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Posts Tagged ‘addiction self help’

MAINE COMPASS: Social stigma of drug addiction creates roadblocks to recovery
Those seeking relief can choose from a variety of options for healing; some of the more popular methods are group or individual outpatient counseling, a residential programs, 12-step or other self-help programs, or medication-assisted withdrawal and …
Read more on Morning Sentinel

Heroin addict fights for insurance coverage for treatment
Lukas wanted help. "I've never been more desperate in my life," said Lukas. Ironically, the family's insurance company compounded the misery. "They really need to make sure that the addicts that are asking for help get the help when they need it, when …
Read more on W*USA 9

Online addiction therapy tool launches today
An online therapy initiative to help people reduce or stop their use of cannabis is being launched today in Auckland. PotHelp.org.nz – produced by the New Zealand Drug Foundation and funded by the Ministry of Health – is an online resource for people …
Read more on New Zealand Herald

Addiction, Self-Gratification or Love? How Do We Deal With Our Pain?
Many of us have sought help from medicine — standard Western and alternative modalities — psychotherapy, spirituality, self-help programs, whatever seems like it might fix the pain or make it more bearable. And to the degree that all of these …
Read more on Huffington Post

Cure Your Work Addiction. Here's How
It's a question that trainers with the Strategic Coach program ask in order to help break their entrepreneur clients of work addiction. Dan Sullivan, the Toronto-based founder of Strategic Coach, has often said that you can have everything you want in …
Read more on TIME

Dr. Drew: Jodi, interpersonal terrorist
When she became obsessed and addicted to this guy, she ended up using power and control as the way to try to pull him into her world — to complete her. People also saw how disconnected Arias appeared to be in the … She mirrored other people, trying …
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Operation Christmas Cheer: With help, couple defeats drug addiction demon
Tate had been a self-described "hustler" for much of his adult life, supporting his habit by dealing crack to a couple of dozen fellow addicts who hung around Roberts Lake in Seaside. It wasn't quite love at first sight, Snow says. "We all got into a …
Read more on Monterey County Herald

Too Much Holiday 'Cheer'
If you suspect someone in your life might be struggling with addiction, you're certainly not alone. There are so many places to turn for help. And if you're the one who's struggling, believe me when I say: your loved ones spotlight your problem because …
Read more on Patch.com

AA Helps Men and Women In Different Ways
Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) is a group self-help program that helps people stay sober and assists alcoholics in achieving sobriety. A new study … The objective of the program was to compare three approaches to alcohol addiction treatment. Participants …
Read more on PsychCentral.com

Alcohol addiction is not a disease! Quit drinking today. A self help alternative to quit drinking forever.

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“There are many reasons people will give why they drink or drug and why it is not a problem for them. If it truly was not a problem, they would not need reasons.”

Quit drinking

A Practical Solution

So you have decided alcohol or drugs just aren’t cutting it for you anymore and you are entertaining the idea of cutting back or quitting. You know the first step is to not use alcohol or drugs but after that what happens? Just the thought of never using alcohol or drugs again may cause you fear and anxiety. You wonder how you will ever enjoy another get together with an old college-drinking buddy. You wonder how you will make it through the holidays, weekends, or cope with all the stress in life. You feel you may miss out on some of life’s activities and pleasures because you no longer use alcohol or drugs. The doubts about quitting, and the reasons to continue alcohol or drug use start flying around in your head. These doubts are normal but they can often create major obstacles in eliminating alcohol or drugs from one’s life. The reasons and excuses above are important in the sense that they illustrate the beliefs of many who think they can’t quit. They believe their lives will be missing something if they do quit alcohol or drugs.

Below you will find a list of some common misconceptions of those with alcohol or drug addictions. I will give a brief refute to these misconceptions in an attempt to lessen the reasons why some believe they can’t quit alcohol or drugs. (For a more thorough and comprehensive look at these misconceptions see Allan Carr’s book Easy Way To Control Alcohol.) I will then list five practical solutions someone struggling with an alcohol or drug addiction can use to remain alcohol and drug free.

