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fiona
03-17-2012, 06:19 PM
Hi All,

There are so many wonderful books and authors frequently mentioned on all the threads, I thought it might be nice to have one place to post them all. Here are a few that might be of interest:

Karen Casey - She is a recovering addict and has a number of books focusing on changing the way you look at things

Marya Hornbacher - "Waiting, a Non-believers Higher Power"

Jane Nelson - "Positive Discipline for Parents in Recovery", It follows the ideas in the "Positive Discipline" approach to parenting, but takes into consideration the effect recovery has on the family

John Gordon - His books are great for the "What Next" aspects of recovery. They are quick to read stories that he uses for a lot of corporate training. I actually heard of him this fall watching football. The 2010 season for the Georgia Bulldogs was awful. Mark Richt, the coach, met with Mike Smith the coach of the Atlanta Falcons during the NFL lockout. Coach Smith gave him Gordon's book "The Energy Bus". Richt liked it so much he had the whole team read it and applied the principles to their season. 2011 they went to the SEC Championship. I figured anything that could turn a whole team around was worth a read.

Look forward to seeing everyone's favorites!

Midwest Sue
03-18-2012, 08:03 AM
Sober for Good by Anne Fletcher.
"New Solutions for Drinking Problems - Advice from Those Who Have Succeeded"

nomoredayones
03-18-2012, 02:51 PM
Great thread!

1) Turnabout: New Help for the Woman Alcoholic by Jean Kirkpatrick (I have read this book a number of times. She was the founder of "Women For Sobriety")
2) Dry by Augusten Burroughs
3) Lit by Mary Carr
4) Note Found in a Bottle: My Life As a Drinker by Susan Cheever

JeffR1
03-20-2012, 03:46 AM
An excellent thread Fiona; thank you. I have a range of books I have read over the years which I can recommend. Rather than write out what I think each book is about I have extracted a description of the book from an internet book site. That said, I will only post those books which I have found to be useful to me in some way. I should further add that the books won't necessarily relate directly to the topic of addiction, but I think you may find - like I have - that addiction often has underlying causes and I believe it is necessary to treat those underlying issues in order to achieve lasting sobriety.


Excuses Begone!

by Dr Wayne W. Dyer

"Within the pages of this transformational book, Dr. Wayne W. Dyer reveals how to change the self-defeating thinking patterns that have prevented you from living at the highest levels of success, happiness, and health. Even though you may know "what "to think, actually" changing "those thinking habits that have been with you since childhood might be somewhat challenging."If I changed, it would create family dramas . . . I'm too old or too young . . . I'm far too busy and tired . . . I can't afford the things I truly want . . . It would be very difficult for me to do things differently . . . "and" I've always been this way . . . "may all seem to be true, but they're in fact just excuses. So the business of modifying habituated thinking patterns really comes down to tossing out the same tired old excuses and examining your beliefs in a new and truthful light.In this groundbreaking work, Wayne presents a compendium of conscious and subconscious crutches employed by virtually everyone, along with ways to cast them aside once and for all. You'll learn to apply specific questions to any excuse, and then proceed through the steps of a new""paradigm. The old, habituated ways of thinking will melt away as you experience the absurdity of hanging on to them.You'll ultimately realize that there are no excuses worth defending, ever, even if they've always been part of your life--and the joy of releasing them will resonate throughout your very being. When you eliminate the need to explain your shortcomings or failures, you'll awaken to the life of your dreams. "Excuses . . . Begone!"

