Guest Post By Recovery Writer Dominica Applegate. In Sober Recovery. Blaming and How to Stop.

The Blame Game, we all have done it one time or another when we begin in early recovery. When we surrender and know our addiction is making our lives unmanagable, we need to learn to ownership, be honest to ourselves, and become the habit of accountability. Lets read what recovery writer, Dominica shares more about playing the blame game.

How to Successfully Stop Playing the Blame Game

Now that you’re in recovery, you are faced with the blame game dilemma—a new phase where you can either accept responsibility for your entire life or keep pointing fingers at others for how things turned out. Perhaps you blame your parents because studies have shown that addictive behaviors are genetic, but that’s still not a free pass for you to stay addicted.

Maybe you blame your friends for introducing you to partying, but you were the one who decided to put substances in your body. You also chose to continue using so really, and you have no one else to blame but yourself.
At the beginning of any recovery plan, an addict goes through an array of emotions like anger, resentment, pity, loneliness, helplessness, and so on.

To finally get off the blame train, the person in recovery must take the following steps.

Become accountable 
Now that you have taken the first step to recovery with the admission that you have an addiction. It is time to step up and be held accountable. Ultimately, you must admit that it’s no one’s fault other than your own. This is an important step in your recovery plan, as it empowers you to make the necessary changes you need to make in your life. When you blame others, you give them that power, which can really stifle growth.

Tell the truth.
Tell yourself and others that you are taking full responsibility for your entire life now, not just not the addiction. You’re not blaming anyone else no matter what the past has been like. This will not be easy, but it is a must to grow successfully on your journey.

Accountability in Recovery - Dara Rehab

Start a journal.
Writing down your thoughts and feelings tends to help relieve some of the negativity going on in your mind that affect your decision making. Every time you have a thought, or make a comment that shifts the blame of your addiction onto others, or outside influences, write them down.

Then, take a few moments to think of how you could have made that statement or expressed that feeling without placing blame elsewhere. Write them down alongside the negative statements.

Practice good self-care.
Take responsibility for life by taking care of your mind, body, and spirit. Maintain good personal hygiene, start an exercise program, choose healthy eating habits, pray or meditate, and continue your counseling sessions.

Honesty is the key for you to move forward fully. Remembering that you are the individual who led you to this addiction reinforces that you have always been in control of your own life, not control of your addiction. Now that you’ve decided to admit that you have a problem, you’re able to drive your life toward a long-term successful recovery.

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Recovery Online Education and Support From Home! Offered By The Best Addiction/Recovery Expert and Coach Around…

Recovery Online Education and Support From Home! Offered By The Best Addiction/Recovery Expert and Coach Around…

Most all recovery advocates know in order to gain personal long-term recovery, we need to continue to be informed and educated to get there. That is why I support many forms learning by reading, journaling, visiting websites and blogs, and online learning. The more we know about the disease of addictions the better our chances are to maintain recovery without relapse or roadblocks and learn how to avoid them.

That is also true for those who gain long-term recovery and are now wanting ‘to be of recovery service to others’ looking to recover as well. Keep in mind, many reach out and are in crisis and maybe needing to enter dextox, rehab, or treatment. So what do you do? You need to be prepared. What if you want to be a recovery coach? Or maybe your a parent needing help with a teen who may be using drugs, then what? Maybe you need help and support in your own recovery journey.

Then you need to know all about The Professional’s International Institute of Higher Learning Online as they have several online courses and more are being added often… Just click, pick your course, pay, and LEARN!


(Like this courses coming soon!)


They offer an array of online courses, even recovery coaching for those early in and coming to begin their maintining recovery from any type of addiction. Offered, a course that will even help you work a 12-Step Recovery! Don’t hesitate to visit and take avvantage of Addiction/Recovery Higher Learning, Coaching, and Support Now with the Experts at The Professional’s International Institute Of Higher LearningOnline  with the added convience from your own home safely online. More affordable compared to many other online or onsite addiction/recovery education and support!

ABOUT The Professional International Institue Of Higher Learning

The Professional’s International Institute of Higher Learning Online is a place of learning for those individuals who want to be the very best at their respective craft. These specialized training courses in the Professional Coaching Industry and the Addiction Recovery Industry are unparalleled. Students can take our courses at their own pace without paying outrageous fees that are unrealistic. Our instructors have decades of experience in the subjects that they teach on. To be the best, you need to be instructed by the best! They have trained hundreds of Professionals in the Industry.

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More About The Addiction Expert ~ Dr. Kevin T. Coughlin,

My name is Reverend Dr., Provincial Superintendent Kevin T. Coughlin Ph.D., most call me Rev. Kev. All that I have been, all that I am, and all that I ever will be is because of God’s grace. I am well trained. I am an International Certified Master Addictions Coach, I specialize in Drug & Alcohol abuse addiction recovery & family recovery coach, gambling addiction, Life coaching, Christian Coaching, Case Management, Prevention & Relapse Prevention, LAMA, Ethics, Spirituality, Sexual Addiction, Anger Management, Domestic Violence Advocacy, Interventionist & Life Recovery Coach, Licensed & Ordained Minister.

I am a Founder, and former Board Member & Spiritual Director of New Beginning Ministry, Inc., a residential addiction recovery program. Over the past 20+ years, we have been blessed to help thousands of individuals and families to change their lives! I am often utilized as a consultant on addiction and recovery and considered an expert in the field. I have given thousands of workshops and lectures, training seminars, and retreats.

I was an instructor at The Addictions Academy. I am The President and CEO of Phase II Christian Coaching, LLC. I am a member in good standing in the AACC, ICCA, NAADAC, IAMMF, ECPG, NCPG, and AACT. I am an internationally published poet and a best-selling author, I am 9 time National Bench Press Champion and 2 time World Champion.

I have been blessed to be awarded a Bachelor’s Degree in Christian Counseling, Master’s Degree in Christian Counseling, and Doctorate Degree, Ph.D., DCC, DDVCA, DLC, DD, and am Board Certified by DIT Seminary IN Christian counseling. I am an Associate Professor at Dayspring Christian University and a Board Member. I have been approved by the Board for a year of study to be consecrated a Bishop at the Florida Conference next year. I have a great deal of experience in volunteer recruitment, philanthropic, nonprofit, program development.

Today, I love to teach, educate, write, and Raise Awareness!





LIST OF COURSES HERE: Pick Your Courses!

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“I Welcome New Author ~ Dr. Rev. Kevin Coughlin To Recovery Starts Here”

Hello and Welcome Recovery Friends,



“I am happy, honored and proud to share a new recovery Author, Rev. Kevin T. Coughlin Ph.D., DCC, DDVA, DLC, DD, NCIP, NCAMP, IMAC., and his two brand new e-book releases now on Amazon.
Why yes, that is a long title, but Kevin has worked hard to receive each and everyone in both life, education and ministry. But the truth of the matter is, he is just a big giant Teddy Bear at Heart and helps many from addiction.”


About The New Author:



Kevin is a firm believer of The 12-Step Program to recover and his first book (e-book format) titled; “If You Want What We Have: A Journey Through the Twelve Steps of Recovery” is a fantastic workbook and guide to help you get the most out of working your 12-steps. One thing Kevin and I have in common? Gambling Addiction. I was the addict, he is the “Fixer” of this addiction. We both are passionate about advocating, educating and informing the public about this hush, hush addiction. And we both are contributing recovery article writers for Addicted Minds & Assoc., which is how we met.

Here is more about Rev. Kevin Coughlin . . .

Reverend Coughlin is a Founder and the Director of New Beginning Ministry, Inc., an evidence-based, twelve-step residential addiction recovery program for adults that is accredited by the A.A.C.T.. Rev. Coughlin has helped thousands of people to change their lives over the past eighteen plus years. He is an Addiction Expert, Blogger/Writer at Addicted Minds and VIP Interventions, Sober Services, Inc.,,,, small press, newspapers, magazines, websites, and he is a member of The International Association of Professional Writers and Editors.