1) Alcohol or drugs help me escape problems.

– False, they numb your senses and mind. They do not address the originating problem or stress but rather intensify and compound it. A great example of this is if your car’s engine light came on. Would you rewire the circuit so that the light did not come on, or would you take your car to a mechanic to have your engine checked? Obviously, rewiring the circuit would do nothing to solve the problem. Likewise, alcohol and drugs only numb you to the real issues that need to be addressed and looked at.

2) Alcohol and drugs relax me.

– False, to be truly relaxed you need to address what is causing you the stress. Alcohol and drugs only deaden the senses; they do not remove the stress.

3) It takes willpower to quit and I don’t know if I have enough.

– False, there is no willpower involved here, simply a choice. Willpower is only needed if we look at how we are giving something up. There is nothing to give up when one decides to quit using alcohol or drugs for these things do nothing for you to begin with. In actuality, what you are deciding to do is choose an alternative way to handle life. This doesn’t take willpower (although it may take some practice) All it takes is an active choice. Alcohol and drugs do not demand you use them. You use them because you believe you can’t handle life without them. The choice to use or not use alcohol or drugs is always present. Anyone who has struggled with an addiction to alcohol or drugs can verify they have, at times, refrained from use. It’s a choice to use or not use, don’t complicate it. A simple illustration would go as follows: What if I said I have milk and orange juice in the fridge, and I would like the milk. Would it take willpower for you to not grab the orange juice? Of course not. It would just be a simple choice. View alcohol and drugs the same way. You can use or not use; it’s your choice. Willpower has nothing to do with it.

4) I drink to be sociable.
– False, alcohol and drug use do not make someone more sociable, but rather remove inhibitions and common sense. Alcohol and drugs give false courage and often with much embarrassment.

5) If I don’t continue using alcohol or drugs, I will be physically sick with withdrawal.

– Not necessarily, most people I have encountered experience flu like symptoms for around three days. They may be a little shaky and disoriented, but it is no worse than the common hangover or flu for most. The major battle is mental. For the hard-core alcohol or drug user I would consult a physician for your body will be going through a major adjustment. Be smart, if you are at all concerned about the physical symptoms, consult your physician.

6) I enjoy drinking.

– False, in reality you believe you cannot enjoy life without alcohol or drugs. For the alcohol users, do you remember your first taste of liquor? Did you say, “Wow, that is the best tasting liquid I have ever had?” Most of those who currently struggle with an addiction wish they weren’t drinking or using drugs while they use. Where is the enjoyment in that?

There are many reasons people will give why they drink or drug and why it is not a problem for them. If it truly was not a problem, they would not need reasons. Do I have to give a reason for drinking water or milk? No, because it is no big issue for me. So the above are some brief explanations of the reasons some may use to continue drug or alcohol use.

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The following is a list five things an alcohol or drug user can utilize to help them quit drinking alcohol or stop drug use.

1) Get out of your head!

– You have decided to quit using alcohol or drugs after much mental debate. A day or two goes by and you start to feel better physically. You are very proud of yourself. Something happens at work that is stressful and what happens. Your head starts looking for a way to cope with the stress. The alcohol or drug debate begins again. You start rationalizing and justifying how it may not be so bad for one more drink or hit. STOP right there! You are and will achieve what you think! Get out of your head and focus on something else. It’s your negative thinking that got you into the drug and alcohol mess to begin with. But how do you do this?

2) Be selfless not selfish!

– A major reason to want to use alcohol or drugs is selfishness. The poor me syndrome. The whole world starts to revolve around you and no one has as bad as problems as you do. Well none of these problems will be remedied by using alcohol or drugs. You wont pay your bills or patch up the situation with your spouse or at work by using. You wont even find that moment of happiness you are so desperately seeking by using alcohol and drugs. Instead of going up into your head and feeling miserable about yourself or situation, help someone! Get out of your head and into someone else’s world. Kindness to others is the key here, for it does not allow you to have a pity party in your head. The greatest cure and joy in the world to combat misery and selfishness is to help someone else. Talk to someone who seems down. Volunteer at a hospital or detox center. Do anything to get out of your head and not think about yourself. It works!

