How We Are Different

Motivation Enhancement

We use a number of Motivation Enhancement methods, both within our normal treatment programs and as separate sessions geared specifically at improving one’s resolve.

Individual counseling in Motivation Enhancement therapy for people who are considering treatment for drug or alcohol use, who may be uncertain about making that decision.
Motivational techniques to keep group members focused on their goals in the face of urges and triggers.
A group for alumni who may be experiencing an internal debate about whether or not to continue with sobriety (or who may be experiencing an internal debate about whether or not to use).

Methods used during the Intensive Outpatient program:

During the course of treatment, it is common for people to have wavering resolve about their decision to quit using drugs or alcohol. Any major life change comes with uncertainty, and people may question their decisions. Motivation Enhancement encourages people to remember all the reasons for seeking treatment, and reclaim the goals they may have lost track of when their use escalated.

We help people to address the areas in their lives that were affected by their use, and to recognize how those areas will change with the absence of substances. Group members are encouraged to reflect on their decision to stop using. By being in the group setting, sharing common struggles, examining their progress, and re-engaging with their values, people are able to strengthen their resolve and commitment to lead a life free of alcohol or drugs.

Individual Counseling

Many people with a drug or alcohol problem have mixed feelings about whether or not to quit. This can be one of the most difficult and dangerous times for people who are considering entering a recovery program. People can struggle with the decision to quit for months or even years. Ambivalence can prevent people from taking control of their problem in its early stages, allowing it to progress to middle or late stage addiction, when there is no choice but to quit if one wants to live.

We use motivation enhancement to help people clarify what they want without pressure to quit. This therapy technique can help guide clients toward a plan for their lives. We create an in-depth plan with our clients, and motivation enhancement is a multi-step process, which generally lasts three to six sessions. While some find a plan quickly, we work with each client on an individual basis for as long as it takes to create a satisfactory strategy.

Our therapists excel in helping to identify goals, and evaluate how alcohol or drug use affects these goals. We help the individual to create a clear, focused plan. Often a decision is made to cut down to a specific level of use, other times the decision is made to stop completely in order to best achieve goals. In either case, it is far more effective to create a plan in a structured way with the help of a professional than to try to make these decisions on one’s own.

Resolve Enhancement Intensive

The Resolve Enhancement Intensive is intended to help current group members and alumni to renew their commitment to living a substance-free life. Ongoing support for abstinence remains important for continued sobriety. For those not getting as much support as they need, their resolve to maintain sobriety may diminish. Months or years after completing a treatment program, some find they begin to battle with the decision to remain alcohol or drug free for the long term. During treatment many decide on the goal of lifelong abstinence, but after being away from the support of the group thoughts of using again may return. The Resolve Enhancement Intensive is a series of 4 or more weekly group meetings, focused on helping group members get themselves back on track with their long-term goals.

Making the decision whether or not to enter a treatment program, or to work toward lifelong abstinence is difficult, and we strive to help people in understanding their options and making the best choices for themselves. We help to keep people working toward their goals, and keeping themselves on track. Whether or not you are certain about making this decision, you may benefit from meeting with a counselor to discuss your goals and make a plan to reach them.

“The combination of structured and flexible group environment was great—the understanding and flexibility of the counselor (and program) which allowed incorporation of real life needs with the group needs.”

— Female, 41

Contact Us

Contact Us

If you would like more information about our program or would like to arrange for an appointment please call 206-547-1955.

Please note—we are available by appointment only and groups are not open to the public. Please call us to set up an appointment to learn more about our program or to visit our offices.

Our program is located in a Historic Seattle Community Center in Wallingford—surrounded by 11 acres of gardens and park.

A Positive Alternative
4649 Sunnyside Ave N Suite 200
Seattle WA 98103

Located at the Good Shepherd Center in Wallingford
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