Levels of Care in Dual Diagnosis Treatment


Just as addiction is nuanced and different for just about everyone, so too, are the levels of care for different people. When it comes to dual diagnosis treatment, there are several steps that are taken to ensure each client gets the absolute best treatment that can be provided. When we design a particular treatment plan, our goal is to ensure that each client gets the treatment that will help them conquer addiction and learn to live healthily with any additional mental illness issues.

At Thrive Treatment℠, we offer several levels of care, depending on the specific needs of the dual diagnosis client.

Our most comprehensive treatment plan is the partial hospitalization program. This plan is perfect for those that are new to sobriety or prone to repeat relapses. Our entire team circles the client with care, and there’s a comprehensive assessment, daily group meetings, individual psychotherapy sessions two times a week, and a complete psychiatric evaluation as well as checkups. For those with a dual diagnosis, this is the perfect program to get the care and attention they need in an environment that fosters growth.

Another treatment plan we offer at Thrive Treatment℠ is our intensive outpatient treatment program. This program works for those that are more stable in their lives but may need some support in managing the demands of career, family, and home life. After transitioning out of the partial hospitalization program, many of our dual diagnosis treatment clients find that the intensive outpatient treatment program is perfect for helping them sustain healthy, productive, and happy sober lives.

Other programs, like the outpatient drug treatment program, offer less intensive levels of care that focus more on providing family and community for those that have already completed our other programs and simply want to stay in touch with mentors and colleagues that have assisted them throughout their recovery journey. After completing a dual diagnosis treatment program, many of our clients want to stay connected to the Thrive family, and they can do that through this program, or through other avenues like our alumni and aftercare support programs.

No matter which level of care is right for you, at Thrive Treatment℠ of Santa Monica, California, we offer solutions to help all of our clients maximize life after conquering addiction. An addiction of the past can be a stepping stone for future growth and accomplishment. Our goal is to help you see that. Call Thrive Treatment℠ at (888) 975-8474 to get started with us today.

Going to Treatment for Addiction as a Young Man in Santa Monica

Going to Treatment for Addiction as a Young Man in Santa Monica

Santa Monica– California’s hidden gem of a city. With a population of a little under 100,000, some might say Santa Monica is one of the few pieces of paradise still basking in all of its natural glory. As a young man in Santa Monica, getting sober now is one of the best choices you can make. Being young means we still have a lot of life to live. Truth be told, everyone goes through something challenging in their lives, whether they tell us or not. Most of us use problematic coping skills to “deal” with that something all their lives through and are never truly able to effectively work through it or change. One of the benefits of rehab in Santa Monica is that we can learn how to deal with addiction the right way– and with so much to do in this great city, we won’t miss a beat finding sober ways to make the most out of life.

One of the most iconic places here in Santa Monica– the Santa Monica Stairs– also happens to be a great place for some sober fun and exercise. Grab a few friends and make a workout out of climbing the iconic stairs, then hang around the area to take a look at some of the most beautiful homes in the city. The Santa Monica Stairs are a great way to get out, grab some culture, and break a sweat.

Other fun sober activities to do here in Santa Monica include surfing, exercising on the boardwalk, watching street performers on the Third Street Promenade, and grabbing a bite to eat at the end of the iconic Santa Monica pier.

The benefits of rehab as a young man in Santa Monica are numerous– you’re able to confront your fears and insecurities at a young age before they affect too much of your life, you’re able to form relationships with great folks in recovery that will be there for you for the rest of your life, and you’re able to conquer an issue like addiction early enough to allow you to reach back and help another young guy dealing with the same substance abuse issues you might have been. Again, everyone goes through something, but the benefit of rehab as a young man is that you both get to learn the right way to beat addiction, and learn how to become a better man from it.

Thrive Treatment℠ is a premier outpatient addiction treatment center that helps our clients see just how powerful a life without substances can be. Through modalities like yoga and art therapy, we show our clients how to deal with life’s complications with grace, poise, and confidence. Call us at (888) 975-8474 to see how we can help you today.

