What’s the first thing that usually comes to mind when you hear about addiction recovery? That’s right. The good old 12-Step Program. While the program has proven to be effective in treatments and even changing lives, there are so many more ways to effectively help a drug abuse victim turn from being sick to better. In this episode, Dr. Barry Reiman shares how they innovated in helping people with addiction on different personal levels and ultimately helping them feel and become better. Dr. Reiman, the VP of Business Development for Recovery Unplugged Treatment Center, has developed an acute understanding and passion for treating those struggling with substance use disorders through his personal experience with addiction. Tune in to learn all about the psychological and business side of the addiction treatment industry!
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Recovery Unplugged: Changing The Game In The Addiction Treatment Industry With Barry Reiman, Psy.D.
Dr. Barry Reiman is the VP of Business Development for Recovery Unplugged Treatment Center. He’s also been a featured guest on such daytime television shows as Dr. Phil, The Doctors, and Face the Truth with Vivica A. Fox. Working in the field of addiction treatment for close to two decades, Dr. Barry has developed an acute understanding and passion for treating those struggling with substance use disorders.
Dr. Barry’s career in the treatment field stems from his personal connection to addiction. He has been in recovery since June of 1996 and has dedicated his personal and professional life to facilitating change in the lives of those looking for a way out of their addiction. His passion and thirst for knowledge have led him to become one of the treatment industry’s leading influencers.
Dr. Barry, thank you for being here. It’s delightful to see you face to face again.
Thank you for having me. I’m honored to be on your show.
I was hoping you could start us off by telling us a little bit about how you got into the work you’re doing and what drives your passion for it.
I’m posed that a lot because you probably know from choosing the path you’ve chosen, which is a helping profession. I can’t speak for you, but the majority of people who get into psychology may or may not have some type of issue themselves whether it is serious or non-serious. Maybe you felt better from seeking help and decided that was going to be your path.
My story has a few prongs. I’m in long-term recovery. I got sober on June 19th, 1996. It’s been 26 and a half years that I’ve been doing this, but I didn’t choose this life. It chose me. What I mean by that is you hear it said a lot when you’re trying to “convince” somebody through an intervention to get better. You often hear that you really have to want this to get it. That wasn’t my story. I didn’t wake up on June 19th, 1996, and say, “Today is going to be the day that I would love to give up the love of my life,” which was a substance.
I was intervened on. I was seeing this guy. His name was Dr. Rick Harris. I bring up his name because he plays a vital role in my story. I was twenty years old, two months shy of my 21st birthday, when I got sober, but it wasn’t my first attempt to change my ways. When I was nineteen years old, I was put into an intensive outpatient program. I wanted no part of it at all. I used the entire time. I was faking my drug tests and my drug screens.
My parents had me start seeing Dr. Rick. I would see him weekly. I thought I was pulling the covers over his head. Fast forward, things got out of control for me. I’m 6’3” tall. I was 140 pounds soaking wet and having grand mal seizures in and out of hospitals. I did not even want to stop at that point. I had a girlfriend at that time who had been away for a couple of months studying abroad. She came back and saw what I looked like. She heard stories from my roommates about what I had been doing and contacted my sister.
I had an appointment on Wednesday, June 19th, 1996, with Dr. Harris. When I showed up to my appointment, my mother, father, and sister were all sitting in the waiting room. I said, “The gig is up.” I got brought in there and they did their whole intervention schtick. I knew at that moment that I didn’t have much of a choice.
I was not a fully self-supporting adult with a career and with many options, so I made a deal. I was going to go into treatment and give the whole thing not using for 90 days. On the 91st day, I could re-evaluate. If I didn’t look better, feel better, and my relationships hadn’t improved, I could always go back out. Drugs and alcohol would always be there. We were not going to go through prohibition again.
