Subject: News & Views - December 2019

Join Us for New Year's Eve Around-the-World | DONATE to SMART Before Year-End
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December 2019
Inside This Issue 
Preparing for Holiday Challenges to Addiction Recovery
Creating a Plan to Safely Enjoy the Holidays
Being prepared for holiday events can bolster your sense of confidence during the recovery process and help you begin the process of re-learning to trust yourself.
This article provides ideas on managing difficult situations while in recovery, including planning, motivation, commitment, urge coping, and much more. 

For more support through the holiday season, be sure to check out a meeting near you or online.
We wish you a happy, safe and healthy holiday season!

[You're Invited]
Spend Your New Year's Eve with SMART
Join Us for our Annual SMART Around-the-World Event
The holidays are here! In keeping with our tradition at SMART Recovery, we are offering our annual New Year’s Eve Around-the-World event through SMART Recovery Online (SROL). 

This nonstop meeting with hourly start times, begins at 7:30 a.m. ET on December 31, 2019, and ends at 2:30 a.m. ET on January 1, 2020. Online meetings are laid back and fun with hourly themes selected by that meeting’s host. Past meeting themes include standard recovery topics and discussions, trivia games, stories and poems, “bests” of the year (movies, songs, moments), open chat and discussion, and more.
* Please note that we will be unable to provide meeting verifications for attendance at meetings that happen as part of this event.

All Donations Made Before Dec. 31 
Your special year-end gift equips more individuals, families and communities with the help and resources they need to overcome addiction, enjoy better health, and build meaningful and fulfilling lives together.

All gifts made before December 31 will be matched!

Vital Absorbing Creative Interest (VACI) Exercise
The VACI or Vital Absorbing Creative Interest exercise is a SMART Recovery tool designed to help you think about new, healthful ways to find pleasure, fulfillment or just simple contentment from activities that don’t rely on your substance or addictive behaviors of choice, and ultimately aim to REPLACE them.

Check out this new episode of Tips and Tools for Recovery that Works! to learn more about our VACI tool

Watch the Short Film Authentics on YouTube
The First Film to Feature SMART in Its Storyline 
AUTHENTICS is an amazing dramatic film about addiction and recovery, and the first ever to feature SMART Recovery in its storyline. It centers around a young photographer struggling with addiction who books a job to shoot an engagement party. She meets a man who is no stranger to addiction himself and who gently introduces her to the principles of SMART Recovery. He inspires her to change and, in the process, he changes too.

You can watch this film on the SMART Recovery YouTube channel! Please leave a comment and let us know what you think, and share the film with your friends and community to help us spread the word about SMART to those who need it. 

The film was written and directed by Daniel Stine of Rising Act Films. It made possible by the generous support of the Chris & Debbie Swain Foundation who want our community to know that, "If this film helps to change just one life, we will consider our investment to have been a great success."

Include SMART Recovery in Your 
New Year's Resolutions
Become a SMART Recovery Volunteer!
Are you ready to take the next step in your recovery? Do you want to help end the addiction epidemic and make a difference in your community in 2020? Become a SMART Recovery volunteer!  

The heart of SMART Recovery is an amazing network of volunteers across the globe, teaching and spreading the word about SMART and its self-empowering, science-based messages to those individuals, family and friends, and communities who need it most. We would love to have you on our team. 
You can volunteer in a variety of ways: 
  • Local volunteering: Local SMART Facilitators lead meetings in communities across the U.S. and become advocates and ambassadors for addiction recovery in a variety of ways.
  • Online volunteeringOnline volunteers serve in positions such as online meeting volunteer and message board volunteer. 
If you are, or have been, a volunteer and would like to discuss expanding or changing the ways in which you volunteer, we want to talk to you, too. Please email
We hope to have you on our team in 2020 and beyond! 

Personal Recovery Stories
SMART Helps Entire Families Recover Together
Kathy Lang's Story

Kathy Lang found SMART Recovery during her son’s eight-year addiction to opioids, an addiction that, like those of many others, started when he was prescribed hydrocodone after a major surgery.  
“What I heard from others, professionals included, was that he had to 'hit rock bottom'," said Kathy. "And I believed it." 
While attending an inpatient treatment program, Kathy’s son was required to supplement his treatment by attending daily support group meetings. His treatment center was ahead of the curve, however, in offering a choice of peer support groups. Kathy's son found SMART Recovery to be a game changer and shared the program with Kathy and her husband. Her son has been in long-term recovery for nine years, and Kathy now leads Family & Friends meetings for those whose loved ones are struggling with addiction.
The American Dream:
An Aspiring Football Player vs. An Opioid Addiction
DeSean Duncan's Story

Like so many in sports and other walks of life, the introduction and ongoing accessibility to painkillers after an injury became DeSean Duncan’s ticket to addiction.
After many attempts to recover, a caseworker introduced him to SMART Recovery. “SMART Recovery gave me a way to discover myself – who I was, what I wanted to do, who I wanted to be,” DeSean said.
What DeSean is today is an amazing role model for inner-city youth in the Boston area.

“I look like them. I’ve been through their experiences,” he said. “And I give them the hope that they can do anything they’re passionate about. They can be anything they dream to be. I show them the same support, care, and love that I wished I had gotten when I was younger.”
Subscribe to the SMART Recovery Blog
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About SMART Recovery
Self-Management and Recovery Training
Founded in 1994, SMART Recovery uses science-based techniques that have proven to be effective in helping people recover from addiction problems involving any substance or behavior, including alcohol, drugs, gambling, eating disorders, shopping and internet use.
Each week, thousands of people discuss recovery progress, challenges, and SMART tools at more than 3,000 local meetings, daily online meetings and 24/7 online message boards. 

Participants use SMART to take ownership of their recovery and become empowered through its 4-Point Program®: Building motivation; Coping with urges; Managing thoughts, feelings and behaviors; and Living a balanced life.
For more information, please visit

Contact SMART Recovery at or 440.951.5357.
Follow Us: Facebook  |  Twitter  |  LinkedIn  |  Instagram  |  YouTube  |  Blog 
Your donation to SMART Recovery helps empower millions worldwide
with the tools to abstain from any substance or activity addiction.
Information about alternative giving options: Send email to

SMART Recovery is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.

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