Conquer the “Fear of Running Dry” with Dialectical Behavioral Therapy

For many who struggle with drug and alcohol addiction, the “scarcity mindset” perpetuates the perceived need for more alcohol or drug of choice. What is the “scarcity mindset”? It is one’s worldview that there is never enough to go around; it’s an attitude that focuses on one’s unfulfilled needs (Mullainathan & Eldar, 2013). According to Ivy League professors Sendhil Mullainathan and Eldar Shafir, authors of the book Scarcity: The New Science of Having Less and How It Defines Our Lives, the scarcity mindset go like this: “[W]hen you really want something, you start to focus on it obsessively. When you’re hungry, it’s hard to think of anything other than food; when you’re desperately poor, you constantly worry about making ends meet.” When you are running low on the drug of your choice, you focus on doing whatever it takes to get that next fix so you can avoid the terrible withdrawal symptoms of not having the substance. The fear of running dry produces a tunnel vision for people to focus on the sole goal at hand, which can make them oblivious to other better, healthier choices like finding a permanent solution to their addiction

How does Dialectical Behavioral Therapy work for scarcity mindsets?

Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) is an evidence-based, cognitive behavioral intervention developed by Marsha Linehan, who originally used this method to treat women for anxiety disorders, depression, Borderline personality disorder (BPD) and other emotional disorders (Chapman, 2006). Its widespread effectiveness has made DBT a popular psychotherapy tool in treating dual diagnosis disorders. Individuals are treated for co-occurring disorders associated with substance use disorders, and DBT has been proven to liberate clients from their scarcity mindsets which hold them hostage to negative strongholds. After the medical detoxification stage during which clients’ physical withdrawal symptoms are addressed, addiction therapists work with clients through four stages of DBT treatment which are carried out through individual counseling, group counseling, and consultations with the addiction therapists:

• Stage 1 – emphasis on reducing severe self-harming behaviors
• Stage 2 – emphasis on trauma-informed psychotherapy
• Stage 3 – emphasis on self-reliance, self-care and problem-solving
• Stage 4 – expansion of self-awareness and self-actualization through spiritual fulfillment

What does DBT accomplish?

Dr. Alicia Lawson presents the following benefits in Dialectical Behavior for Substance Abuse:


• Mindfulness skills
• Distress tolerance skills
• Emotion regulation skills
• Interpersonal skills


• Confusion
• Emptiness
• Impulsive behaviors
• Suicidal ideation
• Excessive anger
• Fears of abandonment
• Intentional self-harm
• Cognitive Distortions

How do I know if I found an effective DBT therapy program?

A trustworthy, high-quality treatment center is hard to find. Many claim to be effective, but finding one that actually works – meaning that you are 100% confident that you or your loved one will not suffer from chronic relapses after treatment – is like finding a needle in a haystack. New Method Wellness, a premier dual diagnosis treatment center based in South Orange County, stands out from the rest with its unique 3:1 staff-to-client ratio. Every single client is paired, not with one, but with two skilled licensed and board-certified addiction therapists who are among California’s most distinguished clinicians. New Method Wellness upholds integrity and ethics by procuring prestigious accreditations from CARF International and the Joint Commission, which ensure that you are receiving quality services in substance abuse treatment. Featured on Dr. Phil multiple times and now an Emmy nominee for intervention, New Method Wellness offers a variety of clinical and holistic programs to treat the mind, body, and spirit.

Learn about New Method Wellness Dialectical Behavioral Therapy Training

Are you looking for a DBT therapist? Call 866.951.1824 today!

It’s Time For A New Method


  • Contacting for:
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

+1 (866) 951-1824