Codependency in Relationships

Codependency in Relationships

 Many relationship problems have codependency as the root cause. My general premise is that for a relationship to work, each party needs to have so much love for his or her self that there is an excess that can then flow into the other party. What happens in relationships where the couple is regularly battling is that either one or most likely both of them are lacking in the self-love area. Usually, that is described as “that empty hole inside of me.” In the worst case scenario where both parties have less than adequate self-love, they are both looking to the other to “fill that empty hole.” The problem is that neither of them has enough love for themselves, so they have little or none to give to the other.

 People with low self-love tend to be very self-centered, “It’s all about me!” They are so needy that they are constantly making demands on their partners for attention. They become very jealous when their partner pays attention to anyone else. This jealousy isn’t necessarily sex-based. It can form over the partner’s hanging out with old buddies. It’s “but why aren’t you with me?” When this is happening on both sides of the relationship, it is easy to see how recriminations and battling can occur. 

 In codependent relationships, hardly anybody leaves regardless of how heavy the conflict. To explain the reason for this, it is important to look at how codependency functions as an addiction. Whereas people with substance addictions use the alcohol and drugs to deal with the hurt of little of no self-esteem and love, codependents use the attentions of others for the same reasons. As with substance addictions, as long as the drug is there, the internal ache is gone, withdraw the drug and there is an instant craving for more so as not to have to deal with the empty feelings. In the case of codependency, a person or a partner becomes the drug. As long as that other person is there, the emptiness is filled. The codependent person will do any and everything to make sure that the other person continues to fill that need. This includes staying in very destructive relationships long after a well functioning individual would have bailed out for self-preservation. “I know this is a lousy relationship, but it is better than nothing!” is the way a co-dependent mind thinks. 

Codependency is one of those addictions that only becomes a problem when it crosses the line from a need to a habit. As with another one, compulsive eating, they only become problems when one switches from it being a want to a compulsive need. With overeating, it is the difference between eating to live and living to eat. In all well functioning relationships, there is a degree of give and take where one might be giving a bit more than their level of comfortability would normally allow. Because the other party also does similar things, the payoff of having a well functioning relationship overrides any loses, it does not cause any grief. In codependent relationships, obsessively serving the other person’s needs and likes crosses the boundary from just being a nice, supportive and loving partner to one driven by the fear of losing.

There are a number of things that are very helpful to overcome codependency. They include becoming actively involved in either/or of both Codependents Anonymous and Alanon. Alanon is a specialized niche of codependency where the partner is or was an addict or alcoholic. Both are great, supportive organizations. Alanon has been around for a long time so, especially if your partner is or was an addict or alcoholic, it would be the place where you will find the most support from folks who have been walking the walk for a long time.

Also, as with all addictions, the root cause of this one is low or no self-esteem/love/worth so for long term recovery and to prevent switching to another addiction, working on one’s self-esteem and building up one’s self-love is of super importance.

©2019 Jason Wittman, MPS

[Permission to reproduce this article is granted as long as this notice and the “About the Author and the copyright information are included.]

*About The Author*

Jason Wittman, MPS, LAADC, CATC-IV (aka Successful People’s Secret Weapon) has had a private practice as a Counselor and Coach for over 40 years. His practice, http://Stage2Recovery.com focuses on coaching and advising business and professional clients, who are recovering from alcoholism and addictions, to work and live at their exquisite best. He is an expert on teaching and coaching the “getting-on-living,” self-esteem building and spirituality parts of recovery. He has his master’s degree from Cornell University in counseling-psychology and is certified as a drug & alcohol counselor, a clinical hypnotherapist and a practitioner of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP). He can be contacted at jason@stage2recovery.com or 213-804-4408

The STOP! Technique

The Stop! Technique

There’s a wonderful technique for effectively interrupting negative self-talk and getting you back on a positive track. As with most techniques and methods I write about this is one I use for myself. Before I describe the “Stop Technique,” itself, I need to set the stage, so to speak, by explaining what is going on in the mind when negative self-talk is incessantly occurring.