I say this using the keyword, “I did not want to stop.” There’s a belief out there, and it’s still prevalent, that people think you have to want to stop. Sometimes, you can desire fewer consequences as a motivator for change. That was my story. I went into detox and treatment. After about 30 days or so, I got out and started attending some outpatient groups. I started attending these NA and AA classes, which I thought were a cult, but I was stubborn and I said, “I’m going to make it to that 90-day mark.”People think you have to want to stop to actually stop it. But sometimes, having a desire for fewer consequences can also serve as a motivator for change. Click To Tweet
I can’t tell you what day it was in those 90 days, but there was a day when I found myself not thinking about using and it was already four hours into the day. There were days in a row when I legitimately started to feel better. By the time I made it to that 90-day mark, I looked better and felt better. My relationships had improved. Like a good addict, my brain said, “If I feel this good at 90 days, I wonder how I feel at six months.” Recovery got me before I got it.
I continued on my journey. I saw Dr. Harris probably for the first two years or so that I was in recovery. It was weekly and then it was every other week. It’s amazing what therapy can do when you’re not going to a session high, are open to change, and have the ability to get vulnerable. It is next to impossible to do therapy with a person who is consistently under the influence.
I equate it to a swimming pool. I live in Florida so we have a lot of in-the-ground pools. In the ‘80s and ‘70s, they used to use this stuff called Marcite to line the pool before they put water in it. What happened with Marcite is over the years, it would start to get scaly to the consistency of a sidewalk. When you’re a kid and you’re diving in the pool, and your knee hits the ground, you were coming up bloody so they invented something called Diamondbrite. Diamondbrite has promised to stay smooth for the life of the pool. Let’s say you have that old pool and you want to replace the Marcite with Diamondbrite. What’s the first thing you have to do?
Take the Marcite off.
How do you get to the Marcite? What’s the first thing you have to do to get to the pool?
Once we drain the pool, only then can we get to what lies underneath. The substance, whether it’s alcohol or other substances, is the water in the swimming pool. When you’re coming to therapy, you’re treating the symptoms and not the underlying issue of somebody under the influence. I made these amazing discoveries in therapy. I went back to school and finished my undergrad degree.
I remember contemplating going into the field of Psychology. I didn’t want to be a psychologist. That wasn’t my aspiration when I was 5 or 6 years old. I wanted to be a Marine biologist. Somewhere in my active addiction, when I left the University of Florida in Gainesville after two years and came home because of my addiction, I enrolled at FIU in Miami. I was in Architecture.
I had no clue what I wanted to do but it was attending these NA meetings and therapy. It was reaching my hand out and helping others that filled me with joy and propelled me on the plane of getting myself into a helping profession. I remember right at about the two-year mark, I was wrapping up with Dr. Harris. On my last session with him, I happened to be his last session of the day as well. This was my very last session with Dr. Harris from the age of 19 to 22 when I saw him. At this point, I’m still finishing up undergrad and I’m contemplating grad school, but I had no solid plans. I expressed to him that maybe I wanted to get into something like this.
Long story short, we were leaving his office that day. He took me out of the employee exit because he had a lockup. I was his last session of the day. He had those wooden mailboxes or those inner office mailboxes that have all the slots with the people’s names on the bottom. I looked at that and said, “I didn’t realize you have so many psychologists working for you.” He’s like, “Maybe your name will be up there one day.” I was like, “Whatever.” I didn’t think anything of it, but I remember him saying that.
Fast forward, I finish undergrad and I apply to graduate school. I get into a Doctorate program. I go through. I do all my coursework. It was four years of coursework and it was time to apply for doctoral internships. I apply in Chicago at Joliet, the prison. I applied in Dixon, Illinois at the prison there. I did Forensic Psychology. I then applied to DC. I don’t remember exactly where. I then said, “Let me apply somewhere locally here in South Florida.” I apply to Nova Southeastern University. They had a consortium, which was 4 different sites in 1.
I’m sure you’re familiar with the internship process. You go on these interviews and then you create your preferred destinations. They have a matching program. Wherever you match, you match. I fly to Illinois, DC, and California. I walk into Nova Southeastern University and I get into that room. I open the door and Dr. Harris is sitting in there. I hadn’t seen him in four years. He goes, “Barry?” I said, “Dr. Harris?” He recused himself from the interview. Long story short, I wind up matching at Nova for my doctoral internship. I do my year-long doctoral internship and it comes time to do my residency. Guess where I do my residency.
Was it the same place?