Counting Our Holiday Blessings

Counting Our Holiday Blessings

You might have heard: Christmas is literally right around the corner! By now Thanksgiving is a few weeks away, and while we may or may not still have any turkey left in the fridge, we can probably all attest to experiencing a generally more pleasant mood when we’re out and about. People tend to be nicer, friendlier, and happier throughout the holiday season, and we can’t say we’re complaining!

In fact, one of the joys of our outpatient treatment model here at Thrive Treatment℠ is the fact that many of our clients are able to enjoy quality family time at home with those they love during these times of peace and relaxation, and down time, peace, and relaxation can all be perfect supplements for a number of ailments– addiction included.

Sometimes, during treatment, we can become so inundated with learning and growing as much as we can that we forget just how amazing simply being able to get the treatment we need for our addictions really is. The idea of addiction treatment only took off less than a hundred years ago with Bill W. and Dr. Bob’s founding of Alcoholics Anonymous (there were other sobriety programs before, but none with as much of a lasting impact), and since then, countless men and women have been able to return to even more fulfilling and gratifying lives as leaders, teachers, and mentors in their own communities thanks to what they’ve learned and experienced in treatment.

Addiction treatment has helped numerous people make strides in their lives that they wouldn’t have otherwise been able to make, and as members of the recovery community, we have the joy of being able to spread their victory stories to many more men and women everyday. Our mission is simple, and designated by The Big Book– to be a guiding light for others seeking freedom from addiction and restoration. As The Big Book says, “many could recover if they had the opportunity we have enjoyed.” Our goal is to make that opportunity available to them.

Here’s to all of the good the addiction treatment community does for the men and women it touches day in and day out!

Treatment gives us our lives back

This one almost goes without saying! The Big Book indicates that entering treatment signals “the beginning of the end of [our] old life, and the beginning of [our] emergence into a new one.” When we’re addicted, we can feel like our lives have been ripped apart. Addiction can change us into completely different people, and, through no fault of our own, we can become isolated from those we love and care about. Through treatment, however, reuniting is possible! Treatment teaches us how to address the problems that caused our substance use, how to make amends with those that we’ve wronged, and how to start over on the right track.

Additionally, treatment gives us the ability to extend our family through new relationships with our peers, and creates new outlets for us to find purpose even beyond sobriety. Here at Thrive Treatment℠, for instance, many of our former clients form lifelong bonds with the people they entered treatment with, and can count these friendships as some of the best relationships they’ve had in their lives. They go on to champion the treatment process with men and women in their communities, start businesses, and become pillars of their respective societies, using the guiding principles they learned right here as background.

After graduating from treatment, not only is addiction a thing of the past– but we have a new attitude and outlook on life that can take us to incredible heights in all kinds of fields. As The Big Book suggests, many find the lessons learned through addiction treatment to be of great help with many other avenues of their lives. A new shot at life is certainly something to be thankful for this holiday season!

The treatment community accepts us

When we’re addicted, we can quite often be shunned, even by the people who say they care about us and wish us the best. People who have never had the addiction illness don’t always understand it, and it’s no secret that we tend to fear what we don’t know. However, there’s always one place that will accept us for who we are, understand our struggle with mental obsession, spiritual maladies and physical allergies, and not judge us for it. That place is the treatment community. Even a hundred years back, before all of the rules of what would become Alcoholics Anonymous were fleshed out, there was one rule that was concrete: “The Alcoholics Anonymous groups oppose no one.” What a joy to know that now, even decades later, that same rule applies in our modern treatment communities!

There’s no better feeling than knowing that we always have somewhere to turn that understands us, and somewhere to go when times are tough and we need a shoulder (or a few) for support. With alumni programs, mixers and outings designed specifically to reunite graduates with those currently in the initial treatment process, the sense of community fostered by treatment programs is second to none, and that’s a holiday blessing if we’ve ever seen one!

Thrive Treatment℠ is an outpatient addiction treatment center in beautiful Santa Monica, California. We have over thirty years of collective experience in some of the most innovative and effective addiction treatment practices in the world, and one focus: making our clients better mentally, physically, and spiritually. Let this holiday season be one where addiction isn’t invited. Call us today at (888) 975-8474, and see how we can help you!

