How Seeking Sober Books and Blogs Can Help Your Recovery

Libraries and bookstores typically contain several books that offer real and relatable accounts of addiction recovery, and the number of recovery blogs continues to multiply online. Quality might vary, but the right storyteller and narrative can help empower recovering addicts with hope, inspiration and motivation. As a part of the recovery process, such written accounts can help in many ways, including those listed below.

Reduction in Addiction Stigma

The Psychiatry (Edgmont) journal in 2007 noted that stigma, shame and discrimination motivate many addicts to take extreme measures to hide and deny their substance abuse. Addiction-related stigma is in decline thanks to science and education, but like many social ills, a fair amount of ignorant discrimination still exists. Recovery narratives often help reduce stigma both in society and for the reader. Addiction rarely happens in a vacuum, so to speak. Numerous genetic and environmental factors typically play a role, including undiagnosed mental health disorders, and authors who freely share their experiences help others to feel comfortable acknowledging what they went through in their personal lives. Functional alcoholics, for example, might learn to overcome denial and more freely discuss their substance abuse after reading the accounts of other alcoholics who learned they were not quite as functional as they thought. Educating people on the science of addiction helps reduce misinformed bias, but sharing the social and personal aspects also helps take the sting out of stigma.

Secondary Social Support

The Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment in 2009 described social support as a primary and essential mechanism for change in recoveries. Books and blogs should not replace standard social support structures, but literature can provide a secondary level of support through the writer-reader relationship. In many cases, the author and the reader connect over shared experiences, and these connections show recovering addicts that they are not alone. Moreover, online forums related to a blog or book can provide additional social resources for people who were similarly moved by the account. In some cases, a blog might connect through a series of random posts (as opposed to a linear narrative) that expresses daily feelings, inspirations and ideas. Other blogs might include online dialogues between the reader and writer, with the latter potentially being an addiction therapist offering professional advice.

Healthy and Productive Activity

In simplest terms, reading is a positive activity that stimulates the mind, reduces boredom and contributes to purpose and routine. In the early stages of recovery, these are key benefits that can reduce relapse and craving risks. As taught in most rehabilitation centers, recovering addicts need to pursue new hobbies and interests that elevate their physical, emotional and social health. The new activities can range from physical fitness to expressive arts, and reading is a positive option that also educates people on numerous levels. For example, reading addiction and recovery accounts can help individuals better understand their own emotions, motivations and behaviors. Recovering addicts should engage in numerous positive activities, not just reading, but books and blogs can certainly be a valuable aid.

Positive Recovery Culture

The Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment in 2007 describes the characteristics of recovery as sobriety, health and positive citizenship, and sober literature can certainly be a positive community in itself. A good book or blog might include some stark stories and scenarios, but the overall tone should be one of hope, change and progress that helps foster positive mindsets. During recovery, positivity is a valuable resource that boosts mental energy, cognitive function, social connections, mood levels, focus and determination. On a physical level, positivity even improves the immune system, decreases inflammation and stimulates nerve connection growth in the brain. Addiction wreaks havoc on a person’s neurobiology, and healing in neural pathways and transmissions moves people that much closer to a stable recovery. If literature can promote healing by improving positivity and mood, recovering addicts should seek out sober books and blogs that provide hope and inspiration.

Where to Find Good Books and Blogs

Therapists, local support groups and avid readers can all recommend good titles and sites. Likewise, several online resources exist that provide recommendations, reviews and ratings. Actively seek out suggestions from recovery partners and sponsors, and do not be afraid to switch books or blogs if they do not have the desired effect. Countless other options are available that might produce a more satisfying response. Likewise, some individuals might wish to start their own blog or book as a way to articulate their experiences in a positive and productive way.

Addiction and Recovery

Do you have questions or need help with information and recommendations? Our admissions coordinators can take your call 24 hours a day and provide addiction and recovery help. If first-time or additional treatment is necessary, we can even check health insurance plans for benefits. If you need any type of assistance, please call our toll-free helpline now.

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