Pathways Wellness

How Does Pathways Wellness Center Help Me Set Realistic Treatment Goals?

How Does Pathways Wellness Center Help Me Set Realistic Treatment Goals?
Raul Haro
October 24, 2023
Part of any addiction treatment plan is learning how to set realistic treatment goals. Many times people go into addiction treatment with high expectations of themselves. Some of these expectations may be unhealthy and make the person feel as though they have to complete treatment as quickly as possible. Not being able to instantly beat […]
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How Does Pathways Wellness Center Help Me Set Realistic Treatment Goals?

Part of any addiction treatment plan is learning how to set realistic treatment goals. Many times people go into addiction treatment with high expectations of themselves. Some of these expectations may be unhealthy and make the person feel as though they have to complete treatment as quickly as possible. Not being able to instantly beat their addiction then causes the person to feel as if they are a failure. This can demotivate someone to the point that they refuse to try again. It is also known as setting oneself up for failure, and many times, a person may subconsciously self-sabotage in such a way as to reaffirm negative views about themselves. 

That's why each person in addiction treatment needs to learn how to set realistic treatment goals. By setting smaller and more easily achievable goals, it builds up confidence that can be used to tackle more difficult goals. Thankfully, people don't have to set these goals all by themselves. There are specialized mental health care professionals whose sole job is to examine a client's needs and help them set realistic treatment goals. Each step of treatment involves a professional who is waiting and willing to help.

By offering such support, the client no longer has to worry about doing everything by themselves. Part of treatment is recognizing that someone needs help and allowing others to help them. This includes understanding someone's personal needs and creating goals that address them. At Pathways Wellness Center, each client can expect an individualized treatment plan that will help them find success. By working closely with qualified mental health care professionals, clients can create goals that are healthy and realistic. 

Learning how to create realistic treatment goals at Pathways Wellness Center starts with the first part of addiction treatment, which is case management.

Setting Realistic Treatment Goals at Pathways Wellness Center

When people enroll in addiction treatment at Pathways Wellness Center, they meet with a case manager. This is a specialized mental health care professional who speaks one-on-one with the client. They examine the client's background, support network, and other factors that can influence someone's addiction treatment. Clients are involved with this process and can speak with their case manager and express their wants and needs. Then, the case manager will look at all the information presented to them and create a personalized treatment plan.

This plan is made up of treatments and therapies designed to help the client reach their goal. Of course, the biggest goal for a client is to achieve recovery. However, achieving that goal takes time and effort to accomplish. Depending on the addiction, treatment can last anywhere from a couple of months to a year or more. All treatment plans are a result of a collaboration between the case manager and the client. Each client must approve of a treatment before it's added to their treatment plan. A case manager can suggest treatments they feel may help the client, but the client always has a final say in what their treatment should be. 

These treatments are directly tied to realistic treatment goals that a client wants to accomplish. For example, someone may have a treatment goal of finding a way to relax without the use of substances or drugs. To that, a case manager may suggest meditation, art therapy, or even sound therapy. If a client has a goal of improving their physical health, a case manager may suggest yoga, breathwork, or adventure therapy. Each goal is matched with a treatment or therapy that will help the client accomplish them. 

This is why goals are broken up into smaller, more easily achievable pieces. No treatment will fix an addiction instantaneously. Instead, a person must work toward their recovery, one step at a time.

Why Create Smaller Treatment Goals?

Breaking down a big goal into smaller and more realistic treatment goals has several purposes. The first, mentioned before, is to prevent burnout. Addiction treatment is tiring work and it can be easy to become demotivated during the process. Having several smaller and more realistic treatment goals allows someone to experience victory during treatment. These victories, in turn, allow someone to build up their confidence, which will give them the power they need to accomplish larger goals. Addiction treatment is not a race, but a test of endurance. Being able to stick with treatment, no matter how tough it gets, is vital to recovery.

