Sober Living: Honoring a New Kind of Hero in NY Next Month

Sober Living: Honoring a New Kind of Hero in NY Next Month | Transcend Recovery Community

Typically, when we think of heroes, we think of people who have achieved a heroic act, someone who has the traits and abilities others admire, someone who has lived through disastrous times, such as 9/11 or Hurricane Katrina.

Take for example 18-year old Ismael Jimenez, a student from Animo Inglewood Charter High School. In April 2014, a FedEx truck veered across Interstate 5 and headed into oncoming traffic. The FedEx truck and the charter bus Ismael and his peers were on collided. The fiery bus crash led to 5 student deaths, 3 adult chaperons, and the deaths of both drivers involved in the accident. One witness from the accident indicated that those emerging later from the bus were bruised and covered with blood but unaware that they had been injured because of the shock of the experience.

However, right after the collision, Jimenez, broke a window at the front of the bus as it was filling with smoke. People were getting burned from the heat and fire. Jimenez began to lift kids out in an effort to save them. However, in the end, he was one of the five students who lost their lives that day.

Certainly, the last few moments of his day were heroic, as he helped the other passengers to safety. Although we don’t know the precise medical details, it might be safe to say that he sacrificed his life for the sake of others. In some circles, this is the quintessential definition of a hero – someone who sacrifices something for the larger whole.

In general, a hero or heroine is defined as a person who is admired for his or her courage, outstanding achievements, and noble qualities. And like Jimenez, this is the kind of hero and heroine that’s being celebrated in New York City this summer. Like Jimenez who worked to save the lives of others, the heroes and heroines being celebrated this summer are those who are also working to save lives: their own.

Instead of lifting other people to safety, the heroic achievements of those in sober living are the heroes and heroines in the limelight this August, who are lifting their own lives to safety. Given the remarkable mountain that those with addictions must climb and the daunting task of breaking free of their past, they are indeed heroes and heroines! We might even see them as the stars of their community. They are the Heroes in Recovery working hard to transform their lives through sober living.

To celebrate these heroes and heroines, you can find community-gathering 6K races taking place around the country. And there’s one in New York City coming up soon:

Manhattan, New York City, Riverside Park on August 16, 2014

The New York event not only intends to bring the community together to break the social stigma of mental illness and addiction but also to raise funds for Xcel University. Xcel University advocates for mental health awareness and making quality mental health services to everyone. They are a voice for those in recovery, encouraging them to overcome obstacles and to participate in their recovery with commitment and conviction.

If you want to support the movement and lend a hand to those struggling with addiction, run in the race! You can find information about New York’s race here.  Help break the stigma of addiction by joining us!

Heroes in Recovery 6K in New York, NY
Riverside Park – 103 Street Promenade
August 16, 2014
Race begins at 8:30am!

And even if you’re not in a sober living program, if you simply want to honor those like Jimenez, who are working toward saving the life in themselves, come join us. All heroes and heroines are welcome!

 

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You can find me on Twitter via @RecoveryRobert
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The Razor’s Edge: Don’t Run Away, Run for Recovery Instead

The Razor's Edge: Don't Run Away, Run for Recovery Instead | Transcend Recovery Community

It’s easy to run away from a problem. It’s the effortless choice. It’s less complicated to stay numb to the problems we face. Besides, no one likes pain. It feels safer to stay comfortable.

Although it is disguised with discomfort and suffering, pain bears many blessings. When unwrapped, when finally faced, pain can lead to victory, to achievement, and to healing. It can lead to feeling like you are the hero or heroine of your life. Although you might want to run away, although you might want to look the other way, pain is a blessing in disguise.

But  you’ll have to cross the razor’s edge first. When you’re faced with the great challenge of living sober after years of addiction, when you’re faced with the tremendous climb of acquiring sober help after years of drinking and drug use, you might feel the sharp edges of pain. Yet, if you’re willing, for the sake of sober living, for the power of sobriety, peel each layer of pain back and see what’s underneath. You might find a core energy that lies within, a sort of nucleus holding an entire cluster of painful emotions, memories, thoughts, and images together. That energetic center is where one can find the gift within the suffering.

The razor’s edge is the great challenge you face when attempting to reach a higher state of consciousness. It is the tremendous obstacle to overcome before breaking through to long-term sober living. It’s difficult, but not impossible. In fact, this sort of breakthrough is a part of your heroic destiny.

Reaching your potential is always possible. Achieving sober living is right within your grasp. So if you find yourself running away from your addictions, problems, and destructive patterns, you should know that walking the razor’s edge isn’t as dangerous as it seems; it’s teeth are not as sharp as they appear. When you turn towards those problems, they will become less frightening and lose their power over you.

And when you finally make the scary but fulfilling decision to walk the razor’s edge and to face those problems head on, come run or walk a 6k race among other heroes and heroines just like you. Instead of running away from your addiction, run for recovery instead.

