Now I want you to become very aware of yourself, and when I… Continue reading

The Tangled Labyrinth of a Chaotic Childhood – Kyczy Hawk

I have not felt as if I had any connection with my ancestors; but it turns out that I do. Not in the “descended from royalty” kind, or the “long line of heroes” type, but the “inherited a poor resilience structure” kind. I do have a history, and it is painful. After several years in recovery I had to look at my life before liquor, my childhood before cocaine, my minority before marijuana – you get the drift. There were behaviors and characteristics that had set the stage for my using, drinking, rampant sexuality, dependence on independence. I had to untangle my old solution set, and find a new structure for my character and inner self, just as I had found recovery for my disease of addiction. This had to start in my past. With a family that moved often between cultures but had no center in itself, this wonderful… Continue reading

Days in The Life of an Adult Child – Enough – By Sherry Hawn

As a young woman I never saw myself as an addict or a broken person. I smugly believed that since I hadn’t been arrested, hospitalized, medicated or forced to undergo EST, and I didn’t take alcohol or drugs, that I had narrowly escaped what seemed to grip my entire family of origin in one way or another. Over the years various family therapists inquired whether I was afraid of being found mentally ill and, of course, I shrugged these misguided questions off instantly. Considering that I worked, went to school, lived on my own, and was seemingly successful by worldly standards, I felt superior, and dare I say, blessed even though I had paralyzing fear and insecurity hidden in my soul. Yes, weight was always a matter of concern, but I wasn’t obese. I was able to camouflage the flesh, I thought, and periodically attempted dieting. Unlike weight, several other… Continue reading

7 Things I Wish I’d Known When I Was Battling Depression – By Andrea Wachter, LMFT

I spent many years in and out of depression, and while I felt very much alone at the time, I know now that I was not. Millions of people battle the dark depths of depression every day. Like many others, I kept most of my painful thoughts and feelings to myself. When I finally got desperate enough to reach out for professional help, it took a long time for me to actually believe and integrate the guidance that I was given. Here are some key truths I have come to believe. If you are struggling with depression, I hope you will too. 1. Don’t believe everything you think. We all have our share of losses and challenges in life. But the main cause of depression is not usually our life circumstances. It is our thinking. Unfortunately, when we are depressed, we tend to believe our thoughts. And the mind of a… Continue reading