How Precommitment Can Help Us Meet Our Goals

Meeting goals requires willpower, motivation, and commitment – but there is also a strategy called “precommitment” that can help. Read on to learn how.

If you have ever tried to lose weight, or put away a little money for a rainy day, you know how the story goes: You start with the best intentions, stoke your motivation, and tell yourself this time you will be successful, only to fall off the wagon a few days later. And you might ask yourself, what happened?

Meeting goals requires willpower, motivation, and commitment - but there is also a strategy called "precommitment" that can help. Read on to learn how.

The answer starts with the way we make decisions. According to Molly Crockett of the University of Cambridge, every decision we make requires a weighing of options. Some options may carry higher reward value than others, and some options require utilizing a little willpower, or employing what is known as a “precommitment.”

A precommitment is essentially an action we take to avoid facing temptations that may derail our goals. For example, we may avoiding purchasing unhealthy food to keep ourselves from eating it, or put money into savings accounts with hefty withdrawal fees to avoid the allure of using it to buy something we might not really need.

To test the effectiveness of precommitments, Crockett and her team recruited healthy male volunteers and gave them a series of choices: they had to decide between a tempting “small reward” available immediately, or a “large reward” available after a delay.

For some of the choices, the small reward was continuously available, and subjects had to exert willpower to resist choosing it until the large reward became available. But for other choices, subjects were given the opportunity to pre-commit: before the tempting option became available, they had the ability to prevent themselves from ever encountering the temptation.

So did using a precommitment strategy help subject resist the temptation of small rewards and hold out for larger ones?

Not just was a precommitment strategy more effective than using willpower alone, Crockett and her team also found that the most impulsive people (those with the weakest willpower) benefited the most from precommitment (Crockett et al., 2016).

“Our research suggests that the most effective way to beat temptations is to avoid facing them in the first place” (Crockett, 2016, para 3)

And precommitment also appears to employ a different area of our brains. Precommitment specifically activates the frontopolar cortex, a region that is involved in thinking about the future. Additionally, when the frontopolar cortex is engaged during precommitment, it increases its communication with a region that plays an important role in willpower, the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (Crockett et al., 2016).

Perhaps it’s not surprising that when we think about how we might respond to tempting options, we also think about the long term consequences of these options, and are better prepared to make better choices – perhaps by gaining a little leverage on ourselves.

Related Online Continuing Education (CE) Course:

Behavioral Strategies for Weight Loss is a 2-hour online continuing education (CE) course that exposes the many thought errors that confound the problem of weight loss and demonstrates how when we use behavioral strategies – known as commitment devices – we change the game of weight loss. While obesity is arguably the largest health problem our nation faces today, it is not a problem that is exclusive to those who suffer weight gain. For therapists and counselors who work with those who wish to lose weight, there is ample information about diet and exercise; however, one very large problem remains. How do therapists get their clients to use this information? Packed with exercises therapists can use with their clients to increase self-control, resist impulses, improve decision making and harness accountability, this course will not just provide therapists with the tools they need to help their clients change the way they think about weight loss, but ultimately, the outcome they arrive at. Course #21-13 | 2016 | 31 pages | 15 posttest questions


Professional Development Resources is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Professional Development Resources maintains responsibility for this program and its content. Professional Development Resources is also approved by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC ACEP #5590); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB Provider #1046, ACE Program); the Continuing Education Board of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA Provider #AAUM); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA Provider #3159); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR Provider #PR001); the Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy; the Arizona Board of Occupational Therapy Examiners; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy (#BAP346), Psychology & School Psychology (#50-1635), Dietetics & Nutrition (#50-1635), and Occupational Therapy Practice (#34); the Georgia State Board of Occupational Therapy; the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Mental Health Practitioners as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed mental health counselors (#MHC-0135); the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board (#RCST100501); the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs (#193); the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists (#114) and State Board of Social Worker Examiners (#5678); and is CE Broker compliant (all courses are reported within a few days of completion).

Enjoy 20% off all online continuing education (CE/CEU) courses @pdresources.orgClick here for details.

