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The stresses that business executives face in today’s competitive financial climate make them prime candidates for drug and/or alcohol addiction. The temporary escape provided by intoxication can let them forget about the perils and pressures of their daily lives, if only for a short while. This strong desire to escape can lead to full-blown addiction, at which point they permanently forget about not only their jobs, but the rest of their lives, including their loved ones, family and friends. When an executive gets to the point where they can no longer manage their lives or affairs because of prolonged alcohol or drug abuse, it's time for their family and friends to mobilize for an executive intervention.
The Heightened Level of Denial
Executives are used to being in control. So, why wouldn’t they be able to control themselves? This is a common attitude for an executive to take when confronted with the assertion that they have an addiction problem. They will act hostile and dismissive (more so than many other alcohol or drug users) and exhibit the ego and pride that was responsible for their business success. It could be very hard to tell someone so accomplished in other areas of their life that they are falling victim to an alcohol or drug problem. Their refusal to accept it can lead to strain on the family, estrangement from friends, and the disintegration of personal relationships. An interventionist specially trained in executive intervention will already be aware of this behavior and can anticipate and handle most reactions and eventualities that usually occur during any executive intervention. Unlike loved ones, family members and friends who are too emotionally involved, the executive interventionist is trained to be detached and non-confrontational during the executive intervention.
Logistical Difficulties in Executive Intervention
Most executives usually have very full schedules. Unless they pencil time in for themselves months in advance, you will never be able to get a dedicated executive to take any time off without an exceptional reason. The trouble is, since most executive addicts don’t believe they have a problem, they will not regard therapy as a good reason to take any time off to help themselves. Often a reluctant executive will use their schedule as a weapon to defend themselves against having to take the time off to enter rehab. They will say to themselves or others that they simply don't have the time to even consider getting help, even if they did have a problem – which of course most don't believe they have anyway. This is where the expertise of a executive intervention specialist is so important work out the preparation and logistical considerations when anyone is endeavoring to conduct an executive intervention. Measures must be taken to ensure that all of the executive's work is covered, and their important affairs are carefully being looked after.
Having worked so hard to attain their professional status, executives become very attached to their work and often require strict assurances that nothing will be disrupted if they leave for a while. It is normal for the executive to voice their objections stating that they’re being undermined or that their friends and family are putting them in an embarrassing position at work that might cause them to lose their job. While such concerns are always valid, they usually are employed as a stalling technique. The executive is desperately trying to avoid having to face their inner demons that have caused them to engage in risky behaviors such as alcohol and/or drug abuse. In actuality, the more likely eventuality is that the executive would eventually lose their job as a result of their alcohol and/or drug addiction, not because they were seeking help for themselves. A trained executive interventionist is accustomed to handling these sorts of protests, personal excuses or personal indignations that may be expressed by the executive as they attempt to convince everyone that they don't have a problem, and therefore don't need any help.
Requirements of a Successful Executive Intervention
For any executive intervention to be successful, family and friends must be coached and prepped on how to present examples of how the executive's alcohol and/or drug abuse has adversely affected their lives, directly or indirectly. The loving delivery of these real-life stories is combined with the assurance that everyone there has gathered because they love or care for the executive and only want to see them fulfill their true potential and greatness in life.
The National Alcohol and Substance Abuse Information Center (NASAIC) maintains a continuously updated national database of executive interventionists in your local area, as well as the leading recommended executive interventionists in the United States.