How To Stop Drinking – How To Stop Drinking Alcohol – 30 Day No Alcohol

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good morning good evening good afternoon everybody out there in podcast land you are in tune to another episode of intrinsic motivation from a homies perspective this is Hamza and I am David and I’m excited about our guest today because over the last year and a half we’ve had several podcasters come on in different areas of the country they’ve been talking a lot about I mean who hasn’t but they’ve been we’ve been covering this opioid epidemic we’ve been talking about addiction a lot overcoming it in different ways to approach that and I know one of the biggest push backs with regards to rehabilitation is that it’s a revolving door you’re just going to go through the process and then you’re going to wind up on your old behavior and so the guest today he is actually certified in psychiatry he does telehealth medicine so I’m really excited about that and he’s going to talk about recovery and just the joy of recovery is actually the name of his book it’s the 12-step the new 12 step guide to recovery from addiction and so he has a different approach that he’s going to do it I’m sure you guys are going to love it because there is a ton of intrinsic motivation in it as well which we love so without further adue like to welcome dr. Michael McKee to the podcast oh hello hello nice good nice to be speaking with you yeah absolutely I think thanks for making the call and so yeah I want to go ahead and dive right in I mean with with your credentials I mean I noticed that you he’s graduated from Stanford you’ve been in this field for some time so I’d love to get your opinion on the current state of recovery from addiction as you see it well you know addiction is a given a severe illness is your severe chronic illness for which lifetime recovery rates are be not the same as for other chronic illnesses maybe even better than illnesses like diabetes and a congestive heart failure and asthma it’s an element where you really have people have episodes and flare-ups of their rejection and then a mentor is the remission and I think what making progress actually is the field treatment does work it doesn’t work 100% all the time for everybody but over time people do gradually get better for the most part if they’re willing to to work on their recovery it like other chronic illnesses they have a behavioral component like diabetes or congestive heart it really lifestyle changes and really doing what you need to do in terms of how you live your life is a critical part of recovering from addiction now in your just looking at your credentials you finished your finish in 1985 at Stanford University School of Medicine and in 85 there was a huge epidemic at the time with cocaine and crack and you know fast forward all these years later the epidemic with with opioid addiction and heroin addiction are there any similarities of what you’re seeing from men versus now when you were fresh into the industry you know there’s really opioid epidemic which has occurred since I got since I graduated to medical school and primarily caused by drug companies that were pushing opioids as Weah panacea for pain without really educating prefers about the long term highly addictive consequences of opioids for treating chronic pain and wheeler and so opioids have been prescribed freely by physicians for the past 20 to 30 years roughly and as a result of that about 6 to 12 percent of everybody who is given the prescription for opioids developed in opioid use disorder or opioid addiction so we’re really seeing an epidemic of opioid addiction as a result of in part from over prescribing of opioids now in we’ve had gets from Arizona and from Florida which are two states that were hit pretty extremely hard with regards to the pill mills and I am unfamiliar with if you guys were experiencing the same thing there where you said it’s prescribed by physicians initially but then they have the pill mills that that sprout up all over the state are you guys experiencing the same thing out there yeah I’m having a little hard time hearing good is the voice is a little bit garbled say that again I’m sorry sure no problem oh okay are you there are you there right I wonder if we yeah yeah it’s a garbled connection unfortunately I’m wondering if we should start over again mm-hmm okay um I think Homs is just skywrite having all these technical problems which means you don’t I think I I think the whole dog you getting ready to call back in Hamza okay so he was talking about the pill mills the ones that kind of were in like Florida and Arizona and he was just wondering were you experiencing that that kind of thing out in California are you familiar with the pill mills yeah yeah not so much that seems to be more of a Florida phenomenon but I have updated over nationwide up there there there there tends to be over prescribing of opioids it’s getting better California Medical Board and other medical boards are are attempting to educate physicians and state physicians more aware of the risk of addiction with opioids so we’re starting to see a leveling out of the amount of overdose deaths and hopefully we may see a gradual decrease in in opioid addiction over the next ten years in part due to hopefully tighter prescribing practices hmm nothing Hamzah got back pain are you back in Hamza okay he’s still China well I want you know I know house it has questions you like to ask one of the questions I want to ask is is