Recover In Paradise: California

Manifest Destiny brought early settlers of America westward. Everything out west held promise of a better life, especially in California. From the prospect of the gold rush to the modernization of cities like San Francisco, something special was happening on the other side of our maturing country. The allure of the west and of California…

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Why is There a Focus on Spirituality in Recovery?

Spirituality may be a bothersome term for some because it seems to imply religious thought. In recovery, however, spirituality is simply addressing the indefinable part of ourselves that caused us to fall victim to hopelessness and depression, and seek drugs and alcohol as a way to fix our problematic internal condition. These feelings are symptomatic…

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An Agnostic Approach to Spirituality in Recovery

Many newcomers to recovery fellowships assume that they are entering into a religious program. While many of these fellowships stress the importance of spirituality, they stress that engagement in the program does not require one to subscribe to any specific religious denomination or believe in anyone else’s conception of a “higher power.” Words like “god”…

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The Dangers of Opioid Maintenance Medications

Drugs like suboxone and methadone are used to treat opioid addiction by delivering enough narcotic to reduce the symptoms of withdrawal. The theory is that these medications will keep a person addicted to opioids from using them by replacing their drug of choice with a safer prescription medication. Suboxone, in particular, contains naloxone, an opioid…

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Learning to Respond Rather Than React

As men and women suffering from the disease of addiction, we are well-aware that our gut instinct is not always the right decision. In early sobriety, our emotions are often heightened, and purely emotion-based reactions can often lead to hurting ourselves or others and feeling regret for the way we handled the situation. Instead, we…

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Progress, Not Perfection in Recovery

“Progress, not perfection” is a common phrase used in the rooms of recovery fellowships. The concept is derived from the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous. After presenting the 12 steps, the Big Book states: “Do not be discouraged. No one among us had been able to maintain anything like perfect adherence to these principles. We…

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Why Can’t I Get Sober on My Own?

Many men and women suffering from the disease of addiction have attempted to stop countless times. They go through unimaginable pain while attempting to detoxify their bodies, only to pick up another drink or drug shortly after. This is because there are certain aspects of the disease of addiction that make it nearly impossible to…

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The Joys of Self-Discovery in Sobriety

In a state of active addiction, we lost touch with who we were at the core of our being. We began identifying ourselves with the drugs we were using and put up walls to block our true nature off from the rest of the world. When we get sober, however, we begin to realize that…

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How Do I Know If I’m Ready to Seek Treatment?

Addiction is a disease that strongly affects our thinking and brain chemistry. We will always search for an excuse not to seek help because we have such a strong compulsion to continue using drugs that we will trick ourselves into thinking that our life is manageable. Generally, if we find ourselves asking the question of…

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