Category: Health and Wellness

Alcoholism is a Mental Illness

Thinking caused the Drinking

Ever wonder why your alcoholic? Well it’s our stinking thinking that leads to our drinking. And until we understand our thinking, we will continue to drink. To understand our thinking, we must focus on the behavior and walk it back. All external events go through a mental filter of beliefs, values, and memories, before reaching our inner perception of ourselves, (our story), and based on our emotional state at the time of the event, a response will be arrived at. The more we respond to opinions and feelings, the more dis-empowering the beliefs we hold. Beliefs we might not even realize we have. All beliefs are limited by nature, we don’t know what we don’t know.

Addiction is only a Symptom

Addiction is very complex and goes far beyond a Self Will run riot. For many it’s feelings of inferiority and low self esteem, that are behind the addiction. It’s by focusing on the feelings that cause the irritability and discontent, that recovery can be found. It’s my contention that beneath every addiction lies a mental illness, It’s called Narcissistic Personality Disorder.

 Thinking is the Problem

You can not even begin to deal with a disease until you can identify it, by it’s proper name. Treatment begins with a diagnosis, AA’s problem is it only focuses on a symptom of the disease. We must look beyond the limited views of AA, to see the true cause, of our suffering.. We are responsible for the beliefs we hold. We must focus on the beliefs that make us feel so unworthy, depressed and angry, searching for relief. As long as we continue to look outside ourselves, we cannot heal.

Quality of Sobriety

When first I started attending AA, I was told I had a disease called  Alcoholism, both chronic and  progressive, mental illness was never mentioned. While focusing on sobriety provided relief initially, it also prevented me from confronting my real problem, my thinking. After sitting through thousands of meetings, listening to people struggle with their ongoing issues and personal problems, it started to become evident to me that the problems I had, were much deeper then just the drinking, and that they wouldn’t go away simply because I stopped drinking.

Focused on Character Defects

The focus on abstention, character defects, and shortcomings kept me from recognizing and working on my dis-empowering beliefs. Beliefs adopted  unknowingly as a child, which I continued to hold, and re-enforce, even though I had stopped drinking. For years in recovery, I was convinced that my perceptions where reality.

Actions Don’t Change Beliefs

I bought into the fallacy, that good actions led to good thinking, and that’s simply not true. It was my beliefs and the power I gave them that was causing my problems. I could act good for years but if I still believed, deep inside, that I was inherently bad, then I was just whistling in the dark. These beliefs would keep bringing into my life, situations where I would feel I was bad. For years  I had no concept of cause and effect.

The Bondage of Self

We drink to help us forget, even for a little while, this feeling, of
irritability and discontent. We are Narcissistic, always thinking about
me, me, me. We believe that the world revolves around us, this creates
an endless need to be accepted and cared for by others. In more severe
cases it can cause us to feel that we are not lovable or valuable and
that we don’t really belong. We don’t feel safe being our authentic
self, so we create a false self, and the fear of this false self being
found out, leads to more and more elaborate lies and myth building about
who we really are, and more drinking.

Cause and Effect

We judge because we are angry. We are angry because we are afraid. We
are afraid because sub-consciously we fear we aren’t enough. We
complain, because sub-consciously we believe that complaining helps
solve problems. We criticize because sub-consciously we believe it makes
us feel better about ourselves. We are impatient because
sub-consciously we believe that being impatient resolves issues quicker.
Our dis-empowering beliefs are the cause, an unmanageable life is the
effect. We are irritable and discontent because of this feeling of
unmanageability and we seek relief, most commonly in drugs and alcohol.

Addiction is an Allergy

We drank for relief, it slowly becomes a habit. Slowly we prefer being intoxicated as opposed to sober. We eventually lose the ability to tell the difference between sobriety and intoxication. We develop an allergy of mind and body, once we start drinking we can’t stop. As we work harder to sustain the myth that we are OK, we become neurotic about being found out. This neurosis further helps establish the dis-empowering beliefs systems with regard to how we interact with the world. So in addition to being a critical, impatient, complainer, we now become arrogant, bossy, and aggressive. We know the innate truth but we lie, to ourselves and others. The drinking obscures the real problem.

Bondage of Self

Narcissistic Personality Disorder is one of a group of conditions known as dramatic personality disorders. All Narcissists have unstable and intense emotions and a distorted self-image of themselves. Trapped in the bondage of self, we have an excessive sense of importance and superiority, and a preoccupation with success and power, this can also indicate a lack of self-confidence. NPD often involves a deep sense of insecurity and a lack of self-esteem, coupled with a feeling of victimization. Some even exhibit unstable and intense emotions when their self-image is challenged.

NPD is the Root Cause of All Addictions

A study carried out by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, published in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, found that 7.7 percent of all men and 4.8 percent of all women develop Alcoholism during their lives. I think the number is much higher, and it directly correlates with the percentage of addictions in the general population. I believe that NPD is the root cause for all addictions. One of the central defects of a Narcissist is there inability to acknowledge it. With over thirty years experience in AA, I’ve never meet an alcoholic who wasn’t a Narcissist.


It is unclear what causes NPD. It may be associated with
circumstances during childhood, such as very high parental expectations,
over-pampering, neglect, or abuse. An individual may have learned
manipulative behaviors from their parents or household members Whenever there is a major deficit in parental love, the child will in all likelihood, respond to that deficit by assuming itself to be the cause of the deficit, they develop an unrealistic negative self image, this may undermine their ability to tune into other people’s feelings and needs. The NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital points to recent evidence that a genetic predisposition and other biological or biochemical factors may also be linked to NPD.

Untreated NPD

A person with untreated NPD has a greater chance of abusing drugs and alcohol, and of having depression, relationship problems, difficulties at work or school, and suicidal behaviors or thoughts. A study published in PLoS One found that males with NPD have higher levels of cortisol in their blood. Cortisol is a stress hormone. A person with NPD may have higher levels even when stress levels are low. High blood cortisol is linked to a greater risk of developing cardiovascular problems.