it in all your studies before someone let’s say you know becomes addicted to whatever that might be is there anything that you could upon meeting someone that you just immediately recognize that this person that personality trait is more conducive to being addicted than maybe some another type of personality or than just all across them you know if you have a history of other addictions let’s say to cigarettes or to alcohol or a cocaine or or some other addiction or if there’s history of addiction in your family that puts you at increased risk of addiction piggybacking that you HMDA oh yeah go for it sorry about that yeah so that food she ate it resistant so I guess I was talking maybe more like let’s say someone who it wasn’t and maybe he didn’t have a strong personality and they’re always maybe kind of following the crowd type personality or just trying to to fit in and they don’t you know having maybe a strong sense of self someone maybe like that maybe besides all you know having a family and another things someone kind of like that may be more prone to one becoming an addict yeah I think I think I think you’re right that if somebody low self-esteem and that makes them more vulnerable to peer pressure so if you have low self-esteem or sensitive to whether you’re accepted or rejected by your peers and if you even negative peer group a drug-using peer group then you’re going to be more lead to to be vulnerable to addiction abuse by virtue of your your being more influenced by your your peer group I think you’re making a good point yeah yeah reason I brought in that Oh cuz I I’ve seen that before and it’s like just always kind of interesting watching these people who to be out you like you said low self esteem and it they just they’re going in a direction where they just need to like they belong and if that particularly group that they’re belonging is doing destructive behavior or then that’s where they’re going is disruptive behavior yeah it’s really true I mean if you think about it if this is why I think there’s so much more addiction in impoverished crime-ridden areas because the negative social pressures and and the negative peer influence there’s so much greater than if you’re living in a more well-to-do area and if you have a really happy family with strong social bonds and you’re you’re healthy and you have good self-esteem and you have really healthy friends you’re going to be less vulnerable negative peer influences that are going to you know to influence you towards using these new drugs yeah yeah well along those lines I can regain last night there was a documentary that was released in New York and they were highlighting John Coit who was known as he was it was the first worldwide recognized male model and so you know he’s doing a lot of photo shoots all over the world and he’s with Cindy Crawford and all the top models of that day and everyone thought you know you had the world by in the palm of his hand little did they know he was he was in a cult he was like an end of the world you know doomsday cult you’re like how could he you know he’s his family summered every you know every summer at Nantucket and they were well-to-do he was a Harvard graduate you’re like well how did he wind up in that circumstance so I was just wondering like he said with the numbers yeah you may have under underserved sexes of the population but are there underlying themes that people can be aware of that so it doesn’t come as a surprise across the board you know shit all the glitters is not gold right so some setting people with a lot and wealth and money they may look great on the inside but they’re some of them are a little bit first like e-trade they may look very pretty on the outside but they may be empty empty on the inside so I really I think it’s really interesting is because really true happiness and fulfillment event really protect you from addiction aren’t really rooted in fame or money they’re true happiness and fulfillment are rooted in things like meaningful loving connections intimacy a sense of being connected to something greater than yourself a sense of having a higher meaning and purpose that it brings you joy and fulfillment that’s so good that you just you don’t feel the need to for anything more you don’t need to a dick for something more because life is too good to give up the way that it is so we will get surprised by these celebrities who fall prey to addiction but but it really you have to look more deeply on the inside it’s sort of the spiritual and psychological nature there of their lives to really to really determine you know their vulnerability to addiction because along those lines I would think of you know like you said there’s that spiritual tap on your shoulder when you know you’re doing something wrong like when you were child and you’re about the steal some cookies from the cookies are something told you not to do it right and so right extreme example we’re talking addiction so there is there’s a stigma and so they’re hiding it for the moat you know that’s why we’re talking about all that glitters with in gold and then family members are you know everyone’s taken aback because you thought you were always checking in with them you spent a lot of time with them then you felt on the surface or maybe below the surface that they were happy and they were fulfilled little did you know all these years later that they have a problem right exactly and you know Fame has a way of causing sort of this narcissistic build up of a persona that