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12 Smart Things to Do When the Booze and Drugs Are Gone: Choosing Emotional Sobriety through Self-Awareness and Right Action Paperback – July 12, 2010


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Frequently Bought Together

12 Smart Things to Do When the Booze and Drugs Are Gone: Choosing Emotional Sobriety through Self-Awareness and Right Action + 12 Stupid Things That Mess Up Recovery: Avoiding Relapse through Self-Awareness and Right Action + Donít Let the Bastards Grind You Down: 50 Things Every Alcoholic and Addict in Early Recovery Should Know, or How to Stay Clean and Sober, Recovery from Addiction and Substance Abuse
Price for all three: $36.95

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Hazelden; 1 edition (July 12, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 159285821X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1592858217
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 5.1 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (44 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #23,656 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Berger, Allen. 12 Smart Things To Do When the Booze and Drugs Are Gone: Choosing Emotional Sobriety Through Self-Awareness and Right Action. Hazelden. Sept. 2010. c.200p. bibliog. ISBN 9781592858217. pap. $14.95.

McAlister, Brian. Full Recovery: Creating a Personal Action Plan for Life Beyond Sobriety. 2d ed. MacSimum. Sept. 2010. c.240p. ISBN 9780982394816. $22.95. SELF-HELP

These two titles cover similar territory—how to free oneself from emotional bondage and to achieve abundant living after putting the plug in the jug. Psychologist Berger (12 Stupid Things That Mess Up Recovery) draws on the studies from psychological research and the lessons of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) founder Bill W. to offer 12 smart things to do to achieve self-mastery—the maintaining of a healthy relationship with oneself. Each chapter offers readings and instructions on such goals as pressuring oneself instead of others to change, appreciating what is, and not taking things personally. Essentially, Berger helps the reader to fill the hole once filled by addiction in a manner comfortable to those familiar with AA material. Motivational speaker and recovering alcoholic McAlister incorporates a strong reliance on God for assistance in achieving long-term success. He uses personal examples and case studies of both success and failure to help the reader explore old maladaptive habits/beliefs, find motivational activities, and develop a game plan that overcomes hurdles. He provides exercises and practical applications for career and relationship goals. All those in recovery or even actively drinking can get help from either book, but practicing Christians may prefer Full Recovery.

(Brian McAlister Library Journal)

About the Author

Allen Berger, Ph.D., is a practicing psychologist and the author of the popular book, 12 Stupid Things that Mess Up Recovery: Avoiding Relapse through Self-Awareness and Right Action. For more than thirty years, he has been on his own personal journey in recovery while helping others discover a new way of life free from addiction and its insanity.

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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I highly recommend this book to anyone in recovery.
MLB
I have read this book cover to cover and have found it very useful and informative.
Matthew E.
This book has been helpful to my life and changed my way of thinking!!
Christine Crow