Believing in Ourselves

Believing in Ourselves

There are a lot of folks that say that seeing is believing. That’s true, to an extent. There’s plenty of things we want to see to believe. Even more that we have to see to believe. Cops usually have to see a crime scene to know it happened. We have to see a storm coming to decide to evacuate. We have to see a million dollars before we believe it’s ours.

However, when it comes to addiction treatment, it’s important to remember that just because we may not always see physical progress, doesn’t mean that there’s not a wonderful transformation going on inside. Not only is treatment largely a mental process (remember, The Big Book tells us that we’re combatting a “mental obsession and a physical allergy”), but what are our eyes are trained to see as “progress”  may not really be what we should be looking for at all. Think about it: for many of us, this may be our first time going through treatment. How can we really know what to count as progress? To us, simply not craving a substance any more may be suitable progress. However, if we still have untouched issues that contributed to our substance abuse laying right underneath the surface, how can we truly judge “where we are” in the process? Even for those of us that have gone through addiction treatment before– every experience is so nuanced and individual that it’s almost impossible to “predict” exactly where we should be simply by looking for physical signs! Recovery is lifelong for a reason!

Ok, so what exactly am I believing in?

Here’s a kicker: belief in treatment doesn’t actually mean believing in treatment itself.

Funny to hear, right? Actually, Step Two of The Twelve Step program says as much. In treatment we aren’t demanded to believe anything about the process. Every step and skill taught is merely a suggestion, and we have the total right to take it or leave it. So when we refer to “belief” in treatment, we mean believing in ourselves. We mean taking what we learn, the strategies we develop, and the tools we forge through treatment, and believing that they can actually work in our own situations– then actually using them. Remember, even the most incredible, progressive of treatment programs can’t help us recover without our say-so.

Here at Thrive Treatment℠, we know just how important believing that we can make a change in our lives is to helping us actually do that. That’s why our programs focus on building life skills, fostering a sense of community, and learning how to process and discard the self-defeating stories and behaviors that keep us stuck. We get it– it’s not always easy to believe in ourselves right away in treatment. For many of us, our addiction can sap away belief in even what we thought we knew about ourselves. Addiction may have forced us into the deepest, darkest corners of our lives, and created a person that we didn’t recognize. Regaining who we are takes time, as does beginning to believe in ourselves again. Through community, we grow and learn with others that are also struggling with the same things we are. We organically build camaraderie with our peers, and eventually forge a family that helps us believe again– both in our ability to recover, and in our ability to conquer anything else that life throws at us.

What does The Big Book say about believing in ourselves?

It’s ironic, really. When The Big Book was originally published in 1939 by Alcoholics Anonymous founders Bill W. and Dr. Bob Smith, both men seemed like they would have had every right to negate the importance of believing in ourselves. Smith had been an alcoholic since his undergraduate years at Dartmouth, and by the time he teamed up with Bill W. and began what we now know as AA, he’d been to dozens and dozens of rehab centers over the span of some thirty years, to no avail. He was a certified physician, and all of his belief in practice and medicine could not seem to curb his drinking. Bill W. was a stoic drinker as well, and was threatened more than once with being locked up due to wet brain. He drank so often that doctors routinely advised him that he was at risk of killing himself with every additional drink he took.

Yet both men made sure to highlight the importance of belief early and often in the book that would become the metaphorical addiction bible for addicts. In fact, they stressed two forms of belief– belief in God, and belief in ourselves. Even though they had every reason not to believe based on their own experiences, they knew that in order to combat a spiritual, mental, and physical ailment, they had to believe in something: “Belief in the power of God, plus enough willingness, honesty and humility to establish and maintain the new order of things, were the essential requirements.”

Believing in ourselves gives us great power in addiction treatment. It allows us to see progress where we wouldn’t otherwise look, sunny skies when everything seems gray, and a future, that, a few months ago, we may never have imagined!

Thrive Treatment℠ is an outpatient addiction treatment center in sunny Santa Monica, California. We invest ourselves into our clients and their families, and we provide care that is transformative and long-lasting. We all have a purpose, and addiction simply isn’t help. We help our clients discover that purpose. Get started today by calling (888) 975-8474.

