Addiction and Recovery News and Reads Around The Web…

Hello, Recovery Friends and Welcome New Friends!


This past week I have had some interesting email newsletters from some of my favorite recovery websites and magazines. Now I am a big FAN of helping others who write informative and interesting articles about many issues of addiction, mental health and more. And I happen to read two articles I feel need to be shared here on my blog as they are very important issues. The first hit me because one of the underlying issues of WHY I had turned to gambling was to “cope and escape” from my hurtful pain and my past childhood trauma. As we learn to do the “inner work” of our recovery, many us find many issues and roots to our addictions.

The second article is about an actor I enjoyed watching the TV Series; “True Blood” and is a warning to those recovering from alcoholism that if you have other health problems, you need to work with your doctor and be honest with them of all that is going with you or you CAN have complications. That is what happened to 39-year-old, Actor, Nelsan Ellis as you will read. We need to learn to take care of our health as we most likely neglected it for a long period of time within our addiction. It is always sad to lose someone so young and vibrant. I hope you enjoy reading these and learn a little something from them…
( Articles Courtesy of “The Fix Mag” and website: SoberRecovery” )
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By Victoria Kim 07/11/17

The beloved actor’s family issued a statement about his battle with addiction as “a cautionary tale” to help others.

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Actor Nelsan Ellis died of heart failure over the weekend after attempting to quit alcohol on his own and heart failure complications.

Rather than shy away from the impact that years of substance use had on the actor, instead his family shared the details surrounding his death…

“Nelsan has suffered from drug and alcohol abuse for years,” the actor’s manager said on behalf of the family.

“After many stints in rehab, Nelsan attempted to withdraw from alcohol on his own. According to his father, during his withdrawal from alcohol he had a blood infection, his kidneys shut down, his liver was swollen, his blood pressure plummeted, and his dear sweet heart raced out of control.

On the morning of Saturday, July 8th, after four days in Woodhull Hospital, Nelsan was pronounced dead. Nelsan was a gentle, generous and kind soul…Nelsan was ashamed of his addiction and thus was reluctant to talk about it during his life. His family, however, believes that in death he would want his life to serve as a cautionary tale in an attempt to help others.”

The 39-year-old hailed from Illinois and was a graduate of the prestigious Juilliard School. He was known for playing the lovable Lafayette Reynolds on True Blood and Bobby Byrd in the James Brown biopic Get on Up, as well as his roles in The SoloistThe Help, and The Butler.

The symptoms/severity of alcohol withdrawal varies by person but can be fatal for some. Symptoms can range from mild insomnia to delirium tremens (DTs) and even death.

Symptoms of alcohol withdrawal include elevated blood pressure, excessive sweating and shaking, irritability, anxiety, agitation, seizures, and hallucinations.

In severe cases, individuals may experience delirium tremens (DTs), characterized by disorientation, severe agitation, rapid heartbeat, high blood pressure, and fever. DTs may last up to 3 or 4 days, according to Dr. Richard Saitz in “Introduction to Alcohol Withdrawal,” a paper published on the website of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA).

According to Saitz, “about 5% of patients who experience DTs die from metabolic or cardiovascular complications, trauma or infections.”

One should never detox from alcohol alone. A person going through withdrawal should be monitored by a medical professional.

– The Fix

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THREE STEPS to HEAL FROM Emotional Abuse
By Dominica Applegate Jul 11, 2017 – Sober Recovery

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Emotional abuse is a tragic occurrence that can turn even the happiest person into a sad and hopeless shadow. Sadly, it happens more often than we think. It can be anything from psychological abuse, which can cause anxiety, depression or post-traumatic stress disorder, to physical abuse, which can be experienced anytime during childhood or adulthood. After going through any traumatic event, it can be very difficult to cope with the unresolved wounds alone. Some people turn to drinking and drugging for temporary relief from the painful feelings, but that simply masks a much larger problem that needs to be contended with.

To help you start the process of healing, here are 3 pivotal steps you’ll have to take in order to properly deal with emotional distress.

1. Recognize the Root Issues

When you’re dealing with emotions that include depression, intense anger, high anxiety and extreme fear, it is important to get to the root issue of the matter and take steps to address it. Many times, those who’ve experienced abuse in their childhood have difficulty associating their current pain and substance abuse with old childhood wounds. Thus, it may benefit them to reach out for help via counseling12-Step groups or a rehab facility, which can help them recognize, process and put these deep rooted issues to rest.

2. Take Responsibility

Many of us have gone through something traumatic in life, and the negative emotions that come along with these experiences are understandable. However, there needs to be a point in time for the person going through these hard feelings to start taking responsibility for their own healing. The process of mending themselves from the inside begins when one makes the conscious decision that they are done being locked in their own prison cell of negative emotions.

3. Facilitate Emotional Healing

There are various therapy treatments for emotional abuse. If you’re dealing with emotional and substance abuse issues, you’ll have to tackle your addiction first. Being under the influence will just make it harder to heal old wounds.

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Once addiction recovery measures are in place, you can then look into some of the most popular modes of therapy that may help in your recovery:

  • Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT): This therapy is known for its cognitive aspects of dealing with trauma as it targets your thoughts and feelings about past experiences. Its goal is to eliminate the negative emotions you have and replace them with a positive mindset.
  • Somatic Therapy: For a more holistic approach, it may be important to undergo therapy that contends with the physiological effects of trauma. Somatic therapy works by helping your body recognize and release the pent-up energy that has accumulated since the trauma occurred. Unlike CBT, it’s not so much about one’s cognitive responses but instead, how the body (the nervous system, in particular) dealt with the trauma. This type of therapy allows the body to heal itself by facilitating a physiological release of blocked energy so you can feel physically freed.
  • Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT): This is a psychological acupressure technique recognized to help trauma survivors disassociate from old wounds so they can heal. Also known as “Tapping,” EFT involves literally tapping on certain locations in the body while repeating a positive affirmation out loud. It is currently used by many therapists in the world and is continually gaining more popularity.

Sometimes, trauma can take a real hit on your emotional well-being and affect your entire life, leaving some of us in the depths of addiction in search for a temporary relief. The therapy options mentioned above are just a few of the many avenues you can explore in order to heal from emotional abuse. Although it’s easier said than done, the one true way out of the situation and into emotional freedom comes with the decision to ask for help—and there are plenty of professionals available to walk you through it.

– Sober Recovery

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“Shared and Presented By Recovery Starts Here!”  ~  Author, Catherine Lyon

 

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“We Can Learn from Others Recovery Journey. A Little of Mine” . . . .

“When we do the inner work within ourselves and begin to clean out the “soul” is when our recovery really takes hold.”   ~Catherine Townsend-Lyon

“I am a dual-diagnosed person who lives in recovery from gambling addiction and has mental health challenges. It can make obtaining and stay in recovery a wee bit more work, as I discovered.”

My recovery journey first started in 2002 and reset in 2006. Both times I woke up in a hospital as the result of another failed suicide attempt and then went back to an addiction and mental health crisis center for a 14-day stay. In 2002 I was diagnosed with mental health disorders while in the middle of a full-blown gambling addiction. I was suffering from bipolar manic depression, PTSD, and OCD from past childhood trauma and abuse, and today, still manic depression and agoraphobia.

Then again in 2006, another breakdown, but this time the problem wasn’t that I gambled again and relapsed; the problem was not taking my psych medications for a few weeks. I thought I didn’t need them; that I could be “normal” like everyone else around me, but as you read my story, you’ll see that didn’t work out too well.

I had a few severe financial crises happen, and since I had not taken my medication and had depleted all of my savings, I panicked and chose to steal from someone. What a mess? No excuses, just insights. Of course, they pressed charges. I was arrested, went through the courts and was sentenced to many hours of community service, two years of probation and paid restitution that I’m still paying today. My point?

You have to do the work in all areas of your recovery, including your finances. Even though I was not gambling, my financial and legal troubles told me I still needed to work with a gambling addiction specialist. After my problems had occurred, I worked with a recovery expert for a year while I went through the legal mess I created. Why am I sharing this? Our stories and words of our “character defects” can be powerful tools to help others.

