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For Professionals With Substance Abuse Challenges - Conclusion

The philosophy that Triumph believes is that treatment needs to encompass all areas of your life to be effective.

The holistic approach allows for an inner sense of balance, and addresses all the challenges that an addict faces, not just with the substance(s) of choice. Triumph staff believe that treatment should not be punitive at all. They want us to feel good about who we are so that we don’t feel the need to run or escape. That doesn’t happen in facilities where shaming often occurs and people are forced into facing other addicts and their judgment with very little one on one support.. They helped build me up and showed me that I can achieve anything when I put my mind to it.

The first day we drove down to the off-site location we had both determined would be beneficial. One of the great aspects of Triumph’s 90-day treatment program is that the first two weeks are unlike any other program I had ever even heard of. Together, we determined a destination that would take us away from daily life and into an environment designed to be peaceful and healing. On the drive, my counselor let me rant and rave about all the current challenges going on in my life. My job, my fiancée, my drinking, my excuses and my poor me attitude. I was exhausted by the end of our 5-hour drive. It was something that I have not been able to do in so long. Just get it all out without being judged. It is exactly what I needed. That first night we mad

e dinner and sat around the fire and talked about our plan for the next two weeks. We decided to make a schedule for each day. We wanted to include exercise, spirituality, meditation, therapy, addiction coaching, healthy eating, contacting our support system and fun activities into our daily routine.

The next day we started the 90-day treatment program. It was great! I was able to design it exactly the way I wanted and how I saw fit. During the first two weeks, in our remote location away from substances, we got up in the morning and would journal, meditate and go for a 20-minute spiritual walk, then we made breakfast and then went for a 6-mile hike.

The entire time we talked about my past, my challenges and the underlying reasons for my desires to escape. I got more therapy on the way to our location and on the six-mile hike than I had received in total at the three treatment facilities that I attended. I could tell at that point that this was going to be a very different experience.

Over the next two weeks I had learned more about myself and the underlying reasoning for my addictions than I ever knew possible. I was forced to address issues, virtually, with my parents, my siblings, and my ex-fiancé. It was not easy accepting responsibility for hurting so many people but moreso, also expressing how I had been hurt in the process. I had access to my counselor 24 hours a day, 7 days a week; that is totally unheard of in the world of rehabilitation and treatment! We basically began to deconstruct my life and put the pieces back together in the first two weeks.

We evaluated each major area of my life and we looked at what was working, wasn’t working and what changes needed to be made (and the priority of those changes). We set goals in each major life area; personal and professional relationships, mental and physical health & wellbeing, and more. We made the goals attainable and realistic. While on the first two weeks of treatment with Triumph, we actually began to practice these goals every day for that entire two weeks. The ability to develop this amazing routine while away from everyday life allowed me to truly develop healthy habits that would eventually lead to an extremely successful healing journey.

I understood why I was wanting to escape and all the devastation it has caused me in my life. This time, I was quitting for me! In the past it has always been about wanting to quit to please my family, my wife, my girlfriend. For the first time in my life I had a plan with concrete goals for each major area of my life, and now I have a support team that is going to help me through this challenging time over the course of the next few months.

By the end of the remote two weeks I felt like a completely different person. I felt amazing physically because I had been exercising and sober for two weeks with no hangovers. It was so very refreshing. I now had the tools and a plan to achieve success and knew I had the support of a professional counselor. I understood that this was not the end of the journey but just the beginning. I was so incredibly excited to create an aftercare and relapse prevention plan that was specifically designed for me.

That includes things like:

  • continuing to see a therapist two times a week

  • attending a smart recovery group 3 times a week

  • going to my church’s addictions group one time a week

  • attending an online support group

  • attending a codependency no more group 2xs per week

  • daily exercise

  • meditate for 20 minutes daily

  • I have started eating healthy and monitoring my intake of sugars

My relapse prevention plan helps me to identify situations and triggers that might put me in a vulnerable spot and it allows me to avoid potential relapses.

I get triggered in the following situations:

  • When I hear upsetting news regarding my job, partner, death

  • Financial challenges

  • When I am feeling overwhelmed

  • When I get lonely or bored

  • When someone hurts me personally.

  • When my family is talking about me behind my back.

My plan for addressing strong urges. If after I tried one of them I was still struggling I would move on to the next step in the plan. It was very effective.

  • Take a few deep breaths

  • Meditate

  • Go for a walk or a run

  • Exercise

  • Listen to music

  • Call (support person #1))

  • Call (support person #2) if #1 isn’t available

  • Call (support person #3) if #2 isn’t available

  • Go to an on-line support group

  • Find a meeting to attend in person

  • Admit yourself to the nearest hospital

I am not sure how to express the passion I felt during this experience. In the first two weeks of the 90-day program, I completely changed my world in ways that I never believed possible. In the time after the two-week excursion portion of my journey, I was met daily with support and encouragement from Triumph. We continued on with our counseling, both in person and through telehealth, I continued taking care of myself physically, mentally and emotionally and I truly was beginning to realize that my addiction was being overcome with phenomenal positive force. I faced my demons in a safe environment and I gained new skills that will help me to continue beating my addiction. It was the most rewarding and the hardest thing I have ever done in my life. This full program is amazing for people that struggle with an addiction but quite frankly every single person should be able to truly evaluate their life and decide if they need to make some tweaks. It’s a game changer.

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