3) Do something!
– Nothing will change if you sit on the couch feeling sorry for yourself. You need motion and action. All the planning and goals mean little if you don’t put some action behind them. Do something! Get a hobby, volunteer your time, go running, read a book. Whatever will help put you in motion. The concept of fear is important here for most who struggle with alcohol or drug addiction have let fear immobilize them. Remember this: fear lessons and becomes irrelevant when we are actively working toward a goal. Do something toward a goal you have.

4) Choose a goal!

– A goal is something you want to achieve that does not hurt yourself or others. It’s what you want to focus your life towards. Those who struggle with alcohol or drug addiction often lose sight of what their goals are. Find one! What do you enjoy doing? Even if it is a small goal, find one. Finding a goal and working towards it eliminates the power of alcohol or drugs in your life. Your life becomes about who you want to be not who you were.

5) Establish meaning in your life!

– If you are spiritual or religious, PRAY. Re-connect with life and that quiet but persistent voice inside you. Your emotions will tell you when your focus is wrong. Emotions are the nerves to the soul. Listen to them, and if you are having negative emotions look at where your focus is right now. Readjust it! When you were drinking or using drugs your focus was only on yourself. You weren’t happy. You can be! Who do you want to be, what do you want to value, and who do you want to care about? Focus is individual for everyone, but you know it is there. You feel it. You are not ignorant, weak, or stupid. You have just never pushed through your fear of life by getting out of your head, thinking of others first, and putting action behind your goals. You do these simple steps and you have just obtained your new focus!

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“When this monster enters my mind, I do not sit still. But rather I act, without delay. Therefore, I am able to defeat what others bow down to” ….Unknown

Addiction self help, alcohol addiction self help, drug addiction self help

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Understanding Relapse


By now the term “relapse” is both widely used and engrained into the minds of most all of who are lucky enough to enter some form of treatment in the US for chemical dependency. The “treated” person is informed that with chemical dependency, relapse can occur at any time and that from moment to moment one must be alerted to the “triggers” that may cause this regrettable fall, back to the clutches of addiction. “One day at a time” and, “you are only an arms length away from your next drink” are the clichés which echo through most AA halls and treatment offices. Although well intentioned, the concept of relapse is associated with the idea that chemical dependency or addiction is a disease. Those unfortunate enough to have this biological/chemical abnormality will forever have to be conscious of their struggle to maintain sobriety. There is no escape. The disease of chemical dependency never leaves, and in fact it is waiting in the background for its chance to reclaim its victim. Relapse is viewed as something outside the realm of the person’s control. Sure, no one forces them to pick up a drink, but if they succumb to the temptation, it is blamed on the disease. It is not until the addict surrenders his will and admits complete defeat that any hope of abstinence from chemical dependency can be obtained. Or so we hope, remember the disease is powerful and no one is off the hook, ever!

I feel the above is unfortunate and that our current outlook and use of the term “relapse” needs a more honest investigation.

First of all, there is no study or medical literature that proves or has found there to be any biological disease with chemical dependency or addiction. There is none! Believe it or not, the disease idea is used purely because no one has a clue why someone would continue to destroy his or her lives through an addiction. If we believe people would not consciously choose chemical dependency or addiction as a way of life, we conclude it must be a disease.

With no scientific literature to support this, the concept of relapse is absurd. We cannot relapse if there is no disease.

