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When it comes to recovery programs there are a number of methods out there. In general, there is no one method that is head and shoulders above the rest. Instead, it depends more specifically on the individual. What one person responds to and finds works may not be the same as what you find works. One of the most popular rehab methods that is designed to help you not only at the beginning of sobriety but to assist in your continued sobriety is a 12 step program. Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) made the 12 step program famous, and while there are other variations, nearly all are based on this program. If you are considering such a program here is what you need to know about it.
Atlantic Recovery Center offers multiple levels of care for those with alcohol and drug abuse disorders. When you come to us for help, we use a variety of treatments and programs to help you successfully return to a productive, happy life. Although you’ve probably heard of it and may have attended meetings, you might still be wondering, “What is 12 step treatment?”
Keep reading to learn the answer and how it impacts your recovery.
What is 12 Step Treatment?
The founders of Alcoholics Anonymous created the 12 steps. Since then, these guidelines have provided a light in the dark to those with many kinds of addictions. Following a 12 step treatment program helps you not only find the strength to maintain your sobriety. It also allows you to help others on their journey to a drug-free life.
What is 12 step treatment? There are many examples, ranging from Narcotics Anonymous to groups aimed at compulsive behaviors.
The 12 Steps are based on spiritual principles, but many non-religious people find that it helps them immensely to work the steps. The language in the steps talks about the presence of a higher being. This encourages those in recovery to look outside themselves for a higher purpose in life. Many participants find their meeting of a higher power, whether that concept to them means God or their forgotten inner strength.
According to Alcoholics Anonymous, these are the following steps in the organization’s program:
- Admit you are powerless over alcohol (or your other addiction)
- Come to accept and believe there is a greater power that can help restore your sanity
- Make a decision to turn your will over to the care of God
- Perform a moral inventory of yourself
- Admit to yourself and to God the nature of your wrongs and what you’re struggling with
- Be ready to have God remove the defects of character
- Ask God for help with removing your shortcomings
- Make a list of people you have harmed and caused problems for (these don’t need to be exclusively because of your addiction)
- Make amends with the people on your list
- Take a personal inventory of yourself. If you identify any wrongdoing make sure to admit it right away.
- Seek to improve your consciousness through prayer and meditation.
- Experience a spiritual awakening based on the previous 11 steps.
There are a number of people who not only are non-religious but who feel uncomfortable with the inclusion of any religious aspects of a 12 step program. AA is not a religious exclusive rehab program and those involved often will provide slight alterations to the religious steps while maintaining the same meaning. However, if you’re curious about non-religious programs Dr. Michael McGee did create a similar, but non-religious take on the popular 12 step program. For this, the steps are as follows:
- Admit you are powerless over alcohol.
- Came to accept and believe you need strength beyond your own awareness and help restoring your sanity.
- Make the decision to entrust your life and your will to the care of the collective wisdom of those who have looked for answers before you.
- Perform a complete moral inventory of yourself.
- Admit to yourself completely and to another person the exact nature of your wrongs.
- Be ready to accept help in letting go of your addictions and your character defects.
- Be open and humble with your willingness to remove your shortcomings.
- Make a list of all the people you have harmed.
- Make direct amends to everyone on the list you created.
- Continue to make a personal inventory of yourself and, when you are wrong, make sure to admit it right away.
- With the help of meditation and calming your mind look to improve your mental wellbeing by obtaining a deeper spiritual awareness and understanding of the AA way of life.
- Have had a spiritual awakening based on the program.
- Essentially, this is the same as the regular AA program, only instead of being accountable to God in some of the steps you are accountable to someone you trust.
Recovery is a lifelong process, and there’s no one right way to approach the 12 steps. As you participate in various programs and treatments at Atlantic Recovery Center, you learn what tools work best for you.
Most of our guests find that they grow in their recovery as they concentrate on each of the steps in turn. As you proceed with your recovery, both in a treatment center and back out in real life, you may find that you have to revisit various steps at some point.
Steps 1 to 3 are crucial and directly address the challenge of continuing your recovery. What is 12 step treatment? Perhaps the best way to understand the importance of the 12 steps is by studying them directly.
Adapted 12 Steps
- The first step admits that you are powerless over your addiction and that it has made life unmanageable.