Earn CE Wherever YOU Love to Be!

Health Disparities Amid COVID-19 – New Online CE

Cultural & Behavioral Health Disparities Amid COVID-19 is a new 4-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that examines the mental and behavioral health disparities among racial and ethnic minority populations during COVID-19.

Cultural & Behavioral Health Disparities Amid COVID-19 is a new 4-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that examines the mental and behavioral health disparities among racial and ethnic minority populations during COVID-19.

Health Disparities Amid COVID-19 will address social determinants of health and their influence on mental and behavioral health outcomes for COVID-19. Research findings are presented to assist with the knowledge component of racial and ethnocultural responsiveness. We examine the mental and behavioral health disparities of racial and ethnic minority populations collectively and then separately, highlighting African Americans, Native Americans, and Latino/Hispanic groups.

We will investigate how racism and discrimination, economic inequality, healthcare access and utilization, work and home conditions, and mass incarceration contribute to COVID-19 morbidity and mortality rates among racial and ethnic minority populations. Poorer mental and behavioral health outcomes for COVID-19 reiterate the importance of addressing health inequalities, responding to systems of oppression, validating intergenerational trauma, removing barriers to healthcare access, and engaging in culturally responsive care.

This course will encourage you to self-reflect on the role of your own racial and ethnic identity. To aid in this process, self-reflection prompts are included periodically to promote the development of cultural humility. These prompts will help with the awareness component of cultural competency. An awareness of our own cultural values, biases, and assumptions is necessary to acknowledge racial bias, stereotyping, and where we are on the scale of privileged to marginalized, thus assisting in developing the skills necessary for the promotion of physical, mental, and behavioral health equity. Course #40-53 | 2021 | 80 pages | 25 posttest questions

Click here to learn more.

Health Disparities Amid COVID-19 provides instant access to the course materials (PDF download) and CE test. The course is text-based (reading) and the CE test is open-book (you can print the test to mark your answers on it while reading the course document).

Successful completion of this course involves passing an online test (80% required, 3 chances to take) and we ask that you also complete a brief course evaluation.


Professional Development Resources is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Professional Development Resources maintains responsibility for this program and its content. Professional Development Resources is also approved by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC ACEP #5590); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB Provider #1046, ACE Program); the Continuing Education Board of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA Provider #AAUM); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA Provider #3159); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR Provider #PR001); the Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy; the Arizona Board of Occupational Therapy Examiners; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy (#BAP346), Psychology & School Psychology (#50-1635), Dietetics & Nutrition (#50-1635), and Occupational Therapy Practice (#34); the Georgia State Board of Occupational Therapy; the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Mental Health Practitioners as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed mental health counselors (#MHC-0135); the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board (#RCST100501); the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs (#193); the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists (#114) and State Board of Social Worker Examiners (#5678); and is CE Broker compliant (all courses are reported within a few days of completion).

Enjoy 20% off all online continuing education (CE/CEU) courses @pdresources.orgClick here for details.

Earn CE Wherever YOU Love to Be!

Ethics for SLPs 2-Hour Online CE Course

Ethics for SLPs and Audiologists is a new 2-hour online continuing education (CE) course that examines ethical issues that SLPs and audiologists may encounter in clinical practice.

Ethics for SLPs is a new 2-hour online CE course that examines ethical issues that SLPs and audiologists may encounter in clinical practice.

Ethical decision-making is based on awareness, intent, judgment, and behavior. The speech-language pathologist (SLP) or audiologist must be aware that an issue has ethical significance. Then a judgment must be made with the intent to make the ethically correct decision, and action taken. Ethics is about deliberate decisions made to benefit the people involved or to have the least harmful repercussions if a positive outcome is not possible.

