Alcohol addiction – Heed the signs

Alcoholism is a deadly disease. It so main stream media acceptable these days that many don’t even realize the lives lost daily due to this deadly disease.

It not only destroys the abuser, but in some instances the entire family unit.

It is a disorder of physical and psychological dependence on alcohol daily or binging on a regular basis.

It can be a gradual progression, and the individual is not heeding the warning signs. When the threshold is passed, unfortunately, there is no going back.
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How Much Alcohol is too Much?

How Much Alcohol is too Much?

How Much Alcohol is too Much? – Source www.cdc.gov

This is a question that almost everyone from college students to lawyers (and everyone in between) ask themselves at some point.  It is a very difficult question to answer, and honestly the answer will be different for each person and each situation.

A 100 pound girl can handle much less than a 250 pound grown man.  How much is okay at a bar with your friends is very different from what might be okay at your conservative grandmother’s 65 birthday party (maybe none is best).

Different cultures also have varying views on alcohol.  Europe tends to have a slightly gentler view of alcohol consumption than the United States.  The easiest approach to answering this question for you and your life style is by examining how your life is affected by it.
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Addiction: Friends and Family

Worried about family or friends?

Worried about family or friends?

Addiction is different for everyone, so there is no easy way to tell if someone you care for is struggling with drug use.

Just because a loved one is struggling with substance abuse does not mean the need to go to rehab, either.

Simply talking to your loved one may help.  There are both physical and emotional signs of addiction, so simply paying attention may cue you to your loved one’s need for help.
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Addiction Therapy: Sometimes You Have to Go Away to Find Yourself

Addiction is not an easy problem to deal with. More often than not, it is something that drives a wedge between families and relationships. If you’re lucky, you still have something to save after everything has returned to normal. Most people don’t and will have to start life over by themselves.

The many faces of addiction

When it comes to addiction, the most common type that people are aware of is drug addiction. Substance abuse numbers continue to climb every year and there is no age range or rank that is spared from its ravages. Mothers have lost children to drug addition and many more children have lost their parents to this. After drugs, alcohol also ranks a close second. The problem with addiction to alcohol and drugs is that it alters the person’s mind and renders his perception of reality distorted. Some people become paranoid and some completely unable to relate to other people. The sad part about this is that the addicts hurt their family members or loved ones in multiple ways – financially, emotionally and sometimes even physically.

Besides these two, there are other prevalent forms of addiction. Gambling and sex are two close runner ups, while the Internet is not far behind. Gambling addiction is a big problem because a person with an addiction problem often squanders his or her fortunes away. When he has lost everything, he will be willing to beg or steal just to support his habit. This has left a trail of divorces, family dramas, as well as lawsuits.

The Internet on the other hand, is a new player on the list but the levels are nonetheless alarming. Internet addiction is rampant among children, teens and young adults primarily because of social media. You’ll find them on YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and other kinds of platforms that claim to keep them in touch with their friends and family members. However, it has come to a point that some people spend most of their waking hours online – not working, but just doing odd things that actually keep them from performing their day-to-day functions. The result of Internet addiction is that it actually cripples a person’s ability to relate with real people face to face. All they can do is hit “Like” or “Share” online, but when it comes to building an actual personal relationship with them, they can no longer do that.

What to to do about addiction?

Therapy and rehab are two ugly words when it comes to addiction treatment. However, sometimes there is really no other choice but to leave your family and friends and go somewhere to start fresh and heal. I know people who live in Alabama and rent an apartment at these Oxford apartments simply because no one there knows them or their history with addiction. They stay there for the duration of their treatment and while there they receive therapy and counseling – either alone or through their support group.

While in the process of getting cleaned up, some patients find that engaging in a hobby can do wonders. Women take up knitting, baking or painting while the guys find that working with their hands helps to keep their mind occupied. Some of them call these plumbers at C Mac Plumbing and learn from the work that they do so they can replicate it at home.

Going away is often necessary to find yourself and rebuild your life after a bout with addiction. It is not something that you should be ashamed of. You need to love yourself first before you can let other people back in.

More Productive Ways to Get Around Addiction

Addiction is something that’s not to be taken lightly. It affects millions of people every year and has destroyed more homes and families than anything else. The problem with addiction is that it takes a whole lifetime to work out of. A former addict can not claim to be completely cured in just six months’ time. The rehab process may take that long, yes, but the battle continues daily after the person has been discharged. One of the major challenges is going back to the daily routine or the daily grind, so to speak.