After my second suicide attempt and crisis, I learned I did not have a balanced recovery; and seemed had more work to do. I learned that God, my higher power, had bigger plans for me, a purpose for me that involves helping those reaching out for recovery. After I was released from the crisis center in 2006 and started working with a gambling/mental health specialist and got my mental health under control, I began to see the stigma surrounding those of us who live in recovery. Those of us who have a mental illness have a huge hurdle in our path.

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I am a dual-diagnosed person who lives in recovery and has mental health challenges. It can make obtaining recovery a wee bit more work, as I discovered. I had picked up nasty habits, behaviors, and diseased thinking within my addiction that needed more correcting. Working with the gambling specialist was eye opening. He helped me break down the cycle of the addiction, and we also worked with tools and skills for dealing with financial problems that may arise while in recovery. I’d been given a relapse prevention workbook, and although I didn’t relapse into gambling, the book has helped me develop a plan for any financial or life event that may arise during my recovery journey. You need a plan before life events come.

Another tool that helped was journaling every day. I have always done this, but my specialist showed me how to relieve stress and learn more from my journaling. My journals were a guide with help in writing my current published book. Writing my story and experiences in memoir form was a very healing process for me.

I shared my gambling addiction and alcohol abuse, my past childhood abuse and sexual trauma and what it is like living with mental illness. I never dreamed I would be a published author, recovery advocate, freelance writer and blogger, but these are just a few of the recovery blessings I have received in my journey thus far.

By publishing my book and sharing it with the world, I hope to shatter stigma around gambling addiction, recovery, and mental health. I want to be a voice for those who are childhood sex abuse survivors. Through my book and my recovery blog, I have chosen not to be anonymous. I want others to know how devastating compulsive gambling addiction is and how quickly one can become addicted when using it for all the wrong reasons. It truly is a real disease and illness. I want others to be informed and educated, and I raise awareness of the effects it has on our communities, family, and our lives. This also goes with mental health and those who suffer from its many forms.

The public needs to understand with the expansion of casinos and state lotteries, it is making gambling more and more accessible today and is now touching our youth. Currently, 1% of our population are problem gamblers. Through my recovery, I have learned many lessons.

The best advice I can give?

When starting recovery learn about this addiction. Work with a specialist or recovery coach to learn the “cycle” and then learn the tools and skills to interrupt it. Work a steady, balanced recovery that encompasses mind, body, spirit and finances. There are many ways to recover including in or outpatient treatment and 12-step meetings. Anything and everything you can find? Do it. Only one option may not be enough for success in long-term recovery. Unfortunately, I learned this the hard way in early recovery before that little “Lightbulb” above my head went off!

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Now that I have reached TEN years in recovery from gambling addiction and alcohol abuse, I know it is my job, my duty, to be of recovery service to others. Life today is good! My husband and I learned we can now weather any storm together. I’m proud that my book;
“Addicted to Dimes, Confessions of a Liar and a Cheat” has done so well and has opened doors for me to share what I have learned. I advocate and share as much as I can with others. It is to prove we can recover from this insidious addiction.

And I do this in many ways and many platforms, like “Keys To Recovery Newspaper” which is a free publication, Gambling Blogger at Addictionland” and for “In Recovery Magazine & Column The Author’s Cafe”. As we are now hearing more and more people today with “dual diagnosis” and seems to be more common.

With a high percentage of people relapsing after rehab or treatment, I wanted, and my readers asked me, to share how to attain the first year of recovery. I also share this on my recovery journal in blog form. So my second book I am working on now is about just that. How to make that first year in recovery. All I can urge others to do is never give up. You are worth a better life in recovery. Sharing our experiences and our recovery story with others is just as important as the professional or clinical side of how to recover. Sharing one’s story is a powerful tool for others to listen to and learn.

My last tip is to do something for your recovery each day like I do with writing and sharing my “testimony” anywhere I can to raise awareness and educate the public. It will help keep you in recovery, and you won’t ever become complacent in your journey. So, let me pose this question and open up a “Comments Dialogue” .  .  .

“What do you do to stay in RECOVERY”???

 

I wish you all a successful and learning recovery journey!

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Author/Columnist, Catherine Townsend-Lyon  🙂  XoXo

“Featured Press Release & Article By Author, Scott Stevens The Alcohol Expert”

“Featured Press Release & Article By Author, Scott Stevens The Alcohol Expert”

Hello, and Welcome Recovery Friends!

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“What do you do when you or a loved one has an alcohol problem? You get these fantastic books by The Alcohol Expert! Congrats to Author, Scott Stevens for a media press release of his award-winning books on alcoholism, stigma and much more.”

APRIL is Alcohol Awareness Month and Scott will be helping many I am sure with his new book release!
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Scott Stevens
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Alcohol Awareness Month prelude: Six signs of the alcopocalypse …
(Burlington, WI – March 4, 2016)
As a prelude to April’s observance of Alcohol Awareness Month, health journalist and recovery author, Scott Stevens, has posted the “Six signs the next 10 yrs. for alcohol biz will be like the last 20 for tobacco.” The article acknowledges no prohibition is on the horizon, and alcohol manufacturers will remain profitable just as Big Tobacco remains solvent, but a sea change will make the next decade look different when it comes to the choice to drink.

“America is driven by freedom to make choices,” says Stevens, “Even when they’re unanimously unhealthy, and alcohol won’t stop being the drug of choice for the stressed or the celebrating. However, the writing on the wall says, ‘What causes problems, is one,’ and the writing is ominous for the nearly free-flow of alcohol.”

Here are the six signs detailed in the March 4, 4,000-word article on addictedminds.com and alcohologist.com: 

1. Healthcare costs continue to rise, forcing a focus on cost-drivers.

2. Productivity weakens, forcing a focus on cost-drivers.

3. More long-term health consequences from moderate drinking coming to light… while more ‘benefits’ of drinking are being debunked.

4. More attention is being paid to impacts of alcohol advertising on youth.

5. Drinking and driving abatement has stalled.

6. Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders have eclipsed autism in many of cases and in long-term costs per case.

The author of three alcoholism recovery books also is launching a month-long video series of 26 two-minute episodes of The A-Files airing throughout Alcohol Awareness Month on social media and various websites. The episodes are alphabetical, A-Z, each covering one health topic associated with moderate alcohol use, not just the disease of alcoholism. Established in 1987, Alcohol Awareness Month is observed each April to increase awareness and understanding of alcohol, alcoholism, and recovery.

Of the “six signs” article, Stevens says, “When the tables turned on tobacco, public education increased and dipped down into the earliest grades, advertising was severely restricted and the industry bristled under public regulation rather than the old-boy-network of self-policing to which it have become accustomed. Predictably, as these six trends come into greater public focus, the alcohol industry will face the same scrutiny and restrictions as the manufacture, marketing, and sales of tobacco have. And predictably, people will still drink.
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The Alcohology app, The A-Files and this article, hopefully, add to the dialogue about why we drink a toxin and known carcinogen.”

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About The Author and Alcohologist:

Scott Stevens is the award-winning author of What the Early Worm Gets, Every Silver Lining Has a Cloud, and Adding Fire to the Fuel. He’s among the Founding Influencers of the world’s largest medical portal, HealthTap, and serves as a representative of concierge treatment pioneer, Tailored Transitions, and the Public Relations Officer for treatment marketer, Addicted Minds & Associates.

For more information, visit  www.alcohologist.com or  Addicted Minds & Associates  … You can Email Author, Scott Stevens for Interviews and Article Requests at LyonMedia@aol.com

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Presented By “Recovery Starts Here” of Author, Catherine Lyon. 

Yes, I’m Finally Back On The Internet! So How Was Your Recovery Summer? Mine Was Awesome!

Hello Recovery Friends & Welcome All,

 

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Recovery Is A Choice ~ And You Have To Want Your Life Back!

I’ve been off the grid for a week or so, as it was time for me to get out of the house and try some of the life skills I’ve learned to manage my disorder of agoraphobia, and getting a little taste of what the State of Arizona has to offer. I spent some wonderful days with my hubby as we went up North to Sedona and the Grand Canyon. I thought “Gods” country was only in the State of Oregon, but I was so wrong! It was so beautiful at both places. We stopped in Prescott to see my husbands sister’s old house they had built, and had raised their kids in. She had passed away a year ago due to intentional drug suicide of her psych-meds. We are still in a bit of shock over this a year later, but it brought back special memories for my husband of her, and we miss her so very much.

