Sexual Recovery Blog

How to Create a Strong and Long-Term Recovery Plan

Posted by Anthony Liu on

Research shows that 12-step groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) or Sex Addicts Anonymous (SAA) are vital to a strong recovery plan and long-term sobriety.  While they are not a counseling or treatment program, 12-step groups do offer help in factors associated with long-term sobriety:

  • Access to a solid support network, which helps decrease isolation and shame.  The size of the network of people supportive of recovery is a key sign of whether a person will succeed or fail in recovery attempts;
  • An acceptance of powerlessness over addiction.  Some may claim that using the term “powerlessness” offers an excuse for addicts to not take personal responsibility.   Powerlessness, in actuality, is a reflection of structural, functional, and chemical changes in the brain.  Sobriety can help the brain retrain itself in a healthy manner.
  • Potential mentors, sponsors, and sobriety buddies to share their stories, break denial, and offer accountability.  Members benefit from each other’s experience, strength and hope;
  • Anonymity.  A safe, non-judgmental place for members to share openly about personal and potentially painful issues in their lives;
  • Service to others, as an avenue to connect with others and confront feelings of uselessness or worthlessness;
  • A commitment to a lifestyle change, as members define recovery as making healthy lifestyle alterations and changing unhealthy thinking patterns, as opposed to only stopping an undesirable behavior;
  • Connection with a Higher Power – The 12-step philosophy sees addiction as a spiritual illness (in addition to a disease of the brain and body) and thus offers guidance to developing a relationship with a personal and healing Higher Power.  While the spiritual roots of the 12-step groups are grounded in Christian tenets, a higher power can be another religious entity or simply the power of the group to help the member gain sobriety.

 

In addition, 12-step groups are cost-effective, which grants access to those with little or no financial resources.  Those who combine traditional addiction treatment and 12-Step groups are more likely to achieve long-term recovery than those who use either approach alone.  

 

If you are struggling with addiction issues, meeting with a professional may be beneficial.  Contact Community Presbyterian Counseling Center, located in San Ramon, California if you would like help dealing with addiction issues.

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