Being in recovery from an alcohol or drug addiction is a lifelong process. Each coping skill and tool learned along the way contributes to your sobriety. One skill to add to your toolkit is mindfulness. Simply put, mindfulness is the practice of being fully aware and present in the moment without any judgment.
To learn more about the relationship between mindfulness and addiction recovery, check out these six excellent books.
1. Mindful Recovery: A Spiritual Path to Healing from Addiction by Dr. Thomas Bien and Beverly Bien
The Biens draw upon clinical psychological knowledge and ancient spiritual wisdom to show how mindfulness, a simple Buddhist practice, can help those in addiction recovery be aware of and enjoy life while being in the present moment. They present ten “doorways” to mindful recovery, including “seeing the magic of the ordinary,” “journaling,” and “recreation and nature” and provide strategies to help readers step through each doorway. The book also features personal recovery stories, meditation instructions, and practical exercises.
2. The Mindful Path to Addiction Recovery: A Practical Guide to Regaining Control Over Your Life by Dr. Lawrence Peltz
An addiction psychiatrist for almost thirty years, Dr. Lawrence Peltz explains the stages of the recovery process and the basics of addiction by drawing on his years of clinical experience and the mindfulness-based techniques of stress reduction, also known as MBSR. He provides mindfulness exercises that specifically support addiction recovery.
Bruna recovered from addiction to drugs and alcohol at age 22 and dedicated his life since then to helping others find recovery. A former Buddhist monk, Bruna calls upon his years as a monk, counselor, and educator to lead those in recovery to more resiliency, inner peace, and well-being. He explains that living mindfully is the key to becoming aware of one’s own value and worthiness. A sense of self-worth leads people to live meaningful and productive lives. Bruna outlines seven skills needed to live mindfully in recovery: action, attention, compassion, equanimity, loving-kindness, values, and wisdom.
4. One Mindful Day at a Time: 365 meditations for Living in the Now by Dr. Alan D. Wolfelt
Dr. Wolfelt, a counselor, provides his readers with practical guidance and wisdom. Each day’s entry begins with a soothing or inspiring quote followed by a discussion of the daily theme. The entry concludes with a short mantra that the reader returns to at different times throughout their day. The book helps you to slow down from your normal hectic day and reduces the feelings of distraction and scatteredness. It shows you how to live each moment with gratitude and purpose from a place of peace.
5. The Gift of Recovery: 52 Mindful Ways to Live Joyfully Beyond Addiction by Dr. Rebecca E. Williams and Julie S. Kraft
This book helps you stay on the road to recovery by offering quick tricks and tips to help cope with the stresses of everyday life. It explains the importance of self-care and how to build and maintain a joyful, mindful, and lasting recovery. This mindfulness guide contains fifty-two effective and powerful meditations to help manage feelings of depression, stress, and other powerful emotions that can derail your sobriety.
6. Mindfulness Skills Workbook for Addiction: Practical Meditations and Exercises to Change Addictive Behaviors by Morgan Fitzgerald
Morgan Fitzgerald, a Licensed Professional and Chemical Dependency Counselor, shows readers how to manage addiction through mindfulness. Fitzgerald’s mindfulness workbook provides the tools needed to build a healthier mindset by grounding yourself in the present. By being in the present, you will have more compassion and honesty toward yourself. The book also includes simple exercises and meditations that teach you to increase your understanding of your personal triggers by becoming more self-aware.
You Are Not Alone
Addiction can affect anyone. If you or a loved one is struggling with an addiction to drugs or alcohol, you are not alone. Help is available. Call and speak to a caring professional at English Mountain Recovery, located in the beautiful Smoky Mountains of Tennessee. We will answer your questions and help you get started on your journey to recovery and living a clean and sober life.