you have to keep up an image and and it can lead to to this sort of a sense of inauthenticity where you’re really not you’re not being truly who you are and being truly real with with a set of trusted intimate because in a way your fame can get in the way of that and so it’s ironic that that can actually increase your vulnerability to addiction I think by creating that sense of disconnection and emptiness and inauthenticity now back then and 90 there there was I guess you would say an arm’s length between us regular Joe’s and celebrities but now you can kind of touch them right by social media virtually and so there’s a lot of narcissistic behavior across the board so I mean from teenagers on to adults that you would think would get past that at least through the addiction its since we’re talking about addiction of that tension attention or lack of attention are you seeing parallels with with online media and with drug and alcohol addiction you know I’m not I’m not aware of that it’s a really you’re very insightful incredibly interesting question but I haven’t seen any any data on that so I just don’t know oh no worries it’s how do people I’ve kind of approaching it from how does that person get into that scenario and there’s a lot of cases and we’re seeing it on online too you know everything’s there’s there’s no filter anymore so we’re seeing celebrities we’re seeing neighbors what have you and like you said if I deal like on the outside but inside there’s a lot of turmoil so I hate to be the more of a prevention instead of treatment as if you would look at it that way of instead of reacting to this maybe seeing if there’s some red flags that we can be aware of before they get further down yeah and adults you know I I think what you’re touching on which is which again is incredibly insightful is that there is a socio-cultural context in which addiction occurs and some society to have higher rates of addiction that others I think the United States has a higher rate of addiction to many areas because we really are a narcissistic culture in which there’s the idea that somehow through being special we achieve our Worth and our value as human beings and being special can be being beautiful rich famous a powerful talented and there’s this there’s this lot loss of the sense of being precious and valuable because we are useful to others but instead we seek our meaning and our value and our word through being special to others rather than useful to others and I think it’s toxic I think that it is a talking dynamic that is poisoning our culture and and it’s exacerbated by social media if you look at social media it’s one of the most inauthentic places that there is and everybody is doing great and everybody is special and wonderful it just it’s just not real and it is actually depressing in a way if you’re suffering and you’re hurting in you’re in pain and truly everybody is suffering and hurting and painted in ways at times you really that doesn’t get reflected in social media so there’s this real pressure that I think makes people feel badly about themselves and in that and then addiction is really sort of a pain management solution where people numb pain with pleasure where you numb pain with pleasure rather than resolving pain in love based ways and and the increased pain of living in the society because it is so narcissistic narcissism promoting I think increases that that that push to numb payment pleasure and in particular I want to also include food food addiction we have a growing obesity epidemic in this country and I think that that is also something that’s being contributed to by our culture yeah along those lines I have asked about dual diagnosis and are you finding that with custom with not customers but people that you deal with as well as far as that it may it may start out as a food addiction and then grow as it are there don’t wait you know it’s funny dual diagnosis is a funny term if you think about it it’s kind of like addictions are just one of many psychiatric illnesses there’s addictions there’s mood disorders there’s anxiety disorders there’s there psychotic disorder there’s impulse control disorders there’s all there’s trauma related disorders there’s all sorts of psychiatric disorders which addictions are just one set of psychiatric disorders but if somebody comes into you with depression and anxiety we don’t say that they are dual diagnosis because they have depression anxiety we say that they have depression anxiety so the way I think about it with patients who suffer from addiction is that they have addictions and other psychiatric illnesses and the fact is that about I would say about 7080 percent of people who suffer from addiction also suffer from some other psychiatric illness or trauma one or the other so it’s actually more the rule to have more than one one psychiatric difficult even than to just have one it’s actually the have just an addiction with no other no other problems that’s a good point because I wanted to see your opinion of decades ago generations ago you may have gone the war for one or two years and today they’re doing multiple tours so they’re coming back with those trauma disorders and then it’s overlapping with coping so that leads to drug and alcohol addiction exactly any kind of pain will increase the vulnerability to addiction so it could be the pain of PTSD it could be the pain of bipolar disorder could be the pain of depression or anxiety any kind of pain will increase that urge to feel good now by numbing that