Change Is Possible In 2012!

Posted Jan 30th, 2012 by Kitty Slight  Category: Community Interest


As we journey into the New Year, many of us continue to reflect on the changes we want (or need) to make and resolve to follow through on those changes. Why is change so difficult for some yet easy for others? What are telltale signs that a client or loved one is ready to make a positive change in his life?

“Even though a professional or family member notices the seriousness of a problem and wants to offer immediate help to their client or loved one, it may not be the right time for the person who is coping with the issue at hand,” says Unison’s Director of Short-Term Services Gloria Oliver. “Forcing someone to seek help when he is not ready becomes an act in futility. You can do the most good by first helping to raise the individual’s awareness of the problem,” she adds.

Change is a process and quite often does not happen quickly or easily. There are five stages of change that people typically go through as they cope with life’s major issues – whether a person is dealing with weight management, drug or alcohol addiction, divorce, or other challenges.

Five Stages of Change

1) Precontemplation – During this stage of change, a person is unaware that a problem exists – he often denies there is a problem, but others may see it. During this stage, professionals and family members must engage the client or loved one but not force the issue.

2) Contemplation – Here, the person becomes conscious of the problem and begins to think about how it impacts his life. People at this stage are most likely to respond to feedback and education about their problem. Family members and professionals may be able to persuade the person to get help.

3) Preparation – At this stage, a person is committed to change and actively seeks a plan of action. The client or loved one may be open to calling intake and getting information about his problem.

4) Action – Here, people are able to say, “I need to change my life,” or “I want to do things differently.” People at this stage find that social re-enforcement is important. They are open to family interventions and professional treatment.

5) Maintenance – During this final stage, a person reviews environmental triggers for the problem and develops a plan for preventing relapse.

Making a lasting change is rarely a simple process, and usually involves a substantial commitment of time, effort and emotion. Unison Behavioral Health Group can help! Unison accepts Ohio Medicaid and most private insurances. Clients can receive services at one of our three Toledo offices located at 1425 Starr Avenue, 1212 Cherry Street and 544 E. Woodruff Avenue. For more information on Unison Behavioral Health Group, please call: 419-693-0631 or visit us at www.unisonbhg.org.

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Kitty Slight - Unison BHG | 1425 Starr Avenue | Toledo, OH 43605

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