How Can I Get Out of My Rut?

stuck in a rut

Are you feeling like lately you’ve been stuck in a rut? Are you unable to find the energy to break a self-destructive pattern? Maybe you’re just plain old-fashioned bored. Or maybe things have been particularly hard since, say, March of last year? Well, you’re not alone. Everybody feels stuck in a rut at least once in their lives, but usually a lot more often. And these days, most of the country feels stuck in one way or another. It’s human to feel overwhelmed sometimes. Sadly, sometimes we have a bad day that stretches into a few, or we don’t feel our best for a week or longer. It happens to everyone, but that doesn’t mean we have to just lie down and wait for the clouds to pass. The fact that you’re here asking how to break out of your rut is the best first step toward shaking things up….

Continue Reading

We Believe #9: Fostering an Environment of Honesty, Intimacy, and Trust

honesty and trust in recovery

At Jaywalker Lodge, we focus on helping men find lasting recovery from alcoholism and addiction with a passion for helping those who have stumbled in previous attempts. This is not just what we do, it’s who we are. Most of us were once people in the exact same position, and that’s why our hearts so fully invested in what we do. We care because we know what it’s like. The very spirit of Jaywalker Lodge and what happens here has a heart of its own, too. We are guided by our shared core values — they influence every single thing that we do, every single day. This is why Jaywalker Lodge is special, it’s why we do what we do, and it’s why we’re able to help alcoholics and addicts find recovery. We live by what we believe, and we want to share it with you. An Inspiring Environment Both…

Continue Reading

Outside Issues: Emotional Health

emotional health

Emotional health is an important issue to address, especially for alcoholics and addicts in recovery. So often, our emotional health gets misplaced or swept up by our mental health and spiritual health practices. It’s a common pattern to focus on our mental and spiritual health in recovery because if we get too far off course in these areas, the effects are usually very noticeable and acute. Skimping on spiritual health drives us closer to relapse and opens the door for the mental obsession to return, so when we feel our spiritual health declining, we can hopefully address it. When our mental health isn’t being taken care of, we can still tell that we’re anxious or depressed, even if we hide it well. But when our emotional health is out of whack, we can often overlook it. We may chalk up the little signs to other causes or even misdiagnose the…

Continue Reading

Resting on Our Laurels

resting on our laurels

This may not be a commonly used phrase anymore, but it still gets a lot of airtime in the rooms of recovery. The words may sound old-fashioned or even silly, but they illuminate an attitude about actions that can be very subversive and potentially very destructive. We may not even be aware that we hold this attitude, and it will undermine us all the more if it goes unseen. This odd phrase means well and is meant to save us from avoidable trouble. So let’s take a closer look at what this phrase can help us understand about life and our recovery. What Does It Mean? To “rest on our laurels” means to relax and rely on our past achievements or success as justification for not achieving new things or new success. It comes from the ancient Greek and Roman societies, where high-ranking and high-achieving people were awarded crowns made…

Continue Reading

Using Hope as a Tool in Treatment

hope in treatment

It is nothing less than heartbreaking to suffer from alcoholism and addiction. Not only for those afflicted directly but all who know and love them. It is a devastating disease that wreaks complete havoc on so many lives. It is precisely this aspect of alcoholism and addiction that calls for nothing less than real and powerful hope in response. This is not a pop psychology, New Age treatment for the disease — it is a working part of the 12-Step foundation of lasting recovery. Without at least the possibility that every aspect of their life can improve by finding and maintaining recovery, alcoholics and addicts may not find enough incentive to do the work that recovery requires. After all, alcohol and substances provide temporary relief of mental, emotional, spiritual, and sometimes physical pain. If there is not a strong chance for healing and transformation, there may not be enough momentum…

Continue Reading

Don’t Forget To Study the Big Book

studying the Big Book

Studying isn’t necessarily everyone’s favorite way to spend time, though most of us have at least a few things we enjoy learning about. For those of us who are alcoholics and addicts, we come into contact with the book Alcoholics Anonymous, commonly known as the “Big Book.” This vital literature actually contains the 12-Step program of recovery, along with information about the causes, conditions, and consequences of the disease of alcoholism and addiction. It also contains testimony and stories from people who have worked the 12-Steps and found recovery as a result. This book is simply a necessity for those who wish to recover from alcoholism and addiction. It will be the sourcebook used to work the 12-Steps with our sponsor. We can read it when we need a meeting, but can’t get to one. It will help us understand the deadly disease we suffer from. Reading it regularly can…

Continue Reading

Putting the Past in Its Proper Place

moving on from past trauma

Everyone has something in their past that weighs on them or still troubles them in other ways. We all have a moment of regret or remorse, something we wish we had done differently or hadn’t done at all. Perhaps there is something we wish we had done. It’s quite common to have some negativity in our past. Some of us even have trauma from our past that still hangs around. In an ideal world, we could effortlessly process our experiences, grow and learn from them, and then move forward. Unfortunately, most people don’t learn how to do this until later in life. For alcoholics and addicts, we usually don’t pick up on any of these techniques until we find the program of recovery. And even then, it’s quite a steep learning curve. Our pasts before our disease took hold are often filled with painful memories or feelings of shame and…

Continue Reading

How Can I Have Self-Discipline and Self-Control?

self-discipline

The quest for self-discipline and self-control goes way back in human history. There are answers aplenty, theories, practices, and opinions, with no shortage of things to try to seek resolution. For most of the world, it’s just a matter of choosing which theory seems to suit them best and finding out whether it works or not. For those of us who are alcoholics and addicts, we come out on top in this age-old search. As if we weren’t already the luckiest people on earth, saved from the gates of death and given the tools to live a life beyond our wildest dreams, we now also have some very effective answers for problems that the whole world deals with. Don’t We All Have Some Already? Sure, everybody has a bit of both in different areas of life. But on the whole, most people think they would be happier with significantly more…

Continue Reading

Emotional Extremes (and Why We Should Avoid Them)

emotional extremes

Emotions are a part of human life. No matter who you are, what you are, or where you’re from, it’s incredibly likely that you have feelings. Some of us may be more sensitive than others, while others may have lost touch with their emotions or tried to bury them. For those of us who are alcoholics and addicts, it’s just as likely that we are in any of these camps. Typically speaking, alcoholics and addicts are more susceptible to our feelings and emotions. They affect us more acutely, often causing outbursts or drastic actions to avoid them altogether. Our sensitivity to our emotions can be a hard thing for us to admit, but the literature of recovery is pretty clear about it. We drank or used because we liked the feeling. We celebrated happily and indulged even more. Then we did it too much and lost control. We suffered consequences that…

Continue Reading

Relationships and Love

relationships in recovery

No matter who you are — alcoholic, addict, al-anon, double-winner or otherwise — relationships are a huge part of human life, whether we are managing, acquiring, or ending them. Relationships occupy most of our emotional energy and a huge portion of our daily efforts, whether we seem to do well in our relationships or struggle to find and keep meaningful ones. Relationships can go a long way in making our lives feel full, our sorrows lessened, and our joys multiplied when they are shared. This is what makes relationships and love often go hand in hand. Love isn’t separate from many of our relationships, but it’s also big enough to be a category all its own. Love is the great engine behind hope, change, and joy. Love is sought after when it’s missing and is typically viewed as the single most important ingredient to a good life. We not only…

Continue Reading

Read more