“Keynotes” are my brief comments about life and recovery and are intended to provide insight, inspiration, wisdom or humor to your day.

Yesterday I had the opportunity to assist 2 people who are invested in making their marriage better. What brought them into my office is that their behavior had devolved into something that wasn’t positive for them (criticism, yelling, labeling, etc.) which are ingredients of verbal abuse. I asked them to look at the wheel of power and control and to identify the behaviors they practiced that were not healthy nor functional for them. These behaviors were listed outside of a box they drew on their writing tablet.

Then we looked at the Equality wheel. On the inside of the box which I called the “Problem Solving Box” (originally named by Dr. Bill Adams) they were invited to list behaviors that will keep them safe, increase their communication, enhance their ability to stay in their functional adult and eventually cultivate relational intimacy that has escaped them for most of this year.

This couple has a lot of work to do but together, they made a commitment to seek to eliminate negative behaviors that were hindering their personal and relational growth and to recommit to producing behaviors (like empathy, date nights, listening to each other) that would enhance their ability to be productive in their relationship.

If you were to create a “problem solving box” what behaviors would be inside of it? What behaviors would you simultaneously seek to eliminate?

Dr. Ken McGill 

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About Dr Ken McGill

Dr. Ken McGill is an ordained minister and has been involved in counseling for more than 25 years. Dr. McGill holds a Bachelor's degree in Religion from Pacific Christian College (now Hope International University), a Certificate of Completion in the Alcohol and Drug Studies/Counseling Program from the University of California at Los Angeles and a Masters degree in Clinical Psychology from Antioch University. Dr. McGill received his Doctorate in Clinical Psychology with an emphasis in Family Psychology from Azusa Pacific University in May, 2003. Dr. McGill's dissertation focused on the development of an integrated treatment program for the sexually addicted homeless population, and Ken was "personally mentored" by dissertation committee member Dr. Patrick Carnes, a pioneer in the field of sex addiction work. Dr. McGill authored a chapter in the text The Clinical Management of Sex Addiction, with his chapter addressing the homeless and sex addiction. Dr. McGill is also a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in the States of Texas and California and Mississippi, and is a Certified Sex Addiction Therapist, through the International Institute for Trauma and Addictive Professionals (IITAP). Dr. McGill had a private practice in Glendora, CA (Aspen Counseling Center), Inglewood, CA (Faithful Central Bible Church), and Hattiesburg, MS (River of Life Church), specializing in the following areas with individuals, couples, families, groups and psychoeducational training: addictions and recovery, pre-marital, marital and family counseling, issues related to traumatization and abuse, as well as depression, grief, loss, anger management and men's and women's issues. Dr. McGill also provided psychotherapeutic treatment with Student-Athletes on the University of Southern Mississippi Football and Men's Basketball teams. Dr. McGill served as the Director of the Gentle Path Program, which is a seven-week residential program, for people who are challenged with sexual addiction, sexual anorexia, and relationship issues. Dr. McGill also supervised Doctoral students in the Southern Mississippi Psychology Internship Consortium with the University of Southern Mississippi. Dr. McGill was inducted into the Azusa Pacific University Academic Hall of Honor, School of Behavioral and Applied Sciences, in October, 2010. Dr. McGill currently works as a Private practice clinician with an office in Plano, Texas, providing treatment with people who are challenged in the areas mentioned above.

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