obtained with the pleasure inducing substances so yeah you’re making a good point that really people with PTSD and other psychiatric illnesses are more vulnerable than we did dr. McGee you know historically when people I think think of addiction they’re always thinking of you know something regards to you know drugs or gambling or drinking or sex or whatever but how much just in you know more studies are you starting to see more and more people addicted to or coming to you with addictions to the tech and computers and all that because that’s more you know all that’s new so to speak compared to you know 30 40 50 years again whatever yeah yeah we don’t have a formal diagnosis for it yet just like we don’t have a formal diagnosis for food addiction but I do I do see more and more technology addiction and I think that that’s going to be a growing problem for our society in the years to come yeah cuz we while back we had a gentleman on who he is he went through it had a porn addiction you know you know he is married and kids but he was at night getting on this computer and he just that was you know it was just growing growing because it’s just so rid of readily available on the internet and and he went on to say that he knew people that you know there’s teenagers and whatnot that they’re are so addicted to porn they don’t even know how to relate to the opposite sex because that’s just you know how how they’ve been getting you know been getting that is do the computers and whereas you know when I was growing up you know it was just more you know the traditional path of you know meeting the opposite sex in school or whatever you dating all that but they don’t like they don’t even know how to relate to to the opposite sex just because of that addiction yeah everything I studied was trying to be done on some young college males on connected pornography on their psychology in their relationships and they wanted to have a group people who of young men who had never been exposed to pornography and a group who have been exposed to pornography and compare the two groups and they had to cancel the study because they couldn’t find any young men who had not been exposed to pornography it’s just very very rampant and it really is a problem because Nog Rafi is so readily available now if you if you do a keyword search on the top keywords that are searched in Google you’ll keep it among the top 20 keywords about half of them or pornography related lengths so I do think that sex addiction is is really is really rampant and I do think that the access of pornography increases the availability and exposure to to to you know to stimulate it that can cultivate a sex addiction and I think you’re right if you if you spend your time objectifying women in that way then you’re really not thinking how to have sex in the context of a loving mutual relationship in and some people have different opinions about the virtue or vice or device aspects of pornography but I do think that the pornography has a corroding effect on our ability to to to basically paint sex in the context of a loving relationship yeah I think you’ll like this book if you haven’t gotten it on audible that I mean there’s a hard copy and soft copy on Amazon as well it’s called a butterfly effect and so they had talked to the person that owns honest I think it’s pornhub and he took the model he was explaining how it came to be today and he was using the model of YouTube and that if we make it free then you know it’ll be readily available and then he didn’t know how the butter from the hence the butter fire effect of how it affected so many people and in recent years I mean it’s the company making so much money because here it’s free but in places like Russia they they charge for was it for membership and so you also have to sign up like some kind of disclaimer so about the government knows that you just take a track that you’re you’re on that so if there’s some deviant behavior down the line they can associate your online of behavior with actually in acting at it in real that’s interesting and I’m in the online space and so for our regular folks they know PPC as pay-per-click but the real money on the Internet is the real PPC which is porn pills and casino it’s it’s a whole nother world yeah right right yeah with those in that line I do want to ask you a technology question as well because as I was mentioning before with drug addiction that they’re traditionally you would go or have a dealer you know and with technology you can go on the dark web and use Bitcoin and it comes to your house so there’s a whole group of children I think they they highlighted someone in Colorado a teenager who had overdosed on fit now that he had purchased on the on the dark web so I was just wondering if you’re seeing an increase of addiction related issues with the with younger adults that typically wouldn’t have gone across town to get drugs because it’s delivered to their front door now you know I’ve read about this dark web phenomenon and we have had a few patients admitted to the Haven where I work here in San Luis Obispo who obtained their drug by the web and what’s really insidious about it is that the drugs are our ship Zod collect on delivery and the they’re being targeted by these dealer pushers who will call their victims and ask them if they need more you know drugs and then we’ll send them to them so we’re actually seeing the same kind of dealer pusher phenomenon going on online through dot with dark leg web activities that we see