How Do I Become a Member of Alcoholics Anonymous?

Newcomers to the rooms of 12-step recovery programs like Alcoholics Anonymous may hear the word “member” and think that there is some sort of process required to officially join. Fortunately, this is not the case. There are no dues, fees, secret handshakes, or passwords to become a member of a 12-step recovery group. All you…

How Does Addiction Change the Brain?

Addiction is a complex disease that affects sufferers in every possible way. One of the greatest consequences of addiction is the changes it makes to the brain. Overtime, chronic drug or alcohol use causes the brain to adapt in ways that change the brain’s physical structure. Not only do these changes lead to addiction and…

Making Use of Mettā

Metta is a Buddhist concept that loosely translates to “loving-kindness.” Additional meanings of the term may be friendliness, benevolence, goodwill, amity, and empathy for others. Metta is a means of recognizing that there is a sense of solidarity in humanity, and approaching others with a sense of friendliness, consideration, and generosity. Recovery focuses on living…

What are the Long-Term Effects of Meth?

Methamphetamine is a powerful stimulant drug that can cause devastating health consequences. Short-term effects of methamphetamine are dangerous, but the long-term consequences of methamphetamine are extremely serious and terrifying. Most people are familiar with seeing the “before and after” photographs of people addicted to methamphetamine, but the internal health problems that arise from the addiction,…

Improve Your Recovery by Staying Humble

Many men and women suffering from the disease of addiction have problems with humility. Our egos are often overblown and not reflective of the true reality of our lives. That is not to say we cannot be confident, but we cannot allow our egos or overconfidence to get in the way of our sobriety. When…

What is Heroin Withdrawal?

Heroin is an incredibly addictive drug that makes serious changes to the brain and body. The physical dependence that heroin use causes leads to a host of severe withdrawal symptoms that can feel overwhelming. Many people with heroin addiction need to continually use greater amounts more frequently simply to stave off possible withdrawal symptoms. According…

Patience is a Virtue

Patience can mean the difference between recovery and continued addiction. When we are patient, we are able to stay honest, open-minded, and willing to go through the process of recovery. Without patience, we may be less likely to reach a point where we are able to develop all the tools necessary to overcome addiction. Patience,…

Is Sobriety Boring?

Addiction is a disease that entirely takes over our lives. We come to rely upon substances to control every aspect of our feelings. We use on good day, on bad days, on days when we are overwhelmed, and on days when we are bored. Using drugs becomes our only source of enjoyment and comfort, relieving…

When We Aren’t Forgiven for Our Addiction

Pat Schneeweis, better known as Pat the Bunny of the band Ramshackle Glory, sings in the song Never Coming Home (Song for the Guilty): “Forgiveness from those that we hurt in this world never was guaranteed.” Schneeweis, whose struggles with heroin and sobriety are well documented in his songs, touches on an important note about…

How Do I Know if I’ve Hit Rock Bottom?

Rock bottom is a complicated concept. Many people assume that rock bottom must include serious consequences such as financial problems, homelessness, and jail time or legal problems. However, rock bottom is a different experience for everyone and can be entirely internal. Peg O’Connor, in a 2014 Psychology Today article entitled What’s Wrong With ‘Rock Bottom’,…