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Self-Improvement

Addiction, Self-Improvement

10 Ways to Overcome Symptoms of Depression

By Jennifer McDougall

Depression affects millions of people across the world; of all ages. In many cases, those who suffer from depression also suffer from anxiety disorders, as well as, drug and alcohol addictions. It is not uncommon for those suffering from depression symptoms to turn to drugs and alcohol as a way to temporarily numb the pain and regain a pinch of satisfaction. The problem with this type of outlet is that it tends to lead to an array of health problems, emotional stress, loss of clarity and mental focus, as well as financial and relationship trouble.

When someone is feeling depressed they may not reach out immediately for help or want to talk about what is causing them to feel alone and hopeless. There are many situations and circumstances that can cause a person to feel this way. It could be due to loosing a job, breakup, financial struggle, loss of a loved one, poor diet, lack of exercise and outdoor activity, or major change at home or work. They may not feel like they add up to the expectations drawn out for them. Without supportive friends and family members, many of the difficulties we face in life tend to be much more challenging.

Many of us go through certain phases in life; we experience changes in our relationships, finances, and careers. Through those changes it is important to remain focused on our goals so that we don’t get overwhelmed with the “what if’s”, “why not’s”, “how come’s” and “what now.”

It is not uncommon for someone to experience symptoms of depression a few times throughout their lives. What matters most is what to look out for and know how to treat these symptoms before things take a downward spiral towards physical harm, addiction, or suicide.

Here are a several signs that you or someone you care about is suffering with depression.

  • An overwhelming sense of sadness
  • Loss of concentration and interest
  • On-going negative thoughts and comments
  • Excessive drinking or use of drugs
  • Aggression or reckless behavior
  • Too little or too much sleep
  • Little to no motivation or enthusiasm
  • Extreme changes in appetite
  • Suicidal thoughts or remarks

Depression is not something to ever feel ashamed of. It affects millions of people who have managed to overcome the symptoms and go on to live a happy and healthy life. Here are 10 ways to overcome the dark dreary symptoms of depression.

  1. Connect with friends and family who help motivate and support you in a positive way.
  2. Get 8 hours of sleep.
  3. Drink plenty of water.
  4. Meditate
  5. Eat healthy.
  6. Avoid drugs and alcohol.
  7. Add lighting and spruce up your living space.
  8. Journal your thoughts, ideas, and day-to-day experiences.
  9. Watch feel-good or funny movies.
  10. Change up your worn out routine.

Call Passages Addiction Treatment Centers today if you or a loved one is battling an addiction to drugs and/or alcohol. Our admissions department is available 24/7 and can be reached directly by calling our toll-free number at (888) 397-0112. We look forward to speaking with you soon.

Passages, Where Addiction Ends and Life Begins™

Follow Passages Malibu on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

 

Image via We Heart It

Self-Improvement

Defeating Negative Energy

By Jennifer McDougall

Does it feel like something in the air is weighing you down? When you are around a particular person or a particular crowd, do you leave feeling drained and unable to stand? These are only a couple signs that negative energy is consuming your physical and mental being. Unfortunately, for many of us there is not much we can change about our situations or the people we are forced to interact with.

The good news is that we can change how we react to negative energy. The way we do that is by practicing a few techniques that strengthen our minds to be free or negative thoughts, and teach our bodies to fight off negative energy from affecting our moods and productivity.

Have you ever heard the quote, “You can’t live a positive life with a negative mind?” Well, that is very true. To control your thoughts you must be conscious of everything that enters your mind. The second you begin thinking something negative, correct yourself with a positive thought. Conditioning your mind to process only positive thoughts will not only change your life, but it will make you an overall happier person.

Here are 10 things you can start doing today to practice eliminating negativity from your life.

  1. Distance yourself from people who drag you down.
  2. Frown less and smile more.
  3. Rise and shine with a grateful heart.
  4. Get at least 30 minutes of exercise a day.
  5. Drink plenty of water (6-8 cups per day).
  6. Look on the bright side of every situation. Try to find the good in all that happens.

