September 29, 2016

Recovery Speaking Topics


Gloria Englund offers presentations and workshops on a wide range of recovery topics that can be delivered in a variety of settings and tailored to a variety of audiences.

One Family’s Journey to Recovery

“One Family’s Journey to Recovery” are Gloria’s personal reflections from her book, Living in the Wake of Addiction: Lessons for Courageous Caregiving. This presentation will explore how the ignorance, stigma and shame that often accompanies substance use disorders (SUDs) can be lessened for families and loved ones through education, self-care, healthy boundaries and support for all. Ideas that will be discussed:

  • Substance use disorders, like mental health disorders, are a brain illness.
  • What encourages and helps prevent relapse?
  • How does the stigma of SUDs play out in family systems?
  • How does the SUD of one sibling impact other siblings?
  • Understand how Medication-Assisted Treatment fits into treatment options.
  • Learn about the many options for peer recovery support.
  • Understand the hope for change.

Resilience as a Path to Recovery

What are the characteristics of a resilient life? How do we discover them and keep them part of our daily experience of recovery? Gloria Englund shares what self-care practices can help you discover and preserve the factors of a resilient life: balance, meaningful connections and joy.


A Different Kind of Grief©

This presentation addresses the grief process specific to being in a relationship with a loved one who has died from to addiction. Death from substance use disorder (SUD) is a “disenfranchised grief” due to the stigma that accompanies the disease of addiction. The presentation demonstrates how healing begins with education, self-care practices, and support from those with similar experience.


Addiction: Myths and Misconceptions

This presentation addresses the many myths and misconceptions that accompany addiction and addiction recovery such as the misconception that addiction is due to a lack of will power, that long-term recovery can’t happen especially for opioid addicts, and that providing treatment is more costly that crisis intervention. Learn how these myths and many others create stigma for those in recovery and their loved ones and what to do about it.


How do We Love the Difficult People in Our Life?

This presentation guides the audience through the murky waters of challenging relationships. Gloria Englund explores how to maintain relationships with difficult people and minimize painful consequences by looking at the role of judgment, gratitude, and shifts in perspective.


Are You Right Sized?

Becoming “right sized” is having the tools necessary for an on-going assessment of our own recovery. Too often people consider themselves either more important or less worthy than others. Both of these attitudes can challenge one’s personal recovery. This presentation offers techniques for keeping us right-sized by making accurate self-assessments as we explore the role that meditation, trust, honesty, humility, grace, and love play in this process.


Turn Your Words To Gold

This presentation looks at the role of edification in recovery and wellness. How does the practice of encouraging and supporting others help you increase your own recovery capital? Learn the lingo of edification and watch your recovery change and grow.


Develop Your Inner Leader

This leadership development presentation offers techniques for developing an authentic positive attitude that can impact others. We’ll look at the differences between being internally focused and externally focused and explore how an “inner leader” supports growth in the recovery community as well as in ourselves.


Create the Life You Want – Dream Workshop

This presentation explores how to discover your values and the relationship between values and your personal in recovery. You will learn how to create and use tools like a personal vision statement and dream boards to identify and realize your dreams and goals.


Are You 100% Committed?

This presentation describes commitment as persistence in action; easily said but rarely done. We will look at how the power of commitment affects your recovery as well as why should commitment be your most valued asset. Learn how to become 100% committed to your goals and values and watch your life change.


  • – Eileen C.

    “When my dog-eared, coffee stained copy of this book is not ‘on loan’ to a friend who needs its wisdom, it lives on my bedside table as a frequent reference and to give me hope.”

  • – Mel (Mary Ellen) Scholl, LADC,

    Certified Empowerment Coach, and founder and former owner of Women’s Pathways to Health, LLC

    Sobering and ruthlessly realistic, this book plumbs the depth of the destruction that addicts wreak on themselves, their loved ones, and our society. Englund is courageous, clearly taking on the myths of addiction and recovery—such as the idea addiction is a moral failing, rather than a chronic brain disorder. She is heartbreakingly generous in sharing truthful, compelling stories of her own beloved and torturous mother-child relationship in order to eradicate stigma and help others. Most importantly, this book offers hope. She writes: “23.5 million people in the U.S. are in long-term recovery.  With the right kind of support, recovery from substance use disorder can be achieved for a lifetime.”  Barely a year goes by that I don’t officiate at a funeral of someone who died from addiction. Our hearts are breaking. Englund aims to change this.

  • Jim Ramsted

    Member of Congress (1991-2009)

    “Living in the Wake of Addiction" is a readable and practical contribution to the recovering community that makes a compelling argument to treat diseases of the brain the same as diseases of the body.

