Skip to main content


How Redpoint's Non-Residential Programs Help Families Foster the Transition of Loved Ones Back Into Their Lives

How Redpoint’s Non-residential Programs Help Families Foster the Transition of Loved Ones Back Into Their Lives

By Featured, Treatment

Individuals recovering from substance misuse and co-occurring conditions benefit from family participation in outpatient treatment. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), “Involving family members in substance use disorder (SUD) treatment can positively affect client engagement, retention, and outcomes.” The Redpoint Center facility in Longmont, Colorado, offers partial hospitalization (PHP) and other non-residential treatment programs to help families and their loved ones heal from the effects of substance misuse.

Family Engagement Is Essential During Early Recovery

The side effects of substance misuse impact everyone in a family unit. Encouraging family members to participate in family therapy or other recovery services reduces stress and helps family members heal from their own trauma. According to SAMHSA, “While there is no one-size-fits-all solution . . . research shows that family support can play a major role in helping a loved one with mental and substance use disorders.” Therapy and other support services assist people in regaining their independence with the encouragement of family and close friends. The Redpoint Center helps families heal and thrive during recovery using evidence-based and alternative holistic therapies.

Family members can support their loved ones using an empathetic and compassionate approach to improve the effectiveness of therapy. Sometimes family dynamics influence a person’s ability to manage their condition. Therapy offers families an opportunity to identify and process potential issues and find healthy solutions under the guidance of a trained professional.

Family engagement is essential during early recovery due to the following:

  • The support of family reduces symptoms related to stress, anxiety, and depression
  • Family members have an easier time identifying potential triggers for relapse prevention
  • Families hold their loved ones accountable for maintaining sobriety and attending treatment

The Redpoint Center helps families support their loved ones during the transition out of treatment. Often, people in recovery feel more confident about their ability to overcome challenges in early recovery if their family participates in treatment and aftercare services.

How Does Family Therapy and Other Services Support Loved Ones?

Many of the clinicians and support staff at The Redpoint Center are in recovery themselves and understand the challenges of increasing independence in early recovery. Family therapy and other services can help you and your loved ones navigate treatment and aftercare.

The Redpoint Center offers a continuum of outpatient care, including the following:

  • Outpatient programs (OP)
  • Intensive outpatient programs (IOP)
  • Partial hospitalization programs (PHP)
  • Sober living communities
  • Extended aftercare services
  • Alumni support

Family therapy and other support services provide clients at every level of care with the resources they need to build a strong foundation for future success. The care team will educate you and your family about the realities of mental health, addiction, and recovery.

How Can Families Support Loved Ones Participating in Non-Residential Treatment?

Non-residential treatment programs allow families to take a lead role in their loved one’s recovery from SUD. The transition out of structured treatment and into aftercare may destabilize some people. Family members help clients maintain emotional stability and the healthy behaviors they learned in outpatient care.

Non-residential treatment allows families to contribute more directly to their loved one’s recovery by doing the following:

  • Providing practical support, including rides to treatment or medication management
  • Allowing families to practice skills they learn in family therapy to build deeper bonds
  • Providing compassionate and empathetic support

For many people, family engagement in recovery is essential to long-term recovery. You may worry about how treatment might interfere with close relationships and personal responsibilities. However, The Redpoint Center uses evidence-based methods to help clients and their families benefit from outpatient care.

The Redpoint Center Helps Families Support Loves Ones in Recovery

Recovery experts at The Redpoint Center understand every member of the family unit is affected when a loved one receives treatment for substance use disorder. According to the Journal of Food and Drug Analysis, “The effects of a SUD on a specific family or concerned significant other are determined by the severity of the disorder, the presence of other serious problems such as psychiatric illness, behaviors exhibited by the family member with a SUD, support available for the family, and the family members’ coping strategies.” You and your loved ones can heal from the effects of SUD by working together with the dedicated clinicians at The Redpoint Center.

Supporting Your Loved One During the Transition to Continuing Care

The transition from structured care to full independence usually involves a period of aftercare. Some people may join a sober living community to reduce the stress of the transition. However, strong family support can help clients in recovery move smoothly from treatment programs to long-term recovery at home. Redpoint assists families by giving them the tools to overcome obstacles and heal as a family. The experts at The Redpoint Center are here to help you and your family grow and heal together.

Recognizing the Signs of Alcohol Relapse

Recognizing the Signs of Alcohol Relapse

By Addiction, Alcohol Rehab, Featured

Recognizing the Signs of Alcohol RelapseThere is a term in the addiction recovery community called “terminal uniqueness.” What this means is that people who struggle with issues of addiction often feel like they are alone in their experiences. However, when someone begins engaging and interacting with other members of recovery communities they soon find out that addiction is a “shared experience.” Perhaps the details of active addiction are different, but the feelings of despair are almost always the same. Yet even after all of this shared experience, individuals that experience alcohol relapse often go right back to that state of “terminal uniqueness.”

What Exactly Is Alcohol Relapse?

