Tag Archives: Sobriety

Tag Archives: Sobriety


MusiCares Sober Jam on August 20, 2019 with Cumberland HeightsThe MusiCares® Sober Jam is a quarterly event offering musicians an opportunity to perfor, in a safe and sober environment. The Sober Jam begins at 5:30PM with solo performances, facilitated by emcee Phil Bogard. Each event includes an unannounced special guest performance. All attendees — both on and off-stage — are considered to be active participants in the Sober Jam. By simply showing up, listening to music, and offering an applause between songs, each guest plays a meaningful role in creating a safe environment for the performers.

This event is brought to you by Cumberland Heights Recovery Center & Nashville Recovery Center.

WHAT: MusiCares Sober Jam
WHEN: August 20, 2019 from 5:30PM – 9:00PM
WHERE: World Music Nashville – 7069 US-70S, Nashville, TN 37221

Using the 12-Step programs to enhance mind, body and spirit

Recovery is much more than treating a substance use disorder (SUD) as it is finding one’s balance in mind, body and spirit. Many people attest to leading a happier, more fulfilling life once they’ve dedicated their life to sobriety and purpose – and the 12-Steps also aid in this type of journey as a person finds their way to healing. A few years ago, writer Johnny F. shared his experience with the 12-Step program and rebuilding his mind, body spirit connection. He explained:

“…As my alcoholism progressed, my drinking increased and life became more and more unmanageable…Many speak of the spiritual and cognitive shift which is necessary for peace to exist in our world. Due to the good people of AA, the Steps are already known and well respected…where millions of lives have already been changed.” 

12-Step programs offer a structured program for those who are lost to come and find a path towards solidarity and purpose. With a goal of abstinence, those in addiction recovery can utilize the 12-Step program to bolster their support against relapse, while also strengthening their connection with a Higher Power.

12-Step Philosophy, a blog space for sharing ideas, experiences and resources related to addiction recovery and the 12-Step program, notes that life circumstances such as illness, traumatic events, emotional issues, and other life challenges can shake up the root of our core – and in many instances, this is where we’ll find ourselves battling substance abuse or another harmful addictive behavior.

It’s often that desire to seek something external – something outside of ourselves (such as love, success, money, etc.) that keeps us distracted and makes it hard for us to focus on what really matters. If you’re ready to embrace a life of sobriety and build a strong network of people through 12-Step programs, speak with a professional from Cumberland Heights today.

Cumberland Heights is a nonprofit alcohol and drug addiction treatment center located on the banks of the Cumberland River in Nashville, Tennessee. On a sprawling 177-acre campus, we are made up of two 12-Step immersion campuses, 12 outpatient recovery centers and 4 sober living homes. We believe that each person has a unique story to tell – and that’s why we always put the patient first. For more information, call 1-800-646-9998 today.

Your personal recovery journey is like a finger print. While many of them look and feel the same, unique experiences make our stories one of a kind. They can inspire, heal, create hope or even push someone to take that first step in their own journey.

Liz sits down with our Alumni Relations & Volunteer Coordinator to talk about what 16 years of sobriety looks like and how engaging with friends in recovery kept Jaime clean. Also in this episode: relationships that make you sick, a spiritual awakening while free-falling 30 feet, and Jaime's greatest triumph in recovery. Hint: It's a person and he only stands about 2.5 feet tall.

That’s what Cumberland Heights’ new podcast “Recovery Live” is all about. Liz Stanislawski, Marketing and Public Relations Manager and former WSMV journalist will be interviewing alumni, staff, family members, counselors – really anyone who has been touched by addiction. The podcast is co-produced by Jaime Gibbons, Alumni Relations & Volunteer Coordinator. She is the very first guest, talking about what 16 years of sobriety looks like.

Travis Meadows

Cumberland Heights also welcomed Travis Meadows on the show. The successful singer/songwriter is known for penning hits for several country music stars including Wynonna Judd, Jake Owen, Eric Church, Brothers Osborne and Hank Williams Jr. He also has several albums of his own like “Killing Uncle Buzzy” which was inspired by journal entries he wrote while he was in treatment at Cumberland Heights.

Future guests include a meth addict whose story was broadcast to millions on the A&E reality show, “Intervention”, a teen who grew up in the recovery world and ended up becoming addicted himself and a woman who as a young teen had to take care of her siblings when her mom disappeared for days.

These stories don’t sugarcoat. They are real, raw and honest. From teenagers with just a couple years of sobriety, to those who haven’t picked up a drink or drug in 30 plus years.

We are so excited to share this new project with you and hope you’ll gain as much from listening as we have putting it together.

Click here to listen!

Learn the celebrities who have spoken about sobriety

Celebrities are known for their charisma and talent, but they’re also often talked about outside of the spotlight. Many interviews have been conducted with celebrities surrounding their use (and abuse) of substances – and while we see so many celebrities struggle, there are just as many who’ve made the decision to stay sober. Thankfully, mental health and substance abuse have become less taboo over the years – and celebrities are starting to open up about their experiences.

According to Insider, these are some celebrities who’ve been practicing a sober lifestyle for quite some time – and they’ve spoken up about it, too.

  1. Eminem

With 11 years of sobriety, Eminem has come a long way since almost dying from an accidental methadone overdose back in 2007. Last year was his 10-year mark, and he continues to push towards his recovery.

  1. Joe Manganiello

One of the most powerful people in media, Joe struggled with addiction at a young age – and he had to learn that just because he didn’t fit the typical “stereotype” of what a person with addiction looked like, didn’t mean he didn’t need help.

  1. Toby Maguire

He may have been a superhero on screen, but Toby found himself recovering from alcoholism many years ago; he once explained in an interview with Playboy magazine about his experience with Alcoholics Anonymous (AA). He stated:

“It’s just all practical. There are no holes in the program. It’s so, so simple. I come in, I ask for help. It has totally changed my life”.

Sometimes it’s hard to imagine the trials and tribulations that successful stars have gone through; we see them on the screen and attribute so much happiness and ease to their lives that we can’t quite comprehend how addiction can enter the picture. Celebrities experience real-life issues, too – and thankfully, more and more are seeking help.

Cumberland Heights is a nonprofit alcohol and drug addiction treatment center located on the banks of the Cumberland River in Nashville, Tennessee. On a sprawling 177-acre campus, we are made up of two 12-Step immersion campuses, 12 outpatient recovery centers and 4 sober living homes. We believe that each person has a unique story to tell – and that’s why we always put the patient first. For more information, call 1-800-646-9998 today.

Does social media and sobriety influence each other?

Research estimates suggest that worldwide, there are around 2.34 billion social media users – and that number is expected to increase to 2.95 billion in the year 2020. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, you name it – there are more apps than a person can count, and they all have a place in various aspects of living. Social media used to be simply for connecting with long-lost friends, but it’s become a staple component of daily life – to give updates, to network, to propel movements and to help people. The addiction recovery realm has seen a surge of social media applications specifically for this – to connect with other people in recovery, to seek advice for issues pertaining to sobriety or addiction, to find meet-up groups and others. At this day in age, the question still remains: Is social media helping or harming? And, more, specifically, is it helping or harming those who are pursuing sobriety?

Social Media and Mental Well-being

According to a 2018 publication titled, “Digital Health Practices, Social Media Use, and Mental Well-being Among Teens and Young Adults in the U.S.”, social media is having some pretty negative effects when it comes to mental health:

  • It’s leading teens and youth to feel “less than” compared to their peers
  • It’s hurting those who are victimized or receive a continuous stream of negative comments
  • It’s contributing to the rise of depression and anxiety
  • And more

Of course, the experience individuals have with social media could be due to a number of things – how often they’re on social media, which platforms they use, how they utilize these platforms and more. For others, social media serves a number of potential benefits when it comes to mental well-being:

  • Individuals can use social media to connect with others who are struggling with certain health problems
  • Social media can provide information to those looking for health-related news and self-help tools
  • Creative expression through social media platforms can be therapeutic for some users
  • And more

How does all of this fit into addiction recovery? Mental well-being is critical for individuals pursuing sobriety, and while outpatient treatment is incredibly successful in providing support, tools and resources to helping a person maintain and achieve their recovery goals, a person does return home to their “normal” life at the end of the day – and the way they use social media could either help or hinder their progress in recovery.