It is often difficult to simply go back to work or school and be reminded of everything that has triggered the addiction in the first place. A lot of people choose to start their lives anew and go away to a different place where no one knows them or of the problems they have had.  Most experts agree that this is the best way to start – fresh; however, this brings the person away from his or her friends and family, which is really needed as a support.

After the treatment or rehab, the patient should continue to attend counseling and therapy. The good thing is that it is easy to find support groups such as AA anywhere in the US. There’s likely a chapter or small group in the area you are in. Meetings are held on a regular basis and new or younger members are assigned seniors to mentor them or check on them. They also make sure that they have the contact information of family members or friends in case anything happens to the recovering patient.

Besides work or school, other activities are also encouraged to give the recovering patient more chances of staying sober or away from gambling (or any kind of addiction).  Sports have always been a top choice because of its ability to train the mind and body. Physical activity also releases endorphins and other happy hormones, which improve a person’s disposition and attitude.  Going to the gym can be one form but engaging in competitive sports such as soccer, basketball or even golf is also encouraged. The interaction with other people helps immensely in making the person feel accountable for his or her actions – so the less likely they are to fall off the program.

There are epic soccer training videos (click here to see example) to get people started on the right track. One does not have to be an expert immediately nor does it have to be on a competitive level. Always remember to put on protective gear and sunscreen before going out in the sun. At the end of the day, it will also be healthy to add some anti-aging cream to keep the skin from forming wrinkles and lines. Lifecell skin care works (click on link for more information) for anyone, especially for recovering alcoholics. Addiction often takes its toll on a person’s skin and makes him or her look older than their actual age because of dehydration. The cream has been known to work on lines, wrinkles, age spots and sunspots.

Getting back on one’s feet is not easy especially after an ordeal as going through rehab or therapy. The point is to take everything one day at a time and engage in activities that will take the person far away from bad, old habits.

Tips for Middle-Aged Recovering Addicts

Studies have shown that depression affects people between the ages 35 to 50 even more than those in the younger age brackets. This is not surprising seeing as middle-aged men and women encounter stressors left and right at home and at work. Also, this is also about the time when individuals encounter what they call a "mid-life crisis". Some handle it well but sadly, others succumb to alcoholism or drug addiction because they can't handle the stress.

It can be a trying time for families whose middle-aged member has become an addict. This is especially true for younger children because they see their once loving and caring parent change before their very eyes. Suddenly, they're living in a home that's become chaotic. However, there's still hope if the parent decides to change for the better by going to rehab.

If you are a middle-aged recovering addict or have a family member who is one, here are a few tips that can help prevent remission after graduating from rehab:

1. Keep Busy

Keeping busy is the best way to prevent remission because it helps distract the recovering addict from his or her urges. However, this does not mean he or she should go back to work especially if work-related stress is the main reason behind the addiction. The best way to keep a recovering addict busy is through sports.

These days it is very easy to learn a new sport without needing formal classes. Take soccer for example. According to the Epic Soccer Training review at soccergearreviews.net, this particular online program can help aspiring soccer players learn the basic skills in under 8 weeks and it can be done right in the backyard. Imagine that. There are also online training programs available for other sports such as basketball, tennis, bowling, and so on. However, keep in mind that these online training programs will only teach the fundamentals behind skills needed for the sport. The best way to master these skills is by testing them out on the field.

2. Improving One's Self-Esteem

Lack of self-confidence and low morale are some of the most common feeling recovering addicts have when they get out of rehab. It is very important that these feelings are addressed as soon as possible to prevent remission. You see, most depressed individuals think that the only way they can feel better about themselves is by getting high. This leads them to drink alcohol or use drugs more and more frequently and before they know it, they've already developed an addiction.

To prevent remission, it is important for recovering addicts and their loved ones to work together in boosting one's self-esteem. It can be as simple as giving their loved one a makeover or giving them advice on how to improve their complexion. Middle-aged women in particular, put a lot of weight in how they look. They easily get depressed when they see crow's feet and wrinkles starting to develop.

While the best way to keep premature signs of aging at bay is by keeping out of the sun and making sure that you are always hydrated, it is still best to observe a proper skin care regimen. Based on Lifecell reviews in happierandhealthier.org, creams that are especially formulated to boost the development of collagen in the skin are best for middle-aged women.