Living with somebody who has NPD

Living with someone who has NPD can be challenging. Family members have described their loved one as:

  • controlling
  • egotistical
  • frequently dissatisfied with the actions of others
  • prone to blaming others and making them feel guilty for all their problems
  • losing their temper at the slightest provocation
  • turning their back and giving people the “silent treatment”
  • being physically and sexually abusive


Below are the most common traits found in people with NPD:

  • An insatiable appetite for the attention of others
  • Extreme feelings of jealousy
  • An expectation of special treatment
  • Exaggerating achievements, talents, and importance
  • Extreme sensitivity and a tendency to be easily hurt and to feel rejected with little provocation
  • Difficulty maintaining healthful relationships
  • Fantasizing about their own intelligence, success, power, and appearance
  • An ability to take advantage of others to achieve a goal, without regret or conscience
  • A lack empathy, or ability to understand and share the feelings of others, and a tendency to disregard others’ feelings
  • A belief that only certain people can understand their uniqueness
  • A tendency to consider themselves as skilled in romance
  • Responding to criticism with denial, anger, humiliation, and shame
  • Seeking out praise and positive reinforcement from others
  • An expectation that others will agree with them and go along with what they want
  • Whatever they crave or yearn for must be “the best”

Other Traits

Many see narcissists as selfish, though they never see this themselves. They may describe the person as self-obsessed, arrogant, tough-minded, and lacking emotion. As we live with dis-empowering beliefs, we continue to dishonor and lie to ourselves. Our unexpressed fear grows. As this fear grows, it turns to anger, eventually it explodes, usually over minor things, we either lash out, hurting our loved ones,.or we implode, getting angry with ourselves, which causes depression. We lie in order to belong. We pretend, to be different from who we actually are, to fit in, belong, to feel safe, to survive, it’s all a lie. People talk about being honest, and we see them lie all the time.


We learn denial, the ability to distract ourselves and shut down what
we need and want. We deny what we observe or know to be true with
others. We create fantasies of how we wish things could be, at the same
time making excuses, to do nothing that would change the situation. The
more we deny the less we heal, the more we lie to ourselves, the further
we get from our true selves. Honesty becomes our biggest challenge.


No specific lab tests exist that can diagnose NPD, but X-rays and blood tests may help rule out other conditions that may be causing the symptoms. There are several types of personality disorders, some of them overlap, and it is possible to be diagnosed with more than one type. Most people coming into AA don’t realize they are suffering from the progressive disease of Alcoholism, in addition to having a mental illness. The most significant reason Medicine knows so little about the Narcissist is because they are extremely reluctant to be studied. Narcissists are master manipulators, and we deny even the most obvious symptoms, from ourselves and others.

An NPD diagnosis must follow the criteria written in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), published by the APA (American Psychiatric Association). While the following must be present for a diagnosis of NPD to be made.

All Alcoholics display some if not all these symptoms.

  • The patient’s idea and importance of self is exaggerated.
  • Fantasies about beauty, success, and power dominate the individual’s thoughts.
  • The person thinks they are special, and relate only to other “special” people.
  • They need to be admired all the time.
  • They believe they are entitled to most things.
  • They manipulate and take advantage of others.
  • They lack empathy, the ability to feel and recognize the feelings and needs of others.
  • They envy other people.
  • Their behavior appears haughty or arrogant.


Traditionally, addiction was considered to be a moral failing and a question of choice on the part of the drinker. Treatment was in line with that school of thought and included, imprisonment, sentencing to a mental asylum, or religious based intervention involving prayer. Two years after the failure of Prohibition, AA was founded by Bill W. and Dr. Bob, it was based on 12-Steps, a series of principles that used spiritual and moral laws,which when followed offed addicts mental, emotional, and societal rehabilitation. Due primarily to the efforts of Marty Mann (one of the first women to complete the 12-Step program), the National Committee for Education on Alcoholism was formed. They advocated radical notions about alcoholism and alcoholics..

Recovery becomes Big Business

In 1956 the American Medical Association declared Alcoholism as an illness, and the modern treatment centers where born. The ability to charge insurance companies for treatment has seen an explosion of the treatment center Industry. Some of which incorporate the latest theories in Psychotherapy and Neural Linguistics Programming and Aftercare Modalities, some who just offer a high priced 12-Step program. For profit treatment centers have led to many abuses in the name of recovery. (hence the joke that a big book can cost $30,000).

It has to be Your Idea

It is my contention that the reason for the continued poor recovery rates in traditional 12-Step programs, is due to a number of issues. The first being that it’s rarely the addicts idea to attend AA or any other 12-Step program, it’s usually the Law, our your family, that push you into recovery. In 1989, America’s first drug courts began sentencing“nonviolent drug offenders” to 12-step programs, in the effort to reduce drunk driving nationwide, it was also seen as an affordable alternative,to medical treatment.  A majority of people attending AA for the first time, don’t want to be there.

Unwilling to Change.

Secondly, AA still focuses primarily on the symptoms of (addiction), and not the causes, the grave psychological problems that underlie them. According to Dr. Lance Dodes, in his book The Sober Truth: Debunking the Bad Science Behind 12-Step Programs and the Rehab Industry (co-written with Zachary Dodes),” when the Big Book was first published in 1939, it was met with wide skepticism in the medical community. The AMA called it a curious combination of organizing propaganda and religious exhortation. A year later, the Journal of Nervous and Mental Diseases described it as a rambling sort of camp-meeting confession of experiences … Of the inner meaning of alcoholism there is hardly a word. It is all surface material.” To think that a lasting recovery can be achieved by going to nightly meetings with a group of similarly afflicted individuals, and a set of 12 non-medical guidelines for recovery, half of which require direct appeals to to ignore the last 90 years of Medical and Psychological advances. Simply being open to the mental illness aspect of addiction would improve recovery rates.

To quote Charlotte Kasl, “While the emergence of 12-Step programs and Alcoholics Anonymous where highly significant occasions that did at one time shed new light on alcoholism, without substantial updating this institution falls into the category of Vaclav Havel’s words, “It no longer provides new, spontaneous, and effective evidence of things hitherto only guessed at.” The 12-Step approach purports to be for all people, but it’s literature lacks knowledge of most people.”

