Maurice Harker is a Clinical Mental Health Counselor (CMHC) based in Farmington, UT. Born in the Pocatello, ID area, he served a mission in Detroit, MI originally started his career focused on marriage therapy. He is the founder of Life Changing Services, which includes programs such as Sons of Helaman, Men of Moroni, Daughters of Light, and others. He is the author of “Like Dragons Did They Fight,” which bridges the gap between the Spiritual and the Temporal (physical) factors of addiction and addiction recovery.
16:30 “For such a smart kid, you sure do some stupid things sometimes”.
- There’s a stereotype that the people we work with and have these problems are the “stupid” or undisciplined ones (they’re not)
19:00 “Watch your thoughts”.
- What if Satan has learned to talk to us (in our heads) in our own voice?
- What happens if he can get us to feel like we’re fighting against ourselves and create a civil war within our own minds – a psychological civil war – fighting ourselves within our own heads?
- What can be the consequences of civil war?
- It is a mistake to convince people they are fighting against themselves – there is an actual enemy fighting against them.
24:30 Fighting “harder” or “smarter” isn’t always the answer.
- Must train the person fighting the battle to acquire the spirit of discernment to recognize microscopic brain chemical changes.
- Thoughts cause chemical reactions (Satan can’t affect chemicals, but can affect thoughts).
- Example: A basketball team calling timeout in an attempt to shake an opposing player out of “the zone,” a mental state wherein the chemicals of their brain are running smoothly.
- Satan attempts to shake us from our “zone” state by creating a change in our chemical reactions (via our thoughts)
31:45 “Chemical Scale” – A useful way to identify how “off” we are.
- Level 10: Crash – A crash, or lost battle, is when your behavior is against your value system.
- Levels 5-10: “Stupid Mode”.
- Level 5: “Give Up Moment”.
- Level 4: “Irrational Conversation”.
- Level 3: “Dude Moment” – the suggestion moment, trigger moment (as called by scientists), the temptation moment (as called by religionists), or the thought moment.
- If we set our alarms to go off at Level 3, we’re missing the opportunity to win the battle at Levels 1 and 2 because those levels are being skipped (i.e. Bishops asking someone to call them AFTER they’re tempted – it won’t work).
- Level 2 – Emotions and Feelings – when looking at the thoughts or emotions themselves and not the chemical associated with them an important level is being skipped.
- Level at which you’re having a strong negative feeling for legitimate reasons.
- Satan’s “psychological massage” moment.
- Level 1 – Chemical level – when you’re not deviant, but just “off”.
- Level 0 – “Awesomeness Zone” – the natural, spiritual state of mind.
40:45 Doing spiritual things to stay connected to God is necessary, but not sufficient.
- We still must train our bodies to respond correctly to being attacked.
- Insight and motivation doesn’t conquer an addiction problem
45:00 The antidote is already in our head.
- The chemical release needed to win our battles is similar to what David felt as he went up against Goliath – the chemical release that gives us the confidence that we can win.
- This is the complete opposite of what someone feels when they’re feeling shame.
- If we communicate with someone in such a way that they are depleted or more scared or weak we increase the likelihood they are going to lose their next battle.
47:00 What is addiction like in the brain?
- There is a mechanism in the brain that functions as a nut and bolt set.
- When you tighten down on a decision and it sticks, the brain is working correctly.
- When you tighten down and it strips the threads, this is addiction – when you tighten down on someone and they keep slipping. How can a nut and bolt set be re-thread so that it can be tightened down?