“When a problem or a difficult situation arises, say to yourself, as if you already believed it: “This is for my benefit.” –Chris Prentiss, Be Who You Want Have What You Want (p.32)

  1. Don’t compare yourself to other people. Always aim to be your most authentic self. When we compare our lives to other’s we lose focus on everything that we have to be grateful for because we are too busy looking at everything we think we want instead.
  2. Invest time in creative hobbies, such as: photography, painting or drawing, writing, crafts, gardening, reading, cooking, outdoor sports, dancing, or playing an instrument.
  3. Embrace life- all of the obstacles and opportunities. Be bold and courageous in everything you do so that you can grow and your mind can continue to expand with blossoming thoughts and ideas.
  4. Stay humble. Those who get a little hot-headed tend to think they are better than other people. They tend to say things that are insulting and hurtful to others, maybe without realizing it.

Recommend reading: Zen and the Art of Happiness

Call Passages Addiction Treatment Centers today if you or a loved one is battling an addiction to drugs and/or alcohol. Our admissions department is available 24/7 and can be reached directly by calling our toll-free number at (888) 397-0112. We look forward to speaking with you soon.

Passages, Where Addiction Ends and Life Begins™

Follow Passages Malibu on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Image via We Heart It

Recovery, Self-Improvement

How to Discover Your Life’s Purpose

By Jennifer McDougall

 

Many of us ask ourselves this simple question, “What was I put on this earth to do?” The answer is different for every person. What we do- which direction we decide to take is purely up to us. No one can decide where our future lies besides our own individual selves.

When we take a step back and look at our lives, we see an array of choices that have lead us to this exact point. In every moment we breathe, think, and live in a reality we create for ourselves. If you find yourself unhappy and losing focus on the things that bring you joy, you may need to re-center your energy into what it is that you were put on this earth to do.

Through our skills and talents there lies something very special within every one of us that we were created to share with the world.

Many of us have often felt lost and confused. We have been in the middle of a cold fog without a clue of where to go next. With technology being the leader in our day to day lives, it’s no wonder why many of us feel overwhelmed with the amount of opportunities and choices available to us. Now more than ever we have the power to choose where we live, who we marry, if we marry, how far we travel, what we drive, wear, eat, and do.

People all across the world have the luxury of having so many options and choices they can make. The downside of that is no one can seem to decide what it is they want to do with their lives.  That is why it is important to set your sights on the things that bring you the most happiness and fulfillment at the end of each and every day.

For some, it is creating works of art that opens the eyes of others to see a perspective on something that is so abstract and brilliant that it changes the way people see the world. For others, it’s running a successful empire that conducts business in such a way that has never been done before.  There are those who hope to advocate for a nonprofit organization and help save the lives of people in less fortunate circumstances.

Finding your life purpose is a process that you should not hesitate to aim for. Read these 5 simple tips that will help you narrow down what it is that you were created to do here on earth.

  1. Write down the top 10 things you enjoy doing the most outside of work.

Think of what makes you smile the most. Ask yourself what causes you care most about? If you could teach something, what would it be? Dig deep and find what matters most to you.

  1. Use exercise and meditation to gain mental clarity.

Being active is a good way to clear your mind. It is also a great way to see where your mind wanders when you’re not busy working on other things. More importantly, it will help you preserve balance in times of excitement and distress.

  1. Listen to what other people say about your strengths and weaknesses.

They have the insight to see what best suits your abilities, personality, and skills.

  1. Embrace moments of solitude.

Put your cell phone away for at least an hour every night, and disconnect from the world and chaotic things happening outside the four walls that surround you.

  1. Find what brings you true inspiration.

It could be music, a specific person, an activity, or a book. Whatever it is that reveals inspirational qualities specifically for you is what your subconscious mind feeds from. That is the heart of your soul’s wish. That is what you should pay close attention to.

