“The secret to healing addiction is love. Love heals all,” says Reverend Dr. Kevin T. Coughlin.
International Master Addictions Coach Reverend Dr. Kevin T. Coughlin has made a name for himself in the recovery world through numerous channels and has expressed his love for helping people in numerous ways. An authentic and inspired journey led him to publishing poetry, articles and several books on the topic of addiction. He was the Director of a non-profit for two decades, New Beginning Ministry, Inc., a residential recovery facility, and now provides private recovery coaching for individuals in need of aftercare.
Recovery Coaching with Reverend Coughlin is client-driven, which means the client sets the goal while the Reverend’s efforts go toward uncovering the blockages that may prevent the client from realizing the goal.
“I discover what the client’s worldview is and help them to understand how to change it. Through powerful questioning and active listening, I help clients to arrive at a solution on their own.”
According to Reverend Coughlin, “aftercare is where people are dropping the ball. They walk out of treatment and promptly relapse.”
In addition to coaching, the Reverend has dedicated many years of his life to formulating methods and tools for addicted individuals to benefit from.
“I encourage everyone to write and journal whether they are in recovery or not.”
In order to assist people with writing and journaling activities, he has made available several different tools like food journals, recovery journals, anger logs, and other coaching journals on Amazon.com. These help to one to audit one’s own behaviors in order to see when and how progress is being made on the goals they have set as well as the action plans they have created.
“Journaling helps people find balance in their lives. When you write something, it becomes real. The areas where you need to focus become more visible as well as you take a good look at yourself through the writing process.”
While journaling is the Reverend’s go-to form of writing, he is a prolific poet who has written pieces on recovery, grief, death, and more topics that he felt a need to address in this very personal and deep form of writing. The poems in his anthologies run the gamut of emotions and styles. From pain, anger and happiness, his writing reflects the depths of his thoughts and feelings.
“The first poem I wrote was about a friend who overdosed and died. I had never written anything in my life before that. It’s like journaling but in a deeper way.”
Reverend Coughlin’s journey in recovery is a longstanding one. His mother was an alcoholic but died 40 years sober.
“I had a problem with alcohol as well,” he told RecoveryView.com. Once he found his own way, his next steps were to research, take courses, and finally, re-enter the recovery world as a professional interventionist (CIP) and a Pastoral Counselor specializing in addictions. He founded New Beginning Ministry, Inc., a residential recovery facility, and was theirSpiritual Director for some time.
“It’s such a wonderful thing when a kid who is suffering from addiction leaves treatment with a hop in their step. It’s an amazing thing to witness, and to know that I’m a tiny part of saving that life.”
His poetic journey turned into articles and books which can be found on various websites, including RecoveryView.com and more, as well as in print form.
“I love to write and teach and speak to a larger audience,” says Coughlin as he reflects on his latest focus which is providing support and tools to families of addicts. “It’s so hard for parents, when they find their child, the child they’ve brought up for the last 15... 17 years, is a heroin addict. There are horrible drugs out there. One is even called ‘the Gray Death.’ It’s scary. I can’t even imagine my child coming home and saying they are addicted to opiates.”
Some of Reverend Coughlin’s poems directly deal with dire subjects, like death. But it is through those topics that the Reverend reveals that,
“The solution for addiction is love. The programs that work are giving people a purpose and a place in this harsh world. Afterall, isn’t everyone searching for the feeling that they fit in? And for love?”
We learn from the Reverend that the expression of love comes through art, music, and writing, and other creative forms by which people share the range of their emotions.
“I’ve seen a lot of death. I was a police officer for 8 years. I know a young man that was killed by another man who was mentally ill. The mother had a very hard time with the grieving process. I would talk about her son to help her heal. She was stuck in a terrible place in her head but I knew that sweeping the pain under the carpet was not a good idea.”
He went on to say, “if we learned anything from the AIDs crises, we know that silence equals death. Listening and building our communication skills is going to help us to resolve things as a race and help us to heal when we face losses.”
“It doesn’t have to be a “God Thing,” he says candidly. “Just look at what you’ve been doing, use common sense, and don’t read more into than there is. Religion and spirituality are like two sets of railroad tracks going off into the distance that eventually touch at a point. However, they really are two different things.”
The ways to find the track toward what is “good and right” are many. Reverend Coughlin advises all to “say yes to life,” and “keep it simple.”
To read more of Reverend Coughlin’s wisdom, please visit http://www.revkevsrecoveryworld.com/. Links to his blogs and books can be found there.