SLPs and audiologists encounter ethical issues across the spectrum of practice settings, from pediatric treatment to care of elders in skilled nursing facilities. Ethics for SLPs and Audiologists will present an overview of ethical issues that arise in speech-language pathology and audiology practice, including barriers to ethical thinking, evidence-based ethics, economics, discrimination, abuse, bullying in the workplace, boundaries, confidentiality, social media, and infection control. Updates on the Codes of Ethics are included and discussed. Course #21-45 | 2021 | 41 pages | 15 posttest questions

Click here to learn more.

Ethics for SLPs provides instant access to the course materials (PDF download) and CE test. The course is text-based (reading) and the CE test is open-book (you can print the test to mark your answers on it while reading the course document).

Successful completion of this course involves passing an online test (80% required, 3 chances to take) and we ask that you also complete a brief course evaluation.

This course is offered for .2 ASHA CEUs (Introductory level, Professional area). 

ASHA credit is available until 11/30/2025. ASHA CEUs are awarded by the ASHA CE Registry upon receipt of the monthly completion report from the ASHA Approved CE Provider (#AAUM5168). Please note that the date that appears on ASHA transcripts is the last day of the month in which the course was completed.

Professional Development Resources is also approved by the Florida Board of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, the Ohio Board of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, the South Carolina Board of Examiners in Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, and is CE Broker compliant (#50-1635).


Professional Development Resources is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Professional Development Resources maintains responsibility for this program and its content. Professional Development Resources is also approved by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC ACEP #5590); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB Provider #1046, ACE Program); the Continuing Education Board of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA Provider #AAUM); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA Provider #3159); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR Provider #PR001); the Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy; the Arizona Board of Occupational Therapy Examiners; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy (#BAP346), Psychology & School Psychology (#50-1635), Dietetics & Nutrition (#50-1635), and Occupational Therapy Practice (#34); the Georgia State Board of Occupational Therapy; the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Mental Health Practitioners as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed mental health counselors (#MHC-0135); the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board (#RCST100501); the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs (#193); the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists (#114) and State Board of Social Worker Examiners (#5678); and is CE Broker compliant (all courses are reported within a few days of completion).

Enjoy 20% off all online continuing education (CE/CEU) courses @pdresources.orgClick here for details.

Earn CE Wherever YOU Love to Be!

Florida OT Laws & Rules 2-Hour Online CE Course

Florida OT Laws & Rules is a new 2-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that meets the biennial license renewal requirement of Florida OT/OTAs.

Florida Occupational Therapy Laws & Rules is a new 2-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that meets the biennial license renewal requirement of Florida OT/OTAs.

This course addresses the Florida OT Laws & Rules contained in the Florida Occupational Therapy Practice Act and the Florida Occupational Therapy Rules. The purposes of this course are to (1) provide the opportunity for a comprehensive reading of the two documents listed above, (2) ensure that Occupational Therapists and Occupational Therapy Assistants in the State of Florida are fully aware of the laws and rules governing the license under which they are practicing, and (3) fulfill the requirement that Occupational Therapists and Occupational Therapy Assistants in Florida complete each biennial renewal period two hours of continuing education relating to the Practice of Occupational Therapy. Course #21-46 | 2021 | 42 pages | 15 posttest questions

Click here to learn more.

Florida OT Laws & Rules provides instant access to the course materials (PDF download) and CE test. The course is text-based (reading) and the CE test is open-book (you can print the test to mark your answers on it while reading the course document).

Successful completion of this course involves passing an online test (80% required, 3 chances to take) and we ask that you also complete a brief course evaluation.


Professional Development Resources is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Professional Development Resources maintains responsibility for this program and its content. Professional Development Resources is also approved by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC ACEP #5590); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB Provider #1046, ACE Program); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA Provider #3159); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR Provider #PR001); the Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy (#BAP346), Psychology & School Psychology (#50-1635), Dietetics & Nutrition (#50-1635), and Occupational Therapy Practice (#34); the Georgia State Board of Occupational Therapy; the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Mental Health Practitioners as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed mental health counselors (#MHC-0135); the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board (#RCST100501); the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs (#193); the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists (#114) and State Board of Social Worker Examiners (#5678); and is CE Broker compliant (all courses are reported within a few days of completion).

