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Friday, September 14, 2018

National Recovery Month: Stopping Stigma, Busting Myths

September is an important month for those of us in the recovery community. This is because it’s National Recovery Month, created by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration (SAMHSA), and it’s a chance to celebrate your recovery and help stop the stigma and harmful myths surrounding addiction and addiction treatment. 

This year’s theme, “Join the Voices for Recovery: Invest in Health, Home, Purpose, and Community,” emphasizes community involvement and how we can all help educate and spread awareness that prevention is possible and treatment works.

Let’s face it: Having the courage to face your addiction and get help takes courage and hard work – and that’s even without having to address common misconceptions like addiction being a character flaw and there being a magic bullet or one-size-fits-all treatment. This is your month to honor your journey and those who have helped you find your way back to a sober, fulfilling life.  

“Each September, tens of thousands of prevention, treatment, and recovery programs and facilities around the country celebrate Recovery Month,” writes the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration (SAMHSA). “They speak about the gains made by those in recovery and share their success stories with their neighbors, friends, and colleagues. In doing so, everyone helps to increase awareness and furthers a greater understanding about the diseases of mental and substance use disorders.”

What will you do this month to join the celebration? You can spread the word via FB, twitter or Instagram. Recoverymonth.gov has banners, flyers, and customizable posters to promote Recovery Month on social media. If you feel comfortable, you can even share your personal recovery story in the hopes of empowering someone else to take that brave step toward sobriety. There may even be a Recovery Month event going on in your area. If attending is not possible, there’s live streaming of some of the more notable events throughout the month.

There’s No Shame in Getting Help
September is your month to begin your recovery and take back your life! At Complete Harmony, we celebrate people in recovery and the professionals and loved ones who have helped make recovery possible.
To learn more about dual-diagnosis or about rehabilitation for yourself or someone you love, call us today: 866-930-4673


Friday, August 24, 2018

How to Make Gratitude Part of Your Daily Recovery

 Being grateful may seem like a piece of cake but in fact it takes practice. By working to incorporate gratitude into your daily life, you’ll boost your immune system, mood, recovery and more. Here are a few ideas to get started:
  • Start a gratitude journal. Each day, jot down three things you’re grateful for – and keep a running list that you can refer to when you feel as if you have no blessings to count.
  • Shift your mindset. You have control of your thoughts, so instead of thinking about what you don’t have, think about what you do have. This isn’t to say that you can’t strive for more, but take time to be thankful for the little treasures found in daily life.
  • Make time for loved ones. Even if it’s a quick phone call, check in with your loved ones and let them lift you up. Talking with or spending time with family and friends who support you and your recovery journey is a surefire way to make you feel grateful.
  • Remain teachable. With gratitude comes self-awareness or the ability to recognize how far you’ve come in your recovery and how much learning you still need to do. We never know it all and being humble and teachable will help you to feel grateful for the chance to learn more about yourself during recovery.
  • Recall tough times. When it feels like you have nothing to be grateful for, think about a bad time in your life and how far you’ve come since then. Embrace these moments to make you grateful for the sober life you’re now living.
  • Volunteer or simply help a fellow recovery peer. When you give rather than receive you become more grateful for what you have. In fact, volunteering has been linked to numerous benefits including decreased depression and increased well being.
  • Meditate. Carve out time daily to sit quietly give thanks to all of the small gifts in life; you can even use the running list from your gratitude journal to help. 
Meditation and More
At Complete Harmony, we encourage the use of many different cutting-edge techniques to help clients heal the mind, body and spirit and cultivate a sense of gratitude, including mediation. To learn more about our treatment center and our approach to addiction recovery, call today: 866-930-4673.






Friday, August 17, 2018

PAWS: What to Expect

You’ve been drug or alcohol free for a month or more and now you’re having trouble sleeping, focusing and remembering things. What’s more, you’re dealing with extreme cravings and feel irritable and anxious. You’re not imagining this. This is pretty common and it’s called PAWS, or post-acute withdrawal syndrome (protracted withdrawal syndrome). 

Like its name implies, PAWS happens after the period of acute withdrawal ceases and your brain attempts to stabilize or re-organize without alcohol and/or drugs. 