Telling people addiction is a disease, and relapse is part of that disease, (when both are false) is setting them up for failure. The disease concept does not encourage the addict to choose and control what he can to improve his life. The disease concept strips the addict of free will and puts them under the control of an imaginary disease. Again, no one and nothing can force them to pick up a drink. But if they do take the drink, it is the disease, not the man. Try this; think of someone you know who doesn’t drink. Now think of them as an alcoholic. What did you just add to them? You got it, a disease. By labeling them an alcoholic, in your mind, you have just separated them as being “different” from the normal person because of some internal biological craving. They are not different. They are just choosing a form of behavior you would not.

Secondly, 80% of those who admit they once had a problem with an addiction no longer have the addiction. They “recovered” on their own. The importance here is that these people are not struggling with a day-to-day battle of the wills to abstain from drug or alcohol use. They did not need 90 meetings in 90 days, or intensive outpatient therapy with relapse plans. They simply quit. They can do this because there is no disease. Their values and focus changed and they decided drugs and alcohol no longer held the power and significance it once had. People normally change when they realize they have something to lose if they don’t change. Pain and consequences are important here for when one gets disturbed enough they will be more motivated to change. Those who continue to use alcohol or drugs have not yet been convinced that life would be better lived if they quit. Some would then ask if those who continue to use alcohol or drugs need to “hit bottom” in order to change. The answer to that is simple. No.

The addict will continue to use until he or she is convinced that they can successfully live life without the use of alcohol or drugs.

This can come at any time and for some, it is never. There is no “bottom”. It is relative, and has more to do with why people think they can’t quit than why people continue to drink or use drugs. In other words, I am not going to quit until I think I can.

So knowing that addiction is not a disease, relapse cannot exist. And, knowing that the majority of people quit on their own, personal perception and choice is important. Why?

Because it is human nature to choose what we perceive will give us the most happiness at any given moment

But what does happiness have to do with drinking or using drugs? Anyone can tell that the addict isn’t happy. That’s right, those who drink or drug aren’t happy but that doesn’t mean they can’t perceive it to bring happiness. Addicts are full of fear, like many people who live life. The only difference is that the addict consistently chooses not to productively deal with that fear. The addict hides, and with this hiding comes the illusion of control. They numb themselves to have a moment of peace, happiness. Now are they actually experiencing peace and happiness? Of course not, but if you have a splinter in your foot and you knock yourself on the head with a baseball bat, you wont be thinking about the foot!

But this still does not answer the question of why some can’t seem to quit even though they portray a real desire to do so?

The obvious answer would be because they are told they cannot.

The same people who want to help them are at the same time telling them they can never escape their addiction completely.

This is not acceptable to me. Let’s look at the process. Someone struggling with an addiction goes to counseling or AA. They are given all the above and more standard information. They buy into “One day at a time” and the disease concept and get “sober”. They are excited about this and jump into the “recovery” process full force. But something starts to happen when they are told “recovery” is a life long process and they can never escape their disease. They find only two choices; remain in AA(treatment), or fail. They remain in AA and periodic counseling for a while. But shortly they start realizing that the mistakes they have made are coming back to haunt them. Their finances are in trouble, friends are hesitant to call, family distrusts them, they still are not happy, etc. Things are a mess. What happens? Well when you take away the addiction, the person becomes like everyone else (probably with a bit more mess to clean up though). There is no more hiding or excuses and the person is hit with the realization that the position he is now in is from his own past choices. He knows he can refrain from drinking or drugging, because he is doing it now. But, he feels alone and has difficulty understanding and controlling his feelings. For the first time in a while he feels fear. What does he do?

He holds on to his “recovery”. It is his saving grace. It becomes his identity and image.

His self-esteem seems to hinder on his progress of the 12 steps and how other members view him. But this wears thin and he soon finds out that people don’t care. The world goes on. His progress in the steps do not land him a job or get his family back. His image falls. He remembers his disease. At least he has that fight. It becomes harder to deny the usefulness his old addiction could give him now. It’s a disease remember. He feels out of control and needs to regain it. He uses and the cycle starts again. Until he realizes that addiction is a choice, he cannot regain control and ownership of his life.

He must come to realize that his individual worth is not because he is “sober” but because he is alive.