Making the Most out of a Second Chance

Making the Most out of a Second Chance

You’re hollow. You have no control. You feel pain, but you’ve gotten so used to it by now that it’s become your new normal. Friends have left you. Family is leaving. Work is all but a distant dream, because you can’t even bring yourself to concentrate on something else long enough to be halfway productive.

For many of us, this was the very scary reality of addiction. Perhaps we initially thought that picking up that substance for the first time would give us some relief from the pain we’d been dealing with. Maybe we thought that if we only took a sip, a sniff, or a shot, everything that was wrong would go away. Maybe we just wanted to forget, and the substance of our choice helped us do just that. Only it didn’t stop there. One drink led to two, one dose to another. We started to like the substance, or at least like what it did to us. Heck, who are we kidding? We didn’t like it– we loved it. We loved the euphoria we experienced. We loved throwing our inhibitions to the wind. We loved pretending, even if it was only temporarily, that our problems didn’t exist.

Then it started to take over.

They started slowly at first, almost innocently– the cravings. A little more of this, a little more of that. More time “at work” and less time with family. Using a little money from the savings account wouldn’t hurt right? After all, it was for emergencies, and we hadn’t had any emergencies in years. It would be okay. Before we knew it, we had no control over it. What we had enjoyed had turned into a habit, and that habit into an addiction. We were hooked, and couldn’t find a way out.

Somehow, however, we did. Maybe it was that family member who kept telling us we needed help. Maybe it was the day we forgot our only child’s name because that’s how out of our mind we were. Maybe it was when we knew, without a shadow of a doubt, that we had truly hit rock bottom. However it happened, it happened. We landed in a treatment facility, and in that moment, we knew just one thing: we had been blessed with a second chance.

Making the most of a second chance

Addiction treatment asks us to do two things– both of which are described in The Big Book. These two things transcend all types of treatment, and are completely universal.

First, we must admit that we are utterly powerless over addiction. Addiction is not our fault, it does not define us, and it did not happen to us because we aren’t good people. It is an illness, a disease that knows no color, gender, or age. It affects twelve year olds and eighty-two year olds. If it was something we could control, we would have stopped it long ago.

Secondly, we must agree that addiction can be cured. Though it is an illness of the mind, it is not terminal, and it can be resolved with the help of professionals and a willing mindset. The process to rid ourselves of addiction is methodical, as with any other illness. In short, it begins with diagnosing what caused our addiction, then addressing the spiritual malady within, and finally taking action steps to fix that malady.

Making the most out of our second chance means viewing every day as an opportunity. Even in the early days of addiction treatment, pioneers of Alcoholics Anonymous understood what an incredible opportunity treatment presented for them: “Many could recover if they had the opportunity we have enjoyed” (There is a Solution, page 119). We have an incredible gift in treatment. To be able to recover from our illness in the company of others facing similar situations, at the instruction of many who have been through what we’re going through before, and in an environment that fosters collaboration, unity, and solutions is not something to take lightly. Out of the darkness, addiction treatment stands as a light for us.

Making the most out of our second chance also means doing our part in the treatment process. This may sound like a record on repeat, but the importance of effort and attitude in treatment cannot be overstated. (There’s a reason why the two words are mentioned 75 times in the 164-page Big Book). Addiction treatment is a guide for us, and provides us with the tools we need to take back our lives and say goodbye to addiction for good, but it cannot cure us on its own. There isn’t a magic pill that we can take in order to no longer be addicted. Treatment is hard work, and the more we put into it, the more we’ll get out.

Finally, making the most of our second chance means that after we’ve conquered addiction, we should act as a beacon of light for others that are struggling. Our story of treatment isn’t something we should keep to ourselves. Sharing it with others who need to hear it allows us to do our part to rid our world of addiction, one person at a time. As the Big Book says, we are to “carry this message to other addicts, and to practice these principles [what we’ve learned] in all our affairs.” Our second chance doesn’t stop after we graduate from treatment. It’s still just beginning.

Thrive Treatment℠ is an outpatient addiction treatment center in Santa Monica, California. With a number of programs designed to cure addiction for good, we have something for everyone looking for help. Your second chance can start today. There’s no need to wait. Call us right now at (888) 975-8474!