It’s All About the Way You Apply It

A study conducted by researchers from California found that those in addiction recovery tend to be more honest about their experiences through social media support services rather than face-to-face. Positive reactions on social media were found to build up online support as well, which can certainly have positive implications for someone in recovery. A 2017 study published in the journal Drug and Alcohol Dependence found that advice and support and the two most common motivating factors for those in addiction recovery using social media – and if you find that it does provide an added level of security to your sobriety journey while you work in your outpatient treatment program, you should certainly maximize on the benefits of this.

In 2017, Beau Mann explained his story to Business News Daily of using social media to his advantage in addiction recovery. He explained,

“I was 24 years old, and I was ready to break free from my addiction. I entered a 12-Step program, became part of a supportive community, and began my journey towards recovery.”

He explained that while in recovery, he experienced loneliness – and this loneliness led him to create a recovery support network online that brought people together. In 2015, he launched Sober Grid, where his business has now helped over 80,000 people connect with others in a community dedicated to sobriety. For him, social media was only a stepping stone towards creating a platform that would change the recovery world for the better. He stated,

“As I know from experience, becoming and remaining sober is anything but easy. Without support networks in place, it almost feels impossible. That’s why I’m so incredibly proud to have built a platform that connects individuals with a community dedicated to recovering from addiction.”

Apps to Support Your Sobriety Journey

In addition to Sober Grid, there are many other apps that you can utilize to help boost your motivation in sobriety:

  • Twenty-Four Hours a Day – a meditative app with daily prayers and teachings
  • 12 Steps AA Companion – you get the Big Book of AA right at your fingertips, along with prayers, promises and a sobriety calculator
  • I Am Sober – it notifies you of new milestones you’ve reached in recovery
  • Happify – this app includes over 30 audio recordings that will guide you towards positive thoughts

If you’re ready to become more independent in your recovery while also maintaining a strong supportive foundation in therapy, group activities and more, speak with a professional from Cumberland Heights at Crossville Treatment.

Cumberland Heights in Crossville Tennessee is a 12-Step based outpatient alcohol and drug rehab program. Cumberland Heights’ Intensive Outpatient Program is designed for individuals age 18 and above who may be in the early stages of dependency or are experiencing problems with alcohol or drug use. If you’re ready to seek help today, call us at 931-250-5200.

Learning to overcome obstacles in sobriety with 12-Step programs

There is so much ambiguity about what the future holds, and recovery requires that we take a giant leap into the unknown. Whether you’ve been sober for 1 month or 1 year, you’ll find that obstacles will always come and go; while it can be an incredibly nerve wracking experience, the reality is that everyone is trying to navigate a journey that isn’t always predictable. A 2015 study published in the Journal of Social Work Practice in the Addictions explains that even communities as a whole face obstacles such as access to treatment, access to other professionals, access to peer support groups and barrier to confidentiality – but what about individuals specifically in recovery?

There’s no doubt that you’ll run into obstacles throughout your recovery, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t face them. With so many ways to manage and work through these obstacles – and with so many people ready to support you, you’re only one step away from getting closer towards your goals.

Obstacles Faced in Recovery

Just as each person is different, there are unique obstacles every person faces as they explore the journey to sobriety. In 2017, writer Emma Miah wrote for Your Story – a website that publishes various stories of triumph and news from around the world. She identified several obstacles, such as:

Fear of change

The ongoing pattern of addiction can become comforting over time, as a person has relied on substances to ease them at various times or situations in their lives. Recovery entails finding newer, healthier outlets – and this change can be intimidating at first.

