Tag Archives: REBT

1500 Smart Recovery Meetings

Posted on June 30, 2015

1,500th SMART Recovery Meeting Opens as Fast Growth Rate Continues

 The number of SMART Recovery meetings has reached the 1,500 milestone – less than three years after crossing the 1,000 mark – as more people embrace the program’s emphasis on becoming empowered to overcome addictions using science-based tools and peer support.

MeetingGrowthChart

The 1,500th, a Friday evening weekly meeting, has opened at the Portland Recovery Community Center (PRCC) in Portland, Maine. Niki Curtis, the SMART trained facilitator for the meeting, explains:

“When I first arrived, we didn’t have many non-12 step meetings, so our Program Manager asked if I would be interested in SMART Recovery training. I am so glad that I said yes because since that training two years ago, I have utilized the program’s tools in my own life and shared them with others in meetings. For instance, I found that doing SMART’s Cost/Benefit Analysis helps me with decision-making. The ABC tool helps me deal with my anger around loud neighbors, and I am using SMART’s Urge Log tool to quit smoking.  I have been working at the Center for two years. I love that we offer all types of meetings and that, like SMART, we respect all types of recovery. Continue reading

An Interview with Dr. Michael R. Edelstein: Cognitive Tools for Fighting Addiction and Beyond

Posted on June 16, 2015

SMART EdelsteinpicRecovery® is delighted to announce a new SMART Special Events Webinar: An Interview with Dr. Michael R. Edelstein: Cognitive Tools for Fighting Addiction and Beyond.

Saturday, June 20, 2015 5:00 PM, EDT.

Register here: www.smartrecovery.org/events
 

This free webinar is made possible by the generous sponsorship of the Lucida Treatment Center of Lantana, Florida.

The focus will be on how using simple evidence-based tools from cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) that can help anyone, not just those struggling with addiction. SMART focuses its application of these tools on addictive behavior, specifically, but we can use those same tools to help us learn to better cope with underlying issues – stress, worry, anger, anxiety – and free us to create and enjoy the lives we want. Continue reading

3 Ways to Dispute Irrational Beliefs

Posted on November 4, 2014

Are You a Loser?

QuestionPeople observe their behavior, and evaluate it in terms of how well they like it. If we did not do this, we would have no way of improving how we act.  When people seek help in therapy, in self-help groups, or by reading self-help books, they are not merely observing and thinking of their behaviors and deciding how to make adjustments. Typically, their thinking interferes with their ability to adjust and often they’re mainly aware of their misery.

REBT attempts to show you that (1) events do not automatically create your thoughts, (2) events do not cause your emotions, and (3) by changing your thinking, you will see things differently, and then your thoughts and emotions will aid you instead of interfering with your actions.

Let’s say you failed at something important to you. Compare the following two sets of thoughts regarding how they make you feel, how truthful they are, and how well they help you adjust.

1. I failed and that’s bad. Maybe I didn’t pay close enough attention to what was going on to prevent my failure. I regret that.

2. I should not have failed. It’s awful to fail as I did. Because I did fail, I’m a loser; I can’t stand myself.

Continue reading

Webinar: How to Overcome Addictions in One Lesson

Posted on April 8, 2014

April 12, 2014, 12:00 noon (edt)
podcast

Webinar Dr. Michael R. Edelstein, author of Three Minute Therapy will present “How to Overcome Addictions in One Lesson” on Saturday, April 12 2014 at 12:00 noon edt.

This webinar is designed to be helpful for any harmful behavior – drugs, gambling, eating disorders, smoking, self-harm — substance-related or not. Bring your questions! We think you’ll find, as one book reviewer noted, that: “Michael Edelstein cuts through the psychological jargon and makes clear how all of us can effect powerful changes in our psyches, in our lives and in the lives of our loved ones.”

Advance registration is required for this event. Please visit www.smartrecovery.org/events.

