Thursday, May 10, 2012

Tanya Clark, MSOTR/L

            Addiction--a maladaptive way of coping--effects an estimated 61% of Americans, preventing the majority from achieving life balance (Sussman, Lisha, & Griffiths, 2011; Workaholics Anonymous World Service Organization, 2005). Ongoing attempts to satisfy the addiction prevent engagement in other aspects of life, affecting health and life balance (Helbig & McKay, 2003). Promoting balance can reduce the effects of the addiction and improve life.

            Addictions are uncontrollable and prevent activity participation, fulfillment of roles, and maintenance of relationships while causing financial, legal, or emotional problems (Brady, Vodanovich, & Rotunda, 2008; Helbig & McKay, 2003), but actions may be taken to regain balance. Eliminating supports for the addiction, re-allocating time, increasing awareness, creating new routines, substituting challenges related to the addiction with non-addiction challenges, and being goal focused will also help (Brady, Vodanovich, & Rotunda, 2008; Dayton, n. d.; Helbig & McKay, 2003; Matuska, 2010). Twelve-step programs do some of these things, also providing the ability to give up control and a sense of belonging (Downs, Houghtaling, Wampler, & Shumway, 2009; Thibeault, 2011). In addition, therapy may be used to create new coping strategies and increase motivation (Stoffel & Moyers, 2004). Combing multiple strategies will strengthen recovery, allowing greater balance and the ability to experience life (Brady, Vodanovich, & Rotunda, 2008; Dayton, n. d.;  Stoffel & Moyers, 2004).

            Addiction is highly prevalent in today's culture, limiting a person's ability to engage in the experiences that allow for life balance. By opposing the addiction through certain interventions, the individual is able to reduce the impact of the addiction so that balance can be achieved. With greater balance will come improved health and wellbeing, motivating further success against the addiction and promoting further life balance.


Brady, B. R., Vodanovich, S. J., & Rotunda, R. (2008). The impact of workaholism on work-family conflict, job satisfaction, and perception of leisure activities. The Psychologist-Manager Journal, 11(2), p. 241-263.

Dayton, Tian. (n. d.). The set up: Living with addiction. Retrieved March 9, 2012 from website %20curriculum.pdf

Downs, A. B., Houghtaling, A., Wampler, R. S., & Shumway, S. (2009). Shifting perspectives in recovery: Feminist-informed relationship groups for male addicts. Alcoholism Treatment Quarterly, 27(4), p. 409-425.

Helbig, K. & McKay, E. (2003). An exploration of addictive behaviours from an occupational perspective. Journal of Occupational Science, 10(3), p. 140-145.

Matuska, K. M. (2010). Workaholism, life balance, and well-being: A comparative analysis. Journal of Occupational Science, 17(2), p. 104-111.

Stoffel, V. C. & Moyers, P. A. (2004). An evidence-based and occupational perspective of interventions for persons with substance-use disorders. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 58(5), p. 570-586.

Sussman, S., Lisha, N., & Griffiths, M. (2011). Prevalence of the addictions: A problem of the majority or the minority? Evaluation of the Health Professions, 34(1), p. 3-56.

Thibeault, R. Fostering healing through occupation: The case of the Canadian inuit. Journal of Occupational Science, 9(3), p. 153-158.

Workaholics Anonymous World Service Organization (2005). Recovery from work addiction through working the twelve steps. Retrieved March 11, 2012 from

Wednesday, May 9, 2012



Each anonymous group has ways

for those who want support to get it.

Don't be afraid to contact them;

they know you better than you know yourself,

 and they have experienced what you have experienced.

If you don't find an anonymous program

that is right for you in this list, keep looking.

This is by no means a comprehensive list;

these are only the most common anonymous programs.

Life balance is within reach, so reach out!