An alcohol relapse is something that occurs after a successful period of recovery. Also, it is important to note that a relapse rarely ever happens “at the moment.” Alcohol relapses often begin long before the first drink is taken. According to the Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine, “Relapse is a gradual process that begins weeks and sometimes months before an individual picks up a drink or drug.” So it is important to recognize the warning signs early if a relapse is to be thwarted.

It is also important to get away from the idea that relapses are uncommon occurrences. According to the journal, Current Psychiatry Reports, “For 1-year outcomes across alcohol, nicotine, weight, and illicit drug abuse, studies show that more than 85% of individuals relapse and return to drug use within 1 year of treatment.” Of course, we all wish that relapse wasn’t a part of recovery, but the truth is that it is. Will everyone in recovery experience a relapse? Of course not. But, that doesn’t mean that they are immune to one in the future if they don’t maintain a close connection to their recovery program.

It also doesn’t mean that an individual that experiences alcohol relapse desires long-term recovery any less. They just happened to run into a bump in the recovery road. We must remember that recovery journeys are not all linear, and that’s OK. The key is to take the next right step forward after taking one of those lateral relapse steps.

What Are the Warning Signs of Alcohol Relapse

The Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine also explains that “there are three stages to relapse: emotional, mental, and physical,” and that “the common denominator of emotional relapse is poor self-care.” So, if that “common denominator” is poor self-care, then what are the other factors that forecast a potential alcohol relapse? The following are just a few:

  • An individual may begin to become less engaged with their recovery program or community (avoiding attending 12-step meetings for example)
  • They may begin to glamorize their past alcohol experiences
  • An individual may become more secretive and isolated
  • They may start to frequent toxic places and engage with influential people that were part of their active addiction
  • An individual may exhibit excessive mood swings, and become defensive about their behaviors
  • They may express their doubts that the recovery process is working or that it will continue to work

Relapse: Never Get Discouraged

When it comes to alcohol relapse it is important to remember to never get discouraged. A relapse never has to be the end of recovery. The key is to learn from the experience and make the proper adjustments to get back on the right path. After all, it’s not how you fall, it’s how you get back up.

When discussing alcohol relapse with another fellow in recovery, one of the co-founders of Alcoholics Anonymous, Bill Wilson offered this, ”About this slip business – I would not be too discouraged. I think you are suffering a great deal from a needless guilt.” This guild is needless because looking back after a relapse will not magically make it go away, and that’s also OK. It is better to reframe a relapse as a new beginning rather than a roadblock.

Relapse: Never Give Up

So, what happens if all of the warning signs were missed and relapse happens to occur? The first step is to reconnect with the initial recovery plan and recovery community. Then the next step is to make adjustments and a relapse prevention plan so those warning signs aren’t missed again.

For example, for someone that just experienced relapse, it may be a good idea to create a daily check-in routine with either a “sober friend” in recovery or an addiction specialist. Another adjustment might be to journal before retiring to see if any of those warning signs were missed throughout the day. An excellent adjustment is also to connect to a safe space, where recovery is paramount. The Redpoint Center is one of those spaces.

Here at the Redpoint Center, our recovery mission has never wavered. Our goal is to not only create a safe space for recovery at the moment but also to provide the tools to avoid relapse and safely navigate recovery in the long term.

True sobriety and transformation are ongoing processes. There are also often new stresses and challenges that can inform an individual’s risk of relapse. It is critical to understand the signs and symptoms that may inform a person’s changing perspectives or risk of relapse, so they can then best address these situations to prevent engaging with alcohol again despite the challenges. The Redpoint Center is a safe space to address these challenges and create comprehensive relapse prevention strategies alongside professionals and peers for a sustainable sober future. If you feel like you or a loved one may be veering toward a relapse, we can help. For more information on addiction treatment and relapse prevention, call The Redpoint Center at (303) 710-8496.

Andy’s Journey of Recovery with Redpoint

By Addiction, Featured

Before I spoke with Donnie on the phone during my last week of inpatient treatment, I had no idea where I was going or where I was headed. Before admitting to that facility, I had relapsed only two weeks after leaving a different rehab center. I knew that I had to surrender and ask for the support I needed if I was ever going to achieve long-term sobriety, I just didn’t know what that looked like or how to get there. With the last week of my 90-day stay coming to an end, my case manager suggested The Redpoint Center in Longmont for intensive outpatient therapy and optional sober living.

I spoke with Donnie on the phone, and he could relate to me on my new journey of recovery. He knew exactly the steps to take not only to get admitted to Redpoint but what I needed to do after I had moved into sober living and started therapy. If I ever had any questions regarding what to do, I knew I could ask Redpoint staff since most of them have personal experience in recovery and have found success in long-term sobriety. They paired me with another sober living housemate who took me to AA meetings, and who even helped me get a job. I started working a new job serving tables at a restaurant 3 days after admitting, at 23 years old. It was suggested I go to recovery meetings as often as I could, and to start exercising. I filled most of my time working, attending AA meetings, going to therapy, and exercising.

