Therapist Experience…

Day 11 of my 40 Day Blog Challenge, over 1/4 way through!

Thank you to the 4 amazing contributions to the blog so far. It is so lovely to hear other’s stories of living through real challenge and that these stories really are encouraging others. I’ve got a number of other contributions lined up, but there’s still plenty of room for more! Do get in touch if you feel you’d like to share your story (doesn’t have to be a new topic, as each story and experience is unique).

Today I’m going to attempt to answer a question, (or at least give my personal opinion) which someone emailed to me recently. It’s actually a really common question in the counselling realm and it’s a very well debated one… Continue reading

Cream Crackered

Day 7 of my 40 day challenge.

January 2016 I posted by best ever time cycling up Ditchling Beacon, over a minute faster than my previous attempt! It was no Bradley Wiggins, not even on par with my peers, but it was my personal best.

A couple of weeks later it was a different story. It was like I had nothing to give, like I was struggling in a strong wind on a still day. Then the flu 😷. So that makes sense. Feeling much better by March but still hacking up some nastiness, I attempt a cycling event with my friends. And that’s when it all started. Continue reading

Life Changes to Make on Your Path to Recovery Beyond Just ‘Quitting’

Day 4 of the 40 day challenge. The household is down with a sicknes bug 😷 and nothing much productive happening today! Thankfully I came across a really interesting blog by Victoria B and she had really kindly said I can re-blog as part of my 40 day challenge.

It’s all about how to stay healthy in recovery from addiction, but there’s real value in this for anyone looking to better their general sense of mental wellbeing.

Thanks Victoria x

800 Recovery Hub Blog

Quitting drugs and alcohol is a good start

The path to recovery from drug and alcohol addiction isn’t just about ‘quitting’. Most recovery experts will tell you that making huge life changes while trying to manage substance abuse can be detrimental to recovery. Huge changes like major purchases, moving, and altering the trajectory of romantic relationships should probably wait until you’ve been sober for some time. It’s important to start small and work your way up to bigger changes, but the good news is there are smaller, more manageable life changes that can aid your road to recovery.

Eat better and get some more exercise

Adopting a healthier diet not only helps you replace bad habits with good ones, but it teaches discipline and promotes better mental health as well. A strong body means and strong mind, and a strong mind is needed to help battle addiction. Exercise is great…

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Inside Out…

Day 3 of 40 Day Challenge. I’m blogging about issues around mental wellbeing through lent and would love you to join in with inspiring stories, topics/suggestions for topics etc. Please feel free to follow this blog, comment share etc so we can encourage each other in this area over the coming weeks. You can also contact me privately via the Home page on this Blog site.

The first film I took my daughter to see at the cinema was Inside Out. It’s a lovely film about a young girl’s battle with her emotions as she comes to terms with big life changes. I’m sure most of it went over my daughter’s head, but I have to admit to shedding a tear at the end 😥.  Continue reading

Addiction

It takes no prisoners. The death of Charles Kennedy last week reminds us of that. It isn’t picky or selective, it doesn’t discriminate. Give it an inch and it will take a trip round the planet and then some.  Mr Kennedy has been remembered for his achievements in politics, for his amiable style and humanity in an hostile playing field. And so he should be. Any death through addiction is a tragedy.

It is so misunderstood. So easy to judge. As if the homeless alcoholic on the park bench somehow thought that alcohol would be a good career choice. Or the heroin addict gouging out in a derelict tower block surrounded by dirty needles and other peoples urine, somehow saw it in a film aged 7 and aspired to be just like that when he grew up.

No. It is not a lifestyle choice. It happens to some and not to others. Like diabetes or cancer, some suffer addiction. Sadly it is a disease with impossible demands. The insatiable need for more, and more. There are a few who can afford the financial demands, there are none who can afford the eventual consequences.

For those who can’t afford the financial demands, options are bleak and the resulting behaviour is often difficult for others to stomach. So we judge.

I don’t for a minute condone certain behaviours. Some have suffered horrendously at the hands of others who are in addiction. It’s truly tragic.

It’s all tragic. But there is no choice. Affordable or not, wise or foolish, the need for the next drink, smoke, score always wins out. Some will be remembered well. But for those who had to resort to stealing, manipulation, prostitution, to sustain a behaviour they hated themselves for; they most likely will be remembered for those things. Again, tragic.

It is easy to see behaviour we don’t like or understand and cast our judgement. Addiction is perhaps so misunderstood because of the behaviours it often leads to.  But most of us try a drink at some point. So understand this; if you don’t suffer the horror of addiction, then it is merely that when you took your first drink, you played Russian roulette and won.

Addiction is not about poor will power or having an immoral bent. For about 10% of the population, substances in the body have far more dire consequences than for the rest. It is nobody’s fault.

This blog feels perhaps that it may be asking a lot in terms of challenging our attitudes around those who suffer with addiction, especially if you have been the victim of addiction driven behaviour. But mostly I urge compassion. Charles Kennedy is warmly remembered. He could afford his drink but paid with his life.

Perhaps with compassion will come patience, and with that a little understanding.