Rev. Coughlin was the Editor in Chief for Joel’s House Publications from 1997 to 2005. He has been a Professional Associate member at Gemini Behavioral Health. He is a two-time World Champion and nine-time National Champion and State and National Record holder power lifter, a gentle giant who has championed many in his career. Most call him RevKev, they enjoy his lectures and workshops on addiction, recovery, and life. RevKev has been very successful with pastoral counseling and recovery coaching with both those addicted and their families. Reverend Coughlin has trained many recovery professionals that have interned at the ministry. RevKev is considered an expert on addiction and recovery. Many have utilized him as a consultant.

Rev… Coughlin is a member in good standing of the A.A.C.C., The American Association of Christian Counselors, The Evergreen Council on Problem Gambling, and The National Council on Problem Gambling, NAADAC, USAPL, and IAM Minister’s Fellowship, and The International Christian Coach’s Network. RevKev is also an internationally published poet and writer, mostly on Addiction and Coaching subjects. To date, he has had over five hundred poems published. RevKev is also the founder, CEO and President of Phase II Christian Coaching, LLC, the company operates structured assisted living homes for clients in recovery.


Kevin Coughlin

Rev. Kev is also a Nationally Certified Recovery Coach and Anger Management Specialist, a Nationally Certified Family Recovery Coach, a Nationally Certified Christian Recovery Coach and Family Recovery Coach, and a Nationally Certified Gambling Addiction Coach, Nationally Certified Case Manager, Life Coach, an International Master Addictions Coach, Sexual Addiction Coach, Life Recovery Coach and Trainer. Rev. Coughlin is also a Nationally Certified and PA credentialed Interventionist.

RevKev also works with The Addictions Academy in Miami, Florida where he designing recovery coaching courses and manuals and is an instructor for the Academy and is now the Program Director. RevKev volunteered his services with Break of Dawn International, Inc. RevKev continues to further his education with The Light University, NAADAC and the Christian Coach’s Network taking several courses and webinars. The Reverend has been awarded Doctorates and Diplomate status: a Doctorate in Christian Counseling and a Doctorate in Divinity, a Degree in Life Coaching, in Domestic Violence Christian Advocacy, and a Ph.D in Philosophy in Psychology. He also has a BS and an MS in Christian Counseling.

He is Board Certified with DIT Seminary in Christian Counseling with specializations in Grief, Substance Abuse, Alcohol Abuse, Family, and Developmental. He is a licensed Domestic Violence Christian Advocate, a licensed clinical Christian counselor, an AACT-DCU Associate Professor. He also is the Northeastern Vice President of the Administrative School Board. Rev. Coughlin is also President of the Board of Directors for DIT Seminary in Miami, Fla. Dr. Coughlin was approved as Provincial Superintendent this fall and will be sworn in as a Bishop in the spring of 2016 by the Evangelical Christian Church. Rev. Coughlin is in charge of addiction services for DIT Seminary’s Coaching services. Rev. Coughlin recently released a new book on the twelve- steps of recovery and another on Spirituality, both on, and will soon be releasing his third book.
Rev. Dr. Kevin T. Coughlin Ph.D. is now the Editor in Chief at Addicted Minds which was founded by owner and CEO Matthew Steiner.

Kevin sure understands the importance of the internet and how it has changed the face of addiction and recovery! And he is all over the internet both on social media, writer, and does radio shows and online interviews. Truly? I have no idea where he finds the time to do all that he does. I know it is a deep-rooted desire to help others from addiction I am sure of that.  Both e-book releases available on Amazon Kindle Store.

About The E-Books:

Product Details

“If You Want What We Have ~ A Journey Through the Twelve Steps of Recovery.”

When I was seven years old, I accompanied my mother to many twelve-step meetings and witnessed the miracle as it changed her life and mine. A few decades later the twelve-steps saved my life, my brother’s life, his wife’s life, my uncle’s life, and countless friend’s lives. After witnessing the power of the twelve-step process my family, friends, and I opened a twelve-step recovery program and retreat in The Poconos of Pennsylvania for adult men and women who suffer from addiction. Over the past two decades the thousands of miracles that I have witnessed, and lives saved are due to the twelve-step process. New Beginning Ministry in Beach Lake, PA. has been our labor of love, born out of addiction. You can find out more about New Beginning at New Beginning Ministry, PA

Helping people who suffer from addiction to get their lives back has become my life’s work; I’ve been blessed to be able to work with thousands of individuals and their families over the past few decades. There is so much wrong information about addiction recovery, and false information about the 12-steps and the different fellowships and programs; the truth is that these programs work and that they save lives! I felt it was my obligation to share what I have learned over the past 47 years about addiction recovery and the twelve-step process. I originally got clean and sober at a twelve-step retreat that was started by one of the Founders of Alcoholics Anonymous, Bill W., it was at this retreat that I started to realize that I had a calling on my life to help other sick and suffering alcoholics and substance abusers.

After two decades of teaching on addiction recovery and the twelve-step process, and developing my skills as a professional writer, it only made sense to combine the two and share this life-saving information with a larger audience. My mom passed on five years ago with over forty years of sobriety, and today I celebrate nineteen years!

My dream is to share my knowledge with as many individuals as I can during my lifetime, building an army of twelve-step professionals who can help save lives. It doesn’t matter if you are reading this book for yourself, a family member, or a dear friend; the information contained within the pages here can be life changing. I know that these steps changed and saved my life! If you want what we have; a journey through the twelve steps of recovery workbook and manual has been used successfully by numerous individuals, residential recovery programs, out-patient programs, professional recovery coaches, aftercare professionals, counselors, therapists, probation officers, ministries, recovery retreats, sponsors, sober companions, and family members.

“It works if you work it, so work it, you’re worth it!” Anonymous, they say in the rooms of recovery, if you want what we have, and are willing to go to any length to get it, you will recover. All you have to do is want it, and do the footwork.
This amazing workbook/ manual will aid you on your journey.
–   –   –   –   –   –   –

Product Details


I opened a twelve-step recovery program and retreat in The Poconos of Pennsylvania for adult men and women who suffer from addiction. Over the past two decades the thousands of miracles that I have witnessed, and lives saved are due to the twelve-step process. We found that this process was a spiritual program of action, based on spiritual principles. New Beginning Ministry in Beach Lake, PA. has been our labor of love, born out of addiction. You can find out more about New Beginning at  New Beginning Ministry, PA

I felt it was my obligation to share what I have learned over the past 47 years about addiction recovery, spirituality, and the twelve-step process. I originally got clean and sober at a twelve-step retreat that was started by one of the Founders of Alcoholics Anonymous, Bill W., it was at this retreat that I started to realize that I had a calling on my life to help other sick and suffering alcoholics and substance abusers.  After two decades of teaching on addiction recovery, spirituality, and the twelve-step process, and developing my skills as a professional writer, it only made sense to combine the two and share this life-saving information with a larger audience. My mom passed on five years ago with over forty years of sobriety, and today I celebrate nineteen years!

My dream is to share my knowledge with as many individuals as I can during my lifetime, building an army of spiritual twelve-step professionals who can help save lives. It doesn’t matter if you are reading this book for yourself, a family member, or a dear friend; the information contained within the pages here can be life changing. I know that spirituality changed and saved my life!

This amazing workbook/ manual will aid you on your journey as you walk in the sunlight of the spirit. My personal website is Rev Kev’s Recovery World



Go Connect with Dr. Rev. Kevin Coughlin on Social Media!


Website: Rev Kev’s Recovery World
Facebook: My Facebook Page
Goodreads: Lets Connect on Goodreads
Join My Facebook Group: FB Addiction/Recovery Group
FB: REV Kev The Addiction Expert
LinkedIn: Connect with me on LinkedIn
GROUP On Google+: My Group: The Recovery Community Family and Friends
My Google+: Rev. Kevin Coughlin 


“Recovery Author Spotlight Presented By ~ Gambling Recovery Starts Here” 


UNITE To Face Addiction Advocacy Day Is Today!

Hello Recovery Friends and Welcome All,

Well, I have to tell you, what a fantastic evening of speakers and music last night in Washington, DC!!
It was a “Historic Rally for Awareness of Addiction.” Joe Walsh, Sheryl Crow and Steven Tyler were AWESOME on stage last night. Everyone of my recovery friends and the fine folks who put this rally together were sharing so much on Twitter and Facebook, I had a hard time keeping up with posts and sharing all the action throughout social media!
Here is are a few shots of the performances that took place for “UNITE to Face Addiction” and our voices were LOUD! .. .. ..