    Gloria Englund’s book also exposes the myths and misconceptions of addiction, treatment and recovery. She knows firsthand that recovery can be achieved for a lifetime.

    I highly recommend this insightful guidebook for all those good people affected by this disease and thank my Higher Power for Gloria Englund —a Fellow Traveler on the road to recovery.

  • – Susan Stemme

    Licensed Drug and Alcohol Counselor

    Living in the Wake of Addiction provides a rare and powerful presentation of addiction from the view of the addict, his family and caregivers. Gloria Englund tactfully and loving raises the issues and dilemmas that we as professional, families, and society need to understand so we can begin to address the epidemic of addiction in our society.

  • – Karla

    former Courageous Caregivers member

    “After reading Living in the Wake of Addiction I immediately purchased two dozen copies for family members and friends. The book was a wonderful resource for me to utilize when explaining my son’s addiction and my recovery from it also.”

  • – Don Shelby

    Veteran journalist

    The path to recovery is lighted by the glow coming from the stories of others who have walked our lonely, painful journey, and those who have found a way home to peace and happiness. We thought no one could understand our hopelessness.  Living in the Wake of Addiction is a story and journey to discovery and a gift for all who suffer.

  • – Carol Falkowski

    CEO, Drug Abuse Dialogues

    This book presents an up-to-date overview of the opioid crisis gripping this country. The reader is left with a broadened understanding of the nature and scope of opioid addiction, as well as an appreciation of the complex challenges of addressing it on both a personal and societal level. The book also includes the poignant personal reflections of a parent who has lost a child to addiction.

  • –  Chris Peterson

    Mother of a daughter in recovery

    Living in the Wake of Addiction is a story of courage, love, and the growing wisdom Gloria Englund and her family experienced during her son’s progressive disease of addiction. She narrates the path of her son's drug use, as well as her deepening insights into addiction and addiction treatment options. I was inspired by this honest account of the daily challenges of living with addiction.  Gloria shares with us the gift of awareness and the grace of love.

  • – Cathy Brown

    Co-founder and facilitator, Mayflower Church Addiction Recovery Support Ministry

    Gloria Englund says, “Love brings hope, and hope fosters recovery.” It’s a simple formula—not easy, but simple. Gloria shares a series of lessons she learned through living with her son’s struggle to overcome his addiction. She points out the subtleties of language that play a role in stigmatizing addiction, and gives us a practical guide to help us see through the fog and stay in relationship with loved ones who have addiction disorders. Living in the Wake of Addiction: Lessons for Courageous Caregiving is chock full of practical wisdom.

  • – Peggy Thompson, MDiv, MFA

    Board Certified Chaplain

    Gloria presents powerful, profound and hard-earned knowledge. She deeply understands addiction, not only through her extensive research, but because she has experienced it with her own heart through her son’s addiction and untimely death. This book is a gripping cry for a societal change, as well as compassion and healing for not only those who are addicted, but for all other codependent family members and friends. Living in the Wake of Addiction is the best book I have read on addiction and recovery as presented from a parent’s point of view.

  • – William C. Moyers

    Author of Broken: My Story of Addiction and Redemption

    Gloria Englund turns her family's personal tragedy into a very public lesson of hope, help, and healing for anyone who knows firsthand the struggle of addiction. Her perseverance will inspire others to never give up the fight to overcome this cunning, baffling, and powerful illness. She proves that from the adversity of loss comes the opportunity to advocate for others to recover their own lives in the wake of addiction's terrible toll.

  • – Betsy H.

    “When I finished reading Living in the Wake of Addiction I asked Gloria if I could have several copies of the book to have on hand to sell to those who I knew could benefit from these truthful and powerful words.”

  • – Linda Peterson

    "Living in the Wake of Addiction helped me understand my husband's alcoholism as a disease that resulted in his death due to cirrhosis. Gloria's wrenching and honest story provides insight and understanding of how addiction affects our families and society. She moves beyond the personal to a larger view of the effects of addiction and ways we can start to change treatment, attitudes and public policy towards addiction.”

  • – Daniel F. Pfarr

    Chief Executive Officer, 180 Degrees

    As a parent and as a community leader who has worked with at-risk kids for over twenty years, I am painfully aware of how vulnerable kids are to addiction. I am very impressed with Gloria Englund’s courage as a mother to share the painful journey of her son’s addiction and overdose. Gloria tells this moving story with a great deal of self-reflection and self-knowledge. I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to understand the struggles of addiction, and to find a way to deal with the challenges in a helpful and healing manner.

     

  • – Karen Casey

    “Living in the Wake of Addiction: Lessons for Courageous Caregiving is a story of courage and bravery that Gloria and her family walked through together. Aaron was extremely brave in spite of being caught in the awful web of addiction. Unfortunately, there are still mothers of young men and women who are also caught in the web. Far too many of them die like Aaron did. And yet, this book is a way-shower to other parents that anything can be survived with hope and the right tools for recovery.

  • – Nancy E.

    “Living in the Wake of Addiction: Lessons for Courageous Caregiving is a book I hold close to my heart and recommend strongly. For me, the mother of a son who has struggled with an opioid addiction, this handbook/story/informative resource provided comfort, insight and new way to look at the substance user’s struggle. It is open- hearted, kind, filled with love and yes, sadness. But even through Gloria's personal tale, she offers hope and invaluable details about choice and how to move forward with our loved one on this journey. Thank you, Gloria!”

  • –Judy Ensor Lee

    Fellow advocate

    In this book, Gloria Englund shares powerful insights into how addiction affects everyone in the family, and also provides a picture of what movement toward health looks like. Living in the Wake of Addiction shares important statistics about the depth of addiction, as well as solid information about new research and ways of thinking about addiction and recovery. It illustrates a significant shift and broadening of the often-rigid interpretations coming from some of the more widely used recovery models. If my son were still alive, I would implore him to read this book.

  • – Sally Larson

    "I wish I had read Gloria's book when my daughter was actively using drugs. But, I am glad I found it now. As a mom trying to find her way in the world of recovery and codependency, her statistics, stories and most of all, hard-won nuggets of wisdom are applicable to everyone dealing with any difficult situations.  She is a one-stop shop for all the definitions and resources you will need to become a Courageous Caregiver."

  • – Gail Goeller

    Author of the award-winning Coming of Age with Aging Parents: The Bungles, Battles, and Blessings

    With unadulterated courage, hard-earned wisdom, and a mother’s compassion, Englund seeds her powerful story of family, drug addiction, and trending research into our culture’s “deeper consciousness.” Validating the phrase “breakdown-breakthrough,” she births renewable hope, self-awareness, and ultimate resolution, trusting that each experience will reveal the next step of one’s journey. Englund’s Lessons and information on stigmas and medical breakthroughs are groundbreaking and transferrable when laid next to other hefty challenges in our culture.

  • – Judy Rummler

    Living in the Wake of Addiction offers compassionate guidance for people dealing with addiction. The practical wisdom Gloria Englund offers through the Lessons helps caregivers learn how to give caring support for recovery while maintaining healthy boundaries. I wish I had known these things five years ago. Our work to end the overdose epidemic is best reflected in my favorite Lesson: “Saving the lives of those who are affected by this disease will only happen when the general public gets angry enough to demand that the people who suffer from these disorders deserve the same medical treatment and compassion as does anyone suffering from a chronic illness.”

  • – Maureen R. McNeal, M.A., L.I.C.S.W., L.M.F.T.

    Living in the Wake of Addiction is a page-turner that I could hardly put down. Gloria has written a rich story told with humility and truth about what life is like—the good and the bad—when caregivers have a loved one who is ill with the disease of addiction. The book is packed with truth about how this disease affects the caregiver as well as the person who is ill. It offers hope and wisdom about how to respond and focus on your own self-care as you live life with your addicted loved one. As a Marriage and Family Therapist, with over 25 years experience, I recommend this book to anyone struggling on the difficult and painful path towards wholeness while living in the wake of addiction.

  • – Catherine Ashton

    Prison Meditation Teacher, training in Compassion and the issues of Aging, Illness and Dying

    As an addict/alcoholic in long-term recovery, I resonate with the message of Living in Wake of Addiction.  The Lessons reflect the pain, despair, confusion, loss, and the hard, hard work that must persevere when dealing with the pervasive disease of addiction. Gloria’s and her family's personal story reflect a deep process of spiritual and emotional recovery that brings us to our humanness. This humanness is what makes this story true for so many caregivers and their loved ones. Gloria’s education and knowledge of the latest support and treatments available for this important journey make this book a valuable resource for all living today in the wake of addiction.

  • – Honesty Liller

    Living in the Wake of Addiction: Lessons for Courageous Caregiving, was completely heartfelt and amazing!  Being a person in recovery myself, it opened my eyes to see what my addiction did to those around me.  Gloria is a wonderful advocate for all of us in recovery, our families, and to the community as a whole!  Thank you for sharing your life with us.

