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Does Prayer Really Help Reduce Cravings?

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  Prayer and spiritual awakenings have always been integral to the 12-step approach. Step 11 is: “Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God, as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.” Of course, other steps involving turning your… Read On »

Is There a Difference Between Introversion and Social Anxiety?

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Social anxiety disorder, or SAD, affects about 15 million Americans and is a major risk factor in developing a substance use disorder. SAD is when you feel acutely anxious in social situations. People with SAD want to connect with others but their anxiety is an obstacle. They often deal with this problem by using alcohol… Read On »

What’s Wrong with Self-medicating?

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It’s often said that someone with unhealthy substance use patterns is self-medicating. At least half–and possibly many more–of people with substance use disorders also have a co-occurring mental health issue. These typically include anxiety disorders, major depression, bipolar disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, obsessive/compulsive disorder, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, schizophrenia, personality disorders, or autism spectrum disorders. Often, someone… Read On »

8 Tips for Quitting Caffeine in Addiction Recovery

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Studies suggest that people recovering from a substance use disorder drink a lot of coffee. One study found that while about 64 percent of Americans drink coffee every day, about 89 percent of AA members drink coffee every day. That’s a significant difference. For most people, a cup or two of coffee in the morning… Read On »

Is All-or-nothing Thinking Hurting Your Recovery?

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All-or-nothing thinking is a common cognitive distortion that can cause all kinds of problems, including anxiety, anger, depression, and even poor health. It means thinking in extremes. Either something is all good or all bad. It’s similar to perfectionism, but it extends beyond your own sphere to pretty much everything. Thinking in extremes can make… Read On »

7 Ways You Can You Eat Healthier on a Budget

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  Eating better can make your recovery from addiction or mental illness much easier. Many studies have shown that diet has a significant impact on mental health. A diet high in nutrient-rich whole foods has been shown to improve mood and reduce the symptoms of depression, often by a lot. A healthy diet is also… Read On »

Should You Quit Caffeine in Addiction Recovery?

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One of the longest lasting stereotypes of AA members is that they drink lots of coffee and smoke lots of cigarettes. A large study found that there is some truth to this popular perception. While roughly 14 percent of Americans smoke and about 64 percent of Americans drink coffee every day, about 57 percent of… Read On »

How Does Learning to Tolerate Discomfort Improve Your Recovery?

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Learning to tolerate discomfort is a skill that will frequently be useful in addiction recovery. Learning to tolerate discomfort, or “distress tolerance,” is a specific skill taught as part of dialectical behavioral therapy, or DBT. DBT is a specific form of cognitive behavioral therapy developed to help people with borderline personality disorder, but which has… Read On »

Why Does Forgiveness Matter in Addiction Recovery?

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Quite a lot has been said about forgiveness in addiction recovery. This may seem to make little sense. After all, what do anger, blame, and resentment have to do with drinking too much or using other substances? A lot, actually. Often, addiction is exacerbated by something else, such as trauma, abuse, or neglect. For some… Read On »

7 Tips for Breaking Bad Habits in Recovery

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A successful recovery from addiction requires making a lot of changes. Recovery isn’t just about abstinence, but rather making healthy lifestyle changes, including spending time with positive people, eating healthy, getting regular exercise, sleeping enough, and sticking to a recovery plan. It also means letting go of the unhealthy habits that are holding you back.… Read On »