In fact, many communities around the nation are celebrating the heroic efforts of those with addictions, those who decided to get the help they need despite any feelings of shame. And it’s not just a celebration; it’s a movement to honor the heroes and heroines of addiction. Given the remarkable mountain that those with addictions must climb and the daunting task of breaking free of their past, they are indeed heroes and heroines! Communities are celebrating by coming together to raise money through a 6K walk or run.

For example, the run in New York City takes place in Riverside Park on August 16, 2014. The New York event not only intends to bring the community together to break the social stigma of mental illness and addiction but also to raise funds for Xcel University. Xcel University advocates for mental health awareness and making quality mental health services to everyone. They are a voice for those in recovery, encouraging them to overcome obstacles and to participate in their recovery with commitment and conviction. If you want to support the movement and lend a hand to those struggling with addiction, run in the race! You can find information about New York’s race HERE.  Help yourself and others become heroes and heroines too!

Heroes in Recovery 6K in New York, NY
Riverside Park – 103 Street Promenade
August 16, 2014
Race begins at 8:30 AM!

If you are reading this on any blog other than Transcend Recovery Community or via
my RSS Feed, it is stolen content without credit.
You can find me on Twitter via @RecoveryRobert
Come and visit our blog at http://TranscendRecoveryCommunity.com/blog

Break the Stigma of Addiction with Heroes in Recovery

Break the Stigma of Addiction with Heroes in Recovery | Transcend Recovery Community

Mention to a friend or co-worker that you take psychotropic medication, and you’ll likely be judged for it. Talk to most anyone in the general public about your stay at a sober living community, and it’s quite possible you’ll be quietly criticized.

Our society has a hard time with areas of life it doesn’t understand, and the health of the mind is one of them. In fact, society is so outward focused and centered on instantly gratifying physical needs that the health of the mind and spirit too frequently get ignored. It’s clear that mental illness, including alcohol and drug addiction, continues to carry a strong stigma.

And stigmas only make the road to long-term recovery longer. In fact, for many men and women, the label of being an addict has kept them out of treatment altogether. In recent years, this has been especially true for women. According to Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), approximately 2.7 million women in the United States, many of whom do not receive treatment because their social roles as mothers and nurturers. Seeking treatment would highlight the stigma of substance abuse in their families and communities. The shame that comes with admitting drug use often gets in the way of tending to their addiction, even if it becomes destructive.

Clearly, most people don’t like to be labeled. And sadly, many people perpetuate labeling by referring to others in ways that are belittling, such as “Joe is an addict”. However, just opposite is actually true. Joe is not the addiction itself. He is a human being with feelings, thoughts, aspirations, dreams, and hopes, just like everyone else. He happens to have a mental illness, and with the right treatment, it can be managed and not become an obstacle to reaching those hopes and dreams.

In fact, we might even see Joe as a Hero. A hero or heroine is defined as a person who is admired for his or her courage, outstanding achievements, and noble qualities. Given the remarkable mountain that those with addictions must climb and the daunting task of breaking free of their past, they are indeed heroes and heroines! We might even see them as the stars of their community. The stars of Hollywood and New York City aren’t those we see in the movies; they are the Heroes in Recovery working hard to transform their lives.

In fact, many communities around the nation are celebrating the heroic efforts of those with addictions, those who decide to get the help they need despite any feelings of shame. And it’s not just a celebration; it’s a movement – a movement to break the stigma of recovery.

To further this movement and to celebrate the heroes and heroines, you can find community-gathering 6K races taking place around the country. For example, the New York Heroes 6K takes place at Riverside Park on August 16, 2014. The New York event not only intends to bring the community together to break the social stigma of mental illness and addiction but also to raise funds for Xcel University.

 

If you are reading this on any blog other than Transcend Recovery Community or via
my RSS Feed, it is stolen content without credit.
You can find me on Twitter via @RecoveryRobert
Come and visit our blog at http://TranscendRecoveryCommunity.com/blog

Sober Living & the Significance of Exercise in Recovery

Sober Living & the Significance of Exercise in Recovery | Transcend Recovery Community

Traditionally, recovery has been focused on getting sober, and it should be! However, in recent years, the journey towards sober living has begun to include additional treatment methods and take on a holistic approach. Recovery has begun to tend to a recovering addict’s other areas of life such as emotional, spiritual, and physical. In addiction to detoxification, recovery might also include ways to reduce stress, improve well being, and find a sense of personal balance.

In fact, the word recovery comes from a late Middle English word denoting restoration; it means to get back or return. A person in recovery likely wants to return to a state of well being where there is no longer an addiction, and more importantly, where there are no longer the circumstances that led to the addiction in the first place.

As a way to provide restorative and healing environments, more and more sober living homes and treatment facilities are offering holistic services. According to The Free Dictionary holistic care is: “a system of comprehensive or total patient care that considers the physical, emotional, social, economic, and spiritual needs of the person; his or her response to illness; and the effect of the illness on the ability to meet self-care needs.”

