This page lists resources recommended by Secular Overeaters Community members. If you have a resource to share, send a description to email@example.com to include on this page and in our monthly newsletter.
50 Ways to Soothe Yourself Without Food
In this book, Susan Albers, Psy.D., has compiled a list of strategies and tips used by her clients who have found alternative ways to comfort themselves without food. Read more about it in the review by Georgie B on the Book Recommendations page.
Beyond Belief: Agnostic Musings for a 12 Step Life
A book, by Joe C, that has daily reflections for “nonbelievers, freethinkers, and everyone.” Published in 2014 by Rebellion Dogs Publishing.
Dopamine Nation: Finding Balance in the Age of Indulgence
In this book, psychiatrist Anna Lembke explains how dopamine works in the brain, how the pursuit of pleasure leads to pain, and what this all means for people suffering from addictions.
Emotional: How Feelings Shape Our Thinking
This book (published in 2022) by Leonard Mlodinow covers what current science tells us about emotions. It includes a section on the role of emotion in motivation and pleasure that provides insight into addiction.
Geneen Roth Books
In a recent review on secularovereaters.org, CJ describes how books by Geneen Roth helped her achieve abstinence. She writes that the books showed her that giving herself permission to eat anything made it easier to eat healthier. Scroll down on the Book Recommendations page to read CJ’s full review.
The Mentalization Guidebook
This book by Janne Oestergaard Hagelquist is primarily for mental health professionals, but it has examples and exercises that can apply to one’s own life. It takes a deep dive into the concept of mentalization and how it relates to trauma and how to use it to help cope with life’s challenges.
Recovery: Freedom from Our Addictions
This book, by Russell Brand, was published in 2017. The audio version was recommended on the Secular Overeaters private Facebook group. An excerpt and worksheets are available for free on Russell Brand’s website (scroll down the page to the “Recovery” section).
Trauma and the 12 Steps: An Inclusive Guide to Enhancing Recovery
This book (2020), by Jamie Marich, PhD, provides a trauma-informed approach to working the Twelve Steps. There is also a daily reader and a workbook. Recommended on the Secular Overeaters Facebook group.
Turning Off The Tap: Overcoming The Real Reasons We Overeat
This book, by Sara Best, is about how the brain drives habits like emotional eating and overeating, and provides practical tools to help you reprogram and rewire those patterns. Recommended on the Secular Overeaters Facebook group.
Waiting: A Nonbeliever’s Higher Power
In this book, Marya Hornbacher tells the story of her recovery from alcoholism and provides a framework for exploring the human spirit that is not based on a belief in God.
Greater Good is UC Berkeley’s center for positive psychology. They email articles with a variety of tips for dealing with life based on current research, at no charge. – Recommended by Kevin https://www.greatergood.berkeley.edu/
This document was created to support the Freethinker Alternative Twelve Step Discussion Meeting, which meets on the third Sunday of the month (see our calendar
). But even if you don’t attend those meetings, you are likely to find this collection and interpretations of alternative versions of each Step interesting and useful.
A technical article on the science of food addiction.
A psychiatrist’s explanation of how addictions form in the brain.
This Lifeline article, from 2017, is by an OA member who has maintained a 95-pound weight loss for 20 years. They wrote this for atheists and agnostics who feel they don’t belong in OA.
A Lifeline article about a practical idea to help recovery—changing one’s world view from a “me” focus to a “we” focus.
A Lifeline article about the life we can find with recovery.
A Lifeline article about a woman realizing what amends to oneself means.
A Lifeline article about the importance of using the steps regularly, even when things are going well.
In this episode, Jenne M. and Jim D. talk about their struggles with food addiction, the difficulty they experienced as atheists in OA, their experiences starting secular OA meetings, and the secularovereaters.org website.
The purpose of this podcast is to increase awareness of food addiction as a disease and abstinence as the solution. Find it at the link or on your favorite podcast app.
This episode from October 1, 2021, features the medical director for Stanford Addiction Medicine and author of Dopamine Nation. She discusses compulsive and addictive behaviors related to food and strategies for overcoming them.
In this episode from April 26, 2022, Suzanne Colon, co-founder of the Bozeman Dharma Center, describes the relationship between the Buddhist path and recovery from addiction and how meditation and self-compassion practices can help.
No God OA: An Atheist’s Journey in Secular Overeaters Anonymous [Podcast]
In this engaging podcast, which started in January 2022, the podcaster shares his journey using a secular OA approach, including his experiences with various aspects of the program (e.g., tools, Steps), his ups and downs, and literature he’s found helpful. Find it in your regular podcast app!
Many of us aren’t always sure about what we are feeling. This handy wheel can help pinpoint exactly what’s going on (and that we’re probably not hungry). It’s useful for step work like Steps 4 or 10. Print a copy and keep it in your journal!
Mom [TV Comedy]
This CBS TV show, which ran from 2013 to 2021, focuses on women in recovery (available on a variety of streaming services).
This free self-guided course was recommended on the Secular Overeaters Facebook group. Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction is a blend of meditation, body awareness, and mindful movement.