” place out to the Universe to help us get these two gents out to the Fest next year, if possible 😎 Recovery Rockfest would love to have these two GUYS who played last night next year!! XO” Nyla Cione of

(Steven Tyler and Joe Walsh at UNITE to Face Addiction)

Michael King added 7 new photos
'Yes. Darryl Strawberry. My childhood baseball hero. Yes.'
'I gotta tell ya, Steven Tyler is BRINGING IT at UNITE To Face Addiction' 'Jason Isbell helping us UNITE'
Michael King's photo.

Liz Holt Audette's photo.

(photo’s courtesy of Michael King)

SO your most likely wondering what is going on today? Today is “Advocacy Day”  . . .
Here is more about what UNITE to Face Addiction is doing on Capitol Hill .. .. ..

Advocacy Day ~ 10-05-2015

On Monday, October 5th, the day after the UNITE to Face Addiction Rally, citizen advocates will meet with policymakers on Capitol Hill to engage in conversations about the need for addiction solutions and the growing constituency of consequence that is demanding solutions.

Advocacy Day has two overarching goals:

  1. Achieve a health response to addiction
  2. Improve public safety and protect civil liberties to enhance health outcomes of those in or seeking recovery from addiction involved with the criminal justice system

To achieve these goals, citizen advocates will:

  1. Thank Members of Congress who have co-sponsored 524/HR 953, The Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA), and ask other Members to add their names as co-sponsors to this bipartisan piece of legislation.
  2. Ask their Members of Congress to sign a letter to federal agencies indicating that they are in support of full implementation and enforcement of the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act.
  3. Ask Members of Congress to support the REDEEM Act (S 675/HR 1672).

To download the Advocacy Day training presentation, click here. To see the full training webinar, click here. For best viewing, please be sure to download the webinar by clicking the download button located in the top right-hand corner.

Registration for Advocacy Day is now closed. Please direct all questions, including online sign-up questions, to

Now even though the Big Rally is over, that doesn’t mean we are done. WE ARE just beginning this fight and you can help! UNITE to Face Addiction is building HOPE, HEALING, and HELP! With all donations taken in, they are building a foundation to help those in need of treatment and other services to RECLAIM their lives back from addiction. So please, you can help by Donating or Texting your financial support here!

By Text: TEXT to  “facing” 41444  or by donating through the website here:

WE NEED YOUR SUPPORT! Let us all “UNITE To Face Addiction!!” XOXOXO

Together We Can Face Addiction

Addiction impacts one out of three families in America. Sadly, today more than 90% of people in need of treatment or recovery do not receive it – this discrimination must end now.

No one should ever have to overcome addiction alone. No longer can we sit on the sidelines and let others worry about changing the system. Facing Addiction is OUR movement.

Your support will help build a national campaign that will forever change how we UNITE to Face Addiction.

Together, we can save lives – starting right now.  But we need your help.  Please donate today.

Click here to make a monthly recurring donation.

Thank you!
UNITE to Face Addiction

Author, Catherine Townsend-Lyon & Gambling Addiction Recovery Advocate

Facing Addiction.

Scott Magnuson's photo.
Scott Magnuson's photo.


What Does Gambling Addiction Look Like? It Looks Like This – Can We Help & Support Him?

Hello and Welcome Recovery Friends,


Addiction to gambling

Do you know what gambling addiction looks like? Do you know how it impacts your community? Did you know that 1% of our population has a gambling problem? Parents, did you know that problem and addicted gambling has now reached you high school and college bound young adults? Do you know what the symptoms are of a problem gambler? Here is an anonymous young man who recently reached out to me because gambling addiction is devastating his life.
And NO, addicted gambling is not by a persons choice to destroy their life.
It is a REAL DISEASE . . .

Anonymous Writes:

I am 32 to years old.  I am from — and that is also where I live now.
I was always popular, kind of a ladies man, I was athletic, and I was the first guy to leave the state of all my friends to be on my own right after college. However, I have since college struggled with depression. Since gambling addiction took over I:

– I have NEVER enjoyed any of the career opportunities that I have had.
– I have always been a poker player and now more of a complete degenerate gambler.
– I have been on several medications and none seem to fix this issue of depression.
– I have always been searching for the career that would make me happy and at peace.
– I have always been a drinker. I like to drink but I do not go over board I drink wine and about a bottle over the course of the day/night. This has been targeted as a problem to some therapists and others don’t seem to think it is.
When I have quite drinking for a few weeks I do not notice any difference.
I am still depressed and miserable. The longest I have quite for is about 20 days. on 2 or 3 separate occasions.

– I have never really felt that suicide is the answer but I can’t say I would ever do it. I actually highly doubt I would ever do such a thing. I do google it and think about it though when I am super depressed after a big loss.
– I am not normal with relationships. I feel that I grow very distant when things are starting to get serious.
I have a tendency to be turned off easily and get sick of women. Right now I have not had any relationships with a woman for months and months due to gambling and depression (staying inside).

I have been living with my parents for going on a year now in the basement. This house is dysfunctional with an alcoholic father and a mother who is sad she has to witness this. I also have a sister here. I have lost most of my friends for one reason or another. Either because I decided to never call them, or hang out due to feelings of shame for living here. And I do not like facing the public in my current state of living. I feel embarrassed and ashamed!

I lost my last job ( making about –k per year) in just 3 months. It was a horrible experience. The gambling has been out of control for a while but MUCH worse lately. I just have ripped through money like its nothing, pumping them into STUPID SLOT machines which is something I WOULD NEVER DO.  AND that also sickens me!!!!

I just know that the depression and gambling has reached new damaging heights. I cannot cope like this. I feel terrible. However, as soon as night-time comes along and I’m depressed and miserable, maybe buzzed off wine I talk myself into going back out to gamble again!! I am not sure if you heard stories like mine. I am not sure if you have heard people in as deep as me, with no job, no career, and no discovered passions dig out of this mess.
I am hoping you can tell me if you have seen it. However, I have tried so many therapists, nothing is working. It is the most frustrating thing in the world and I want out.

I guess what I want to know is. These are the thoughts I have had for years. I know there are generic answers like, ( stop drinking, stop gambling, seek help, find your passion, try a medication, think about what you liked to do as a kid)

I guess what I am looking for is :
– Have you seen stories similar to mine?
– What can I do about this mess?
– Why do I keep going back when I know its killing me?  – Can I one day have a happy life?  – It seems like I will never be gamble free… and its scary!

Thanks for listening to me go on and on…. you don’t even know me, but maybe you can save me? I would be forever indebted, and thankful!!!  If you have any questions that I didn’t cover please ask me.
Anonymous. . .

upset player suffering from gambling addiction

SO, . . . . My question to all of my blog friends and recovery friends who come to visit, WHAT would you say to this young man? Of course you know I sent him some information and support websites. But can you help me by sharing your thoughts as if you were talking to him in my comment section. I will make sure I forward ALL advice to him by email. I need to dig deep and ask for a little help from my friends here.

Thank You and God Bless,

Catherine Townsend-Lyon, Author & Recovery Advocate

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Important Recovery After Thoughts From Actor, Robin Williams In His Own Past Haunting Words…

“Robin Williams, Actor & Comedian describes his lifelong struggle with addiction that today is a ‘Haunting Awareness’ he had about recovery from addictions.
It’s a recovery legacy, an addiction awareness that he left for those of us who live life in recovery. Even though he lost HIS battles yesterday of addiction, recovery, and battle with mental health issues, he left this message, these past quotes for all of us to know, understand, and take to heart.
When will this trend of suicides due to ‘Dual Diagnosis’ of addiction relapse & mental illness? It’s time to STOP the government CUTS to proper Mental/Emotional Health & Recovery Services from Addictions! There are thousands of us out here who are not famous, or have the money for these almost always very expensive recovery and mental health services and treatment centers. But even when you have the $$$$, like Mr. Williams, guess it really didn’t help him now did it?

