Category Archives: Information

Links For a Week!

Hi friends. I’ll be heading off to Colorado to try my hand, for the fourth time, at skiing (yipes) and thus will not be around to post anything for a while, so! I thought I would leave you with a weeks’ worth of delightful links to chew on.

And a-waaaaa-ay we go!

 

*Do you live in Northern Ireland? Are you looking for support there, including in a face-to-face meeting? Look no further – LifeRing Northern Ireland is there! For more information, please visit their website and/or Facebook pages:

www.liferingni.com/

www.facebook.com/LiferingNi

*This article’s been all over the web for a coupla weeks now (link to follow), but I still feel compelled to offer my two cents on it. Therefore, please enjoy the following mini rant from me:
  • I find this article overly simplistic in it’s “discovery” of the “real reason” for addiction, A). because yes, while finding a better “room” in which to spend one’s time helps immensely, 2). Some scientist isn’t in charge of controlling your drug habit or changing your environment – you are. And, let’s face it – I’m sure rats have some choices to make in their lives, but given the choice between rooms, how many of them would or do voluntarily go to another one to begin with?
  • I also find it interesting that so many posting in the comments boiled the article down to being the reason why AA is the perfect example of finding a better room, whereas I see ANY recovery group being able to provide the same supportive experience. LifeRing certainly did for me.

Anyhoo, any thoughts on this one?

www.huffingtonpost.com/johann-hari/the-real-cause-of-addiction

*Today marks the one year anniversary of Philip Seymour Hoffman’s tragic death from a drug overdose. The  performances he would’ve given will be missed for years to come, but here’s an excellent, spot on synopsis of each of the roles he played throughout his career:

thedissolve.com/features/career-view/890-the-epic-uncool-of-philip-seymour-hoffman/

*Mini-rant, part deux:

An in depth, well-researched and well-written article about the state of heroin addiction treatment in America. In many ways, this article reiterates what I’ve believed for a long time about addiction, which is that if it is a disease (and of course for many that’s entirely debatable), then why is it not being treated medically, as all other diseases are? For example, can you imagine treating mental illness, diabetes, or even cancer with, in large part, a spiritual solution? I know I can’t, and I also know that works well for some, but not for all. I think this article accurately demonstrates why:

projects.huffingtonpost.com/dying-to-be-free-heroin-treatment

*With that, the DSM (The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) has changed its definition of recovery, and SAMHSA (the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Adminstration) has redefined recovery, as well – all of which bodes well for secular and other recovery treatment resources:

www.rehabs.com/pro-talk-articles/the-addiction-therapists-guide-to-change-in-the-21st-century/

*Finally, eine kleine recovery humor – I would highly recommend the South Park clip at the top of the first page:

recoveryhumor.com/

Have a good one! :)

~~

 

Linkapalooza!

Here’s a few links to some interesting articles on the web ~ have a look-see if you need something to help keep you occupied this weekend, and have a good one!

Even if Christmas and the last year are over, this is still a great list of books:

http://ideas.ted.com/2014/12/16/books-worth-reading-this-holiday-recommended-by-bill-gates-susan-cain-and-more/

Like to cook but find so many recipes call for alcohol? Here’s a fabulous list of substitutions you can use instead:

http://whatscookingamerica.net/alcoholsub.htm

Are you a Highly-Sensitive Person (HSP)?

http://reset.me/story/highly-sensitive-person-need-know-science-personality-type/

This one’s been all over the web for the past coupla weeks, but in case you haven’t seen it, here you go:

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/01/07/health/alcohol-poisoning-kills-6-americans-a-day-federal-report-finds.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&module=second-column-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news&_r=1

