Cognitive Behavioral Therapy/Franklin Reality Model

Within our groups, EMERGENCE utilizes the cognitive-based Franklin Reality Model (FRM.) It teaches all persons they have a filtering system which is labeled the "belief window," and that all of us are constantly placing principles on our belief window as a function of age.

Once we accept a principle, we attach rules to it. Our behavior follows our principles and as a result, our behavior generally has an easily predictable result; e.g., if I believe school is a waste of time ... then I will probably drop out. The model also includes four basic human needs: to live, to feel important, to love and be loved, and variety.

There are seven "natural laws" that accompany the Franklin Reality Model:

1. If the results of your behavior do not meet your needs, there is an incorrect principle in your belief window.
2. Results take time to measure.
3. Growth is the process of changing principles on your belief window.
4. If your self-worth is dependent on anything external, you are in big trouble.
5. Addictive behavior is the result of deep and unmet needs (of the four above mentioned needs.)
6. The mind will naturally seek harmony when presented with two opposing principles.
7. When the results of your behavior do meet your needs you experience inner peace.

The "laws" lay out a path to develop self-reflection, self-responsibility, delay of gratification or impulse control, self-efficacy, and self-determination, all of which counter the impulse to abuse substances.

EMERGENCE counselors lead clients through the Franklin Reality Model with examples from their lives. As they practice tracing the natural outcomes of their beliefs or start from the consequences in their lives that they dislike, and trace back to the underlying belief system, they engage in a cognitive restructuring process. The next step is to choose and practice new beliefs and behaviors that can lead to desirable outcomes. Thus, the Franklin Reality Model is the foundation for cognitive-behavioral change when applied to destructive use of alcohol and/or other drugs or problem behaviors.

Maladaptive beliefs are identified and replaced over time. The model is further used to strengthen engagement in other aspects of recovery such as taking responsibility to resolve legal obligations, repair of family relationships, and engagement with community recovery support networks including 12-step programs. FRM brings the key ingredients of most successful psychotherapies - the provision of education, a convincing rationale for the treatment, enhancing expectations of improvement, provision of support and encouragement, behavioral treatments - and can effectively bridge to motivational enhancement and stages of change.

This model is a theoretical base within many of our treatment groups. It is where clients learn, develop and practice positive coping skills. As employed at EMERGENCE, FRM is essentially a framework in which to introduce Reality Therapy. Reality Therapy was developed by William Glasser, who holds the view that people who are behaving in inappropriate ways do not need help to find a defense for their behavior; rather, they need help to acknowledge their behavior as being inappropriate, and then learn how to act in a more logical and productive manner. Reality Therapy is an evidence-based practice. EMERGENCE employs FRM as a cognitive restructuring tool used to coach clients regarding erroneous thinking patterns (thinking errors). Cognitive Restructuring is an evidence-based practice.