How Life Gets Better When You’re Sober – By Rob Tropp

If you are in early recovery, you may be struggling to find your way as a sober person. You may be wondering what your life will be like without drugs and alcohol. You may feel some apprehension and awkwardness. While early recovery is not without its share of obstacles, you will begin to realize how much better your life will be clean and sober. So how is your life better sober? You Look Better An obvious benefit of sobriety is that you look better. Once the toxins leave your body, your body will return to normal. The blemishes you may have will clear up, and the dark circles under your eyes will become minimized. You will start to look and feel younger, and you will become happier and gain more confidence in yourself. Better Relationships Drug addiction is marked by manipulation and lies, and many of your relationships with those… Continue reading

Yogic Tools for Recovery: A Guide to Working the 12 Steps – A Review by Erika Duffy

Many of our human brains excel at separating, dissecting, labeling, categorizing and organizing concepts in an attempt to make them more understandable, yet terribly complicated. This author has, in her genius, taken incredibly complex, timeless wisdom and historically successful methodologies for healing and made them simple(not easy), comprehensible and accessible. Over the years I have wrestled, like many people, to regulate my personal fluctuations between my attachments to pleasure and my aversion to pain settling on a “healthier addiction” to collecting books or knowledge. In constant pursuit to quell my endless thirst for the most up to date, accurate resources for my own personal growth and to assist my offerings to students and residents I work with countless books lining multiple shelves, desks, tables and even the floor alongside my bed. For the past twelve years I have been a facilitator of yoga and meditation in schools, camps, studios and… Continue reading

Days in The Life of An Adult Child – Mistakes

I was working in a new situation and was asked to sort out and manage a large backlog of paperwork. It was a stack at least two feet high; a mountain of dusty paper reflecting all kinds of transactions and data in jargon I could only guess at. Although the task wasn’t as challenging as puzzle-solving, or as creative as re-engineering, I welcomed it. The environment was a tidy, modern office with a cheerful employee. The work required focus and concentration. I missed that kind of nimble mental aerobics and I dove in with gusto. It brought back a similar experience when I was no more than a tot when my mother brought me along to do some grocery shopping. In those days the local groceries were smallish with dull-grey walls of shelves, cans and jars with colorful labels and no flank of gleaming, scanning, beeping cashiering stations. The store… Continue reading

Did I Just Write a Song?: Expressive Arts and My Recovery Journey – Dr. Jamie Marich

During my first attempt at recovery, I learned to play the guitar. At the time, I worked for a Catholic Parish and aid organization in post-war Bosnia-Hercegovina. There was a kind Irish priest (and former rock n’ roller) also in residence who knew that I liked to sing. However, the only instrument I played, the violin, didn’t lend itself well to accompaniment. So he very patiently taught me the art of making chords and strumming. I found that when I was bored in those early days of figuring out what to do with myself, practicing the chords and the necessary movements to move between them more fluidly kept me busy. Then one day, the chord progression I was working on provided me a back drop to create a tune. Led by that tune, I started singing the angst of my heart and calling out to my Higher Power, desperate for… Continue reading

Days in the Life of an Adult Child – Wisdom

Wisdom is commonly defined as having experience, knowledge, and sound judgment. Based on that dictionary definition, it’s attained slowly across time, by living and learning, and not instantly from a jagged bolt of lightning from above, like in children’s cartoons. It’s certainly not the same thing as cognition or intelligence. And it’s hard to quantify or measure, except for subjective comparison of before-and-after spiritual selfies. In the serenity prayer we ask God for three things: acceptance of the things we cannot change, and courage to change what we can. The last and, in my view, most critical component, is the wisdom to distinguish between the two. I’ve struggled with this simple yet powerful triumvirate for decades, usually unsure when acceptance should prevail over courage. As a recovering ACA, I also focus on three areas that closely correspond to the prayer: eliminating denial by fully accepting the reality of how it… Continue reading