 

Call Passages Addiction Treatment Centers today if you or a loved one is battling an addiction to drugs and/or alcohol. Our admissions department is available 24/7 and can be reached directly by calling our toll-free number at (888) 397-0112. We look forward to speaking with you soon.

Passages, Where Addiction Ends and Life Begins™

Follow Passages Malibu on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Also read: Life Purpose Counseling at Passages Malibu.

 

Photo via We Heart It

Alcohol Addiction, Alcohol Rehab, Passages Malibu, Rehab, Self-Improvement

10 Good Reasons Its Time to Quit Drinking Alcohol

By Jennifer McDougall

Besides not waking up with a painful headache and a list of regrets from the night before there are several other reasons to quit drinking alcohol. The amount of damage alcohol does to your body should be enough reason to avoid alcohol altogether, but for many it’s not.

What if I told you that your overall quality of life would dramatically improve with the absence of alcohol? Within weeks you could see increased productivity at work and more money in the bank. Do I have your attention? Okay, good.

If you are unsure whether or not you should quit drinking, here are a few clues to help you see that this is without a doubt the right move for you.

  • If you find yourself drinking alone more than three nights a week.
  • If you are lying to others about your drinking habits.
  • If you have a reckless attitude which leads you to driving under the influence.
  • If you wake up with one-too-many moral hangovers full of shame and regret.
  • If your relationships are falling apart because of your intoxicated behaviors.
  • If your job or career is suffering due to the lack of arriving on time, preforming tasks that are expected of you and failure to follow through on ideas and promises.
  • If your self-esteem is at rock bottom because you no longer see yourself as someone who is making good decisions and prospering in life.
  • If you start fights while your intoxicated and cause unnecessary drama that end up making you look ridiculous.
  • If someone mentions to you that it’s time to give up your drinking habits.
  • If you have increased anxiety and body aches.
  • If your face begins to appear more puffy than usual.
  • If your doctor suggests you dry up and get sober due to health concerns.
  • If you have to ask yourself if 10 am is too early to start drinking.

Now that you’ve established the fact that this habit is making your life more and more unbearable it’s time to look at the benefits of putting down the bottle. Keep in mind there are more than just 10 benefits, but these are the ones we think are the most important.

  1. To promote a healthier brain and liver.
  2. Increase your energy level.
  3. Save a lot more money for valuable things that actually matter and are worth investing in.
  4. You will boost your levels of creativity.
  5. Improve your overall complexion.
  6. Wake up earlier feeling refreshed and more energized.
  7. Gain mental clarity- say goodbye to a cloudy mind.
  8. You will feel empowered to make the most out of life and help other people.
  9. You will feel much happier and self-confident.
  10. Will have more time for productive and exciting hobbies.

 

Call Passages Addiction Treatment Centers today if you or a loved one is battling an addiction to drugs and/or alcohol. Our admissions department is available 24/7 and can be reached directly by calling our toll-free number at (888) 397-0112. We look forward to speaking with you soon.

Passages, Where Addiction Ends and Life Begins™

Follow Passages Malibu on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Image via We Heart It

Recovery, Self-Improvement, Sober Lifestyle

How Yoga Can Help in Recovery

By Jennifer McDougall

Whether it is Bikram, Hatha, Power, or Yin yoga there are several benefits you should know. Starting or ending the day with any type of yoga practice is one of the best ways to be sure your body receives the proper amount of daily exercise. Yoga consists of a variety of poses that promote relaxation, full body circulation, flexibility, weight loss, and helps to increase muscle tone and strength.

Years of prolonged drug and alcohol abuse will cause your body to deteriorate. Lack of exercise, an unhealthy diet, and the constant bombardment of toxins cause a multitude of health problems. Passages Malibu offers many indoor and outdoor exercise programs to combat the effects of drug use on the body.

