3 Ways You Might Be Enabling and Not Coaching

3 Ways You Might Be Enabling and Not Coaching

In order to know if you might be enabling and not coaching you first have to recognize the difference between enabling and coaching. Enabling is when you are doing something for your client that they can or should be doing for themselves. Your job as a recovery coach is not to save your client or do things for them that they should be doing for themselves, it is merely to show them the path to success and how to do all of those things for themselves! If you are worried you might be enabling and not coaching there are some signs that can let you know. Here are 3 ways you might be enabling and not coaching:

You are allowing rules to be bent or broken

As a recovery coach it is your responsibility to set firm and easily defined boundaries, guidelinesand rules for your client. If you are allowing rules to be bent or broken you might be enabling and not coaching. You begin allow the rules to be bent or broken when you stop understanding that you deserve to be respected and that means your boundaries, rules, and guidelines you lay out for your client must be respected. If your requests for respect and accountability fall on deaf ears and only result in more rules being bent or broken or missed appointments etc. then you might be enabling and not coaching. You have to set personal boundaries as a coach that cannot be repeatedly crossed.

Cleaning up their mess

If you find yourself covering for your client if they miss work, school or IOP then you might be enabling and not coaching. If you have picked up your client at a bar in the middle of the night or bailed them out of jail than you are enabling and not coaching. An addict should always take responsibility for their actions and their life. By constantly helping them escape responsibility you are making their addiction worse and helping them destroy themselves which is the exact opposite of what you want to do.

Not confronting them

If you are afraid of confronting your client about their behavior then you might be enabling and not coaching. Your job is to give your client the best advice you have and to call them out on their behavior to better their life. There is a good chance they will get angry but addiction is a problem that needs some tough love and you know this. A drug or alcohol addiction wont go away all by itself and it is your job to coach your client and confront them about their problems. If you aren’t confronting them out of fear or whatever reason then you are enabling and not coaching.

It can be really easy to enable an addict or alcoholic instead of coaching them. A lot of the times the two are closely related but being able to know the signs you might be enabling and not coaching can help to avoid any enabling problems.



5 Ways to Motivate Your Client to Take Action

How To Motivate Your Client Into Action

Some people come into recovery with a ton of motivation. They can’t wait to get started on a new way of life. Over time, their motivation may begin to wane. They start feeling better and they stop taking action in their recovery. Other clients are unmotivated from the get go. They must be encouraged and coached from the very start. Whatever the case, here are 5 ways to motivate your child to take action in their recovery:

5 Ways to Motivate Your Client to Take Action: Come up with reasons to change

Sit down with your client and come up with a list of reasons they want to change their behavior and their life. Talk about past behaviors and find out, from them, exactly why they want recovery and a new life. Write it all down and identify problem and risk areas for your client. Provide clear feedback on your client’s current situation and its possible consequences or risks.

5 Ways to Motivate Your Client to Take Action: Set goals

One of the best ways to motivate your client to take action is to help them set realistic, achievable goals and lay out the steps they need to take to reach those goals. For example, if your client is looking for a job, lay out the steps he or she needs to take to achieve that such as creating a resume, filling out applications, or talking to an employment recruiter. Breaking everything down into small steps can be a great way to motivate your client to take action.

5 Ways to Motivate Your Client to Take Action: Set time limits

Once you have laid out the steps that your client needs to take to achieve a goal, give them a deadline. Work with them to give them a realistic date on which to have each step finished. Check up on their progress along the way. Working to a deadline can be a great way to motivate your client to take action.

5 Ways to Motivate Your Client to Take Action: Celebrate successes

When your client finishes a task, give them a lot of encouragement and praise. For big mile stones, have a little celebration. Positive reinforcement can inspire your client to continue to take action in their recovery and their life. People are motivated by-and prefer to be motivated by-positive emotions like excitement, pride, a sense of belonging, and the thrill of achievement.

5 Ways to Motivate Your Client to Take Action: Share in the responsibility

You cannot take the action for your client. They must be willing to do the work in order to get their life back on track. However, you can help when they are feeling overwhelmed by a certain task. Offer to help them do difficult tasks or provide resources that can help them get started. Create an atmosphere that is conducive to change by being positive and proactive. Offer to help where you can instead of waiting to be asked for help.

Q&A: How do I coach a client with low self-esteem?

Low Self Esteem

Many people have low self-esteem when they come into recovery. It’s pretty common for an addict or alcoholic to look in the mirror and see someone they don’t like very much. Usually, in addiction, an addict or alcoholic will use drugs and alcohol to numb those unpleasant feelings. When the drugs and alcohol aren’t there, self-esteem can take an even bigger hit because they no longer have the false confidence that can come from a substance.

In addition, when a person first gets sober, they begin to remember all the things they did while drinking or using and all the people they hurt. They may start to realize how much time they have wasted during addiction, and that they are not where you “should” be in their life. Even if a client knows intellectually that addiction is a disease, part of them may still view it as a moral failing.

Whatever the reason, it is very likely that you will have to coach a client with low self-esteem at some point.

One of the challenges of coaching a client with low self-esteem is that it may be hard for them to let go of the image they have about themselves. For many, having low self-esteem is almost comforting. It allows them to avoid confronting anyone else because they just blame everything on themselves. They may also use it as an excuse to continue harmful behavior, i.e. “I lied to him because I’m not a good person.” Also, some people use low self-esteem to get sympathy or to avoid consequences. When someone confronts them about bad behavior, they will just say “I don’t blame you for being mad. I’m a terrible friend” or “I’m a piece of crap and I don’t deserve you in my life.” This is actually a form of emotional manipulation, because the confronter will often end up comforting the person with low self-esteem who was behaving badly.

One of the best ways to coach a client with low self-esteem is to get them involved in activities where they are helping others. This serves the dual purpose of snapping them out of selfish and self-centered thinking, and it makes them feel better about themselves. Doing service at AA meetings or volunteering at charitable organizations are great service activities. It’s tougher for people to rationalize that they’re terrible if they’re helping others, thereby helping to quell negative self-talk.

Meditation and exercise are also great self-esteem builders. Exercise releases endorphins, the body’s natural feel-good chemicals and it can help someone create a healthy body image. Meditation is another great way to reduce stress and increase a client’s level of acceptance and self-love.

Finally, one of the best things you can do when you coach a client with low self-esteem is to aid them in changing the way they behave and treat others. When a client starts to treat others with love and respect and behaving in a way they can be proud of, it can go a long way in building self-esteem.

Coaching Your Client Through Grief

Coaching Your Client Through Grief

Coaching your client through grief can be a tough process. However, it is very important to be there for your client during this time, because they run a high risk of relapse. Stay available to your client when you are coaching your client through grief, and try to recognize what stage of grief they are in when you have sessions. If it is appropriate, you may want to suggest additional therapy or coaching sessions during this time.

Coaching your client through grief: Recognizing the stages

When someone experiences loss, they usually go through different phases as they try to cope with it. The first stage is usually denial. When someone learns of a loss, they will not initially be able to cope with the fact that someone they love is gone. This is often a temporary defense, but some people can become locked in this phase. When you are coaching your client through grief, part of your job is to help your client accept the reality of the situation.

The second phase of grief is anger. People who are grieving wonder why this happened to them. They may feel like it is unfair or try to blame someone for their loss. When someone who has experienced loss moves from denial to anger, they have misplaced rage that they may direct inwardly, towards others (loved ones or complete strangers), or towards the person who is gone. They may resent the person they have lost, feel guilty about the resentment, and become even angrier. When you are coaching your client through grief, it is important to recognize that this is a normal part of loss, and to remain nonjudgmental in a session with someone in this stage.

The third stage of grieving is known as “bargaining.” Often at this stage, a person who has experienced loss feels helpless and vulnerable and needs to try to regain control. They will often make “deals” with God or a higher power, asking for a loved one back if they mend their ways or in exchange for their material possessions. If a loved one is terminally ill, family members will often make promises to God or a higher power in exchange for postponing or delaying death.