Why Treatment Only Does As Much As You Let It

Why Treatment Only Does As Much As You Let It

Imagine you just won a million dollars. Maybe you struck it big in the lottery, or maybe the company you work for just got bought out and that was your cut. Maybe you sold some stocks. Anyway, you have a million extra dollars to your name now. What if, instead of spending it or investing it, though, you just let it sit there, and never claimed it? What if it wasn’t for any particular reason, and you didn’t have an ulterior motive for doing it? What if you just didn’t claim it?

Addiction treatment is a lot like that million dollars. It has the potential to change our lives, but it can’t do anything for us unless we take the steps to claim it. That doesn’t mean just deciding to get treatment either, or, in the case of outpatient treatment programs, merely deciding to show up. It means making a conscious effort to learn and grow through through therapy and activities, doing everything we can to practice implementing what we learn, and adjusting our attitude to one of positivity and action.

Are you saying treatment can only do so much for me?

Yes, and no! As The Big Book says, collaborative treatment is one of the only foolproof ways to get rid of our addiction for good, but the effectiveness of treatment stems entirely from how much effort we are willing to put into it. Recovery itself is a lifelong process, and initial treatment itself is a very small part of it. Still, simply attending treatment often isn’t enough, and, even if we do manage to beat our addiction while minimally participating, we run the risk of not fully fixing the problems that caused our substance use in the first place. Effort is paramount to any successful treatment, and The Big Book says as much: “Without a willing and persistent effort…, there can be little sobriety or contentment for us.”

So, how do we make the most out of treatment, and truly take advantage of all of the many benefits it has to offer? Besides effort, attitude is huge.

Effort and attitude

Let’s be honest. Before entering treatment, we often have very little, if any, reason to think about effort or attitude. We know that attitude and effort are both two very important ways of getting past our addiction and into a treatment center, but we balk because addiction, is, in fact, still in control of our mind. It typically takes a number of people– including family members, friends, and loved ones– to get us to take the plunge into addiction treatment. It’s normal to push what we know is right and necessary to the side when we’re dealing with an illness that literally changes the way we think.

Once in treatment, however, our mindset should start to shift, because, as The Big Book describes, “to get over drinking [or other addictions] will require a transformation of thought and attitude.”

We must realize that treatment, for all it’s worth, merely provides a platform for us to make our own discoveries about ourselves, and to uncover the spiritual maladies that drove us to continued substance use in the first place. Our therapists, peers, and mentors can help us with the strategies we need to do this, but it’s up to us to make the effort. Think about it: even the best physician in the world can’t help us if he or she doesn’t know what our problem is. In order to get the care we need, we have to first explain what’s going on to them, or, at the very least, open ourselves up for a diagnosis. Treatment is the same way! In order to get what we need out of it, our attitudes must reflect that we’re willing to put in the work that’s required!

How do I change my attitude, and put in the effort?

Just like with anything, an attitude change starts with the heart. As The Big Book states, “…it is an attitude which can only be changed by a deep and honest search of our motives and actions.” We have to ask ourselves: “Why are we here, in treatment? What do we hope to get out of it?” We all have a reason for addiction treatment, but sometimes we have to remind ourselves of that reason in order to keep going. No doubt, by going to treatment, we’ve made some sacrifices, committed ourselves to some significant life changes, and devoted ourselves to getting better. Remembering the steps we took to get to this point, and keeping them at the forefront of our minds whenever we’re feeling discouraged or not up to the challenge can make all the difference in adopting the right attitude! As for putting in the effort, having the right attitude helps take care of that. Once we’ve come to terms with the fact that the only people that can conquer our addiction is ourselves (and that treatment, like anything else, takes work), we’re inclined to put in the work we need to in order to see the results we want. Attitude, effort, and the effectiveness of our recovery are all inextricably intertwined!

Thrive Treatment℠ is an outpatient addiction treatment center located in sunny Santa Monica, California. We’re here to help our clients make the most out of treatment and the rest of their lives by providing them with community, instruction, and support. Call us today at (888) 975-8474 to see what we can do for you!

Training our Minds with Treatment

Training our Minds with Treatment

We can train our minds to do a lot of incredible things. For example, there’s Santa Claus. Admired by millions of us since we were kids, it’s hard to believe that someone we all know to be completely made up could still encourage us to spend so much money and make so much time for him. It’s because we’ve trained our minds to accept and appreciate the spirit of Saint Nick, even though we know he’s merely a figment of our imagination.