How To Improve 12-Step Programs

Combining Psychotherapy, and Neural Linguistic Programming techniques with traditional 12-Step programs would help individuals come to understand what causes their problems and help them learn how to relate more positively to others. This simple change would result in more constructive discussion about what lies beneath the addiction. How beliefs are the cause and behavior the effect. Using modern techniques, they could more quickly help a person build up their self-esteem and acquire realistic expectations of themselves and others. Even combining Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), with traditional 12-Step group therapy would be an improvement. CBT helps the patient identify negative beliefs and behaviors, in order to replace them with healthful, positive ones. Medication may help with some of the more distressing aspects of NPD


Recovery can still follow the 12-steps format, with guidance by those who have found recovery, from this seemingly hopeless state of mind and body. .Basic Psychotherapy and Neural-Linguistic Programming techniques should be incorporated in the program or at least utilized by those who have recovered. This would be useful in helping people with Narcissistic Personality Disorder relate to others in a healthier and more compassionate way.

In Conclusion

Acting and doing good, only acted as a displacement mechanism. It only shifted my attention and did not reach, the deep held beliefs, that I held. That not only was I not good enough or smart enough, but I was not deserving enough, to be truly happy. As long as I held on to these beliefs, real recovery would be out of reach, and that the best I could hope for, would be a stalemate between me and my addictions, doomed to forever be in recovery, but never recovered. Lucky for me I had a psychic change, sufficient to change these deep-seated beliefs. To know God’s will, and the power to carry it out. I want to share my thirty years of experience, in order that you might find true recovery, a lot faster than I did.

As always, thanks for visiting. Dave







If You Believe Your Not Loved?

Most beliefs are formed in early childhood, many  we are not even aware of. There is a big difference between the power of beliefs, based on whether they are fundamental or ancillary.

A fundamental belief would be that you are not loved or worthy of love.  Developing this belief causes a disconnection with the world, and the people around you. Ancillary belief is if you believed a certain group of people were not worthy of love.

This disconnection with people sets us adrift in the world, with no connection to society or our place in it. We start to experience the world from the external in as opposed to the internal out. We are the passenger, not the driver, set up to become a victim, we feel powerless.

Life just happens, we don’t believe in anything and we don’t take responsibility for anything. We become dependent on the world and others to take care of us. We develop  addictive personalities, easily addicted to anything that changes the way we feel.

In this situation, we you set ourselves up for constant frustration. Life doesn’t deliver what we want. We want to be made happy, by getting a particular thing or having a particular experience, and until we get it, we live in expectation. Happiness is just around the corner, but never here and now.

As we wait there is a constant gnawing, a sense of irritation, because life is failing to deliver. Unconsciously we feel cheated, everybody seems to be getting what they want. Perversely we judge, criticize, and complain. We push people away without being aware of it. We start to pursue external power by attempting to manipulate and control people. We lie to get what we want it.

Our expectations have been swollen to impossible proportions, to which life can never satisfy. The desires get fiercer and harder then ever to satisfy, this results in a mounting sense of frustration and isolation.

We establish a pattern of a background of anger, fed by the feeling that our deep desires are not being fulfilled. This anger is always just beneath the surface of consciousness. This leaves a very low level of tolerance, so that even a small irrelevant irritation, is enough to make us miserable and depressed.

The search for value and self worth is always desperate, because the pain of wanting to be loved and feeling unlovable, wanting to love and feeling incapable of loving, needing to belong and feeling excluded is unbearable. This is the pain of powerlessness. It lies at the core of the our experience.

Powerlessness is the experience of feeling intrinsically defective, inherently ugly, and without value. It is the fear if others could see us as we really are, they would not want to be with us. It is self hatred, it is desperation.

Avoiding the pain of powerlessness continually determines our perceptions, intentions and actions. We flee them by attempting to manipulate and control circumstances. This is the pursuit of external power. We respond to our perceptions not reality.

Our perceptions are composed of opinions, feelings, thoughts, and beliefs. If we respond to opinion, feelings, and thoughts it’s because of limiting beliefs. All beliefs are limited by nature. We don’t know what we don’t know. How can you identify whats true versus an opinion, feeling or thought.

Our intentions determine our experiences whether or not we are aware of them. We must look for the why beneath the why to find the actual intention. It’s this intention that creates the consequences.

We believe that actions create consequences, and are unaware that it’s the intention behind the action that creates the consequences of the action. When we are aware of our intention (cause), we can predict the consequences that they will create (effect). When we are not aware of our intentions, the experiences that they create are often surprising and most often painful.

These experiences have four things in common.

  1. They express fear.
  2. They are painful to experience.
  3. They create painful destructive consequences.
  4. They are central to our spiritual development.

It’s only through admitting our powerlessness that we can heal. As long as our feelings of powerlessness, remain outside our awareness, we will continue to live in a “sea of suffering”. With out an intervention, our lives unfold robotically from one painful experience to another. We remain victims in the game of life, unaware that we hold the keys to the kingdom.

Only through surrender to a power greater then ourselves can we locate and challenge the dis-empowering beliefs we hold. Even though we want others to remove the pain and emptiness from our lives, we slowly learn that we are  responsible for were we are.  What is behind our eyes becomes more important than what is in front of them.

It’s only by becoming aware of the seeds we are planting (our intentions)  that we can know in advance what crop we will harvest (the consequences of our intentions). To maintain this  awareness, it’s not enough to live one day at a time, we need to live 5 minutes at a time. Our impact on the world is significant whether or not we are aware of it, and even whether or not we desire it.

As always thanks for visiting. Dave

Neuro Linguistic Programing; In Support Of

A Humanist Approach

Neuro Linguistic Programing is a Humanist approach to solving problems. It goes against the paradigm of Modernist Scientific thought, which is Newtonian based. This Empirical, Mechanistic, and Reductionist approach to problem solving focuses on the, Linear, Objective and Rational components to problem solving.

The Empirical Fallacy

From an Empirical perspective, the only way truth can be approached is through measurement and numbers. Pushed to its extreme, anything that cannot be measured or documented by numbers, does not exist and therefore by definition is not true. NLP believes that only through studying the same phenomenon from different perspectives, trying to explain what is going on, and through inter-disciplinary research, can the truth be found. Empirical research can never tell us whats going on, but only what we were able to record at a certain moment or time period.

Mechanistic Model is to Simplistic

A Mechanistic model of science limits us to a simplistic cause and effect approach to problems. Simply put if you push here you will see the effect repeatedly and predictably over there.NLP has a more Dynamism or to use a new term vitalism belief which maintains that vital activities cannot be explained and never will be explained, by the laws which govern lifeless matter. Just because you have a certain gene doesn’t mean you will be an alcoholic or if you suffer abuse, as a child, you will show A,B and C, as an adult. Neuro Linguistic Programing postulates that humans are not that predictable.

