the twelve steps

What Is the 12-Step Approach to Substance Abuse?

Most addiction-treatment centers use some variation of the 12-Step Approach. In fact, it’s one of the more familiar methods to clients seeking treatment for substance abuse. The 12-Step Approach doesn’t have to be religious, though many programs are. Working with clients struggling with a dependency the main problem and draw back with the 12 steps is the spiritual connection, all though it can be spiritual or conducted in a completely secular way. The model uses 12 steps, beginning with step one, in which clients acknowledge that they are powerless to control their drinking or drug use. Steps two and three acknowledge a higher power or spiritual force that clients can pray to or meditate with to help restore a feeling of control.

Steps four and five involve informal confession and taking responsibility, while steps six and seven continue to find balance through meditation and prayer. Steps eight and nine involve making amends with the people clients feel they have harmed in their life while abusing substances. Steps 10 and 11 continue with previous actions in taking inventory and prayer or meditation. Step 12 involves helping those who are still suffering from addiction.