‘Spirituality and recovery’ by djmac

Wisdom-300x199‘Spirituality and recovery – do they go together? Hang on a second; what is spirituality and why are scientific articles on the place of spirituality in recovery falling into my inbox on a regular basis? Yes, I’m calling them scientific articles because they appear in peer-reviewed journals.

I was at a graduate art show last night and got talking to a hospital chaplain about the nature of spirituality. I don’t come across hospital chaplains too much in my day-to-day life, but oddly enough, I’d been listening to one on Radio 4’s ‘Thought for the day’ slot only a day or two before.

I was quite surprised by the lack of religious content to the job. The minister on the radio was much more focused on supporting people as they faced challenges, on helping them get through and on finding meaning in the difficulties they were experiencing.

Last night’s chaplain explained that in the ‘old days’ the hospital chaplain was expected to be ‘a witness for Christ’.

Now the focus was on helping ill people and their families find spiritual health and address social and practical need too. It’s about holistic health. I talked about the growing evidence of the link between spirituality and recovery and began to realise as we talked that spirituality can be part of building recovery capital.

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‘Open source sobriety: Getting past chauvinism in early recovery’ by Matt Robert

woman-in-cellHere’s the latest posting on Marc Lewis’s blog, a guest blog from Matt Robert.

‘Here’s another guest post, and it’s a winner. Sincere thanks to Matt Robert, a  SMART Recovery facilitator I met last June in Boston….

I’ve been spending a lot of time these days going in and out of locked detox units. And it’s interesting because, in most important ways, they haven’t changed very much at all. But I’ve changed, and the reason for my going into them has changed as well. Now I go into them because I want to, and I leave because I can.  I go into them now to talk about recovery.

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Welcome to SMART Recovery Guide

imagesI just wanted to let you know that I have a set up a new page in our Resources section which focuses on SMART Recovery.

This ‘Guide’ contains three video clips of SMART President Tom Horvath talking about this self-empowering peer support group and its programme, along with a film of Curtis Boudreau introducing SMART Recovery principles. There are also two Recovery Stories from people who used SMART.

All of these film clips have appeared in my blogs. I hope you find the page of value. Have a great weekend.

SMART Recovery Guide

Learn more about the self-empowering addiction recovery support group SMART Recovery. And watch two Recovery Stories from people who used SMART. Finally, we have an interesting blog and a newspaper article.

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‘If Not AA, Then What? SMART Recovery and the AA Alternatives’ by Tom Horvath

images-2Here’s an article from SMART Recovery President Tom Horvath which appeared in the Huffington Post recently.

‘Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and other 12-step groups are the leading U.S. approach to addiction recovery. Millions have attended these meetings and “worked the steps.” Popular media include countless references to AA-oriented recovery. Many scientific studies show that attending these meetings is associated with recovery.

However, many individuals will not attend these meetings, or will not attend them long enough to solidify change. Their reasons include not wanting to accept the labels “addict” or “alcoholic,” not wanting to attend groups of any kind, not wanting to consider oneself powerless, not thinking of oneself as having a disease, or not wanting an approach that encourages lifelong attendance.

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‘An intro to SMART Recovery’ by Curtis Boudreau

Mark Gilman spotted this little gem. For those of you who don’t know,  SMART Recovery is based on a 4-point programme that helps a person: build and maintain motivation; cope with urges; manage thoughts, feelings and behaviours; and live a balanced life.

SMART teaches self-empowerment and self-reliance. It provides meetings that are educational, supportive and include open discussions. 

This instructional film is well worth a watch. 

Managing Your ‘New Life’ by Green-In-MI

people on zebra crossingSpotted this excellent blog on the SMART Recovery website. 

“Getting used to sober life can be a process of adjusting in a number of ways.”
One of the things the SMART community talks about is making changes in your life as part of the process for sustained abstinence from your drug of choice or problem behavior. People share experiences like creating new circles of friends or even moving to new places or cities.

SMART specifically talks about finding one or more VACIs (Vitally Absorbing Creative Interests). A number of us spent an awful lot of time planning on using, using, and recovering from using. For many of us, our drug of choice was the focus of day-to-day life.

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SMART Recovery Member Stories 2010: “Jim”

A SMART Recovery participant and volunteer relates his story about SMART.

“Drinking will always be a choice I can make, but I happily chose not to. I’ve come to realise how much of life drinking has taken away from me, how much of life I cheated myself out of by the choices I made. My sobriety allows me to show up for life…”

‘Self empowering addiction treatment’ by Tom Horvath

Tom describes two aspects of the 4-point SMART Recovery programme: (1) dealing with cravings, and (2) managing thoughts, feeling and behaviours.

SMART Recovery is the leading self-empowering addiction recovery support group. Participants learn tools for addiction recovery based on the latest scientific research and participate in a world-wide community which includes free, self-empowering, science-based mutual help groups.

What is SMART Recovery?

Tom Horvath describes SMART Recovery, ‘a self empowering support group of meetings around the world… It is scientifically based and is offered through free online or face-to-face meetings designed for people who want to abstain from any substance or activity addiction. A chat room is available 24/7.

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