Review from 'Book Depository' (UK)

JeffR1
03-20-2012, 04:13 AM
The Happiness Trap

Dr Russ Harris

"Popular ideas about happiness are misleading, inaccurate, and are directly contributing to our current epidemic of stress, anxiety and depression. And unfortunately, popular psychological approaches are making it even worse. In this controversial, but empowering self-help book, Dr Russ Harries, reveals how millions of people are unwittingly caught in the 'The Happiness Trap', where the more they strive for happiness the more they suffer in the long term. He then provides an effective means to escape through a groundbreaking new approach based on mindfulness skills Mindfulness is a mental state of awareness, openness, and focus.Mindfulness skills are easy to learn and will rapidly and effectively help you to reduce stress, enhance performance, manage emotions, improve health, increase vitality, and generally change your life for the better. The book provides scientifically proven techniques to: reduce stress and worry; rise above fear, doubt and insecurity; break self-defeating habits; improve performance and find fulfilment in your work; build more satisfying relationships; and, create a rich, full and meaningful life."

Review from 'Book Depository' (UK)

JeffR1
03-22-2012, 01:39 AM
Wherever You Go There You Are
Jon Kabat-Zinn

"Mindfulness is considered the heart of Buddhist meditation. But its essence is universal and of deep practical benefit to everyone. Wherever You Go, There You Are, Jon Kabat-Zinn maps out a simple path for cultivating mindfulness in our lives, and awakening us to the unique beauty and possibilities of each present moment. He shows us how this simple meditation technique can enable us to be truly in touch with where we already are, so that we can be fully aware at all times. Jon Kabat-Zinn explains: What 'mindfulness' is; How to achieve mindfulness using simple meditation techniques; How mindful meditation can enhance every aspect of your life; How to incorporate mindfulness into your everyday life."

Review from 'Book Depository' (UK)

JeffR1
03-22-2012, 01:43 AM
Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway

Susan Jeffers Ph.D.

"The phenomenal classic that has changed the lives of millions. Are you afraid of making decisions . . . asking your boss for a raise . . . leaving an unfulfilling relationship . . . facing the future? Whatever your fear, here is your chance to push through it once and for all. In this enduring guide to self-empowerment, Dr. Susan Jeffers inspires us with dynamic techniques and profound concepts that have helped countless people grab hold of their fears and move forward with their lives. Inside you'll discover - what we are afraid of, and why- how to move from victim to creator- the secret of making no lose decisions- the vital 10-step process that helps you outtalk the negative chatterbox in your brain- how to create more meaning in your lifeAnd so much more! With insight and humour, Dr. Jeffers shows you how to become powerful in the face of your fears-and enjoy the elation of living a creative, joyous, loving life. "Should be required for every person who can read! I recommend this book in every one of my seminars!"-Jack Canfield, co-author of "Chicken Soup for the Soul" "It's a must! The most practical guide to personal empowerment I have ever read. Feel the Fear . . . and Do It Anyway""goes to number one on my recommended reading list."-Jordan Paul, Ph.D., co-author of "Do I Have to Give Up Me to Be Loved by You?" "Living is taking chances, and Feel the Fear . . . and Do It Anyway has helped so many people, both men and women, to achieve success."-Louise L. Hay, author of The Power Is Within You."

Review from 'Book Depository' (UK)

JeffR1
03-27-2012, 12:16 PM
Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Life: Living the Wisdom of the Tao

Dr Wayne W. Dyer

Five hundred years before the birth of Jesus, a God-realized being named Lao-tzu in ancient China dictated 81 verses, which are regarded by many as the ultimate commentary on the nature of our existence. The classic text of these 81 verses, called the Tao Te Ching or the Great Way, offers advice and guidance that is balanced, moral, spiritual, and always concerned with working for the good.In this book, Dr. Wayne W. Dyer has reviewed hundreds of translations of the Tao Te Ching and has written 81 distinct essays on how to apply the ancient wisdom of Lao-tzu to today's modern world. This work contains the entire 81 verses of the Tao, compiled from Wayne's researching of 10 of the most well-respected translations of text that have survived for more than 25 centuries. Each chapter is designed for actually living the Tao or the Great Way today. Some of the chapter titles are "Living with Flexibility," "Living Without Enemies," and "Living by Letting Go." Each of the 81 brief chapters focuses on living the Tao and concludes with a section called "Doing the Tao Now."Wayne spent one entire year reading, researching, and meditating on Lao-tzu's messages, practicing them each day and ultimately writing down these essays as he felt Lao-tzu wanted you to know them.This is a work to be read slowly, one essay a day. As Wayne says, "This is a book that will forever change the way you look at your life, and the result will be that you'll live in a new world aligned with nature. Writing this book changed me forever, too. I now live in accord with the natural world and feel the greatest sense of peace I've ever experienced. I'm so proud to present this interpretation of the Tao Te Ching, and offer the same opportunity for change that it has brought me."