Then faster than I could have ever imagined, my life started drastically improving. Not only was I making friends, connecting with a recovery community, becoming financially independent, and working through past trauma, but all that work slowly started accumulating into a life I could enjoy and feel fulfilled in. I was soaking in advice and suggestions like a sponge, and I was taking action. This was the change I needed because, in previous treatment environments, my inflated ego and sense of entitlement were like the great wall of China that blocked any useful advice or suggestions. Unlike other treatment centers that I went to, Redpoint felt like home. They held me accountable, treated me like family, and showed they truly cared about me, and eventually became like family.

After obtaining a sponsor in AA and working through the 12 steps, I started sponsoring other young men in recovery. I attended group and individual therapy at Redpoint for 9 months. After obtaining a year of sobriety, I became the house manager of Redpoint’s sober living house. I get the opportunity to support people who are just like myself, as they start their recovery journeys. While in my role as house manager, I obtained a job as a pharmacy technician in a mental health hospital. I worked in the pharmacy for about a year, until I was offered a full-time position at The Redpoint Center.

I have worked at Redpoint for over three years, and currently have over four years of sobriety. I have obtained my recovery coach certification, and I love being able to work with people in recovery and to be working at a facility that was instrumental in saving my life. Even though life throws curveballs, my life is manageable without using mind-altering substances, and that is such an amazing gift.

Boulder and Larimer County Mental Health and Drug Rehab Andy's Journey of Recovery with Redpoint Photo

Our dedicated outpatient programs can instill the skills and strategies needed to manage your life with your family while continuing to focus on your sober efforts. With multiple locations across Colorado, we can help you find the place to begin your journey to healing with your family today. For more information on how we can personalize your time with us, call to speak to us today at (303) 710-8496.

Q&A with Nikki Summers, Redpoint’s Clinical Program Director

By Featured, Therapy
Boulder and Larimer County Mental Health and Drug Rehab Q&A with Nikki Summers, Redpoint’s Clinical Program Director Photo

Our Teen Clinical Director, Nikki Summers, has worked in the field for 30 years. Fifteen of those years were spent specializing in teen clients and their families. We asked her to share some of her insights into this important demographic.

What do you think are the most important areas of focus when treating teens? 

  1. Family System. The family system is the training ground for skill development and healthy attachments. Parents must be equipped to assist their teens in the process of recovery. Redpoint provides weekly family therapy to support parents and educate them on effective ways to interact, bond, and communicate with their teen. In addition, family therapy focuses on enhancing the dynamics of the entire family system to create a healthier level of functioning and to increase the teen’s sense of safety. Healthy attachment, effective coping skills, and a sense of safety are key to a fulfilling life.
  2. Trust. Treating teens is challenging because they often feel misunderstood and unheard by adults. In addition, they often feel they do not belong in the world. Redpoint wants them to feel they are fully accepted and welcomed the moment they enter our door, which is why we strive to create a family-oriented environment with staff who are available to greet the teens when they arrive for programming and spend time hanging out with them before their sessions. We listen to them, hear them, and make every effort to understand them.
  3. Compassion. The prominence of shame in our society significantly affects teens, who often struggle with low self-worth. We understand that many support systems fail to model compassion and self-love. Redpoint focuses on empowering teens to feel worthy and teaching them how to be self-compassionate. We implement a strength-based approach by focusing on the teens’ strengths and positive attributes to assist them in recognizing their potential.

What do you think are a few of the significant problems affecting teens today?

  1. Social media platforms have created a multitude of problems, such as cyberbullying, addiction, isolation, body dysmorphia, low self-worth, depression, and anxiety.
  2. Our society is experiencing a rapid progression in the number of teens addicted to substances. The accessibility to drugs has increased, and the fentanyl epidemic poses a significant threat to our youth.
  3. The world is experiencing many humanitarian crises, such as climate change, economic turmoil, armed conflict, and racial crimes to name a few. These issues affect the overall sense of peace and safety of the population. The worlds’ youth are disproportionately affected by humanitarian crises because of their inherent vulnerability. These issues expose millions of teens to unthinkable forms of violence, exploitation, abuse, and neglect, which affect their survival, growth, and development.

What modality do teens respond to most effectively and why?

Although I use a variety of modalities to treat teens, I believe they respond best to experiential therapies. Teens often struggle to share their emotions and verbalize their thoughts due to a fear of being judged or shamed. In addition, many of them have not be taught how to express themselves. Through various forms of experiential modalities, teens are given the opportunity to express their emotions in a less vulnerable fashion. When they have established a higher level of comfort with their peers and therapist, other types of experiential therapies are beneficial in reaching them on a deeper level and allowing their unconscious experiences to become conscious while increasing their awareness of the underlying causes of their emotions, actions, and thoughts.