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 23 people found the following review helpful By H. Francisco on February 28, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have been in recovery for 28 years and am very familiar with Bill Wilson's letter on Emotional Sobriety. I have been reading and studying this piece of writing in an attempt to have my deeper rooted character defects "cast out" as the 12-step process had done with my alcoholism in my early sobriety. It wasn't until I read Dr. Berger's book that not only was I able to identify more fully with Bill's dilemma (one unhealthily dependent person to another unhealthily dependent person), but was provided with awareness and concrete direction as to what I could do about it! Truth is, I sat down to read a few chapters and had a powerful awakening to my problem and its solution... I could not put this book down until I was finished. Dr. Berger spoke to my dis-ease and my emotional recovery. I highly recommend this book for anyone struggling for lasting inner peace.
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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful By pher on November 22, 2010
Format: Paperback
I am not one to write reviews, but I felt compelled to do so here. Dr. Berger has hit the nail right on the head with this book!!! I have just celebrated 1 year of sobriety, and have begun incorporating numerous aspects of his book into my life--understanding who I am and what is important to me. I have given this book as a gift to a countless number of friends and family both in 12 step recovery and not. In my opinion, 12 Smart Things holds gifts that can benefit ANYONE'S emotional sobriety. Thanks Dr. Berger!!!!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Randi Gunther, Ph.D. on July 16, 2011
Format: Paperback
In the plethora of books written about addiction, Dr. Berger's stands out in it's beautiful simplicity and wonderful practicality. Underlying all addictive behaviors are the drivers that keep them going. Those are submerged as the victims of these diseases struggle to find their way out of darkness. As addicts are able to separate out from their bio-chemical entrapments, those drivers re-emerge and become the most important issues to deal with. Dr. Berger not only points them out, but gives wise and practical counsel as to heal them so that addictive pulls will have less magnetic attraction in the future. I have not only bought multiple copies of this book for my own patients but would recommend it to any other therapists who face the frustrations of watching treasured patients resuccumb to their disease. I wish there were more books of this kind to help people in all of their emotional battles.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Clear, concise, simple guidelines that are easy to remember and incorporate into everyday routines. This is Berger's second book and I love this book as much as the first one. He breaks down how to achieve emotional sobriety into short and easy points to use everyday.
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21 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Judith S. Mishkin on August 8, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This self-help book was engaging and packed with very useful wisdom for the audience for which it is intended. My copy is heavily highlighted and my little sticky notes makes the pages look like a fringed carpet. Dr. Berger uses his AA background and the 12 steps to help the reader learn about emotional sobriety. His first chapter, Smart Thing 1: Know yourself--and How to Stay Centered sets the stage for a person's personal growth. He "help(s) us build up the courage and motivation to change the things we can. "
In the book, Dr. Berger uses quotations and ideas from the great pioneers of family therapy, such as Victor Frankl and Abraham Maslow. Here are some examples and how Dr. Berger uses the material. From the ideas of Augustus Napier, PhD. and Carl Whitaker MD (page 139), Dr. Berger says "This means we choose a partner...to take the next step in our personal development." He quotes Virginia Satir (page 156), "The problem is not the problem. The problem is coping (1972). From Dr. Nathaniel Branden's sign "No one is coming", Dr. Berger says, and I paraphrase: "No one is coming to rescue (us) from their fate. It is up to (us)." From a personal communication with Dr. Kempler, he quotes on page 52, "In order to get more personal, you have to stop taking the other person's behavior personally." (1982)
From "A psychological technique called neurolinguistic programming," (page 116), Dr. Berger talks about "1. Change our focus, 2. Change our language (What we say to ourselves) and 3, Change our physiology (Try smiling)."
Dr. Berger has only one exercise, "The Emotional Sobriety Inventory Form," which he asks the reader to fill out near the beginning of the book and again at the end. It is the only exercise I have ever done since I left school! The book is definitely worth reading.
Judith Mishkin, Marriage and Family Counselor, retired.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By SatchimosMom on January 2, 2011
Format: Paperback
I purchased this book for a family member; however, I first read the book myself. Flip open the cover and you'll have a hard time putting it down! Resist the urge to read through in one sitting. Instead, take the time to contemplate each chapter.

This book is about "emotional sobriety" (emotional maturity). Although I've never been addicted to a mind-altering substance, I found the information contained therein invaluable as, I suspect, the whole of mankind would benefit from some assistance with their emotional maturity. I am, therefore, ordering multiple copies for many more of my loved ones!
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By docdawn on April 23, 2011
Format: Paperback
Dr. Berger has done it again! 12 Smart Things is an easy to understand discussion of emotional sobriety. This little book is packed with instructions on how to grow beyond simple abstinence from alcohol and other drugs and includes A.A. founder Bill Wilson's letter from 1958 to a depressed friend. Bill's insights on his own emotionally and spiritually stunted growth set the stage for Dr. Berger's up to date information on the topic. With examples from his own clients and life, Dr. Berger illustrates this often neglected part of recovery. As an M.D. Addictionist, I will recommend it to all of my patients! Thank you, Dr. Berger!
Mission Possible: A Missionary Doctor's Journey Of Healing
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