And the Fires Continue…

Moving our physical office and resuming services, as well as my move, has been delayed by the Woolsey fire which continues to keep Calabasas under lock down. But we are fine and fires do not affect our new office location or my living arrangements, just the timing. So if this is short, it’s because we are scrambling to rearrange the schedule we had made to manage the changes.

That said, the following is a response to a caller last week who said,

“So it’s just talk therapy?”

It’s hard for people to understand what we do because everyone has been so brainwashed by AA based programs. These rehabs offer all sorts of magic fixes from equine therapy, to wolf-dog therapy, to ropes courses and of course the magic of the Palms, the Beach, and even helicopter therapy which flies you to the top of the scared mountain to meet your higher power. And endless AA meetings and Step Work and…

So if we’re not doing magic, or “filler,” what are we doing? Just talking?

Yes, we do a lot of talking. Initially it’s educational – deprogramming you from all of the AA/12 Step nonsense that have so permeated our culture that people not only think it “works” – which it does for 5% of those who try it and fit the model – but think it’s the only thing that does. Undoing that is no small task.

Then there is learning to use Cognitive Behavioral Therapy which is a coping skill you internalize not something a therapist does with, for, or to you.

Moving along, there are all of the habit breaking strategies to be learned and the new habits to be instilled, coached, and supported.

Diet? Yes, that needs evaluated and adapted. Blood sugar management, for example, comes disguised as what you might think of as a craving for alcohol. It’s not.

Then there are your possible assorted needs to disconnect from the past, cope with spouses and family members who haven’t been “deprogrammed,” repel efforts to sabotage your changing, and various other needs which really can be defined, addressed and left behind in fairly short order.

Yes. 13 weeks is enough for most of you. Not that we cut you loose at any specific point and say “Good luck, don’t drink, go to AA.”

So no, it’s not “just talk therapy,” and we are not “just” your paid friend. We are professionals who have committed to specialize in helping clients overcome their misuse of alcohol.

We Know the Holidays Have Arrived…

And it’s unlikely any of you are going to suddenly decide to quit drinking now. But just maybe, after Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, New Years, but before the Super Bowl, or at least Ground Hog Day, you may decide to start a different sort of year?

Timing is why we chose this time frame to update and reconfigure our practice as well as downsizing a bit to give us each a bit more time for other things.

So think about it, please.

Maybe schedule a free Skype based consultation with one or both of us to see how distance delivery might work for you.

Whatever you decide, Happy Holidays. Be safe.