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Michael Palma

Michael Palma is a drug addict in recovery who is passionate about recovery and recently has taken to writing about his own experience, strength, and hope and hopes to share this with as many people in recovery as he can. He has been a professional jazz pianist for over 20 years. He has performed with Wynton Marsalis, Jimmy Cobb (drummer for Miles Davis), Daniel Platzman (drummer for Imagine Dragons), Robert “Sput” Seawright (drummer for Snoop Dogg and Snarky Puppy), Greg Osby, and Terri Lynn Carrington to name a few.

D8 — A Comprehensive Guide to Delta-8-THC

D8, also known as Delta-8-THC, is a derivative of the hemp plant that has similar effects to the active ingredient in marijuana — THC. And yes, in case you were wondering, D8 will get you high if you take enough of it. A lot of D8 today is synthesized from CBD. It didn’t take long for CBD to take off. It seemed as if almost overnight,… 

Emotional Reasoning: A Cognitive Distortion

As we continue our series on cognitive distortions, let’s take a look at one that can cause major problems: emotional reasoning. You’ve heard the term “trust your gut.” Well, this isn’t a one size fits all term. Life is a little more complicated to navigate than this saying portrays it to be. Emotional reasoning can alter a person’s perception negatively, leading them to make poor… 

Mental Filtering | A Cognitive Distortion

Mental filtering is thinking in a distorted way over any considerable amount of time, which can lead to anxiety, depression, and even drug addiction. People struggling with addiction usually are dealing with some sort of mental illness. Whether it’s bipolar disorder, anxiety disorder, or major depressive disorder (to name a few), those of us suffering from co-occurring disorders have a lot to overcome if we… 

Self-Sabotage | Everything You Need to Know

Self-sabotage and addiction is an interesting subject. You’d think all of us would be our own greatest advocate, only taking action to better ourselves and achieve things in our lives. However, more often than not, we are our own worst enemies and engage in self-sabotaging behavior. We get in our own way, and many times, we aren’t even aware of it. The first step is… 

Discounting the Positive | A Corroding Cognitive Distortion

Discounting the positive is a cognitive distortion where you never give credit to yourself for positive things and see yourself as only negative. Essentially, you’re taking positive experiences and either making them negative or saying they “don’t count” for some reason that usually has no basis in reality. “Cognitive distortion” is a term used for beliefs (that are not based on the truth) that lead… 

Personalization | A Cognitive Distortion That Makes Addiction Worse

This is the 2nd article in our cognitive distortion series, which will address the cognitive distortion personalization as it pertains to addiction. (If you haven’t yet, check out the first article on overgeneralization.) Probably 90% of addicts have a negative internal dialogue. Chances are that if you’re reading this, you or someone you know is an addict (I use the word addict as a term… 

Overgeneralization | A Cognitive Distortion That Can Kill

Overgeneralization is a type of thinking that emerged from a single event; this thinking is then applied to all similar events, especially ones in the future. Perhaps you had to give a big speech at your job or college graduation. Both you and the people around may think that you gave an absolutely horrendous speech. Big deal, right? In this example, overgeneralization might look like,… 

Addiction and Codependency | A Recipe for Disaster

Addiction and codependency go hand in hand. We’ve all heard of codependency. These days, like narcissism, codependency is a term many people throw around without knowing what it means exactly. This condition is somewhat of a mental and emotional disorder where a person (who lacks a feeling of wholeness) depends on other people around them to meet their physical and emotional (or spiritual) needs. Are… 

Purple Drank | Everything You Need to Know About Lean

You may have heard “purple drank” or “lean” referenced in music, primarily by rappers. These are street names given to the mixture of cough syrup that contains both promethazine and codeine along with a carbonated beverage such as Sprite. From what I’ve seen, the syrup is always dark purple. “Candy” seems innocent enough as it’s somewhat humorously referred to in many songs, but it’s a… 

What to Do After a Relapse

Although it’s not a requirement for a drug addict in recovery, relapse often happens and is a part of many recovery journeys. Relapse is not a single event; it’s an insidious process that eventually leads to an addict taking that first drink or drug. So, what often leads up to a relapse? Things start to slip in an addict’s program: meeting attendance dwindles, nightly inventories…