Articles for Individuals

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No Pain, No Gain

People don’t use substances because they’re crazy. People don’t use substances because they’re bad people. People use substances because they get something they like, or want, or need out of it. As human animals, the things we do are motivated by what happens next: we repeat or increase our behavior if something good happens. These

Finding Your True North

If you’ve ever used a compass, you know that the little metal pointer inside is always pointing north. This is how people throughout time have been able to find their way through the wilderness. If you know where north is, you can orient yourself and get where you want to go. Even in the most

This is Your Brain on Drugs

For many people, there is an iconic commercial from the 1980’s about the influence of drugs on your brain. A man holds an egg, which is meant to represent your brain, has a hot skillet, which represents drugs, and he cracks the egg into the pan, which begins to sizzle and cook as he says

Holiday Planning and Coping

The holidays are back! And, just like every year, they can be alive with joy, friends and family, and a whole slew of issues to navigate. Conversations about politics, too much time with extended family, endless holiday parties and constant advertisements for drinks and jolly times, can make the holidays a difficult time for everyone.

3 Truths About Change

If you or someone you love struggles with substances, how you understand the problem matters a lot! If you approach it from the perspective that substance problems are the result of a weak will, a shaky moral compass or an innate set of character flaws, you are going to face unnecessary obstacles like shame and

Shedding Light on Shame

Sometimes it’s a small nagging voice, “I shouldn’t be drinking so much” or “I know I’m gaining weight and should go on a diet”. Sometimes it’s a thundering judge, “I have completely screwed up my life” or “I’ve spent all my money on gambling, what kind of person does that?!?!” If you are trying to

Can Our Words Impact Change?

Human language is an amazing thing. We humans have become the top of the food chain mainly because we can communicate effectively enough to work together efficiently. We accomplish much of this work through our use of language. In an effort to be efficient however, we have created many language-based “short-cuts” and words end up