Even the happiest people sometimes experience holiday blues. With so many things to juggle at once, it’s not uncommon to feel down during the “most wonderful time of the year.” Especially for those prone to depression and anxiety, November and December can be particularly difficult to navigate with a smile.
Category: Recovery Counseling
The Importance of Gratitude in Recovery
If you are in recovery, negative thoughts may try to plague your life. These types of thoughts can make you feel as if your life isn’t going anywhere, and can ultimately hurt your recovery process. This is why being thankful is important. Being thankful is about focusing on the good things in your life; the things that make you happy and make your life feel full. A positive attitude has been shown to help those in recovery not only recover faster, but also reduce the chances of relapse. Why? Those who are thankful and positive often:
- Have friends that pull equal weight in the relationship
- Have better outlook on the future,
- Tend to be in less interpersonal conflict
- Have Less Stress
- Are less self-absorbed
According to the American Society of Addiction Medicine, addiction is a chronic disease that affects the brain. It causes changes in the neural pathways that remember the pleasures of activities such as eating, sex, alcohol and drug use, gambling, etc. When triggered, these pleasurable memories cause an overwhelming desire to repeat the experience. Without the proper skills to overcome this desire, and without dealing with the root causes of the issues that led to the addictions to begin with, it’s easy to fall into the cycle of addiction. After all, pleasure is a hard thing to resist.
Managing Money and Addiction Recovery
In recovery, you heard a lot about emotions, spirituality, and self-awareness. One thing you probably didn’t hear enough about was money management even though it might be one of the most important keys to a successful recovery. Why? Many addicts use up their entire life savings to fund their addiction. As soon as they receive cash, they spend it on drugs until they find their way into homelessness, poverty, and debt. Even those who don’t find themselves in financial ruin begin to associate spending money with the rush of getting high. This can turn money into a powerful trigger or lead to spending on other things becoming a replacement addiction. For these reasons, money management is just as important as the “Big Three” — people, places, and things to avoid — and it is critical to understand this fourth threat to sobriety.
Nutrition for Addiction Recovery
Those recovering from addiction can be motivated by these insightful words from Carl Bard: “Though no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start from now and make a brand new ending.” Your issues with drugs or alcohol do not have to shed a dark shadow over your entire life. You can bring new light into your life at any moment and that starts with the choice to change. Quitting is an important and necessary step for change, but there are other steps you must take to ensure your success—strengthening yourself both physically and mentally. Why?
Being Mindful of the Way We Talk About Suicide
The recent untimely death of Robin Williams shed new light on suicide, depression and other mental health issues. The media coverage of his death called attention to both proper and improper ways reports of suicide should be handled by the press. Some reporters focused on how Williams died. Others questioned why someone so successful and wealthy wanted to die. Some political pundits and religious zealots tried to place blame. One even called Williams a coward. Another referred to him as a sinner. The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP), along with a number of other organizations, has written guidelines for the media to follow when reporting on suicide. Read more
Addiction recovery should not be taken lightly. We urge you to go in knowing that it is recovery from a disease and not to expect an overnight change. However this does not mean every step of the way is going to be medical, or miserable. Something as simple as daily exercise can make a huge impact on your recovery.
Chemical Reactions and Addiction Recovery
Exercise actually releases endorphins. Endorphins are a group of neurotransmitters in the brain that are responsible for blocking pain, and feelings of pleasure and euphoria. During addiction, the substance abused was releasing these endorphins, causing a literal physical need for them. We recognize that recovery from any addiction is only in your mind, we can help you through the physical side effects of recovery.
Negative beliefs, thoughts and attitudes have a huge impact on your life. At Pathways, we want to make sure you have the best tools at your disposal to achieve your goals. We will show you how transitioning from negativity to a more positive outlook can improve every aspect of your life.
What is Self-Talk?
Everybody needs to understand that addiction is a disease and not a moral failing. I, better than anyone, have learned that the same people who would not hesitate to seek professional help for a physical illness will hesitate before seeking treatment for substance abuse because the first step always means admitting the problem.
While controversies and website problems have plagued the Affordable Care Act’s (more commonly referred to as Obamacare), many people with family members coping with substance abuse and mental health issues have pondered how the new Federal regulations affect them and their loved ones. People struggling with addiction, looking for help, have also been curious as to what this new program may offer them in the way of help kicking their drug and alcohol habit. Now that open enrollment in the government ACA website has ended, let us discuss what addicts and family members need to know, so they can take advantage of the next round of enrollment at an exchange or when purchasing private insurance outside one of the government sanctioned health exchanges.