Enjoy 20% off all online continuing education (CE/CEU) courses @pdresources.orgClick here for details.

Earn CE Wherever YOU Love to Be!

Mindfulness – New Online CE Course

Mindfulness: The Healing Power of Compassionate Presence is a new 6-hour online continuing education (CE) course that will give you the mindfulness skills necessary to work directly, effectively, and courageously with your own and your clients’ struggles.

Mindfulness: The Healing Power of Compassionate Presence is a new 6-hour online CE course that will bring the power of mindful presence to your practice.

Compassion towards others starts with compassion towards self. Practicing mindfulness cultivates our ability to pay intentional attention to our experience from moment to moment. Mindfulness teaches us to become patiently and spaciously aware of what is going on in our mind and body without judgment, reaction, and distraction, thus inviting into the clinical process, the inner strengths and resources that help achieve healing results not otherwise possible.

Bringing the power of mindful presence to your clinical practice produces considerable clinical impact in the treatment of anxiety, depression, PTSD, chronic pain, high blood pressure, fibromyalgia, colitis/IBS, and migraines/tension headaches. As you will learn, the mindfulness practice has to be experienced, rather than talked about. This course will provide you with an excellent understanding of exactly what mindfulness is, why it works, and how to use it. You will also develop the tools that help you introduce mindful experiences in your practice, and how to deal with possible client resistance. Course #61-04 | 2021 | 90 pages | 35 posttest questions

Click here to learn more.


Professional Development Resources is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Professional Development Resources maintains responsibility for this program and its content. Professional Development Resources is also approved by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC ACEP #5590); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB Provider #1046, ACE Program); the Continuing Education Board of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA Provider #AAUM); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA Provider #3159); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR Provider #PR001); the Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy; the Arizona Board of Occupational Therapy Examiners; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy (#BAP346), Psychology & School Psychology (#50-1635), Dietetics & Nutrition (#50-1635), and Occupational Therapy Practice (#34); the Georgia State Board of Occupational Therapy; the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Mental Health Practitioners as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed mental health counselors (#MHC-0135); the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board (#RCST100501); the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs (#193); the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists (#114) and State Board of Social Worker Examiners (#5678); and is CE Broker compliant (all courses are reported within a few days of completion).

Enjoy 20% off all online continuing education (CE/CEU) courses @pdresources.orgClick here for details.

Earn CE Wherever YOU Love to Be.

Online CE: Buy 2 Courses Get 1 Free

PDR’s Week of Giving Thanks Online CE Sale

As we embark on what may be the strangest Thanksgiving of our lives, it’s important to stay focused on what makes Thanksgiving a special holiday: family, gratitude, and thankfulness.

While we may not be able to enjoy the day with all of our loved ones, there is always something to be thankful and grateful for. And for us, that is you.

As a special thanks, we are extending our annual Black Friday sale for a full week so that you may stock up on CE that you can earn in the comfort (and safety) of your own home. All of our online courses are now Buy 2 Get 1 Free:

Online CE Sale: Buy ANY 2 courses and get a third for FREE in our Week of Giving Thanks CElebration @pdresources.org. Sale ends December 1, 2020.

Add ANY 3 online CE courses to your shopping cart and the lowest priced 3rd course will automatically deduct at checkout (courses must be purchased together, one free course per order). Have a coupon? Apply it at checkout for additional savings!

{Here’s a coupon if you don’t: Enjoy 20% off all online continuing education (CE/CEU) courses @pdresources.orgClick here for details.}

Sale ends Tuesday, December 1, 2020. Offer valid on future orders only.

Click here to buy 2 online CE courses and get 1 FREE!