With the unique challenges that teens face, having age-appropriate care for teens is necessary for the best approach to healing. At Redpoint’s Longmont location, we create a supportive and dedicated atmosphere of healing for teens to address the use of drugs and alcohol while still tending to their own daily lives. We are prepared to help you or your teen with dedicated, proven strategies, all backed by a community of support, caring, and understanding. Between our use of experiential therapies and proven strategies, we can help you create the best approach to helping you get wholly involved in your own sober transformation. For more information on how we can personalize a program for you, call us today at (303) 710-8496.

Embracing Experiential Therapy in Recovery

Embracing Experiential Therapy in Recovery

By Featured, Therapy

Each individual will have a unique approach to effective treatment and recovery practices for overcoming the effects of addiction. Whether an individual is overcoming the use of drugs or processing the effects of alcohol on their life, engaging in the right programs, strategies, and experiences is crucial for a truly transformative recovery. Effective use of experiential therapy can make a huge difference in the efficacy of each individual’s treatment. Exploring the options available can ensure that each individual can create their best treatment and recovery plan.

What Is Experiential Therapy?

Getting actively engaged and involved with dedicated therapeutic modalities is essential to embrace their transformative effects truly. While education throughout the recovery process is essential, actively practicing strategies and exploring new experiences is necessary for effective sober change. Experiential therapy is a category of various strategies that help an individual get involved with their whole self to create the best possible approach to sobriety.

These therapies use various tools, activities, or other resources to empower those in recovery to explore past experiences, anxieties, depression, current stresses, new perspectives, and their best practices and health. By involving the whole self in treatment, each individual can better explore the most important and pertinent skills throughout recovery. They can also personalize their unique experiences in outpatient treatment and bring these skills into practice outside of a dedicated treatment setting.

Forms of Experiential Therapy

The term “experiential therapy” encompasses a wide array of skills, with each individual being able to choose and explore new options at each stage of their recovery. Finding the best practices will be a personal journey. Even if an individual does not reap the same benefits as a peer in one particular practice, it is always possible to adjust their approach to a new experience that can be more effective for their continued sober efforts.

Addiction uniquely affects each individual, and there is no “cookie-cutter” approach to change. Instead, finding the best collection of skills is necessary for each individual, with a dedicated recovery program being most effective when they are taken personally.

Art Therapy

Artistic outlets can be a great experience for those in recovery. For some, using art to express complex emotions or feelings that they may not have the vocabulary to express otherwise can be essential for processing these emotions and preventing them from building up in their mind.

Others may utilize art to form new communication strategies with family members, professionals, and peers. From expressing difficult emotions to exploring various artistic forms, each individual can find new modes of expression and create tangible representations of challenges and new perspectives to challenge and overcome the effects of addiction.

Using Meditation in Daily Life

Meditation can be a powerful skill to practice throughout addiction recovery. Having an opportunity to detach physically and emotionally from the stresses of daily life outside of the treatment facility during outpatient care can have myriad recovery benefits.

Using a dedicated meditation space can also empower those in recovery to practice mindfulness and explore their physical and emotional needs. Processing and relinquishing difficult emotions before they can manifest into other behaviors or taking a moment to acknowledge and work through urges and cravings prevalent throughout recovery is a powerful skill and experience for creating feelings of agency and control over the stresses of daily life.

Engaging in Psychodrama

Psychodrama is a unique and powerful form of experiential therapy where individuals are encouraged to act out scenes from their past and explore new perspectives and how these events may continue to impact their thoughts or emotions. Redpoint offers a dedicated six-week training in psychodrama to help those overcoming addiction better understand its continued effects on an individual. They can also process grief, trauma, and other personal challenges to continue engaging in a holistic form of healing while getting actively engaged with peers.

The Benefits of Somatic Experiencing

Somatic experiencing is a unique experience throughout recovery as an individual is guided not only through difficult thoughts and emotions but also encouraged and empowered to understand better how these feelings can manifest tangibly in their body. By helping individuals better connect their emotional state and physical body and attentiveness, they can better understand the connection between their emotional and physical needs. They can also embrace a more mindful approach to their continued health and sobriety. Professionals may use guided imagery, talking, and more in conjunction with a calming and safe environment to guide an individual through challenging feelings or memories.

There is never just one path to a healthy, sober future. Exploring the various opportunities where needed can ensure that each individual can create their own best recovery plan to use inside and outside a treatment facility. Each of these experiential therapy options and more can be instrumental in creating this individualized approach to sobriety. Working with professionals can help each individual create their collection of best practices for a healthy, sober future.

Experiential therapies offer new practices and ways to get involved in active recovery efforts. We at Redpoint are dedicated to personalizing your recovery program and finding the most effective experiences for your sober journey. We understand that no two journeys with addiction and recovery will be the same, and we are committed to providing flexible options, locations at Fort Collins, Glennwood Springs, and Longmont, and encouraging different avenues in which to explore how you can develop your best healthy and sober life. For more information on the experiential therapies offered that may benefit you or to speak to a caring, trained staff member about any questions or concerns, call us today at (303) 710-8496.