If he does “relapse” it is not because he has a disease, but because he chose to deal with his fear by avoidance.

So why can’t people quit drugs or alcohol when everything they say indicates they want to? Simply, they feel they cannot live life without it. They have made the wrong choices for so long and depended on their addictions as a crutch. To stop drinking or using drugs would strip them of the only constant they know:

The ability to control their fear and helplessness in a way they perceive as most effective for their particular situation.

This is relapse, addiction. So what can we do? Lets keep this simple.

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– We must empower the individual struggling with alcohol or drugs. We do this by taking away all excuses they may have to why they cannot stop drinking or druging. They will have many of these excuses. But the bottom line is that they don’t believe they have the necessary personal resourses to overcome it. Find their talents and help them emphasize them. I do not believe they are weak willed or spiritually deprived. Their will’s have taken them to a place where no one else would want to go. If they wanted to drink or drug, they found a way to do it. Use this strength to re-focus them. Their spirituality is normally quite strong. They are searching for something, a meaning. Help them find this meaning. Victor Frankl wrote that if you give a person purpose and meaning, they will find a way through anything. No matter how hopeless it seems. Even atheists believe in something. Even if it is life itself.

– There is no biological or chemical disease.

If they use, it’s their choice. Relapse is a choice. Tell them this.

– For every choice to use alcohol or drugs, there is an alternative choice also available.

They may have forgotten this part. The alternative choice will most likely impact the problem more directly to resolve it and not further its existence. Fear may enter here. They have avoided responsibility like the plague. But when they finally realize that their control comes from responsible choices they are more willing to attempt it. The key is when they can see how choosing the responsible choice will positively impact their life situation. When life situations can’t be seen improving, change will be hard fought.

– No one truely enjoys their addictive behavior.

They don’t drink or drug because they “like it”. Think back to the first few times you used. The taste was awful and it most likely made you sick. No one I have ever encountered formed their desire to use after the first drink or hit. It took some work.

– Make sure goals are clear and achievable.

The addict must develop a clear vision and plan of what they want and who they want to be. This is most important, for through their use of alcohol or drugs most have lost sight of the dreams and goals they once had. Remind them. Most healthy people look at the world as their playground. The addict looks at the world as their prison. Help them find the key.

– Avoid cleaning up their mess.

Don’t get involved with the blame game. Addicts are real good at this. They can twist any situation to support their misery. Let choices and consequences be theirs. This way there is no one to blame but themselves.

– Let them know that it is ok to feel.

Most addicts don’t know how to do this. Teach them. To them, feelings are the enemy and have to be avoided. Feelings come and go and feelings will not kill you. It’s how you respond to them that matters.

– Fear is at the root of all addictions

Get them to takle one of these fears head on and they gain some ground. Build on these small successes so they can start to see their innate abilities to change.

– Get them out of their heads!

There is no destructive force in the world greater than an addicts self centered thinking. Mental illness has been defined as perceiving without testing. We perceive according to the stories we tell ourselves in our heads. It does not matter the reality of these stories. They are how we see the world. The addict has such a selfish view (story) that if they are left in their own heads there is little chance of positive change. What works well here is to have the addict help out others. If they are thinking of someone else, they will not be thinking of themselves. There is no greater fullfillment in the world than one who truly gives to another and expects nothing in return. Teach them to give.

– Perhaps the most dangerous idea in the treatment field is the phrase “You have to do it for yourself”.
Who do you think the addict has been serving all this time? His family and friends? Get them out of their heads! Teach them to help others.

– Motives drive an addiction.

Teach them to examine the motives behind their behavior. Most of their motives will be fear based. Remember their addiction is their attempt to control an internal feeling of fear and helplessness. A good rule of thumb in checking motives to a behavior is to ask, “will this hurt or harm myself or others?” If the answer is yes, then difficulties lie ahead. Behaviors with fear as their motive will only result in self protecting behavior. They will not focus on a solution to a problem and will not satisfy.

