Keep doing it

Remeber what we read before from SAMHSA:

“Recovery is a process of change whereby individuals work to improve their own health and wellness and to live a meaningful life in a community of their choice while striving to achieve their full potential.”

This is a process. You need a support network, either from your friends and family, co-workers, buddies (not the drinking buddies), or from a rehab center.

You can do it alone but it is way harder. Do it with some help and you are going to enjoy the feeling when they say “You done good!”

Start doing it

Get off your butt man, this won’t get better without your involvement.

If you need to go to sessions GO

If you need someone to talk to CALL

Your goal is to get to the recovery stage. Ah, I hear you ask, how will I know if I am recovered?

In 2005, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) offered the following Working Definition of Recovery:

“Recovery from alcohol and drug problems is a process of change through which an individual achieves abstinence and improved health, wellness and quality of life.”

Expanding on this definition, SAMHSA articulated twelve “Guiding Principles of Recovery”:

  • There are many pathways to recovery.
  • Recovery is self-directed and empowering.
  • Recovery involves a personal recognition of the need for change and transformation.
  • Recovery is holistic.
  • Recovery has cultural dimensions.
  • Recovery exists on a continuum of improved health and wellness.
  • Recovery is supported by peers and allies.
  • Recovery emerges from hope and gratitude.
  • Recovery involves a process of healing and self-redefinition.
  • Recovery involves addressing discrimination and transcending shame and stigma.
  • Recovery involves (re)joining and (re)building a life in the community.
  • Recovery is a reality. It can, will, and does happen.

SAMHSA Working Definition of Recovery:

“Recovery is a process of change whereby individuals work to improve their own health and wellness and to live a meaningful life in a community of their choice while striving to achieve their full potential.”

SAMHSA Principles of Recovery

  • Person-driven;

  • Occurs via many pathways;

  • Is holistic;

  • Is supported by peers;

  • Is supported through relationships;

  • Is culturally-based and influenced;

  • Is supported by addressing trauma;

  • Involves individual, family, and community strengths and responsibility;

  • Is based on respect; and

  • Emerges from hope.

What can you do

Well, what about getting help?

Getting help can be as easy as going to AA – their program works. If you don’t want to do that let’s open a new tab and do a search. I am based in Texas so I search for substance abuse and I get hundreds of results. This substance abuse help program is local, they take insurance (mine included) and they have a phone number and email contact. I’m all set. Now you try the same.

Or you can travel to another location, perhaps, that way you can try to break out of your addiction cycle. From Texas you could go to any place nearby, or since Texas is a big state, what about another city?

Maybe you want to do it on your own. You can model your program on the AA program – we know it works – and that way you will feel like you own it

Whatever you do, don’t try to cop out. Don’t blame someone else for your issues, you are the only one who is in control of your life. It isn’t about your childhood, or being out of work, you don’t need a shrink – you need to ‘fess up that this is your problem, own it – FIX IT

Admit there is an issue


Let’s admit there is an issue – Are you addicted to alcohol? Are you addicted to drugs? Both?
If you’re not sure let’s try an easy test. Click here for the NCADD (they are a reputable not-for-profit organization) drug addiction self-test – try this link for their alcoholism test.

If you aren’t comfortable taking the tests, try reading the questions and imagine your answers. Or you can read this information on wikipedia about alcoholism, this one about drug addiction, and this one about addictions in general.

Think about what you are reading very carefully. Do you match up to the questions or the descriptions, Have you lost friends or neglected your family? Have you been in trouble at work? Have you been arrested or done anything illegal?

If you have, let’s go on to the next step – if not you either are in denial, aren’t addicted (and why are you here?) or maybe you have just been lucky up until now.

Take Control

Your life is a disaster, you’re addicted to drugs, you pop pills, you drink too much. Whatever.

Now – let’s get it under control.

Here’s what I think are the steps

  1. Admit there is an issue
  2. Figure out what you can do – you, not somebody else!
  3. Start doing it
  4. Keep doing it until you are clean

So let’s get started doing some of this