Although I am sure that brain scientists would not be able to find in their research what I am about to describe, I find this is a useful way to explain what is going on in our minds when negative thoughts abound. The mind operates like a committee of parts (or voices.) Each part has specific tasks that it is responsible for. Some of the prime players are the creative part, that invents new ways of doing things and the protective part, that wants to make sure that the person will remain OK and will do whatever it thinks is necessary to protest the being t keep it safe. It is this latter one that sometimes, in an effort to ensure that we remain OK will go to extremes. I view all the parts as benevolent in that they are doing what they do because they think they are acting in our best self-interests. Sometimes though, the methods they adopt and utilize to achieve their goals are lousy ones.

For instance, the part that keeps folks smoking cigarettes actually has good intentions. It wants the smoker to be at ease while being alert as well as giving him something to do with his hands in uncomfortable social situations. Cigarettes do all of those things but unfortunately, the smoker gets slowly destroyed in the process. Good intention – lousy choice of method.

The same is true for that part that keeps generating negative self-talk and paranoid thoughts. Its good intention is to protect the person against doing or thinking anything that might lead to failure or disappointment. A lousy method though because it causes inaction or over-cautiousness which can produce that ultimate failure that it wanted to prevent.

With this in mind, here is the “Stop Technique.” When I become aware that that part of the mind is engaged in incessant negative self-talk or conjuring up doomsday scenarios about current activities, potential partners or current projects, I engage the three-part “Stop Technique.”

The first thing I do is, either out loud or to myself if there are others present, to say, forcefully, “STOP!” I say it in the same voice as if I wanted to command a child who keeps nagging and nagging me to do something for him to the point that I am ready to do grave bodily damage, to shut up. As I say “STOP!” I take my hand, palm forward and push it out and down (towards the little demon). I say and do this with enough force and positive intention that it will get the child, or in our case, the mind, to stop making noise at least for the moment.

Step two is to use this period of silence to take a deep breath and go inside and talk to that part of the mind that is generating the negativity. Acknowledge and thank it for its good intention and let it know that you received and considered its messages. Then invite the part to quietly observe how your new ways of doing things are working out, letting it know that it could always, in the future point out impending problems, but at this point, just observing without comment would be appreciated.

The final step in this process is to say to yourself, “Now where was I?” which will bring you and your attention back to whatever footwork you were doing before the negative thoughts or voices interrupted that process.

This may work for you that first time through. The chances are, though, it might take repeated efforts before the inner mind understands that you will no longer be sidetracked by negative thoughts.

©2019 Jason Wittman, MPS

[Permission to reproduce this article is granted as long as this notice and the “About the Author and the copyright information are included.]

*About The Author*

Jason Wittman, MPS, LAADC, CATC-IV (aka Successful People’s Secret Weapon) has had a private practice as a Counselor and Coach for over 40 years. His practice, http://Stage2Recovery.com focuses on coaching and advising business and professional clients, who are recovering from alcoholism and addictions, to work and live at their exquisite best. He is an expert on teaching and coaching the “getting-on-living,” self-esteem building and spirituality parts of recovery. He has his master’s degree from Cornell University in counseling-psychology and is certified as a drug & alcohol counselor, a clinical hypnotherapist and a practitioner of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP). He can be contacted at jason@stage2recovery.com or 213-804-4408

 

A Common Sense Proposal for Preventing ‘Pay-Back Time’ & Revenge School Shootings

A Common Sense Proposal for Preventing ‘Pay-Back Time’ & Revenge School Shootings

~Comments on the shootings at Santana High School in Santee, CA and Columbine High School and a call for zero tolerance for Teasing, Taunting, Ridicule and Bullying (TTRB) and the teaching of self-esteem~

I originally wrote this article, just after the Santana High School shooting in Santee, CA in March 2001. I thought then and still do that the press concentrating on “guns in schools” and “bullying” stories are talking about symptoms (guns) and only part of the problem (bullying). We are now on another anniversary of the shootings at Columbine High School and today, over 230 school shootings later, here we are, still at go.  From the press reports and the statements of school officials and concerned citizens after each one of these massacres, it doesn’t seem like much has changed to change the chances of future catastrophes. It is the same old speculative explanations and remedies that have not worked to date. Once again, I offer my suggestions that are based on a lifetime of successfully working with marginalized kids. Please take note!

When 15-year-old Andy Williams opened fire on the students of Santana High School in Santee, CA, on Monday, March 6th, he fulfilled the hidden desires and became an instant hero to millions of school kids across the country, as did Eric and Dylan, the Columbine High shooters, before him. If this statement horrifies you, please read on.

