The traditional 12-Step programs are not for everyone. I applaud anything that helps people overcome addictions, and while the 12-steps certainly have saved millions of lives, there are alternative treatments. I respectfully disagree with the first step: “I am powerless over alcohol (cigarettes, drugs, sex, food, etc.).” Indeed, I believe that there is nothing more powerful than human thought. Look at the placebo and the nocebo effects. A placebo is a neutral substance (e.g., a sugar tablet) that suggests relief, and delivers it because the patient believes that it has power. A nocebo, on the other hand, is a harmless substance that produces harmful effects due to one’s negative expectations or psychological underpinnings. Our beliefs are everything. They can allow us to override any addictions or keep us stuck in those undesirable behaviors.
Addiction Hypnotherapy has helped scores of addicts who prefer an alternative to standard addictions treatment. Remember, hypnotherapy can never make one do anything he/she does not want to do. Unfortunately, if you want your son or wife to stop using, hypnosis will not work unless the addict wants to heal. When the addict is ready, hypnosis can align the addict’s subconscious programming with his/her conscious choice to be free from the addictions. The patient has a choice of giving up substance use completely or to downscale use to a manageable level. While I will never endorse the use of illicit drugs, I will work with patients to moderate their use of legal drugs (alcohol, cigarettes, marijuana) if that is their goal versus complete abstinence.
Maybe you are simply uncomfortable in a group setting such as AA (Alcoholics Anonymous), SA (Sexaholics Anonymous) or NA (Narcotics Anonymous) or OA (Overeaters Anonymous) or the scores of other 12-step programs. Maybe you have tried one and it did not work for whatever reason. Maybe you need complete anonymity. Maybe hypnosis is the ideal alternative for your addiction.
I am proud to be on staff at Seasons Recovery Center in Malibu as a primary therapist and hypnotherapist. Seasons offers the finest inpatient and outpatient care for those seeking recovery from alcohol and substance abuse.
Click here for my mention in a recent feature in Fortune magazine: