24 ,May, 2018

“I didn’t know I had a problem, I was defenceless against it. When I did know the problem, then I could start dealing with it. That’s really what it’s been all about, the knowledge as opposed to ignorance or denial.” Mike Willesee, famous television presenter and interviewer talking about his battle with alcohol on the ABC’s Australian Story.

Willesee’s admission he was defenceless because he did not know he had a problem highlights the number one issue facing the High Functioning Executive (HFE) who is abusing alcohol or drugs. They are deluded into believing everything is OK because,

  • they are still performing at optimal levels in their work.
  • their success in business has built up an inner belief they have the mental toughness to conquer anything; and cutting back or stopping drinking or using is something they can control if and when needed.
  • The perceived stigma for an HFE to admit they have a substance abuse issue is so strong they will rationalise their use of alcohol or drugs e.g. I have a high powered job and having 4-5 glasses of wine every night is OK because “it is my way of relaxing and dealing with the pressure that comes with my job.”

Work colleagues, spouses, family and friends of the HFE can see the deterioration occurring but are faced with the dilemma, “How do I go about getting the HFE to do something before disaster strikes.”

At 21Renew we specialise in working closely with work colleagues, spouses, family and friends of the HFE to create the right environment for a successful rehab result.