Fear of relapse

Relapse is one of the most commonly talked about fears for addiction recovery, because nobody wants to feel as though they’ve “failed” or that they’re “weak”. Relapse is actually quite common – but that doesn’t make it scary nonetheless.

Becoming too bored

A number of people in addiction recovery have feared that they won’t be able to have fun anymore – and for the first few months (or even the first year), it may feel like there’s nothing to do. In treatment, however, daily schedules are meant to combat this fear of boredom.

Fear of rejection and/or abandonment

The realization of the harm that’s been done to others as a result of addiction can bear too much stress, anxiety and shame for a person – and in learning of what happened when a person was “high” or intoxicated, it’s commonplace for a person to worry that they’re friends, family and other loved ones may not want to be around anymore.

Difficulties in discovering one’s identity

Recovery requires that a person to reshape their life – and during this time of healing and rejuvenation, a person learns more about who they really are. It’s a scary process, especially if an individual feels lost in figuring it out – but it’s a journey worth taking.

12-Step Programs and the Benefits

Programs such as Alcoholics Anonymous tend to serve as beautiful additions to treatment – and through these programs, a person can build their social support network to include not only the peers around them, but also a sponsor whom they can rely on in times of need. The American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) explains that addiction isn’t a destination, but rather a journey; and 12-Step programs embrace this journey through a number of avenues such as:

  • Working with a therapist
  • Attending and engaging in 12-Step meetings
  • Collaborating with a sponsor and building a strong bond
  • Exploring problems or psychological resistance to the program
  • “Working” the 12-Steps not just in meetings but also throughout a person’s life
  • Becoming involved in 12-Step activities, such as in social events, retreats and conventions
  • And more

Many of the fears experienced in recovery can be ameliorated through 12-Step programs because they remind those in recovery that they’re not the only one going through problems. Spirituality – such as developing a stronger connection with God or another Higher Power – can help save a person’s life by helping them find purpose and fulfillment in daily life. ASAM noted,

“Twelve-Step Recovery addresses the psychology of the person with the addiction as well as the individual’s spirituality – his/her values, his/her connectedness to others, and his/her willingness to engage with others and humbly ask for help.”

By applying oneself fully to the program while also attending regular treatment, the fears expressed earlier seem much less intimidating – because there’s an entire group of people whom a person can relate to.

Seek Treatment Now

If you’ve been struggling with addiction and are ready to turn your life around, speak with a professional from Cumberland Heights today. There are always going to be obstacles in recovery, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t move forward with treatment because of them – in fact, treatment will provide you with the tools you need to work through these obstacles and become a much stronger person.

Cumberland Heights is a nonprofit alcohol and drug-addiction treatment center located on the banks of the Cumberland river in Nashville, Tennessee. On a sprawling 177-acre campus, we are made up of 2 12-Step immersion campuses, 12 outpatient recovery centers and 4 sober living homes. We believe that each person has a unique story to tell – and that’s why we always put the patient first.

How Jodie Sweetin went through recovery and discusses her sobriety on social media

Sometimes the movies and television shows we grew up watching can have a lasting impact on us, but we don’t realize until we’re older that those behind the screen have just as many challenges as those off screen. Media can depict such beautiful images of what family and love means, of what happiness is truly all about – but behind the scenes, everyone is truly going through something. ‘Full House’ star Jodi Sweetin (who played Stephanie Tanner) has her own struggles with addiction, and as she’s become more open throughout the years about her substance abuse issues, she’s also pushed hard in her recovery.

This past March marked Jodi Sweetin’s 8th anniversary of sobriety, and she’s shared with many sources what she’s gone through to get there. She told Weekly several years ago,

“We all have our demons. When we finally learn to let them go, we get to live and be free.”