Problem with the Reductionist Approach

A Reductionist approach suggests that an analysis of the parts is sufficient for understanding.  For a reductionist “the simple is the source of the complex”. In order to explain human behavior one needs to reduce it to its constituent elements. NLP believes this creates a cascade of errors in method and logic, creates a confusion of statistical artifact with biological reality. The mind and the body affect each other.

Linear Science Assumes to Much

A Linear science assumes X causes Y which causes Z. It assumes that casual relationships are linear, geometric and explained in mathematical terms. Linear thinking does not understand multi-variant thinking and that problems are often spherical and multi-directional. NLP believes that science is a process of constant refinement and that we don’t know what we don’t know until we know it.

Objective Observation of Subjective Occurances

To be Objective, to have an unbiased view, you must be apart from. Objectivity is almost always the opposite of feeling or emotion, and is considered superior to subjectivity by Modernists. NLP recognizes that experience, feelings and emotions are all subjective therefore not measurable, or amenable to the rigors of Modernist science,

Doesn’t fit into a Rationalist Ideology.

The Rational approach in a modernist scientific world has evolved into the need to deny experience, in order to fit into an ideology. Thus Modernist Science refuses to accept many of the Neuro Linguistic Programing suppositions. How can you prove empirically, “that people aren’t broken”, or that “the past doesn’t equal the future”.

NLP Based on Ancient Beliefs

Humanist psychologists look at human behavior not only through the eyes of the observer, but through the eyes of the person doing the behaving.. They believe that an individual’s behavior is connected to his inner feelings and self image. These ideas go back as far as the traditions of the Advaita Vedanta, the ancient Hindu philosophy based on the highest wisdom of the Upanishads, The self is outside time and beyond the limited walled off ego.

Modernist Science is Very Arrogant

Trying to apply Empirical reasoning to the pre-suppositions of NLP as listed below is the epitome of arrogance. To call it a pseudo-science is to ignore the fact that there is a big difference between disagreeing with a hypothesis and proving it wrong. Modernist Science has not been able to categorically prove that any of these suppositions are wrong.

These are the Presuppositions of NLP:

  1. Respect for the other persons model of the world.
  2. The meaning of the communication is not simply what you intend, but also the response that you get.
  3. The mind and body affect each other.
  4. People respond to their experience, not to reality itself. The map is not the territory.
  5. Every behavior has a positive intention. Everyone is doing the best that they can with the resources they have available. People make the best choice they can at the time.
  6. Behavior is geared towards adaptation.
  7. Accept the person; change the behavior.
  8. Behavior and change are to be evaluated in terms of context and ecology.
  9. People have all the resources that they need to make the changes that they want. We already have all the resources we need or we can create them. There are no un-resourceful people, only un-resourceful states.
  10. Possible in the world and possible for me is only a matter of how.
  11. The system (person) with the most flexibility (choices) of behavior will have the most influence on the system.
  12. This is the Law of Requisite Variety
  13. There is no failure, only feedback.
  14. There are no resistant clients, only inflexible communicators.
  15. Having choice is better than not having choice. All procedures should be designed to increase choice and develop greater personal flexibility.
  16. All procedures should increase wholeness.

Only Through Congruence

For the holist “the whole is more then the sum of the parts”. In other words human behavior has its own properties that are not explicable in terms of the properties of the elements from which it is derived. NLP believes that only through understanding the wholeness and congruence of all elements can the mind be understood.

The Goal is to Help People

NLP offers another approach to correcting  the the general neurosis of our time, as stated by Carl Jung, “about a third of my cases are suffering from no clinically definable neurosis, but from the senselessness and emptiness of their lives. This can be described as the general neurosis of our time”. Just like Psychotherapy it has had it’s successes and failures. The system with the most flexibility will have the most influence.

As always, thanks for visiting. Dave

Alcoholism; It’s a Symptom of Narcissistic Personality Disorder

The Problem

The reason recovery rates are so low in AA is because,

  1. AA only recognizes the symptom not the underlying disease

Underlying Disease Not Known at the Time

According to Dr. Lance Dodes, in his book The Sober Truth: Debunking the Bad Science Behind 12-Step Programs and the Rehab Industry (co-written with Zachary Dodes),” when the Big Book was first published in 1939, it was met with wide skepticism in the medical community. The AMA called it a curious combination of organizing propaganda and religious exhortation. A year later, the Journal of Nervous and Mental Diseases described it as a rambling sort of camp-meeting confession of experiences … Of the inner meaning of alcoholism there is hardly a word. It is all surface material.”

Bill Wilson Was a Marketer

So how did AA gain such a place of privilege in American health-culture? How did a regimen so overtly religious in nature, with a 31 percent success rate at best, a five to 10 percent success rate at worst, and a five percent overall retention rate become the most trusted method of addiction-treatment in the country, and arguably the world? It’s a central question Dodes seeks to answer in The Sober Truth. And he begins at the very beginning.

Public Relations Genius

In 1951, based on what Dodes calls “the strength of self-reported success and popular articles” (The Saturday Evening Post was a major supporter), AA received a Lasker Award, which is “given by the American Public Health Association for outstanding achievement in medical research or public health administration.” This despite “no mention of any scientific study that might prove or disprove the organization’s efficacy,” writes Dodes. But it was nevertheless a marked moment AA’s history; the moment it entered the medical establishment, and by proxy, gained implicit trust from the American.

Supported by Judicial System

In 1989, America’s first drug court began sentencing “nonviolent drug offenders” to 12-step programs.You’ve been found to have a serious, Drug or Alcohol problem. In lieu of medication, psychotherapy, or a combination thereof, the Judge prescribes nightly meetings with a group of similarly afflicted individuals, and a set of 12 non-medical guidelines for recovery, half of which require direct appeals to God.

Your Medicine has become a Problem

Why is it usually a  Judge who recommends  treatment? Because you suffer from Narcissistic Personality Disorder, a grave and serious emotional and psychological problem, and you deny having any problems, not only to yourself, but to your family, doctors, and employers. Addiction is one of the most obvious symptoms of NPD.

