Dr. David Hawkins breaks down for you the five pillars needed for change in order to determine whether healing is possible for the narcissist in your life.
Change is a complex and often elusive concept, especially when dealing with individuals who exhibit narcissistic and emotionally abusive behaviors. Dr. David Hawkins, a prominent figure in the field of relationship therapy, has unveiled a compelling framework known as the “Five Pillars Needed for Change” . These pillars serve as a guide to help individuals determine whether real change is possible in such challenging situations. In this article, we will explore each of these pillars in detail, providing insight into the path to transformation and personal growth.
Pillar 1: Recognition and Responsibility
The journey toward change begins with the crucial step of recognition and responsibility. Dr. Hawkins highlights the importance of acknowledging the problem and taking ownership of one’s actions. Real change cannot occur unless one is willing to recognize their role in the issue at hand. While it’s tempting to deflect blame or minimize one’s involvement, owning the problem is the cornerstone upon which genuine transformation is built.
Dr. Hawkins stresses that recognition is not a one-time event but a process that unfolds over time. It involves a series of steps, leading to greater ownership and understanding. Avoiding responsibility by pointing fingers or making excuses only perpetuates the destructive behavior patterns.
Pillar 2: Intervention
The second pillar, intervention, is a critical moment in the process of change. Dr. Hawkins emphasizes that the past can often predict the future unless a significant intervention takes place. For those dealing with issues such as addiction, emotional abuse, or narcissism, intervention is the turning point that leads to treatment and accountability.
Intervention is not for the faint of heart, and it involves a clear and decisive confrontation. In this moment, the impact of harmful behavior is outlined, expectations are set, and a pathway towards change is established. While it may be met with resistance, intervention has the power to disrupt the patterns of behavior that have caused so much pain.
Pillar 3: Treatment
In cases of emotional abuse, narcissism, and related behaviors, generic counseling may fall short. Dr. Hawkins advocates for issue-specific treatment provided by skilled clinicians who specialize in these complex issues. Treatment encompasses a range of topics, including victim empathy, taking full responsibility, offering a healthy apology, and cultivating a healthy interpersonal lifestyle.
The Marriage Recovery Center, founded by Dr. Hawkins, offers structured programs which are designed for men who acknowledge their emotionally abusive behavior and are committed to change. The programs provide a safe and supportive environment for individuals to confront their actions and work toward healthier patterns of behavior.
Pillar 4: Accountability
Accountability is an integral part of the change process. Dr. Hawkins underscores that genuine change necessitates accountability, and this responsibility should not be shouldered by the victim. Instead, individuals are encouraged to insist on their partner’s participation in a structured growth process, including treatment and accountability for change.
Accountability involves setting clear consequences for failing to follow through with agreements. It is not a matter of parenting or controlling the other person but of creating a framework for change. These consequences serve as a reminder of the commitment to transformation and growth.
Pillar 5: Maintenance
The fifth and final pillar is maintenance, which represents the ongoing effort required to sustain progress and personal growth. Change is not a one-time event but a continuous journey. Just as one must keep practicing a musical instrument or a foreign language to maintain proficiency, maintaining personal growth is an ongoing process.
Individuals need to be vigilant and attentive, catching any slips or relapses promptly. Maintaining change is not only about preventing backslides but also about understanding the reasons behind them. It is a dynamic process that involves regular self-reflection and adjustment to ensure that the transformation is enduring and not merely temporary.
The “Five Pillars Needed for Change,” as outlined by Dr. David Hawkins, provide a comprehensive and structured framework for assessing the potential for change in individuals who have displayed narcissistic and emotionally abusive behaviors. While change may not be guaranteed for everyone, these pillars offer a roadmap for assessing readiness and facilitating personal growth and healing.
Recognizing the problem, intervening with a clear and decisive confrontation, seeking issue-specific treatment, holding individuals accountable for change, and maintaining progress are the steps that compose this transformative journey. While change may be a challenging process, following these five pillars needed for change, offers a structured approach to assess the possibility of lasting transformation. Ultimately, the path to change is one that can lead to healthier relationships and personal well-being for all parties involved.
Also read: 7 Signs of Emotional Neglect in Marriage
About Dr. Hawkins:
The internet is inundated with hyperbole and misinformation about narcissism, leaving many people confused and hopeless. Get the facts on narcissism and emotional abuse from someone who has been researching, writing about and treating narcissism and emotional abuse for over a decade.
Dr. Hawkins is a best-selling author and clinical psychologist with over three decades of experience helping people break unhealthy patterns and build healthier relationships.
He is the founder and director of the Marriage Recovery Center and the Emotional Abuse Institute which offers education, training and counseling for people who want to break free of, and heal from, emotional abuse. Whether the perpetrator of the abuse is your spouse, partner, parent, boss, friend or family member, we offer practical advice for anyone trapped in a toxic, destructive relationship.
In addition to narcissism & emotional abuse, you’ll learn about the lesser known forms of abuse, including covert abuse, reactive abuse, spiritual abuse, secondary abuse, relationship trauma and much more.