The Greatest Salesperson I will ever meet!

– HughK, SMART Recovery Facilitator

Selling Yourself on RecoveryA truly professional salesperson is required to discover what my desires, needs and wants are, and assist me in getting them through using their product or service. Where they can’t help me, they are to tell me, and allow me on my way.

In recovery from addictive behaviour, I have, perhaps, a need for a very powerful salesperson.

They are required to be more powerful than the automatic salesperson in my head – the addictive voice, horse or monkey brain – .

They are required to sell me on the features of my recovery, and FAR more importantly, on the BENEFITS that I will enjoy as part of my recovery.

A successful sales approach has been said to have 4 characteristics: “AIDA.”

Here is what it means for me in my recovery:

A = Attention. What brought me into recovery? How do I think I would I like my life to look? What groups, processes or procedures seem to work?

I = Interest. What really starts to get me really interested about or involved in my recovery?

D = Desire. What driving forces can I cultivate to power my recovery in a better direction for me? This is where I would like to spend a moment.

A = Action. Sign up! Get involved! Commit!

The chasm that exists between Interest and Action – DESIRE – is my greatest challenge.

I saw a TED Talk “Why TED talks don’t change your life much: Neale Martin at TEDxPeachtree” and Neale put forward the point that meaningful memories are laid down with EMOTION.

In selling there is a saying “reason tells” and “emotion sells” – “sell the sizzle rather than the steak!”

Rather than sell just the steak, it is best for the salesperson to sell it cooking – the smell of the meat on the barbeque, the sound of it cooking and being flipped. The delicious aroma of the steak, the sauces and all the crunchy salads with their aromatic dressings.

Getting the person emotionally involved in what the product/service will do for them.

I therefore put forward the suggestion that the HoV (Hierarchy of Values) and the CBA (Cost Benefit Analysis) are at their most powerful when they are reviewed REGULARLY with as much EMOTION as a person can muster.

The CBA and the HoV were critical in my “A” and “I” stages. The HoV is seen as critical in developing my VACI (Vitally Absorbing Creative Interest) and indeed in aligning my choices to those values and the constructive life they represent.

I am beginning to see that along with other urge accepting and overcoming techniques, like “playing the tape”, being more intensely emotional about the CBA, especially the “Costs of Using” and the “Benefits of a Sober Life (not using).”

How to do it?

The answer may lie in the difference between features and benefits.

A feature is what a product/service has or is.

A benefit is what it DOES for the person.

The test of whether it is a feature or benefit is to ask “so what?” after each statement.

As a suggestion, consider ruling a line down a page about a third of the way across. Write each benefit or cost on the left of the page and then ask “so what” after each one. On the right hand side of the page write one sentence, as an answer, that has emotional appeal for you.

Example of a CBA might be for me:

No hangovers – I can get up and get fully involved in a passionate life of my own choosing.

Doing it with my HoV is very powerful as well. An example for me:

Health and Fitness – I can get a consistent sense of wellbeing in my life and approach serenity or inner peace much more closely.

If it is the case that reason tells and emotion sells, as it most assuredly is, then my challenge in recovery is to make my “impulse buys” of a positive and constructive nature as soon as I can.

Becoming the best salesman I can be is a definite step in the recovery direction of my own choice.



HughK is a SMART Online and Face-to-Face facilitator who facilitates a weekly meeting in Melbourne Australia and, with translation available, a weekly online meeting on SROL
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