It was Dr. Harris’ private practice. My name made it up in the mailbox. Throughout that entire story, I had to do a dissertation. My dissertation was a program design. I took my passion, which is addiction treatment, and created an intensive outpatient program utilizing evidence-based methodologies. It was neuro biofeedback and interactive journaling. My chairperson was Dr. Harris.
Usually, when somebody does a dissertation and they’re doing a program design, you fulfill the requirements and the book sits on the shelf. We decided to take my dissertation and open a program that was created by myself. We named it the Center for Proven Recovery or CPR because it was using evidence-based methodologies, which wasn’t prevalent in the treatment of addiction and mental health. There were a lot of treatment centers opening around this time, but it was by people who were 3 or 6 months sober, whose parents had a lot of money, and all it was was twelve steps. There was no actual treatment.
Dr. Harris and I wound up becoming 50/50 partners in the venture, which made the introduction for me to the business side of addiction treatment. I was still running the groups and doing the therapy, but I was learning the business side of addiction treatment. Fast forward, that program had success for about three years until Dr. Harris, myself, and another person opened a 27-bed residential treatment center. In the interim between my residency and by the time this program opened, I worked in his private practice seeing patients every day.
My story is a little unique because although I’m a doctor of psychology, I don’t practice anymore. I’m pretty much fully immersed in the business side of addiction treatment. That doesn’t mean I don’t use my skills or I don’t do interventions anymore. It doesn’t mean that every once in a while, I won’t run a group. I’m just not on the clinical team. I had to make that decision because I’m a big people person. This is my story and I felt like I could be helping more people than sitting one session at a time for 45 to 50 minutes back-to-back. I felt that I had a message to get out there, be it in front of a group, an audience, an employer group, or at a conference.
Like in the Integrative Mental Health Summit. We had that.
I was speaking at the conference. I fell in love with business development and convincing clients to come into treatment because I know from my own personal story. I don’t care if you want to get better. I didn’t want to get better, but here I am more than half of my life later still in recovery. I’ve been in the addiction treatment industry for many years. It’s been a passion. I don’t get burnt out. I’m in love with the program we have, which we can get into.
It’s a unique treatment facility that’s all based on music. It’s not hokey or where you just come in, play the guitar, and get better. It’s very clinically oriented, but music immersive, which makes it an engaging experience for any client that comes through our door. That was my story about how I got involved in this profession and what the evolution has looked like since entering the field.
Is that 27-bed facility that you opened, the one that you’re still working with?
No. We opened that in 2013. We grew that program from 1 facility and 27 beds to 5 facilities and 450 beds. In 2016, we attempted to sell. It’s a very sad story. I’ll condense it. We closed in early 2018. We couldn’t sustain it. It grew too big. Payroll was too large. There was a lot of fraud going on in South Florida at that time. The insurance companies couldn’t tell the good operators from the bad, so they blanketly audited all the facilities in South Florida. It was Aetna, Cigna, Blue Cross, United Healthcare, and Humana. It was all of the larger insurance companies. Instead of getting paid in 20 to 30 days, it was taking 6 to 9 months.
Unfortunately, we couldn’t sustain it. Our biggest mistake was we did not diversify out of this market in South Florida. Recovery Unplugged, who I’ve been with for a couple of years and who opened two months before my other facility did. It was a competitor of mine and was able to sustain that time because the second facility they opened was in Austin, Texas, and not in South Florida. They had the financial support of what that program was bringing in to keep them afloat here in Florida where all five of our facilities were within a 50-mile radius of each other. Dr. Harris is still at his private practice. He’s also running a small ED IOP or an Eating Disorder Intensive Outpatient Program. We chat every now and again.
How long have you been with the Recovery Unplugged?
Five years in 2022.
Is that a residential program?
Recovery Unplugged is all levels of care starting with medical detox. We have true residential. We have PHP or better known as the Partial Hospitalization Program, and then we have IOP or Intensive Outpatient Program. We’re headquartered here in South Florida and we have two programs. Our headquarters is in Fort Lauderdale, which is also the site of our lower levels of care, PHP and IOP.
For those who are unaware, what’s the difference between partial hospitalization and intensive outpatient?
