Changing Lives Foundation is proud to introduce Holli Kenley, licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and author of the award-winning new book on relapse “Mountain Air: Relapsing and Finding the Way Back . . . One Breath at a Time.” We have recently added it to our “Recommended Reading” page and our review will be coming soon.
Holli has recently taken the time to read and review “Why Don’t They Just Quit?” and we reprint it below with gratitude. Thank you Holli for your eloquent and heartfelt words. We are honored to be associated with an author of your caliber.
Where Was This Book 10 Years Ago?!
~ Review by Holli Kenley, M.A., MFT
I just finished reading “Why Don’t They Quit” by Joe Herzanek, and I have just one question – Where was this book 10 years ago when I needed it?!!
Of all the recovery books I have read on addiction and recovery, there has not been one that equals this one in scope, in sequence of organizational formatting, and in its informative, experiential, and common sense approach. I think it is often a challenge, for an author who is integrating life experiences into his self-help book, to do so with an objectivity and openness to the myriad of complex recovery theories, methods, and approaches. Joe Herzanek does so with clarity, completeness, and concrete strategies for finding one’s way through a maze of pain and with sound practical steps for moving forward.
Although I felt that every section of “Why Don’t They Quit” was extremely important, if I had to choose just one, it would be Part 4—Life in Recovery. This is a partly due to my own professional and personal view about recovering. I love this quote by Joe, “I like to say that life is an odyssey, an extended adventure with peaks and valleys. A person in recovery can use this time to find greater life purpose and be healthy enough to help others fight the battle of addiction. This is a great way to think about life in recovery.” I believe that if we all applied that philosophy to life in general—as we all experience injury as well as joy in everyday living—we would spend less time in the pain-field and more time seeking its purpose and meaning.
I also strongly support the concept of a holistic approach to recovery that Mr. Herzanek shares in Part 4—addressing the body, the mind, and the spirit. At a time when there are so much focus on a singular quick fix solution to our illnesses, diseases, and challenges, I was so impressed by the time and attention that Herzanek gives to this critical piece in recovering. Step by step, he guides the reader through a myriad of practical healing tools and strategies while blending them into a comprehensive and complimentary process.
And although I am quite familiar with the topic of relapse, I was highly impressed with Chapter 30 in which Mr. Herzanek addresses this essential topic—“Relapse: Plan on It”. I appreciate how he normalizes it as a part of recovery, and yet makes clear that there are solid steps to take in minimizing it and preparing for it. With the shame that accompanies relapse, there is no need to pile more layers of guilt and self-blame. Mr. Herzanek once again provides us with clear insight into its causes with common sense tools for moving through it without shaming the reader in the process!
Lastly, In Part 4, I was incredibly moved by the Conclusion where Mr. Herzanek writes: “I have heard story after story from addicts about how unfair life can be. But regardless of the amount of unfairness we have experienced, we must make peace with it—or allow us to destroy us. The choice is ours.” I think so many individuals who have been wronged (by themselves or by others) wait around for someone else to make it right or make it go away. And the longer we wait, the longer we hold ourselves hostage to our circumstances. And, we remain sick. Every fiber in my being agrees with Mr. Herzanek for I have witnessed it many times with former clients and in my personal life. While so many things are out of our control, our wellness it not.
And finally as an overall comment, I really appreciate how Mr. Herzanek not only brought in soulful quotations from famous as well as infamous individuals, but I was moved by how he blended in the short anecdotes from his wife, his mother, his former wife, his daughter, his son, and from himself. For anyone who is living the nightmare of addiction—as a family member or friend of an addict—there is no better way to feel understood and comforted than to know that someone else has traveled in your shoes. And, there is no better way to instill hope.
I often say and write, “Wellness awaits each of us. We choose the time.”
Get a copy of “Why Don’t They Just Quit?”
Your wellness awaits you—it is right here in this book. Grab hold of your recovery and don’t let go!
> “Mountain Air: Relapsing and Finding the Way Back…One Breath at a Time”
> “Breaking Through Betrayal: And Recovering The Peace Within”
> Audio Book CD, MP3 (NEW!)
> Audible Audio Download (LISTEN TO 4 MIN. SAMPLE)
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