At the end of the day, preventing remission all boils down to amount of support a recovering addict gets from his or her support system. However, it is imperative for families to be aware of their boundaries. The last thing they would want is for their loved one to feel suffocated because this will cause them to become stressed.

How to Help Addicts Regain Control

In essence, addicts are people who are out of control. People who theoretically want to change their behavior, but in practice find that they’re unable to. Obviously, with some addictions like drugs and alcohol, the causes of the addiction are physical as well as mental – but speaking from my experience dealing with these kinds of issues, dealing with the mental component of addiction is very often just as important as helping to treat the physical withdrawal symptoms.

My point here is not that addicts are mentally weak – I hold a firm belief in the idea that addiction is a medical ailment – a disease, if you will. I’m not suggesting that addicts need to work on their mental strength so that they can be like the rest of us and not be addicted to things. What I’m trying to say is that addiction is like cancer, or any other type of serious disease – in other to overcome it, you need to be much stronger than other people. Addicts are sick – therefore, they need greater mental strength than you or I to overcome this sickness.

Since we’ve established the importance of the mental aspect of addiction, the next thing to think about is – how can we improve mental fortitude? I believe there are a number of activities that can help with this. One thing that I recommend strongly for addicts, particularly for younger addicts, is martial arts. Depending on where you’re from and how athletically gifted your loved one is, you might want to pick a less physical or more physical form of martial art. I believe how to fight, and then learning how to resist the urge to fight – this is a similar situation to controlling addictive behavior. There is something about martial arts that strengthens discipline and mental fortitude. I want to make clear that I’m not talking about going to martial arts once a week – I believe in order for it to be true beneficial to someone who is an addict, attendance needs to be as close as possible to daily. If you’re loved one can immerse him/herself in something positive, it is possible for that positive thing to take the place of the negative thing (addiction) in their life.

Another activity that I’ve found helps promote mental discipline and mental strength is any form of shooting – it could be shooting a bow and arrow, or a gun, and it could be shooting at a range or hunting. My own expertise is archery – I’m not generally a big fan of firearms – and I can tell you that having archery as a hobby has definitely helped me with my mental strength. Shooting a bow well takes strength, patience, and most importantly of all, timing, and the development of the latter two of these traits are helpful to the mental state. Also, I firmly believe that the experience of hunting and killing an animal can paradoxically help a person understand the fragility and the importance of life. This understanding can then lead to more clarity when it comes to the making decisions about whether to continue to pursue an addiction or not. If you’re loved one is a youth, I believe the Bear Apprentice III is quite well regarded as a bow for a younger person. If you’re dealing with an adult addict, it may be more difficult to get him/her on board with doing physical activities – perhaps you should just suggest a 1 day outing to a local archery or shooting range and go from there.

Sports as a Hobby for Recovering Addicts

Sobering up in rehab is a  significant step in recovering from an addiction. But like most recovering addicts will tell you, it is only half of the battle. The biggest and perhaps the hardest and longest hurdle they will have to surpass is transitioning back into society without relapsing.

A recovering addict's support system is vital in ensuring the success of the recovery. Aside from making sure that their loved one does not encounter any of the things that triggered their addiction in the past, the support system also needs to find ways to keep their loved ones occupied. One of the best ways to do this is by diverting their attention to something more productive. There is no better way to do this than by turning their interests into a hobby. Playing sports for example, is an excellent hobby choice for recovering addicts.

You've probably heard it said more than a hundred times – playing sports is a fun way of getting some exercise. This is part of the reason why sports are a great hobby for recovering addicts. Exercising releases endorphins or happy hormones. If your recovering loved one is pumped up with natural high, there is less risk of them falling into relapse.

Another benefit of playing sports is of course, the improvement on your loved one's physical appearance. This will greatly improve their self-confidence and that is important because once they feel better about themselves, they are more likely to socialize with new people. That of course, is vital to ensuring that all past triggers are eliminated from a recovering addict's life.

As far as choosing the type of sport to engage in, it all depends on what your loved one may be interested in. If he or she does not like being outdoors much, archery would be a great choice. Archery may seem like an expensive sport but it really isn't. If you read through the best English longbow reviews on sites like ultimatearcheryhq.com, you will realize that there are very affordable bows available in the market.