Professional Development Resources is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Professional Development Resources maintains responsibility for this program and its content. Professional Development Resources is also approved by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC ACEP #5590); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB Provider #1046, ACE Program); the Continuing Education Board of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA Provider #AAUM); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA Provider #3159); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR Provider #PR001); the Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy; the Arizona Board of Occupational Therapy Examiners; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy (#BAP346), Psychology & School Psychology (#50-1635), Dietetics & Nutrition (#50-1635), and Occupational Therapy Practice (#34); the Georgia State Board of Occupational Therapy; the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Mental Health Practitioners as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed mental health counselors (#MHC-0135); the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board (#RCST100501); the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs (#193); the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists (#114) and State Board of Social Worker Examiners (#5678); and is CE Broker compliant (all courses are reported within a few days of completion).

Earn CE Wherever YOU Love to Be.

Building Resilience in Children – New Online CE Course

Building Resilience in Children is a new 3-hour online continuing education (CE) course that offers a variety of resilience interventions to help children flourish.

Building Resilience in Children is a new 3-hour online CE course that offers a variety of resilience interventions to help children flourish.

Health professionals are treating an increasing number of children who have difficulty coping with 21st century everyday life. Issues that are hard to deal with include excessive pressure to succeed in school, bullying, divorce, or even abuse at home.

This course provides a working definition of resilience and descriptions of the characteristics that may be associated with better outcomes for children who confront adversity in their lives. It also identifies particular groups of children – most notably those with developmental challenges and learning disabilities – who are most likely to benefit from building resilience training. The bulk of the course – presented in two sections – offers a wide variety of building resilience interventions that can be used in therapy, school, and home settings. Course #31-26 | 2020 | 62 pages | 20 posttest questions

Click here to learn more.

Building Resilience in Children provides instant access to the course materials (PDF download) and CE test. The course is text-based (reading) and the CE test is open-book (you can print the test to mark your answers on it while reading the course document).

Successful completion of this course involves passing an online test (80% required, 3 chances to take) and we ask that you also complete a brief course evaluation.


Professional Development Resources is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Professional Development Resources maintains responsibility for this program and its content. Professional Development Resources is also approved by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC ACEP #5590); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB Provider #1046, ACE Program); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA Provider #3159); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR Provider #PR001); the Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy (#BAP346), Psychology & School Psychology (#50-1635), Dietetics & Nutrition (#50-1635), and Occupational Therapy Practice (#34); the Georgia State Board of Occupational Therapy; the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Mental Health Practitioners as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed mental health counselors (#MHC-0135); the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board (#RCST100501); the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs (#193); the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists (#114) and State Board of Social Worker Examiners (#5678); and is CE Broker compliant (all courses are reported within a few days of completion).

Enjoy 20% off all online continuing education (CE/CEU) courses @pdresources.orgClick here for details.

Earn CE Wherever YOU Love to Be!

New Therapy Tidbits Fall 2020 CE Course

Therapy Tidbits Fall 2020 is a new 1-hour online continuing education (CE) course comprised of select articles from the Fall 2020 issue of The National Psychologist, a private, independent, quarterly newspaper intended to keep psychologists informed about practice issues.

Therapy Tidbits Fall 2020 is a new 1-hour online continuing education (CE) course comprised of select articles from the Fall 2020 issue of The National Psychologist.

The articles included in Therapy Tidbits Fall 2020 are:

  • Stress for Psychologists Piles up During Pandemic – Highlights the ways in which the pandemic has affected psychologists and stresses the importance of caring for oneself.
  • Sex Therapy Begins with Asking about Sex Life – Provides a brief overview of Sensate Focus therapy and Teyber and McClure’s Interpersonal Process Therapy for helping clients.
  • Minority IQ Scores Boosted to Enable Execution – Discusses the issue of boosting IQ scores for minorities in sentencing and briefly explains the outcomes of relevant court cases.
  • Increase in Financial Scams of Older Adults Creates Need for Expert Evaluators – Describes consumer fraud targeted at older adults and discusses Lichtenberg’s financial-decision tools to help inform capacity evaluations.
  • Skinnerian Steps Needed to Increase Successful COVID-Reduction Methods – Suggests possible positive strategies to encourage the general public to follow recommended safety guidelines during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Task Force Moves Ahead on Suicide Prevention Initiatives – Provides information on the efforts of the  PREVENTS (President’s Roadmap to Empower Veterans and End A National Tragedy of Suicide) Taskforce to raise public awareness and create new support systems and training in suicide prevention.
  • Picking the Right Marketing Practices – Offers advice on effective marketing strategies to grow your practice.
  • A Guide to Child Custody Evaluations and Expert Testimony – Highlights key points to bear in mind before becoming involved with child custody evaluations and expert testimony.
  • Finding Your Inner Expert – Outlines steps to finding your field of expertise as a clinician.
  • How Academia’s Misguided Efforts at ‘Diversity’ Education is Failing Students – Highlights the need to look at how cultural competency is currently taught in most universities and suggests how this can be improved.

