Becoming an intervention specialist requires a unique skill set and outlook on life. The best intervention specialists possess an array of diverse talents that has allowed them to flourish in this position. Here are the three key qualities that every successful intervention specialist must have.
To be an intervention specialist, one must be honest and forthright. Addicts can be masters of deceit at times, and it’s often up to the intervention specialist to call them out on their actions. In order to recognize and correct this behavior pattern in others, an intervention specialist must be honest with themselves. This is why ex-addicts are often excellent at this job. Because they’ve confronted their “demons” in the past, it’s often clear to them when others are confronting theirs.
Honesty is such an important part of the recovery process. For people to properly heal, they must take a realistic look at their lives and proceed from there. Everyone involved with an intervention has to be brutally honest to make it successful. This can be difficult for many people. Throughout their lives, many have been trained to avoid conflict on some level. A successful specialist welcomes challenges and bluntness, because this is how true recovery begins to take form.
Being a part of an intervention can be a draining experience. Many of the addicts will be at the lowest point of their lives. It’s not unusual for an addict to have a volatile reaction to being confronted for her actions. Emotions will swirl around the room and it can cause people to lash out. Friends and family members may have reached their breaking points as well, and their anger may bubble over at times. It’s the specialist’s duty to view the scenario from all sides and to express compassion for each person involved in the intervention. Everyone in the room must make the addict’s recovery a priority, regardless of how upset they may be.
The most effective specialists are masters of conflict resolution. They know when to back down and when to be aggressive about suggesting options. Furthermore, they’re excellent at identifying openings for them to achieve their goals. With their unique knowledge of human nature, they can see the twists and turns of an intervention before such events even take place. They base their communication strategies around their past experiences and intuition about the situation, helping to overturn the addict’s objections until the person agrees to go to treatment.
Not everyone has the sort of mettle required to do such high-level problem solving and not all specialists are equally skilled. At times, the specialist may have to juggle different sets of needs and expectations from each party, while helping the group to come to a consensus about what should be done next. The specialist is a unique combination of mediator, therapist and administrator. If someone enjoys wearing a lot of different hats in a job setting, it’s likely that the individual will relish the challenges this sensitive position presents.
Working in this field can be extremely rewarding for those who are successful. It’s not an exaggeration to say that these people save lives. If you’d like more information about staging an intervention, please call the helpline at 800-447-9081.