Recovery Connections

John Schwary is CEO of Transitional Living Communities, an 850-bed recovery program he founded in Mesa, Arizona January 9, 1992, when he had a year sober. He's in his 28th year of recovery.

In these posts, he views life mostly through the lenses of recovery. While the blog is factual, he often disguises events and people to protect anonymity.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014


Clients often use the word "feelings" when talking about what is going on with them.

"I feel like everyone's picking on me."

"I feel like they have it in for me."

"I feel like no one understands me."

But, when we live our lives only on the basis of how we feel it can be dangerous. Especially for us addicts.

For example, it was all about my feelings when I picked up. When I slammed the needle in my arm. When these things happened I was either depressed or angry. I simply wanted to feel better because I was in a funk.

I doubt if any of us ever made a logical decision to use drugs or alcohol. It was always about how we felt.

We never said "I think the logical thing I can do for my life today is to go to the neighborhood and buy heroin." It was always about feelings.

While feelings are a wonderful part of being human, they change like the shifting sands. Right now, reading this, I feel one way. Five minutes later, I might feel different.

We shouldn't ignore our feelings, we just need to be aware of them so we can make positive decisions.