  • – Rose McKinney aka Midwestern Mama

    “Gloria’s book, Living in the Wake of Addiction has now become one of the resources I recommend to parents and licensed professionals. I wish I had read it during my son’s active addiction because it provides new insight for me into substance use disorders and offers tangible ways to help your loved one while helping yourself. In addition, it thoroughly explains why medication-assisted treatment (MAT) is vital for people with an opioid-use disorder.”

  • – Dr. Elaine Millam, La Quinta, CA

    Living in the Wake of Addiction narrates not only the trauma that the addict deals with, but the obstacles both families and individuals face. Gloria lays out a compelling strategy for what all of us can do to make a difference with addiction, saving lives and learning how to educate the world at large so that positive change can be made!”

  • ~Linda L. Miller M.A., L.P.

    “Living in the Wake of Addiction helps the readers understand how the stigma and negative judgements towards those with substance use disorders actually prevent them from seeking help for the problem. Gloria’s explanation of addiction as a ‘brain disease ‘is helpful in understanding how the illness impacts a person's ability to think rationally in spite of the harmful consequences of their behaviors.  She also provides practical coping strategies for codependents as well as a list of professional and self-help resources.”

  • – Jean Kennedy

    Retired Corporate Director, Volunteer, Better Futures Minnesota

    “Even though I have not been personally impacted by addiction, I know this powerful story will have an impact on you as it did on me. You will now understand, as I do, the deep emotional toll this disease places on those struggling with addiction and on those who love them….and the importance of strong community support and the necessary funding for rehabilitation services.”

  • – Rev. Sarah Campbell

    Team Lead Minister, Mayflower UCC, Minneapolis, MN

    Sobering and ruthlessly realistic, this book plumbs the depth of the destruction that addicts wreak on themselves, their loved ones, and our society. Englund is courageous, clearly taking on the myths of addiction and recovery—such as the idea addiction is a moral failing, rather than a chronic brain disorder. She is heartbreakingly generous in sharing truthful, compelling stories of her own beloved and torturous mother-child relationship in order to eradicate stigma and help others. Most importantly, this book offers hope. She writes: “23.5 million people in the U.S. are in long-term recovery.  With the right kind of support, recovery from substance use disorder can be achieved for a lifetime.”  Barely a year goes by that I don’t officiate at a funeral of someone who died from addiction. Our hearts are breaking. Englund aims to change this.

  • – Greg Williams

    Filmmaker, The Anonymous People

    Gloria Englund is one of countless thousands of mothers whose child has died from addiction. She has risen up out of the anonymity of grief, and into the light of hope, offering the Lessons she has learned and now shares with caregivers who struggle with their loved one’s addiction. Her book describes, in the most personal way, the very reason for the much-needed advocacy movement that is finally underway. Gloria’s story and her son's story are all our stories. But rather than letting the shame and stigma that so often accompany the disease of addiction silence her, she's telling her truth with a commonality that is relatable for all caregivers. Living in the Wake of Addiction reveals advocacy at its best. There is no greater demonstration of hope than what Gloria offers through this book.

  • – Jim

    Fellow advocate

    While Gloria Englund tells her story, she unfolds the progressive nature of addiction from a parental point of view, while also giving the addict a voice. I can identify with the life history here, and I recognize how the many personality traits can manifest themselves into this puzzling disease. Gloria shares her hindsights in a way that humbles the caregiver, and also humanizes the pain and shame that the addict faces. Thank you for helping me to accept humility as a coping skill, which helps me to be more supportive. I hope that writing this book has brought some healing into your life—and know that you have made a sincere tribute to the life of your son.

  • – John W. Olsen

    Grateful caregiver

    Living in the Wake of Addiction is a powerful account of a mother’s journey through her son’s addiction. His death ultimately brought her to an understanding of the disease of addiction, and how it played out in her recovery from codependency. Written with a mother’s love, sensitivity and personal searching, this book can be a vital tool to others in understanding and coping with this insidious disease. I have experienced the tragedies of alcohol addiction throughout my life. Gloria Englund’s story has enlightened and informed me about how to improve my relationships—and the love I have for those trapped in addiction.

  • – Jill Petsel

    Gloria Englund’s book, Living in the Wake of Addiction, is about her courageous, personal evolution as a parent whose child is struggling with addiction. She beautifully describes how her approach to her son, Aaron, and their relationship shifted, once she learned and accepted more about his addiction as an illness. The personal, yet practical wisdom shared through her Lessons learned makes it clear this is more than a story about Aaron’s addiction and death.  This book is a must-read for anyone who has a loved one dealing with addiction. It is a gift from Gloria’s heart and Aaron’s soul.