Review from 'Book Depository' (UK)

JeffR1
03-27-2012, 12:23 PM
Forgiveness and Other Acts of Love

Stephanie Dowrick

When beset by a series of life-changing personal crises, psychotherapist Stephanie Dowrick remembered what she had learned early in her training: there are qualities -- the great ancient virtues -- that shape life for the better and can be called upon in times of need. Dowrick grounds her work in real lives and incidents, drawing on those times when people needed the strength provided by one of the virtues to move on with their lives. She ranges widely in Eastern and Western philosophy and spirituality as well as psychology to explore courage, fidelity, restraint, generosity, tolerance, and forgiveness. Is it possible to be generous and successful? Should we forgive someone who has hurt us deeply? Through stories memorably told, she shows that far from being dull or constraining, these virtues have much to teach us about honor, endurance, tolerance, steadfastness, and, above all, love.

Review from 'Book Depository' (UK)

Midwest Sue
05-03-2012, 08:47 AM
The Wisdom to Know the Difference: An Acceptance and Commitment Therapy Workbook for Overcoming Substance Abuse
Kelly Wilson PhD, Troy DuFrene MA

I just started reading this book and I can tell that it's going to be extremely helpful!

Midwest Sue
05-07-2012, 08:09 PM
Sylvane, I read the Caroline Knapp book a couple of years ago. Found it hard to put down.

carol
05-08-2012, 03:11 PM
Here are some of Patrick's articles & posts which I have found I've kept going back to over and over again for help. I thought it might be helpful to put them in "The Library".

The first one I read, and how I got here:
http://www.spiritualriver.com/stop-drinking/

How to stop relapsing:
http://www.spiritualriver.com/how-to-stop-making-excuses-finally-quit-drinking-for-good-and-stick-to-your-plan-to-live-a-better-life/

Addiction help guide, including advice on long-term recovery in addition to short-term sobriety:
http://www.spiritualriver.com/wordpress-2.0.4/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/AddictionGuide2.pdf

For people suffering from one of us in their lives and don't know what to do about it:
http://www.spiritualriver.com/i-have-a-son-daughter-mother-father-girlfriend-boyfriend-who-is-addicted-to-drugs-or-alcohol-what-can-i-do-to-help-them/

And Patrick's post of 9/7/2011, where he starts with "Someone had mentioned that they were curious about "what Patrick's recovery philosophy was" so I decided to spell it out as clearly as I could."
http://www.spiritualriver.com/forum/showthread.php?1-How-to-stop-drinking&p=5200#post5200


Sometimes I've found that the long links pasted and shortened above get broken, so here are the long titles to those articles so you can google them to find them again, just in case:
- "http://www.spiritualriver.com/how-to-stop-making-excuses-finally-quit-drinking-for-good-and-stick-to-your-plan-to-live-a-better-life/"
- "http://www.spiritualriver.com/wordpress-2.0.4/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/AddictionGuide2.pdf"
- "http://www.spiritualriver.com/i-have-a-son-daughter-mother-father-girlfriend-boyfriend-who-is-addicted-to-drugs-or-alcohol-what-can-i-do-to-help-them/"

And I think the link to Patrick's post is likely to break as posts come & go, so just get to 9/7/2011 and you'll find it.

Eric
05-09-2012, 06:48 AM
I was just about to suggest a thread like this. What good luck!