In order to address all the aspects of an adolescent’s recovery process – physical, physiological, emotional, psychological, and spiritual – a holistic drug treatment center might include much more than drug counseling, therapy, family therapy, support groups, life skill groups, and other sober living approaches. To address various aspects of growth towards sobriety, a holistic drug rehab center might also include:

  • Massage
  • Yoga
  • Acupuncture
  • Nutrition Counseling
  • Reiki
  • Equine Therapy
  • Sweat Lodges
  • Adventure Therapy
  • Organic Food Choices
  • Sauna Use
  • Spiritual Exploration and Study
  • Physical Exercise

 

The last point has become particularly important in recovery and it’s affect on overall mental health. Physical activity can release endorphins, which alone help to boost positive feelings. Exercise can also help with the health of the brain, including making new neural connections, which alone can facilitate enduring change. Furthermore, to experience these benefits from exercise, you don’t have to run three miles a day; simply taking a walk regularly can boost mental health. However, if you’re up for a greater challenge, and you want to show your support for others in recovery, then consider walking or running the New York Heroes 6K. This August, the opportunity to run a 6K marathon beckons you. For anyone interested in supporting the recovery community nationwide and who wants to implement more exercise in their life, this event is meant to bring the community together to:

  • Break the stigma of mental illness and addiction.
  • Celebrate the heroes and heroines of recovery.
  • Raise money for Xcel University, an educational organization for children and adults, advocating higher education, mental health awareness, and quality mental health services for everyone.

The run begins at New York City’s Riverside Park at 103rd Street Promenade and takes runners throughout the city. Registration begins at 7:30am and the race starts at 8:30! And you can expect prizes, awards, and post-race nutrition to rejuvenate your body.

And if you can’t make it to the race, consider including exercise, yoga, and meditation in your recovery process. It may just bring you closer to long-term sober living.

 

If you are reading this on any blog other than Transcend Recovery Community or via
my RSS Feed, it is stolen content without credit.
You can find me on Twitter via @RecoveryRobert
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Introducing the New York Heroes in Recovery 6K! Join the Movement

Introducing the New York Heroes in Recovery 6K | Transcend Recovery Community

Yes, you saw that right! It’s a 6K Marathon, not the usual 5K. But there’s a reason for that. You see, the Heroes in Recovery 6K is a run/walk in New York, NY is a special event to celebrate the men and women who are overcoming alcohol and drug addiction.

Anyone working to free himself or herself from an addiction are reaching for their independence from the past and seeking a long-term sober way of life. Yet, after treatment and upon returning home, often, they must do that in the midst of old family dynamics, messages from the media to drink, the desire to have fun with old friends, and the lingering needs that pulled them into using in the first place. Saying no to drinking or using drugs in the face of all this is the mountain they must climb. This is the great odyssey they must go on.

For this reason, we might look at those recovering from addictions as heroes and heroines. They are fighting a great battle – themselves – and often, when they surrender, they are in that fight until the end. With weapons of hope, commitment, and self-reflection, they are breaking through the cycle of addiction towards change.

Now, take a look at the word HEROES and you might see why the race is 6K instead of 5K. If you want to express your admiration for these heroes, if you want to show your support, or if you’re a recovering addict yourself, run a mile for every letter in that word!

In New York City, this August, the opportunity to run a 6K marathon beckons you. For anyone interested in becoming a hero or heroine themselves, this event is meant to bring the community together to:

  • Break the stigma of mental illness and addiction.
  • Celebrate the heroes and heroines of recovery.
  • Raise money for Xcel University, an educational organization for children and adults, advocating higher education, mental health awareness, and quality mental health services for everyone.

The run begins at New York City’s Riverside Park at 103rd Street Promenade and takes runners throughout the city. Registration begins at 7:30am and the race starts at 8:30! And you can expect prizes, awards, and post-race nutrition to rejuvenate your body.

In fact, speaking of nutrition, perhaps the exercise alone might call you. More and more holistically oriented sober living homes and recovery treatment centers are recognizing the need to provide holistic services.

In order to address all the aspects of the recovery process – physical, physiological, emotional, psychological, and spiritual – a holistic drug treatment center and sober living house might include much more than drug counseling, therapy, family therapy, support groups, and life skill groups. To address other aspects of recovery, a holistic drug rehab center might also include:

  • Massage
  • Yoga
  • Acupuncture
  • Nutrition Counseling
  • Reiki
  • Equine Therapy
  • Sweat Lodges
  • Adventure Therapy
  • Organic Food Choices
  • Sauna Use
  • Spiritual Exploration and Study
  • Physical Exercise

These holistic healing methods are meant to facilitate deeper insight into the choices recovery addicts are making and have been making for their life. They are meant to encourage connection with a core self.

Although the 6K run might not be the place to connect with your deepest inner being, but connect with the community, with your body, and with fun. Connect with the purpose and passion of finally finding sobriety. Help break the stigma associated with addiction and mental illness and run the New York Heroes 6K!

 

If you are reading this on any blog other than Transcend Recovery Community or via
my RSS Feed, it is stolen content without credit.
You can find me on Twitter via @RecoveryRobert
Come and visit our blog at http://TranscendRecoveryCommunity.com/blog