When people experiencing loss realize that bargaining is futile, they will often enter into a state of depression. This is the stage at which people usually seek out the help of a counselor or recovery coach. This is a normal stage of grief and most experts agree that is important a grieving person fully experience it. When you are coaching your client through grief, it is not recommended that you try to talk someone out of their sadness at this stage or try to cheer them up.

The final stage of grief is acceptance. Acceptance is different from resignation; it is a period of withdrawal and calm. People who have experienced a loss begin to come to terms with it. This is not a period of happiness, but of peace. Some people never reach this stage. They become locked in anger or depression and can’t move on. When you are coaching your client through grief, it is your goal to bring someone to this phase.

5 signs your child is using mollies

5 Signs Your Child Is Using Mollies

5 signs your child is using mollies

“Molly” is the street name of the powder or crystal form of the drug MDMA, a chemical most commonly known for its use in the drug ecstasy. Unlike Ecstasy, which has a reputation for being laced with everything from caffeine to methamphetamine, molly — a name shortened from “molecule” — is thought of as “pure” MDMA.

5 signs your child is using mollies: Jaw Clenching

People often clench their jaws and grind their teeth while using mollie because of the stimulant nature of the drug. These effects can last even into the next day when your child is using mollie.

5 signs your child is using mollies: Sudden loss of appetite

One of the signs your child is using mollies is a sudden loss of appetite. Users often lose their appetite while on the drug and don’t eat normally again for one to three days. Mollie tends to cause nausea and also has stimulant properties which can make your child not want to eat.

5 signs your child is using mollies: High and Low Temperatures

High doses of Molly can interfere with the ability to regulate body temperature, resulting in a sharp increase in body temperature (hyperthermia). This can cause dehydration and dizziness. Once the mollie wears off, the body can become abnormally cold.

5 signs your child is using mollies: Signs of depression or sadness

Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that affects mood, sleep, pain, emotion, appetite, and other behaviors. The increase of serotonin is what causes the feeling of happiness and excitement when your child is using mollies. However, molly use depletes the serotonin in the brain, so the next day a user often feels anxious, depressed, and tired. Over time, mollies can damage serotonin-containing neurons; some of these studies have shown these effects to be long-lasting. Molly users experience long lasting confusion, depression, and selective impairment of working memory and attention processes.

5 signs your child is using mollies: Not being able to get out of bed for an extended period of time; exhaustion

After molly has run its course many users will feel fatigue among more long-lasting effects such as diminished mental capacity, sensitivity to light, paranoia, and impaired ability to think. If your child is using mollies, they probably stayed up all night on the drug, so the next day they tend to be very tired. This fatigue can last for several days. Tiredness plus feelings of depression often make it hard for a user to get out of bed the day after using mollies.

Other signs your child is using mollies include changes in behavior, grades, friends, as well as mood swings and anxiety.

A parent should also be aware of the signs their child has overdosed. The warning signs of overdose are: headache, tremors, vomiting, collapsing, feeling hot or sick, fainting, loss of control over movement of the body, racing pulse or heart, problem with urinating, and foaming in the mouth. Death can be a result of using Molly due to seizures and cardiac arrest. If you notice any of these signs of overdose, call 911 immediately.





In Person vs. Online Recovery Coaching

In person vs online

Recovery Coaching is a professional relationship that helps people who are in or want recovery from alcoholism and addiction. Recovery coaching helps to produce results in addict’s and alcoholic’s lives, jobs, careers, organizations, businesses, etc., while also helping them to move forward with their recovery. Recovery coaches tap into the health and wellness in each individual. They are different than sponsors and therapists because they don’t promote any particular way of getting and achieving sobriety. The focus of recovery coaches is to create and sustain meaningful lives for addicts and alcoholics. Recovery Coaches are professionals who have been trained to listen, observe and customize their approach to the individual needs of their clients. They are trained to help clients resolve ambivalence, increase confidence and motivation, and use a strengths-based approach to addiction recovery.

Recovery coaching in person is exactly what it sounds like; meeting with a recovery coach face to face. Obviously some of the major benefits of recovery coaching in person is that you get to meet your recovery coach, feel their energy and really build a close bond with them. Not only that but there is the real accountability factor of allowing your recovery coach to look you in the eyes. Recovery coaching in person means that you have to be more honest and real. Although it does mean that you have to take time out of your schedule to go meet with them.