My favorite is The Tender Bar by J.D. Moehringer. I particularly like this one because it is about a guy who finds his manhood in a bar. There are, of course, many good times and much comraderie. However, over time it runs its course as alcoholism takes hold and people age and die and grow apart. Eventually, he realizes that it is no longer a life he wants to lead, but there is a bittersweet good-bye because of all it has given him. This story could just about be mine.

One I am almost finsihed with now is Unwasted by Sacha Z. Scoblic. This chronicles her first year of sobriety and many of the strange (and funny) adjustments we make as we grow into reality. It also clearly illustrate many of the insane aspects of our alcoholic thought processes. I like it because it does cover what a person goes through as they move into society. It is not easy, but it is also not unique. A joy to read.

Eric
05-26-2012, 05:51 AM
I agree that Drinking: A Love Story is an excellent read. It is a tragedy that she died from lung cancer only a few years after gaining sobriety.

Another excellent book I have recently read is Everything I Never Wanted to Be by Dina Kucera. The conditions of her family life our over the top with lots of dysfunction. The part I liked the best was seeing how this disease ripples through our families having profound impacts on the lives of everyone, especially our children. I went on for far too many years thinking I would change my habits before they are old enough to notice. A real eye opener. She also includes many excellent insights into the alcoholic condition.

Beth
07-13-2012, 05:46 AM
By Christopher Kennedy Lawford

It's a collection of stories from a lot of celebrities as well as not so famous folks.

To me it's like attending an AA meeting in the privacy of your own home. Each story reads as a very personal journey to sobriety.

I picked it up at the book store on the clearance rack for $5.98!

The Foreword is written by his cousin Patrick Kennedy. He is an amazing inspiration. He was the Kennedy that used Ambien as an excuse when he was caught in a drunk driving episode. Now he is clean and sober. If he can do it with all the drinking that goes on is his family, we all can do it!

ToddE
08-12-2012, 03:52 PM
Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Life: Living the Wisdom of the Tao

Dr Wayne W. Dyer

I finished this a few weeks ago. A good inspirational read.

ToddE
08-12-2012, 04:12 PM
Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail

Cheryl Strayed

A chronical of the author's long trail hike as a means of exercising her personnel demons. Not recovery based, but a good book who she went about getting her life back together. This was picked up by Opera book club a couple weeks ago, also.

Ken1
09-12-2012, 05:53 AM
The Willpower Instinct: How Self-Control Works, Why It Matters, and What You Can Do To Get More of It

Kelly McGonial

McGonigal brings together the newest insights about self-control from psychology, economics, neuroscience and medicine to build willpower. She is a health psychologist at Stanford School of Medicine where she teaches a course called "The Science of Willpower" that quickly became the most popular classes ever offered by Stanford. Course evaluations call the course "life-changing".

The book's 10 chapters reflect her 10-week course, written in an interesting and easy style, without any "academic pompousness":

1. effective willpower - just noticing what's happening is key
2. the willpower instinct - anything that puts a stress on your mind or body can sabotage self-control but too much willpower is stressful
3. self-control is like a muscle - it gets tired from use but regular exercise makes it stronger
4. why being good encourages bad behavior - we use past good behavior to justify indulgences
5. why we mistake wanting for happiness - even false promises of reward make us feel alert and captivated, so we chase satisfaction from things that don't deliver
6. how feeling bad leads to giving in - self-compassion is a far better strategy than beating ourselves up
7. we discount both future rewards and future costs - we consistently act against our own long-term interests and we illogically believe our future selves will (magically) have more willpower
8. why willpower is contagious - humans are hardwired to connect and we mimic and mirror both willpower failures and willpower successes of our social network
9. inner acceptance improves outer control - attempts to fight instincts and desires ironically make them worse
10. final thoughts - the aha moment

Each chapter makes use of fascinating paradoxes to dispel common misconceptions about self-control. This book is way ahead of any others I've read on the subject, for its wide range of down-to-earth and practical strategies for greater success.