The Importance of In-Person Treatment

The Importance of In-Person Treatment

By Featured, Treatment

The advent of COVID-19 led to a massive shift in daily life for many. It affected both the use of addictive substances and made digital communication commonplace. Feelings of isolation, loneliness, personal and professional stress, and more were already difficult to process. COVID-19’s impact has further exacerbated these feelings, with many persisting in daily life today.

Overcoming an addiction to drugs or alcohol and establishing a healthy, sober life is a complex journey. Despite the technological changes and increasing prevalence of telehealth services, there is no replacement for in-person treatment. Its benefits can be essential for embracing genuine change in overcoming addiction.

The Advantages of In-Person Treatment

Advancements in telehealth and the increasing popularity of its use have been beneficial for many. It has provided newly accessible avenues to address a person’s need for treatment in overcoming addiction, mental health disorders, or a combination. However, It does have its limitations. Understanding the advantages in-person treatment provides can help individuals make the most informed choice about pursuing their needs for a healthy and sober future.

Building Trust and Connections

Sitting alongside professionals in a recovery setting can be intimidating for some. However, removing unnecessary barriers, like a computer screen, can also allow these relationships to form in a more open and honest space.

It can be difficult to truly connect with others on an emotional level when separated by these barriers and limitations. Microphone quality, camera quality, spotty internet, and more can all be reminders that an individual is not genuinely sharing this space. As a result, it can hinder the development of this critical relationship.

Likewise, it can be easy for many to use these barriers to avoid difficult subjects. Without a genuine sense of connection, dishonesty and avoidance can be easy, even if they act to an individual’s detriment in recovery. Being able to communicate honestly with either professionals or peers in recovery is about more than simply the words being spoken. Instead, it combines chosen words, tone, body language, eye contact, and much more that can get lost solely using digital mediums.

Exploring In-Person Communication Strategies

Developing effective communication strategies for each individual is also paramount throughout treatment. This helps an individual feel heard and understood by others and rebuild key relationships that have been affected by the use of drugs or alcohol.

In-person treatment allows those in recovery to explore how they best communicate with others in individual and group therapy sessions. Having options to communicate and using a combination of these skills is best nurtured by engaging, in-person treatment.

Creating a Healing Community

Overcoming addiction is not only about learning to identify and stave off cravings. Instead, it is a transformational experience, and many adjustments to daily life will have to be made. Changes in daily routines, thought patterns, rituals, hygiene, and even changes to social groups are all common to facilitate this healing and the development of a healthy and sustainable sober life. Dedicated recovery communities play a significant role in establishing these mindsets and can be difficult to form through only digital mediums.

In-person treatment is necessary to feel truly ingratiated in these recovery communities. Feelings of isolation and loneliness may still be prevalent throughout any stage of recovery, especially as an individual is overcoming the use of drugs or alcohol. Telehealth options can make it difficult to challenge these feelings truly. Individuals may not feel they are a part of a living, breathing, and evolving healing community.

In-person treatment can instead nurture these communities. It can aid in developing a healing culture and birth greater feelings of accountability and camaraderie. The heart of a community is difficult to reflect with an online medium.

Personalizing Strategies

Personalizing every treatment plan depending on the individual is paramount, as each journey in overcoming addiction will be unique. However, it can be challenging to personalize treatment modalities when limited by the available telehealth forms.

Instead, individualized treatments, experiential outpatient programs, and group sessions are all necessary. Communicating practical strategies can be difficult via telehealth options, with an individual needing to practice these with professionals for their most effective use actively.

Many strategies, such as experiential therapies like somatic experiencing or psychodrama, may also not translate well to a digital environment. Group therapies can also be challenging to conduct effectively. Each individual is navigating their barriers, and constant interruptions being common and distracting can hinder effective and necessary treatment. In-person treatment can alleviate many of these barriers and empower individuals to pursue the most personalized treatment possible without limiting their options throughout their treatment program.

Lasting Relationships

The relationships made and maintained in sobriety can be wholly transformative. Meeting others who understand and have navigated their challenges in sobriety can develop into amazing support throughout any stage of recovery. Building these relationships can define an individual and their journey to sobriety. In-person treatment empowers each person to develop lasting relationships with professionals and peers.

There is no replacement for the connections, community, and heart of dedicated, in-person treatment. We at Redpoint are committed to bringing these advantages and a genuine approach to healing and change through our dedicated outpatient programs. With multiple locations throughout Colorado, we can help reach you where you are and create an effective community of healing to help you overcome the use of drugs, alcohol, mental health disorders, and personal challenges that may accompany them. We personalize every recovery program, involving family, using local resources, and exploring various strategies to provide you with the most personalized and impactful care possible. For more information on our in-person treatment modalities, call to speak to us at (303) 710-8496.

Spiritual Awakening Through Recovery From Addiction

By Addiction, Alcohol Rehab, Community, Featured, Longmont Drug Rehab, Media, Mental Health, Misc, Therapy, Treatment

Before I got sober, I had a pretty negative outlook on religion. I thought it was just a bunch of rules and regulations with no real substance. But as I progressed in my recovery, I started to see how spirituality could be an integral part of the process—something that gave me hope and helped me stay focused on my goal of remaining sober.