Let’s start at the top, which is medical detox. If somebody is drinking or taking benzos daily, whether it’s Xanax, Valium, or Klonopin, and they were to stop cold turkey, they can die from those two substances, alcohol or benzos. Opiates, heroin, oxy, Roxi, and Percocet, you could be using those daily. If you stop cold turkey, you’re going to get very sick but it’s not lethal.
There are two main substances that require a medical detox, which are alcohol and benzos. When somebody comes into detox, they are given what’s called a taper. If someone is coming in because they’ve been drinking every day and can’t stop on their own, to avoid withdrawal symptoms whether it’s going to be a seizure, delirium, or tremors, we will give them Librium. They start out at a certain dose. The next day, that dose gets lowered a little bit more, and then on the third day, it gets lowered a little bit more.
Typically, detox is about seven days. It’s a safe way to come off of a substance that can be lethal if you go cold turkey. You’re monitored 24/7 by nursing. Your vitals are taken every fifteen minutes. We keep our clients comfortable. A client will drop down to what’s called true residential. There’s a common misconception between residential and PHP. True residential means you’re eating, sleeping, and having treatment all under the same roof or on the same campus. There’s also 24-hour nursing that’s available for residential clients. You have to meet certain ASAM criteria to meet per insurance companies for residential.
The typical length of stay insurance-based is usually 10 to 14 days in true res. Once the care manager at the insurance company feels that their client is stable enough to step down, they will step down to what’s called PHP or Partial Hospitalization Program. At that point, clients are in groups. It varies with us. It’s six days a week. They come to our clinical building in the mornings from 9:00 AM until about 3:30 PM, at which time we have vans that will take them to our residence that we have five minutes away from our center. We still have what’s called BHTs or Behavioral Health Techs that monitor the clients. Clients can have their cell phones at that level of care. It’s a level of outpatient but it’s a very structured outpatient level.
When you say the buses take them someplace, are they taking them to a halfway house or residential?
We have our own PHP housing. In Florida, it is on the beach.
These people are not going home to their own residences?
No, unless they’re local. They can commute from home if they are local or they have a place to go.
The partial means that they’re in your building from 9:00 AM until 3:00 PM and involved in this intensive treatment process.
That is correct. In the evenings, we’ll take them to twelve-step meetings, to the gym, or grocery shopping so they can fill the fridges in their apartments. They cook for themselves. It’s having somebody adjust from the highest level of care. We don’t push them out into the world. Once somebody has been in PHP for 2 to 3 weeks, they will then step down to IOP or Intensive Outpatient Program. At that level of care, we have 5 days a week of IOP or 3 days a week of IOP. The groups are run for three hours at a time, typically in the evenings. At this point, they could be working, coming to groups, and attending in the evening, but they still get an individual therapy session every week.
The treatment itself, like detox, is a slow taper back into the world. It’s done in stages, and it’s done like that on purpose. For most people who are coming into treatment or needing treatment, their coping skills are in the toilet. Think about how their coping skills have been to self-medicate. Everyday stressors that normies deal with that have been living life on life’s terms for a long time without abusing substances can seem monumental for somebody who’s coming back into the world. We do our best to titrate them through the levels, which in turn helps them adjust. It’s not the story with everybody. There are some people that are too freaking busy that they need to be detoxed and they want to go back home.
We are offering something that is cool. It’s a virtual component. We have a virtual intensive outpatient program that we’re running in the four states in which we have facilities. All of our in-person places are for substance use disorder. It’s primary substance use as opposed to some facilities that are primary mental health. With our virtual program, we have a few different tracks. We have primary substance use, faith-based substance use track, DBT track, and a primary mental health virtual IOP, in which you don’t have to have any history or ever have been on a substance. You can be dealing with depression, anxiety, mood disorder, personality disorder, or trauma.
You will have to meet the criteria for intensive outpatient. That means if we have somebody that calls us up that’s actively psychotic or delusional, they’re going to need a higher level of care, which we can’t provide. If they’re stabilized on their medications or antipsychotics or they’re your average everyday person that’s looking for a little bit more support, that’s going to give you a little bit more than a one-on-one hourly session once a week with a clinician. This is 3 hours, 3 times a week virtually. It’s become popular with employers who are into wellness.
