We are not powerless over our addictions, nor are we helpless victims of heredity, a disease, a spiritual malady, or a slew of character defects that require the intervention of a "higher power," and a lifetime of meetings to control. Studies show that 75% of all addicts recover on their own, without pills, patches, rehabs, or self-help groups. How many people do you know who successfully quit smoking “cold turkey,” without artificial aids or programs, and nicotine is one of the most addictive substances on earth.
People can recover on their own because they find ways of addressing the learned aspects of addiction that are driven by our reward system. Almost any activity we find pleasurable, from eating a chocolate chip cookie to hearing great music or seeing a beautiful face, can activate the reward system. Once aroused, these circuits enable our brains to encode the circumstances that led to the pleasure, so we can repeat the behavior and the reward in the future.
Over time, the pleasure becomes misery, but we now have little choice but to continue because the behaviors and belief systems that drive our addiction have become well-learned, deeply ingrained habits. The journey to addiction begins with our receiving positive reinforcement from use of the drug - it makes us feel good, and ends with the “gotta have its” screaming in our ear. For some, it seems like a hopeless situation, but the vast majority of us find a solution to the problem, and so can you.
Just as we learn to become addicted, we can learn to make the necessary changes to our thoughts and beliefs that will relieve us of the burden of our addictions for a lifetime, not just a day-at-a-time. Powerless No Longer will help you learn to take advantage of your brain's natural ability to rewire itself, its neuroplasticity, to overcome your addictive behavior and reach your full potential.
Powerless No Longer is for anyone who is concerned about an addictive behavior problem and is looking for help deciding upon a course of action. The book introduces a newcomer to the science of addiction, the process of change, and specific methods and tools that offer a way out.
If you are questioning your own drug and alcohol use, or have tried 12-step programs and not succeeded, Powerless No Longer is for you. If you believe you are “powerless” over your addiction, you will see evidence proving that this is not true. Powerless explains the self-change methods that work for the majority of addicts who recover on their own, and shows you how to apply these principles in your own recovery. Powerless combines in one place:
- A detailed explanation of the bio/psycho/social aspects of addiction
- The research and studies that show how most people recover
- A comprehensive review of current recovery methods, and
- Suggestions you can use to take what's available and build a recovery program that fits your own needsPowerless No Longer doesn't claim to be one either. There are almost as many paths to successful recovery as people who have recovered, and no single group or method has the only ticket. However, there are certain commonalities in the methods used by study subjects who quit on their own, and a huge body of scientific evidence indicating what does work for most people most of the time. That's what you will find in Powerless No Longer-choices, not a rigid framework of inflexible dogma.
You do need to tap into a source of power and strength, but it isn't outside, it's internal. If you possess a genuine desire to effect self-change, you have within yourself all the power you need, and PNL can help you unlock it.
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- E. Delia
Introduced me to SMART recovery