Having smaller and more realistic treatment goals also keeps someone from setting themselves up for failure. It's easy for someone to boldly declare that they can beat an addiction in a month. Putting it into practice, however, is a different story. Having realistic treatment goals allows someone to meet these goals because they are achievable to the individual setting them. There are no grand expectations placed on a person with realistic treatment goals. So, thusly, there isn't a lot of undue pressure placed on someone. This is especially important for those who struggle with anxiety disorders, who may become distressed if they are given difficult goals that they feel they cannot accomplish. 

Lastly, the goal of any treatment plan is for someone to recover from their addiction. How they achieve recovery varies from person to person, but it usually involves several small steps. Enough drops of water in a bucket can eventually fill it. The same goes for realistic treatment goals. Once someone accomplishes one goal, the next one they tackle becomes a little easier. Making small changes allows someone to make big changes. This has a snowball effect, empowering the client until they eventually achieve their main goal of recovery. 

Individualized Treatment at Pathways Wellness Center

The best part about Pathways Wellness Center is how individualized it is. Every client receives a customized treatment plan to address their unique needs during addiction treatment. This involves getting to know the client and understanding them on a deep emotional level. One type of treatment may work for one person but would be detrimental to another. Setting realistic treatment goals is similar. To understand which goals will work, clients work closely with mental health care professionals who can guide them into making healthy choices.

No client is ever expected to have to make these choices or set realistic treatment goals all by themselves. They are given the tools they need to make these decisions while being guided by professionals. Eventually, clients learn how to set realistic treatment goals for themselves after some practice and therapy. However, clients are always welcome to ask for help at any time they need it. Pathways Wellness Center employs many people who are also in recovery and have gone through treatment themselves. They can give clients a unique perspective and advice that comes from personal experiences. Clients are never alone at Pathways Wellness Center and can feel safe during their treatment.

What Do Realistic Treatment Goals Look Like?

A healthy goal has a few aspects to them that make them realistic – and, thus, achievable. Goals should be something that a person can reasonably do after being taught the skills needed to accomplish them. For example, someone may set a goal in treatment to open up about the trauma they experienced. If they are never taught how to open up in a way that doesn't re-traumatize them, then they can't achieve that goal. Setting the same goal and then undergoing individualized psychotherapy to help them safely talk about their trauma makes the goal realistic. With the skills learned in psychotherapy, the person then can go on to talk about their trauma, thus allowing them to achieve their goal.

Having realistic treatment goals also means giving someone time to accomplish them. Addiction cannot be fixed instantaneously. It's a disease that has to be worked on over some time. Setting a goal to undergo a supervised detox is a lot more realistic than a goal to quit a substance in a single day. Everyone needs to be kind to themselves and give themselves ample time to succeed. That is why realistic treatment goals are given time frames that allow a client to relax and set the pace they need to accomplish them.

The setting of realistic treatment goals also means understanding the challenges a person will face outside of treatment. Pathways Wellness Center is an outpatient treatment facility. This means clients go to treatment during the day and then go home afterward. Someone can set a goal of disposing of all alcohol in a house, and it's a fine goal to have. However, if they live with several people, some of whom may drink, getting rid of all the alcohol can be unrealistic and cause interpersonal problems. Working with a mental health care professional can help someone work with the people in their lives to set realistic treatment goals.

It's also important to understand that sometimes, a goal won't be met, and that's okay. It just means that someone should step back, and analyze why they couldn't meet their goal. Sometimes a goal needs to be adjusted, especially after trying new treatments. Any case manager or therapist can help a client re-examine their goals and adjust them as needed. Part of the treatment is being taught the skills needed to cope with setbacks in their recovery. So, realistic treatment goals should be goals that are flexible and allow the person many chances to succeed. 

Learning Important Life Skills in Addiction Treatment

All treatment plans at Pathways Wellness Center have the goal of helping the client learn how to live a healthy, sober life. Addiction often comes from unhealthy coping methods, such as self-medicating. People are also susceptible to peer pressure and manipulation if they don't have the tools to protect themselves. Peer pressure itself is a major factor in addiction, especially among younger adults and teenagers. Everyone needs to learn how to protect their mental health, deal with troubles in life healthily, and stand up for themselves when needed in order to be successful. 