They See Themselves As the Answer

This brings us to the present: an addiction-treatment landscape envisioned and engineered almost entirely by AA. The 12-Step Program is the law of the land. If you have a drinking problem in 2014, or a drug problem, or a gambling problem, your medically, socially, culturally, and politically mandated solution is a set of 12 steps. The only other options, as asserted by the Big Book, are “jails, institutions, and death.”

But Not the Solution

A report published by Alcoholism Treatment Quarterly in 2000 analyzed AA membership surveys taken from 1968 through 1996. On average, 81 percent of newcomers stopped attending meetings within the first month. After 90 days, only 10 percent remained. That figure was halved after a full year.

The Real Problem

The reason for this is Narcissistic Personality Disorder. The Narcissist has a great deal of grandiosity and defensiveness, which makes it difficult if not impossible for them to acknowledge problems and vulnerabilities.

Tell Them the Truth

From their first day in treatment, the focus should be, that the Addiction is just a symptom of the disease of Narcissism. Being honest and telling people that they suffer from a mental condition, that has been classified by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, gives people a concrete framework of their condition, instead of propaganda and religious exhortation. Only with a diagnosis can an Addict start evaluating the cause and effects, Narcissism has had on their lives.

Diagnosis Leads To Recovery

Recovery can still follow the 12-steps format, with  guidance by those who have found recovery, from this seemingly hopeless state of mind and body. .Basic Psychotherapy and Neural-Linguistic Programing techniques should be incorporated in the program or at least utilized by those who have recovered. They would be useful in helping people with Narcissistic Personality Disorder relate to others in a healthier and more compassionate way.

As always, thanks for visiting. Dave



Narcissistic Personality Disorder; The Bondage of Self

The Major Reason Behind Addiction

Having recovered from Alcoholism it’s my belief that Narcissistic Personality Disorder is the major reason for Addiction today. It is only when the addiction gets so bad, that treatment is demanded by family,work or the law, that the addict learns that the addiction is only a symptom of grave psychological problems.

No One Thinks They Have It

To quote the Mayo Clinic, “People with narcissistic personality disorder may not want to think that anything could be wrong, so they may be unlikely to seek treatment. If they do seek treatment, it’s more likely to be for symptoms of depression, drug or alcohol use”

Everybody Thinks It’s the Addiction

As I stated above, everyone comes in through the back door, it’s the addiction that drives them into treatment. For the few this treatment is with a Psychotherapist or an expensive stay at a Rehab, 30, 60, or 90 days or longer. For the majority the treatment consists of AA or NA, especially if they are court ordered.

Has To Be the Addicts Idea

The Mayo Clinic goes on to say,” But perceived insults to self-esteem may make it difficult to accept and follow through with treatment.” This is especially true if it’s their first experience getting sober. If they are being forced into treatment they will only do the minimum required, if that, then quit. It’s only after it becomes the addicts idea, to get sober, that they will even attempt it for real.

Once Your Sober You Realise

By real I mean stay in a program long enough to physically get sober, and become willing to attempt a program of recovery, most programs utilize the 12-step format developed by Bill Wilson and AA in the 1930s. It’s through working the program, that one comes to understand, that the addiction is only a symptom, to grave psychological problems.

Tell Them They Suffer From NPD

It’s at this point that instead of talking in generalities about higher powers, victimization and resentments the program would really benefit if they would just explain what they mean by the term,” bondage of self”. It’s my opinion that another name for the bondage of self could be Narcissistic Personality Disorder.

It Started Early

Although the cause of narcissistic personality disorder isn’t known, some researchers think that in biologically vulnerable children, parenting styles that are overprotective or neglectful may have an impact. Genetics and neurobiology also may play a role in development of narcissistic personality disorder.

It’s About Your Beliefs

How you developed the dis-empowering beliefs systems, as a child, is really secondary to understanding how these belief systems are manifesting themselves in your life. What beliefs are really holding you in bondage? It’s the dichotomy of holding the belief in your subconscious and consciously trying to deny it that makes a person miserable, wanting to self medicate.

Beliefs Cause Behaviors

Signs and symptoms of narcissistic personality disorder and the severity of symptoms vary, depending on the beliefs held. People with the disorder can:

  • Have an exaggerated sense of self-importance
  • Have a sense of entitlement and require constant, excessive admiration
  • Expect to be recognized as superior even without achievements that warrant it
  • Exaggerate achievements and talents
  • Be preoccupied with fantasies about success, power, brilliance, beauty or the perfect mate
  • Believe they are superior and can only associate with equally special people
  • Monopolize conversations and belittle or look down on people they perceive as inferior
  • Expect special favors and unquestioning compliance with their expectations
  • Take advantage of others to get what they want
  • Have an inability or unwillingness to recognize the needs and feelings of others
  • Be envious of others and believe others envy them
  • Behave in an arrogant or haughty manner, coming across as conceited, boastful and pretentious
  • Insist on having the best of everything — for instance, the best car or office

At the same time, people with narcissistic personality disorder have trouble handling anything they perceive as criticism, and they can:

  • Become impatient or angry when they don’t receive special treatment
  • Have significant interpersonal problems and easily feel slighted
  • React with rage or contempt and try to belittle the other person to make themselves appear superior
  • Have difficulty regulating emotions and behavior
  • Experience major problems dealing with stress and adapting to change
  • Feel depressed and moody because they fall short of perfection
  • Have secret feelings of insecurity, shame, vulnerability and humiliation

 Functioning Addict?

Wikipedia had this to say about NPD “according to the DSM-5: “Many highly successful individuals display personality traits that might be considered narcissistic. Only when these traits are inflexible, maladaptive, and persisting and cause significant functional impairment or subjective distress do they constitute narcissistic personality disorder.”[6] Due to the high-functionality associated with narcissism, some people may not view it as an impairment in their lives.[12] Although overconfidence tends to make individuals with NPD ambitious, it does not necessarily lead to success and high achievement professionally. These individuals may be unwilling to compete or may refuse to take any risks in order to avoid appearing like a failure.[6][7] In addition, their inability to tolerate setbacks, disagreements, or criticism, along with lack of empathy, make it difficult for such individuals to work cooperatively with others or to maintain long-term professional relationships with superiors and colleagues.[13]  

Feeling of Irritability and Discontent

It’s when these behaviors, cause significant impairment and subjective distress, to such a level, that a person will start looking for or accidentally finds, something that changes the way they feel. These “things” obviously vary and can take the form of food, sex, gambling etc. but most people find relief through drugs and alcohol.