Review from Amazon

It got so many great reviews I ordered it and will let you know my results after I try the exercises in the book.--Ken

ww43.
10-14-2012, 01:09 PM
http://mightymom.hubpages.com/hub/Is-Relapse-Necessary-to-Addiction-Recovery

Just an interesting article.

ww43.
12-04-2012, 02:42 PM
This was an interesting article. I can see clearly now

http://www.guardian.co.uk/theobserver/2002/dec/15/features.review127

Midwest Sue
04-14-2013, 06:45 AM
Don't Take Anything Personally, by the author of The Four Agreements.
I think this is an interesting way to look at things:
http://www.positivelypositive.com/2013/04/14/dont-take-anything-personally/

hayden
05-14-2013, 12:11 PM
Here's an article I stumbled upon. It just clicked with me. Particularly the following quotes:

“your best chance of staying stopped lies with acknowledging, in your heart of hearts, the bullshit that is your primary justification for your drinking: ‘If you had my problems, you’d drink like me’. It’s like you’re the last to know. Everyone but you can see it: if they drank like you, they’d have your problems.”

"What other people think of you, darling, is none of your business.”

http://au.lifestyle.yahoo.com/mens-health/health/health-strategies/article/-/6838301/how-to-quit-drinking/

Julia :)
05-16-2013, 10:33 AM
Diary of an Alcoholic Housewife by Brenda Wilhelmson

Midwest Sue
05-16-2013, 12:58 PM
Julia of days gone by, is that you? If so, it's good to see you back!

carol
07-11-2013, 11:42 AM
Read 'em, would ya?


Here are some of Patrick's articles & posts which I have found I've kept going back to over and over again for help. I thought it might be helpful to put them in "The Library".

The first one I read, and how I got here:
http://www.spiritualriver.com/stop-drinking/

How to stop relapsing:
http://www.spiritualriver.com/how-to-stop-making-excuses-finally-quit-drinking-for-good-and-stick-to-your-plan-to-live-a-better-life/

Addiction help guide, including advice on long-term recovery in addition to short-term sobriety:
http://www.spiritualriver.com/wordpress-2.0.4/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/AddictionGuide2.pdf

For people suffering from one of us in their lives and don't know what to do about it:
http://www.spiritualriver.com/i-have-a-son-daughter-mother-father-girlfriend-boyfriend-who-is-addicted-to-drugs-or-alcohol-what-can-i-do-to-help-them/

And Patrick's post of 9/7/2011, where he starts with "Someone had mentioned that they were curious about "what Patrick's recovery philosophy was" so I decided to spell it out as clearly as I could."
http://www.spiritualriver.com/forum/showthread.php?1-How-to-stop-drinking&p=5200#post5200


Sometimes I've found that the long links pasted and shortened above get broken, so here are the long titles to those articles so you can google them to find them again, just in case:
- "http://www.spiritualriver.com/how-to-stop-making-excuses-finally-quit-drinking-for-good-and-stick-to-your-plan-to-live-a-better-life/"
- "http://www.spiritualriver.com/wordpress-2.0.4/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/AddictionGuide2.pdf"
- "http://www.spiritualriver.com/i-have-a-son-daughter-mother-father-girlfriend-boyfriend-who-is-addicted-to-drugs-or-alcohol-what-can-i-do-to-help-them/"

And I think the link to Patrick's post is likely to break as posts come & go, so just get to 9/7/2011 and you'll find it.

carol
07-25-2013, 04:29 PM
Here's the zero tolerance part extracted from the "how to stop relapsing" citation below.

"What is the Zero Tolerance Policy?

The zero tolerance policy is a mental device. Before you can use it, you have to increase your awareness.

You see, most of us have been drinking for a long time. We did it automatically. We had certain triggers that led us to take our next drink, without even thinking sometimes.

In order to use a zero tolerance policy, we have to develop a keen awareness of our triggers.

