George uses the following principles and beliefs to guide his methodology:
- Resolution of childhood trauma is at the core of recovery
Childhood trauma typically drives the symptoms and behaviors that bring a client into therapy. In order to experience recovery, it’s necessary to identify and heal this pain. Shame is a common manifestation of this trauma.
- Codependency is always the first addiction
While more common addictions, including sex, drugs and alcohol, will commonly bring a couple or individual into therapy, these other addictions are typically linked to codependency.
- Relational healing expedites the process, and allows for a fuller recovery
Working through the recovery process with a partner or spouse strengthens partnerships and assists with bringing childhood trauma to the surface more quickly. Couples strengthen their relationships by doing this work together.
- Community is necessary for recovery
Alcoholics Anonymous has taught us that a support system is necessary for recovery to take place. Clients are encouraged to make a “relationship audit” and remove toxic relationships from their lives. Weekly men’s and women’s groups offer opportunities for connecting to other people in the recovery process.
- Embrace right-brained thinking
While most people see the world in a logical, rational way, recovery necessitates that we move beyond focusing on logic and learn to live in our (right-brained) present. This means learning to see old problems in a new light and creating new habits and brain patterns.
- Recovering from addiction is a two-stage process
Addictive behavior is always driven, at least in part, by childhood trauma. Step one is stopping the addictive behavior; step two is healing the underlying causes.
- “Learning is a gift, even if pain is your teacher.”
Trauma and pain can be transformed into opportunities for learning and growth. As we better understand our past experiences and how they have shaped us, we no longer have to feel like they negatively rule our lives.