Impulse Control

Regardless of what you want to call it, a “bad habit,” compulsion, or addiction…. some people feel compelled to repeat pleasurable behaviors to the point that they do damage to themselves, and often, others in the process. For someone who is struggling, the urge to engage in a specific behavior feels irresistible and uncontrollable.

How can you tell the difference between a harmless bit of fun and an addiction or compulsion? The short answer has to do with whether or not negative consequences exist, and to what degree those negative consequences have interfered with healthy and balanced living. If one’s finances, family relationships, job, and other important areas of life are compromised then, it is likely that professional help is appropriate.

Common Addictive and Compulsive Behaviors We Treat:

  • Gambling
  • Shopping
  • Internet pornography
  • Video gaming
  • Overeating
  • Internet role playing games/chatting
  • Relationship dependency
  • Compulsive participation in a hobby
  • Compulsive sexual behavior
  • Excessive devotion to work
  • Compulsive involvement in sports or fantasy sports

If you are reading this it is likely you fall into one of three groups:
–    you have been told you have an addiction or compulsion but you disagree
–    you are concerned that you may have an addiction and you are looking for help
–    you are reading this for a loved one who does not believe a problem exists

If you are in the first category, most likely the idea of talking to a professional won’t make sense to you. We simply encourage you to pay attention and be honest with yourself about the possibility you may be experiencing increasing negative consequences from your behavior. Your friends or family may see something you don’t yet.

If you are in the second category, we recommend you schedule an evaluation to help determine how serious your situation is and what level of treatment would be recommended. We are equipped to help you evaluate your situation and options.

If you are in the third category, we strongly encourage you to meet with a counselor to see what options are available to you to help your loved one. This is a very difficult role to be in but your choices may prove life-saving to the one experiencing the problem, and a tremendous benefit to other family members.

Call our client relationship coordinator to learn more about how we can help.

Also See:
Alcohol/Drug Assessment
Anorexia/Bulimia
Compulsive Sexual Behavior
Painkiller Addiction

Over-eating / Weight Loss

At Directions Counseling Group we find that overeating is often a symptom of other problems. We encourage every client to begin with a thorough review of their physical and emotional health which includes both physician and counselor evaluation. When a significant component of the overeating is an unhealthy means of coping with emotions, we can help you.
The following checklist is designed to help you honestly assess your relationship with food. If you notice three or more of these symptoms we encourage you to call and inquire about how we can help.

  • Continuing to gain or maintain an overweight condition, despite numerous attempts to lose weight
  • Feeling ashamed about what or how much you eat
  • Feeling out of control or emotionally numb when eating
  • A history of joining and quitting various weight loss programs without success
  • Others express concerns about your eating or weight gain
  • Eating frequently to the point of becoming overfull and uncomfortable
  • Avoid eating at public functions, or eating in advance of attending gatherings
  • Overeating during or after emotional highs or lows, especially to cope with feelings of frustration, shame, or anger
  • Obsessively weighing yourself or avoiding scales altogether

Many of us know the deep frustration of getting on a diet or even “making all the right lifestyle changes” only to find we have resumed previous habits. Our counselors will work with you to:

  • gain accurate insight into emotional dynamics of your eating
  • find new and healthy ways to be aware of, express, and redirect key emotions
  • gradually add behavioral and lifestyle changes which are realistic and sustainable
  • safely taper away from the counseling, while developing a strong and sustainable support system to help make permanent changes

Please call us at 614-888-9200. Our intake coordinator will discuss with you how we can help.

Impulse Control Specialists: