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Friday, December 8, 2017

Why You Should Embrace Being Uncomfortable

We likely don’t have to tell you that the recovery process is far from an easy journey. It’s a challenge and you ‘ll likely feel uncomfortable along the way – from detox, or talking about your history of addiction to a counselor, or trying a new holistic treatment, or making amends or socializing without the crutch of drugs or alcohol. 

Whatever the cause, learning to be comfortable with the uncomfortable parts of recovery is a crucial step toward successfully living clean and healthy. Think about it. If everything came easy, if you were never challenged, if you only remained in your comfort zone, you likely wouldn’t even be in rehab today. You can’t grow and improve without being a little uncomfortable.

In fact, millions of successful people – inside and out of the recovery community – swear by this strategy to successfully achieve their goals. The first step: just show up. 

That’s right. Just by seeking help for your addiction, you’re already beginning to learn. It’s never comfortable or easy to start something new and you may even reach a point when you want to quit. Don’t. This is the time to push yourself past your comfort zone and remind yourself that you’re committed to your recovery and there’s no turning back.

But how do you do this? Some experts say to “fake it to you make it.” In other words, you might be thinking to yourself “I can’t do this.” “I don’t know what I’m doing.” “I’ve never done this before.”

Here’s where you can teach yourself to fake confidence. Try a little positive self-talk: “I can do this.” “I'm a quick study.” “I’ll get the hang of this in no time.”

This is also when your support network really counts. Share your uncomfortable stories with your recovery peers, friends and family. Talking about these experiences with others will help put things in perspective and you’ll likely learn some new strategies for being more comfortable in these situations, too.

And, above all, remind yourself that recovery takes time and confidence comes from practice. Each time you push yourself beyond your comfort zone, you’re one step closer to overcoming the challenges of lasting sobriety. 

Holistic Addiction Treatment by the Sea
Located at our beautiful beach community retreat in Southern California, Complete Harmony serves individuals seeking an alternative to conventional drug and alcohol recovery. To begin your journey toward mindful empowerment, call today: 866-930-4673.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Tips to Stay in the Present

In today’s busy world, it’s all too easy to get distracted from the present and what’s truly important – namely, your recovery. And while it’s pretty easy to be mindful for a few moments, it takes discipline to bring mindfulness into your every day. 

Luckily, a little training can help you build your mindfulness muscle. And once you develop the skill, you can make it a regular part of your daily journey toward sobriety. 

Here are few tips to help you stay in the present: 

Get familiar with your negative feelings. A big part of mindfulness is paying close attention to your thoughts and feelings without judging or trying to fix them. Take time to think about the feelings that tend to cloud your thinking and distract you from the present moment. You may even consider jotting them down so you can refer to the list as a reminder. For example, a few common recovery emotions you may be struggling with include:  
  • Anxiety
  • Regret
  • Guilt
  • Fear
  • Loneliness
Question your thoughts constantly. You’ll need to flex your mindfulness muscle daily to keep it strong, so this means making an effort to always question (and then let go of) any negative thoughts – especially the ones that get in the way of a healthy recovery. 

Count your breaths. The simple act of focusing on your breath will help you focus on staying in the present. The next time you feel distracted, give it a try: Close your eyes and take a deep breath in for the count of four. Now,  exhale slowly for a count of four. 

Create visual reminders. Whether you tie a string around your finger, wear an elastic around your wrist or hang a few post-it notes in everyday places, visual reminders will help you snap back into the present moment. 

Finding Holistic Treatment for You
At Complete Harmony, we encourage the use of many different cutting-edge techniques to help clients heal the mind, body and spirit, including acupuncture, yoga, mediation, massage therapy, and others. To learn more about our treatment center and our approach to addiction recovery, call today: 866-930-4673.

Friday, November 17, 2017

What You Should Look for In Recovery Friends

Forming the right friendships is an important step in your recovery. Your new sober life should be fulfilling, and sober friends can help make that so by providing support, connection, and fun. 