on the street corners in in cities it’s really really a malignant force yeah I’m in the Big Brother Big Sister program so my little is what I was with him since he was 7 so he’s 16 now and I remember this was years ago but when he listens to laughs but I was asking him about it was around 2011 maybe and I was like yeah Facebook and he’s like nobody listens we don’t get on Facebook that’s for old people right like young kids are always on something new and so you have parents that are used to following them around or using different apps to kind of track their children through Instagram or snapchat or what-have-you but they’ve moved on to something else or they’re using apps that look like flashlights and then when you click on the flashlight it’s a whole new social media site so I was just wondering because you’re going to go those darn kids with the ingenuity but I was just wondering on your side if you could share like some secrets or something that that they’re using that the masses don’t know about yet oh that’s a good question I really don’t know at the age of 60 I’m not quite as doing these younger generation things as somebody somebody younger than myself I see it I see people presenting to the clinic with with technology addictions I have technology addiction patients in my private practice and I see patients who are getting drugs by the internet because there’s so much more accessible that way so these are really really the issue of access is really critical if you suffer from alcohol use disorder and you have alcohol in your home you’re going to be more likely to give in to compulsion to cravings to a dick the alcohol because you have it in your home if you have ready access through your computer screen to fentanyl or to phenobarbital or other addictive drugs it’s just going to make it that much easier to to come to compulsions and cravings predict yeah I think that would be issue with one of our other guests and especially in Florida they and I think that the they had covered this on sixty minutes as well you haven’t you had one of fishin even like seventy pills a day and with a straight face he liked that person needed it and so people were going to their traditional physician and it was less for argument’s sake saying it was a hundred dollars for it’s a prescription and then they would go to the pill mill and it would be fifty dollars and we’re and I’m seeing that with the dark web it’s not even mean some of its coming from the US but it’s worldwide and so they can get that once one hundred dollar prescription for pennies on the dollar so it’s like what you said that it’s not only access but it’s so inexpensive to get the barrier to entry solo yes oh that’s a really good point yeah yeah the less expensive it is the more the more easier it is to be able to afford more pills and and really fuel the addiction that’s a good point I did want to ask you because I’m always nostalgic of days that I’d missed in set parents when my my elders always telling about and there was a time where your doctor always came by the house so he did doctors on call and things like that there’s been a resurgence of it a little bit in some pockets that I see across the country and I know that you do a bit of telehealth if you could talk a little bit about what that actually is and what’s the difference between doing telehealth versus coming in and getting treatment one-on-one so I started doing telepsychiatry when I moved from Massachusetts to California and I continued to treat many of my Massachusetts patients and what I do is I use a HIPAA compliant video conferencing platform the one that I use is called VC Vee as or vsee BC and I have a business associate agreement with them for HIPAA compliance and basically what I’ve been surprised and this may not be surprising to you but once I started seeing patients by videoconferencing many of my patients said to me my god dr. McGee why didn’t you do this years ago this is so much better than driving through the traffic for an hour to sit in the waiting for 20 minutes to see you and then drive home an hour I can do this from the comfort of my living room this is so fantastic thank you so much so I’m really surprised it the most of my patients actually prefer videoconferencing it if you did clinical outcome studies on videoconferencing pretty much the outcome show that your clinical efficacy your treatment outcomes are comparable from when you see somebody in person versus when you see them on a on a on a business conference platform there are some limitations you cannot prescribe controlled substances to a patient unless you’ve seen them in person there’s a Ryan hate Act which was enacted by Congress that really limits that so if somebody is going to need a controlled Bayesian they really have to be seen in person first and the second thing is you can’t do a physical exam you can’t check time so for patients for example who I’m treating for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder or I would want to check their vitals lines there has to be some alternative way of doing that that physical assessment if I’m going to treat them by videoconferencing there are some other precautions I have patients send me a copy of their license to confirm their identity or some other photo ID and have them send me a copy of a piece of mail confirming their address it’s very important with these sessions that you confirm the location of the patient it’s just in case there’s any kind of emergency because say somebody is suicide for