How to Address The Root Cause Of Any Addiction

Most of us could agree that people are more prone to developing an addiction of any kind when they're down, isolated, alone, or when things are not going great.

So these situations can look like this:

  • experiencing a significant loss in life
  • being a new or overwhelmed mom
  • being stuck in a bad relationship or job

What do we often do when we don't feel great about our situation?
 We look for something to make us feel better. When you're in those situations, like I just described, feeling better isn't easy, and the usual stuff often doesn't work. But there is one quick, reliable, easy way to feel better fast: to drink, use drugs or engage in other addictive behavior.

Why is that? It's because those addictive things, whether they're substances or behaviors, typically trigger—the neurochemical dopamine. Most of us have heard about dopamine before; we all know it is a reward chemical. The problem with dopamine is that it makes us go after something that our brain thinks is...

Continue Reading...

The Ugly Truth Behind The Addiction Treatment Industry

After working in addiction and recovery treatment for almost 20 years, there are some not-so-pretty truths about the behind-the-scenes of the addiction treatment industry.
I want to help you understand this to be better equipped to pick the right help for you or a loved one.

The Diverse Treatment Options
One of the first things I want you to know is that there are different types of addiction treatment, from counseling to psychiatry, intensive outpatient programs, partial hospitalization programs, sober living, detox, recovery communities, and not-for-profit programs.
The first thing you need to do is educate yourself about what kind of options are out there.
When someone is ready to get help, they jump at whatever option is right in front of them.
I see this scenario play out often, and they usually don't make strategic decisions, which can waste a lot of time and money.
You only get so many shots at this and there are pros and cons to every single option.

I wrote an insider's guide on...

Continue Reading...

Getting Them To Admit They Have An Addiction

You can't force someone to admit that they have an addiction.
Honestly, the harder you try, the more they will dig in that they don't have an addiction. There are ways to get someone to admit to the issue without trying to force them.

Since I've been in the addiction recovery world for 20+ years, I have witnessed an abundance of denial, and denial is very, very powerful.
There are reasons why people either can't or won't see the issue, but I want to give you five tactics that I use to help you circumvent that denial ego defense mechanism.

Tactic #1 Keep the Conversation Light.
First and foremost, and maybe even most importantly, keep the conversation as casual, light, and short as possible.
Don't try to have a big talk with them because as soon as you start talking seriously, their defenses go up. Wouldn't yours? Their walls are going to go up immediately. If you're casual and comfortable in a conversation, the other person will too.

Tactic #2 Normalize the Addiction.
Try to normalize...

Continue Reading...

Is It Borderline Personality Disorder or Addiction? (or both?)

Is it Borderline Personality Disorder or Addiction?

Borderline personality disorder and substance use disorders frequently occur together, and there's a lot of overlap in symptoms.
How do you pull the pieces apart to see if you're dealing with addiction or borderline personality disorder?

Symptoms of Borderline Personality Disorder

You'll see frantic efforts to avoid reality or imagined abandonment. You're going to see a pattern of intense and unstable emotions. People with a borderline personality disorder often engage in dangerous impulsive acts like binge eating, reckless driving, excessive shopping, unsafe sex, and substance use disorders. You may also see self-harming behaviors and recurrent suicidal ideation. You'll see intense mood swings in someone with borderline personality disorder, and they'll often struggle with feelings of emptiness.

People with BPD may demonstrate inappropriate, very intense anger and sometimes feel disassociated from themselves and the world around...

Continue Reading...
1 2

50% Complete

Two Step

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.