Alcohol, benzodiazepines, antidepressants, opioids and stimulants are all known to cause PAWS. The severity and longevity of PAWS depends on how much damage your brain incurred during active addiction as well as your drug of abuse. 

Recognizing the Symptoms
Learning to spot the symptoms of PAWS will help you better prepare and have a plan should these symptoms strike without warning. Here’s a look at some of the most common signs: 
  • Alcohol or drug cravings
  • Difficulty concentrating and making decisions
  • Anxiety
  • Sleep difficulties
  • Problems with short-term memory
  • Persistent fatigue
  • Impaired executive control
  • Anhedonia (the inability to feel pleasure from anything beyond use of the drug)
  • Dysphoria or depression
  • Irritability
  • Unexplained physical complaints
  • Reduced interest in sex 
How to Cope With PAWS
In addition to working with your addiction specialist, there are several steps you can take to help minimize the symptoms of PAWS. 
  • Stay active: A regular exercise routine can help restore balance to the brain and ease a lot of the emotional turbulence of PAWS. 
  • Recognize and record triggers: Make an effort to notice the people, places, events or situations that seem to worsen your PAWS symptoms – and keep an ongoing list that you can share with your addiction counselor. 
  • Don’t struggle alone: Successful recovery hinges on support. You don’t have to cope with PAWS alone; share what you’re experiencing with your addiction counselors, peers or loved ones. 
  • Be patient with the process: Your mind and body need time to fully recover. Do your best to stay calm and focus on your recovery tasks as well as all of the positive things ahead in your new sober life. 
Comfortable Detox at Complete Harmony
Our team can help you or someone you love detox and restore your whole body using holistic therapies for symptom management and improved well being. To learn more about our alternative rehab program and natural detox methods, call today: 866-930-4673.




Friday, August 10, 2018

The Link Between Self-Esteem & Recovery

Many people in addiction recovery struggle with self-esteem, or confidence in your worth and abilities. And, in fact, low self-esteem may have played a role in your addiction in the first place. 

Learning to rebuild your self-esteem is essential for your long-term sobriety and your overall mental health. This is because full recovery requires that you value yourself enough that you dont risk relapse. It also requires satisfaction with your new sober life, which is difficult to achieve when youre struggling with low self-esteem. 

How You Can Improve Your Self-Esteem
A big part of improving your self-esteem is self-awareness. Learning about yourself and being more mindful about how you treat yourself as well as how others treat you can help set the foundation for healthy self-esteem. 

Self-care and negative self-talk also play a role in self-esteem. Remind yourself that you deserve to be healthy – mind, body and spirit. To do so, youll need to participate fully in your recovery, eat well, stay active, sleep, practice stress management and engage in activities that make you feel alive and fulfilled. 

You also deserve to be treated well – and this includes making a bigger effort to treat yourself with kindness and compassion. Make a big effort to stop negative self-talk. For example, the next time you find yourself beating yourself up over something you did or did not do, stop and think of something more positive. 

Learning to change your mindset and learn from (not dwell) on mistakes is an important process for a successful recovery and healthy self-esteem. 

Building Self-Esteem at Complete Harmony
We offer our clients a variety of holistic and alternative therapies that will help you or someone you love improve your self-esteem and boost your chance at lasting sobriety. For more information about our cutting edge treatments, call today: 866-930-4673.

Friday, August 3, 2018

How to Get Out of a Recovery Rut

We all have good and bad days and we all get into ruts once in awhile. While this is completely normal, it’s also risky to your recovery if you get stuck in a rut. Here are some tips to help you pick yourself up and push through.
  • Show yourself compassion. Beating yourself up is never the answer. Especially during recovery when you’re fragile, it’s important to show yourself kindness and view any bumps in the road as learning experiences. 
  • Reengage in your recovery. Ask yourself: What have you done today to help your recovery? For example, did you meet with your therapist, write in a journal, meditate or attend a support group? Making sure you complete your recovery task on a daily basis can help keep you out of a rut.
  • Practice self-care. Whether you carve out quiet time to pray or meditate or just go for a brisk walk in nature, taking 10 minutes to mind your wellbeing will help keep you inspired and motivated.
  • Be more mindful. Without judgment, consider any feelings that could be causing your rut. Try writing them down in a journal and then putting it aside. This exercise can help you move past any emotional roadblocks that may be in your way. 
  • Avoid comparisons. No one’s recovery is the same and so don’t get caught up in comparing your progress with someone else’s. This can just foster negative feelings and unrealistic expectations. The result: a rut!
  • Remember, you’re not alone. Again, we all get into ruts now and again. Do your best to stay positive, seek support and push on through.
Staying Inspired at Complete Harmony
At Complete Harmony, we provide the tools you or someone you love needs to endure the ups and downs of recovery. To learn more about our cutting edge treatments, call us today: 866-930-4673.


