Growing number of evidence indicates that individuals' motivational structure - the patterning of an individual's way of relating to goals - plays an important role in increasing the risk of alcohol use. Adaptive motivational structure which includes pursuit of important, subjectively attainable, alcohol-unrelated goals is inversely related to substance use. The strength of this relationship increases as the individual has experienced more life problems as a consequence of consuming illegal substances such as alcohol. Treatment by Systematic Motivational Counseling (SMC) which improves motivational structure reduces substance/alcohol use, and the amount of reduction is correlated with the amount of change in motivational structure. Here, evidences from various cultures supporting the claims are presented that demonstrate motivational structure is a predictor of substance/alcohol abuse, its prognosis and intervention outcomes based on SMC.