After Jodi’s star appearance on Full House, she had difficulty transitioning back into a “normal” childhood. At 14, she started drinking – and over the next decade, she moved back and forth between ecstasy, methamphetamine and crack. According to The Fix, a website that highlights stories of addiction recovery and sobriety, Jodi had previously stated that at that period in her life, she was having difficulty finding out who she was – and she relied on drugs to help her fill the void. At age 26, Jodi sought out rehabilitation to finally push past her addictions.

This past year, Jodi has been honored at the 10th Annual Experience, Strength and Hope Awards, which recognizes individuals who have shared their experiences with addiction and have worked hard towards recovery. Amidst her search for herself and her sobriety, Jodi has rediscovered her first passion – acting – and rejoined the cast of Fuller House in 2016. As a woman who has gone through so many challenging events in her life, she’s truly overcoming these obstacles and pushing stronger than ever towards a life of ultimate happiness and health.

Cumberland Heights in Crossville Tennessee is a 12-Step based outpatient alcohol and drug rehab program. Cumberland Heights’ Intensive Outpatient Program is designed for individuals age 18 and above who may be in the early stages of dependency or are experiencing problems with alcohol or drug use. If you’re ready to seek help today, call us at 931-250-5200.

Celebrating Ariana Grande’s brother’s sobrietyDrugfree.org estimates that 23.5 million Americans are addicted to alcohol and drugs – and as our society has become more open to celebrating the courage act of recovery, celebrities are taking full-swing in talking about how proud they are of their own friends and family members. On February 16 of this year, Ariana Grande – one of the world’s biggest artists right now – congratulated her brother, Frankie Grande on his 20 months of sobriety. Frankie talked about his sobriety on Instagram by stating,

“I am extremely proud. This hasn’t been easy. When you get sober…life still happens. You have to deal with all the same highs and lows as you did when you were using but now you don’t have the ability to numb yourself. You feel it. You feel everything. But there is so much beauty in that.”

Ariana Grande has gone through a lot this past year, with her former boyfriend and close friend Mac Miller passing away from an accidental drug overdose in September of 2018. Mac Miller had a profound influence on Frankie Grande, as he’s stated before that Miller was the person who encouraged him to get sober. iHeartRadio explained earlier this year that for Frankie, Malcolm’s (Mac Miller) support is what encouraged him to detox safely – and it was after seeking out rehabilitation that Frankie found a community whom he could lean on.

Nobody chooses to struggle with addiction, but once help is sought, a person’s life can change dramatically. We tend to seek out substances as a solution, but it only perpetuates our problems because it distracts us rather than helping us deal with them effectively. For Frankie Grande, 20-months-sober is only one milestone of many that he plans to work through. Having the support of his sister only further emphasizes the amazing strides he’s taken towards changing his life around.

Cumberland Heights is a nonprofit alcohol and drug-addiction treatment center located on the banks of the Cumberland river in Nashville, Tennessee. On a sprawling 177-acre campus, we are made up of 2 12-Step immersion campuses, 12 outpatient recovery centers and 4 sober living homes. We believe that each person has a unique story to tell – and that’s why we always put the patient first.

Your body is dangling, your heart racing, your stomach drops and then it hits – euphoria. You just plunged 30 plus feet, literally hanging by a thread – well actually a rope, but you get the idea.

More than two dozen Cumberland Heights employees took part in The Big Swing Event April 15 and sure, it was an amusing way to kick off the week, but we did it for much more than the thrill. It was a lesson in trust, peer support and letting go.

“It’s your decision and yours alone,” said Recreation Therapist Jimmy Hudgens.

He was talking about the cable you pull when you’re ready to take the plunge. But for those familiar with AA, we’re thinking, “This sounds a lot like Step 3.” Wait a second! This whole exercise mirrors recovery” (or for others, simply letting go of control).