- The second step involves accepting a higher power and relying on it for your recovery.
- The third step requires you to change your life and give it over to the care of God, as understood by each person.
- In step four, participants take a moral inventory of themselves.
- Step five involves great courage as you admit your wrongs to God, yourself, and at least one other person.
- Step six requires you to trust in the Higher Power to remove your defects.
- In step seven, you actively and humbly asked for the actual removal of those defects.
- Step eight includes making a list of family, friends, and strangers impacted by your addiction. You prepare yourself to make amends where possible.
- In step nine, you follow through and make amends to those listed in step 8.
- To continue your progress, step 10 asks you to maintain your personal inventory and promptly admit when you are wrong.
- In this advanced step, participants pray and meditate, strengthening their connection with God as they understand Him.
- Based on the spiritual awakening that comes with working the steps, those with substance abuse disorders use these principles to guide their lives.
Seek Treatment at Atlantic Recovery Center
Are you seeking a residential treatment program to overcome substance abuse? Come to Atlantic Recovery Center in Davie, FL.
What is 12 step treatment? When you join us at our facility, you find your answer to that question. Let us provide customized treatment to help you maintain lasting recovery. Also, you get the benefit of our incredible staff. Our staff includes licensed therapists and people who have already gone through their journey to recovery.
Whether you choose an inpatient or outpatient treatment program, contact Atlantic Recovery Center today to get answers to all of your questions. Don’t keep life waiting. Your substance abuse disorder has been in control long enough. Now, it’s your turn to look at the future with hope and anticipation.
Understanding 12 Step Recovery
The 12 steps begin with admitting powerlessness, and they end with a promise to carry the message forward. In between, participants make amends to those they’ve harmed. Additionally, they learn to lean on a higher power. Last, they commit to supporting others in times of crisis.
To fully grasp the effectiveness of a 12-step program, participants must fully adopt it. Consequently, they must work through each step honestly and to the best of their abilities. They must examine their own shortcomings and be willing to admit weakness and fault. They must come to realize that nobody is perfect, and everyone needs help occasionally. As a result, clients in a 12-step program learn to accept help and to offer it when needed.
How the 12 Steps Facilitate Addiction Treatment
As part of an addiction treatment program, 12-step recovery makes life more manageable from the beginning. Immediately, clients admit that they’re not the ones in control of their lives. They confess that something else, such as drugs or alcohol, is controlling them. As a result, they ask for help. Simply the act of reaching out can bring immense emotional relief. Then, knowing that there’s a higher power available to lean on and to trust makes those in recovery feel less isolated.
The 12 steps require participants to admit defeat and to call upon others for help. Accordingly, it then requires them to pay that help forward to others when they’re able. It’s an inclusive program that promotes social interaction and accountability — two core elements of recovery from addiction.
Beginning a 12 Step Program
Often, people begin working the 12 steps when they’ve reached their own personal low or rock-bottom. Consequently, this may happen after recovery from an overdose. It may occur after serving jail time for repeated DUIs. Or, it could come as the result of an intervention by friends and family members. Sometimes, participation is court-ordered. In this scenario, clients must undergo treatment to avoid going to jail.
However, there’s no reason to wait until addiction has negative consequences on your life to reach out for help.
It’s important to note that in order for a 12-step program to work, a client must honestly desire change. They must try their best. Last, they must actively work on each step as it’s presented to them.
12 Step Program at Atlantic Recovery Center in Davie, Florida.
Atlantic Recovery Center, located in sunny South Florida, offers a high quality of care for clients who struggle with substance use disorder. Through our 12-step program and related forms of therapy, we help clients achieve lifelong sobriety.
Atlantic Recovery Center is a small, family-centric drug and alcohol addiction treatment center for those in the Florida area. With the latest addition of our seven-bed residential wing, we’re able to help clients ages 18 and up with the challenges and pitfalls of addiction recovery. Our treatment is gender-specific to treat men and women in separate programs, and it’s highly successful. If you or a loved one is interested in learning more about the 12-step program at Atlantic Recovery Center, visit us online today or call 1-866-824-5193. We’re waiting to help you regain a sense of control over your life, and the 12 steps can help you do so.
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