In treatment, we have to train our minds in much the same way. When we were addicted, we were weak and unable to resist whatever addiction threw at us. As The Big Book says, we were powerless against addiction.

Now, in treatment, it’s time to train our minds to recover that power. As The Big Book states, we “had to find a power by which we could live, and it had to be a Power greater than ourselves.” The greatest difference is that the chains of addiction that treatment can help us break are quite real. If we can learn how to believe so fervently in our imaginations even years after we know better, imagine how much stronger we can train our minds to recover our power over a very real sickness, if we only try!

So how do we train our minds to find that power?

By humbling ourselves and latching on to the instruction, fellowship, and support of the treatment community. We have to train ourselves that in order to truly beat addiction, we must fight it with help. The Big Book mentions the dangers of trying to recover on sheer willpower alone, and warns us to seek help and fellowship from others in recovery. After all, the more people that can help us share our burden, the less weight we’ll all feel like we’re carrying, right?

Humans are inherently social, but we can also be very stubborn and independent. In treatment, we’ve got to coax that social side out and remind ourselves that recovery is a lifelong journey, and unity and fellowship are our companions.

This holiday season is the perfect time to train our minds and to remember the importance of fellowship, unity, and collaboration in recovery!

Thrive Treatment℠ is a premier outpatient addiction treatment program in sunny Santa Monica, California. We help our clients conquer addiction by teaching them how to process and discard the self-defeating thoughts that can often keep them stuck. Call us right now at (888) 975-8474 to get started!

Enjoying a Sober Holiday Season

Enjoying a Sober Holiday Season

For many people, the time right between Thanksgiving and Christmas is the happiest time of the year. Family members are happier, friends are friendlier, and strangers don’t seem as strange. For others, though, the holiday season can be tough. Some of us have lost loved ones, experienced devastation, or just had some rough times during the holidays, and each new year brings with it the pain of the last.

No matter what our mood or what we’ve experienced in the past, it’s important that we do everything in our power to make this holiday season one that’s peaceful, restful, and free from substances.

One of the best ways to enjoy a sober holiday season is to have strategies in place to prepare for it. Attending a session at the treatment center, calling for one more meeting of the alumni  group before a big break, or even scheduling regular calls and checkups with a peer from treatment as the holidays begin to ramp up are all great strategies.

Once the season is upon us, we can keep ourselves busy with fun, stimulating activities and events. Many treatment centers like Thrive Treatment℠ host holiday events where graduates, current clients, and families can come enjoy themselves and share in some good, clean fun. Aside from treatment centers, there are many community centers, churches, and volunteer organizations that participate in all sorts of charity events, fundraisers, and potlucks during the holiday season. Taking part in these would be a great way to meet new people and avoid spending the holidays at home or around the wrong people or places.

Finally, we can enjoy a sober holiday season by avoiding known risks. Certain relatives might not be the best to hang around if they “just can’t help” spiking the eggnog. If office meetings are more like liquor fests, making a quick appearance or not attending at all can nip a potential problem in the bud before it happens. If we’re at a social event, we don’t always have to have a drink in hand. Remember, the bartender may not know we aren’t supposed to be drinking. We don’t want a mere social habit to spell trouble down the road!

The holidays can be a peaceful time for all of us, as long as we know how to enjoy them safely. Remembering the strategies we learn in addiction treatment can help us make the right decisions even when we’re in some compromising situations. Thrive Treatment℠ is an outpatient addiction treatment center in Santa Monica, California that focuses on teaching clients those strategies through innovative methodology. Call us at (888) 975-8474 to see how we can help you today.

Recovery Never Stops: How to Make the Most of Life After Treatment

Recovery Never Stops: How to Make the Most of Life After Treatment

Page 492 of The Big Book starts with a crystal clear assertion of what it means to be free after a life of addiction: “Those events that once made me feel ashamed and disgraced now allow me to share with others how to become a useful member of the human race.”

What is recovery, after all,  if it isn’t the road to becoming a useful member of the human race?

