The 12-steps are widely known, even outside the world of recovery. They are often the first thing that comes to mind when “addiction recovery” is mentioned; they are widely recognized as a method of treatment with a long history and a widespread inclusive community. But there are also misconceptions about the 12-steps. To some, they seem too traditional or old-fashioned. Others might think the steps are too focused on religion or too narrow in scope. But the 12-steps are not meant to be so literal — the principles and philosophies behind this model of recovery are more important than the steps themselves, and at Enlightened Solutions, we encourage an open-minded approach while upholding the steps’ central purpose.
As you learn more about substance use disorders during treatment at Enlightened Solutions, you will become familiar with the 12-steps and with 12-step philosophy. We not only believe that there is much to be learned from the steps and their mission, but we also want to set our clients up for success in the long run and give them a long-term recovery community through 12-step groups like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA).
When we talk about the 12-steps during treatment, we use them as guidelines for being well-rounded, present, and respectful toward all those we come into contact with, in our treatment program and beyond. We also use them as a means of learning to set and achieve our goals and to remember what it feels like to accomplish a productive, healthy task. The steps build on each other as we share our teachings and life skills for future use. It’s important to take the time to visualize the benefits of each step in the 12-steps and to recognize when we are ready to advance to the next level. We have created a network of resources for each client to draw from in every aspect of their recovery, and long after their treatment is completed.
In addition, while we don’t stress any particular belief in religion at Enlightened Solutions, we do encourage spirituality as an outlet for stress relief and comfort — no matter what spirituality may mean to you. The 12-steps allow each person to explore this and to discover their own “higher power.” We always ask that everyone respect the individual beliefs of every person in treatment here at Enlightened Solutions. Above all, we share a common goal of changing our lives for the better, holistically.
This step is a challenge; it requires humility and self-awareness that addiction often takes away. While it only requires one moment to commit to and accomplish this step, it can take many months or years before an individual reaches a tipping point and sees the truth of their situation.
Addiction cannot be accomplished on your own. It requires faith and trust, and a purpose to life other than staying alive day to day. This step is about finding a higher power and meaning, whether that is a religious power or an abstract force; this is essential to believing that recovery is possible.
We must learn to accept our own human limitations and put our lives in the hands of our higher power. This step encourages us to recognize our humanity, flaws and all, so we can let go of the things that are holding us back from achieving sobriety and fulfillment.
Self-awareness and self-critique lead to self-improvement. This step helps us become unafraid to look deeply into ourselves and recognize and admit our weaknesses so we can learn how to improve upon them. This step is often best accompanied by individual talk therapy, so your counselor can guide your process.
It is one thing to have a sense in your own mind that you are not perfect, but it is another to say it aloud. Step 5 teaches us to overcome addiction and to move forward in life, through becoming comfortable admitting when you are wrong or when you have caused harm to others.
Part of recovering from addiction is understanding that your life is beyond your control. With this step, you can let go of the stress and pressure of trying to overcome your problems on your own. Then, you make room for something beyond yourself to take over and guide you.
We are only human, but we can strive to be the best version of ourselves. With faith in a higher power, we can believe that it is possible to improve upon our flaws — this step allows us to work toward becoming our best sober selves.
This step offers a concrete exercise that is immensely helpful in a therapeutic setting. As you come to terms with your addiction and the way it has shaped your life, you can also see how it has affected those around you. Naming these individuals and accepting that our actions have consequences for others is an essential realization in the recovery process.
Holding on to guilt or blame causes more subconscious distress than we realize, and it leads to a buildup of negativity in our lives that holds us back and drags us down. In this step, you go through the process of apologizing or admitting your faults to those you have hurt to provide an emotional release for both yourself and those with whom you make amends.
Understanding that you are only human is not a one-time realization. It is a lifelong change in the way you view yourself. This step leads to regular check-ins with yourself to understand where you have made progress and where you still need to work on being the best person possible.
Trust in your higher power will give you the ability to feel like you are working toward a greater purpose in life. When you are struggling with addiction, you feel lost, and you lack the motivation to move forward — but with this step, you can feel driven and empowered again.
The final step is an invitation to a lifelong journey of recovery. After completing the steps, it becomes your mission to uphold the philosophies of the 12-steps in your life and to share them with others as a mentor, sponsor or friend.
The principles of our foundation are steps one, two, and three. What these say is that we surrender, but know that we’re not alone. We’re not going to preach these to our clients, but we will teach something along these lines that will give them the strength and confidence they need to succeed in their recovery. We’ll ask the basic questions, and have you answer them internally as you move through each treatment modality. Visualizing your strength and confidence in yourself helps you understand and prepare for the road ahead, including any obstacles you might encounter.
You don’t need to memorize the steps as we teach the philosophies behind them, but we can go over them with you in individual therapy if you wish. Taking care of your own hygiene and implementing a healthy lifestyle is another part of this philosophy – that we first care for ourselves internally, working our way out from the inside to connect with others. Blending the philosophy in each of the 12-steps with our recovery treatments brings out inner peace, harmony, and balance. Thinking back to our Enlightened Solutions logo and the symbols that come together in the Yin and Yang, the koi fish, and chakras, we strive to bring peace to all that are suffering from substance use disorder. Working these humanitarian ideals into our treatments allows us to ease the inner battle surrounding the mental health conditions, emotional distress and physical illnesses that stem from dependency on drugs and alcohol.
Closing out the past is necessary, and we cannot move forward unless we know where to go. To learn more about our philosophy surrounding the 12-steps and how we integrate them into specific treatments or activities, please contact Enlightened Solutions today at 833-801-5483.
We are here to help. Contact us today and get the answers you need to start your journey to recovery!
Discuss treatment options
Get help for a loved one
Verify insurance coverage
Start the admissions process
Fill out this form and we’ll respond to your message