“I never teach my pupils; I only attempt to provide the conditions in which they can learn.” — Albert Einstein
One of the reasons addictions counselors and treatment providers fail so miserably is simple, they “TELL” people what to do and push them into the box that they have outlined. No where under any conditions is this more of a mistake than with alcoholics or addicts. I am sure there are quite a few reasons a treatment provider including therapists and counselors would lean towards this “modus operandi”. Newly sober counselors looking to change the world, get overly controlling, agencies with limited time to get results attempt to force their recovery beliefs on their clients to name a few.
The literature points to the ineffectiveness of this practice. Mutual support and the Twelve Step process founded by the AA program leans towards creating an atmosphere or a culture of “this is what we have done and you can too if you choose to.” The “Promises” are read at nearly every meeting in the world every day for a reason. They offer hope for the future of the addict.
The message is simple, “we know what you are feeling, we felt the same way, here is what we have found!” Anything other than that seems to fall on deaf ears! Sure you may get some folks to comply and they do but in my experience the overly compliant ones are the highest at risk for relapse.
So the process is simple, not easy, just simple. I am hurting, alcohol or drugs are often if not always at the core, I need help… Help comes via “yes I understand, I have been there, here is what I and millions more have done…” Then watch the magic as the journey begins! Life is good!
Go, Go, Go…