  • Alcoholics Anonymous
    • Mailing address
      • A.A. World Services, Inc., P.O. Box 459, New York, NY 10163
    • Physical address
      • A.A. World Services, Inc., 11th Floor, 475 Riverside Drive at West 120th St., New York, NY  10115
    • Phone number
      • (212) 870-3400
  • Cocaine Anonymous
    • Mailing addresses
      • CAWSO, 21720 S. Wilmington Ave., Ste. 304, Long Beach, CA  90810-1641
      • CAWSO, P.O. Box 492000, Los Angeles, CA  90049-8000
    • Phone number
      • (310) 559-5833
  • Crystal Meth Anonymous  
    • Mailing address
      • CMA General Services, 4470 W. Sunset Blvd. Ste. 107 PMB 555, Los Angeles, CA  90027-6302
    • Phone number
      • (213) 488-4455 (hotline)   
  • Food Addicts Anonymous
  • Love Addicts Anonymous
  • Nicotine Anonymous
    • Mailing address
      • Nicotine Anonymous World Services, 6333 E. Mockingbird #147-817, Dallas, TX  75214
    • Email addresses
      • General information:
      • Meeting list:
    • Phone number
      • (877) TRY-NICA (877-879-6422)
  • Gamblers Anonymous       
    • Mailing address
      • Gamblers Anonymous International Service Office, P.O. Box 17173, Los Angeles, CA  90017
    • Email address
    • Phone number
      • (888) GA-HELPS (hotline)
      • (626) 960-3500 (International Service Office)
  • Heroin Anonymous
  • Marijuana Anonymous
    • Mailing address
      • Marijuana Anonymous World Services, P.O. Box 7807, Torrance, CA  90504
    • Email address          
    • Phone number
      • (800) 766-6779
  • Narcotics Anonymous
    • Email address
      • General information:
    • Mailing addresses
      • Main Office
        • P.O. Box 9999, Van Nuys, California 91409
      • World Service Office (WSO)-Europe
        • 48 Rue de l'Été/Zomerstraat, B-1050 Brussels, Belgium
    • Phone numbers
      • USA: (818) 773-9999
        • General information (USA): ext. 771
      • World Service Office (Europe): 32-2-646-6012
  • Overeaters Anonymous     
    • Mailing address
      • P.O. Box 44020, Rio Rancho, New Mexico  87174-4020
    • Street Address
      • 6075 Zenith Court NE, Rio Rancho, New Mexico  87144-6424
    • To email
    • Phone number
      • (505) 891-2664
  • Online Gamers Anonymous
  • Pills Anonymous                 
  • Smokers Anonymous
  • Sex Addicts Anonymous      
    • Mailing address
      • ISO of SAA, P.O. Box 70949, Houston, TX  77270
    • Phone numbers
      • National: (713) 869-4902
      • Los Angeles: (213) 896-2964
      • Orange County: (714) 254-7952     
  • Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous       
  • Workaholics Anonymous          



Tools to help you relax through those difficult times

Television series demonstrating the variety of addictions that may impact a person's life:
  • "My Strange Addiction" on TLC and


Online social community dedicated to trying to live life free from addiction:


Free program speaker tapes, available online to download and play:

Online meetings, if you cannot find or are not ready to attend a face-to-face meeting:

Phone Apps (may have a fee)

  • iPhone: Ann-e, iPromises, iRecovery, (search "Mobile Apps for Addiction")
  • Android: Twenty Four Hours a Day, One Recovery on the Go, AA Speakers to Go, iRecovery free

Online resources for keeping you challenged and fulfilled


Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Tips for Getting Your Life Back







Alcoholics Anonymous
Cocaine Anonymous
Crystal Meth Anonymous
Food Addicts Anonymous
Gamblers Anonymous
Heroin Anonymous
Love Addicts Anonymous
Marijuana Anonymous
Narcotics Anonymous
Nicotine Anonymous
Online Gamers Anonymous
Overeaters Anonymous
Pills Anonymous
Sex Addicts Anonymous
Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous
Smokers Anonymous
Workaholics Anonymous




  • Eliminate things in the environment that support the addiction
    • Family friends, coworkers, employers, community, social "hang-outs"
    • Ease for accessing the addictive thing
    • Listen: University of Utah "Environmental Risk Factors"
  • Develop new coping strategies
    • Avoid being hungry, angry, lonely, or tired...these can trigger the addiction
    • Create a different lifestyle; it will be easier to stay "clean"
  • Increase awareness to the addictive behaviors
    • Know what "sets you off" write these things down--be honest with yourself
  • Re-distribute time to meaningful activities not associated with the addiction
  • Create new routines
    • Stay happy within your routine, even if it requires changes to the environment
  • Find something challenging, not associated with the addiction, to provide fulfillment and boost confidence
  • Set goals continuously
    • Plan your days so you can best maange your time
  • Join a 12-step program (see above), seek additional/outside help (i.e., therapist)
    • Stay in contact with someone who understands your addiction
  • Stay motivated
    • Remeber where you have been adn where you want to be
    • Remeber what is at stake if you act on the addiction--total lack of balance in life (feeling completely out of control and unhappy)
    • Help someone
  • Find ways to relax
    • Spend time with a pet
    • Read
    • Listen to music
    • Exercise
    • Meditate
    • Talk to someone
    • Go for a walk
    • Get plenty of sleep
    • Enjoy "the little things in life"
    • Treat yourself to an occasional non-addiction "treat"
    • Laugh


Studies show that those in AA who help new members have a significantly decreased risk of relapsing.

Studies show AA/NA members who sponsor are more likely to get and stay clean for the year they sponsor


happiness, freedom, peace


Monday, May 7, 2012

Addiction can affect anyone.

For those with an addiction, their entire life becomes out of balance.

This lack of balance prevents them from enjoying "normal" life.

This blog has been created as a resource for those individuals

affected by addiction.

Information is provided to help

 individuals take action in order to regain balance in life.

The idea is that with awareness to the addiction

(through the help and fellowship of twelve-step support groups)

a person with an addiction is able to perform specific actions to

promote health (experienced through happiness, freedom from the

addiction, and peace with life events)

and allow the person to regain life balance.

The resources on this blog will

help support the journey from a life of unbalanced,

unhappy addiction to

a life of balance and happiness.

Start now!