Course #11-39 | 2020 | 17 pages | 10 posttest questions

Click here to learn more.

Therapy Tidbits Fall 2020 provides instant access to the course materials (PDF download) and CE test. The course is text-based (reading) and the CE test is open-book (you can print the test to mark your answers on it while reading the course document).

Successful completion of this course involves passing an online test (80% required, 3 chances to take) and we ask that you also complete a brief course evaluation.


Professional Development Resources is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Professional Development Resources maintains responsibility for this program and its content. Professional Development Resources is also approved by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC ACEP #5590); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB Provider #1046, ACE Program); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA Provider #3159); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR Provider #PR001); the Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy (#BAP346), Psychology & School Psychology (#50-1635), Dietetics & Nutrition (#50-1635), and Occupational Therapy Practice (#34); the Georgia State Board of Occupational Therapy; the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Mental Health Practitioners as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed mental health counselors (#MHC-0135); the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board (#RCST100501); the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs (#193); the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists (#114) and State Board of Social Worker Examiners (#5678); and is CE Broker compliant (all courses are reported within a few days of completion).

Enjoy 20% off all online continuing education (CE/CEU) courses @pdresources.orgClick here for details.

Earn CE Wherever YOU Love to Be!

Stigma vs. Addiction – An Ongoing Problem

Overcoming addiction is hard. There are the cravings, the feelings of shame, the intense impulses, uncontained emotions, the questioning, and the everlasting feelings of self-doubt. And then, there is the stigma.

Overcoming addiction is hard, and made harder by stigma. We must overcome our biases, assumptions, and fears to find helpful ways to treat it.

From 1999 to 2017, more than 399,000 people died from drug overdoses that involved prescription and illicit opioids, and yet, a stigma around opioid use remains.

In a review tracing the treatment of opioid use disorder in the United States dating back to the 1930s, with particular focus beginning with the widespread prescribed use of opioids to address symptoms of chronic pain in the 1990s, Dennis McCarty, Ph.D., a professor of public health in the OHSU-Portland State University School of Public Health; Kelsey Priest, M.P.H., an M.D./Ph.D. student in the OHSU School of Medicine and OHSU-PSU School of Public Health; and Todd Korthuis, M.D., M.P.H.; an associate professor of medicine (general internal medicine and geriatrics) in the OHSU School of Medicine, found that, “Opioid prevention and treatment efforts in the United States remain constrained and consequently stigmatized by a legacy of federal restrictions, an unwillingness to acknowledge idiopathic addiction, and a lack of science-based interventions for chronic pain” (McCarthy et al., 2017).

McCarthy and his team call for a system overhaul – one that embraces evidence-based therapies integrated into primary and specialty care. In short, one that acknowledges opioid addiction as a very real and pressing problem.

“The lessons learned in the first two decades of the new century have been hard learned and painful,” explains Mccarthy (McCarthy et al., 2017).

Lessons that many feel we cannot afford to repeat. Opioid addiction, whether we like it or not, is here. Our job is to try to understand it, to find helpful ways to treat it, to provide the resources those battling it need.

What we must overcome are our biases, our assumptions, and our fears about it. In the words of Martin Luther King Jr., “Darkness cannot drive out darkness: Only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: Only love can do that.”