Snippets Of Mental Illness, Addiction & Recovery After Thoughts In His Own Words…

It’s not easy, and it’s a very POWERFUL example of the daily battles we can have, and even long-term recovery people can have a life threatening RELAPSE at anytime.
“It waits,” he told “Good Morning America” in 2006. “It lays in wait for the time when you think, ‘It’s fine now, I’m OK.’ Then, the next thing you know, it’s not OK. Then you realize, ‘Where am I? I didn’t realize I was in Cleveland.”

Williams, the comic whirlwind known for his hilarious stream-of-consciousness ramblings, was found dead Monday after the 63-year-old hung himself in his San Francisco Bay Area home in perhaps his final attempt to silence the demons that relentlessly targeted him.
”Cocaine for me was a place to hide. Most people get hyper on coke. It slowed me down,” he told People in 1988.
“The Belushi tragedy was frightening,” Williams told People. “His death scared a whole group of show-business people. It caused a big exodus from drugs. And for me, there was the baby coming. I knew I couldn’t be a father and live that sort of life.”
“I was in a small town where it’s not the edge of the world, but you can see it from there, and then I thought: drinking. I just thought, ‘Hey, maybe drinking will help.’ Because I felt alone and afraid,” he told the newspaper. “And you think, oh, this will ease the fear. And it doesn’t.”
“One day I walked into a store and saw a little bottle of Jack Daniel’s. And then that voice —I call it the ‘lower power’ — goes, ‘Hey. Just a taste. Just one.’ I drank it, and there was that brief moment of ‘Oh, I’m OK!’ But it escalated so quickly. Within a week I was buying so many bottles I sounded like a wind chime walking down the street.”
“You know, I was shameful, and you do stuff that causes disgust, and that’s hard to recover from. You can say, ‘I forgive you’ and all that stuff, but it’s not the same as recovering FROM it.”
“Just as the gay rights movement only gained momentum when individual men and women summoned the courage to “come out,” I believe it is time for those of us who have struggled with depression to stand up and be counted.To understand depression and to reduce its stigma, we need to pull back the veil to show its familiar face”. 
“So I am officially coming out of the closet”.



*My own after thoughts? Robins Williams death makes me feel some FEAR if I’m open and honest here. Is this what I have to look forward to because I live my life in recovery and battle mental illness? I can’t help but wonder, and makes me a bit edgy.
We can still learn a lot from a man who truly put into words his past battles with addiction, recovery, and severe depression. The answer to my question from my earlier post of the non-famous that passed away yesterday? The other nameless people who were NOT in the headlines, or made national news? HOW many nameless people die from mental/emotional illness’s & addictions by SUICIDE EVERYDAY? … Here is our ANSWER.
Suicide (Latin suicidium, from sui caedere, “to kill oneself”) is the act of intentionally causing one’s own death. Suicide is often committed out of despair, the cause of which is frequently attributed to a mental disorder such as depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, borderline personality disorder,[1] alcoholism, or drug abuse.[2] Stress factors such as financial difficulties or troubles with interpersonal relationships often play a role. Efforts to prevent suicide include limiting access to firearms, treating mental illness and drug misuse, and improving economic development. Although crisis hotlines are common, there is little evidence for their effectiveness.
  • Older age is associated with increased risk of suicide; people above the age of 65 are at the greatest risk for death by suicide.
    Approximately one million people commit suicide each year worldwide, that is about one death every 40 seconds or 3,000 per day. For each individual who takes his/her own life, at least 20 attempt to do so. Suicide has a global mortality rate of 16 per 100,000 people.



A Mother’s Loss And Call To Action…..

Hello Recovery Friends and Welcome New Visitors,


As many of us know, addiction has no bounds when it comes to who it will touch. Even though I have no children of my own, I have 4 nephews who I helped in being a mentor in raising them to be respectable young men. But no matter how well their mom did in raising them, in being an example of right and wrong, one or two may stray. It’s all part of the “Growing Up” process. One of my nephews became addicted to drugs.
He just stopped calling me, and I was told by his brother he couldn’t be found anywhere. Finally, his mother called police and reported him missing. 8 months went by, and finally they found him in a crack house!

NO parent is ever ready for their child to become an addict. My nephew went into Rehab and got clean. So, it maybe problems with Alcohol, or maybe Drugs, Gambling, Porn, or any other addiction that may present itself during their life. But thank goodness there are caring people in the addiction & recovery communities who are always ready to help. And the MANY Websites & Blogs for help and support. This is true for a good friend of mine, “Arlene Rice”….

As a mom she did everything right, but she still lost her son “Gabriel” to chemical dependency in April 2013, not even a year yet. Arlene and I met through LinkedIn, and when I read her profile and all she is doing through a project she has going in the “Memory” of her son, I knew I had to “SHARE” her  “STORY” to as many people, and “PARENTS” as I could!
So here is more about Arlene, her son Gabriel, and how a LOSS has been turned into a CALL TO ACTION!



*Here Beautiful Son Gabriel*
ARLENE graduated from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in May 2008 where she earned her Master of Divinity Degree in Christian Education with a concentration in Women’s Leadership.

After graduating, she served as Adjunct Faculty Instructor for Women’s Studies at Boyce College, the undergraduate school for The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY.

Gabriel’s Mom graduated from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in May 2008 where she earned her Master of Divinity Degree in Christian Education with a concentration in Women’s Leadership.

After graduating, she served as Adjunct Faculty Instructor for Women’s Studies at Boyce College, the undergraduate school for The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY.

Other instructing opportunities at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary included Online Adjunct Faculty for The Institute for Christian Leadership (ICL) School where she taught an online class in Women’s Leadership Skills.

As the Women’s Ministry Institute Consultant for Southern Seminary for the Women’s Leadership Program from 2007-2011 her experience included consulting with women ministry leaders regarding their ministry training needs.

As an Adjunct Faculty Instructor for Brown-Mackie College-Louisville she taught Anatomy & Physiology to nursing and healthcare students.

A registered nurse by trade, she serves as one of the staff nurses on the campus of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.

Her passion has been open heart cardiovascular nursing. She served many years as an Advanced Cardiac Life Support Instructor, Basic Life Support Instructor, taught Basic Electrophysiology and EKG Interpretation, as well as presented in-services on topics such as Basic Immunology of the Cardiac Transplant Patient and Understanding Idiopathic Hypertrophic Sub-Aortic Stenosis.

While working as a nurse for an outpatient surgery center in Louisville, she wrote a case study article called “Sweating Through a Malignant Hyperthermia Code”, which was published in the Health South Corporate Newsletter.

Arlene has been a contributing author to two books: “The Hidden Person of the Heart: What God says About Women and to Women Through Scripture (a book written by minister’s wives, gathered by Janet Wicker. Books with Hope, 2012). And “Women at Southern: A Walk Through the Psalms” (a book with many contributing women authors associated with Southern Seminary, Louisville, Ky, gathered by Jaye Martin & Alyssa Caudill, 2010).

Volunteering in her home church included ministry opportunities such as: Adult/Women’s Discipleship Coordinator, Evangelism Coordinator, New Members Coordinator, Youth Sunday School Director, and Church Clerk.

YOU can read her extensive profile on her website, and the project she put together in memory of her son called: “Gabriel Projects 930!”  and here is more about her site, what she does for others to help parents avoid the loss of their children to chemical dependency, or any addiction……
Her Personal Message is…

“It is my heartbeat to spur people on in their faith, to spur them to walk worthy and to spur them to live the abundant new life Christ offers. Shed the old life, walk the new, and thank God for a brand new day.” 

“Another aspect of interest is to offer individuals the living hope of God in the midst of uncertainty or crisis, especially to families who have a loved one in the midst of substance abuse or have suffered the loss of a loved one to chemical addiction.”

“There is no greater joy to me than to see people live out their lives in an active faith of the gospel. I want to be on the front lines helping to train them to persevere in the faith, even when the road gets tough.”


Gabriel Project 930

Beautiful boy. Honored to be Gabriel’s mom.
Welcome to The Gabriel Project 930!

The Gabriel Project 930 is a ministry focusing on four projects created in memory of my son Gabriel, who struggled with chemical addiction.