It’s Through the Addiction That Recovery is Possible

Fortunately it’s through the abuse of the “medication” that drives a person into treatment, where they find out, if they are lucky, that their addiction is actually a symptom. Once they understand this, the real recovery can begin.

As always, thanks for visiting. Dave

Trust, Faith and Alcoholism

 Who Do You Trust

Who would you trust, someone who has studied painting for thirty years, or          someone who has painted for thirty years? Someone who has studied digging ditches, or someone who has dug ditches? Someone who has studied alcoholism for thirty years, or someone who has been an alcoholic for thirty years? Someone  who has studied recovery, or someone who has recovered?

Levels of Belief

There are people out there, who believe something because they have studied  it,  then there are people, who believe something because they know it. While  belief is good, there are levels of belief. The belief gained through experience will   always trump the belief gained through education. You can trust the belief gained by education. You can have faith in the belief gained by experience.

 Which is stronger trust or faith?

If you have lived with a dis-empowering belief for thirty years, you can have faith,that you know for fact, it’s dis-empowering. As opposed to the person that has studied a dis-empowering belief for thirty years, he may trust he knows, but he doesn’t have faith he knows. The arrogance of people with education, and a lot of letters following their names, never ceases to astound me.

Beware Experts

The EGO of these people is only surpassed, by how wrong they have been, about so many things. We will laugh when we look back fifty years from now, about what some of the experts believed was true. History has shown us this, over and over. Yet these experts, never stop pontificating, about something they trust to be true, simply because they have studied the problem, only to be proven wrong, by someone who has lived the problem.

It’s About Money

When I hear or read about an expert telling the world, that ALCOHOLISM is an incurable disease, I always wonder, how does he know? You can study it forever, but until you’ve lived it, you can’t really know. I’ve lived it for thirty years, and have seen hundreds of people, including myself, who have recovered from a seemingly hopeless case of mind and body. Is this expert going to tell me, I can’t trust my own experience or what I’ve seen with my own eyes. What is the motivation behind telling people there is no cure? It’s obvious, it’s money.

Call Me Anything but Narcissistic

I’m here to tell everyone, that ALCOHOLISM can be cured, and a lot more people would be cured, if the experts started focusing on the root cause instead of giving simplistic answers to complicated problems. Nobody likes to admit they are a Narcissist. and that’s the problem. It’s a disease that by it’s very nature, manipulates and deflects, peoples attention away from the real problem. It’s like their mantra is, call me anything , but don’t call me a Narcissist.

You Have A Personality Disorder

Well, the jig is up, the cat is out of the bag. Anybody who has read, the symptoms and behaviors, of NARCISSISTIC PERSONALITY DISORDER, only has to attend, say 90 meetings in 90 days, to be thoroughly convinced that this MENTAL ILLNESS is behind all addictions, especially ALCOHOLISM.

Alcoholism is Only a Symptom

The Alcoholism is only a symptom to the real problem. NPD is the “bondage of self”, that is making so many people so unhappy, that they reach for the first thing, that will give them some relief. Unfortunately in our society, that first thing, most easy to obtain, is alcohol. It’s my opinion that this “obsession of the mind”, is NPD, and the sooner people start realizing this, the sooner we will see dramatic improvements in recovery rates. I encourage anyone reading this to start looking at NPD with a critical eye.

Cause and Effect

All beliefs are limited by nature, (we don’t know, what we don’t know). All external events are filtered through our beliefs, which label and give them meaning. From this, emotions are created, that dictate how we respond or react, which leads to outcomes, which creates our lives.

Lack of Power was my Dilemma

Lack of Power is about holding dis-empowering beliefs. Identifying these beliefs is primary, how they got there is secondary. AA believes if you change the behavior and you can change the belief, true empowerment comes when you take responsibility for holding the belief. Responsible thinking is crucial to attaining recovery.

As always, thanks for visiting. Dave

Narcissistic Personality Disorder

The Goal is a Work/Life Balance

Is it possible to achieve a perfect Work/Life balance in today’s fast changing world, or is it just a brass ring tauntingly out of our reach? A lot of us think we have it and don’t and some think they don’t and do. If you suffer from a Narcissistic Personality Disorder, (NPD) it will be impossible for you to form anything close to a perfect Work/Life balance.

Denial Has to be Overcome

There are few occasions in life when we experience “satori” or enlightenment. And even if we experience it, it’s often short lived. What’s interesting, is that often, true long lasting enlightenment, only comes through failure. In order for a Narcissist to have satori, they must reach a level of failure, so complete, that makes it undeniable that something is seriously wrong.

The Seven Life Areas That Need To Be In Balance

People who have achieved a perfect Work/ Life balance have a clear prioritization of the seven most important life areas that comprise this balance. They know what they want in,

  1. Relationships
  2. Career and Personal Development
  3. Finances
  4. Health and Recreation
  5. Routine Responsibilities
  6. Contribution
  7. Inner Well-being

Narcissists Can’t Prioritize

Narcissists, either because of genetics or environment form a pattern of dis-empowering beliefs that made prioritizing these seven life areas not only improbable but impossible. Not only are these areas blurred, they overlap to the point of being almost indistinguishable and unrecognizable. Some areas even disappeared altogether.

A Few Dis-Empowering Beliefs

With only a few fundamental dis-empowering beliefs, see The Cause of Addictions; The Bondage of Self, the chance of achieving a perfect life work balance becomes problematic, if not impossible. These beliefs are at the core of the Narcissists understanding of what it is that constitutes reality. They only see their perception of reality, not reality itself. These beliefs could be;

  1. More is better
  2. Externals are to blame for my life conditions
  3. Idealism can’t coexist with realism
  4. There is only one existence and it’s physical
  5. We are separate and distinct from everyone else
  6. There’s an “US versus a “THEM”
  7. Feelings are real
  8. People can’t be trusted
  9. I’m not good enough or smart enough

No Work/Life Balance

With just a few fundamental dis-empowering beliefs, the Narcissist is generally unhappy, disappointed, depressed and often times addicted. Normal relationships are either unfulfilling or unattainable. There is no balance. People don’t enjoy being around you, and you have few true friends.

