ABOUT 12 ESSENTIAL INSIGHTS FOR EMOTIONAL SOBRIETY
Be honest. Few days go by where you don’t find your sense of balance thrown off by what someone said about you, how a meeting went, what your social media contacts are doing, how your fortune changed during the day, or your fears about coming events.
Most of us face this kind of anxiety, sadness, worry—call it what you will—every day of the week. Most of the times, these things seem minor, but they nibble at us, like so many paper cuts, building up and diminishing our lives.
There is a solution, uncovered 70 years ago by Bill Wilson, known around the world as Bill W., a founder of the Alcoholics Anonymous 12-step program of recovery. The solution is a practice called emotional sobriety.
The thing is, Bill W.’s discovery is NOT just for people who are recovering from addiction. It’s for everyone. Bill W., long in recovery from alcoholism sought a solution for his continued chronic bouts of deep depression. He realized that his long-term problems occurred, in part, because his sense of self, wholeness, and well-being was completely dependent on external events. Yes, his personal value was determined by what happened to him, by how others treated him, and by what others thought of him. If people liked Bill, great. If not, he was knocked out of whack.
Bill W. found his solution in the concept of emotional sobriety, essentially the practice of learning not to try to control your emotions but rather to understand and moderate your reactions to them. In 12 Essential Insights for Emotional Sobriety, psychotherapist Dr. Allen Berger writes simply to explain and expand on this concept, combining wisdom from 12-step programs like Alcoholics Anonymous with long-accepted psychological principles. Through heart-rending stories of profound change, careful explanation, and thoughtful exercises, Dr. Berger guides you to a calmer place—and a better life.
Allen Berger, PhD, a popular public speaker and nationally recognized expert on the science of recovery, is the author of 12 Stupid Things That Mess Up Recovery, 12 More Stupid Things That Mess Up Recovery, 12 Smart Things to Do When the Booze and Drugs Are Gone, 12 Hidden Rewards of Making Amends, Love Secrets Revealed: What Happy Couples Know About Having Great Sex, Deep Intimacy, and a Lasting Connection, and How to Get the Most Out of Group Therapy. Dr. Berger co-hosts a weekly podcast focusing on mental and emotional well-being, and moderates a new virtual support group for people interested in practicing emotional sobriety, a pathway to a calmer life and gentler relationships. Dr. Berger is a psychotherapist with a unique gift for blending and explaining the practice of psychology with the wisdom of 12-Step recovery programs. Dr. Berger, a long-time resident of Los Angeles, California, has recently moved to Philadelphia, where he looks forward to reclaiming the snowy winters of his childhood.