The 12-step recovery model was initially developed and implemented by Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) as a fellowship whose goal was to help one another overcome addiction to alcohol. Since its inception, the 12-step model has become universally known and is the most commonly recommended and used treatment modality for a wide array of addictions and compulsions.
Originally written as a guide to help individuals who could not attend AA meetings, The Big Book was quickly adopted as a general guide for the program and is now used as the basis for recovery programs throughout the world. Contact Harmony Hills today at 855.494.0357 to learn about the many beneficial applications of a 12-step therapy program.
Why Is the 12-Step Recovery Model Successful?
The foundation of the 12-step recovery model is the belief that addiction recovery is possible through the support of peers who share like-minded goals and through spiritual growth. Many critics of the 12-step approach confuse spirituality with religion. While some of the steps still depict the language of its religious origins, today’s 12-step programs are not rooted in a specific faith, leaving the meanings of “god” and “higher power” open to individual interpretation. Many refer to the 12-steps themselves as a “higher power.”
At Harmony Hills, we know that the 12-step model of recovery is a proven effective method that has helped millions of people around the globe overcome drug and alcohol addiction. Throughout the decades, treatment facilities, hospitals, doctors, clinicians, and the court systems have all come to respect the effectiveness of 12-step programs. Research on this model shows the following:
- People who participate in 12-step programs decrease drug and alcohol intake compared to those who do not participate.
- Treating people with similar problems in a group setting is a highly effective form of treatment.
- Individuals who abstain entirely from substance use, as advised in 12-step programs, have better long-term rates of sobriety.
So, why is the 12-step recovery model so effective? The simple answer is because it is based on social interaction within a group. The desire to be part of a group is innate. Members of a group:
- Help each other in need
- Share resources
- Cooperate to attain goals
- Provide social interaction & companionship
- Provide support
Further, critical components of the 12 steps are accountability and service, both of which encourage individuals to be their best selves and be responsible for how their actions and choices impact others and contribute to the community.
12 Steps for Mental Health Treatment
The 12-step recovery model and mental health therapy complement each other in numerous ways. Working the 12 steps is to become an improved, healthier version of yourself, which is also the ultimate goal of therapy. Further, substance abuse and addiction are very commonly a symptom of an underlying mental health disorder. Addressing substance use disorders through the 12 steps helps uncover the roots of these issues.
Evidence-based therapies such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) are used by therapists and clinicians to help clients identify, challenge, and overcome maladaptive thinking and harmful behavior patterns. The 12-step recovery model is designed to do the same, but with the support of peers and mentors.
At Harmony Hills, we know that substance use disorders and co-occurring mental health disorders are most effectively treated when the 12-step recovery model is used in conjunction with evidence-based and holistic treatment modalities. To find success, you must completely immerse yourself in the process by:
- Attending and participating in meetings and therapy
- Working the 12 steps
- Making meaningful connections with sponsors and therapists
- Committing to complete treatment
- Developing a relapse prevention plan
- Participating in aftercare
Find Success in a 12-Step Program at Harmony Hills
It is important to remember that perfection is an unattainable goal. Recovery is a journey, and you will face many obstacles. At Harmony Hills, our goal is to provide you with the tools to face and overcome barriers to recovery in healthy ways. To learn more about our 12-step therapy program, contact us at 855.494.0357.