By all the newspaper and TV accounts, Andy was a marginal, ridiculed, picked on, quite passive, “disaffected and unhappy boy, frequently taunted by his peers.” He was called “country boy” and the king of all taunts, “gay.” His classmates described him as “a twerp, skinny, and very quiet.” He laughed off verbal and even physical abuse and never fought back. He was beginning to drink and use drugs to fit in with the crowd. This is much the same profile as the other kids who shot up their schools. It is also the profile of millions of other school kids. Sure, most of them would never do what he did. Fear of the consequences and moral, religious and ethical convictions would have mitigated such a solution. They would just continue to suffer in silence. But to most of them, even to their own horror, the thought, accompanied by a slight smile, of “Pay-back Time!” might have crossed their minds.

In the Columbine High shootings, the press reported at the time that student said the shooters, Eric and Dylan, were continually harassed because of the perception that they were gay. They were regularly called “faggots.” I was able to confirm that they were, in fact, under continual pressure for being gay in a conversation with a gay youth in Denver who knew them.

Today, as for the last 35+ years, I work with teens and young adults, many of whom fit this profile. Probably why I relate so well with them is that at their age I, too, fit that profile. I was a scrawny, twerp, teased about big ears, large feet and being too smart. I would have probably been labeled “gay” if the word had been in use then. I laughed off their taunts and never fought back, per my Mother’s instructions. Fortunately, I found the protective shelter of the high school drama club and its caring teacher/advisor and by spending lots of time with adults.

The part of my high school experience and how I coped with it, that is most germane to this discussion is that, on many a night, I can remember going to sleep while fantasizing the torture and destruction of my tormentors. Fortunate for me and them, the social controls on a kid growing up in the late 1950s, the total lack of support and role models for such action, no guns in our household and my own lack of confidence to even pull off a decent suicide made turning that fantasy into a reality an impossibility. Today, though, kids with these feelings and fantasies have the means, the role models, the support from some of the darker parts of pop culture, and either active or tacit support of their peers. This is why an immediate preventative action plan is needed.

After these random school shootings, the question is always why did the shooters kill innocent bystanders, people that were not their tormentors? The reason is that after years of being the recipients of teasing, taunting, ridicule and bullying (TTRB) the “Johnny, Billy ….and Coach Williams won’t ever leave me alone” turns into “They won’t ever leave me alone!” At that point, everyone becomes the target of retribution.

Addressing bullying is not enough. Bullying’s three cousins in harassment; Teasing, Taunting, and Ridicule, are different enough and just as much of a problem to the victims to be worthy of addressing on their own right. Ridicule, incidentally, is what teachers do. When I was in high school, it was usually the gym teachers. When teachers ridicule students it presents a negative role model and gives tacit permission for students to engage in TTRB themselves.

Since the shootings in Santee, the usual suggestions for preventing another such tragedy have been offered in the media. As usual, they miss the mark now as they have in the past. The Santee school system had in place all of the most up to date solutions, they had an anti-violence program, adult monitors, all sorts of contingency plans, the works. Obviously, it wasn’t enough. So what will work? I have two suggestions based on over 35 years of working with teenagers. The first one is easy to implement. The second is a long-term solution that will not only deal with this issue but will most probably greatly reduce teen use of alcohol and drugs.

Suggestion #1 is to institute in every school, starting with pre-school, a policy of zero tolerance for teasing, taunting, ridicule and bullying (TTRB). In the workplace, today, a slightly off-color or sexual remark can legally be the subject of a sexual harassment lawsuit. However, on school campuses teasing is dealt with, if it is dealt with at all, by attempts at fortifying the coping skills of the victim. I have no quarrel with those efforts and my second suggestion is probably the most effective way to do that, but they are secondary to stopping the aggression, period! “Boys will be boys” will no longer do. Kids can get kicked out of school under the zero gun policy just for pointing their finger like it is a gun at another student. Schools need to be at least as strict in dealing with those who verbally assault their fellow students. Principals, school officials, teachers, other responsible adults and fellow students that tolerate any degree of teasing, taunting and harassment or who join in or initiate the ridicule of a student must be held accountable. Zero tolerance for teasing, ridicule, taunting and bullying AND the failure to report or stop such activities, must become the enforced norm in all schools.