As part of the support group, it is your responsibility encourage your loved one's recovery by encouraging him or her to try new things. If he or she has decided to take up archery, you can  join in on the fun by making it a family activity. Again, sites like ultimatematearcheryhq.com is a great site to visit to read the best compound bow reviews  if you need help in deciding what type of bow to buy.

The options are endless if your loved one prefers sports that can be played outdoors. One sport that has been very popular among hobbyists these days is flag football and cycling. Both sports have their benefits but for recovering addicts, flag football may be the best option because it is played with a team. As such, it is a great way for your recovering loved one to meet new friends.

One word of caution though – make sure to moderate your loved one's exposure to his or her hobbies without making it look like you are trying to be too controlling. You see, you loved one can easily get addicted to his or her hobby. This isn't good because it can lead to the development of another addiction to help him or her escape from the realities of life after rehab. 

The Importance of Physical Appearance for Recovering Addicts

If you have ever tried to delve into the psyche of an addict, you would know that insecurity and low self-esteem are some of the most common things that drive someone to become addicted to sex, drugs, or alcohol. Through sex, for example, a person can get a sense of feeling wanted and loved. Alcohol and drugs, on the other hand, have the ability to throw inhibitions out the door thus giving a person a false sense of self-confidence.

Of course, everyone knows that these moments are fleeting so once that high wears off, the person has another go to feel it once again. There are cases when a person is not able to stop drinking or doing drugs because he is afraid to face the reality of his feelings. This is when occasional drinking or drug use becomes an addiction.

Oftentimes, a recovering addict's support system forgets how important it is to address their loved one's lack of self-confidence. They think that once an addict goes into rehab to become sober, all will be well once he gets out. They don't understand that the key to a successful recovery is figuring out and addressing the reason why a person was driven to alcohol or drug use in the first place.

If the cause was low-esteem and self-confidence, it imperative for the recovering addict's support system to do what they can to help rebuild their loved one's feelings of self-worth. There are a lot of ways to do this but helping them improve their physical appearance is a good way to start. A trip to the salon, a little shopping spree, and in extreme cases, probably a visit to a doctor.

One thing meth addicts have in common is bad teeth. Crystal meth is destroys the teeth's enamel thus making them look rotten. In some cases, the teeth of a meth addict can no longer be salvaged thus the only way to fix it is by pulling them all out. In less extreme circumstances, veneers would suffice.

The costs of veneers vary on a number of factors. For porcelain veneers, Atlanta based cosmetic dentistry specialists say it can range from $925 to $2,500 per tooth. It's a lot of money but this type of veneers can last up to 15 years. For composite veneers, Atlanta cosmetic dentistry clinics charge $250 to $1,500. These are a much cheaper option but they only last for about 5 to 7 years. Most dentists are sympathetic to the quest of former meth users to somehow erase any trace of their past. As such, they often offer special payment plans to recovering addicts.

Yes, it will cost some money to uplift a recovering addict's spirit after rehab and it will certainly take patience as the road to recovery is hard. But it is certainly worth it especially when you see your loved one get back on track once again. Furthermore, something as simple as a veneer treatment can go a long way in helping an addict slowly ease back into society and stay sober. 

Why we become addicted and how to overcome an addiction

Addictions are frequently misunderstood. Sometimes people see addiction as a weakness, especially in men. But it’s not so much a weakness as the way the mind works. True, some people have a more addictive personality than others, but addiction is pretty much a human affliction that affects all of us.

While many people think addiction is a sign of lack of willpower or self-control, but it’s actually much more complex than that, regardless of whether the addiction is drug related or related to playing too many games. It’s important to understand the reasons for addiction so that you can resolve the core of the problem, not just the symptoms. This is where many addiction programs go wrong, they focus on the addiction (the symptom), and not on the core of the problem. In my opinion that’s why the rate of relapse is so high in more traditional therapy addiction programs.

Think of it this way, everything we do is to either avoid pain, or attract pleasure; and I mean everything we do. What’s more, everything we do is to fulfil a basic human need. An addiction occurs when an activity (or a substance such as drugs) meets multiple human needs. As soon as that happens, we become addicted. So the simple answer to resolve any addiction if to figure out which needs are being met, and find a more healthy, supportive and better replacement to the negative addiction. For example, if you can replace exercise with smoking, all your needs would still be fulfilled, and you won’t lose out. On the other hand, stopping smoking without replacing something that meets those basic needs will cause a lot of pain, and most likely you will start smoking (or whatever the negative addiction is) again very fast.

