All posts by Jim LaPierre

Jim LaPierre

About Jim LaPierre

Jim LaPierre LCSW CCS is the Executive Director of Higher Ground Services in Brewer, Maine. He is a Recovery Ally, mental health therapist and addictions counselor. He specializes in facilitating recovery (whether from addiction, trauma, depression, anxiety, or past abuse) overcome obstacles, and improve their quality of life. Jim offers a limited amount of online therapy to those with very flexible schedules.

Best Starting Points in Addiction Recovery Treatment

Seeking professional help for addiction is usually overwhelming. In this professional’s opinion, AA and NA (along with your primary care physician) are better starting points, but if you’re going to add a trained clinician, please consider starting with counseling and not therapy. There’s an important difference between the two. Therapy is about the past and […]

Being One of the Cool Kids

My latest favorite song is a guilty pleasure. I just appreciate how it feels. It reminds me of a scar that I don’t look at anymore: “I wish that I could be like the cool kids ‘Cuz all the cool kids, they seem to fit in” – Echosmith, “Cool Kids” Too many of us never […]

The Lost Children of Addiction

There’s this song from the 80’s that’s permanently stuck in my head: “When no one listens anymore, what are words for?…When no one listens There’s no use talking at all – Missing Persons “Words” When nobody listens, it’s hard to feel like you even have a voice. Too many of us got used to holding […]

Tell Your Secrets to a Stranger

A certain percentage of folks just can’t imagine doing therapy. Some have misconceptions about what it entails. Others find the idea of sharing their feelings with someone paid to listen too impersonal. The objection I hear most often is, “What good will it do? It won’t change anything.” “Anything” in this context usually means other […]

Becoming More Comfortable with Self

One of the biggest mistakes I see people make in relationships of every kind is trying to get more comfortable with others and not with themselves. To do this is to place loyalty to others above being true to oneself. Worse, it leaves us stressed and reactive to every new person and situation. I’ve spent […]

The Hardest Person to Forgive

…Is most often ourselves. When you grow up scared, everything you learn about self control is likely to be unhealthy. Without ever realizing it, we learned to hold our breath, and to stuff our feelings. We learned to monitor our environments and the people in them. We are the very best chameleons. Our safety depended […]

Dealing with The Inner Critic

Most everyone I’ve ever worked with has shared with me some variation of, “I’m very hard on myself.” At face value this sounds like a person with high standards and important goals. Dig a little deeper and what we usually find is an unfairly judgmental and rejecting inner critic for whom very little is acceptable. […]

One Woman’s Journey Out of Food Addiction

Addiction in a nutshell: The emptiness demands to be filled. Insatiable longing meets instant gratification. Indulgence. Regret. Shame. Repeat. While every journey out of hell is unique, to a certain extent, addiction is addiction is addiction. We move away from the substance that’s killing us and develop healthier lives. There is one notable exception. It’s […]