Motivational interviewing therapy is a sort of therapy that is strategically designed to create a kind of intrinsic hunger within the recovering addict to dedicate themselves to changing their old damaging behavior and learning the life skills they will need for sober living in NJ. This kind of therapy starts with a therapist sitting down and interviewing their patient about the reason why they are looking for help with their addiction, why now, what are their motivations behind wanting this sort of change in their lives. As the therapist asks and the patient answers, patient is vocally reaffirming the motivations that are sitting beneath the surface. Giving them the freedom of vocalization can let them flourish in the mind of the patient and reaffirm their need for the change, making their resolve that much stronger.


Step One

The first goal during motivational interviewing, for the therapist, will be to show their patient genuine and unwavering compassion and to in general act as a solid steadying support to the user. This involves treating the patient with dignity and respect. It includes helping them feel taken care of, and by far the most important thing of all in this kind of therapy, it involves making sure the patient feels listened to.

The therapist will maintain a non confrontational demeanor throughout the therapy sessions. They will not push back at the patient too much when the patient begins to push back at them. This sort of therapy requires that the person with the chemical dependency be the one who is must make the decision to come to a conclusion about their own life goals and come to take a look within themselves so that they can find the motivation that is leading them to the want for change in hopes that they can hold on to that motivation as a form of energy through what is likely one of the hardest fights of their lives.


Step Two

Discovery InstituteThe next steps of motivational interviewing is a process where the therapist walks through the patient’s motivations and the narrative of the recovering drug user or alcoholic. This once again goes to confirm and reinforce the user’s thirst for dedicated change. This reminds the patient of that thirst and makes it clear to them once again and perhaps from a different and sobering source that there is a desperate call for change, within themselves, and it needs for them to agree to that change. Saying that they do agree, struggling with the addiction as they say it, there is something affirming to a patient’s determination and eventually something intrinsic alters in a patient’s brain that changes their psychological needs in favor of the change. This kind of therapy is in practice a short program by nature, but the benefit of doing the interviews can last for a lifetime.  It is the sort of breaking goals down and mining for motivational energy that helps the patient learn how to self evaluate and can lead to sustainable behavioral changes in the patient. In this way, motivational Interviewing can be a truly valuable tool for someone who is recovering from an addiction to drugs or alcohol.


Some common reasons motivational interviewing could be because the recovering addict has

  • Depression
  • Generalized Anxiety Disorder
  • Compulsive Gambling Addiction
  • Illicit drug abuse or chemical dependency
  • Prescription drug abuse or chemical dependency


The most important elements of Motivational Interviewing:

  • Collaboration with a therapist
  • The engendering of intrinsic self care and safeguarding, intrinsic motivation building and then using that central desire to to dedicate oneself to creating a safe and practical sober life moving forward.
  • Autonomy is offered to the user in motivational interviewing therapy by being certain that the power in this sort of therapy stays in the hands of the addict themself. It is the recovering user who is in the end responsible for laying out their narrative and revealing their motivations in their own way so that the therapist can help them shape their struggle into a map of recovery.


Detox Centers in NJ and Rehab in NJ Offer Behavioral Therapy

Behavioral therapy is the backbone of almost every drug and alcohol addiction recovery program in New Jersey. There are many different types of behavioral therapy.

Some of the more common behavioral therapies used for substance abuse and addiction recovery therapy are:

  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
  • Dialectical Behavior Therapy
  • Motivational Interviewing Therapy
  • Contingency Management Therapy

Not every treatment facility will offer the same form of behavioral therapy but it is a good bet that each of them will offer at least one of them if not more. This form of therapy is usually done with a one on one individual sort of therapy. To learn more about behavioral therapy regarding addiction and how it can offer a positive impact to you or a loved one, contact us today


Reviewed for Medical & Clinical Accuracy by Dr. Jeffrey Berman, MD

Dr. Jeffrey Berman, MDDr. Jeffrey Berman is a psychiatrist in Teaneck, New Jersey and is affiliated with Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital. He received his medical degree from State University of New York Upstate Medical University and has been in practice for more than 20 years. He also speaks multiple languages, including French and Hebrew.

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