Being free from addiction means much more than no longer having the urge to drink or use drugs. Recovery means even more than being able to make up for past mistakes, make amends with those you’ve hurt, and start a new life free from the bondage of your disease.

Recovery means that you are finally at peace with yourself.

At Thrive Treatment℠, we believe the “treatment” portion of recovery is but one aspect of a much, much larger journey, and we strive to build clients into individuals that are ready to tackle post-treatment recovery with as much gusto as they tackled treatment itself.

Life after treatment may not necessarily be easy. In fact, there may be many times where things seem the exact opposite of easy. However, learning how to apply the strategies you learned in treatment to life afterward can make you a more confident, resilient person that’s ready for anything life throws at you. With the right attitude, every challenge you may face in life after treatment will introduce a new opportunity for you to grow stronger, wiser, and better equipped to conquer whatever comes next.

Making the most of life after treatment

After treatment at any addiction facility, it’s not abnormal for graduates to experience a mix of feelings. How will their family react to them now? What will they do for work? Will they be able to stay sober when there are temptations and stimulations around every corner?

In short, the answers to these questions can be hard. Although many outpatient treatment facilities like Thrive Treatment℠ try their best to prepare clients for their eventual return to the rest of the world, it can still be a shock to find that you are, indeed out on your own.

That’s why the best way to get your feet on the ground is to find residence in a structured sober living, get plugged in with an alumni group, surround yourself with others who will champion your recovery, and remember that the recovery journey is a marathon, not a sprint. Making the most of life after treatment means being able to enjoy life safely and without the temptation of substances, but that journey is just beginning after leaving the treatment center. Patience is key.

Plugging into alumni groups

Here at Thrive Treatment℠, we champion alumni groups because we know just how beneficial a solid and extended connection with peers from treatment can be. As an outpatient facility, we place a premium on motivating our clients to forge lasting connections with people that will inspire them to do more, be more, and make their recovery journey richer and more fulfilling. Addiction recovery is not a solitary endeavor, and the importance of a tribe that motivates and supports one another is huge.

Having an alumni group to turn to after treatment gives you the confidence to step out of your comfort zone and the reassurance that your journey is one that you don’t have to face on your own. There’s a reason that treatment is most effective in a collaborative environment, and why The Big Book suggests the group environment as one of the best and most effective ways to treat a myriad of addictions. In fact, the very description of AA– as a “fellowship of men and
women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other” confirms the power of groups in recovery. Tribes are important, and they work in both treatment and post-treatment to help you make the most out of your process.

Surrounding yourself with the right people

You might have heard a saying similar to this, “You are who you surround yourself with.” This is especially important in life after treatment. Here at Thrive Treatment℠, we help our clients process and defeat the behaviors that hold them down and keep them stuck in addiction and pain. One of those behaviors is often keeping poor company. In many cases, people get hooked on substances at the urging of a friend or colleague they thought had their best interests at heart, only to see later on that that “friend” was nowhere to be found when their support was needed most for recovery.

There’s no room for those kinds of friendships after treatment. Making the most of life after treatment involves being truly discerning about the people we surround ourselves with. While we can’t control every situation life throws at us, we can make sure that we surround ourselves with good people who truly care about us. After making it through addiction and regaining our confidence in treatment, we deserve nothing less than the best relationships we can find.

Finally, patience is key to making the most of life after treatment. As The Big Book expresses, “patience, tolerance, love, and understanding are the watchwords.” Just as patience was key in treatment itself, it is also key in navigating experiences that we may not expect in living life sober. Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither is our recovery. The sooner we realize this, the sooner we can learn to use any mistakes we may make as learning experiences, and grow in the recovery process.

At Thrive Treatment℠ of Santa Monica, California, our outpatient treatment services provide the very best in addiction recovery. If you are suffering from addiction, call us at (888)975-8474 today. Addiction isn’t final. Make the decision to get help today.

