Let me start by qualifying myself here: I risked my career by going into treatment, paid about $14,000 out of my savings account for said treatment, and sold my car to sign up for a $15,000 coaching program in my first year of recovery. Insurance only covered detox, which I needed in order to get into a residential treatment facility. While I don’t expect everyone to go out, cash in their savings and sell their car, I do see a major gap between what people expect their life to be like and what they are willing to sacrifice to get it. On the other hand, there are thousands of fear-mongering and marketing-savvy addiction service organizations out there just sucking money out of the pockets of families, promising them a quick fix from the chronic plague of addiction. Below are five things you absolutely need to know before you invest in addiction treatment services:
1. Put Recovery First – Whether for you or for a family member, as long as your plan is well thought out and you aren’t selling all of your earthly possessions, investing in recovery services should be a top priority. It can be troubling to hear people say that they cannot afford a few thousand dollars when their or another human life is on the line. Typically, the high-functioning alcoholic or addict will scoff at the price tag on addiction treatment services...all while driving around in a nice car, wearing brand-name clothes, taking vacations, and dining out. Let me tell you one thing: without good recovery we have nothing. Good recovery and self -development services are priceless! Not only are you investing in a person, but you are also creating a ripple effect to improve the lives of this person’s entire social and family unit! You can’t put a price tag on a life, and – more importantly – if you do, you run the high risk of losing that life altogether.
That being said, investing in just any addiction treatment or self-development program can be just as risky. Which brings me to my next point…
2. Understand What is Being Promised – Dealing with addiction is one of the most emotionally charged situations you’ll ever have to face-off against. I see too many families panic, go after a “quick fix” and invest a lot of money in addiction services that are hyped up to the max by a slick marketing organization. Let me repeat, these services specialize in marketing, not the wellbeing of you, your son, daughter or other loved one. Sadly, there is no quick fix when it comes to addictive behaviors, and these funds could be utilized in a much more efficient way.
3. Recognize that Addiction is a Chronic Illness – Today, addiction is most often treated as an acute illness: people wait until their disease is life threatening before taking action. Can you imagine doing this with any other physical or mental illness? I was highly self-aware and understood the progression of this illness enough to seek professional help before I lost external things, got a DUI, or caused my family more unnecessary pain, etc.
Also, in the same way as many other chronic illnesses, there is no cure. Addiction doesn’t just go away after 30-days in a posh rehab. Treatment needs to be very customized and handled on a case-by-case basis. We invest so much money in detox and a 28-day program, but typically fail to come up with a strong, long-term continuum of care. This can be compared to going into remission for cancer without scheduling regular check-ups. It’s a futile and risky practice at best. Considering halfway and sober houses, professional counseling, or an addiction coach or sober companion can help keep you or your loved one on the right path.
4. Private Services May Be Your Best Option – I recently had someone tell me that she was grateful for our services because we weren’t doing more of the “same.” What she meant was that we don’t offer sub-par services that are paid for by insurance companies and executed by employees who are barely compensated for their time. Unfortunately, this happens more often than not. Ask anyone at a treatment center or outpatient program and they will probably tell you that their entire staff is spread incredibly thin and doing what they can with the little that they have. As we often say in recovery, half measures avail us nothing. Our goal is to be able to treat every single person who needs help without sacrificing the quality of our services. Money (or the lack thereof) neither deflates nor encourages us: we do what we do because we love doing it…and we’re pretty great at it, too!
5. You Will Never Regret It! – What you will regret is jumping the gun and making hasty decisions; spending tens of thousands of dollars without consulting with anyone who has actually been there before. Find people you trust and ¬– if you don’t know any in the recovery world – find them. With their support you’ll make better decisions. When you make smart and thoughtful investments and implement a plan designed to help you or your loved ones overcome addiction and aid in self-development, you will always, always win!
RealYou Revolution, LLC. is New England's premier resource for cutting edge substance use disorder services.
Advanced Intervention - Sober Companions - Recovery Coaches - Family Support Services Case Management -DUI/OUI Support - Anger Management Assistance - Food Addiction -Self Esteem Development - Anxiety Management
A major part of overcoming addiction and sabotaging behaviors is learning to change our perspective. We can be the victim or we can be the person who has been presented with new opportunity. Remember that negativity can be an addictive behavior in and of itself. Last week I brought a client to what was for me the worst 12-step meeting I have ever attended. The message didn’t resonate with me at all and it seemed as though there was more talk of being in the problem vs. living in the solution. Three years ago there is no way I would have sat through 10 minutes of that meeting let alone complete the hour having gained quite a bit. During the initial moments of the meeting I noticed myself becoming frustrated that the speaker was going on and on about only his perils with drugs and that every other word was “F@#!”. He seemed to be rifling off drug addiction statistics out of nowhere as if he was the all mighty expert. While he was at one time homeless and his story was nothing like mine, I suddenly couldn’t believe how ridiculous I was being and how “in my old energy” I had become. I was able to quiet the judgmental mind and look for all of the ways I could identify instead of compare. I looked for things I could GAIN during the meeting vs. count the ways it was a waste of my time. Also, instead of reacting impulsively, I relaxed, breathed, and settled into my body. I thanked the universe for showing me where this disease very well could have brought me. I also thanked the universe for the fact that even though this man was not directly helping me, in speaking he was most likely helping himself and certainly some others in the room. I looked around at everyone in there and recognized that each and every one of us was fighting out own battle and that the beautiful thing is that we were all there to better ourselves. Because I didn’t walk out of the meeting, I was lucky enough to hear some wonderful people speak at the end. I was struck primarily by two young men in their 20’s who both felt like “they shouldn’t say much since they are really new to the program”, and it reminded me number one of how equal we all are, but number two that I was once the newbie who thought I was less worthy because I didn’t have years of sobriety. There was another young man in his 20’s whose ride ditched him at the last minute but he was still able to get to the meeting. Now that was inspiration, he had every excuse in the world as to why he didn’t have to be there, but he was. Because I like to force myself to speak as frequently as possible, I raised my hand. I sincerely thanked all of them for being there that day and for reminding me of things I can’t ever forget. But in my mind I was also grateful to be humbled and to be aware of the fact that I can’t control many things in my life, but I CAN control my behavior and my attitude and my perspective!
about the master coach
Danielle, the Founder & Master Coach of RealYou Revolution, is a woman in long term recovery with a passion for helping others overcome their own personal demons – whatever they may be.