Gabriel passed away on April 12, 2013 from an overdose.
The four projects include:

The “Stay Clean” Project supplies individual sackpacks with men’s personal hygiene items to Sober Solutions, a sober house based in Louisville, Ky. & Indianapolis, In., for men coming off the street seeking to “get clean.” Items have been donated by individuals, groups, and churches. The cinch packs are delivered monthly as needed.

The “Hope” Project is a faith-based outreach ministry to families who have lost a loved one to chemical addiction. The outreach is based upon conference style sessions.

The “Breaking the Silence” Project, is the speaking aspect of the Gabriel 930 Project. Encouraging families in the church and outside the church to break their silence and to seek help and support. For many years I sat in the pew of my church silent about how addiction was destroying my family.

The “Fight for Me” Project advocates and informs communities about chemical addiction legislation laws such as Naloxone Laws, Good Samaritan Laws, and Casey Laws (Kentucky).

I’d love to come and speak to your group about lessons learned, the do’s and don’ts of dealing with an addict, confronting the addict, setting boundaries, and recognizing enabling traits. Or would love to tell you my personal story of persevering in the faith even in the midst of tragedy.

PS: Wondering why 930? Gabriel’s birthday is 9/30…..

So I INVITE each of you to please visit her wonderful website, become involved, and lets SUPPORT Arlene in helping other parents not go through, or feel the heartbreaking pain of loosing a child to drug addiction, or ANY ADDICTION. The reason why Arlene’s story hit home for me is that in the worst of my own addictions with Gambling and sometimes too much Alcohol, is I tried “SUICIDE” not once, but Twice! NO ADDICTION is worth a “PRECIOUS LIFE”! That is why it was important for me to “Share” how Arlene turned her loss into a CALL TO ACTION!
It’s exactly what I did. After reading about a woman I had never met before, had committed Suicide because she had a very bad “Gambling Relapse Binge” and shot herself in her Casino hotel-room. The story was written and printed in our local newspaper. My heart dropped when I read about her. WHY? Because I could have been HER! So I wrote my personal story of my life with gambling addiction so NO OTHER PERSON would feel “SUICIDE” was the ONLY OPTION they have to stop addiction!

No LIFE is worth less than Gambling, Alcohol, Drugs, or ANY Addiction. Arlene is a “TRUE INSPIRATION” to me and many others. Listed below are the different ways and projects to support Arlene, and her son Gabriel’s Memory. So “Click” and get more information, or better yet, GO give her Website a Visit!

Gabriel Welcome Notecard

Each Gabriel Pack includes a notecard with a picture of Gabriel and a message welcoming the men to the sober house. A personal note can be written letting the men know who specifically donated an all-inclusive filled Gabriel Pack.

  • Gabriel Welcome NotecardPrice: 0.25 USD

    Add to basketYou can also request the pack be given in honor or in memory of a loved one or someone you know who struggles/struggled with addiction.

Gabriel Project 930

*I want to “THANK ARLENE” for letting me share with all of you the “Beautiful” work she is doing through “The Gabriel Project 930” and my Love, Hugs, and Prayers to her and her Family. When we help one another with our own Stories? It’s really a Powerful Way to Help Others!

Author Catherine Townsend-Lyon

“Just Call On Me when your not Strong”……

Have you ever heard the old song by Bill Withers, “Lean on me”? Well, when you really listen to the words of this song as it pertains to Recovery, it has some excellent advice.
I happen to hear it yesterday, and along with a friend of mine’s Blog Post, it reinforced what I share as some GOOD ADVICE on a Tool I used often to prevent a relapse in my own early recovery. When we first enter Recovery, you seem to be go through phase’s, and one is dealing with *Triggers & Urges* all the time.

There are many tools and skills you will learn in treatment and 12-Step meetings that will help ease these symptoms as you gain recovery time. One fact of recovery is a big percentage of people will Relapse in the first 90 days of coming out of Treatment, Rehab, Etc, Etc….

THE MAIN REASON?……They don’t USE what they have LEARNED.
I have taught those who I Sponsor how to make a Phone List Plan, and to USE IT when
you feel urges and or you get triggered in Recovery. And, Sorry GUYS, but you’re the WORST offenders of not using your Phone List.

“Lean on me, when you’re not strong, and I’ll be your friend, I help YOU CARRY ON”
(Song: by Bill Withers)

See, when I was still employed at the last bank I worked for, I had to travel a little.
So I can’t count HOW MANY times my Phone Plan Saved me from a Relapse. There are Indian Casino’s everywhere and Lottery/Video poker machines all over, (my addiction was compulsive gambling) so I always had my phone list with me at all times.
I’m sure you’re wondering, “What is this Phone Plan”?
It is a list of Phone numbers with Support people you can call when you feel Urges or Triggers to Use. When you call someone BEFORE YOU USE….
Most ALWAYS you can talk and the urge or trigger will subside while you’re talking and sharing WHY you felt then NEED to use.

It really does WORK! Of course there are much more to apply to keep you Safe in recovery from Relapse, but this ONE ACT and really help you stay on course. And, yes
It can also be a “Miracle” as well. Here is a ReBlog share from my good friend Aaron
who has a blog called, “Christian Recovery” and how HIS PHONE LIST became a Miracle
for him. I encourage you to visit his blog at:  🙂 🙂


Hi, my name is Aaron Emerson.  I am a recovering heroin addict who is called by God to use my experience to help others.  I live in the Lansing, Michigan area and I am clean from drugs and alcohol just for today.  I blog about my recovery, God,  addiction and anything else I feel like.  If I can just help or inspire one person to get clean than I will feel like I fulfilled my purpose.  If I can stay clean than you can too.

The Miracle Happens

I want to write a short post about a huge subject for me.  It’s about miracles.  They happen if you believe them and want them.

I always used to hear people in recovery say that when you feel like getting high, if you call another person in recovery and talk about your feelings, the urge to use drugs will eventually pass.  I never believed them.  Well, not that I didn’t believe them but, I didn’t want to believe them.  There is a huge difference.

I didn’t want to quit using drugs for years but I was introduced to Narcotics Anonymous and treatment facilities during my using times.  I was forced to attend various meetings and rehab through the court system and, also, to please my parents.  I was in places that I could have got my life together, but I simply didn’t want to quit getting high.  These places used to drill in my head to call a person in recovery when I felt cravings.  They told me a miracle will happen.  I would just say in my head, “Bullcrap.”

I want to share something that happened to me yesterday.  I have been clean for a little over four months now.  I finally got desperate to change my life around and get clean so I started going to NA meetings.  I got a sponsor.  I have been using the tools that have been offered to me.  When I feel like using, I do what I learned to do a while ago but never followed up on. I follow-up on it now.  I feel like getting high, I pick up the phone and call my sponsor.

He talks me through it and helps me make a wise decision.  Yesterday, though, I was mowing lawn and it was the first day that it was cold.  A thought popped up in my head.  I flashed back to last winter when I would be walking around the streets of Lansing, waiting to pick up some dope.  I would be freezing my butt off, pacing, waiting, desperate.  Then I would hook up with my dealer and….you know….fix up.  Instant warmth.  Instant euphoria.  Out in the cold streets but warm and rushing on the inside.  I flashed back to that instant gratification.  The instant hit of pleasure.  Like a magical blanket.

As soon as I thought about that scenario I dialed my sponsor’s number.  He didn’t answer so I called another huge influence in my life that is also in recovery. She told me she could relate to what I’m feeling and she helped me think through my crazy thoughts. She flat-out helped me. Then A MIRACLE HAPPENED!, My bad thoughts and feelings just passed.  I got off the phone and prayed.  I felt better.  Talk about instant gratification.  It is a flat-out miracle.  That’s it, a miracle.  It happened!

In the last four months I have been through this quite a bit where I call someone in recovery when I get cravings.  This time really stuck out, though.  Maybe it was because the first person I called was busy so I called another person right after?  I really don’t know, but this situation was a huge boost of confidence.  It gave me assurance that God is always with me and that HE is working in my life.  It also let me know how blessed I am to have such a good support system.  It is a must if you are in the recovery process to have people who you can talk to about your problems and cravings.  You have to be able to get outside yourself and have people who want to help you.   You can’t do this alone!

