Addiction disorder affects millions of lives across the globe, and numerous people are undergoing treatment to cure their substance abuse disorder. What makes this health condition even worse is the fact that it has been stigmatized for a long time now, and not many people are open to talking about it. This further pulls people away from seeking the correct treatment procedure and following a healthy routine. Even for addicts who undergo treatment, chances of recovery are shockingly low. This is primarily because substance abuse disorder is a complex disease that can reoccur at any phase of life.

So how can one be sure about the treatment program and follow a set of guidelines to get the best results?

The 12-Steps Program is a model created by the founders of the Alcoholics Anonymous group, who established a set of rules and probably a few of the best ways to overcome addiction. This program gained success and popularity pretty quickly and was adapted by many support groups in its early years. The 12-Steps Program is considered to be one of the oldest treatment programs that can be used for any type of addiction. Although this model focuses on spiritual healing and acceptance of reality, this approach may suffer a change in the future with the evolution of science and technology. However, this program would remain the primary choice for various aftercare efforts.

What Is A 12-Steps Program?

Originally founded by the Alcoholics Anonymous group, this is a program that focuses on the spiritual healing of an individual suffering from alcoholism. The program is also effective for family and friends of those suffering, as they suffer equally when one of their loved one deals with addiction. The basic idea of this model is to make people help each other to maintain and achieve sobriety.

However, this personal realization is hard to achieve unless the individual surrenders to a higher power. The first step in every treatment program dedicated to addiction disorder is to accept the reality and come forward with a zeal to attain sobriety. The 12-Steps Program base their model on this ideology and help people understand their situation while also developing an attitude to bring a personality change.

Often, due to the presence of a strong religious element in the program, people struggle to accept it. For such patients, many treatment procedures offer alternatives to the 12-Steps methodology that focuses on a more secular foundation. These steps were never intended to stop drinking but instead, they were based to provide an insight and find a new way to live a different and more peaceful life.

The 12-Steps

Over the years, these twelve steps have been accepted and implemented by various other groups such as Gamblers Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, etc. The steps have also been altered to remove the Christian tone, to reflect more secular philosophies. Want to know what these 12-steps are?

Honesty

For addicts going in a complete denial mode, recovery begins from where they accept their submission to alcohol and/or the substance they are addicted to. The same is also applicable to their friends and families.

Faith

This is crucial to ignite confidence from within that what you are trying to do, is possible and you will achieve it anyhow. This step is linked to the spiritual belief that for a higher power to work on you, you must believe that it can.

Surrender

Sometimes, you cannot handle everything on your own and that’s where you must surrender. Addicts often feel that they are the ultimate supremes and they don’t need anyone to look after for them. Surrendering yourself to a higher power can provide a sense of peace and a will to fight addiction.

Soul Searching

Before you begin your recovery journey, it is good to understand that it’s a process, and not an event. Similar to this, soul searching is a process that combines the intentions and actions needed to go on the right path. It is a way of looking inwards and progressing to become the person one wants to be.

Integrity

Probably the most difficult part of the 12-Step recovery process. A lot of people don’t succeed in attaining long-term sobriety and the reason is their lack of acceptance. Addiction recovery requires an addict to be honest about the events that had happened in their life, and always speak their truth. Thinking that an unfiltered truth would make us feel vulnerable in front of others is only going to make things worse.

Acceptance

As already said, acceptance is the key to win this fight against addiction. Accepting our flaws and working towards improving them is the best way to recover from addiction.

Humility

Using drugs and having an antisocial behavior is not something that someone willingly practices. This stems from a confused self and has nothing to do with someone’s personal choice. Letting go and asking the higher power to help would relieve the weight off of your shoulders.

Willingness

Like an addict, we hurt people unwillingly and distance ourselves from our loved ones that have an emotional impact on them. Instead of feeling bad about what has already happened, think of ways to make amends. This step is to encourage addicts and willingly make amends.

Forgiveness

If anyone has hurt you in the past or has caused you harm, this step teaches you to forgive those people and move on in your life. Resentment destroys a healthy mind and can breed feelings that eventually turn you into drugs or alcohol. Letting go frees the soul.

Maintenance

Once the process starts, you have to constantly check on yourself to see the progress you’re making. It is important to be completely honest and notice the improvements so that you can carry on.

Making Contact

This is where you reach out to the almighty, the higher power to find out what purpose you have to serve. Every human comes with a purpose and there is always something that we can offer to the world. Realizing that and working towards making it happen can make you feel the happiest.

Service

The last step in the 12-Steps Program focuses on how the rest of your life will be. Everything that you have learned during this program has to be applied in your real-life and use it to build a better and brighter future for yourself.

Conclusion

The 12-Steps Program enhances the spiritual health of an individual which improves the way they think and perceive the world around them. Although it is not a complete recovery program, it can help those suffering to gain a purpose in life and work towards building a healthy and better life.

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