And last but not least -holy crap, I got the “MacArthur Genius Grant”:

http://www.buzzfeed.com/leonoraepstein/what-major-award-should-you-get#.ppPPZjpJP

~~~

 

 

 

Of Possible Interest: Headspace

So, last week I visited my Shrinky Dink (i.e. psychiatrist) and told her of my intention to spend the next year learning how to think in new, better, and more positive ways, chiefly through the aids of meditation and CBT (cognitive behavioral therapy). She was extremely encouraging, and made the suggestion that sometimes meditation can be overwhelming to some people (i.e. like me), so it might be wise to dip one’s toe in the meditation pool and then immerse themselves from there.

One tool she thought might be helpful is a website called Headspace, which helps one ease into the practice of learning how to observe one’s mind and gently focus oneself as a means of taking a break not only from the hubbub of general brain activity but also the hecticness of daily life. I decided to give it a try – and thought perhaps some of you might be interested in it as well.

You can either head directly to the website and sign up there or you can download their app on the device of your choice you prefer. The introductory tools and sessions are free – a very good and preferable price!

I downloaded the app on my phone and am now on Day 6 of their introductory “training course”, which consists of taking 10 minutes out of the day to settle down and listen to Andy the narrator-slash-meditation and mindfulness expert walk you through each day in his delightful and calming voice, complete with British accent, and so far so good. 

Hope your New Year is coming along nicely, and wishing you a Happy Tuesday the 13th! :)

~~~

Create Your Own Miracle – A LifeRing Member’s TED Talk

BJ Davis Ted Talk

 

BJ Davis, Psy.D., a LifeRing member we’ve also had the privilege of presenting as a Keynote Speaker at several LifeRing annual meetings, tells the remarkable and inspiring story of how he went from addicted ex-convict to the free man living a life of his own purposeful choosing he is today in a powerful TED Talk. 

BJ is living proof that belief in oneself makes all the difference in every person’s life – and we’re honored to present his talk to you:

TEDx  Sacramento TED Talk 

BJ is also Co-Executive Director and Clinical Director at Strategies for Change in Sacramento, California. For more information about this organization, please see here:

www.strategies4change.org/

 We thank BJ for being a part of our recovery community and share with him our heartfelt congratulations for the work he’s done to help himself and then to help others help themselves. Thank you, BJ!

Second Edition of “Empowering Your Sober Self” Now Available!

Hey Everyone! We at LifeRing are pleased to announce that a new, Second Edition of “Empowering Your Sober Self” by our co-founder Martin Nicolaus is now available! Please see below for reviews, information about the author, and links to get your own copy:

 

front cover 2nd edition

Empowering Your Sober Self

The LifeRing Approach to Addiction Recovery

Second edition — with a new supplement by the author

The one book to read for an introduction to LifeRing.  Written for the person who wants to get free of alcohol/drugs, for their friends and relations, and for the professionals who treat them.

“A sophisticated, insightful, well-documented view of the philosophy and practice that are at the heart of the LifeRing approach. This book offers a perspective on recovery that can motivate change in clinicians and researchers as well as among individuals struggling to find their sober selves.”
—Carlo DiClemente, Ph.D., professor and chair, Department of Psychology, University of Maryland, Baltimore, and author, Addiction and Change

“With impressive analytical clarity and therapeutic generosity, Nicolaus presents a well-argued brief for understanding the complexities of addiction treatment and accepting the full range of diverse paths to recovery. . . . [Anyone] wanting insight and balance on a vitally important public health issue will appreciate the author’s lively and respectful presentation.”
—Judith Herman, M.D., author, Trauma and Recovery

By Martin Nicolaus, cofounder of LifeRing Secular Recovery. He is an attorney in private practice who lives in Berkeley, California.

Empower Your Sober Self is available exclusively online from  the LifeRing bookstore , or from your local LifeRing meeting.   (You can order it via amazon.com, but because Amazon forwards all orders to us for fulfillment, it’s faster and easier to order from LifeRing directly.)  Click “Add to Bag” to order a copy using your Visa/MasterCard or PayPal account.

Empower Your Sober Self, 277 pp. 9″ x 6″, stay-flat binding. ISBN 978-0-9659429-6-6. Second edition, 2014. US$20.00 + S/H.

 

Many congratulations and, as always, our deepest thanks to Marty! Without you, we’d be nothing! :)