Halloween is a time for wearing costumes, play and remembering how to connect with your spontaneous self. Sometimes it might be easier to act silly when you are wearing a costume but I promise you that you can do that whenever you feel like it. In growing up, we often lose the ability to play or try on new things to see how they feel to us. We can become rigid and inflexible. Some people view that as being mature. I view it as being afraid. Life is a journey of trying on new boundaries, discarding old behaviors, experimenting with vulnerability and playful adventures. I would have never learned what clothes I like wearing, what movies and music I enjoy, or what foods I like had I refused to take a chance and say “why not try?”

 

Halloween is a good reminder to me that I can be anyone I want to be, I can try new things and I can decide if I like those new things or not. Happy Halloween to everyone!

“Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.”

My experience with step 10 isn’t that it is a humiliating process, but rather one that prevents derailment of meaningful progress. After the deep work of steps 4-9, it wouldn’t make sense to revert to the pattern of ignoring our mistakes or missteps. Step 10 is an admission of our humanity, if nothing else. In my steps, not all of my character defects were removed instantly. Some were but most have been long-term practices in behaving with more kindness, humility and compassion. My understanding of God is that situations in my life are placed in front of me and I’m given the opportunity to chose the path of God’s will, not my own. If I continue to choose God’s will, in spite of my fears, doubts or insecurities, it’s natural that I will find my character defects falling to the wayside. Often, I chose to act out of my fears, doubts and insecurities and get that familiar twinge that tells me I need to do a 10th step. A spot-check inventory. I can pray, ask for god to direct my thinking, put pen to paper and take it to my sponsor or other trusted person. More often than not, I can stop myself before I cause harm and practice restraint. This still requires me to take the issue to God to pray for the power to be the person my higher power would have me be. I, alone, lack the power to solve my alcoholism & I lack the power to transform my psyche into the kind of person I want to be. I tried therapy, self-help books, affirmations throughout the years. Nothing changed. But a willingness to admit fault, make amends promptly when necessary and a practice of reliance upon a higher power to get me through the business of life has been the key to emotional sobriety and stability that I had never before experienced.

Let’s Get Moving – Our company philosophy is in line with the idea that people in recovery improve spiritually, then mentally and physically. This is why we provide extra structure and support in the areas of physical well-being. We require clients do 5 actions per week to take care of themselves outside of IOP, therapy and 12 step work to guide them towards a balanced lifestyle. Many clients report not knowing how to get started on their weekly self-care so we have begun offering free gym memberships for any client who is interested for the duration of their stay. We also offer clients the option to get a 2 week unlimited pass at a local yoga studio if they are interested.

Malibu Beach Recovery Diet – We have also just integrated the Malibu Beach Recovery Cookbook into our program. Our house managers will be using this evidence-based cookbook from Rivermend Health to guide our nutrition program. The focus is on healthy, high-protein foods that boost dopamine and norepinephrine to bring about faster physiological recovery from addiction. With these new additions to our program, we hope to make it easy for our clients to discover the joy and healing power of food and movement!