Dr. Barnes and Dr. Wilson personally answer the phones from 8:00AM until 5:00PM (PST) everyday.
In U.S. & Canada: 888-541-6350
In Southern California, Nationally, or Internationally, call:
818-466-9258

Non 12 Step News for August 16, 2015

Who Are Our Clients?

We rarely take clients who are under 40 for various reasons we consider pertinent:

  • We’re over 60 and the socio-cultural gap can be a problem;
  • Most potential clients under 40 are too immature to benefit from our sophisticated approach;
  • Most adults under 40 are insufficiently motivated;
  • We like working with the clients who are most apt to benefit from our research based approach which most younger people aren’t ready for.

Note the word “most” because we do occasionally take on exceptional clients who are in their 30s. And yes, we can and do assess that carefully, with a 30 year history of doing those assessments on over 6,000 adults.

Having disposed of who we don’t accept as clients, we can move along to who do:

  • Adults whose primary medication of choice is alcohol;
  • Individuals who are smart, sensitive, and who have succeeded in some areas of life and overcome other obstacles on their own;
  • People who accept responsibility for their choices and actions and would like to discover some new options;
  • Women and men who need permission to be happy;
  • Clients who need short term support in adjusting to changed circumstances while they create a new “normal” that does not include abusing alcohol.

You may find it helpful in making your own decisions if we expand on each of these just a bit.

People who abuse alcohol are different from those who abuse hard and illegal drugs, or are “addicted” to porn, gambling, the internet, or shopping, etc., AA and NA to the contrary. Besides, why would you go to a “program” that pretends they can address every condition on earth with the same “Facilitated 12 Step” menu that neither addresses nor helps anyone? Never mind the confidentiality issues.

Your personal situation is unique to you, as is your solution, and sitting around in groups isn’t going to do anything for you except to depress, annoy, and expose you to all sorts of exploitation.

Item two: you need to be smart, sensitive and used to dealing with problems on your own because otherwise you won’t have the maturity and background necessary to the creation of a new personal normal with which to enjoy the coming years.

Interestingly, if you didn’t have those traits you wouldn’t be reading this. This newsletter, like the material on our website, is written to both screen in people who are appropriate to work with us, and screen out those who aren’t before a phone call is ever made. Congratulations!

A lot of our work revolves around how to be happy which those who abuse alcohol clearly aren’t (or if they are, aren’t reading this). Frequently when it comes to being reasonably happy, we are our own worst enemies. True for me as well as you. Let’s figure out how you can get out of your own way?

Giving up and/or modifying your drinking will have a number of stumbling blocks. It helps to be forewarned, to plan ahead, to learn from situations and circumstances, and to have support available that does not compromise you. That’s part of what our 12 weeks of regular, scheduled follow-up, and other availability, provides that no one else offers. Ever!

So, do you fit? Almost undoubtedly. And it only requires a phone conversation to confirm it – both for you and for us.

Why You’ll Want to be 50, 60, 70, and 80…

Regardless of what changes we are contemplating, or embarking on, maintaining motivation is the biggest challenge. We are as aware as you are that the process of exchanging short term relief for long term, if hazy, benefits is a daunting one.

So let’s take a look at managing the transition from where you are to where you want to be.

As a frequent example from my own past, I can remember too many times when I simply said to myself, “It’ll be interesting to look back in 6 months and see how I got through this.”

The important point here was how I was talking to myself. I was assuming that I was going to successfully navigate whatever disaster had befallen me – including giving up my half bottle of vodka – or more – every other day.

That’s the exact opposite of, “Hi, I’m Ed and I am a powerless alcoholic and I will never get over it and I am doomed to join this cult as my only alternative.” Believe me, if that was true, I’d have kept on drinking.

But the place to start is how you talk to yourself and what you say to and about yourself.

My motivations, like yours, were and are personal. They are probably eccentric, idiosyncratic, contradictory, and time limited. But they are ours and that’s what we’ll need to learn to rely on.

Part of maintaining is projecting into the future a bit and liking what you see. Right now you probably aren’t too thrilled by your vision of the road ahead:

  • Ill health;
  • Incapitation;
  • Ruptured relationships;
  • Premature death;
  • A thousand regrets;
  • Probably not the bucket list you envisioned as a child or young adult.

Happily there are alternatives to the “empty bucket” list:

  • Improved health – better than your current norm;
  • Increased and diverse activities, whether by yourself or with similarly inclined adults;
  • Healed and/or new relationships founded on mutual respect and interests;
  • A postponed death;
  • Few regrets;
  • A balanced view of your life;
  • Opportunities to engage with and improve the lives of others;
  • And? Add yours, here, please.

Our so-called “latter years” for many of us will amount to 30, 40, or even 50 years of either times of maximum joy, intimacy, and freedom, or decades of unnecessary decline, depression, and despair.

Once again, as always, what’s your choice going to be?

By |2016-11-14T06:14:07+00:00August 16th, 2015|Newsletters|0 Comments

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