Having sober friends is also an integral part of your emotional health and reintegration into society. Making friends will teach you to relate to others without the crutch of alcohol or drugs. 

On the flip side, hanging out with the wrong peers can threaten your hard-won sobriety. Especially during early recovery, you might need a little help deciphering healthy from unhealthy relationships. 

Positive Friend Qualities
Any new friend should be supportive of your sobriety and share similar goals and values. This will help ensure that you stick to healthy habits and stay motivated to reach your recovery goals and follow your sober dreams. Other positive qualities to look for in a new sober friend include:
  • Honesty and trustworthiness
  • Kindness
  • Compassion
  • Self-awareness
  • Dependability
  • Non-judgmental
  • Good listening skills
  • Strong understanding of personal boundaries
  • Healthy sense of humor
  • Supportive and encouraging
  • Able to express emotions and feelings in an honest and direct way
Friendship Red flags
In addition to looking for positive qualities and personality traits, it’s also helpful to ask yourself the following questions while getting to know a new friend: 
  • Is this person reliable or dependable?
  • Do I feel better or worse when I’m with this person?
  • Does this person make me feel insecure?
  • Do I feel controlled or manipulated in any way?
  • Is this person jealous or possessive?
  • Do I have any concerns about this relationship?
Relapse Prevention at Complete Harmony
From identifying high-risk relationships to learning mindfulness techniques that center you, our relapse prevention and aftercare planning will empower you and slowly eliminate the dangerous urge to self-medicate. To learn more, call today: 866-930-4673.

Friday, November 10, 2017

Healthy Activities for Fall

Fall is filled with an abundance of healthy activities that suit the season and your recovery goals. Here are a few ways to take advantage of the many ways autumn can strengthen your body and mind as you work hard this season to get (and stay) sober.  
  • Rake some leaves. This fall chore happens to be a great workout. For added fun and calorie burn: Jump in the piles a few times or recruit some friends and have relays around bagging the leaves. 
  • Cook up some healthy fall treats. Roast some fall veggies like Brussels sprouts and sweet potatoes or whip up a light butternut squash soup. For a healthful dessert, pop some apples in the oven and sprinkle with some cinnamon. 
  • Go for a long hike. Time spent with Mother Nature has been study-proven to calm activity in a part of the brain linked to mental illness and reduce your mind’s propensity to “ruminate” — or focus on negative, self-focused patterns linked with anxiety and depression.
  • Play a pick-up game. The benefits of playing flag football or soccer with a group of friends or recovery peers are double-duty: You’ll get in a good workout and socialize. 
  • Make time to volunteer. There’s nothing like cooler temperatures to remind you about the importance of helping others who lack hot food and a warm place to sleep. Volunteer at a nearby shelter or participate in a coat drive -- any good deed to give back and remind you to be grateful for what you have. 
Tis the Season for Recovery
If you or a loved one is searching for an addiction treatment program that blends conventional and alternative strategies for healing, our team can help. Nurturing mind, body, and spirit, we provide a continuum of treatment for residents and outpatients. Call Complete Harmony today: 866-930-4673.

Friday, November 3, 2017

The Stages of Change

Successful addiction recovery requires change – a change in your mindset, behaviors, actions, feelings, goals, relationship with yourself and others – and you’ll experience these changes in different stages. 

Most successful self-changers go through the stages three or four times before they make it through the cycle of change without at least one slip, according to the experts at SMART Recovery®, who describes the stages of change as follows: 
  • Precontemplation Stage: People in the pre-contemplation stage of change usually show up in therapy because of pressures from family, friends, employers, or courts.  They tend change the topic of conversation when others address their problem and place blame and responsibility on factors like genetics, family, society, destiny, the police, etc. 
  • Contemplation Stage: Contemplators may feel like “I want to stop feeling so stuck!” In other words, they have come to acknowledge that they have a problem but struggle to understand its causes and wonder about possible solutions. People in this stage may be researching addiction and treatment.
  • Preparation Stage: Most people in the preparation stage are planning to take action and are likely making final adjustments before they take action to change their behavior. Still, individuals in this stage may need a little convincing. 
  • Action Stage: This stage requires the greatest commitment of time and energy. During this stage, people overtly modify their behavior and their surroundings and change becomes more visible to others.
  • Maintenance Stage: This stage helps to prevent relapse or return to the precontemplation or contemplation stage. After all, change never ends with action, notes the experts at SMART Recovery®.