Friday, July 20, 2018

Tips for Creating a Balanced Life in Recovery

balanced life
Part of learning to live a sober life is learning to live a balanced life. And this means finding time for happiness, goals and overall health amid the mundane and stress of everyday life. Here are some tips to get you started: 
  • Practice good time management. Learning to manage your time is crucial for a healthy life balance. This means being vigilant about staying organized, prioritizing to-do lists, learning to say “no” and asking for help when you need it. 
  • Prioritize your health. Taking the time to strengthen your mind and body will make you more resilient and better able to stay strong and grounded. This means scheduling in sleep, exercise, relaxation and healthful meals.
  • Plan ahead. It’s import to keep your goals top of mind without letting them overwhelm you or make you feel like a failure. Start the week by jotting down one goal and one way you can work toward meeting that goal. It can be a small step. 
  • Don’t forget the pleasures of life. Spend time with loved ones and friends who lift your spirits or make you laugh. Make time for nature and play and hobbies that excite you. 
  • Be a life learner. Now that you’re sober, you have the opportunity to build an exciting and liberating life without the crutches of drugs or alcohol. Each day is a brand-new opportunity to learn something new or experience something amazing for the first time through a sober lens.
  • Remember to breath. Learning to incorporate mindful breathing techniques into your life will ensure that you have a healthy go-to for controlling stress and easing tension. 
Begin SMART Recovery® at Complete Harmony
Living a balanced life is part of the SMART Recovery® 4-point recovery program. 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, July 13, 2018

Are You at Risk of a Cross Addiction?

cross addiction
A cross addiction, or when someone moves from one addiction to another, is pretty common for people in recovery from a substance use disorder. In fact, this tendency is partly why addiction is viewed as a chronic, relapsing condition. In the case of a cross addiction, the relapse is with a new drug of choice – whether an addictive substance or behavior. 

Cross addictions come in various forms and people can become dependent on almost anything that causes dopamine activation in the brain. For example, someone can go from marijuana to painkiller addiction; drinking to food addiction; cocaine to gambling addiction; or sex to exercise addiction – or any combination. Falling back into old patterns with a new substance and/or behavior – even if the behavior seems “less dangerous” – is still risky business. This is because the brain is still engaging in addictive behavior and not getting the time it needs to heal. 

Men typically outnumber women in sex and gambling addictions. Eating disorders and exercise addiction are common cross addiction for many women – using exercise, food or starvation to replace the high of drugs and/or alcohol. It’s also common for cross addiction to go unnoticed until it's become a big problem – and it can happen during any point of recovery.  

Staying mindful of any compulsive thoughts and behaviors and seeking support from counselors, recovery peers and trusted loved ones can help. And so can recognizing some of the warning signs, including:  
  • Tolerance: Do you need more and more to get the same “buzz?”
  • Withdrawal: Are you experiencing symptoms like anxiety, irritability, restlessness and sleep trouble if you try to cut back or stop the substance or behavior?
  • Continuance: Are you continuing in spite of negative consequences, including missed responsibilities, interpersonal problems and physical and mental health issues?
  • Lack of control: Have you tried and failed to stop or cut back? 
  • Reduction in other activities: Are you avoiding friends and family or skipping favorite hobbies in favor of the substance and/or behavior? 
  • Time: Are you spending a great deal of time thinking about, planning for and recovering from the substance and/or behavior?
Relapse Prevention at Complete Harmony
Relapse prevention is key for long-term recovery – and we're here to help. At Complete Harmony, our holistic treatment and relapse prevention plans provide a firm foundation for lifelong sobriety. To learn more, call: 866-930-4673. 


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