Online recovery coaching gives you the benefit of having a recovery coach anywhere in the United States. Online recovery coaching also doesn’t clog up your busy schedule. With online recovery coaching you can at any time meet with your recovery coach and all you need is a computer. Online recovery coaching does have its down falls. Online recovery coaching doesn’t allow you to meet face to face with your recovery coach and there isn’t as much accountability just talking to someone online as there is meeting someone face to face.

Really the only difference between recovery coaching in person and online recovery coaching is the difference in flexibility and accountability. Both online and in person recovery coaching can meet the goals of what a recovery coach is meant to do for you. Really whether or not one is better than the other is all dependent on your wants and needs in your own life. If you have a busy schedule and already are pretty accountable than online recovery coaching may be the perfect thing for you to take your recovery to the next level without having to take much time out of your day. If you are struggling with accountability and are more of the type of person who benefits from real one on one social interaction to get going then in person recovery coaching is probably the best option for you. With the one on one interaction you can really thrive within that connection with your recovery coach as opposed to online.

Either way for anyone new in sobriety or even later in sobriety who wants to take their lives to the next level can benefit from both in person recovery coaching and online recovery coaching depending on their needs.

Q&A: What credentials do I need to be a recovery coach?

Q&A: What credentials do I need to be a recovery coach?

In most states, you don’t need any credentials in order to be a recovery coach yet. Although, if you want you can get your recovery coach certification by taking recovery coaching classes through some kind of recovery coaching program. Many states do offer courses in order to become a Recovery Support Specialist. This is not necessary for you to be a recovery coach though. You may find it easier to get a job as a recovery coach with some credentials though and the programs and classes to become a recovery coach are fairly inexpensive for what you are getting. There may come a time when recovery coaches are asked to have credentials before working with clients but it has not come yet. Part of this may be because a lot of what recovery coaches do is based on experience and not so much what they learn in a class. Either way the credentials won’t hurt if you want to be a recovery coach but not having them will not and should not hold you back from becoming what you want: a recovery coach.

12 Steps to a Relapse

12 steps to a relapse

12 Steps to a Relapse   

The 12 step model for addiction recovery have long been accepted by the addiction treatment community as a way to stay clean and sober in the long term. Another commonly held idea in addiction treatment is that relapse starts long before you ever pick up a drink or a drug. These two ideas come together in the 12 steps to a relapse.

The Alcoholics Anonymous: Big Book says, “What we really have is a daily reprieve contingent on the maintenance of our spiritual condition.” (pg.85) This means that even if we have worked all 12 steps, we can still relapse if we do not maintain our spiritual condition. If we become comfortable in our recovery and “rest on our laurels” we run the risk of relapse.

Sometimes old patterns of behavior begin to come back. This is where we may start to see a relapse begin. We may start working the 12 steps in reverse. This is what is known as the 12 steps to a relapse.

It begins when we get too busy to carry the message. Maybe we have replaced recovery with work, gym or a relationship. We get overconfident. We have less contact with other recovering alcoholics and meeting attendance starts to decline. This is the first step in the 12 steps to a relapse.

Next we may stop praying or meditating. We no longer seek conscious contact with a higher power. It may be subtle at first. But over time, we no longer pray or meditate at all.

The next step in the 12 steps to a relapse is the unworking of steps 10-4.  We stop taking inventory and we stop making amends. Our character defects come back, and we are unwilling to have a higher power remove them. We lose sight of the moral inventory we once made and begin to repeat the same behavior we exhibited during addiction.

The 12 steps to a relapse continue when we take our will back. Not just a little, as we may have done in the past, but the whole thing. We start to try to run the show.  The power we once believed  could restore us to sanity is now out the window. We begin believe we can do it ourselves. We believe we now have the power, and we can manage our own lives. These are unworking steps three, two, and one in the 12 steps to a relapse. At this point, we are likely to pick up a drug or drink. We likely feel irritable, restless, and discontent. The “hole in the soul” has come back, and we seek other things to fill it.