One of the many holistic methods that we offer is yoga. This treatment is a positive, calming technique to begin steadily reversing the negative effects of drug and alcohol use. When combined with our nutrition counseling and physical training, yoga is sure to place you back on the path to healing. As one of the many substance abuse treatment methods we utilize at Passages Malibu, yoga stretches the muscles and soft tissues in your body and releases the lactic acids that build up in the joints and cause stiffness, pain, and fatigue.

After several yoga sessions you will start to experience a better range of motion, giving you a sense of ease and fluidity. Your muscles will start to strengthen, including your heart, and you will also notice an improvement in your cardio performance. Here are just some of the benefits to practicing yoga.

 

  1. Helps you be more self aware
  2. Improves your inner strength
  3. Decreases your blood pressure
  4. Increases your blood flow
  5. Give you a more positive perspective on life
  6. Helps you gain focus
  7. Improves your balance
  8. Relaxes your racing mind
  9. Clears and strengthens your lungs and respiratory system
  10. Releases tension through your entire body
  11. Strengthens your immune system
  12. Boosts your confidence and self esteem
  13. Reliefs your body of aches and pains
  14. Improves your quality of sleep
  15. Decreases your level of stress
  16. Improves your posture
  17. Aligns your spine and gives your back more support
  18. Eases headaches and migraines

 

Call Passages Addiction Treatment Centers today if you or a loved one is battling an addiction to drugs and/or alcohol. Our admissions department is available 24/7 and can be reached directly by calling our toll-free number at (888) 397-0112. We look forward to speaking with you soon.

Passages, Where Addiction Ends and Life Begins™

Follow Passages Malibu on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Also see: Yoga, Relaxation, and Drug Treatment

 

Call Passages Addiction Treatment Center today if you or a loved one is battling an addiction to drugs and/or alcohol. Our admissions department is available 24/7 and can be reached directly by dialing our toll-free number at (888) 397-0112. We look forward to speaking with you soon.

Image via We Heart It

Addiction, Passages Malibu, Self-Improvement, Teen Addiction

Prevention Starts at Home: 6 Ways to Protect Your Children from Drug and Alcohol Abuse

By Jennifer McDougall

Being the parent to a child of any age can be challenging at times and there are all kinds of things parents worry about, but one very common worry is keeping your child safe from drugs and alcohol. Preventing your child from being exposed to things that could potentially be dangerous is difficult, but it can be done by giving them the tools they need in order to know how to deal with certain situations they may encounter down the road. Here are 6 ways you can start today.

Gain and Maintain Respect From Your Child

A large number of teenagers have said that one of the main reasons they don’t use drugs or alcohol is because they do not want to lose the respect of their parents. You can do this by keeping balance in your relationship with your son or daughter. Know when to be their friend, and know when to lay down the law and be the parent. If your child is too afraid to come talk to you about certain issues they are dealing with they are more likely to turn to substances to escape their discomfort and problems.

Set a Reasonable Curfew

Growing up my parents always told me, “Nothing good happens after midnight.” I still believe this to be true, and growing up I know that it kept me out of a lot of trouble. In high school it was, “Be home by 10 pm.” After I graduated and still lived under their roof, the rule was to always be home by midnight. For many parents it can difficult to get a child to obey by the rules you set for them, but with the help of technology parents can call and text their child’s phone to check in and remind them of the guidelines set in place for them.

Be a Good Example

If you do not want to your child to grow up and drink at an early age, or ever, your best bet is to eliminate alcohol from the house. Don’t do something you wouldn’t want your child to do. Be the example of what you expect them to be instead of living by the motto, “Do as I say, not as I do.” Children watch very closely to what his or her parent is doing. They follow in our footsteps and learn from the moves we make. Try to be alert when your children are present so they can grow up to be strong individuals who have healthy habits and a stable mentality.