so say that they have a medical emergency let’s say a heart attack or some and that these rare rare things that can happen you need to know their location so that if you call 9-1-1 you can tell them where to go to help the patient but other than those limitations in many ways videoconferencing is it saves patients time and money and and and is much more convenient for them so for many patients videoconferencing is really superior to seeing a psychiatrist or a therapist in person I’m always reminded by my California brethren when I complain about traffic in Atlanta they’re like well you haven’t been to California traffic so I think sky area in Southern California have very heavy traffic exactly exactly so what’s your take with anos CBS and there’s some other I think it’s Walgreens they’re starting to introduce that connect with a doctor for $49 or something like that where they’ll do a televideo or some type of video conference to determine if they should see that person in person or not are are you seeing similar relationships with addiction that you’re partnering with these these other outlets like you said you can’t make a prescription until they’re face to face but I didn’t know if there are any partnerships and orgs you know no but I do think that my vision for addiction treatment going forward it is really exactly what you’re saying is collaboration partnerships and leveraging technology there’s a huge role for technology to play in enhancing addiction treatment outcomes we’re partnering with the company right now called we connect and we connect is a great mobile application to help support recovery routines and and and support engaging with recovery supports and I really encourage anybody if you’re suffering from an addiction really looking to we connect as a way of enhancing your recovery there’s a great technology and there’s another company that’s doing online cognitive behavioral therapy for addiction called CBT for CBT and that that has been shown to have superior outcomes to in-person cognitive behavioral therapy so I really seeing in a medical move in that direction I think the other thing that I we’re seeing an emergence of it and that I’m personally very interested in is a use of online teaching and training for recovery teaching recovery and and relapse prevention skills creating management skills there’s a free online group called smart recovery Smar T recovery that has behavioral resources and an online meetings that are people who aren’t able to drive or who maybe have anxiety problems and can’t go to in-person meetings there’s online forum called in the room which is also available for providing online support so technology is not all that and and I think that um delivering technology and leverage partnerships with technology providers and other treatment providers it’s really the future collaborative integrated care that’s technology assisted is really the future of addictions treatment so you’re excited with the commercials with with Facebook introducing their new portal that’s associated with with ant was it Alexa and now you can kind of do look around the whole room instead of just being right in front of the computer and that way I guess the person you’re dealing with can’t hide anything in the background and you know just keep that smile on their face when they’re face to face but with the portal it actually does like a panoramic view oh that’s really interesting yeah I think they’re doing heavy promote it was a national promotion but they’re doing heavy promotion here but you know just get in time for for the holiday season so I’m sure Black Friday though so introduce it on a national scale Wow very interesting we live in an interesting time don’t we well you got a lit it’s all perception you could say oh the world well let’s say it go on the hell in a handbasket burning up but I’m being respectful since you’re in California but yeah it’s all perspective it’s like it’s half sunny or half cloudy depending on how you look at it the other side that I want to ask is I want to get your take on because everything from a learning from a learning perspective there are some people that like to read there are some people I like to actually hold a physical paper or a newspaper and there are some people that actually can learn better in groups so I was just wondering how you determine what’s the better approach individual one-on-one versus a group recovery you know it really is down to in terms of my practice it’s really trying to assess a person’s preferences and their needs and and sort of blending needs with preferences so for example if somebody has a problem with relationships because let’s say B was neglected or they grew up in a very dramatic environment and and they and they really have a hard time forming safe healthy relationships then you actually recommended something like that to baby in the long term group therapy process group therapy where they can learn to have healthy relationships so it’s kind of that delicate balance of assessing a person’s need and then also honoring their preferences you know in your book you talk about how people that are in addiction they they put the relief of the stress before their self-love and in recovery you know you say self-love comes before we leap of distress how do you get people to switch that to where you know self-love is the priority you know it really is it really is first of all helping people to understand that love is a better way then then then then the immediate gratification in a