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Friday, September 29, 2017

Lowering Stress to Fight Relapse

Many addiction experts cite stress as the leading cause of relapse. Think about it: The more stress you’re under, the more likely you’ll feel the desire to escape by turning to drugs or alcohol. It makes sense then that learning new, healthy ways to handle stress is a crucial part of your long-term recovery plan. 

So you can’t escape stress, but you can learn your individual triggers as well as how to take steps to lower stress and stay calm. These tips can help you get started:  
  • Practice self-care. Caring for your body by getting rest, exercising, and eating properly, is an often-overlooked way to manage stress. Getting regular exercise, for instance, can increase mood-boosting endorphins and eating a proper diet can keep your body strong so you’re better equipped to handle stress. Self-care also means minding your mental health. Take time to distress and quiet your mind by practicing relaxation techniques like meditation or deep breathing – and seek help for any emotional issues that are interfering with day-to-day living.
  • Surround yourself with positive people. During recovery, it’s okay – even encouraged – to be picky about who you spend your time with. Positive, healthy people will help boost your mood and strengthen your resolve against stress.  
  • Work on your communicate skills. Whether you’re dealing with a store clerk or close family member, learning to communicate your needs (and listen to theirs) will help prevent conflict and eliminate unnecessary irritations caused by miscommunication. 
  • Take “me” time. It’s okay to take a break from the daily stressors of life and focus on you. Part of your recovery plan should include sober fun, creativity and/or any stress-lowering activity that can serve as a healthy escape. A few ideas: exercise, playing music, coloring, cooking, reading.
Relapse Prevention at Complete Harmony
Personal growth and 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. 

Friday, September 22, 2017

Recognizing Small Victories in Recovery

Did you go out to dinner with friends and order water? Did you take a different route to avoid a bar you used to frequent? Did you take time to journal or meditate today? Did you get out of bed on a bad day? Whether you’ve been in recovery for one day, one week or one year, all of these seemingly small victories add up.  

Addiction recovery takes work, persistence, continual learning and motivation – and celebrating your successes (no matter how small) along the way can empower you to keep the positive momentum going. Of course, your first step is to acknowledge your progress. Keeping a journey is a great way to track your recovery wins. Then, how you celebrate your victories is up to you! Just be sure that you do so in a healthy and sober way. 

Here are a few ideas: 
  • Write down small wins on a piece of paper and drop them in a mason jar. This way you can revisit these victories anytime you need motivation or encouragement. 
  • Keep a recovery win journal and writing down daily wins that have helped with your recovery.
  • Give yourself the gift of time. Allow yourself an hour to focus on something you always put off, without feeling guilty. 
  • Pack a picnic and head to the park or go for a long hike.
  • Pamper yourself. Take a bubble bath or give yourself a facial.
  • Arrange a movie night or afternoon in the park with someone who has supported you and your recovery.
  • Try a new hobby, like learning to play an instrument or taking art classes.
  • Visit a new place.
  • Join a local recovery event.
  • Give back to your recovery community by volunteering or simply sharing your story with others.
Begin SMART Recovery at Complete Harmony
An effective alternative to 12-step programs, SMART Recovery® teaches self-empowering addiction recovery. Clients learn to make self-directed change in order to replace destructive decisions with healthy ones. To learn more, call today: 866-930-4673.

Friday, September 15, 2017

5 Emotions to Expect During Recovery

Recovery can be a roller coaster of emotions, especially during the early stages when you’re likely wrestling with feelings that have been kept away for years during active addiction. While a bit of emotional turbulence is perfectly normal, it can also be very dangerous to your lasting sobriety as well as to your physical, emotional and spiritual health. This is especially true if you don’t learn to find healthy coping mechanisms to manage these pesky feelings.

But before you take control, you need to know what you’re feeling and why. Here, we take a look at some of the most common emotions experienced by those in recovery. 
  • Anger: This is one of the most powerful and potentially self-destructive emotions of recovery. Some experts define depression as anger turned inward. This is because anytime we’re angry or feeling anger, there’s typically hurt behind that anger. 
  • Fear: Recovery and getting sober is scary. There’s likely a lot of unknowns and a lack of self-confidence that can cause a fear of failure. If left unchecked, fear can easily prevent you from your well-intentioned recovery plans. 
  • Shame and Guilt: Feeling guilty or shameful for a past behavior or action during active addiction is pretty natural and healthy. Excessive guilt, however, or constantly beating yourself up can lead to negative self-talk and low self-esteem and hold you back from recovery. 
  • Loneliness: Loneliness may have triggered your drug or alcohol use and it’s an emotion that can stick with you long after recovery. Most people describe the loneliness experienced during recovery as feeling alone, misunderstood, and uncared for – and this can even happen while loved ones are there to support you. 
  • Stress and Anxiety: It’s all too common to experience what feels like insurmountable anxiety or stress during early recovery. Your life is about to drastically change (for the good) and that can cause a very real sense of loss and worry. If your anxiety doesn’t eventually pass, however, you may be struggling with an anxiety disorder.

Rehab & Dual Diagnosis Treatment
Many individuals in recovery from addiction also deal with a co-occurring mental health condition. Using traditional and holistic therapies, we have a proven history of successfully addressing the secondary health challenges that complicate substance abuse. To learn more about our dual diagnosis treatment, call today: 866-930-4673.

Friday, September 8, 2017

National Recovery Month: Get Involved

September is National Recovery Month and there are a number of ways that you can get involved – and, why not, the goal is to celebrate those who are recovering and embracing a new, healthy sober life. Just like you!   

Recovery Month began in 1989 as Treatment Works! Month, which honored the work of substance use treatment professionals in the field. The observance evolved into National Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month in 1998, celebrating the accomplishment of individuals in recovery from substance use disorders. In 2011, Recovery Month included all aspects of behavioral health.

Today, more than 200 different organizations host recovery events every September. This year’s theme, “Join the Voices for Recovery: Strengthen Families and Communities,” highlights the value of family and community support throughout recovery and invites individuals in recovery as well as their family members to share their stories and successes to encourage others. 

Here's how you can get involved: 
  • Find a local in-person or online event. keeps a running list of events that take place around the country. You can visit the site to find an event near you, or you can organize your own event and add it to the list to get more exposure. Recovery Month activities range from a “proclamation signing” to a walk, run or rally to cookouts and picnics. There are a variety of online activities, too, including webinars, online chats and live Tweeting. 
  • Promote it on social media. Post your recovery date on social media or update your Facebook photo to represent something you’re proud of because of recovery. You can also use the Recovery Month tools, graphics and resources designed to help anyone spread the positive message that behavioral health is essential to overall health, that prevention works, treatment is effective and people can and do recover.
  • Give hope to others by sharing your story. Simply talking about your recovery to a family member, friend, neighbor or coworker is perhaps the best thing you can do to spread awareness. You can also share your story on under the “Voices for Recovery” section. Another idea: Create a blog. Writing about your recovery experience will be therapeutic for you and may just help someone else to imagine themselves in recovery.

Celebrate With Complete Harmony
National Recovery Month is a positive way to celebrate the importance of recovery. It can also serve as a wake up call for you or someone you love, so reach out to us today if you need addiction help. To learn about our cutting edge addiction treatments, call: 866-930-4673.

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