Family Dinners

Sitting down as a family at the end of the day to share a meal and talk about your thoughts, challenges, and accomplishments makes it nice- knowing you have people to lean on and talk to. Family dinners are also a good time to learn about what’s going on in your child or teenager’s life. It’s important as a parent to know some of what they are experiencing and know how much you love and support them. This is also a time they can feed off off of your knowledge and wisdom, helping them make smarter choices.

Get involved in school and community events

Children and teenagers who are involved in recreational sporting programs tend to have more confidence and learn a vast variety of skills that can play a major role in their character and academic success. Have a  conversation with your son or daughter about enrolling in a local sporting team or community event to help them step outside of their comfort zone and get more involved with those in their age range.

Educate Your Children on Drugs & Alcohol

Make it known what the dangers and effects are of using drugs and alcohol. Let them know what to look out for and be cautiously aware when they are with friends or other adults. They may have already been taught a few things in school, but it’s important that you instill the warning signs and dangers in their mind so they will be careful and alert. Make it clear that you are always just a call away if they are ever in a bad situation and need to come home.

 

Call Passages Addiction Treatment Centers today if you or a loved one is battling an addiction to drugs and/or alcohol. Our admissions department is available 24/7 and can be reached directly by calling our toll-free number at (888) 397-0112. We look forward to speaking with you soon.

Passages, Where Addiction Ends and Life Begins™

Photo via We Heart It 

Recovery, Self-Improvement

10 Ways to Set Realistic Goals

By Jennifer McDougall

Goal setting can sometimes feel tricky if you are not someone who sets goals regularly, or who has had little to no training or instruction on how to set the best possible goals for yourself. When someone asks you, “Where do you see yourself in five years?” What do you say? What comes to mind? If you do not have a clear vision on what you want in life, this question will not only be difficult to answer, but it can make you feel lost in life.

Keep in mind that you have the power within you to create your own journey. At any moment you can change the direction of your personal journey and you can do so effectively by setting logical and realistic goals for yourself. Even if you do not see immediate results or you find yourself having difficulty accomplishing your goals, it is important to keep in mind that even small accomplishments will pay off in the long run, and will help you get what you most want out of life.

Why Set Goals?

Setting short and long term goals make it possible for an individual to create a vision of where they want to be and visualize what they want to accomplish. Goal setting is an important process in being sure you accomplish the things you want to do in life. Doing so will stop you from feeling like you are not doing anything with your life. With each accomplishment you will be reminded of your inner strength to achieve your dreams, no matter how big or little.

10 Ways To Set Goals:

  1. Create a simple, organized, and specific list of short term and long term goals.
  2. Write in a journal and keep track of your daily accomplishments. Also, use it as a way to clear your mind and gather your thoughts.
  3. Create a weekly action plan with the top 6 items you want/need to accomplish within a 7 day period.
  4. Create a monthly action plan categorized by project type. Keep this list simple and logical. Think of the effort and amount of time each task will take you to accomplish. Choose 3-4 items for every project category.
  5. Share your personal goals with friends and family. Share your professional goals with your boss or manager so they can help give you the support and guidance you will need to succeed.
  6. Follow up on your weekly, monthly, and yearly goals. Feel free to make changes and adjust your goals along the way. As life and situations change, so do our goals.
  7. Reward yourself with a gift or a break from work to have some fun when you accomplish any and every goal.
  8. Keep a to-do list nearby at work and at home to remind you of things you need and tasks you need to complete within a given time.
  9. Get outside and exercise. This will help clear your mind from any blockage. It is also a great form of therapy that will help you get creative with fresh ideas. You may find that you also come up with a way to better strategize or solve a complicated problem.
  10. Separate what is important and what is distracting.

