Tag: 12 steps

The Need to Be Supported and to Support

As we begin a new year, things around us seem quite chaotic — close to home and far away from home. This situation can be very triggering to people like me who wrestle with addictive tendencies. It can be especially strong if you are experiencing — for whatever reason — isolation and disconnection. I am …

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At the Heart of Recovery: Making Choices

As I continue to reflect upon the wisdom of the 12 Steps and listen to others share their reflections, I usually learn or hear something that I was unaware of before.  The 12 Steps have a way of giving new insights and new perspectives. That is the beauty of the 12 Steps! I want to …

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Service in Recovery: What You Give, Gives Back to You

The word “service” doesn’t appear anywhere in the Twelve Steps. Yet, it is a highly respected hallmark of this widespread approach to recovery. Hang around where Twelve Steppers gather, and you’ll likely hear “Thank you for your service” buzzing in the air. Service looks different for each person in a Twelve Step program, ranging from …

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Where Has All the Joy Gone?

This might sound like a strange question to raise for consideration in a newspaper dedicated to recovery issues. It is a question, however, that I hear being asked by people as we speak about issues like the impact of COVID-19 and what lies ahead, the many unsettled and turbulent situations around the world, and concerns …

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Substance Use Disorder and Trauma

As a woman in long-term recovery and a regular contributor to The Phoenix Spirit, I have written about my experience finding sobriety, struggling with and addressing cross-addiction, and being a part of a 12-step program. What I have not yet shared is that I am a trauma survivor, and how addressing my trauma has been …

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Resilience: Needed More Than Ever Today

As we live through these very challenging times, I can’t imagine anyone arguing about the need for developing resilience. This is especially true for those of us in recovery from addictions, whatever be our addiction or addictions. In this article, I’d like to suggest four practices that I have found helpful in developing resilience. The …

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Coping with Anger – Twelve Steps to Getting a Grip

coping with anger

Anger is probably the most poorly handled emotion in our society. From time to time we all experience this very powerful feeling. Some of the common causes of anger include frustration, hurt, annoyance, disappointment, harassment and threats. It is helpful to realize that anger can be our friend or foe, depending on how we express …

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Emotions Anonymous: Do You Have a Thinking Problem?

do you have a thinking problem

On July 25, it will be two years since I’ve kissed an old, old boyfriend. He is a modern man, with a hyphenated last name. His first name is Johnny and his last name is Walker-Red. I chose my sponsor because she was beautiful, poised, brilliant, a mother (a prerequisite as I have three children)and, …

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With a Little Help from a Friend

help from friends

It was the last day of a graduate class I was teaching on the Spirituality of the Twelve Steps. I asked the class what was most striking to them from the lectures and conversations we’d had. As though she had been given the question earlier, a woman immediately shot her hand up. “I learned again and …

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