When I first entered recovery, the idea of finding spirituality through religion didn’t seem appealing to me. After all, religion had been something that caused me a lot of pain and hurt in the past. However, as time went on and I got more involved in the recovery community, I realized that there was something deeper to spiritual awakening than just dogma and doctrine.

The main thing that helped me make peace with religion was learning about the concept of “Higher Power” or “God” – whatever name works for you. This is an idea that can be interpreted in many different ways, but essentially it boils down to believing in some kind of power greater than yourself that can help guide you through difficult times and provide you with strength when you need it most. For me, this meant learning to trust myself and others around me—something that was incredibly hard for me to do before getting sober.

I also began to understand how important belief systems are for people in recovery. Having a strong set of beliefs can give us the foundation we need to stay on track with our sobriety goals and help us cope with life’s challenges without turning back to drugs or alcohol as a crutch. Even if those beliefs don’t include traditional religious values, having something like meditation or mindfulness practices can provide us with a sense of peace and connection that we might not have found any other way.

As someone who used to be skeptical about religious principles, I now understand how they can be helpful when it comes to recovering from addiction. It’s amazing how much we can learn about ourselves when we open our minds up to new ideas and experiences! Spiritual awakening doesn’t have to come from any one particular place; instead it’s an individual journey where each person finds their own path towards inner peace and joy. No matter what your beliefs may be, taking time each day for self-reflection can provide great insight into your personal journey away from addiction towards wellness and health!

The Good Thing About Feeling Bad

By Addiction, Alcohol Rehab, Community, Featured, Longmont Drug Rehab, Mental Health, Misc, Therapy, Treatment

A potentially hollow greeting most of us hear on a near-daily basis: “How are you?” sets us up for failure without question. This is because most often we respond with “good,” “fine,” or my personal favorite “living the dream!” Unfortunately, the number of times I’ve answered this question I was not actually living the dream, most often I felt quite different on the inside but was too scared to answer their question honestly. When we hear this question, we so often have our “real” answer and one that we want to share, and due to social constructs and anxiety, we often avoid sharing any negative or “bad” experience when that is truly where we are at. Why do we do this? What makes us scared of living up to our authentic selves when given the opportunity by someone to share how we are doing? Unless it is the case where this person doesn’t want to know how we truly are doing (DUN DUN DUUUUUN). Although this may be true, the underlying experience of the question surrounds an underlying experience that many of us have in common, we don’t want to admit to others that we feel “bad.” 


When people share, they feel bad or “not good” has always left me with a strong question mark over my head, but something we all can admit we’ve experienced. Bad is a human experience that includes so much, including rejection, sad, grieving, anger, anxiety, and so much more. When we feel the tightness of our chest from anxiety, the hot sweaty rush to our head from anger, or the overwhelming heaviness that is grief; we boil it down to one simple word: “bad.” Although this word could come across as all-encompassing, it leaves out a strong long-term implication of each of these emotions, in that none of them are bad. Each of these emotions, although loaded with fear and stress, they serve very specific functions for our bodies, minds, and souls to help us grow, learn about ourselves, and develop resiliency for the future. My hope in writing this blog today is to identify where these fear-based experiences stem from, the factors that influence them, and in turn reframe the experience of these emotions away from bad and into a better understanding of how much good they can do for us in hopes of promoting better self-love and acceptance for all parts of our experience, despite how much they can hurt at times.  


What are good and bad emotions? Most stereotypically we often associate good with happy, excited, content, joy, love, or satisfied. We are taught to seek these experiences as our purpose in life, in that we should always seek to feel these things to be satisfied with life. When we have this expectation, black-and-white thinking is present, leading us to perceive any other experience to be bad. But where does this experience stem from? One major factor that is often discussed is underlying messages from the media that we consume. This has influenced the internalization of high expectations by presenting people doing well with strong connections, love, admiration, and self-confidence. When characters do not have this, we often experience the exact opposite, disconnection and hatred from others. Due to us being social beings, we fear the exile of disconnection. An example of this would be how movies and TV shows instill messages of how we “should” feel about emotions. Imagine the common scenario of a high school lunchroom and the new kid is walking around trying to find a spot, when watching it we feel our skin crawl and heart race in embarrassment for that kiddo. Inevitably that kid escapes the situation by skipping lunch, eating in the bathroom, or eating by themselves. In this, we learn not only the physical reactions to that situation, but we recognize that embarrassment is bad and something to escape. This situation is one among so many that we covertly learn how to feel each time we watch TV, a movie, or even listen to some music. 