Wellness is a big topic now. Employers hate to lose their employees for 30 days at a time and have someone go out on FMLA. This is a way to offer more support for somebody that can’t pick up and leave their life for 30 days. They can do it from the comfort of their own home. Our facilities are here in Florida. We’re also in Austin, Texas, Nashville, Tennessee, and five miles outside of DC in Northern Virginia. It is in a little town called Annandale. Those are all of our locations across the country.
With all of these different levels of care you’re talking about, are all of them integrating the music component?
Yes. One of the partners at our facility was a touring member of the band Aerosmith. His name is Richie Supa. Richie works out of our Fort Lauderdale facility. He runs two groups a week for the clients. All of our facilities have live sound stages and recording studios. Here’s the kicker. Only about 10% of our clients are musically inclined. That’s it. 90% can’t hold a tune or strum a guitar, but 100% of the clients who come to us all have a love for music. I didn’t say they all have a love for opera or country music. To this day, I have not met somebody yet that doesn’t at least like music in one form or another.
What we found is music is a mood changer. There is no doubt about it. Music affects the same areas of the brain that drugs and alcohol do. We talk about things like echoic memory. I’m sure you, as a psychologist, know what echoic memory is. For the audience, echoic memory means it can happen through a wide variety of our senses, namely smell and sound. You can walk in somewhere and it smells like something. Right away, you’re like, “That reminds me of my grandma’s house.” Somewhere in your brain stored up there, you had that distinct smell of your grandma’s house. It could be a song that comes on and you’re like, “That reminds me of seventh-grade roller skating at Galaxy Skateway.”Music is a mood changer. It affects the same areas of the brain that drugs and alcohol do. Click To Tweet
What we found was if we know that music is associated with mood and how heavily these memories are tied together, we could do a lot of good work in the treatment of addiction and mental health by utilizing music. That doesn’t mean that we don’t do cognitive behavioral therapy. It doesn’t mean that we don’t do dialectical and behavioral therapy or we don’t have clinicians who are trained in EMDR because we do. All of our clinicians are licensed Master’s level clinicians. They’re well-equipped to handle clients who have co-occurring disorders.
Music is used more as a catalyst to connect and engage with clients and break down barriers. Music is not used to treat clients. We don’t put clients in a room for seven hours a day, play music, let them choose their soundtracks, and call that treatment. Recovery Unplugged is a clinically oriented program that weaves music throughout every facet of what we do.
We have specialized groups. We do lyrical analysis. We have a group called Open Mic. In the morning, we do a pump-up or mic check. There is a lot of uniqueness when it comes to seeking treatment at Recovery Unplugged. There are plenty of good treatment centers out there and great facilities. The majority are what we talked about offline, which is cookie-cutter.
Your mornings start out with a goal group. Everybody gets in a circle and everyone sets a goal for themselves for the day. Bob says, “Today, I’m going to be honest.” Mary says, “Today, I’m going to be willing.” Joe says, “Today, I’m going to persevere. That’s my goal for the day.” It’s an effing boring experience. When we get people who come into Recovery Unplugged, they’re never asking when their discharge date is. When they find out, they’re always asking if they can extend, even that person who didn’t want to be there in the first place like myself. It is such an incredible experience.
Unplugged has been open for a couple of years. We had a five-year longitudinal study conducted by Nova Southeastern University where I happened to have done my internship. We had interns that were in our office five days a week. We had a five-year study done, which shows our sober rates are four times the national average.
We have empirical data that shows that our AMA rates are five times less than the average. Those are people who leave against medical advice. The national average is somewhere about 48% of clients who come into treatment. Forty-two percent was the stat of clients who come into treatment that do not complete. Ours was at 7%. We know we’re onto something. We know what we’re doing is working.
You said the word boring and engaging. Is there something other than engaging people and making sure it’s not boring? What do you think is the key to the soup or the magic serum here that’s helping people stay sober, stay in the program longer, and enjoy it more?
It is the camaraderie that occurs within our community through the different types of groups we do. We do a group, and I touched on this before. I also think it is attention to detail. I’m going to let you in on a little secret we do at Recovery Unplugged, which is not going to be a secret after this episode.
I was going to say, “This is going to be on the episode, so be careful.”
