12 Reasons To Get Into Recovery
There are countless reasons why 12 step recovery programs work - for those who work it.
Many people try one or two meetings and leave. Sometimes, you're just not ready and that's okay. Pain is a great motivator. But for those who have the courage to keep coming back find a way to build a whole new life. No other groups offer reliable and free support quite like 12 step programs. If you have doubts, read my blog on 12 Step Myths.
Now let's talk about the benefits!
1. Unconditional Support
12 step programs offer incredible support simply because members want to give back. They remember what it's like to be new and hurting. Typically, direct advice is discouraged. For example, no one advises you to leave your partner or kick your teenager out of the house. The program gives you the dignity to decide for yourself - when you are ready.
2. Tools for Any Problem
The tools learned in 12 step programs can help any problem. For instance, if you're struggling, coming to terms with where you are powerlessness is the first step towards a solution. Other principles like acceptance and surrender support positive change and letting go of control.
Slogans like One Day At A Time, Let Go and Let God, and Keep It Simple provide comfort during stressful times. These sayings are great attitude boosters that remind us to focus on what's important. For how slogans work click here to read How 12 Step Slogans Work.
3. It's a Safe Haven
When you've had an argument or received bad news, a meeting provides a safe place to go. When you feel like no one understands your pain, someone in a meeting usually gets it!
There have been many times I've gone to meetings and heard someone with my same issue. Immediately you feel less alone. That connection is hard to replicate.
4. Get (or keep) Your Serenity
If you grew up with addiction, abuse or dysfunctional behaviors, serenity was probably hard to come by. Instead you might felt anxious or depressed. The program models how to be in the moment and enjoy what is.
5. Grow at Your Own Pace
In 12 step programs you set the pace. You come and go as you please. Some people are super committed to work the steps while others aren't ready yet - and there is room for both! You can take what you like and leave the rest.
6. No Strict Rules or Fees
12 step programs do have expenses but there are no required fees. Newcomers are asked not to contribute because the primary aim is to help people who are suffering.
Also, there are no strict rules or authority figures. You can take what you like and leave the rest. Groups are run by volunteers who do service and rotate positions as needed.
7. Build Your Tribe
Building your tribe is probably the most significant benefit in 12 step groups. When you're hurting, there is often a sense of isolation. You don't want to hang out with friends. Finding like-minded people who have the same struggle makes life more manageable!
8. Find a Spiritual Connection
You may have had a negative experience with religion or maybe you're an atheist. Either way you are welcomed. one use the power of the group. Eventually, many develop a new concept of a higher power- but you don't have to!
9. A Sponsor Who Guides
A sponsor is someone you work with you one on one that guides you in the program. They are members that have great recovery. They can laugh and have hope. It is suggested that you look for someone who has what you want - whether it's a great attitude, a gentleness or a similar situation.
10. Learn Acceptance and Tolerance
People come to 12 step programs because they are struggling with their own behavior or someone else's. The program teaches acceptance and tolerance when you learn how to detach from what is going on outside and focus more on you.
11. Amazing Crisis Support
Because there are meetings everyday in most places (even on major holidays), when a crisis hits support is available. Members encourage phone calls to stay connected between meetings. Each meeting provides a phone list. This is meant to provide support and connection between meetings.
12. Be Loved Until You Can Love Yourself
You come to 12 step programs because you're in pain. Learning how to love yourself through addiction or childhood trauma takes time. By getting the support of other members, you eventually learn how to love yourself and heal the parts of you that you dislike.
For more information on 12 step programs check out my resource page.
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