Questions To Ask Yourself About Your Goals:

  • Career – Where would I like to be in my career in the next 3 years? What do I enjoy doing the most when I’m not at work? How can I incorporate that into my job and create a career that I will be happy with?
  • Money- How can I better manage my finances and save money? What can I cut from my monthly budget to feel more comfortable financially? Are the investments I’m making smart or am I being too risky and being poorly influenced?
  • Education- When was the last time I read a book? What class would I like to sign up for to continue my education? Which subject best interests me? Are there currently any online classes available to sign up for?
  • Family- How solid is my relationship with my family? Is there a particular relationship or bond that I would like to improve with a family member? When was the last time I called my mother/father/brother/sister/grandmother/grandfather? Do I make my family proud? Does my spouse feel loved? Am I giving my children the best possible care?
  • Creative/Artistic- What do I want to create? When did I last write a letter or a poem? Have I created or listened to a new playlist recently? Have I taken any photos recently? Where am I most creatively challenged? What form of art eases my mind, releases my tension, and brings me the most joy?
  • Behavior- What habit do I wish to give up the most? What is something that I do on a regular basis that makes me unhappy? Is there a habit I continue to do that is holding me back? Do I feel jealous of others? Would others consider me to be angry or happy? What do I do that I wouldn’t want someone else to know about?
  • Physical- Am I exercising at least 3 times a week? Do I feel healthy? When was the last time I received a physical from a professional physician? Am I emotionally stable, or does my mental health sometimes concern me? When I wake up in the morning do I feel refreshed or sluggish? Am I going to sleep at a decent hour? Do I feel challenged? Is something or someone in my life draining my energy?
  • Pleasure- Does my life bring me more joy than sadness? Am I happy with my career? Do my relationships bring me joy or heartache? Am I having fun with life or am I taking everything too seriously? What are my plans this weekend to have fun? What is something I’ve always dreamed of doing but I haven’t done? Am I exploring the places around me? Where would I like to vacation next?
  • Public Service- What can I do to be a service to those in need? Is there volunteer work available at night or on the weekend that I could sign up for? When was the last time I donated a pile of clothes or even a pair of shoes to a charity or someone less fortunate than myself? When was the last time I stopped talking about my own problems are started listening to a friend? Do I smile at strangers or do I look away?

Call Passages Addiction Treatment Centers today if you or a loved one is battling an addiction to drugs and/or alcohol. Our admissions department is available 24/7 and can be reached directly by calling our toll-free number at (888) 397-0112. We look forward to speaking with you soon.

Passages, Where Addiction Ends and Life Begins™

Image via We Heart It

Self-Improvement

20 Ways to Improve Your Self-Image

By Jennifer McDougall

Often times, people who have a poor body image also have a lower self-esteem which can cause them to turn to drugs or alcohol to feel better about themselves. It might stem from childhood bullying or any type of abuse – mental, physical, or emotional – as a child or adult, but poor body image can also arise from comparing oneself to the images we see in the media, in film, on TV, or in magazines.

Thoughts of inferiority can consume and warp your mind, and the beliefs you hold on to may get in the way of feeling confident. If you want to feel good about yourself and look fearlessly into the mirror without a hateful thought or feeling of disgust, I recommend you read the following tips I have for you. No matter where you are coming from or what your past looks like, remember that you are unique, you are beautiful, and no one can ever take that away from you.

  1. Stop comparing yourself to others.
  2. Be consciously aware of your thoughts and personal beliefs.
  3. Forgive yourself and others immediately.
  4. Work on your posture.
  5. Improve your daily hygiene.
  6. Step up your style and dress nicely.
  7. Block out negativity. Filter your mind and life of all negative matter.
  8. Adjust your mindset. Think optimistically and positively about every situation.
  9. Get in a healthy routine of exercising.
  10. Speak up yourself. Stop letting other people walk on you or talk over you. Let your thoughts and ideas be heard.
  11. Sing out loud. Hear your own voice as your sing the lyrics to your favorite songs.
  12. Let go of every unrealistic expectation you have for yourself.
  13. Get outside and appreciate your surroundings. Allow your heart to feel full with gratitude.
  14. Set goals for yourself (See: 10 Ways to Set Realistic Goals)
  15. Laugh more
  16. Stop dwelling on things that don’t go the way you planned. Remember that everything that happens to you is for your ultimate benefit.
  17. Volunteer your time to a good cause.
  18. Put hard work and honesty into everything you devote your time and energy to.
  19. Talk to someone you can trust and open up to. Discuss your thoughts and feelings. Confess your current struggles and ask for advice.
  20. Stop feeling guilty about things that are out of your control. You should really stop blaming yourself for everything. Let go of that guilty feeling in the pit of your stomach and move forward with strength and courage.