So I thought I would share how my summer and early fall has been, and what all I have been up to. On the personal side, I have started the phase of my Bipolar and Depression meds being changed. I had another full physical, and my liver count and cholesterol was to high. My psychiatrist thinks I have been on a couple my bipolar meds for to long, as psych meds can contribute to this problem. It’s why they do blood tests on me every 6 months. See, it can be pretty challenging to have to deal with all this when living in recovery, and having mental/emotional health problems. If I was still gambling and drinking, I wouldn’t be in the frame of mind to care about my health over all. That’s another area addictions will take away from you.
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I’m also back in therapy for a while for some PTSD problems again. For some reason I’m having bad dreams again of my childhood abuse and trauma. I have been doing a lot of finishing touch’s on my next follow-up book from ~ “Addicted To Dimes” ( Confessions of a Liar and a Cheat ),  http://www.amazon.com/dp/0984478485/
So I’m wondering if it isn’t from that, as I have revisited some of my past hurt with writing my new book.
It’s why it is so important to have a well-balanced recovery to help you be strong over coming the rough spots of life, because for me, relapse is not an option, even though I will always be one bet away from devastation, recovery for me will be a life long journey. But I never thought I would not only get a second chance at life, but an even better life then before I became an addict!
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Now, about my work and recovery side of this past summer, it was  filled with some exciting new ‘Guest Recovery Author’ radio shows. The first was on CL Gammon’s ‘Blog Talk Radio’ show, http://clgammon.webs.com/  and my favorite radio show I’ve done a few months ago was on ‘Peoples Internet Radio’ ~ Cancel The Cabal, by host: Stephen Roberts.  It was a 2 hour live stream interview on several broadcasts. We had many listeners as far away as the UK, Scotland, and Ireland! We also ahd callers and people on Facebook & Twitter asking me questions about my book, my recovery, and more.
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Here is the ‘Podcast Link’ if you’d like to here the whole interview: Addicted to Dimes (Confessions of a Liar and a Cheat) Author Catherine Townsend Lyon  … Stephen and I talked about many aspects of gambling addiction, problem gambling, expansion of gambling Casinos and State Lotteries. From government making profits, to fill budget short falls, to how addicted gambling impacts our communities negatively. I shared a little of my book and story of how gambling addiction and alcohol abuse cost me way more than the money, it almost cost me my life! And I happily shot down all the myths of the detox and recovery treatment process one goes through when staring recovery. How to stay away from relapse, and much more! Those 2 hours just flew on by!
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Also this summer, I hosted my  recovery #Addictionchat I attend on Twitter 2 times this summer. Many of us in recovery, or work in the addiction and recovery fields come and talk about addiction and recovery from all types of addictions through our twitter accounts. It’s how we inform, educate, and raise awareness about all addictions.
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We decided not to take the summer off , and it was a lot of fun hosting. And yes, of course my topics were about problem and addicted gambling, and what helps me stay in recovery. So all my recovery friends & readers who visit are welcome to join us if your on Twitter. We meet every Wed night on for an hour-long Q & A session.
The times are 7 pm MST,  6pm PT, and  9pm ET …. It’s through Twitters TweetChat service link: http://tweetchat.com/ This is an easy live stream feed.
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Another important activity I continue is my recovery journey as a  ‘Guest Blogger’ at Addictionland. It was started by Founder & Author, Cate Stevens. And  her new book also has released, and is available on Amazon Books, Barnes & Nobel Books, and on her helpful recovery/addiction website. There are many well-known guest recovery bloggers who share their experiences, strength and hope.
You can visit both and subscribe to any blog that you find helpful. Here is my blog link there: http://www.addictionland.com/kitcatlyon/ Becoming a member is free too!.

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ABOUT CATE STEVEN’S BOOK:In this memoir, an upper middle class girl voted best looking and most likely to succeed develops and overcomes multiple, life threatening addictions. Addicts struggling to get help because of the stigma of addiction will connect to these powerful vignettes. Available Now!  Get the Book.  …
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Now my next project was very exciting, and an honor to be interviewed, and be included in as well. It’s a well written, well-rounded, and well researched article about problem and addicted gambling’s cost to our public heaths in our states, which became a major media release article from Columbia University, NYC. It was researched and written by: Elaine Meyer, of the Epidemiology Dept. of Public Health there at the University. There were many wonderful, important contributors that were interviewed by Elaine.