way that it ends up harming you in the long run which is addiction is really about you know resolving payment with harmful gratification whereas recovery is about resolving pain with love based interventions that reduce in your increase the ability to bear pain in ways that enhance your wellbeing long-term so it’s really helping people to really see very clearly that the addiction is a way that works almost but not quite and that actually makes things worse in the long run and most people wake up to that it’s really about helping them to see that there’s a better way and with that we really teach people about for example connecting to others to get help and to get support learning meditation learning mindfulness learning how to practice mindful acceptance with this dress learning how behavioral ways of maybe rethinking and putting things into better perspective but looking for all negative cognitive distortions and and changing the way that people think through mindful monitoring monitoring their thinking reducing stress through behavioral self-soothing activities like going for a walk in nature or you know getting massage or just just being good to yourself you know I teach my patient you really if you’re suffering from addiction you and the say that you would never love skilfully or well growing up you want to be your own best ideal parent and you want to treat yourself if you were your own sacred cherished child it’s really adopting that stand in that attitude and taking responsibility accountability for your life your well-being that it’s so critical to make that switch in order to be in recovery I have a question with regards to dad and it’s more of an awareness question so I’m assuming you’re the expert so you help me out here I’m assuming that a person comes to you and says well you know I didn’t have stuff loved growing up and I’ve adopted narcissistic behavior that sounds more like an awareness versus I don’t know why I keep repeating these patterns and I’m coming to you to help me out yeah I think that one of the keys to recovery is developing would I the three stools of what I call an insightful compassionate and accountable narrative of yourself in your life that’s really really critical and it’s really important to understand that that we evolved to become the people we are for really good and powerful reasons that are really beyond us none of us chooses our genes none of us chooses our childhood none of us chooses our brains none of us chooses to develop the disease of addiction none of us chooses much of the trauma that occurs to us when we’re growing up so we really need to have a very self compassion and deep understanding of how it how it was that we came to be who we are I think from a mindfulness perspective I think the other thing is to really not take our brains personally I think a lot of people beat up on themselves because of the thoughts and feelings that they have in the urges they have and they experience tremendous shame and and if it’s a black of self worth and self hatred or feeling empty or broken and that’s just really symptoms of a broken brain and it’s nothing really the people choose it’s nothing really to be taken personally we are accountable for our actions and we have control over our attitude and we have control over what we pay attention to those are the only three things that we have control over is what we attend to our attitude and our actions just those three things and so if taking that kind of stance which is very much of a mindfulness rooted stance it really creates the space for self compassion and self acceptance but at the same time paradoxically combined with accountability I know I didn’t choose that but that feeling I didn’t choose the way that my brain works but I do have a choice over what I do in this moment and I do have a choice over the attitude that I take towards the reality that I’m experiencing right now and I think it’s a practice recovery as a practice it’s really a neuromodulatory practice of repetition over and over again consistently and continuously over a lifetime of positive ways of being positive ways of seeing and positive ways of doing being seeing and doing through repetition the Pettitte of practice based in mindfulness it really leaves healing recovery and I have a historical question since you’re on the East Coast and now in the West that historically the East Coast Ben you know the founding fathers it’s been English more old-school old tradition way of doing things versus the west coast which was historically go west young man it’s exploratory and today we have conversations like you’re saying or topics like mindfulness and things like that I was just wondering how has this approach accepted amongst your peers that are more so used to the traditional way of treatment see that again I’m so sorry I missed you sure is there a difference it may not even be a difference anymore but you don’t really hear a traditional classically trained doctor talking about mindfulness and things like that it’s more this is our treatment this the way things are done and you’re covering it from a holistic standpoint I was just wondering is that the way the industry is going or are you seeing this more so on the west coast or is it being accepted Oh nationwide you know say I develop my treatment approach in the 30 years of my practice of the addiction psychiatrist in Massachusetts so I was in eighth closed and I really develop my approach towards treating addictions so I’m not really cleaning a left