This is a simple theory that has been proven to work, but because it’s so simple, many people don’t take it seriously and ignore this tactic. They seek more complicated solutions to addiction, which usually don’t actually work. So think about addiction logically and if the above makes sense, find more productive activities to replace the addiction with once you figured out what human needs are being met with what you are doing.

Here’s a few activities you can replace an addiction with that has proved to be very effective for many people suffering from many different addictions:

  • Focus on your career. By working at a job or your own business, you can become completely engrossed in a range of activities that will not only distract you from your problems, but also be involved in some activities that meet those needs which your addiction usually meet. A great way to challenge yourself even further is to start your own business, for example by making money online from home.
  • Another great way to overcome addiction is to focus on religion. What many people suffering from major life problems have found very useful is to surrender to a higher force, depending on your religious beliefs, that can mean all kinds of different things. You could even gain spiritual guidance from things such as psychic tarot readings.
  • Exercise has proven very effective to not only counter the negative health effects of addiction but also help you with giving up an addiction.

Hopefully the above will help you or someone close to you overcome an addiction faster and a little easier.

Supporting Your Recovering Loved One After Rehab

Those who are not in the know don't understand how scary it is for recovering addicts to go back into the real world after graduating from rehab. While friends and family members do all they can to be supportive and are even counseled on how to help their loved one ease back into society, they don't really understand how terrifying it actually is unless they have gone through it themselves.

You see, rehab is like a bubble where recovering addicts are among people who know and understand what they going through. They are shielded from judgmental eyes and real life problems. Their only concern and focus is to get better. This makes it easier for them to recover from their addiction.

However, they know that once they graduate from rehab, they would have to face people who make judgments based on their past. They would also have to deal with problems that may be too much to handle which would then lead them back towards that old dark path of addiction. What's the best thing to prevent this from happening?

First of all, it is important to remember that isolation is not the best course of action. Going slow is. Once a recovering addict gets out of rehab, the first thing they would need to do is connect with world through baby steps. No, a welcome home party may not be the best thing. After all, your loved one didn't exactly come back from a vacation overseas. A small, intimate gathering of very close family members and friends would suffice.

Next, don't rush your loved one into getting back into the employment bandwagon. This is especially true if work-related stress was the reason why they became an addict in the first place. In most cases, a change of career may be a good choice. If he or she is interested in taking up a couple of courses to acquire a certificate and new skill sets, why not? There are schools that offer training courses on how to become an electrician, a makeup artist, and so on. The best part is some parts of the training can be completed online. Which means, your  loved one won't have to be out of the house for long periods of time just yet.

Last, make sure that your loved one engages in outdoor activities. Not only will this be good for their physical health, it will also allow them to socialize and make new friends. Kayaking is a sport that has become very popular in the recent years. If you live near the water, this would be a good option for your loved one. Don't worry about spending too much money on equipment. Go online and read kayak paddle reviews for recommendations on the best kayaks for your loved one and your budget. Of course, make sure to include your loved one during this process so he or she won't feel that you're trying to run the entire show.

At the end of the day, it's all about supporting your loved one and playing an active role in his or her life. But remember to know your boundaries. The last thing you want is to suffocate them as this will lead them to pull away.

Hidden Risks of Diet Pill Addiction

Most people know that diet pills are either drugs that are produced pharmaceutically or created by naturally derived plant–based means. These pills are used by millions every day as a means of losing weight. They are available by way of prescriptions or as over-the-counter medications with a common goal of assisting people in losing or maintaining their weight. These pills affect the body’s natural processes by curbing appetite, increasing metabolism, controlling the absorption of calories, and sometimes giving the person an energy boost as well.

Many people see diet pills as a quick fix to lose a little extra weight after the holidays or before a vacation or other special event. Some who have a normal weight will take these pills to maintain that weight and keep energized so as to remove the focus from consuming calories and keep the focus on an active lifestyle. People who suffer from eating disorders may take these drugs as well. Most often results from diet pills is temporary if not used in conjunction with permanent lifestyle changes of better diet and increased exercise.

Side Effects of Diet Pills

While many people feel taking a natural weight loss supplement, like the one written about here, is safer than a pharmaceutical it is important to realize many natural supplements have severe side effects too. Common side effects from diet pills include, mood swings, trouble sleeping, digestion issues, dizziness, headache, rapid heartbeat, nausea, and anxiety. More severe side effects can include kidney and liver damage resulting in permanent damage or death.

Diet Pills can be Dangerous and Addictive

Sometimes appetite suppressants can have mental side effects as well. If a person is in a compromised mental state and is looking at a pill as a miracle cure they may have severe reactions to the pills not working including taking more than the recommended dose which can lead to abuse of the pills and addiction.
The ingredients of natural supplements can be addictive as well. Although derived from plants, roots, fruits and vegetable sources many ingredients still have serious power on the human body. Always listen to your body when you choose to use a natural weight loss pill and if you feel you are experiencing any side effects stop taking the supplement. Also, remember that diet pills are not to be used indefinitely, your body needs regular breaks from any drug or supplement.

Appetite Suppressant Addiction

Appetite suppressants are the most commonly abused form of diet pill. These drugs usually contain amphetamine-type drugs that are easy to misuse and have high rates of addiction. These drugs cause the brain to release chemicals that reduce the sensation of hunger and can have a stimulation effect on the body. People who respond well to these drugs have great success with weight loss, high energy, and even a feeling of mild euphoria. Teens need to be especially careful not to go overboard with diets and diet pills, read this article for more info specific to teens.

As with other amphetamine drugs, appetite suppressants are highly addictive and people can build a tolerance to them fast. Once a person has developed a tolerance to the medication or supplement they need to take more to achieve the same feelings or results. It can be difficult to stop taking these meds as withdrawal symptoms are common. Chronic use of appetite suppressants may cause a person to be depressed, anxious, have memory loss and paranoia. Diet pills can be very dangerous when used inappropriately and people must be carefully monitored when they choose to utilize these substances for weight loss. Check out this article from LiveStrong for more info.

Is “Hobby-preneurship” Good for Recovering Addicts?

One of the most important things in ensuring the road to addiction recovery is transitioning back into society after rehab. Those who have never been recovering addicts will not understand how hard this can be. Contrary to what many may think, they don't walk away from rehab feeling confident that they'll be able to get their lives back together in a snap. Recovering addicts are usually full of self-doubt, insecurities, and confusion. Of course, they still have some hope that they can pick up the pieces bit by bit.

Aside from a solid support system, recovering addicts need something to take their minds of their addiction. The craving does not really go away which is why they need an outlet to pour their attention to. This is why getting employed is vital. Sure, a hobby can be good too but keep in mind it is always better to hit two birds with one stone. By getting a job, a recovering addict can ease back into society bit by bit.

If you're reading this and you're a recovering addict, you may be thinking that the last thing you need right now is a job. After all, the stress and pressure brought about by employment can very well lead you back to that dark road. Here's the thing, the job does not necessarily have to be stressful. If your old job is what lead you to become an addict, it may be time you explore other career paths.

These days, more and more people are choosing to become "hobby-preneurs" rather than become corporate slaves or regular employees. What are exactly "hoppy-preneurs"? Well, they're people who make a living out of their hobbies. Needless to say, their lives are a lot less stressful because they're doing something they enjoy. For this reason, becoming a "hobby-preneur" is probably the best choice for recovering addicts.

This doesn't necessarily mean that you would need to shell out a lot of money to put up a start-up business. Start with baby steps. Say you enjoy painting and really have the talent for it. You can begin by taking on small jobs that won't require too much equipment. But don't forget to save a little from your earnings so you can invest in the best paint sprayer in the market sometime in the future. Having the right tools and equipment will help you grow your business exponentially.

The same goes for hobbies such as writing. Nowadays, it is much easier for a writer to get his work out there because the internet has made it possible for authors to self-publish their work digitally. Another option is to become a freelance writer if you have the knack for writing but aren't much of a storyteller. There are a lot of internet marketers looking for people who can write decent content for them. Of course, that doesn't really fall under "hobby-preneurship" but you can still earn money by writing.

You may have also noticed the influx of home bakers and homemade food products in the recent years. This is another good example of "hobby-preneurs". Homemade food products are usually made by hobbyists who decided to try earning some money by offering their signature dishes to the public. If you enjoy cooking and have fantastic recipes up your sleeve, this is definitely worth a try.