The Newport-Mesa Unified School District in Orange County, Calif. has become the first school system to modify its zero-tolerance policy to include, “any gestures, comments, threats or actions…which cause or threaten to cause…bodily harm or personal degradation.” Strict adoption of this kind of policy, nationwide, will go a long way to eliminating most campus violence including playground fistfights.

Suggestion #2 is to teach self-esteem and self-love to all students starting in pre-school. My experience working with teenagers over the years has lead me to believe that lack of self-esteem and love is the root cause of most, if not all, of student problems including, under-achieving, substance abuse and addictions, acting out behaviors and especially campus violence. The bully, taunter and teaser does so in an effort to compensate for and to fix an emptiness inside by putting someone else down. People who love themselves have no need to oppress others. Kids, who do love themselves, have more resilience to the negativity of their peers. They also are less likely to get caught up in abusive relationships and will be more likely to seek out as partners, those who also have an excess of self-love to share.

How to teach self-esteem and love is the subject of many books, including a future one from me. There is, though, a very effective, ultra-simple and best of all, no-cost solution for teaching self-esteem and self-love. Everyone that I have ever taught this to, from pre-schoolers to adults, has experienced huge improvements. This is one thing that assisted me the most build my self-esteem and love. Here is the description of how to teach it, followed by why I believe it is so effective:

“From now on, every time you see your reflection in a mirror, you MUST smile AND say one nice thing about yourself. This nice thing is something you already know that is good about you. It can be a physical thing, but even better if it is an internal goodness, like being considerate or sharp-witted. It is not an affirmation, which is something you would like to believe about yourself and say repetitiously until, hopefully, it sinks in. The other part of this exercise is that if you use the mirror to beat yourself up, you must say two nice things for every nasty one!

This exercise works because it develops a new habit of saying nice things to oneself, which automatically leads to self-love. Most people with low self-love and esteem have a well-developed habit of beating themselves up verbally (and sometimes physically). Perfectionists are the masters of this since they will always perform below their expectations. When this new habit of smiling and saying nice things to oneself replaces the old self-deprecating one, a new person emerges. A side benefit is that one can’t smile and feel down at the same time, so these periodic, face-induced smiles can help break a downward emotional slide.

An important side benefit of the zero-tolerance policy for teasing, taunting, ridicule and bullying is a climate that is conducive for building self-esteem and self-love. This will be especially true if the policy includes the school staff. Public ridicule from teachers both sets a bad example and destroys self-esteem.

Now is one of those windows of opportunities when school districts can really do something that will positively affect the quality of life on their school campuses. Immediately adopting my zero tolerance suggestion will so drastically change the campus atmosphere that the need for the picked-upons to engage in any form of retribution or “Pay-Back Time” will be virtually eliminated. Quick implementation of these suggestions will ensure that no more lives are needlessly lost.

©2001, rev. 2007, 2019, Jason Wittman, MPS

[Would you like to reprint this article? You can, as long as you publish the entire article and include this complete blurb with it:]

About the Author:

Jason Wittman, MPS, LAADC, CATC-IV (aka Successful People’s Secret Weapon) is the former Executive Director of Los Angeles Youth Supportive Services, Inc. ( http://www.la-youth.org ) and has had a private practice as a Life Coach specializing in working with parents of teenage boys and young adults ( http://TheParentsCoach.com ) He’s been in private practice as a Counselor and Coach for over 40 years. His practice, http://Stage2Recovery.com focuses on coaching and advising business and professional clients, who are recovering from alcoholism and addictions, to work and live at their exquisite best. He has his master’s degree from Cornell University in counseling-psychology and is certified as a drug & alcohol counselor, a clinical hypnotherapist and a practitioner of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP). He can be contacted at jason@stage2recovery.com or 213-804-4408

Why People Buy Expensive Programs and Don’t Use Them

In the following video, Tony Robbins interviews two very successful internet marketers who are baffled by the number of people who buy their high end courses and do not use them. Tony is right on with his explanation of their lack of following through. When Tony talks about negative belief systems and lack of certainty those are all products of low self-esteem. If that is you and would like to work on your inner mind so that you can easily follow through, contact me. I have guided hundreds of clients through the journey to great self-esteem. To aid in that process, I have just produced a self-hypnosis program, “Enhancing Self-Esteem,” that work wonders!