The good thing is, though, that it is possible!  If you want to quit and stay clean you can.  If I can do it, trust me, so can you.  Miracles happen if you let them.  The desire to use drugs will pass if you want it to.  Even if you feel like using, call someone, and you won’t feel like it anymore.  If you do, just keep on praying and call someone else and it will.  It works.  This really works and I wish I could tell the world.  I wish I could tell every person that is struggling, “If you want to quit then you can.  It may not seem like it, but if you sincerely want to, YOU CAN.”  YOU REALLY CAN….BY: Aaron Emerson

Discover Bill Withers

Genres: R&B / Soul

 “Just call on me brother when you need a hand, we all need somebody to Lean
On. I just might have a problem you’ll understand, we all need somebody to lean
on…” “Just Call Me”…..

BY: Author, Catherine Townsend-Lyon
Re-blog credit to “Aaron Emerson”



Dear Diary,….Today I….Want to go back to Oregon!!


Well…..we made AND survived the long trip from Oregon to where I’m blogging from, Glendale, AZ. It was an interesting trip to say the least. I only had 2 Panic Attacks on the road, tried to convince my husband we didn’t have to leave Oregon the morning we had to get out of our Apt…..THAT’S the Agoraphobia……and on the road we went. Left all the big stuff in a Storage Unit in Oregon so I know we are coming BACK!!  All our clothes and essentials put in box’s to take with us to Arizona. Pretty sad when you can have HALF your LIFE in box’s ….But, the lord tells us what we OWN or DON’T HAVE does not speak or define who you are Inside.

Had one Panic Attack as we were going through Lake Shasta, such a beautiful place, but it’s been years since the last time I was in a car traveling. It sounds so dumb, but for those of us who suffer from Bipolar or any Emotional disorder’s, a long car ride can be a wee bit scary!!  2nd day was better, but as we rolled into Arizona the heat was not to my liking…LOL..
Then by 8:30pm, the drama started, and I had another Panic attack, went outside by the pool, and had my first release of stress, tension, these past years of financial pressures, and trying to go from just me & my hubby to now a house of seven people with a long cry.

They had a family meeting of how their house runs, like power and solar power, what goes in trash & recycle bins, and how they do their family meals for dinners, and a few other things that I felt they needed to be reminded that we not insensitive to others in the house, but they also need to understand that my hubby & I are married and have a relationship. And there will be times when we may want to eat & buy our own food. Will chip in with money for utilities and things, but food will by on our  own . Will chip in for essentials, but not to fair when there is only 2 of us and 5 of them in the family.

So, the next day I happen to put on some Bath & Body works lotion on after my shower. I went upstairs to get a soda and my hubby’s brother came UNCLUED because of the smell…..Now NO one told me he has allergies and is sensitive to scents, but IT WAS THEY WAY HE APPROCHED the Subject. He started yelling and complaining that I needed to go wash the CRAP I HAD ON that Smelled like berries off Right Now, because he can’t stand heavy smells…….I was like…..WTF??

So I went downstairs to my room, and he was still carrying on about it and making all this DRAMA over body lotion???  Then he was talking about me, So I went back upstairs and SPOKE MY MIND!…1st off….DON’T RAISE YOUR VOICE TO ME….2nd….DON’T DEMAND ANYTHING from ME, and 3rd,…..MAYBE if you were NICE about asking me to not wear ANY scented things because of your allergies like A NORMAL PERSON, it would have been NO PROBLEM for me to do. I also told him DON’T EVER TALK TO ME THAT WAY…..

I just knew this was a Bad Idea, but I have to support my husbands choice. We needed to have a fresh start. This really was taking a toll on our relationship. We have been married for 24yrs on Sept 29th, and have been together for 25. We have come a long way, but I WILL NOT Let his family continue the stress we had for so long, to come here and have to be under tension and stress all over again. My EMOTIONAL STATE and Moods can’t take much more.

So I hope TOM starts at his New Store  on Monday so we can start saving money for a little place of our own, or I pray each night that the lord will please help speed up the Federal Lawsuit for my SSI benefits decision! Until then,
I’ll take a day at a time. I’ll be back to update my Diary on Sunday or Monday. I’m Not
supposed to be blogging, but on vacation!….LOL…Keep the Support & Prayers coming!
I really appreciate them, and they helped get us here SAFE!

God Bless,
Author, Catherine Townsend-Lyon


Recovery Blog Post Sunday~~Meet Great Blogs of Fire!

Here is a SAMPLE of there Blog…..*DON’T ENABLE*…..

Almost Loved To Death From Enabling

Logic: Posted on Thursday, July 11, 2013 12:35 PM

Being loved to death doesn’t sound like such a bad thing at first thought. I mean who doesn’t want someone to love them that much that they do everything they can try to fix you? That’s how I use to see it too or at least it was perception I had created. Before I was diagnosed and sought out help for my addiction and borderline personality disorder. I was caught vicious cycle for most of my 20’s and early 30’s. I would have a good couple months when my life would appear to be balanced, then everything would fall apart or least I felt that way and just gave up on everything.  By acting on those emotions I often became depressed and felt like a failure. 

Then the mood would start to shift because I started a new job so I would feel that rush of accomplishment again for the first few months then that would fade and so would my enthusiasm for the job. Sometimes it would be a new boyfriend, I usually went for the knight in shinning armor types because they wanted to take care of you . The first few months would be great, I’d actually start to think they were fixing my broken soul. Of course that always wore off too because I started to feel I wasn’t getting enough from them. Last but not least were my parents.  Every time I fell down they were there to pick me up and mend my wound.  Not only was it emotional but it was financial too. They just didn’t want to see me upset so they always tried to fix everything for me.

It’s because I had parents and boyfriends that never let me hit my bottom I was able to coast and not get diagnosed until I was 35. That’s when I had my most massive meltdown and overdosed.  I almost died, I lost motor skills for days after I came to. At the point I was at no one could fix it for me, it was out of their hands I had to face music this time.

By law I was taken into psychiatric custody and I had to stay in the hospital until the Dr.’s thought I was no longer a threat to myself.  It was during this stay that I was diagnosed with borderline personality disorder and the truth about my addiction to drugs and alcohol came out along with the long struggle I had with bulimia. After I was released from the hospital I then went onto a dual diagnosis rehab center for 28 days were they worked with you on both disorders and addiction.  I learned how they were inner twined and triggered each other.

My parents and I also had several sessions to help them understand my disorders and addiction as well as the importance of establishing new boundaries, because for me to be successful in my recovery they had to stop enabling me. With some new boundaries in place I did not move home with my parents after my 28 days,  instead went into a halfway house and started intensive outpatient treatment.

I was also humbled because while away in rehab my parents sold my car back to the dealership because they were advised not to keep paying for it, I had to take the bus now. I’ve had a car since I was 16 years old and now I had to take public transportation it was adjustment for me.   As I progressed in my recovery and adjusted to not being enabled I earned the privilege to move into a supportive living apartment as long as I continued with outpatient.

Along the way my parents and struggled I still would call crying begging to move in with them, have a car again, or if I just plain out wanted something that I couldn’t afford at the time. My parents stayed strong didn’t cave in like they had in the past.  At first I felt they no longer loved me and were throwing me away but as I continued building my recovery skills I started to see it differently.
As my view changed my parents opened up to me and said it broke their hearts telling me “no” when I use to call crying. They were so used to fixing everything that they struggled not to give in.  I started to feel a sense of self-worth because I did have to do things for myself and work for things. After about 2 years between and halfway house and supportive living as well and continuing in intensive outpatient I successfully completed. It’s a little ironic because it’s probably one of the few things I’ve ever saw through to completion my whole life and it felt good.

Today I live in my own apartment, pay for my own car and monthly bills. I still have a therapist but instead of seeing her every week I go once every 3 weeks.  I even have held down a part-time job for about a year. My parents and I are closer than ever partly because they took time to learn about my disorder and addiction.

The boundaries we established are still enforced I’ll take a hug for support these days when I’m upset unlike in the past when I expected them to fix the problem.  My parents understand how dangerous enabling me was and understand that they can’t fix everything sometimes I need to fail so I can pick myself up to succeed.


Recovery from Addiction~Mental illness~Who Are You? Do You See The Monster?