Related Online Continuing Education (CE) Courses:

Overcoming the Stigma of Mental Illness is a 2-hour online continuing education (CE/CEU) course that explores the stigmas around mental illness and provides effective strategies to overcome them. Course #21-24 | 2018 | 35 pages | 15 posttest questions

Nutrition and Addiction: Advanced Clinical Concepts is a 2-hour online continuing education (CE) course that examines addiction from a nutritional perspective. Drug addiction is an alarming problem in America, and one that is not receiving the treatment it needs. Compounding the problem is that addiction often leads to nutritional deficiencies, which predisposes the addict to a host of related health complications. Treatment recovery programs that also offer nutritional education have been found to significantly improve three-month sobriety success rates. Course #21-14 | 2017 | 30 pages | 15 posttest questions 


Professional Development Resources is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Professional Development Resources maintains responsibility for this program and its content. Professional Development Resources is also approved by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC ACEP #5590); the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB Provider #1046, ACE Program); the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA Provider #3159); the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR Provider #PR001); the Alabama State Board of Occupational Therapy; the Florida Boards of Social Work, Mental Health Counseling and Marriage and Family Therapy (#BAP346), Psychology & School Psychology (#50-1635), Dietetics & Nutrition (#50-1635), and Occupational Therapy Practice (#34); the Georgia State Board of Occupational Therapy; the New York State Education Department’s State Board for Mental Health Practitioners as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed mental health counselors (#MHC-0135); the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker & MFT Board (#RCST100501); the South Carolina Board of Professional Counselors & MFTs (#193); the Texas Board of Examiners of Marriage & Family Therapists (#114) and State Board of Social Worker Examiners (#5678); and is CE Broker compliant (all courses are reported within a few days of completion).

Enjoy 20% off all online continuing education (CE/CEU) courses @pdresources.orgClick here for details.

Earn CE Wherever YOU Love to Be!

Mindfulness, Yoga, and Good Mental Health

It may be the last thing you want to do when you are having trouble focusing, are upset by negative news, or distracted by an inconsiderate co-worker, but a few minutes of mindfulness, yoga, or meditation may be just what you need to maintain good mental health.

A few minutes of mindfulness, yoga, or meditation may be just what you need to maintain good mental health amid stressful times.

“Hatha yoga and mindfulness meditation both focus the brain’s conscious processing power on a limited number of targets like breathing and posing, and also reduce processing of nonessential information,” explains Peter Hall, associate professor in the School of Public Health & Health Systems. “These two functions might have some positive carryover effect in the near- term following the session, such that people are able to focus more easily on what they choose to attend to in everyday life.”

After following thirty-one study participants who completed 25 minutes of Hatha yoga, 25 minutes of mindfulness meditation, and 25 minutes of quiet reading (a control task) in randomized order, Hall found that after both the yoga and meditation activities, participants performed significantly better on executive function tasks compared to the reading task. Specifically, goal-directed behavior, and the ability to control knee-jerk emotional responses, habitual thinking patterns and actions improved.

Moreover, Hall and his team also found that mindfulness meditation and Hatha yoga were both effective for improving energy levels, with Hatha yoga having significantly more powerful effects than meditation alone.

“There are a number of theories about why physical exercises like yoga improve energy levels and cognitive test performance. These include the release of endorphins, increased blood flow to the brain, and reduced focus on ruminative thoughts,” notes said Kimberley Luu, lead author on the paper.

There may be something particularly powerful about combining physical postures and breathing exercises with mindfulness meditation. The ability to observe thoughts, emotions and body sensations with openness and acceptance, seems to be a key component of improved executive functioning, while improvements in flexibility and strength come with a host of overall health benefits. Whether in helping us focus, appreciate what we have, or simply feel better physically, yoga, meditation, and the ability to shift our energy are fundamental to good mental health.

Related Online Continuing Education (CE) Courses:

Mindfulness: The Healing Power of Compassionate Presence is a 6-hour online continuing education (CE) course that will give you the mindfulness skills necessary to work directly, effectively and courageously, with your own and your client’s life struggles. Course #60-75 | 2008 | 73 pages | 27 posttest questions


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