My guest today is Michael Roth. He is a Holistic Addiction and Wellness Specialist who has been in the field for over 35 years now. And although Michael is based in Ventura, California, he does a lot of consultations over Skype, meaning he has a very diverse reach that extends outside of the West Coast.
In this episode, he breaks down the motivations for his getting into the field, various holistic approaches towards addiction recovery, what constitutes love and sexual addictions, and much more.
What is Holistic Addiction and Wellness Treatment?
Michael says for him, ‘holistic’ has to do with the mind/body connection. When thinking about addiction, the mind and body are inextricably linked, so a holistic treatment method can be a real difference maker when treating addiction.
Michael also says that his focus is on the ‘blind spots’ that can occur in the mind and actions of those who are seeking recovery from addiction. These blind spots are blockage points that get in the way of successful recovery efforts.
He says that he specializes in helping men get free from their sex and love addictions. And when explaining the difference between sex and love addictions, Michael says that sex addiction has more to do with pornography usage and other compulsive sexual behaviors. And love addiction hinges on validation and getting self-esteem from other people, often multiple partners or ‘qualifying people’ as Michael describes them.
And when it comes to seeking recovery, there is a certain perceived stigma associated with sex addicts over drugs and alcohol. This stigma is fundamentally not true. As Michael says, they are just normal people who have can’t escape their compulsive behaviors. But because of the perception exists, it can mean that not a lot of people seek help or treatment for their sex addictions.
The Most Common Fears Associated with Recovering from a Sex and Love Addiction
One of the biggest fears is figuring out how to function and live without the person or the behavior that is driving the constant dopamine rushes. And to achieve a successful break from the behaviors that keep a person stuck in a feedback loop, it’s necessary to ask the question, “why do I want to change my behavior?” It’s not enough to just want to change. Asking the question and learning internal motivations for recovery is very important. Michael goes into a lot more detail during the episode, so listen in for a more thorough explanation!
Holistic Strategies for Recovering from Addiction
To start, Michael talks about shadow work. He says the practice involves two chairs and active dialogue between the client and their addiction. So, if you think of the practice like it’s shadow-boxing; it’s a gentle and equally powerful practice for understanding and changing addictive patterns.
He also talks about Somato Emotional Repatterning. This is the practice of having a client say they are going to abstain from a practice for X amount of days. And after that statement, if they tilt their neck from side-to-side without locking up. Or in other words, if what they say is congruent with their physical movements, there is no blind spots or alternative ‘payoffs’ at play.
What Led Michael to His Line of Work
Michael says he grew up in a family with a long history of addiction. He is also a recovering love addict, so the subject is very familiar to him. And having been a mind and body practitioner for decades now, Michael is continuing his good work and wisdom to the field.
Examples of How Michael Has Helped Clients
Michael provides a few really crucial examples of how his holistic recovery methods help clients. But one that really highlights the breadth of his practice is the clarity that abstaining from sexually compulsive behaviors can bring. He says that once clients reach the point of being able to clearly distance themselves from their addictive patterning, their brain chemistry becomes more regulated and grounded.
Some Good Questions for a Client to Ask During Recovery
The most important questions to ask are: “Do you want to stop? Are you aware of what’s in the way? Would it be helpful for you to have support and accountability in coaching?”
Those are the most crucial questions to ask and a coach like Michael would take it from there to show the best holistic ways to successfully recover from a sex and love addiction.
For much more, listen to the episode and make sure to check out the links to get in contact with Michael.
Key Links for Michael:
Michael’s website: https://breakthroughaddictionrecovery.net/
Phone: (805) 256-0372
Contact Form: https://breakthroughaddictionrecovery.net/contact-us/
Michael’s latest book, Sex and Love Addiction Recovery is available for free download by signing up here: https://breakthroughaddictionrecovery.net/