Early Recovery Archives - The Ranch

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For those who are in recovery for drug or alcohol abuse, the possibility of eventually relapsing may be a thought that is continually present. This may be especially true for you if you are newly sober. In early sobriety, you may feel sure that you can’t possibly stay sober for a day or two, let […]

By Chuck Robinson MA, LADC/MH, CSAT, National Director of Christian Programming and Outreach

One of the first suggestions you will probably hear once you get sober and begin attending meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous is that you should get a sponsor. In some organizations, a sponsor is someone who introduces you to other members of a group and presents you as being suitable for membership. Once that’s done, existing […]

Spend enough time in the 12-step recovery rooms and you’re likely to hear the pejorative term “edging God out” — or “EGO.” The word “ego,” which comes from Sigmund Freud’s psychoanalytical theories identifying the interactive components of the personality, has taken on a different meaning from its original definition.

New Year’s resolutions are a popular way for people to motivate themselves to accomplish tasks they have been putting off for a long time and aren’t looking forward to doing. Unfortunately, many people never follow through on their resolutions — they either blow them off completely or give a half-hearted attempt to reach their goal, […]

Getting into treatment for addiction isn’t easy, but getting out can be even tougher. There are 86,400 seconds in a day, and each one presents challenges when your body and brain are aching for a fix.

Relationships are the lifeblood of recovery. Good ones can nourish your self-esteem and bolster your resolve in the darkest moments. But toxic relationships — the ones that bring you down even when you’re feeling your best —don’t just rub you the wrong way. They can put you at high risk of relapse.

Carl is a soft-spoken screenwriter who grew up in an impoverished, alcoholic home. For most of his adult life, Carl has turned to alcohol to cope with grinding depression and a gnawing sense of not being good enough. One night after a weekend of drinking, Carl had a blackout. He awoke in his car with […]

Therapists who treat addiction and co-occurring mental conditions have many weapons in their arsenal: psychotherapy, 12-step strategies, experiential exercises, education, medications and perhaps one more: Mother Nature. In a novel experiment, researchers at Stanford University in California randomly assigned 38 people to take a 90-minute walk in either a natural or urban setting, then assessed […]

Considering a geographical move isn’t an uncommon strategy for those of us who are in recovery for addiction problems. Many of us experience the urge to pull up roots and start over in a new neighborhood, a new city, a new state or maybe even a new country. We feel sure that all we need […]