I was the second person in our afternoon swing group to go. The counselor who went before me did it effortlessly. She even looked relaxed, as if she were swinging back and forth on a hammock. I’m thinking to myself, “Oh, this is easy. I have nothing to be afraid of.” And then my friends on the ground started pulling me up. If you’re not familiar with The Big Swing, it’s kind of like those hoisting you up are playing tug of war – everyone is in a line stepping backwards, yanking on a rope to pull you to the top. So, I see them on the ground getting further and further away and all of a sudden, I’m looking down on acres upon acres of rolling hills as if I’m the camera lens on a drone. In my head I’m thinking “Oh gosh this is high.” It wasn’t until I heard people on the ground say “It’s going to be okay” that I realized I was speaking out loud. And then I had made it all the way to the top.

I nervously scream below, “So I just pull this thing?”

I hear a resounding “Yes!”

And I didn’t think. I just did it. I pulled it. And I screamed. I screamed really, really loudly. And I didn’t stop screaming for several seconds. And it was super scary. But it felt amazing. It was a rush like I haven’t felt before. And as you swing back and forth coming down, you just get to bask in the afterglow. All of my friends were happy for me, and then, even better, I got to be a part of their experience when they took the plunge!

Every person there had a job – to spot someone on the ladder, to hoist someone up, to stop pulling the rope when the swinger didn’t want to go any higher. We had to support one another and we had to trust each other.

Others who had done the swing before took it a step further. They put a blindfold on before they dropped. Josh K. was one of them.

“It was a totally different experience because being up there, being that high you can’t see down so you’re just trusting everything is set up right. Here we go. Blind jump. It’s wild,” said Josh.

“Walking by faith and not by sight may be easier than we expect,” said Jimmy.

April R. who organized the event took part in it as a patient at Cumberland Heights a little over three years ago.

“It’s more just fun now since I’m really not afraid of heights, but at the time it was very therapeutic, very special. It was me saying ‘I surrender.’ I just let go and it was emotional and moving,” said April.

She wasn’t alone in her experience. Jimmy says this exercise means more to the patients than we may ever know.

“I had one guy come to an alumni reunion and I recall that patient being very quiet when he was in treatment, but when he came to the reunion he said the swing was his first spiritual experience. It was about giving up control for him. It was his spiritual awakening he said. And you would never know because he never said anything until years later,” said Jimmy.

Recreational therapy is a staple here at Cumberland Heights and I’ve always appreciated it, but I never fully understood it until that day. In treatment you can do everything by the book and go through the steps as you’re told, but it’s usually moments like these when people really find their center, higher power or willingness to let go. Others may find those things in group therapy or in the art room. Everyone responds differently to certain therapies in treatment and Cumberland Heights works really hard to honor that. That’s just one of the things that makes this place so special.

The Original AA Manuscript written by Bill WAlumni Relations of Cumberland Heights invites you to participate in Back to Basics: Steps and Stories. This intensive 12 step workshop, much like the original step working format from the 1940’s, is open to all persons in recovery.

All materials will be provided for participants as well as box lunches.

Event Details:

WHAT: Back to Basics – Steps and Stories
WHEN: Saturday May 18th 9:00AM – 4:00PM
WHERE: River Road Main Campus – Ishee Chapel

All three of our guest facilitators, Wally Patton, Brit Schanks and Carver Brown,  are experts in Back to Basics and have taken hundreds of people through the 12 steps in group settings.
We will begin promptly at 9:00AM and end at 4:00PM, please make sure to arrive no later than 8:45AM to get your supplies and seats. During lunch there will be an assignment to process with your partner or small group. Please be prepared to stay for the duration of the workshop, each participant should begin and end the day with the group.

  • STEP 1 - Personal Information

    The RSVP cost for this event is $5.00 per person. Please provide your name, email, cell phone and number of tickets desired to secure your reservation.

  • STEP 2 - Credit Card and Billing Information

    We accept MasterCard VISA American Express & Discover

    There is a required $5.00 charge per ticket that is non-refundable and will go to the Cumberland Heights Foundation General Donations Fund. Please select the number of tickets needed and enter your credit card number, expiration month and year, CVN number and billing address to where your credit card statement is sent below.

  • Due to limited number of tickets available we can only allow up to 4 people per family/reservation.
  • Ticket price total: .00


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