<iframe width=”560″ height=”315″ src=”https://www.youtube.com/embed/0ImIuAvkUMo?rel=0″ frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>

A Common Sense Proposal for Preventing ‘Pay-Back Time’ & Revenge School Shootings

[This article was originally written 18 years ago and yet it is still as true today as the day I wrote it. Please widely circulate to anyone who has a concern with preventing school violence, addictions and teen suicides.]

A Common Sense Proposal for Preventing ‘Pay-Back Time’ & Revenge School Shootings

~Comments on the shootings at Santana High School in Santee, CA and Columbine High School and a call for zero tolerance for Teasing, Taunting, Ridicule and Bullying (TTRB) and the teaching of self-esteem~

I originally wrote this article, just after the Santana High School shooting in Santee, CA in March 2001. I thought then and still do that the press concentrating on “guns in schools” and “bullying” stories are talking about symptoms (guns) and only part of the problem (bullying). We are now at the eight-year anniversary of the shootings at Columbine High School and today there is yet another and far worse shooting spree at the Virginia Tech University. From the press reports and the statements of school officials and concerned citizens, it doesn’t seem like much has changed to change the chances of future catastrophes. It is the same old speculative explanations and remedies that have not worked to date. Once again, I offer my suggestions that are based on a lifetime of successfully working with marginalized kids. Please take note.

Continue reading A Common Sense Proposal for Preventing ‘Pay-Back Time’ & Revenge School Shootings