Change starts from within, and a person cannot beat their addiction without first addressing the circumstances that lead them to substance abuse. Treatment providers at Pathways Wellness Center focus on helping clients address these issues to help them heal. As mentioned before, this process takes time and must be taken with care. By setting realistic treatment goals, this process is broken down into steps that are easier for the client to follow.

The process of recovery isn't just detoxing and deciding not to take the substance again. Recovery is making physical, mental, and social changes that will affect someone for the rest of their life. Pathways Wellness Center takes a holistic approach to its treatment plans, so clients can expect to make changes on several fronts. These changes may seem strange at first, such as changing what foods a person eats or going outside more often. However, these changes can have a big impact on a person's mental health and wellness. Many are surprised to learn that even something as simple as practicing yoga daily can influence someone's recovery in a big way. Little changes allow for big ones later on. 

These skills are then used long after treatment is finished to help someone stay in recovery. Once a person learns how to create realistic treatment goals and stick with them, the world opens up to them. Now, things that were so scary in the past may not seem so bad anymore. Since things seem less scary, there isn't such a strong need for substances to soothe the fear and pain. They begin to make healthy decisions and problems can be broken down into more easily digestible pieces and dealt with. All because someone learned how to set realistic treatment goals.

Finding Support and Guidance at Pathways Wellness Center

The best part about addiction treatment at Pathways Wellness Center is that each client is important, even after treatment has been completed. There is a wealth of mental health care professionals who can help guide someone through any problem they have. It's not just learning how to set realistic treatment goals; it's also learning how to navigate life. Speaking with someone who has also gone through treatment can be immensely comforting. There is proof that treatment works, and they spend every day speaking with clients and helping them achieve recovery. 

Pathways Wellness Center also has a wide-spanning peer network that is made up of alumni and those currently in treatment. Speaking with any of them can help someone see what realistic treatment goals look like. They can even get advice and learn from the mistakes of others before they make mistakes themselves. It's a place of positivity that helps clients get through treatment and find a life outside of it. If someone doesn't know how to live a sober life, Pathways Wellness Center and its peer network can help them learn how to do so. 

It's also a place to discover who someone is inside. Addiction often overshadows a person and buries the traits that make them special. It's hard to express one's self when all they can think about is getting their next fix or struggling with the pain of withdrawal. Once someone can defeat their addiction, the people they are meant to be can truly blossom. Many who recover from addiction go on to “pay it forward” in a way. Some even go on to help others recover from addiction as well. Pathways Wellness Center doesn't just help people recover from addiction, it also helps them discover what they want from life.

The staff at Pathways Wellness Center is always happy to answer questions about treatment, addiction, and what realistic treatment goals look like. Know that, no matter what, everyone is deserving of help when they need it. That includes themselves and the people whom they love. 

Those in addiction treatment need to set realistic goals for themselves to achieve long-lasting recovery. When someone puts unrealistic expectations on themselves, it can lead to burnout and, at worst, a relapse. Being able to understand what a realistic goal is and how to set such goals takes skill. Here at Pathways Wellness Center in Glendora, California, we teach our clients the skills needed to set healthy goals and give them the support they need to meet them. Nobody should have to deal with their addiction alone, and everyone deserves quality, compassionate treatment. If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction, don't delay. Call us at (888) 771-0966 today.

About the Author

Raul Haro
Raul Haro is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist with sixteen years of experience working in both the inpatient and outpatient setting. As an LMFT, He has trained in trauma focused cognitive behavioral therapy and EMDR. Raul has furthered his training in the drug and alcohol field by obtaining a Masters in Drug and Alcohol Counseling through CCAPP. Raul has a background in nursing where he has been an LVN for over 25 years. Recently, he has returned to school to complete a degree in Registered Nursing. Future plans are for Raul are to eventually complete a degree as a Nurse Practitioner combining his therapy practice with his nursing skills.

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