For example, say that you are driving down the road, and your eye spots a neon sign on a party store that simply says “liquor.”

Your brain perks up and suddenly thinks about the brand of booze that you used to drink. Without you giving permission, it suddenly conjures up a few sensory details, and you may even remember what the alcohol tasted like.

This can all happen in a few seconds.

Now if you are not being vigilant with yourself, you might allow your mind to drift into reminiscing about the good times that you had with that alcoholic beverage. This is so easy to do, and it happens so fast that it can be difficult to stop it.

Now here is the key: if you allow that quick trigger to turn into a trip down memory lane, you will eventually relapse because of it.

Not today. Not right now you will not relapse. Maybe not even this month or this year. But if you do not learn how to shut that little thought down, it will make you miserable, and eventually you will drink over it.

The trigger–seeing the liquor sign–is not preventable. I am not cautioning against that. You will always see liquor signs. That is the not the problem.

The problem comes in when you allow yourself to reminisce a bit. When you allow your mind to drift back to the good memories. When you allow yourself to romance the idea of drinking.

You cannot do that. You must increase your awareness and shut it down the second that you notice it start to happen.

How do you do this? Simple. You just do it. Notice it.

Notice yourself remembering the good times, and shut it down. This is your “zero tolerance policy” that you now have with yourself. You simply do not allow yourself to “go there.”

Yes, we all have good memories of when drinking was fun. But that is not reality anymore. We became miserable. And if we go back to drinking, we will become miserable again. So do not allow yourself to mentally remember the good times with drinking while blocking out the bad. This is dangerous, and will get your drunk if you keep doing it.

That is why you have to shut it down when you notice it, immediately.

Do not beat yourself up if you find yourself being triggered over and over again. But stay vigilant when it comes to “switching it off.” Don’t allow yourself the “luxury” of reminiscing over the good times you had with alcohol. If you do, you will not be able to maintain sobriety."

carol
02-02-2014, 11:35 AM
Once again I want to bring up my favorite Patrick articles of all time.

The first one I read, the one that got me going - HOW TO STOP DRINKING!! http://www.spiritualriver.com/stop-drinking/

Best advice ever - in the middle of this article is how to do "zero tolerance" - I also excerpted some of it above. How to stop relapsing: http://www.spiritualriver.com/how-to-stop-making-excuses-finally-quit-drinking-for-good-and-stick-to-your-plan-to-live-a-better-life/

Take a look above for other suggestions, but if you only read two, read these two.

Alana
02-17-2014, 01:29 PM
This was a good article!

http://www.redbookmag.com/kids-family/advice/alcoholic-mom

Periwinkle
02-18-2014, 04:59 PM
Thanks for that link, I like her blog very much: http://www.cryingoutnow.com/

Alana
02-25-2014, 12:51 PM
The Good House a novel by Ann Leary

Alana
02-27-2014, 06:53 PM
Good article
http://edition.cnn.com/2011/09/01/living/diary-of-alcoholic-housewife/index.html?hpt=hp_c2

carol
05-08-2014, 11:08 AM
Some favorites for your consideration. . .


Here are some of Patrick's articles & posts which I have found I've kept going back to over and over again for help. I thought it might be helpful to put them in "The Library".

The first one I read, and how I got here:
http://www.spiritualriver.com/stop-drinking/

How to stop relapsing:
http://www.spiritualriver.com/how-to-stop-making-excuses-finally-quit-drinking-for-good-and-stick-to-your-plan-to-live-a-better-life/

Addiction help guide, including advice on long-term recovery in addition to short-term sobriety:
http://www.spiritualriver.com/wordpress-2.0.4/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/AddictionGuide2.pdf

For people suffering from one of us in their lives and don't know what to do about it:
http://www.spiritualriver.com/i-have-a-son-daughter-mother-father-girlfriend-boyfriend-who-is-addicted-to-drugs-or-alcohol-what-can-i-do-to-help-them/

And Patrick's post of 9/7/2011, where he starts with "Someone had mentioned that they were curious about "what Patrick's recovery philosophy was" so I decided to spell it out as clearly as I could."
http://www.spiritualriver.com/forum/showthread.php?1-How-to-stop-drinking&p=5200#post5200


Sometimes I've found that the long links pasted and shortened above get broken, so here are the long titles to those articles so you can google them to find them again, just in case:
- "http://www.spiritualriver.com/how-to-stop-making-excuses-finally-quit-drinking-for-good-and-stick-to-your-plan-to-live-a-better-life/"
- "http://www.spiritualriver.com/wordpress-2.0.4/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/AddictionGuide2.pdf"
- "http://www.spiritualriver.com/i-have-a-son-daughter-mother-father-girlfriend-boyfriend-who-is-addicted-to-drugs-or-alcohol-what-can-i-do-to-help-them/"

And I think the link to Patrick's post is likely to break as posts come & go, so just get to 9/7/2011 and you'll find it.

Julia :)
06-17-2014, 10:42 AM
All Fall Down
Jennifer Weiner

Julia :)
08-12-2014, 12:50 PM
Relapse Prevention

http://www.sossobriety.org/relapse.htm

carol
08-12-2014, 04:46 PM
Julie, wow, that really lays it out there! Good link to remember if "maybe" starts to creep in. . .

Julia :)
08-15-2014, 01:13 PM
Addiction Immersion: Is Focusing So Much Time On Your Addiction Healthy?


I'll give you a hint, the answer is "yes".

http://www.addictiontreatmentmagazine.com/recovery/addiction-immersion-is-focusing-so-much-time-on-your-addiction-healthy/

carol
09-07-2014, 04:42 PM
Here's the zero tolerance part extracted from the "how to stop relapsing" citation below.

"What is the Zero Tolerance Policy?

The zero tolerance policy is a mental device. Before you can use it, you have to increase your awareness.

You see, most of us have been drinking for a long time. We did it automatically. We had certain triggers that led us to take our next drink, without even thinking sometimes.

In order to use a zero tolerance policy, we have to develop a keen awareness of our triggers.

For example, say that you are driving down the road, and your eye spots a neon sign on a party store that simply says “liquor.”

Your brain perks up and suddenly thinks about the brand of booze that you used to drink. Without you giving permission, it suddenly conjures up a few sensory details, and you may even remember what the alcohol tasted like.

This can all happen in a few seconds.

Now if you are not being vigilant with yourself, you might allow your mind to drift into reminiscing about the good times that you had with that alcoholic beverage. This is so easy to do, and it happens so fast that it can be difficult to stop it.

Now here is the key: if you allow that quick trigger to turn into a trip down memory lane, you will eventually relapse because of it.

Not today. Not right now you will not relapse. Maybe not even this month or this year. But if you do not learn how to shut that little thought down, it will make you miserable, and eventually you will drink over it.

The trigger–seeing the liquor sign–is not preventable. I am not cautioning against that. You will always see liquor signs. That is the not the problem.

The problem comes in when you allow yourself to reminisce a bit. When you allow your mind to drift back to the good memories. When you allow yourself to romance the idea of drinking.

You cannot do that. You must increase your awareness and shut it down the second that you notice it start to happen.

How do you do this? Simple. You just do it. Notice it.

Notice yourself remembering the good times, and shut it down. This is your “zero tolerance policy” that you now have with yourself. You simply do not allow yourself to “go there.”

Yes, we all have good memories of when drinking was fun. But that is not reality anymore. We became miserable. And if we go back to drinking, we will become miserable again. So do not allow yourself to mentally remember the good times with drinking while blocking out the bad. This is dangerous, and will get your drunk if you keep doing it.

That is why you have to shut it down when you notice it, immediately.

Do not beat yourself up if you find yourself being triggered over and over again. But stay vigilant when it comes to “switching it off.” Don’t allow yourself the “luxury” of reminiscing over the good times you had with alcohol. If you do, you will not be able to maintain sobriety."

Zero tolerance - build the muscle and use it! As often as needed

Julia :)
09-08-2014, 01:44 PM
Building muscles is a must. Feeling way down in the dumps. Doing a lot of reading, trying to figure out how to proceed. I just read this article. I think I have before, it scares me a little bit.

http://www.spiritualriver.com/wisdom-advice-need-achieve-sobriety/

It's the part about surrendering. The part where Patrick says if your not sure if you've completely surrendered, you haven't. And then you will continue to drink. I don't want to continue to drink.

carol
09-08-2014, 03:40 PM
Julie, I've always had a problem with the word "surrender". To me it sounded like waving the white flag and giving up, and that meant drinking. Plus I couldn't imagine "forever" either.

Did you note this part of the article?
"If you are a real alcoholic or a real drug addict and you haven’t surrendered 100 percent to both:

1) The fact that you have an addiction, AND
2) The fact that you need a solution in your life, and that you have no idea what is

….then you don’t have a chance at making recovery work for you yet."

That's a concept I totally agree with. I do think you're there, even if like me you hate calling it surrender. But I sense you're 100% sure you have a problem and 100% sure you need a solution.

carol
01-13-2015, 04:42 PM
Reposting this once again. Read! Use!
Here's the zero tolerance part extracted from the "how to stop relapsing" citation below.

"What is the Zero Tolerance Policy?

The zero tolerance policy is a mental device. Before you can use it, you have to increase your awareness.

You see, most of us have been drinking for a long time. We did it automatically. We had certain triggers that led us to take our next drink, without even thinking sometimes.

In order to use a zero tolerance policy, we have to develop a keen awareness of our triggers.

For example, say that you are driving down the road, and your eye spots a neon sign on a party store that simply says “liquor.”

Your brain perks up and suddenly thinks about the brand of booze that you used to drink. Without you giving permission, it suddenly conjures up a few sensory details, and you may even remember what the alcohol tasted like.

This can all happen in a few seconds.

Now if you are not being vigilant with yourself, you might allow your mind to drift into reminiscing about the good times that you had with that alcoholic beverage. This is so easy to do, and it happens so fast that it can be difficult to stop it.

Now here is the key: if you allow that quick trigger to turn into a trip down memory lane, you will eventually relapse because of it.

Not today. Not right now you will not relapse. Maybe not even this month or this year. But if you do not learn how to shut that little thought down, it will make you miserable, and eventually you will drink over it.

The trigger–seeing the liquor sign–is not preventable. I am not cautioning against that. You will always see liquor signs. That is the not the problem.

The problem comes in when you allow yourself to reminisce a bit. When you allow your mind to drift back to the good memories. When you allow yourself to romance the idea of drinking.

You cannot do that. You must increase your awareness and shut it down the second that you notice it start to happen.

How do you do this? Simple. You just do it. Notice it.

Notice yourself remembering the good times, and shut it down. This is your “zero tolerance policy” that you now have with yourself. You simply do not allow yourself to “go there.”

Yes, we all have good memories of when drinking was fun. But that is not reality anymore. We became miserable. And if we go back to drinking, we will become miserable again. So do not allow yourself to mentally remember the good times with drinking while blocking out the bad. This is dangerous, and will get your drunk if you keep doing it.

That is why you have to shut it down when you notice it, immediately.

Do not beat yourself up if you find yourself being triggered over and over again. But stay vigilant when it comes to “switching it off.” Don’t allow yourself the “luxury” of reminiscing over the good times you had with alcohol. If you do, you will not be able to maintain sobriety."

AllenBerg
01-18-2015, 08:22 PM
that's a lot a reads for sure! thanks for sharing guys!

JNolds
01-30-2015, 02:56 AM
nice compilation of thoughts! thank you for sharing it!