The Dream of Dreams

The following is an excerpt from my forthcoming book, “Winning at Life:” The Dream of Dreams I believe that one can describe the journey through one’s business and personal life as playing a series of winnable games worth playing. One of my mentors, Coachville’s Dave Buck says there are 3 types of people; people who are playing winnable games that are worth playing, meaning that they are engaged in life’s activities that are either where their passion are or where they really want to be or better yet both, AND they are winnable games, Without both elements, they fall into the second category of folks who in the long run will never achieve the level of happiness and satisfaction of the first group. This group is either doing what they want to do but the game is not winnable or the opposite they are playing a very winnable (meaning  achievable)  game ( their job, profession, life)  but it is not their winnable game. An example of the first type would be a person who has aspired to be a world-class pianist but just doesn’t have the chops, the talent to achieve that goal.  An example of the latter type would be someone who always wanted to be a jazz pianist but was pressured by his parents to become a medical doctor. He became a renowned surgeon but he was very unhappy. When he once again took up jazz piano along with being a surgeon, his life felt totally fulfilled. The third group are those people who are neither playing winnable games nor do they have a clue as to what is worthwhile playing.  These folks just wondering aimlessly through life in job after job, only temporarily happy at what they are doing and not having a clue as to where they are or why they are there. All they know is that this is another less than happy situation in their lives. For this last group they are like the poor little lamb that has lost his way, of nursery fame.  They are either those who started out in life with an idea of what they wanted to do, but they all did not do anything to keep that vision or dream alive or they really haven’t a clue and just muddle on through life aimlessly. For those who really do not have any idea of what are their interests or passions, consulting with a career coach that specializes in assisting people to discover their passions and/or aptitudes would be a good first step. Just knowing where one’s passions are and what kind of life’s work would be most satisfying or fulfilling, is not enough to ensure that in the long run those goals will be achieved. The missing element is what I call, “The Dream of Dreams.” The Dream of Dreams is a visualization of what life would look like if his or her fondest, most passionate aspirations are happening right now. The Dream of Dreams is like the automatic pilot in an aircraft.  The autopilot is an instrument that once it knows the destination of the plane will keep the plane on course even when the wind keeps attempting to blow it off course.  Autopilots cannot do their work if they do not have specific destinations entered into the system. If an airline pilot was heading to Hawaii from Los Angeles and the pilot gave the autopilot the destination of “West” rather than the exact coordinates of Honolulu Airport, everyone will get very wet when the plane misses the island and runs out of fuel. That is exactly what happened to those folks who did not continually work on their Dream of Dreams. When the inner mind, which computes visually, gets a clear picture of where the person wants to go to it will automatically keep him or her on track. The best way to program the inner mind is through visualization. The following is the visualization process. Please keep in mind that this is a practice, not just a one-time thing. Machines like autopilot in planes only require a onetime setting for them to work. Our inner minds need continual visual suggestions for them to finally get that this is a new program for doing things, a new destination. When it does, they will do whatever it is forever. This is why habits are so very hard to get rid of. All suggestions and imagery must be in the positive, meaning that the inner mind drops the word, “not” out of the suggestion so, “I am not afraid,” gets heard as, “ I am afraid.” “I’m feeling very confident,” works much better. All imagery must be in the present tense as if it is happening now. It is a strange construction but the effective form would be, “In 10 years, I am doing….” not “will be doing ……” So what is The Dream of Dreams? The Dream of Dreams is that dream that, assuming you have all the education you would ever need, all the finances, all the breaks and all the experience, in other words every resource you would ever need, would be exactly where you would ultimately like to be ending up in your life. The dream incidentally, is always under construction. The most important part is that for it to produce the intended results, dreaming it must become a part of one’s daily practice. There was a period in my life when I realized that I was stagnating and not liking what I was doing, work-wise. I started depressing myself a bit, because it was not the me that I was used to.  I started an exploration of why that was happening and discovered that because I had actually achieved and had been living my original Dream of Dream, I had neglected to revise it to include my new goals and life’s desires. So my inner mind no longer had a destination and it shut down the creative process and therefore I was in the doldrums. When I take clients through this exercise of forming and imaging The Dream of Dreams, I would usually say, “Close your eyes and go inside for a while. Imagine and picture that I have a magic wand and when I tap you on the shoulder, you will be transported to a time in your future when you are in your perfect life. You are doing the things you always most wanted to do and living the life you always wanted to live. You have all the resources and abilities you will ever need to be living the ultimate life. So now picture and imagine that if you were open your eyes, you would be in that ultimate life. Look around now. What do you see you doing?  What is your occupation? Where are you living? Who are your friends and associates? Now look closer and engage all your senses. If you are at work where are you? If you see yourself as a renowned professor, what does your office look like, what degrees and letters of appreciation are on your wall? What are people telling you and writing about you? If you are a famous actor, picture yourself in the ultimate role in the movies or play of your fondest dreams. What do your surroundings smell like? Who are your co-stars? Notice the rave reviews of your performances hanging on your dressing-room walls. How does that feel? What are you telling yourself about all this success? Picture yourself being interviewed by the TV interviewer who only interviews major celebs. How great does that feel? If you regularly practice dreaming this Dream of Dreams, always revising it to reflect your current aspirations, it is almost guaranteed that you will someday realize that you were once dreamed of being. That is because your inner mind, once it grabs that this as the destination it is supposed to be moving towards, will automatically get you to make the responsible choices you need to make to keep you on track. The beauty of this technique is that it is a willpower-less solution! Willpower is an outer mind trying to override an inner mind program, an utterly useless effort that usually leads to frustration and failure. Because The Dream of Dreams usually updates that vision directly into your inner mind through visualization, a language it understands the need to override or try to override its programming is avoided. One last requirement about visualizing the contents of your dream, it has to be absolutely positive, totally devoid of any downsides or negativity or less than exquisite performance. Job in the Bible, said,” What I fear the most is upon me!”  I say that what you imagine tends to be realized. If you imagine Doom and Gloom, as Jog did, that’s what you get! It is okay to include how well you adapt to changing conditions or bits of adversity or how each performance Is better than the last. You just have to be vigilant to keep doubts and uncertainties from entering The Dream of Dreams. Remember, that all the prerequisites and conditions are more than favorable to insure the total success of your The Dream of Dreams. ©2015, Jason Wittman, M.P.S., LAADC, CATC-IV

[Permission to reproduce this article is granted as long as this notice and the “About the Author and the copyright information is included.]

*About The Author* Jason Wittman, MPS, LAADC, CATC-IV (aka Successful People’s Secret Weapon) is the former Executive Director of Los Angeles Youth Supportive Services, Inc. ( http://www.la-youth.org ) and has had a private practice as a Counselor and Coach for over 40 years. His practice, http://Stage2Recovery.com focuses on coaching and advising business and professional clients, who are recovering from alcoholism and addictions, to work and live at their exquisite best. He is an expert on teaching and coaching the “getting-on-living,” self-esteem building and spirituality parts of recovery. He has his master’s degree from Cornell University in counseling-psychology and is certified as a drug & alcohol counselor, a clinical hypnotherapist and a practitioner of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP). He can be contacted at jason@stage2recovery.com or 213-804-4408