Rewire Your Brain for Recovery With Addiction Specialist Erica Spiegelman

Erica Spiegelman

Verywell / Julie Bang

Every Monday on The Verywell Mind Podcast, Editor-in-Chief Amy Morin, LCSW, interviews authors, experts, entrepreneurs, athletes, musicians, and other inspirational people about the strategies that help them think, feel, and do their best in life.

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Meet Erica Spiegelman

Erica describes herself as a recovering alcoholic. When she stopped drinking, she learned that she needed to learn some new skills to aid her recovery.

She chose to become an addiction specialist so she could help other people address their struggles with addiction and dependency. As a certified drug and alcohol counselor, she helps people combat addiction through private sessions, workshops, and online courses.

She’s written several books including, "Rewired: A Bold New Approach to Addiction & Recovery." In it, she explains how people can rewire their brains, change their behavior, and create positive changes in their lives.

Why Erica Spiegelman Is Mentally Strong

Erica learned a lot about recovery from her personal experience. She decided to become an alcohol and drug counselor so she could help other people create positive changes in their lives. 

She talks openly about her personal story as well as the struggles she experienced along the way. The information she shares about things like boundaries and time management can help anyone who is looking to build mental strength.

If you or a loved one are struggling with substance use or addiction, contact the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) National Helpline at 1-800-662-4357 for information on support and treatment facilities in your area.

For more mental health resources, see our National Helpline Database.

What You’ll Hear on the Show

  • What most people misunderstand about addiction
  • The similarities and differences between chemical addictions and behavioral addictions
  • Why recovery isn’t just about not engaging in an addiction
  • Why authentic relationships are such an important part of healing and how to establish them
  • Why individuals with an addiction need to learn how to set healthy boundaries
  • How to work on time management skills and why this is an essential component to recovery
  • How to create an impact list and how this helps
  • Why there are so many different paths to recovery and how to know what can work for you
  • How to create a priority list and why it’s important to know your values
  • How gratitude can rewire your brain
  • What to do if you have a loved one with an addiction

What You’ll Learn About Mental Health and Mental Strength

An addiction isn’t a sign of weakness. But being addicted to something can certainly drain you of the mental strength you need to be your best. 

Mental health and addiction can also be a two-way street. Sometimes people self-medicate with substances or behaviors because they’re experiencing a mental health issue.

At other times, people develop mental health problems after developing an addiction. They may develop problems, like relationship issues or legal problems, that affect their daily lives. Consequently, their mental health may suffer.

Quotes From Erica

Erica Spiegelman

Our brains can rewire. We have different pathways and we create those pathways through habits and ways of thinking and patterns. We can create new patterns. Just like we create bad habits, we can create good habits.

— Erica Spiegelman
  • "One of the biggest misconceptions is that we're stuck in this identity of being an addict [for] the rest of our lives. We do have to be mindful that we have had an experience with addiction and we are susceptible [to] going back down that route, but at the same time, we're all capable of change."
  • "When somebody watches porn, there's a dopamine surge, just like when you're about to do a drug. That's the reason why it feels like I can't stop."
  • "Being in an addiction usually impacts our relationships, impacts our jobs, impacts our physical health, and impacts our mental health."
  • "No matter where you're at on your journey, if you think you're at the worst or at the bottom, you can climb up. There is hope for everybody."

More About the Podcast

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Reviews and ratings are a great way to encourage other people to listen and help them prioritize their mental health too.

Links and Resources

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By Amy Morin, LCSW
Amy Morin, LCSW, is a psychotherapist and international bestselling author. Her books, including "13 Things Mentally Strong People Don't Do," have been translated into more than 40 languages. Her TEDx talk,  "The Secret of Becoming Mentally Strong," is one of the most viewed talks of all time.