HAVE YOU SEEN THE GREEN EYED MONSTER?…..I have! Here in this Great Google+ Article I come across, and would like TO *Share* with all of you…..In recovery, we need to always be diligent in taking our *Daily Personal Inventory* while we work on our Character defects, changing our diseased thoughts and thinking, learning *Humility & Grace,* as we also become Grateful within our recovery.

We become strong, important, humble people in the world. IN ORDER to help others, You need to Love Yourself  and love who you are in order to be of Recovery Service to others!

When the Green-Eyed Monster Strikes

      The best antidotes to envy
Published on July 11, 2013 by Juliana Breines, Ph.D. in In Love and War

Life is full of reminders of what we lack, and they usually come in the form of other people. There is always someone who is more successful, more talented, more attractive, or more advanced in meeting important “milestones” than we are. We encounter these people every day—in fact, they are often our friends, family members, and colleagues. Sometimes these encounters can leave us with a bitter taste in our mouths, or a green glow in our eyes, that familiar sting of envy. Defined as a state of desiring something that someone else possesses, envy is a vicious emotion that can crush self-esteem, inspire efforts to undermine others’ successes, or even cause people to lash out violently. It also just feels horrible. So what can we do to disarm the green-eyed monster when it strikes?

1. Acknowledge envy.
 Admitting that we are experiencing envy can be very threatening, because it means acknowledging our own weakness and insecurity. The first clue that envy is lurking may be irrational feelings of hostility towards the object of our envy. Just the sight of them might make your skin crawl, even though they have done nothing wrong that you can put your finger on. We are better off unravelling this form of vague resentment and identifying its green-colored root before it gets the better of us and damages our relationships. Paying attention to bodily cues may also be helpful, as certain forms of envy can trigger a “fight-or-flight” physiological response involving symptoms like an increased heart rate, clenched muscles, and sweaty palms.

2. Recognize that pride is just the flip side of the envy coin.
 It is tempting but generally unhelpful to try to counteract envy with pride. “Sure, he has a nice car, but I’m better looking” is not going to get you very far. You might feel vindicated in the moment, but sooner or later someone is going to come along who has a nicer car than you and is better looking. In other words, reassuring ourselves about our own enviable traits is unlikely to be sustainable, and it maintains the same unstable social comparison hierarchy where someone else needs to be put down in order for us to feel boosted up, and vice versa. Instead of responding to the pain of envy with efforts to bolster your self-esteem, try self-compassion instead. Acknowledge that it is hard to see someone do well when you’re floundering, and remind yourself that you are very much not alone in your feelings of inadequacy. Even the most successful people suffer from self-doubt at times. Being imperfect is synonymous with being human.

3. Replace envy with compassion.
 Although envy seems almost like a compliment, it can be quite dehumanizing. It reduces the object of envy to something very narrow and masks the full picture of who they are and what their life is like. Have you ever envied someone who seemed to  have the perfect life, only to find out later that they were in fact suffering in a very major way? These cases are more common than we might think–we just don’t have the opportunity to learn about someone’s difficulties when we’re mired in envy of their seemingly charmed life (facebook does not help things, by the way). It’s not that we should seek out others’ suffering, searching for chinks in their armor, but rather we should be open to seeing them in a fuller way, a way that will inevitably include both strengths and weaknesses, and joys and sorrows. Doing so will allow us to notice things we may have otherwise overlooked and as a result be there for them when they are in need. Appreciating a person in their fullness can also help us feel genuinely happy for their successes, a form of positive support called capitalization that has been shown to promote relationship well-being.

4. Let envy fuel self-improvement—when appropriate.
When our envy is rooted in things we cannot change about ourselves, such as a difficult childhood, a traumatic event, or certain health conditions and disabilities, using envy to motivate self-improvement is more likely to dig us deeper into frustration and self-blame. But sometimes envy alerts us to things that we want in life that are potentially attainable, if we’re willing to make certain changes. For example, if you envy your productive colleague, you may find that you could be more productive yourself if you learned to manage your time better. You may even be able to get a few tips from him or her—upward social comparison can be a source not only of motivation but also of useful information.

5. Don’t forget to count your own blessings.
 As the saying goes, envy is counting the other fellow’s blessings instead of your own. Counting our blessings isn’t the same as boosting our ego by reminding ourselves how we’re better than others, as in the nice car/good looks example above. It’s more about refocusing on what is really important in life, and on the sometimes intangible or invisible things we do possess and that are less dependent on social comparisons, like a strong spirit, a diversity of life experiences, or just the simple fact of being alive. Whereas envy drains our happiness and saps our energy, appreciation can reveal abundance in places we failed to look.

WHEN was the last time you worked on your Recovery Personal Inventory??
Author, Catherine Lyon

*My 2 Special Recovery Weekend Spotlights~Meet Phil and Paul*

I WANT YOU TO MEET TWO SPECIAL GUY’S THAT I LUV & ENJOY WHAT THEY BOTH SHARE ABOUT ADDICTION AND RECOVERY!!~~Many of us can learn a lot by reading their personal stories……

First will here from my Pal *Phil* who like me has struggled with Gambling Addiction, and he writes about it SO insightfully. Here is a sample of his latest Blog Post from his blog at:

My Poker Diary – a day in the life of a Poker Gambling Addict. The harmful effects of a gambling addiction that causes physiological and psychological dependencies as well as spiritual deficiencies. My blog is a personal reflection and analysis of both my good days and bad days, as I try to stop and recover from my three-year online and live poker gambling addiction. To responsibly gamble, is to not gamble at all.

Saturday, 21 July 2012

How do I stop my husband from gambling?

I am a compulsive gambler. I love my partner dearly, yet if I choose to gamble, there is nothing in this world that could be said or done to stop me from gambling. So when I hear people ask, “How do I stop my boyfriend, girlfriend, husband, wife etc. from gambling?” the answer is not what they were hoping for because there is nothing they can do to stop their loved one from gambling, only the addict can change; only the gambler can choose not to lay down another bet.

However, for an addict that choice is never as straight forward as  non-addict imagines. A person with an addiction has to fight the addiction constantly in order to try to break free.
Never give a gambler an ultimatum i.e. “Stop gambling or I am going to leave you!” It will never work out, and in the process your heart will be torn to shreds. Never believe a gambling addict’s commitment to stop gambling, because the odds, like at the casino are stacked heavily against them; that doesn’t mean to say they cannot stop gambling, but change requires effort and as creatures of habit people often become accustomed to ritualistic behaviour, which compounds the problem of an addiction. Many a time I have said, “Right, that’s it! I am never going to gamble again!”, only to gamble again, months, weeks but often days later, even sometimes the very next day. You only have to read this blog for an insight into the mind of a compulsive gambler.

The problem is not the act of gambling because a free society should have the right to choose to enjoy a flutter, the problem is with the person who becomes addicted for whatever reason. Anyone regardless of background or status can become addicted and experience a downward spiral; during the slide, gambling provides the addict with far more than a loss or a win it becomes their entire worldly experience; it affects the gambler’s mood, how they feel about themselves, before during and after acting out. A compulsive gambler can lose everything because there are no limits.

If you are serious about your future relationship, my advice is to do what a gambler would never do – cut your losses and run! That is unless you unconditionally love your partner or you are co-dependent. If you are co-dependent go and seek help and resolve your issues. If you love your partner unconditionally be prepared for a roller coaster ride from great heights to ground scraping lows, albeit mainly lows.  Think especially hard if you plan on having children as life is tough enough without Daddy or Mummy being a gambling addict.

If however, you want to try and make a relationship with an addict work, start reading everything there is about addiction and understand addiction more than the addict, be prepared to begin a long arduous journey. What you will learn may help you understand what your partner is going through, help raise awareness to things that you have become addicted to in your life and also and most importantly be the support your addictive partner needs albeit they just might not know it.

Try and reach out to other people who are living with an addict in order to extend your support network so you never feel isolated, alone or helpless.
Remember and understand that a gambler does not gamble to hurt you, they gamble because they are addicted nothing more or nothing less. The problem is the person addicted to gambling and not gambling itself. People can and do recover, but I know first hand just how hard that battle is. I consider myself a strong person but the addict within is often stronger.