Make peace with the reflection in the mirror and see yourself transform.

bravestrongsmart

Photo Credit: Jennifer McDougall

Featured photo: We Heart It

Passages Malibu, Recovery, Self-Improvement, Sober Lifestyle

Tips for Staying Sober During the Holidays

By Jennifer McDougall

 

1. PLAN THE DAY/NIGHT

There is no need to feel obligated to attend every party that you’re invited to. Find the crowd who is most sympathetic to the healthier choices you’ve made and stick with those friends. Attend the party with someone you trust.

2. CONNECT WITH FAMILY

Supportive family members can offer positive reinforcement at difficult times. Remember that just because someone is related to you, doesn’t necessarily make them supportive.  Surround yourself with people who bring out your best self and never judge you for the choices you’ve made.

3. PRACTICE THE PHRASE, “NO, THANK YOU.”

Sometimes those who are unaware of our sobriety put pressure on us to use addictive substances, thinking it will help us “have more fun”. You already know that you don’t need drugs or alcohol to have a better time. The best way to feel more comfortable in these types of situations is to practice saying, “No, thank you.” Don’t think twice about what anyone is going to think of you or say about you for turning down an offer to use addictive substances. Choosing to live a life free of addictive substances is a wise choice and you will feel stronger the more comfortable you feel saying “No, thank you.”

4. HAVE AN EXIT STRATEGY

It helps to drive yourself to wherever it is that you’re going. If you are going to attend an event with a friend or family member be sure to talk to them beforehand and agree to leave if and when the other person is ready to leave.  You will need a backup plan just in case the other person bails on you. Keep a clever excuse, or escape route in your back pocket to get out of an escalating situation. Talk to a close friend who is not attending that event and will be nearby and let them know where you will be in case you need a close contact to come to your rescue. Also, keep your phone and phone charger on you throughout the night.

5. START A NEW TRADITION

Allow yourself to celebrate the holidays in ways that distance you from your old habits. It’s your life, remember that. Live it in a way that allows you to thrive, grow, and feel free of anything and everything holding you back from living the life you’ve always imagined.

 

Call Passages Addiction Treatment Centers today if you or a loved one is battling an addiction to drugs and/or alcohol. Our admissions department is available 24/7 and can be reached directly by calling our toll-free number at (888) 397-0112. We look forward to speaking with you soon.

Passages, Where Addiction Ends and Life Begins™

Follow Passages Malibu on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Image via We Heart It

Recovery, Self-Improvement

10 Ways to Build Courage

By Jennifer McDougall

Wouldn’t it be great if fear would just get out of the way so that we could make the moves we spend hours daydreaming about? Well, I have 10 suggestions that will help you overcome the fear and anxiety that is holding you back from living a courageous life.

Courage- Mark Twain

1. Identify what is you are afraid of.

2. Practice doing things you haven’t done before. This will help you become more bold in your actions and will open you up to new ideas and perspectives.

“Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.”- Neale Donald Walsch

3. Visit somewhere you have never been before. Take a different route home from work.

4. Speak from the heart.

5. Stand up for someone. It could be a total stranger or your best friend.

6. Express yourself with your style. Dress how you feel. Wear what you want. Use your personal style as a form of art to express yourself.