At the end of the day, it doesn't really matter what type of work you want to be doing. What matters is it's something that you enjoy and doesn't cause you enough stress to drive you to relapse. Another thing you need to remember is to always seek help when you feel that you're on the verge of breaking down.

The Ideal Life?

What is an ideal life?

Obviously this is different for everyone but I think at its core it’s very much the same for most. Friends, family, love and having the resources to enjoy life seem to be very important. Resources equal money for the most part and everyone needs or wants different amounts. A large majority of the people that I see that are happy aren’t necessarily multi-millionaires. I think that not having to worry about money contributes to the ideal life though. Although we cannot completely erase stress and worry from our lives it definitely helps to minimize it or as I like to say “choose your battles wisely.”

Because I am talking about the topic of money I feel that discussing the topic of passion is also of utmost importance as well. Being passionate about our relationships, being passionate about our jobs or being passionate about a hobby, it doesn’t matter as long as there is some form of passion. Multiple outlets are even better because passion and boredom rarely mix and it keeps life fun and interesting.

I met an amazing brother and sister couple this past weekend and they were very passionate about what they were doing. I could feel it when I spoke with them and it was a breath of fresh air. We had a long discussion about what they were doing in regards to their business but we also discussed their “why.” Why were they doing it? I always like to ask people their “why” because I feel likes it’s an important ingredient that is often times missed. The brother (his name is Todd) was very clear in regards to his why. He has a 3 year old girl (beautiful little girl btw, he showed me pictures,) and he was fed up with his job and not being challenged on a daily basis. He was also tired of working for someone else and building someone else’s empire rather than his own. The sister (her name is Tara) has a successful brick and mortar business and although the money is good, it requires tons of time and she feels empty inside because she really isn’t doing what she loves which is helping people. Tara is a past meth addict and by her looks and outlook on life you would never be able to guess that. I was blown away by her energy and zest for life. Talk about a transformation! After speaking with her for quite some time I can truly see that her mission in life is helping others. She is so full of this “giving energy” that she absolutely blew me away.

These two have now teamed up (which I think is very cool) and are building a business together and fulfilling those desires that their previous jobs were not. The business they are involved in is a multi level marketing company by the name of Isagenix. I am not really familiar with Isagenix itself but I do know that in order to succeed at multi level marketing (or MLM for short) you must be willing to give of yourself to others. It cannot and does not work any other way. Basically their success depends on the success of others so if other people are succeeding in their team Tara and Todd will succeed. It’s a very neat business concept, one that should be adopted more often in the business community I feel.

Check out their blog here it’s really quite funny and they are very creative. The reason I chose these two as an example is because they fit the criteria for what I believe is an ideal life. Although they may not have the ideal life right now, they are striving for it and it’s refreshing to see a young brother and sister team doing something like this and also having a ton of fun as well.

Hobbies to Help with Recovery

The hardest part of overcoming an addiction is not stopping using substances, it is the keeping away from using again. Several days or weeks after detachment from what a person is addicted to usually bring with them an upsurge in the craving for that substance, one starts to rationalize the use or benefits of such addictive substances. Phrases like ‘I have been off for two weeks; clearly I am not addicted’ start running through the mind of the recovering addict. It is so easy to fall back into the addiction black hole. The complication in most situations is that a recovering addict usually is without a job, as they need to focus on getting over their current obstacle. So they find themselves with a lot of time on their hands. And you know what they say about idle minds, right?

This is where hobbies come in help. With the extra free time, recovering addicts are usually hard pressed to find activities that enable them spend their time more wisely. If they are able to, and of course with the help of their close relatives and friends, any recovering addict should find something that they enjoy doing and through which they can express themselves. If it is possible, they could make a hobby out of this activity that they enjoy so much. This will help them become better, which really is the ultimate goal of the recovery process, by giving them something other than their (previous) addiction to focus on.

A great hobby could enable a recovering addict focus his or her energy. In learning to hone in on their energy and consciously decide what they want to spend their energy on, they can learn how to better control their urges, how to turn away even when the temptation is strong and how to exercise control over the addictions that previously controlled them. Take archery, for example, so much control and discipline is required to shoot just one arrow with a bow that suits you. Not only do you reap the physical benefits of toned muscles and a stronger core, you also get to have the emotional benefits, like peace of mind, calmness… and have you seen archers? They have got control locked down. Such control can also be found when one practices hobbies that are mostly sporty; from playing basket ball to going for yoga classes. Once individuals have their control, they can happily tuck their urges under their belts and go on to live a fulfilling life.