WebinarDr. Michael R. Edelstein is a licensed clinical psychologist with over 30 years experience and has a private practice in San Francisco, offering in-person as well as telephone/Skype sessions. He is famous as the author of Three Minute Therapy: Change Your Thinking, Change Your Life, with David Ramsay Steele, a self-help book for overcoming common emotional and behavioral problems. Most recently, he published Stage Fright, with Mick Berry, Therapy Breakthrough: Why Some Psychotherapies Work Better Than Others, with Richard Kujoth and David Ramsay Steele, and Rational Drinking: How to Live Happily With or Without Alcohol, with Will Ross. He is a long-standing SMART Recovery Volunteer. Continue reading

Avoid the Rating Game

Posted on October 1, 2013

Self-worth Is Not a Variable
Peter Soderman, SMART Recovery® Facilitator, Mexico

Powerless No LongerEven more important to our emotional health than the language we use to describe everyday situations are the terms we use to characterize the most important person in our lives — ourselves. Every single day we use words like jerk, dope, fool, moron, and even worse to define ourselves. Sometimes we use language like this in our heads, and sometimes say it under our breath or even aloud as though we have sentenced ourselves to ongoing perpetual judgment. We create a no-win situation resulting in our going through the day with self-worth rising and falling in relation to how we think our “ideal” self should function. We rate our individual attributes and arbitrary traits, none of which could ever define our intrinsic self-worth, and yet we behave as though they do.

Do you think green is good or bad? You might say something is more or less green, or that green is bad for some purposes, or even that you don’t like green. What you cannot honestly say is that green is intrinsically good or bad. Similarly, we cannot accurately and honestly rate ourselves, our essence as good or bad. We do, though, and cause ourselves great emotional disturbance by doing it.

Do yourself a favor. Refuse to rate yourself. When you catch yourself doing it, chuckle, and correct the internal language to reflect the true situation more accurately. Instead of thinking (or saying): “What did you do that for, you dumb jerk!” Try: “Next time, try to focus more on what you’re doing.” The first remark makes a general statement about your whole persona, while the second merely acknowledges that perhaps you weren’t “there” as much as you should have been. See the difference?

This concept is part of what we call Unconditional Self-Acceptance, or USA, and you will see it referenced in the upcoming chapters. What we shoot for in USA is a complete acceptance of ourselves for no other reason than that we are alive, and we have the capacity to enjoy our existence. We have various traits, and we behave differently depending upon our experiences and how we perceive the situation.

The important thing to remember is we are not our behavior. We can assess our behavior, along with our various traits, but what we cannot honestly do is evaluate something as diverse and complex as our entire selves. We have many traits, and we cannot judge our entire selves based upon any one of them. If we do, we invariably end up causing ourselves emotional upset as a result.

No one else can give us self-acceptance — it can only come from ourselves. The best part is that we are free to choose it at any time.


Source: The forgoing is an excerpt from “Powerless No Longer,” published by Pete Soderman, and is the property of the author.

About the Author: Pete Soderman is a Smart Facilitator, author, and lecturer who co-founded the SMART meeting in Wilmington, NC with Mike Werner, and is currently facilitating a SMART meeting in Ajijic, Jalisco Mexico. He has just published a book about addiction titled: “Powerless No Longer,” which is available from Amazon.com in both printed and electronic formats, and will soon be available as an audiobook. He has been involved in the addiction and treatment field for many years, and has started several addiction recovery meetings.

Albert Ellis, 100th Birthday

Posted on September 24, 2013

A Tribute to Albert Ellis


When AA Doesn’t Work for You: Rational Steps to Quitting Alcohol
September 27, 2013 is the 100th anniversary of the birth of Albert Ellis, founder of Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy. REBT is an action-oriented approach for helping people manage their emotions, cognitions, and behaviors. The techniques used in REBT have been found to be helpful for people working on addiction recovery and many have been incorporated into the SMART Recovery 4-Point Program.

Dr. Ellis is generally considered to be one of the originators of the cognitive revolutionary paradigm shift in psychotherapy and the founder of cognitive-behavioral therapies. Based on a 1982 professional survey of USA and Canadian psychologists, he was considered as the second most influential psychotherapist in history (Carl Rogers ranked first in the survey; Sigmund Freud was ranked third). Prior to his death, Psychology Today described him as the “greatest living psychologist.” During his career he authored or co-authored over seventy-five books, including “When AA Doesn’t Work for You: Rational Steps to Quitting Alcohol.”

Tom Horvath, Ph.D., President of SMART Recovery, recounts (below) highlights from the memorial that was held for Albert Ellis, Ph.D. at the 2007 annual convention of the American Psychological Association. In contrast to his public reputation as a kind of “Lenny Bruce of therapy”, Ellis was remembered by many for his kindness, courage, wisdom, wit, curiosity, learning, professional contributions, and personal generosity. Continue reading