Our project is on the use of mindfulness and meditation in the recovery process of addiction. Mindfulness is a very valuable tool in the treatment of addiction. It encourages those who struggle with letting go of their unhealthy attachments to learn to be in the present moment. Mindfulness allows people to deal with their emotions in a relaxed state instead of seeking out an escape mechanism to numb their inner feelings. One of our team members unfortunately has witnessed the effects of addiction on her family. Her father, a Vietnam veteran who has PTSD, was an alcoholic during my childhood, and struggled with controlling his bursts of anger. Her brother, was bullied in school because of his ADHD, and was the target of his dad’s impatience and anger growing up. He used drugs as a way to escape his anger, and sadness. She has seen how the 12 steps of recovery from AA, along with practicing mindfulness and meditation has helped them learn how to let go of their negative emotions and reach a peaceful state of mind.
What we propose to do is interview local leaders who are in the mindful recovery movement. There is Kevin Griffin, who is a Buddhist author, teacher, and innovator in the field of addiction treatment and he teaches locally, at YogaKula in Berkeley. Another meditation group that would be interesting to interview is Urban Dharma, located in San Francisco and inspired by the book Dharma Punx, written by Noah Levine. Noah Levine is a Buddhist teacher, author and counselor. He teaches meditation classes, workshops and retreats nationally as well as leading groups in juvenile halls and prisons. Also, to research the latest neuroscience behind the effectiveness of mindfulness in recovery we could interview Rich Hanson, a neuropsychologist in the bay area. We’ll also interview people who are actively practicing mindfulness in their own recovery and ask them about its effectiveness in helping them maintain sobriety.
Our key audience are people who are curious about practicing mindfulness, or want to share mindfulness with someone they think could benefit from it. It can be useful for not just those who are in the process of recovering from addiction but also for people who want to reduce stress, anxiety, and relax. Mindfulness meditation can even be great for students, it can help them be more focused, calm, and able to retain information better for their studies.