Recovery Celebrations – You’re Invited!

Posted on September 16, 2014

25th Anniversary of Recovery Month – September, 17
20th Anniversary of SMART Recovery – September 26-28


Recovery Month at the White House: Celebrating 25 Years
In honor of the 25th Anniversary of National Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month, the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) will host a celebratory event at the White House called “Recovery Month at the White House: Celebrating 25 Years.” The event, which will be streamed live on September 17, will feature a panel of recovery advocates who will share their inspirational personal stories and participate in a discussion. Viewers will be able to tweet questions for the panelists to @Botticelli44 using the hashtag #RecoveryatWH at any time prior to, or during the event.

The panel discussion will be moderated by Laurie Dhue, a television journalist and recovery advocate. She will be joined on the panel by:

Christina Huffington, a young person in recovery;
Cris Carter, a former NFL football player and current ESPN analyst in recovery;
Ruben Castaneda, a veteran Washington Post reporter who recently wrote about his path to recovery in his book, S Street Rising;
Tim Willson, the mayor of Brooklyn Center, Minnesota.

The “Recovery Month at the White House” event will help raise awareness Continue reading

Mindfulness

Posted on September 9, 2014

What is Mindfulness?
-Don Sheeley, MD, SMART Recovery Facilitator

What is MindfulnessI use the term “Mindfulness” to mean Active Self-Awareness.

We can be aware of our internal thoughts, feelings, and bodily sensations, and we can be aware of the interaction of ourselves with the external world (sight, sound, touch, taste, feel). We can be aware that we take in sights and sounds, etc. from the external world and process them and apply our internal thoughts and beliefs to them. Then we can become aware that there is someone who is aware of all that, and that guy is Me, the same me who was 12 years old, then 29, and now 62. (Yikes!) That’s it.

So we’re not really “aware of others.” We are aware that we hear what another says and then we are aware of what we think about that and how we feel about that, and maybe we are aware of how we process that.

Similarly, mindfulness is not necessarily placid, comfortable, or relaxed. Continue reading

At Risk for Relapse?

Posted on September 2, 2014

7 Risk factors for relapse
-Bill Abbott, SMART Recovery® Facilitator

7 Risks for Relapse

Over the course of time I’ve observed several sets of circumstances that seem to increase the risk of a person with an addictive problem to sustain a relapse – that is, falling back to the former behavior. I must honestly state that this is an observational piece and I am not sure that there is any science behind it. Nevertheless it certainly does make sense that some of these circumstances do heighten the risk for  a temporary or even permanent stepping out of the stages-of-change process which we call addiction recovery.

7 Risk Factors for Relapse

      Fantasy
      Rumination
      Boredom
      Persisting Frustration
      Intense Emotion
      Social Disconnection
      Opportunity

    What follows is a short description of each of these.

    Fantasy By this I mean thinking about a possible future scenario Continue reading

    Celebrate SMART Recovery’s 20th Anniversary

    Posted on August 26, 2014

    Annual Conference
    September 26-28, 2014 Washington, D.C.
    Exploring the Power of Choice

    Registration Deadline: August 28, 2014.

    SMART Recovery Annual ConferenceWould you like a deeper connection to SMART Recovery? Interested in celebrating SMART’s 20th anniversary and networking with other volunteers? Want to learn more about the science behind SMART? Interested in SMART’s plans for the future?

    The 2014 SMART Annual Conference will be held in the heart of Washington, D.C., at the Grosvenor Auditorium at the National Geographic Headquarters. In keeping with the spirit of the National Geographic, the theme is Exploring the Power of Choice. This conference is geared to inform and inspire, with session topics covering SMART tools, organizational updates, future plans, and with addiction recovery professionals speaking on mindfulness, recovery advocacy, history of recovery, and more.

    Volunteers, online and face-to-face meeting participants, Board members and friends of SMART Recovery can expect to enjoy an impressive line-up of accomplished speakers and topics:

    Speakers

      Michael Botticelli, Acting Director, ONDCP Opening Remarks

      Tom Horvath, Ph.D., ABPP, President: “SMART 101”

      Shari Allwood, Exec Director: SMART Worldwide

      William L. White, Sr. Research Consultant: History of the Recovery Movement (rec.)

      Jonathan von Breton, MA, CCMHC: SMART Tools

      Peter Gaumond, ONDCP: Recovery Advocacy

      Steve Gumbley, MA, ACDP II: Recovery Advocacy

      Hank Robb, Ph.D., ABPP: Becoming Mindful

      …and more

    Optional Excursion

    An optional sightseeing tour of the Washington D.C. area will kick off the event Continue reading

    Overcoming Addictions – Recovery Web App

    Posted on August 19, 2014

    Scientifically Supported Recovery Option

    Overcoming AddictionsLooking for a personalized, structured plan of attack for making positive changes in support of your addiction recovery?

    Overcoming Addictions (OA) is a new alternative in the spectrum of recovery options. It is a confidential and interactive web app that can help you achieve and maintain abstinence from addictions.

    OA is an abstinence-oriented, cognitive behavioral, internet application based on the program of SMART Recovery. SMART Recovery is an organization that has adapted empirically supported treatment strategies for use in a mutual help framework with in-person meetings, online meetings, a forum, and other resources. Continue reading

    How to Help a Loved One Find Addiction Recovery

    Posted on August 12, 2014

    Alternatives for Family & Friends
    -Roxanne A., SMART Recovery® Facilitator

    depression Chances are you were never taught how to manage a relationship with someone who is struggling with a substance abuse problem. You may find that without the necessary skills, your role as a family member or friend of someone with addiction becomes increasingly stressful as the addiction progresses.

    Ignoring the problem or attempting to change it with harsh confrontation often makes the emotional, financial and physiological problems that accompany the substance abuse even worse.

    CRAFT: An approach that gets people into treatment

    There is an alternate, non-confrontational, scientifically-validated approach to managing the problem. This approach is outlined in the books Get Your Loved One Sober: Alternatives to Nagging, Pleading, and Threatening  and Beyond Addiction, How Science & Kindness Help People Change. Using Community Reinforcement And Family Training (CRAFT) these books teach family members and friends how to improve their own lives while at the same time providing skills for improving their relationship with their loved one. In repeated clinical trials, CRAFT’s approach proved twice as likely Continue reading