“Problem drinking” at the executive level can negatively impact an entire organization, including its bottom line.
In a 2015 study, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that in 2010 excessive drinking cost the U.S. economy $249 billion dollars, $77 billion of that in lost workplace productivity.
The higher up the corporate ladder the greater the cost of excessive alcohol use. Problem drinking at the C-suite and executive team level has far-reaching ripple effects, compounding the cost to the organization.
Because of stigma and the popularly held notion that abstinence is the primary treatment goal when addressing problem drinking, too often, alcohol issues aren’t addressed until a “rock bottom” scenario threatens. This doesn’t have to be the case. In fact, interrupting unhealthy drinking patterns and cultivating the development of healthy relationships to alcohol at the top tier represents a fantastic performance and profit leverage point with a tremendous ROI.
According to the CDC study, only 1 in 10 people who met criterion to qualify as excessive drinkers met the clinical definition for alcohol dependence or “alcoholism”. Meaning that 90% of “problem drinkers” are likely to have the ability to reduce their drinking to healthy levels without inpatient treatment.
My experience coaching CEOs and high-level professionals supports the CDCs assertion. The execs I work with routinely replace problematic drinking habits with healthy and sustainable moderate drinking behaviors within a matter of months.
Moderate, low-risk drinking is defined by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) as:
The executive coaching clients I work with find that these healthy limits are attainable and sustainable. For my clients drinking alcohol remains an enjoyable celebratory activity.
This is great news for organizations and those who run them. Problematic drinking doesn’t have to be a drain on the bottom line. Executive coaching that empowers healthy relationships to alcohol is a great way to support the well-being of the executive team member and the organization as a whole.
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Abraham Maslow, renowned American psychologist and espouser of humanism, held that innate to each of us is the drive to embody our highest potential, and that climbing to the top rungs of the ladder of life (actualizing) requires that we overcome the obstacles that impede our progress. Maslow suggested that at the core of our being we ALL desire to become our highest selves, and that we long for “peak” experiences, opportunities to define and prove our true mettle. I agree with Maslow.
For thousands of people at the executive level, alcohol has become a barrier to achieving true peak professional potential. When over-consumption of alcohol becomes habitual, it stands in the way of creativity, drive, relationships, and the mental acuity necessary to thrive your way to the top. The prevailing notion is that if you have an alcohol “problem” abstinence is the only way. My experience coaching executives from coast to coast in moderation has proven otherwise.
Maslow's Hierarchy of Need
My executive life coaching clients are enjoying high level successes because they are learning to examine and improve the whole of their lives, proving that a balanced life is the foundation for profound professional accomplishment. I bring an integrative mind-body approach to those I work with resulting in lives that are characterized by balance and well-being. My clients and I walk up Maslow’s hierarchy together, exploring, tweaking, and improving each key area of life as we go.
Healthy nutrition, sleep, exercise, and relationships are the soil and fertilizer necessary for positive self-esteem and self-actualization. My clients make lasting beneficial changes to their everyday lives that support ongoing balance. They learn anxiety and stress management skills that replace the use of alcohol as a coping mechanism. The result is a mind and body in balance, and a positive relationship to alcohol, setting the stage for ongoing high-performance. The executive life coaching clients I work with regain the power to choose whether or not to consume alcohol, restoring its place as a healthy celebratory activity, not a woeful burden.
I routinely help executives with alcohol concerns decide if moderation could be a path for them. If you are or someone you care about is interested in determining if moderation coaching is a good fit, contact me to learn more about my approach to helping executives restore balance to their relationship to alcohol and pave the way for the achievement of their highest goals. Click HERE to contact me.