The 12 steps to a relapse can be avoided if we are constantly moving forward and growing in our program. This is why it is especially important to have a home group and get to know the people in it. Others can sometimes recognize when we have become lacking in our program or when we have begun to work the 12 steps to a relapse. They may be able to catch it before it is too late.

Recovery Options for a Chronic Relapser

Recovery Options for a Chronic Relapser

The recovery options for a chronic relapser have to be a little different than for those who have no history of relapses what so ever. A chronic relapser struggles to stay sober. Each time they manage to get any time in recovery they end up using or drinking again. And unfortunately most addicts and alcoholics are chronic relapsers. This does not mean that chronic relapsers cannot stay sober because they can, if they are willing to pick themselves up and try again.

What is a chronic relapser?

Chronic relapsers often get caught in a kind of negative cycle or revolving door syndrome. This means they get caught in a negative pattern of going to rehab, getting sober, leaving rehab and then relapsing again. Chronic relapsers will do this for years and may even just decided that the recovery options out there for them such as rehab just don’t work. There are so many reasons that chronic relapsers get caught in a revolving door syndrome but the realities are they haven’t adequately received recovery options to prepare them for the transition into life again.

So what are the recovery options for chronic relapsers?

A recovery option for chronic relapsers that is effective is a rehab program that combines medication with therapy and counseling. Rehab programs for chronic relapsers should be inpatient and long term programs that begin with detox. A proper recovery option for chronic relapsers is a rehab program that designs the program for each individual case to suit each person’s specific needs and addresses all of their specific emotional, mental and physical issues. A recovery option for chronic relapsers is also a rehab program that offers follow-up options which is imperative for chronic relapsers staying sober in the long run.

Another recovery option for chronic relapsers is a part of drug rehab; it is known as relapse prevention. A great recovery option for chronic relapsers is for them to attend relapse prevention classes. Relapse prevention classes teach a chronic relapser all about the reasons they relapse so they can avoid it happening again. Relapse prevention classes teach how relapse is a process not a single event and is individualized to each person so they recognize their own unique triggers and relapse warning signs. This is paramount to a chronic relapser being able to avoid slipping up again. Once a chronic relapser is aware they can begin to take action to avoid using drugs or drinking again.

Aftercare is an absolute paramount recovery option for chronic relapsers. Aftercare is also a part of follow-ups with drug treatment. Aftercare offers groups, alumni meetings, coaching, and so much more depending on what the chronic relapser needs. Aftercare is way for the chronic relapser to check in with people who will keep them accountable and motivated in their recovery. One of the biggest ways to avoid relapse is to keep accountability and motivation in recovery. Aftercare offers this through the community that is also sober meeting up once a week or so.

The recovery options for chronic relapsers are specifically designed to take the addict and alcoholic out their revolving door syndrome so they never have to use or drink again. While some people say relapse is a part of recovery it does not have to be a part of recovery if the addict or alcoholic takes the right action.

Q&A: How long should I wait before becoming a Recovery coach?

If you are in recovery yourself it may be a good idea to wait at least a year before becoming a recovery coach. If you are wondering why you should wait at least a year before you become a recovery coach it is because that amount of time will allow you to become stable in your own recovery before you begin helping someone become stable in theirs. Being a recovery coach is no easy task and you have to be able to confidently help other recovering addicts and alcoholics. If it is at all possible it would be best to wait as long as possible before becoming a recovery coach. For instance, waiting 5 years would be even better than one year. 5 years would give your own recovery more stability, accountability and reference.

With at least 5 years of sobriety you will have experienced most of the things that someone you are coaching is going to go through and know how to handle the situation or give good coaching advice based on your own experience. Being a recovery coach is a big job, because someone else is expecting you to help them stay sober even though you can’t do it for them you can send them off in the right or wrong direction and you have to make sure that you are headed in the right direction yourself. The best time to wait before becoming a recovery coach if you really want to be the best recovery coach possible is 2-5 years. If you can do this you will not only be more comfortable but someone else will be more comfortable with you as their recovery coach and that’s the whole point.