“I Don’t Like My Therapist”

“I Don’t Like My Therapist”

There is no one-size-fits-all solution for addiction. If there was, addiction treatment wouldn’t be nearly as nuanced as it is now. One of the most powerful advancements made in addiction treatment since Bill W.’s creation of Alcoholics Anonymous in the 1930s has been the onslaught of new techniques, programs, and plans that cater to different types of addictions all over the planet. No matter what you may be suffering from– or how long you’ve been suffering from it– there’s a treatment plan for you. As The Big Book states, “upon therapy for the alcoholic himself, [there] surely is no monopoly.”

No matter how new or complex the treatment plan is one thing will no doubt remain the same: the concept of personal therapy. Addiction is a mental illness, and personal therapy is an absolute necessity for getting us to the root of our issues which may have led us to addiction in the first place.

You’re going to deal with therapy a lot in addiction treatment, through many different forms. Even at Thrive Treatment℠, an outpatient facility that places a premium on using modern techniques and thinking outside of the box, our clients go through therapy sessions almost every day of the week. We believe that you can’t have a successful addiction treatment program without therapy, so we incorporate it into just about everything we do.

So, what if you aren’t particularly fond of your therapist? Therapists are human too, and they can sometimes make us feel uncomfortable, annoyed, or, quite frankly, angry. It’s natural to experience unpleasant emotions when we’re in situations that require us to peel off scabs and reopen old wounds, and therapy does just that. We know the importance of therapy in recovery, but there has to be some way we can get past our personal feelings in order to make the best of it, right?


Learning to appreciate your therapist

Addiction is a complex illness, and it requires complex strategies in order to defeat it. Therapy is one such strategy, and as long as addiction stays around, so, too, will therapy be here. One of the best ways to learn to appreciate your therapist is to take a closer look at just how important their job is in the recovery process. Even as far back as the 1930s, when the first addiction treatment group was founded, early adopters of the 12-step treatment process and Alcoholics Anonymous held therapists in high esteem, and regarded their skillset as one that was invaluable in addiction treatment: “Psychiatrists and psychologists point out the deep need every human being has for practical insight and knowledge of his own personality flaws and for a discussion of them with an understanding and trustworthy person.”

Therapists provide us with the strategies we need in order to look inside of ourselves and make the changes, address the hurt, and identify the spiritual maladies that caused us to start and continue using substances, even against our better judgment, in the first place. Without therapists, treatment wouldn’t be effective. Sure, nurses could assist us in the detoxification process and facility staff could ensure we didn’t use any substances while in their care, but the mental portion of our illness would be largely untouched without the care that therapists provide, and we’d likely fall into the same traps soon after leaving treatment.

It isn’t personal

It’s also important to remember that addiction treatment therapists, like the rest of the treatment staff, have a very specific role to play in treatment, and it’s one that requires impartiality, strategy, and empathy above all else. Many therapists have gone through treatment themselves, or have been in similar situations as us, and it’s these experiences that they rely on to guide discussions and activities. Our therapists don’t have a personal vendetta against us. They’re simply there to help us get better. As The Big Book states, “God has abundantly supplied this world with fine doctors, psychologists, and practitioners of various kinds.” They are trained to equip us with the tools we need to recover from our illness, but it is up to us to heed their suggestions if we want to see any results. Sometimes, the only way to grow and develop in addiction treatment is to let our guard down and open ourselves up to receiving help from others.

Not liking your therapist is no excuse to stop yourself from getting the help you deserve. Therapists are only interested in doing one thing: helping you process and discard the self-defeating thoughts and behaviors that kept you stuck in addiction. The processes they take you through in order to do this are not all easy, and many may touch a raw nerve (or ten), but going through the fire is the only way you’ll be able to identify your flaws and impurities and come out even better on the other side. If addiction treatment was easy, we’d all be able to do it ourselves, right?

At  Thrive Treatment℠ (and many other addiction treatment facilities) there are often a number of different types of therapy offered. From art therapy and daily group sessions to multi-family therapy and individual therapy options, there are plenty of options for even the most skeptical of clients. All therapy options may not appeal to you, but you are bound to find some therapists, strategies, and therapeutic activities that you’ll gravitate towards, and it’s important that you do your absolute best to make the most out of all you’re presented with.

If you are suffering from addiction, it is never too late for help. At Thrive Treatment℠ of Santa Monica, our specialists know just what you need in order to make a complete 180 and get back on the right track. Call us at (888)975-8474 today!