Things You Can Do to Complement 12 Stepping
Perhaps, you are getting sober all on your own and relying on a 12 step program to offer you the consistent support you need. Maybe, instead, you went into inpatient rehab and your current 12 step program is a way to maintain the group therapy that helped you so much in your inpatient treatment. Further, you could have gone to outpatient treatment and used 12 step programs throughout at another means of support. People find themselves in a 12 step program for a variety of reasons.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse notes: “Most drug addiction treatment programs encourage patients to participate in group therapy during and after formal treatment. These groups [12 step programs] offer an added layer of community-level social support to help people in recovery with abstinence and other healthy lifestyle goals.”
If 12 stepping is working for you, you might be interested in related activities that can help you more easily go through the steps. Making the most out of your program leads to making the most out of recovery.
If you are interested in 12 stepping or already are and want extra support, 12Step.com is the source to call. You can contact us at 800-895-1695 and speak with someone today.
So much of a 12 step program focuses on being actively honest. You can see it reflected in the steps themselves:
- Step one: honest with oneself
- Steps four and five: honesty with a higher power and others (family, health care providers, therapists, peers)
- Steps eight and nine: active steps toward honesty
- Steps ten through twelve: daily honesty practice
Remaining aware of your honesty is a constant challenge and there are a couple ways you can help yourself maintain rigorous honesty.
Keep a Journal
Journals can be used in many ways, but a daily and nightly journal practice is a good place to start.
In the morning, spend about 20 minutes writing down all of the thoughts in your head. Don’t worry about making sense. Let those ideas spill out of you and on to the page. By doing so, you free your mind of a lot of the baggage that you would otherwise cart around with you for the rest of the day. By removing the junk from your mind and putting it carefully away in the journal, you allow yourself to be more present for the rest of the day. This can help relax stressors that may make you want to fall back on using or lying.
At night, spend another 20 minutes reflecting back on your day. Make note of times you struggled and keep a rigorous account of your honesty. Over time, you will see trends. It will be more clear which things in your life work as triggers. Maybe the weather has a big effect on you. Maybe it’s your family. Journaling will help you to figure it out.
Journaling is a form of meditation and it works really well for a lot of people. If you are one of them, you may want to meditate in other ways as well. If journaling isn’t working for you, you may also be interested in trying other forms of meditation.
The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health reports: “Meditation is a mind and body practice that has a long history of use for increasing calmness and physical relaxation, improving psychological balance, coping with illness, and enhancing overall health and well-being. Mind and body practices focus on the interactions among the brain, mind, body, and behavior.”
In addition: “There are many types of meditation, but most have four elements in common: a quiet location with as few distractions as possible; a specific, comfortable posture (sitting, lying down, walking, or in other positions); a focus of attention (a specially chosen word or set of words, an object, or the sensations of the breath); and an open attitude (letting distractions come and go naturally without judging them).”
There is verifiable, scientific proof that meditation helps people with smoking cessation.
Both meditation and journaling can help you and they are easy, low-cost complements to 12 stepping. If you are interested in more activities that can help you to make the most of your 12 step program, contact 12Step.com at 800-895-1695.