Community Reinforcement and Family Training (CRAFT)

CRAFT is an evidence-based talk-therapy for Substance Abuse that works through a loved one to help you. CRAFT helps your loved one find the headspace they need to help you. Then it shows them how to connect you with people, activities, or responsibilities that bring you meaning and purpose while sober as a way to encourage you to begin treatment or sustain your sobriety. 

Background of CRAFT Approach: 

CRAFT is a talk-therapy developed by Nathan Azrin, who also developed CRA. Like CRA, CRAFT is a behavioral approach that believes you will choose to change if the benefits outweigh the consequences. The main difference is that in CRAFT your loved one is the patient, not you. The therapist shows them how to connect you to things you enjoy but requires you to be sober. This creates more benefits for sobriety and more consequences for substance use.  

What Are The Benefits of CRAFT?: 

CRAFT can be used to help guide you toward starting rehab, or as a way to help you stay sober after treatment. As a result, it has many benefits. 

  • Nonconfrontational: Helps guide you to decide that rehab is the best choice without using confrontational intervention tactics. 
  • Well-being: Helps your loved one learn self-care to improve their mental health, so that they are better equipped to help you.
  • Stronger Bonds: Strengthens your relationship with your loved one.
  • Teaches Triggers: Helps your loved one learn your triggers for substance abuse so they can help you cope with or avoid them. 
  • Problem-Solving: Learn healthy ways to solve future problems. 
  • Social Connections: Gets you more involved with sober friends, networks, and support groups.
  • Passion & Purpose: Helps you engage in sober activities or hobbies that you find meaningful, and that creates passion and purpose. 

How Does the CRAFT Method Help Recovery? 

CRAFT can be used in place of a confrontational intervention to help you decide that the benefits of starting treatment outweigh the cons. It can also be used after you’ve finished treatment to help sustain your sobriety. Regardless of whether you have or have not started treatment, CRAFT works by building up the benefits of living sober, filling the time you once used for substances and connecting you to the things you find meaningful which you’d have to give up if you returned to substances (job loss, friendships, hobbies). 

Put simply, CRAFT shows your SO how to make it easier and easier for you to genuinely want to be and stay sober for your own sake. 

How Does CRAFT Work? 

CRAFT works similarly to CRA but treats your loved one as the patient. The end goal of CRAFT is to help your loved one become someone who’s able to support your sobriety. This happens in 7 steps. 

  1. Giving Support Resources: Before your significant other can help you they need to find the proper headspace. Addiction tends to hurt loved ones the most, leaving them feeling betrayed, resentful, or indignant. Therapists connect them to resources for loved ones of people with addiction like Al-Anon (find a meeting) or reading materials. All of these help the person see you and your addicted self as two different people. They learn that it’s possible and helpful to detest your addiction while loving you. 
  2. Starting Self-Care: Once your loved one has the support they need, they can use it to help them start taking care of themselves properly again. This includes hobbies, eating well, and learning stress management skills.
  3. Getting the History: Once your loved one has found the proper headspace and life-balance skills, they can begin learning how to help you. This starts with detailing the history of your drug and alcohol abuse with the therapist. When you began using, when it got worse, and everything that brought them to therapy. The goal is for the therapist to understand what their goals are for therapy and to see the scope of your addiction. 
  4. Functional Analysis: A functional analysis is a way to examine (or analyze) the role (or function) that drugs or alcohol play in your life. What do you believe the benefits are of substances? Or what consequences do you believe they help you avoid? Once the therapist understands the function that substances serve, he/she can start replacing them with other things that have the same effect. 
  5. Learning Triggers: Triggers are thoughts, emotions, interactions, or places that triggered your addiction in the past. Using your history and functional analysis, the therapist can help your loved one see what led to past relapses. They will also go over ways to help you cope with or avoid those things in the future. 
  6. Communication Skills: Part of CRAFT is using active listening (listening to hear not respond) to strengthen your relationship. 
  7. Training: The therapist begins showing your significant other effective ways to incentivize you towards sober activities, hobbies, friendships, support groups, or jobs that align with your values. The goal is to connect you with things that you find meaningful and require sobriety. Finally, they will learn healthy ways to discourage pro-addiction related choices. 

As a result, your loved one will be able to either encourage you to seek treatment or sustain your sobriety. In addition to finding the headspace they need to help you, they will learn communication skills, how to keep you motivated, and how to encourage you to enjoy your sober lifestyle.  

Get Help Today: 

Tree House Recovery is a holistic rehab center that treats the physical, mental, and social causes and effects of addiction. Including your family and loved ones in this process is crucial to long term success. Nobody recovers alone. A crucial part of our program is building a band of brothers to help you succeed. To learn more call 855-202-2138, read our reviews, or look at our success rates.