Denial is the Biggest Obstacle to Overcome

To make matters even worse, these dis-empowering beliefs are usually accompanied with a total lack of self awareness. It’s impossible for the Narcissist to believe that anything could be wrong, any criticism is met with emotional denials.

 The “Bondage of Self”

NPD is the Bondage of Self, the belief systems that Narcissists hold only reinforces their false sense of reality. In order to break through this perception and for enlightenment to occur, it takes failing in one or more of the seven life areas. Even then recovery through group and family therapy must be approached deliberately and with caution, focusing first on any addictions then working slowly towards changing the underlying beliefs that lead to the undesirable behaviors.

 The Most Common Symptoms of NPD.

  1. Exaggerated sense of self importance
  2. Sense of entitlement and a need for admiration
  3. Exaggerate achievements and talents
  4. Monopolize conversations, belittle and look down on others
  5. Take advantage of others to get what they want
  6. Envious of others and believe others envy them
  7. Significant interpersonal problems easily slighted
  8. Difficulty regulating emotions
  9. Poor stress management
  10. Secret feelings of insecurity, shame, vulnerability, self loathing
  11. Addictive personality, gambling, food, sex, drugs, alcohol
  12. External Locus of Control

It Starts with Awareness

Failure is often the catalysis for change, and developing awareness is the first step needed, in order to change. There are different programs that follow a set number of steps for recovery. NLP has seven, AA has twelve

Neural Linguistics Programing Steps

  1. Developing Awareness
  2. Discovery
  3. Ownership
  4. Exposure
  5. Intention
  6. Action
  7. Integration

A Formal Therapy Program

Going through a formal therapy program helps the Narcissist better understand how they experience life. Instead of creating a false self (ego) in order to deal with life from the outside in, dis-empowered and limited. They come to realize that life emanates from the inside out, empowered and unlimited. That it’s through our spiritual or authentic self, our thoughts that create feelings, that lead to action and outcomes.

We Experience Life on Five Levels

  1. Physical
  2. Emotional
  3. Rational
  4. Volitional
  5. Spiritual


All Religions hold the same basic truth. That we were made in the image of our creator. Given a divine mind that will manifest anything we believe. We have free will to believe anything we wish. Once a belief is placed in the Habitual Mind the Unconscious Universe will manifest it, it has no choice, for it is fertile. Our thoughts are based upon our beliefs, they are cause, the effect is our life. Don’t like your life? Change your thoughts.To change your thoughts, change your beliefs.

For more information on Recovery options visit www. or read

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As always, thanks for visiting. Dave







Neuro-Linguistic Programming; The Pre-Suppositions

NLP stands for Neuro-Linguistic Programming, a name that encompasses the three most influential components involved in producing human experience: neurology, language and programming.  ).NLP is a pragmatic school of thought – an ‘epistemology’ – that addresses the many levels involved in being human.

NLP is a multi-dimensional process that involves the development of behavioral competence and flexibility, but also involves strategic thinking and an understanding of the mental and cognitive processes behind behavior.

NLP provides tools and skills for the development of states of individual excellence, but it also establishes a system of empowering beliefs and presuppositions about what human beings are, what communication is and what the process of change is all about.

In essence, all of NLP is founded on six fundamental presuppositions:

1. The Map is Not the Territory. As human beings, we can never know reality. We can only know our perceptions of reality. It is generally not reality that limits us or empowers us, but rather our map of reality.

2. The Past Doesn’t Equal the Future.   These systems are based on certain ‘self-organizing’ principles and naturally seek optimal states of balance or homeostasis.Believing that we ar doomed to repeat the past, leads to a lack of self-esteem and a general feeling of hopelessness.

3. People Aren’t Broken.The idea of original sin is a dis-empowering belief. Part of religious orthodoxy in the west, this fallacy is not prevalent in most eastern religions.

4. Everything is Achievable. Just because we don’t know how, doesn’t mean it’s not possible. The word impossible is a dis-empowering belief that minimizes hope. You can achieve by forming appropriate strategies.

5. Empowerment Comes Via Responsibility. Dependence upon how others see us, feel about us or approve of us affects all our actions. There are no gurus. True maturity is the acceptance of responsibility.

6. People Respond to Perception Not Reality. Our minds filter the world to agree with our beliefs. As a man thinks so shall he be. Just because we assume doesn’t mean it is.

Scientist theorize that the world pushes two billion bits of information a second. Humans only adsorb 134,000 bits per second, using our five senses and our beliefs which automatically eliminate bits that don’t conform.We eliminate more then we take in. We then compare this collage to our mental library of beliefs, to determine what it means, and how it makes us feel, only then do we respond. Our reality is all about the story in our heads.

All of the models and techniques of NLP are based on the combination of the above per-suppositions. In the belief system of NLP it is not possible for human beings to know objective reality. Rather, the goal is to create the richest map possible that respects the systemic nature and ecology of ourselves and the world we live in.

The people who are most effective are the ones who have a map of the world that allows them to perceive the greatest number of available choices and perspectives. NLP is a way of enriching the choices that you have and perceive  in the world around you.

Excellence comes from having many choices. Wisdom comes from having multiple perspectives. Through the years, NLP has developed some very powerful tools and skills for communication and change in a wide range of professional areas including: counseling, psychotherapy, education, health, creativity, law, management, sales, leadership and parenting.

NLP is now in its fith decade as a field of study and has evolved considerably since its beginnings in the mid 1970s. Over the years, NLP has literally spread around the world and has touched the lives of millions of people.

Since the 1990’s, a new generation of NLP has been developing. This form of NLP addresses generative and systemic applications and focuses on high level issues such as identity, vision and mission.

Follow me as I continue to plumb the depths of this Science, extrapolating the key components, for your review and consideration.

As always, thanks for visiting. Dave





Best Weight Loss Diet

What Experts Say

Dr. Kate Craigen is the clinical director of binge eating and bariatric support services. Waltham, Mass. What many consider the three best weight loss diets sold today she had this to say.

Well Funded Marketing Campaigns

“Millions of Americans turn to these types of programs, drawn in by marketing campaigns built on the promise of positive change for those seeking to lose weight. “It’s easy!” some say. “I lost X pounds in 30 days!” They sell visions of a ‘new life’ where weight loss is guaranteed and accompanied by happiness, acceptance and vitality.