Another major factor that influences this dichotomous thinking is attachment perceptions growing up. Our early experiences have a strong influence on the way we interact with both ourselves and others in that the messages we receive when expressing our emotions throughout our life. If I receive the message growing up that when I act happy, content, or calm I get to experience love, affection, and compassion from others, specifically parent or guardian figures. However, on the contrary, if I learn that if I show anger, fear, or anxiety and that leads to disconnection or personal failure, then I am going to avoid with every fiber of my being to stay connected to those around me by being “good.” Even if this comes with long-term consequences of increased anxiety, depression, trauma, and even physical problems such as heart disease or cancer. This strong aversion to any negative feelings will enable us to attempt to avoid sharing our negative feelings with others, because long story short, we believe it will end with rejection from others, leading to us rejecting crucial parts of ourselves. We hope for a better connection with others, but because we hide parts of ourselves, we end up disconnecting from everything and everyone. This rejection can make us walk away with stories or narratives about ourselves that are rooted in shame, negativity, and just aren’t true. 


One thing that is often lost when it comes to “bad” emotions is the incredible functionality of them and how much they help us. Whether it’s anger giving us the strength and adrenaline to state and uphold our boundaries and protect ourselves or sadness allowing us to recognize the underlying hurt and suffering that we hold, these emotions allow us to feel most connected to ourselves. On another side of things, they allow others to better understand what our needs are! If you’re with a friend or loved one and they begin to cry, we automatically know that they need connection and compassion. This is an innate human experience and the more these underlying cultural and attachment narratives tell us things like sadness or anger are bad, the more we disconnect from others, ourselves, and our needs. 


So, if I learned to hide all my negative feelings growing up and disconnect from myself does that mean I’m just screwed? Of course not! The beauty of the situation is there is still time to change our perceptions and embrace all parts of ourselves using corrective emotional experiences. This comes in two different forms, interpersonal and intrapersonal. Interpersonal corrective experiences come from our interactions with other people, meaning giving all parts of ourselves and specifically our nervous systems experiences that challenge the underlying narratives. For example, if a child grows up experiencing emotional neglect from their parents when they experience anger, shame, or fear, they could walk away with the belief that they are undeserving of love or there is something innately wrong about them. This can enable this child throughout their life to disconnect from others by pushing them away or using substances/behaviors to rupture relationships. This happens because these underlying narratives are so strong that they convince us all the way down to our innate bodily experiences that we will be rejected, so we need to push them away before they can hurt us. A corrective experience can look like allowing our example person (whether still in childhood or as an adult) to experience both their negative emotions (e.g., fear, anger, shame) and still retain the relationship and not experience rejection. Although this is a vulnerable experience, over time it can change the underlying narrative if they experience negative emotions and still get their needs met. On the other side of this intrapersonal corrective emotional experiences stem from our internal experience and can look like strongly internalized self-love and compassion. Essentially giving the same acceptance and care from our example of an interpersonal corrective experience and make it all our own acceptance and compassion of ourselves when we feel negative. 


These experiences show the beauty and “good” that comes from “bad” emotions. Although we can be taught by family, media, school, and friend groups that these bad emotions are something to avoid or to be shameful of, they are the innate thing that helps us grow. The more we reject parts of our own experience, the more we disconnect from ourselves and others and in turn, the worse things get. I encourage anyone reading this to be more curious about your negative emotions. What are they there for? How do they make you feel physically? Get to know and accept all parts of yourself and I hope the negative parts feel lighter because of it. 


Staying Sober During the Holidays

By Addiction, Alcohol Rehab, Community, Featured, Mental Health, Misc, Therapy, Treatment

The holidays can be a joyous time of year for most, but for those struggling with substance abuse, it can present a unique set of challenges. With the hustle and bustle of the season, it can be easy to slip back into old habits. However, with the right strategies, you can stay sober during the holidays and still enjoy the festivities. There are many ways to stay healthy and happy during the holiday season, from attending support group meetings to setting realistic goals for yourself. By taking the time to plan ahead and create a solid foundation for yourself, you can stay sober and enjoy the holidays without the risk of relapse. With the right attitude and the right tools, you can make the most of the season and have a sober and happy holiday.


Learn To Enjoy Yourself

When we let life pass us by while we’re focused on our next drink, we miss out on a lot of things. Substance abuse doesn’t just impact your health, but it also impacts your relationships, your finances, and your ability to be productive and happy in life. By letting your drinking consume you, you miss out on all of the other aspects of life that make it worth living. Spending time with friends and family, exploring new hobbies, or pursuing a passion are all great ways to let go of the stress of the season and just enjoy the moment. Creating new traditions or building on old ones is another great way to focus on enjoying the season. By taking time to appreciate the traditions you grew up with and adding your own spin to them, you can create new memories to cherish for years to come.


Focus on Gratitude

One of the best ways to stay happy during the holidays is to shift your focus from negativity to gratitude. Instead of dwelling on the stress of the season or the fact that you don’t have enough time to get everything done, focus on what you have to be thankful for. This can be as simple as writing down three things you’re grateful for each day or setting aside time to help someone in need. By taking time to be thankful for the things in life you have, you shift your focus away from being overwhelmed by the things you don’t have time for or the things you’re lacking. This can help you stay grounded and use the holiday season as an opportunity to give back to others.