Prior to a client coming in, and this goes for any ethical treatment center, we conduct a pre-screening assessment with the client. We get them on the phone. We get a lengthy history whether it is medical, mental health, substance use, or legal, which every facility should be doing. You don’t want to have somebody hop on a plane from Illinois to come into treatment in Tennessee or Florida without knowing who you’re bringing in.
When they get there, they find out it is not appropriate.
That is correct. We do this assessment. Towards the end of our assessment, we ask the client what their favorite genre of music is, who their favorite artist is, and then what that one song that touches them the most is. Our admissions person who’s doing the assessment jots all that down. Their assessment then gets sent off to our physician. He reviews the assessment to make sure this person is going to meet the criteria and that they’re not medically compromised. He’ll recommend a level of care. He’d be like, “Joe is clear to start detox at Recovery Unplugged,” or, “There is no detox needed. Let’s start him at the residential level of care.”
The client books their own flight. We get the itinerary and send a driver to the airport. We get them from the gate. As soon as the client sits down in our transport vehicle, that song is playing for them right away and they say to the driver, “I love this song.” Our response is, “We know. You told us.” Walls come down and rapport is established with our driver right off the bat. That’s how the person’s treatment experience starts.
We have this group that we do every Wednesday across the country. It’s called Open Mic. I believe this is the most important group that occurs at Recovery Unplugged. It is the difference that makes the difference and what makes their treatment experience different. Every client who comes into our facility is assigned a primary clinician. Caseloads for our clinicians are typically hovering between 6 to 7 clients at a time depending on the census.
Every clinician will give an assignment to a client to write something meaningful to them based on the client and therapist interactions. Maybe they had childhood sexual trauma, a reoccurring relationship issue, or whatever the case is. It’s something deeply personal to that client. They’re challenged to do their assignment, write about it, and put it into lyrical. If they don’t have a creative bone in their body, they can just write their assignment.
In the first part of Wednesday at all of Recovery Unplugged across the country, clients are off on their own, scattered throughout the campus, working on their assignments. In the second half of Wednesday, all of the clients gather in the main music room where we have a big sound stage and a light system. It’s a fully functioning sound stage. You can have a concert there. One by one, each client gets up on stage to perform their assignment in front of their peers. I’m going to equate this to we want them to be vulnerable.
I remember early on attending an NA meeting. I remember vividly sitting in a meeting once. A guy raised his hand and shared something in front of the group that if it was me, I would’ve taken to my grave. It was deeply intimate. He got very vulnerable. He was crying. It was heavy-duty stuff. I don’t need to get into what he shared, but I was floored. I’m sitting there with my arms closed and legs crossed.
I’m still fairly new. I got a couple of months clean. I’m sitting in this meeting and I’m rocking back and forth. I’m thinking in my head, “I could never open up like that.” The next person raises their hand and they become vulnerable. They share openly. The third person raises their hand and they become vulnerable. Guess who the seventh person was to raise their hand?
I became vulnerable. If you would’ve told me twenty minutes before that I would’ve been doing that, I would’ve bet my life against it, but I got courage from the people who did it before me. It was attractive to me, so I decided to try it. Much the same happens with Open Mic. You might have Billy who’s sitting in the back that’s two days into treatment.
He is scared shitless of getting up in front of a group and doing any type of public speaking whatsoever. He might be the seventeenth person to go that day. They’re sharing intimate stuff in there. What happens is no matter where you come from, how old you are, or what your drug of choice was, when you’re up on that stage, you’re just a human being that’s coming into treatment.
Sick people need to get better. This is not about going from bad to good. It’s going from sick to better. Billy who goes up seventeenth that Wednesday, next Wednesday, he might be seventh. On the third week, he might be first, grabbing somebody else’s hand. With the camaraderie that occurs within the community, everybody becomes like this. It makes the treatment stay even more effective when you have a good community where you’re in treatment with. That’s another example of what makes us unique.
We have two live musical performance groups a week where Richie from Aerosmith and his band play. On Tuesday, he does a group with the clients. It’s called Supa Tuesdays. On Fridays, we do, at all of our facilities, what is called Feel Good Friday. It’s a concert that happens for the clients before they go back to the residence. People are up. They’re dancing around and moving. What’s happening at Feel Good Friday is a lot of the same songs are played.