She not only shared part of my story in her article, but she also shared my direct book link to Amazon too! Among those interviewed and shared beside myself were,  Arnie & Sheila Wexler & Associates, Les Bernal of Stop Predatory Gambling, and many more. Arnie himself has been on many major news broadcasts like, 60 Minutes, ABC’s Nightline to names a few. It was picked up by many national newspapers as well. It’s a fascinating, in-depth look into the gambling industry.

The title and link: Gambling with America’s Health?  It looks at all angles of how problem & addicted gambling has on our public health systems, costs, negative impacts on our population and local communities, and how now it’s even ‘touching’ our High School & College young adults.
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AUTHOR BIO

Elaine Meyer

Elaine Meyer has worked as a journalist covering education and legal news. She graduated in 2009 with an M.S. from Columbia School of Journalism and is currently the associate director of communications for Columbia’s Department of Epidemiology, where she carries out the department’s mission of translating public health science to the larger public. Follow her on Twitter  @emeyer5 …

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Now my next fun project was just resent.  I was given an exciting opportunity to write for the fine folks at Florida Beach Rehab and Treatment Center. They have an In Depth section of many helpful articles to read, and how others come share their addiction and recovery stories to others who visit their site. Welcome to Florida Beach Rehab, an addiction treatment center: http://www.floridabeachrehab.com   It is a great place to get clean and sober. They have excellent service for those who have dual diagnosis like myself when I first sought treatment for gambling addiction and alcohol.

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They have asked if I’d like to write and share my story of addiction, dual diagnosis in both addictions and battle behavioral and mental/emotional illness. It can make recovery a wee bit harder to overcome addiction, but it’s one of the area’s the helpful folks here at Florida Beach Rehab can help you with.
My first article just so happens to be about this very topic; “How Behavioral Health Has Helped My Recovery” (the article link):
http://www.floridabeachrehab.com/how-behavioral-health-has-helped-my-recovery/
So I appreciated the invite to write and share my experiences with them on their website. Give them a call if you or a loved one needs help with addictions at: 1-877-593-5545, and they are located at: 4005 North Highway A1A  Hutchinson Island, Fort Pierce, FL  34949 … And you just never know? There just might be more articles to come.

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Also this past summer, I began to really open up more, and have embraced more about my mental/emotional health issues. I got the chance to meet more new friends in recovery, and other new friends who also suffer with mental and emotional health and disorders. I’ve also done more work with others who have been through childhood trauma and abuse like myself. There are many wonderful websites and support groups out there to help. But the stigma around all these important issues is still huge. But for me, it’s important to let others know they do have a voice, and they are not alone, just like those in recovery from addictions.

So that’s pretty much what I have been up to this past summer and early fall. With my next book offerings, I have book 2 completed, and almost ready for publishing. Here is a Sneak Peek as the title will be, … (drum roll), LOL.
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“I’m nobody, but I have something to say Damn It”!
(How to recover from gambling addiction, live with mental illness, and how to process childhood trauma).

Your thoughts on my book title?
My current book also has recieved more 5 Star Amazon Reviews to this summer.
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Lastly, I have started a new venture in Book & Social Media Promotions on my new WordPress blog: http://anAuthorandWriterinProgress.wordpress.com
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I offer affordable book and social media promoting services, and represent several fine authors. Come by and meet some pretty wonderful authors and their reads. I’m adding more interesting pages to this blog often. I even share my book reviews there too! So if you or someone you know has a book out, or one coming out soon? Please share my Lyon Book & Social Media Promotions blog, and have them check out my services page. I’ll make you and your book shine across the worldwide web.
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So now I have shared all my recovery news, author and writer goings on this past summer, early fall.
So, …  how about telling me about yours? What did you do this past summer?

 

Much Happiness & Blessings Friends,
Author, Catherine Townsend-Lyon
http://www.amazon.com/dp/0984478485