The Dynamogenic Effect

William James was coined as a “Father of Psychology” of the Western Hemisphere in the early 20th century. He wrote in one of his famous text books a chapter on “The Law of Mental Dynamogenesis”. The Law of Dynamogenesis states simply that “One stimulation in motion reinforces another already underway.”

In terms of the Refocus Advanced Recovery philosophy the premise of the Dynamogenic Model describes the client who has come to seek assistance after multiple years of what outwardly seems like successful recovery from addiction. The caller has most likely suffered debilitating trauma at some point and has turned to substances to eradicate the resulting psychic pain.

Recovery from substances was driven by the inherent need to achieve thereby proving to themselves and the world they really are ok. Unable to let their guard down, our prospect may have created a pseudo successful life as an extension of addiction recovery. Achieving what many only dream about was not enough for the exhausted ego driven over achiever. The expected sense of success always rang hollow. An all encompassing belief of not being good enough has patiently dogged these folks all of their lives, and followed them like a shadow into addiction recovery. They have attempted to figure out the source but the hunt has only left them unsatisfied and resentful, a victim of a past fashioned by the hands of others. Attempts to high achieve a way out have failed miserably only to confirm what was known all along; “I am a failure”.

Successful addiction treatment resulted in an understanding of the reason for the suffering and gave a sense that the remedy for this lifelong companion of fear has finally been found. There is a wildly hopeful feeling that gold has been struck! “Now that I know why I am the way I am I will be able to conquer it!”

But the win is always short lived. Finding that knowing why a thing is, will not necessarily cure the root cause of it. Perceived failures continued to stack up, making them even more painful. The mantra becomes, “your just not good enough”, it rings louder and louder until you can no longer stand it. The idea of giving up and surrendering to relief is becoming much more inviting. I have sat with completely defeated clients countless times crying, “Is this really all there is?”. They are at the end of their tether, desperate for release.

Unknown to them this is the very beginning of the trailhead to freedom. They must be in addiction recovery before exploring the root cause of addiction. There must be a sturdy foundation to fall back on before erecting the walls of their spiritual home. In other words as William James explained his Dynamogenic Effect, “One stimulation in motion reinforces another already underway.” In order to address the core issues of life they need to be in addiction recovery. Bandaiding will not get it anymore. The thing is, you had to get here before you could get there. This is the first step to lifelong freedom.

If this account rings true in any way you might have come upon a fork in the road. If it is one last desperate clutching at straws so be it. Before you decide to exit stage left, call me. You just might have found the way out without a final exit.

Again my name is Linda Shaw, text, call, email or use the contact form on this site. Refocus, Explore and uncover who you really are and and find the discovery of You!!


Author: shawlj

I am on new ground now, finally free from many decades of ‘taking care of business’. The letters behind my name became an anchor that I have finally broken free from. You have a standing invitation to walk with me here, where the living is easy and uncluttered.

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