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Tuesday, November 22, 2016

3 Habits of Grateful People

With Thanksgiving just a few days away, it’s a perfect time to take a look at how gratitude can play a positive role in your life – even after the leftovers are eaten and the family china is packed away. 

Being thankful for little things or “having an attitude of gratitude” has been touted by many 12-step advocates as a crucial step in addiction recovery. That’s because being grateful can help you stay on the path to sobriety by reminding you of all of the good things in life due to your recovery efforts. 

While it’s not always easy to be grateful, especially on those hard days when the smallest act seems like a huge hurdle, it is a skill that can be practiced and learned. There are even some daily habits that can help.
  1. Keep a gratitude journal. This is especially helpful for redirecting any negative thoughts and focusing on the small, positive gifts of life. Just be sure that you plan this activity into your daily day – whether you write for 15 minutes when you wake up or before you wind down for the night. 
  2. Spend time with loved ones. It may sound silly, but making a habit to spend quality time with those who love and support you will help you to become more thankful. Gratitude has been found to strengthen relationships, which is key during recovery. 
  3. Pay it forward. Volunteering has a host of benefits for your mental health, including decreased feelings of depression and increased overall well-being. Giving to others also has the power to make you feel more grateful – for what you have and who you are as a person.
Giving Thanks at Red Oak
The expansive, open spaces of The Willows at Red Oak Recovery® offer opportunities for our clients to spend the solitary time needed to reflect and to focus on how gratitude can play a key role in recovery from addiction. To learn more, call 866-831-9107.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

How to Become a Better Listener

Now that you’re in recovery, you have an incredible opportunity to make things right in your life, including repairing any relationships that may have been neglected during your addiction. A good starting point is to learn how to be an active listener. 

This simple yet overlooked skill will help you build rapport, understanding, and trust with the loved ones who will be by your side along your hard-won journey toward sobriety. Start by trying these tips for becoming a better listener: 

Do put down your cellphone. If you’re like most Americans – 92 percent according to the Pew Research Center -- not only do you own a mobile phone, but you often keep it within arm’s distance. Glancing at a recent text or checking your Facebook feed during a conversation with a loved one is not only rude but it sends a message that you are uninterested in what the other person has to say. It also prevents good eye contact, which is a crucial element in effective communication.

Do paraphrase (not parrot) what the person said. Every so often it’s helpful to repeat what you heard the person saying in your own words. This will show that you are listening and make sure there aren’t any misunderstandings along the way. 

Do acknowledge your loved one’s problems, issues, and feelings. You might say, for example, “I known this is a difficult issue and appreciate your willingness to talk about it with me.” This type of dialogue will show that you are listening openly and with empathy.

Don’t just wait for your turn to talk. Be mindful of the exchange. Even if you’re excited about the subject matter or feel the urge to interject, it’s important to slow yourself down and pay attention to what the other person is saying.  

Don’t discount the other person’s opinion. Instead, give your loved one space to share his or her perspective and try to absorb his or her point of view.

Addiction Help for Families
A strong factor in long-term recovery and increased, sustained success includes the entire family entering treatment. At Red Oak, we can help you explore your own journey while healing the connection between relationships. To learn more, call: 866-831-9107. 

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Smart Snacking for Better Recovery

Healthy snacking isn’t just smart, it’s also an essential part of your recovery plan. After all, proper nutrition is key to healing your body and mind from the damage of addiction. And staying properly nourished throughout the day will give you more energy and focus to complete recovery tasks and distinguish hunger cues from cravings. 

In general, it’s best to avoid processed, sugary foods, which could lead to a sugar addiction, or at the very least, an energy roller coaster. Instead, choose nutrient-rich foods and filling combos of protein and fiber. Here are some other smart snacking tips to follow. 

Snack for better energy. If you’re feeling super tired it may mean that your meal didn’t provide enough calories and that your body needs a snack. Fuel up on something with protein and fiber, like low-fat string cheese with whole-wheat crackers or turkey roll-ups wrapped in lettuce with apple slices.

Skip constant snacking. When you snack, you’re adding several mini meals to your regular sized meals. This isn’t the same as grazing, which means portioning your regular meals into smaller servings.

Avoid emotional snacking. It’s easy to turn to food when you're bored, sad, mad, or scared. Before you grab that snack, make sure you’re not eating to calm down or numb yourself from experiencing an emotion.

Snack mindfully. Your first step is to notice your triggers. For example, do you tend to reach for a sweet treat at 4 pm? If so, try changing this habit by drinking a glass of water first. If you’re still hungry, then go for a healthy alternative like banana slices with Nutella or plain Greek yogurt with berries. 

Think real food. Don’t grab processed junk but focus on the real stuff. Cut up an apple and serve it in a bowl so it feels like a treat. You can even add some almond butter for protein. Other options: sweet potato, avocado, carrot, hummus, or fruit and veggie smoothies. 

Nutritional Therapy at Red Oak
At Red Oak,
we value the importance that good health and eating habits have on a lasting and fulfilling recovery. Our nutritional therapy program, as part of our drug and alcohol treatment, educates and encourages our clients to make inspired choices in the food they eat. To learn more, call: 866-831-9107.

Thursday, November 3, 2016

4 Steps to Boost Your Self-Worth

Now more than ever is the perfect time to hone in on your self-worth and that means making conscious decisions to respect yourself and to enjoy your new, sober life. Here’s how to get started:

Step 1. Practice self-care. Your daily routine should include personal grooming (bathe, brush hair and teeth, and dress in clean clothing), proper nutrition, and exercise. Take an active role in prepping your meals, shopping for clothes, and finding a fun fitness routine that you can stick with. In addition, schedule those regular visits to the doctor and dentist. Now that you’re sober, staying healthy should be a top priority.

Step 2. Find time to relax and have sober fun. Recovery is hard work, but it’s also a time to discover new interests and hobbies that don’t involve alcohol or drugs.  Use this time to try something new: Take an adult class at your local community college; sign up for a yoga or Zumba class; join a group hike, community garden, or drama club. The possibilities are endless.

Step 3. Be grateful for each day. Making gratitude part of your daily routine can help you keep a healthy perspective and remind you that recovery is something to be thankful for.

Step 4. Accept and give support. You don’t have to endure recovery alone. Share your feelings and experiences with a trusted family member, addiction counselor or support group. You may find that supporting others in their recovery will help you along the journey, too.  

Supporting Your Recovery at Red Oak 
At Red Oak Recovery®, our comprehensive, clinically driven addiction programs helps clients rehabilitate their body, mind, and spirit. To learn more about how you or someone you love can start making behavioral changes and achieve long-term sobriety, call today: 866-831-9107.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

The Willows at Red Oak Recovery Expands

the willows at red oak recovery
Red Oak Recovery, a leading trauma Informed substance abuse and dual diagnosis treatment facility for young adults, announces the expansion of our gender separate women’s program, The Willows at Red Oak Recovery. 

This expansion will allows us to serve 18 women on a completely separate 38 acre campus located 25 minutes outside of downtown Asheville, NC. The Willows campus includes gorgeous long range mountain views, ponds, walking trails and gazebos.

In addition to our integrated clinical care model, we incorporate a 12 step philosophy, life skills and service work blended with adventure therapy such as canoeing, white water rafting, fly fishing and rock climbing so clients can learn to have fun in recovery.

The Willows at Red Oak Recovery incorporates our unique clinically sophisticated young adult model with Trauma Informed Treatment to develop a foundation for sustained recovery. For additional information, please visit our website at or call the admissions team at 866-831-9107