Wellness is a continuous process of change and growth – of becoming aware of and making choices toward a healthy life. Everyone affects their own wellness. A dimensional concept, wellness includes the well-being of body, mind and spirit. All the pieces are addressed in the Guest House programs to assure that our clients have the best opportunity for quality recovery and overall health and wellness.
Similar to physical wellness, the component of mental wellness promotes proper care of our bodies for optimal health and functioning. Nourishing the body is effective only when the mind is also nourished. It takes more than healthy foods to support a person in a state of anxiety or unrest. It is important to learn how to nurture one’s mind by becoming one’s own source of unconditional love and allowing that love to radiate. Mindfulness keeps people grounded in the present and aware that their actions are choices…that they control.
When clients arrive at Guest House, part of their 1½ to 2-week body, mind and spirit assessment process includes meeting with an assigned therapist. There are at least three therapist-client meetings during that time where the therapist begins “peeking beneath the surface and looking for other things that might be going on,” explains Addictions Therapist Emily Richardson. At the conclusion of the assessment, there is a feedback session, and the therapist is involved, offering what is heard, sharing the interpretation and providing recommendations. Over 80% of individuals who are assessed remain at Guest House for treatment. The therapist then continues and maintains a connection and relationship with the client throughout the treatment process.
Treatment is active, and the clients commit themselves to a lot of hard work throughout their stay. The therapists meet individually with clients at least one time per week, with assignments that go along with these meetings. Emily shares, “A life history is one of the assignments that requires a good amount of dedicated time, and it is a powerful tool.” Additionally, clients have a one-hour group session and one-hour lecture/didactic every day. Topics include addiction, recovery and wellness, and the five in-house therapists and other clinical and leadership staff rotate as speakers/presenters. Finally, twelve-step meetings take place on and off campus throughout the week.
While the clients attend to afternoon obligations such as physical therapy, fitness sessions, special meetings and medical appointments, the therapists attend to multiple clinical meetings each week, where they share, review and discuss current treatment, what is working, what needs adjustment and how the plan looks going forward. The therapists’ caseload rarely exceeds five, and Emily shares, “Five is a low caseload in the addiction community, and it allows for the focused quality care that Guest House provides.” Anyone interested in learning more about our addictions therapists or other staff is invited to visit our website’s about page, where staff are introduced with a photo and brief biography.
When speaking with Brother Brandon, one of our current clients, about his perspective on the therapy programs that Guest House provides, he commented that the various components work well in the treatment process, and they lend themselves nicely to the clients also ministering with one another. Their peer relationships deepen as they reflect together on the lectures and group sessions. He explains, “It gives each of us the opportunity to resume our ministerial role – to be the ear and mouth of the merciful Father. It is all a critical part of the process that restores what was once injured.”
Well-being encompasses the whole person, so we must nurture the whole person, consistently and lovingly, always. At Guest House, we treat the whole person, and overall health is our focus.
Written by Guest House Staff Writer