left coast right coast a difference personally I know that historically California has been seen is more of a new-agey leftist progressive place but I think that mindfulness mindfulness based approaches to healing and recovery are sweeping the nation from left to right and right to left I really don’t see much of a geographical difference now there may be less of these approaches perhaps I don’t know but I would speculate or wonder if there’d be less of these approaches and but they the south with Midwestern or rural areas perhaps but I really just don’t know no it’s great you don’t you hear it some people that we’ve spoken with sometimes there are some Geographic or can demographic preferences so I was just wondering from from your standpoint and also on another note I wanted to know the process when you introduce your book is it part of the process or it’s more of an introductory get to learn more about me and then people go through the traditional process to work with you to work with me I have a small private practice the bulk of my work is chief medical officer at a haven at Pismo which is in Arroyo Grande Grover Beach California and so that most of my work is true patients who come into our addiction treatment center I also have a website well my comm where patients can learn more about my practice and and register to see me individually so that’s that sort of in addition to that I’m doing speaking engagements and to help you know spread the word of recovery and that that’s where that makes up the whole of my professional life right now nice so that that kind of goes back to another technology question and I remember when the market did a correction back in 2008 and most people like me that were road warriors were relegated to staying at the office and so with videoconferencing there was a huge uptick and people were conducting conferences online and I was wondering if you’re if you’re seeing speaking engagements or getting asked to speak virtually in addition to hitting the pavement they say that I am so sorry so my worries I was just wondering from a speaking engagement standpoint if you’re doing virtual well speeches versus funny in addition to speaking in person yeah I’m actually working to develop some live my broadcast with a colleague of mine right now to be able to do some some speaking over live broadcasts I’m very excited about moving in that direction and I’m also wanting to work on doing some online video conference recovery cooking recovery mentoring of to online groups so it’s it’s funny that you say that because I’m actually in the process of working to move in that faction in my practice nice nice yeah it is a great time to be alive for sure especially from a technology standpoint and in the fact that you’re what you’re running across people that are screaming out for help even if they don’t know it so the fact that you’re able to reach them and like you said in some of these communities forearms your upcoming live broadcasts you can touch them in many other places where traditionally you could not the technology is just amazing the potential of it it’s valuable to it just has to be used wisely like it’s like a chainsaw chainsaw can do beautiful things but it can really hear you if you grab the wrong end of it I think technology is at some point now this is actually encouraging especially in the realm of dealing with addiction with everything that’s happening and you’re seeing you’ve come along you’ve seen so much over the years that there are some things that continue to work that are evergreen and there’s things that you continue to tweak to make the make the situation better for people seeking treatment yeah thank you I do want to have you talk a little bit more about your book before we head out where they can get it I’ve seen tons of great reviews so highly vouch for the book and where they can get in touch with you for future contact sure the joy really is for sale on Barnes and noble.com and also amazon.com a pinko version is free and the neck version is free so it’s also available as an audiobook so those are the ways to get the book if you want to learn more about me and look at other recovery resources you can just go to the joy of recovery calm the joy of recovery calm or dr. michael mckean dr michael mcgee calm and there’s more resources on recovery there so some of those like the smart recovery in the room and the others who talked about they can find them on the joy of recovery as well actually smart recovery i would google smart recovery or i would google in the room to get directly to those recovery resources not it’s great and you’ve been a great resource it was a pleasure speaking with you it’s been another episode of intrinsic motivation from a homies perspective this is hamza and i am david dr. McGee it was a pleasure let’s definitely stay in touch the pleasure was all mine god bless you bokken and and wish the best is also here thank you bye thanks again for checking out another episode of intrinsic motivation from our homies perspective podcast please check us out on our website at intrinsic motivation dot life where you can click on the speak pipe button and leave any suggestions for a future podcast that you’d like us to cover also check us out on our social media sites we have a YouTube channel Facebook page iTunes podcast in addition to stitcher and Google Play all under intrinsic motivation from a homeys perspective check you out next time have a great day



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