My Long and Winding Road to Recovery

Posted on December 29, 2015

Dear Friend,unnamed

Addiction sucks. In the late 1990’s my life was a mess. I had three broken relationships.  I had three children that I never saw.

Cocaine and heroin had become a higher priority in my life than my kids. I was using and dealing drugs. Eventually I was arrested.  I spent two years in jail and three more years in prison. Continue reading

More holiday coping skills

Posted on December 21, 2015

a cute bulldog decorated with reindeer asleep after Christmas dinnerThis is the second in a two-part series on coping skills for the holidays, reprinted from our friends at the Center for Motivation and Change.

Last time, we discussed External Coping Skills, or coping skills that are active by nature. These skills are active by nature, and are very helpful when you have time and space to go do them. However, sometimes you don’t have the ability to go for a run (imagine everyone sitting down for dinner and one person standing up and saying “Mm, dinner looks great, I’m going to go for a short run right now, don’t mind me!” Probably wouldn’t go over too well!). For times like these, we want coping skills that can be done unobtrusively.

Continue reading

Coping skills for the holidays

Posted on December 15, 2015

http://cdn1.motivationandchange.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/christmas.png

Holidays are a time for family, for celebration, and for increased stress and anxiety!  The increase in family togetherness can bring a lot of joy, and it can also be a very difficult time, especially if you have been struggling with issues and have been identified as the “patient” in the family.  All of the extra pairs of eyes, the questions of how you’re doing, and the increase in support, while well-intentioned, can actually increase stress and anxiety in the moment.

Continue reading

When we talk to ourselves, the brain listens

Posted on December 8, 2015

Susan Murphy is a SMART Recovery meeting facilitator in Flemington, NJ, and a recovery advocate from New Hope, PA.

Words matter.  The stories we tell ourselves matter.  How we narrate matters.

Here is an embarrassing story.  I ate cookies for breakfast.  I was obsessing this morning over not getting something I really really REALLY wanted.  I found it hard to shift my focus.  (But then again, I barely tried.  I almost seemed to enjoy reveling in my mood.  What’s up with that?)  My mind started racing more.

I went to brush my teeth, and put sunscreen on my face prior to walking my dogs.  I looked in the mirror and this stupid little poem popped in my head:

Put the sunscreen on my face
You are a disgrace!

I then stopped myself cold, seeing my reflection in the mirror, and realized in a very quick moment that allowing myself to be run by this negative narrative went against my values.  I stood there, and paused for a moment.  I then consciously changed my silly poem to:

Put the sunscreen on my face
You have grace

I paused to let it in.  I saw in that moment, how the shift in words gave me a whole different feeling and direction in my body.  Yes, when we talk to ourselves, the brain listens.  A simple pause, a truth, and a shift in direction happened.  Yes, and I can chose words that move me in the direction of my values.

I leashed the dogs up and went outside.  While I walked, on this cold and beautiful day, I still had quiet echos of ruminating going on in my mind.  By capturing the word and the feeling of grace I was better able to put my attention on the present.  The ruminating (it was over my offer not being accepted for a “dream” home I wanted) changed to disappointment.  I then put my attention on recalling what I am grateful for, and setting simple goals for getting back to focus on the day, a day of possibility, in front of me.

 

Giving Tuesday – December 1

Posted on December 1, 2015

Bringing SMART Recovery to College Campuses Across America

Giving TuesdayFollowing Black Friday and Cyber Monday, #GivingTuesday is a global day dedicated to giving back. On Tuesday, December 1, 2015, charities, families, businesses, community centers, and students around the world will come together for one common purpose: to celebrate generosity and to support non-profits and the work they do to make the world a better place.

For Giving Tuesday 2015, we are focused on bringing the science-based SMART Recovery program to college campuses across America. If you like the idea of making our self-empowering approach for addiction recovery more readily available to youth, please consider supporting this cause: http://bit.ly/SMARTforYouth

Botticelli QuoteSMART for Young Adults: A Good Fit

SMART Recovery®  resonates with young adults in a way that other recovery programs do not. Our abstinence-based program provides tools based on cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) which is a recognized, evidenced-based approach for recovery from all types of addiction.

Your gift helps train youth leaders to bring our science-based, empowering approach for addiction recovery to college campuses across America.

Together, We Can Change Young Lives!

Rather than asking them to declare themselves powerless, our abstinence-based program empowers young adults to overcome their addiction using tools based on CBT.  CBT has been proven through scientific research to be an effective approach for addiction recovery.

You can make an immediate difference for many young adults struggling with substance abuse.

Your tax-deductible donation makes our science-based, empowering program available to more young adults on college campuses across America.

Giving Tuesday

Giving Tuesday only lasts for 24 hours.
Your Giving Tuesday gift keeps giving for a lifetime.
Give the gift of SMART Recovery – the science-based approach to addiction recovery.
http://bit.ly/SMARTforYouth ‪#‎GivingTuesday‬

Another way to help: Use the social media icons below to let your social contacts know about SMART Giving Tuesday.

Thank you for supporting science-based recovery for young adults.

SMART Recovery Conference 2015!

Posted on November 24, 2015

By Dee

Pair of male friends greeting each other with a handshakeAh the SMART Conference this year! This one was quite personal to me, as Cincinnati is my town, so I was just plain excited period. The hotel, super-convenient to the airport, was just lovely. It may have been my favorite of all our hotels (except the one where you can actually sit out on a balcony and overlook the marina. The staff were warm, friendly and SUPER-helpful, and it was just lovely. Extremely conducive to the type of conference we have — people sitting and talking in little groups, comfy chairs and lots of tables and chairs in an open, inviting space. I am seriously going to offer Marriott our compliments and maybe they’ll even give us a bigger discount next time! It was lovely. Continue reading