Richie has a recovery album called Enemy. Going back to that echoic memory, when a client finally discharges, they have an MP3 player we have given them the day they walked into treatment that’s loaded with a bunch of songs. Let’s say they’re going back to New York and they’re about to drive over the Verrazano Bridge. That’s where they used to go cop their drugs, so they’re feeling uncomfortable. They put a song on that they heard repeatedly in treatment and it brings them back to a safe place. Music has that power.Music has the power to bring you back to a safe place in your mind. Click To Tweet
That’s wonderful. As I look at the time, we have to wrap this up, although I’d like to explore several different areas. Maybe we’ll schedule another interview. Take a moment and think about what’s an aspect of what you’ve already shared that you want to go back and highlight, or something we haven’t even asked you about or you haven’t talked about yet that you want to make sure you get in this.
An aspect that I’d like to re-highlight is the fact that change is possible for anybody whether or not you want to change. It’s all about delayed gratification as opposed to instant. Addiction is feel good now, feel like crap later. Recovery is feel like crap now, feel better later. The only time people will “get” this is if they allow themselves enough time where the payoff of being clean and sober outweighs the payoff of going back out to a familiar life of misery disguised as fun. That’s one of the things I’d like to highlight. Anybody who’s reading this feels hopeless or is contemplating whether or not they have an issue, here’s going to be the deepest statement of the day. People who don’t have an issue never contemplate whether or not they have an issue. Does that make sense?
My mom, whom I’ve seen drunk twice in my entire life, is 78 years old. I can guarantee you she’s not sitting around wondering whether or not she’s an alcoholic. If you have to think about whether or not you have an issue with something, you probably do. Was there anything that I didn’t talk about that I’d like to mention? I don’t know. I talked a lot. I don’t even know what I said. It just comes out.
Anybody is capable of a life beyond their wildest dreams. It’s about putting one foot in front of the other and trusting that you’re doing the next right thing. The hardest part about staying clean is when you don’t want to be clean anymore. Know that feelings are just temporary. Feelings can’t eat you. We feel a multitude of things multiple times a day, but feelings aren’t facts. If you’re feeling something at that moment, it doesn’t mean that it’s a fact.
When you give people the tools and help them build internal strength or, as some would call it, resilience, they know how to deal with those emotions as energies that will pass and that they aren’t the facts.
I would like to highlight, too, that if anyone who is reading this is needing treatment or knows somebody who needs treatment whether it is a family member or coworker, I’m always here to help. We are contracted with most of the major insurers across the country. That is Blue Cross, Aetna, Cigna, Humana, Bright Health, Ambetter, Beacon, Magellan CompSight, and United Healthcare. It’s pretty much every insurance company we are a network provider for, which is cost-saving for anybody who is seeking treatment. I can be reached directly at (754) 246-8999. I’m always available to help. It’s what I love to do and will continue doing.
Is the website RecoveryUnplugged.com?
As I mentioned, I might hit you up for another interview in the not-too-distant future and explore some other aspects of this work. I am grateful beyond words. I look forward to connecting you with a couple of people that we’ve done interviews with in the past years. We’ll see what the synergy might be there.
I’d like that. Thank you, Dr. Tim. This has been awesome. You know I can talk, so if you’re looking for another interview, let me know. I’ll continue the battle.
I appreciate it. Thank you so much.
It is my pleasure.
About Dr. Barry Reiman
Dr. Barry Reiman, the V.P. of Business Development for Recovery Unplugged Treatment Center, has been a featured guest on such daytime television shows as Dr. Phil, The Doctors and Face the Truth with Vivica A. Fox. Working in the field of addiction treatment for close to two decades, Dr. Barry has developed an acute understanding and passion for treating those struggling with Substance Use Disorders.
Dr. Barry’s career in the treatment field stems from his personal connection to addiction. Dr. Barry has been in recovery since June of 1996, and has dedicated his personal and professional life to facilitating change in the lives of those looking for a way out of their addiction. His passion and thirst for knowledge has led to him becoming one of the Treatment Industry’s leading influencers.
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