For a recovering addict, hobbies are good to keep him or her occupied, and maybe along the way, they may help discover something a former addict is really passionate about. The world is awash with stories of men and women who in the darkness of addiction found a light that shone on for the rest of their lives. So if you are in recovery, consider getting a hobby. Just search yourself or search Internet for good hobby options and you will find something (if our archery example sounds like something you want to try, you can read more about it here). Or if you already have one, consider spending more time on your craft, making it better, making yourself better. Be disciplined about it, give it your all. And this journey to an addiction-free life may be shorter and more fun.

Treating Addiction with Crossfit Training

Addiction to drugs, sex, speed, money, gaming, or your own personal affliction will eventually have a negative effect on your own life and the people around you. All of the above are classed as “unhealthy addictions” and the aim of my own research is to exchange a bad addiction with a “healthy addiction“.

Recent university studies show experiments using humans and animals indicates a similarity in behavior between healthy and unhealthy addictions. The connection between the two are endorphins which are  produced by our central nervous system. The main function of endorphins are to produce pain signals but they also produce a sense of euphoria depending on our own aspect of enjoyment.

My Own Rehab Experiments

Over the past three years I have worked closely with a local rehab clinic to provide a range of keep fit classes that include: spinning, crossfit, yoga and 5 a side soccer. The original purpose was to give patients the opportunity to keep fit during their stay.  It was noticeable that some patient’s attitude and habits changed dramatically when their thoughts were focused on a positive activity.

During the past 8 months I have conducted my own experiments of sports therapy. Below are my findings and advice for anyone wanting to implement a similar system.

Crossfit Training

To get the best results variety is the key. If all the  activities remain interesting it  stimulates the mind to prevent the patient from thinking about their addiction. Crossfit is the perfect solution because the activity is always changing. Below I have provided an example of one WOD (work out of the day).

Barbara Wod

20 Pullups
30 Pushups
40 Situps
50 Squats
3 min rest between each of 5 rounds

Crossfit Equipment and Gear

Crossfit requires a range of equipment and the correct gear before you can start. Below is a list of things you should buy to get started.

T-Shirt:  you will sweat and become hot during every session. A T-Shirt is ideal for training.

Shorts: a pair of running shorts or compression shorts if you also intend to cycle.

Shoes: a pair of good quality shoes designed for crossfit are essential. My own shoes are the Reebok Nano but make sure when you do purchase a pair of shoes they are made for cross training to avoid injury. More information can be found at www.dsstuff.com

Socks:  At every crossfit session I always bring  two pairs of socks. It is important to keep your feet as dry as possible.

Sweatshirt:  If you are running outside for an extended period of time a warm sweatshirt will maintain  adequate body temperature.

Kettlebell: Many of the cross fit workouts incorporate a kettlebell during the routine

Weightlifting barbell: Nothing focuses the mind like weightlifting

Rings: They are not essential but they are cost effective for the beginner to add variety to your workout .

Medicine ball: Another cost effective piece of equipment that will target those are to tone muscles.

Jump rope:  One of my favorite exercises is skipping . Make sure to find one that suits your height or a fun activity could turn into a frustrating  experience .

Rowing machine: Investing in a good machine may cost you a few extra dollars but it will be worth it in the long run. Cheap machines tend to break fairly easy  causing more time and money to be wasted . This is one thing you don’t want to buy used.

Training Method

You can easily research crossfit training routines online which will list  all the WODs to create a good routine. I would  suggest watching crossfit workouts on youtube.com which will allow you to see the workouts performed . I create classes that last from 60 to 90 minutes, offering morning and afternoon sessions.

Set homework assignments after every workout ensuring the patient develops a better understanding of the sport . If the patient is fully vested into the workout routine it will result in long term compliance. The key to success is consistency, if you miss sessions the system becomes ineffective and the patients can loose interest quickly.

Conclusion

Implementing a system for your patients or even yourself can be easy and effective if you find the right fit.  Variety is the key to keeping things interesting, and keeping everyone engaged .