– Fear and guilt do little to help the addict abstain from alcohol or drugs!

Most professionals focus on the negative consequences as a reason to abstain from alcohol or drugs. This is the wrong approach. The addict already knows, or has experienced the negative consequences associated with using. This has not hindered their use. They may cut down for a while after experiencing a negative consequence only to resume normal use as time goes on. This is because people do not like to live in fear. They want to escape it. Guilt is the same thing. People want to avoid it. Fear and guilt focus on the problem not the solution. Teach them to focus on the solution. Help them see that change occurs when they focus their life on something other than drinking or drugging. Don’t define them as “in recovery” or by “sober time”. This is a focus on the problem. When they realize they can handle stress in life, not because the are “sober” or “in recovery” but because they are alive and equipped with the ability to do so, drugs and alcohol will be irrelevant.

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ALCOHOLISM & DRUG ADDICTION TREATMENT ALTERNATIVE

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Addiction is a choice, not a disease!

Contrary to what other programs may have led you to believe, you are more than a “client” to be treated or labeled with a disease. You have choices, motivation and free will. Your future depends, not on the theories and opinions of counselors and doctors, but on that inner desire you have to be more than you are now.

You’ve tried treatment & endless meetings ….. And realize, “That’s just not me!”

This workbook is based on success. If you have tried traditional treatment and still don’t understand why you can’t stop alcohol or drugs, or if you are attempting to quit for the first time, this workbook can help.

It does not have to cost thousands of dollars and years of therapy to change your life! This workbook is empowering for both the person who struggles with an addiction and those who try to help.

This is not an AA, 12-step approach. AA is a great support network and has helped many, but not everyone is the same. We all have individual thoughts, dreams and goals with diferent ways of getting to them.

I feel that eliminating options to “recovery” by saying only AA can work, discourages many and can often be detrimental for those who disagree with the main stream disease model approach.

There is hope! There are many who have found the secret to ridding themselves of their addiction forever.

I have often heard that if someone struggling with alcohol or drugs does not agree with AA or their therapist that they must be “in denial”, “resistant to therapy” or “not following the program” and will soon relapse. I disagree strongly!

You do not have to be miserable, attend meetings for the rest of your life, or flounder around with an endless struggle against addiction! You already have the answer and ability to change. All that is needed is a willingness and desire for change!

My purpose in creating the workbook is to share my views, oppinions and experience in what I have learned in the process with the hope that it will encourage others to do the same.

I am not a medical doctor, researcher or scholar, but rather just someone who wanted more. Success in recovery is extremely possible! The ability to “recover” is already within us and this reality should not be forgotten. Keep believing!


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AA alternative. Stop drinking!

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*The truth about relapse!

*You are not sick because you care! The codependency myth.

*The thoughts of others who have recovered, forever!

*Addiction as a choice, not a disease!

*Real & Practical advice and guidance to beat addiction!

*What can I do?

……. and more

This workbook contains real advice on: relapse, codependency, alcohol abuse, drug abuse, addiction recovery, and much more! You will learn a new and empowering view of how to take control of your addiction, forever! Great advice for those who try to help the drug or alcohol user. There is hope and you can change your life! Let me give you what I know and what works!

It is written from personal experience and from talking with those who already found the solution to drug and alcohol addiction. This ebook explains and allows you to learn what these people did to overcome their addiction. It is not a losing battle and people quit using alcohol or drugs all the time! This ebook will tell you how. Alcoholism and substance abuse is not a disease. Learn how to see your behavior in a new light by developing positive goals and vision!

If you have any problems or questions or need additional help for any addiction needs, please contact me through email below and I will be glad to assist you any way I can.

Many have already used this information to redirect their lives and end addiction forever.

I thank you, and enjoy! Timothy Welch

timothyjwelch@gmail.com

The Forgotten-Five Steps
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Drug & Alcohol Abuse, Substance Abuse & Chemical Dependency Recovery
Addiction is a choice, not a disease!
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