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What to do when you want to get loved ones on board with your sobriety

How To Get Others On Board With Your Sobriety

You’ve finally done it. After months (years?) of going back and forth with yourself about your drinking habits, self-reflecting, devouring recovery memoirs and self-help books, and secretly joining Facebook groups for sober people, you’ve decided to change your life. You’re going to quit drinking. 

Congratulations! You got this, and on those days when you don’t, there is an entire virtual community of folks in the exact same boat who will support you and keep you on track.

But what about the people in your real life? The ones who call you to go to the bar every Saturday or your significant other who owns half the bottles in that liquor cabinet in your living room? Or what about your work boo who likes to bring over a bottle of rosé and dish about all the people you can’t stand at the office? How are you going to tell them that you’re not drinking anymore?

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why you should be careful of addiction transferrence

The Big Mistake You Should Avoid When Getting Sober

Over the past few months, I’ve been struggling to piece together what in the world is happening with me and soda, in particular, diet sodas. When I quit drinking alcohol in December 2016, I realized that I was consuming way more soda and sugary foods than I had before. I was told that it’s normal, that lots of people “switch” to sugar when they stop drinking. Switch?

I’ve been thinking a lot about that word.  If I’ve switched, that means I’ve taken one thing and replaced it with another. In this case, that thing is drinking copious amounts of alcohol (not great) with drinking copious amounts of diet soda (also not great). It was my last remaining vice and I desperately wanted it. But it also indicated that I hadn’t done a single thing to heal whatever drove me to drink too much in the first place.

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World Mental Health Day 2018

It’s #WorldMentalHealthDay! So many of us suffer from mental health issues. It’s important that we devote time and resources to understanding mental health, eliminating the stigma associated with it, and work to improve the overall quality of life for anyone who is suffering.

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Why we need to talk about social media addiction and our use of technology

Social Media Addiction and How We Waste Our Lives A Little Each Day

I recently sat down to read a fabulous article in The Atlantic profiling a guy named Tristan Harris who is making it his life’s work to design and encourage other companies to design more ethical software that will help break the increasingly vicious cycle of technology addiction in our lives. The article caught my eye because I’ve been feeling increasingly bothered by the amount of time I spend reaching for my phone, getting lost in the abyss, wasting hours of time perusing through social media, usually mindlessly. I’ve come close to installing phone use apps like BreakFree or Moment to see just how bad I’ve gotten, but I have yet to bring myself to do it because I know it will not be good news and I’m not sure I’m ready to commit to another major life overhaul. That’s ridiculous fear-talk right there, folks.

Can you imagine for a moment? I know I have a problem, that I am on my phone way too much and it eats away at my energy for other, clearly more productive tasks. I catch myself grabbing the phone for no reason other than pure instinct and habit. I’ve read books and articles from very intelligent people waving red flags in my face imploring me to wake up and get a grip on my screen time. It’s become such an epidemic that they are creating apps for our phones now to save us from ourselves (and our phones). Yet, I don’t take that next big step to use an app that will lock my social media apps if I spend too much time on them because I’m not 100% ready to face down this demon. Sound familiar?

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The longterm effects of alcohol on the brain and what you can do to reverse it

How Alcohol Ruins Your Brain (And Why There’s Still Hope)

I’m now reaching the five-month mark in my sobriety (and, EEK, pregnancy) and there is one benefit that I am luxuriating in right now: reclaiming my formerly pickled brain.

Even in the thick of pregnancy brain fog, I still find myself in awe of just how much room there is inside this dome that had been previously clouded by a booze, hangover, anxiety cocktail. Towards the end of my drinking days, I noticed that I had difficulty thinking clearly. I was no longer able to tap into my “zone” and produce interesting content when I sat down to write (which was almost never at that point), nor did I possess any motivation to try. I no longer got lost inside complex thoughts. In fact, I was actually starting to forget things regularly. I would have to write everything down because I was incapable of remembering something in the short term for longer than a few minutes. We often laugh about moments when we walk into a room and have no idea why we came in there, but that was becoming my normal. It didn’t scare me necessarily, at least, not as much as it should have. Instead, it just made me more depressed. Whoever “I” was, whatever construct of self I held previously, was slowly vanishing.

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What it really takes to change

What Most Self-Help Gurus Get Wrong About Big Changes

Change is hard. Like, real earth-moving, deep down in your bones change is hard. That should seem like an obvious statement, but for me, for years, it really wasn’t. I was being flanked on all sides by industry professionals telling me that change was easy. I just had to genuinely want it. If I devoted all my mental energy to wanting this change, the Universe was going to intervene and say, “I got you, girlfriend!” and all was going to be right. If it wasn’t, it was my fault for not wanting it badly enough.

I once read a book where the author told me us that she was battling alcohol and cocaine addiction, a real party chick, and was wrecking her life. Then one fateful day she woke up and heard a voice say, “if you get clean, you’ll have everything you ever dreamed of” and that was it for her. She got clean that very day and everything (seemingly) was sunshine and rainbows from then on (at least on the not using front).

I don’t know about you, but no such voice ever intervened in my life. No magical switch ever flipped in my brain and made all my pain and struggles go away.

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