Here is an extract from my thoughts when my partner was trying to make me stop gambling, she gave me ultimatums, was hostile, screamed at me; did everything to try to make me see the light, but I was always a darkened room with not a glimmer of light. People don’t like being told what to do and addicts despise it. Since then my partner has learned a lot about being an addict and understands how an addict’s magical thinking can lead to degenerate thoughts as a gambler believes their efforts and acts can make a positive difference when in reality it pushes the addict further from themselves and the positivity to which they aspire.

I cannot think straight. My partner does not understand nor respect my simple request, “I need space”. Instead, she attached herself to me and follows me around in an attempt to either try to decode my behaviour or keep an eye on my addiction to preventing me from acting out. The problem is I haven’t gambled recently nor do I want to gamble, and I am proud that I have resisted such urges. However, this distrust causes great hurt.

As a compulsive gambler, I accept responsibility for my actions and I sincerely apologise for the hurt I have caused and continue to cause. I am, however, responsible for my own thoughts, actions and perceptions so I am responsible for tackling my own problem either with the help of others or by myself, should I so choose.

The problem I am experiencing is far greater than gambling as it involves another individual, which similar to gambling, is completely out of my control. Her behaviour is unacceptable as is mine to hers and so this strange push and pull dance takes place. All I really want is space, to be alone for a moment so I can clear my thoughts and I can listen to my inner myself, so I have greater clarity.

Today, it seems that no matter what I say, my thoughts, opinions and reasoning will be counter-attacked, leaving me feeling frustrated and helpless once again. I am damned if I do and damned if I don’t. It was exactly times like these when I felt I had no control over my life and then I would become lost in a world of gambling to escape how I felt. While that urge is certainly a flame burning softly in the back of my mind, I step back to feel the warmth that often overwhelms me, I acknowledge my feelings, and I try to understand what is causing me to feel so anxious in order to accept these moments; for they are sure to be there long after having gambled so to escape is futile……..

***Hello, I am Phil, British, 38 and a Compulsive Gambler. My game of choice, was poker, either live poker or online poker. I am currently writing a gambling addiction diary as I try to break free of this hell.                    **** Phil’s Blog is:  *Diary of a Poker Addict*


Paul is a Unique fellow, and I really *ENJOY* his blog. Her is in Sobriety from Alcohol, and he has such Great Sense of Humor!! He is a little about PAUL and a sample of his awesome Recovery Blog at:


I am a father, a husband, and a son. I am also a recovered alcoholic.  I am 42 yrs old and drank for 25 of those years. I have a sponsor, sponsees, a homegroup and I work the steps outlined in the book Alcoholics Anonymous.  I take my recovery seriously, but don’t take myself seriously (remember rule #62!)   Hospitals, jail cells, detox and the asylum (oops, I mean treatment center) brought me to a place of surrender and because of these 12 steps, I have been lifted to a place far better than I could have imagined in my entire life.  Carrying the message is my duty and responsibility, which is one of the reasons I started this blog.  I am not a representative of AA nor do I speak on their behalf.  I am just a garden variety alkie who expresses his opinions and experience here.  I wish you the best in your recovery!

*That’s a little about Paul, and now one of my *FRESH PICKED* blog posts of his!!!

Screw You!

Screw you!

I am not a fighter.  I don’t know the sensation of what it is like to hit another person in an angry fashion.  I don’t know how it is to knock a tooth out , or the feeling of someone’s jawbone crack underneath my knuckles.  I have never had to roundhouse kick my way out of a predicament nor have I had the experience of body slamming someone over a parking spot.  It’s just not in me.  I’m too much of a delicate flower (and coward) for that sort of donnybrook action.  I also don’t think violence solves anything – at least that is what the after school TV specials told me when I was growing up.  But other than turtling  when fists flew my way, I did had one weapon that I was able to use effectively.  I had one thing I could wield with sufficient force and precise motion.  I had one thing that no one would wrestle out of my hands or force me to lay down.  And that was my words.

According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the word “sarcasm” derives from ancient Greek for “to tear flesh, gnash the teeth, speak bitterly.” Its first definition is “a sharp, bitter, or cutting expression or remark; a bitter gibe or taunt.”  My first foray into the dark arts of sarcasm was rough – I had no real mentor or master to help me along, so I figured it out on my own.  Through inflection and body language, tone and delivery, I was able to do what they call “unplain speaking” – saying something in which I mean something entirely different.  As a raw rookie, I botched up a few times, and was a little too obvious in my attacks.  I started to see that a less obvious approach lessened the chance of the victim to know that they were being attacked.  In my twisted little way of thinking, I wanted to hurt them, but not have them know I was doing it.  How sick is that? The sharpest blades rarely hurt when they cut.  A dull knife hurts when raking against flesh.  And like honing a machete against a mill file, my tongue got sharpened on the abrasions of my anger.  I learned to cut deep while not seeming to leave a mark.  It was ninja-like stuff, and the more flesh I tore, the better I felt about myself.  There was something to this, after all.

sarcasm (1)

What made me think of all this is the Cleaning Piece I am doing right now.  It’s in keeping a check on myself that I am able to see my old patterns oh so well and alive even today, even after the work I have been doing and in the asking of the Creator to remove these kind of things from me.   You see, I was always a wordsmith, a magician of form and syntax, a stealth bomber of insights, my words all wrapped up in delicious fatty layers of sarcasm.  I was great at it.  Almost too good.  I would cut you down without leaving a mark.  I would say something that seemed like I was building you up, but really, I was tearing you down.  It came off as me being very polite and caring, and yet, I was peeling strips of skin off of you.  Raw. And all of that with a glad and earnest look on my face, my intonation high and full of mock enthusiasm.

Disservice with a smile.

I learned early on in my sobriety that sarcasm was a form of anger.  I was thrown off by that and had a hard time reconciling the emotion and the action.  I mean, I wasn’t that angry of a guy.  I’d never been in a tussle of any kind, and I was only trying to be funny when I was sarcastic, wasn’t I?  Didn’t people laugh when I would unleash my honey-coated barbs and rapier-like witticisms towards a target friend?  Didn’t I get attention and hold court through my dry-as-a-martini humour and wickedly astute observations of others?  Isn’t laughter the universal leveler – the healer of all hurts, the medicine for the terminally stuck up and gormless?  So why didn’t it feel like anger?  Why now was I looking to put away the one thing that made me feel like I had some voice, some shield, some semblance of power in a world that I felt utterly useless and helpless in?  How could I defend myself or strike out?  The idea was that I didn’t need a weapon anymore, as that I was not at war anymore – I needed to cease fighting.


What I have learned about myself and my old ways of thinking is that my pain and hurt and suffering germinated in how I felt others treated me.  My ego told me that I was better than everyone, and at the same time, I was less than everyone.  So in the friction of those states was the ripe, heated growing grounds for anger and resentment. And then add in all my fears I had – the dozens, if not hundreds of them, and I could really get upset and full of absolute rage.  So rage away I did, and through my passive-aggressive ways, I got part of it out.  The rest got drunk.  So now having gone through the steps of AA, helping others, trying to be the man I was created to be, and being of service, much of that anger has dissipated.  So why is it, while I observe my thoughts of negativity towards others, watching my tongue, do I still have the need to lob little bombs here and there?   Why is it that I will watch myself say something that serves no one or no thing, except my ego?  Except perhaps to bridle up against nuggets of discontent, of bubbles of disdain.  Why do I feel the need to tear down still?

Clearly I still have some work to do.

But this is not about being perfect.  This is about moving to a healthier place, of shifting perspective, of growing spiritually, of being of service to my fellow human.  I am still learning, I am still trying to foster a teachable mind.  My actions follow my thoughts and my thoughts follow my spirit.  But there are gaps in there, and my recovery is about closing those gaps, cleaning myself up and strengthening my spirit.  I try to lay down the weapon of words of  tearing others down, and pick up the instrument of building people up.  I have ceased fighting any more.

  • Posted by in Fellowship, Reflections**Copyright~~Permission by both Phil & Paul Granted to SHARE their Web Content on my Blog****I Hope you will Learn A Little from ALL our Recovery Stories….It’s what being of Recovery Services to others IS ALL ABOUT!! God Bless All!!*
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