Most Weight Loss Programs Fail

In most cases, weight loss programs fail to result in actual weight loss: Here’s the sobering reality: diets lead to weight loss in only a small fraction of people. Genes and metabolism play a significant role in the way your body gains and loses weight. Programs like Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig or Nutria-System may not work like they promise to, even if you’re following all the rules. The sheer disappointment and devastation of trying so hard – without the desired results – can invoke feelings of depression and low self-esteem.

Fails to Keep the Weight Off

In fact, programs like Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig and Nutria- System not only fail to result in sustained weight loss for most people, they can make you more prone to binge eat. And it has nothing to do with your commitment to the program”.

It’s Not Cheap

Lets not forget that these diets are also expensive.

  • The basic program for Weight Watchers is $11.70/week
  • The basic program for Nutria-System is $72.46/week
  • The basic program for Jenny Craig is $82.55/week

Yesterdays Fad

Those of you old enough remember the diet pill craze  Fen-Phen, This was the cocktail form of two separate drugs , Fenfluramine and Phentermine, which were separately approved by the FDA for short term treatment of Obesity.

Taking Chances

The combination was never approved  because of unknown side effects. But that didn’t stop Doctors from writing 18 million prescriptions for Phen-Fen in 1996, and 2.4 million more for the similar drug Redux, before reports of dangerous side effects led to the “voluntary” withdrawal at the FDA’s insistence.

Not Ethical

Not all the people taking Fen-Phen were clinically obese or even close, which is one of the reasons they were seeking medical advise at the mini-mall, instead at their usual Doctors office.

A Dangerous Diet

I only bring this up because we’re seeing a similar fad taking place today, and it’s why you should never try the HCG Diet Plan. The Diet has been called dangerous, fraudulent and illegal by the FDA.

HCG is a Fertility Drug

As a prescription medication HCG is used mainly to treat fertility issues. HCG is not approved for over the counter use, nor has it been proved to work for weight loss. Often called the HCG 500 Calorie Diet, it’s easy to see how the HCG diet results in weight loss, but according to experts simply cutting calories to lose weight will almost certainly backfire.

500 Calories a Day

The diet consists of taking shots of 125 units of HCG six out of seven days for eight weeks (costing from( $200 to $600 each) and only eating two 250 calorie meals a day. No exercise, no oil and only one tablespoon of milk every 24 hours.

A Placebo

When it first came out in the 1970’s the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition proved the HCG diet was (and still is) ineffectual. A second study done in 1990 by the South African Medical Journal showed HCG no more effective then a placebo.

Starving The Body

Going to 500 calories a day results primarily in weight loss to muscle rather then fat.This sets the body up for a slowed metabolic rate and weight gain. Since the diet is only temporary, you gain everything back and then some.

How Many Times Have You Lost the Same Ten Pounds

Everyone agrees that yo-yo dieting is a terrible thing, and those that have done it would be hard pressed to disagree. Whether or not it’s physiologically more difficult to lose the same 10 pounds for the fifth or sixth time, it is certainly harder on the head.

New Research

Doctors are now discovering the important role our Endocannabinoid System plays in fine tuning our physiological functions. It promotes homeostasis, affecting everything from sleep, appetite, pain, inflammation, memory, mood and even reproduction.

Improves Metabolism

Basically the Endocannabinoid System helps modulate the regulation of homeostasis across all major body systems, ensuring all systems work in concert with one another.

All Natural Ingredients

Our Weight-Loss Coffee’s, all natural, proprietary blend of ingredients, formulated with natural appetite suppressants, feel good ingredients, detox components and powered by a patented antioxidant, improves the ability of our neural receptors to better metabolize calories, promote brain health and crush cravings.

Costs the Same as Starbucks

While experts refute the claims that you can lose weight drinking weight-loss coffee, thousands of people are seeing amazing results, not just with weight loss but with mood and mental clarity. Quit listening to the Diet Gurus and instead of going to Starbucks,  give our coffee a try, what have you got to lose?

As always, thanks for visiting. Dave



Obesity in America

Biggest Health Issue Facing America

In his book, “The Coming Jobs War”, Jim Clifton states that one of the biggest health issues facing America is the problem of Obesity. He states, “The CDC concludes that more than two-thirds of American adults, aged 20 and older, are simply to fat.Approximately one-third of Americans are a healthy weight, one-third are overweight, and one-third are obese. This is a significant contributor to roughly 70% of the $2.5 trillion annual healthcare expense.” It’s probably higher now considering that Clifton’s book was published in 2011.

The Cannabinoid System

In researching the problem of obesity in America, I was surprised to find that new medical studies have shown that weight gain is not only a matter of how much we eat, but more importantly how our bodies metabolize the food we eat. In the book “You Staying Young” by Dr.s Michael Roizen and Mehmet Oz They go into great detail about the chemical system in the body called the Cannabinoid System. They state that this system not only dictates how well our bodies metabolize food, but also how hungry we feel and even the foods we crave.

Blocked Neural Receptors

It has to do with the neural pathways in our brains and throughout our bodies, and the fact that a lot of the neural receptors in our bodies  are closed or blocked. When these neural receptors are closed we simply do not metabolize food as well as we should and as such always feel hungry.

Best Kept Secret In America

Scientists are just now starting to understand these processes, but considering the book “You Staying Young” was published in 2007, I’m surprised how little publicity this issue has gotten, and how few doctors have even heard about it, considering it directly affects the #1 health problem facing America today.

Big Business Has A Vested Interest In Keeping It Quiet

Could it be, that because this research refutes the basic claims of the billion dollar Diet and Nutrition industry, that this information is being censored? Is this just another example were big business impedes the health of America?  Diet and Nutrition are big business in America, and they have a vested interest in refuting any research that runs counter to their firm beliefs, that weight gain is primarily based on how much you eat and exercise.

No matter what your age or avocation, I’m convinced that everyone has a best seller in them. Don’t die with your story inside you. There is a Website that will train you, filled with a community of like minded people, to help and encourage you,  in achieving your goals. Check out my custom sign up page. It’s free to try it out, what have you got to lose.

As always, thanks for visiting. Dave