Use the Time to Give Back To Others

While the holidays can be a great time to spend with loved ones, it can also be a busy and stressful season. By taking the time to give back to others in need, you can shift the focus of the season away from your own stress and create a positive impact in the world. Whether you volunteer at a soup kitchen, collect toys for children in need, or help make decorations for someone’s house, giving back at this time of year is a great way to stay healthy and happy. The holidays are a perfect time to do this, as many organizations are in need of help during this busy time of year. Taking the time to help others is one of the best ways to stay focused on gratitude and stay healthy and happy during the season.


Let Yourself Get Swept Up in the Season

While it’s important to stay focused on staying healthy and happy, it’s also important to let yourself get swept up in the holiday spirit. By letting yourself get lost in the season, you can make the most of the festivities while staying sober. You can do this by creating a fun holiday schedule for yourself, setting goals for the season, and accepting help when needed. By setting goals for yourself during this busy time of year, such as attending a certain number of events or finishing a project you’ve been working on, you can use this as a motivator to stay on track with your health and happiness goals. Being open to receiving help when needed is another great way to stay happy and healthy during this busy time of year.


With all of the festivities, family gatherings, and temptations, it can be difficult to remain committed to sobriety. However, with the right strategies and support, it is possible to stay healthy and happy throughout the holiday season. By developing self-awareness, having an open dialogue with family and friends, and creating a safe environment, those in recovery can stay on the right track. This article will explore the different strategies for staying sober during the holidays, and how to stay healthy and happy while doing so.

Meditation for People Who Hate Meditating

By Addiction, Alcohol Rehab, Community, Featured, Mental Health, Misc, Therapy, Treatment

Most people are aware of the benefits that mediation brings; reduced stress and anxiety, increased self-awareness, improved memory and sleep, just to name a few. Nobody is going to argue that focusing the mind and practicing mindfulness isn’t a good thing. The problem is that for many, the path to finding that quiet place seems to be very narrow. A lot of people have an idea in their head about what mediation is: sitting quietly, alone, and turning off your thoughts for extended periods of time. While this is certainly one method that many use to practice mediation, the reality is that it does not work for everybody. The good news is that there are an almost infinite number of ways that someone can practice getting out of their own head and practicing mindfulness. Here are just three examples of meditative practices for people who hate meditating.

Mindful Cooking

 This isn’t the hurried meal that gets thrown together after a long day at work. It’s crucial to not rush when practicing mindful cooking in order for it to be a contemplative and soothing activity. Just as you would make time to exercise, set aside some time to prepare a meal. Consider cooking as a form of self-care rather than a duty. By approaching meal preparation in this manner, you may immerse yourself in it rather than just concentrating on getting it done. The goal of meditation is to enjoy the journey.

Of course, you get to eat what you make. That is the best aspect of mindful cooking. Traditional meditation certainly has many health advantages, but those advantages are not often as apparent as the immediate enjoyment of a wonderful meal. Feel good about yourself since you not only made time for yourself to unwind, but you also prepared a satisfying meal. The best way to nourish both your body and mind is to thoughtfully prepare your food.

The process of cooking a meal intuitively incorporates all five of the senses. Be intentional about paying attention to them during the activity. The sounds of the knife hitting the cutting board, the smells of the onions sautéing, the feel of the dough in your fingers. Cooking a meal is the perfect space to connect with yourself and your surroundings using your senses.



 Mindful exercise is a great way to relieve stress. Even though rhythmic exercise alone can help you reduce stress, the benefits increase if you practice mindfulness at the same time.

In order to engage in mindful exercise, you must be totally present in the moment—paying attention to how your body feels rather than your regular cares or anxieties. Concentrate on the feelings in your limbs and how your breathing accompanies your movement to “switch off” your thoughts.

Focus on the physicality of each step when you’re walking or running, for instance—the sensation of your feet contacting the ground, and the rhythm of your breathing as you move. If you find that your mind starts to wonder, try to bring them back to your breathing and movement.



A good jigsaw puzzle can be captivating, whether you’re finishing it by yourself or with family or friends. They also promote mindfulness and assist with brain function, which are both long-lasting advantages. Being mindful involves paying attention to our bodies’ current activities and our feelings. In today’s quick-paced, technologically dependent environment, it’s a useful ability to have.

The level of thought, patience, and focus required by puzzles is sure to stretch the intellect. It’s meditative and enjoyable to focus while sorting among the pieces or gazing at the image for extended periods of time. Our brains release dopamine as we put two puzzle pieces together, which enhances our motivation, mood, and memory.

Spending hours putting together hundreds of puzzle pieces may seem like a mindless activity but can in fact be a great exercise in mindfulness if some intentionality is incorporated. Think about the challenge in front of you and understand that no external or internal factors are going to affect the end result of this project in front of you. Allow yourself to get lost and forget what time it is, enjoy your heart rate slowing down. Enjoy the process.



Close Menu

We are here to help.


The Redpoint Center
1831 Lefthand Cir, Suite H
Longmont, CO 80501

Contact Us.


Please let us know what's on your mind. Have a question for us? Ask away.
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.