7. Trust yourself.

8. Know that no matter the outcome, what happens is exactly what is meant to happen. The universe makes no mistakes.

9. Try out new restaurants you don’t usually go to.

10. Admit when you are wrong.

 

Call us today at: (888) 397-0112.

 

Images via We Heart It

Recovery, Self-Improvement, Sober Lifestyle, Spirituality

5 Types of Meditation Practices

By Jennifer McDougall

Our day-to-day lives are often times very busy, and our minds become extremely scattered if we do not take the time to relax and let go of our worries and stress. All it takes is 10 to 15 minutes in a quiet place to ease tension and achieve a sense of peacefulness and mental clarity. Meditation is the key to balancing your mind, body, and spirit. Below are 5 types of meditations you can begin doing today.

Before you get started, find a quiet place in your home, your backyard, or even under a shady tree in your favorite park. Sit in a comfortable seated position – it can be a simple, crossed-leg style, half lotus, or full lotus. Rest your hands on your knees either palms facing up if you’re looking to receive energy or palms facing down if you’re looking to be more grounded. Some practice with their fingers in the “gian mudra” position where your index fingers and thumbs touch to make an O shape. Do what feels comfortable for you.

1. Focused Meditation:

Calm your thoughts and focus on one thing. Eyes may be open or closed.

2. Mindfulness Meditation:

Attention on abdomen when breathing and/or on the awareness of your breath.

3. Body Scan Meditation:

Take three deep breaths. Close your eyes. Start from the top and slowly (mentally) scan down your body, and notice pain and tension at each point you reach. Be aware of what you feel and let the pain and tension dissolve as you continue downward through your body.

4. Mantra Meditation:

A mantra is a sacred sound, syllable, or groups of words that are repeated several times during mediation that have psychological and spiritual power.

5. Chakra Meditation:

Chakras are energy points that are centrally located in the subtle body. During this type of meditation you will focus on one chakra at a time. This also includes incorporating a bit of mantra meditation into the mix.

 

Check out Chris Prentiss’ “Meditation on the Perfect You” for a powerful, guided meditation that will help you transform into the person you have always dreamed to be.

 

Image via We Heart It

Relationships, Self-Improvement

Are Your Influences Lifting You Up or Dragging You Down?

By Jennifer McDougall

 

How we feel and the circumstances of our lives can depend a lot on who we choose to surround ourselves with. The crucial question is asking yourself whether or not the people in your life (right now) are actually lifting you up and inspiring you, or are they dragging you down, complicating your life and putting you in dangerous or uncomfortable situations?

Take a moment and reflect on recent events with a friend or family member and find out whether or not they are lifting you up or bringing you down. Ask yourself these following questions to help make it clear in your mind if these influences are for your best interest, or the worst for your personal well-being.

  1. Do you feel inspired with new thoughts and ideas after spending time with this person, or do you feel drained and tired just from being around them?
  2. Do they listen to you as you speak, or do they interrupt you without hearing what you have to say?
  3. Do you trust this person, or do you feel uneasy about opening up to them because you fear they may use what you say to them against you to benefit themselves in one way or another?
  4. Do they compliment you on simple things and make you feel worthy, or do they belittle you making you feel like you’re not good enough, smart enough, or good looking enough?
  5. Do you feel safe around this person, or do they put you in uncomfortable and dangerous situations?
  6. Have you actually wondered why you continue to involve this person in your life because they don’t bring you much joy, or offer any kind of fun, excitement, or wisdom…?
  7. Do you feel a bit manipulated or disrespected by this person or this group of people?

 

After answering these questions and keeping a specific person, or group in mind, it should be clear to you who is lifting you up and who is dragging you down. The truth is that we all have someone in our lives that drag us down. The best way you can make life more enjoyable, peaceful, and less problematic is by distancing yourself from these people, and the situations they create.

 

Call Passages Addiction Treatment Center at (888) 397-0112, for information about getting the treatment you need for a drug or alcohol related addiction today.

 

Image via We Heart It