Begin SMART Recovery® at Complete Harmony
SMART Recovery® is ideal for men and women seeking an alternative to the 12-step approach to addiction treatment. At Complete Harmony, our team will help you determine whether this type of addiction recovery program is right for you. To learn more, call today: 866-930-4673.

Friday, October 27, 2017

Link Between Addiction and Perfectionism

While living a life of addiction is far from perfect, there’s a strong link between perfectionism and addiction. For many, perfectionism may have even played a role in drinking or drug use in the first place. 

For instance, you may have notoriously set unattainable goals for yourself and turned to drugs or alcohol to mask feelings of failure or self-criticism. Or, you may have used these substances to simply escape or take yourself out of your perfectionism. 

Perfectionism, defined as a propensity for being displeased with anything that’s not perfect or does not meet extremely high standards, can certainly take a toll on your psyche. People who are so-called perfectionists typically share the following character traits: 
  • Have an inner need to strive for flawlessness.
  • Set excessively high performance standards for themselves.
  • Act overly critical of their performance on tasks.
  • Are concerned about the appraisals of other people.

For those in recovery, perfectionism can also prevent you from getting proper treatment and/or doing the hard work required of life-long sobriety. Heres a look why: 
  • Perfectionists may think they play by different rules than others, so for example, they dont need help or they can handle just one drink.
  • Perfectionists expect to get it right the first time around. This leaves little room for the learning process of rehab and can easily lead to impatience with the recovery process. What’s more, this type of thinking can make it that much harder to recover from any slip-ups along the way. 
  • Perfectionists are just as tough on others as they are on themselves. The result: isolation loneliness and mistrust. 

Help for Perfectionism and Addiction
Dont let perfectionism get in the way of your lasting sobriety. At Complete Harmony, it’s our goal to provide clients with the tools and strategies needed for early recovery and beyond. To learn more about our cutting edge treatmentscall today: 866-930-4673.

Friday, October 20, 2017

Learning to Say No to Stay Sober

A big part of staying sober is learning how to say no – no to drugs, no to just one drink, no to that date with a person you know isn’t right for you, no to that party that might serve as a trigger – and the list can go on and on. You might also need to exercise the power of no when it comes to work, family and social commitments – so you don’t burnout or overtax yourself.

We’ve talked in the past about the power of saying “no.” To recap: It can help you to identify what brings you joy and relaxation and what causes stress and drains your reserves during recovery. It can help you choose your friends and supports and, perhaps most importantly, it can help you focus on your recovery.

Saying no doesn’t mean that you're being rude, selfish, or unkind – but it does mean that you’re choosing to put yourself and recovery first. And, right now, that’s an important goal for sobriety. 

Hints for Saying No
Tiny recently published an article with some helpful hints for saying “no” – here we take a look at some of their best tips: 
  • Be direct but polite. For example, say: “No, I can’t. But thanks for asking.” 
  • Don’t feel the need to apologize or give multiple excuses.
  • Don’t lie. Lying is never encouraged and it can lead to guilt.
  • Remember this: It’s better to say no now than to feel resentful later.
  • Practice saying no. Imagine a scenario and then practice saying no either by yourself or with a friend. 
  • Remind yourself that your self-worth does not depend on how much you do for other people.
And, it’s worth repeating, now is the time to focus on your health, recovery and lasting sobriety.

Relapse Prevention at Complete Harmony
From identifying high-risk situations to learning mindfulness techniques that center you, our relapse prevention and aftercare planning will empower you and slowly eliminate the dangerous urge to self-medicate. Call today: 866-930-4673.

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