The first of the 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) reads: “We admitted we were powerless over alcohol—that our lives had become unmanageable.” Once you can acknowledge that you have a problem with alcohol or substance use, then you can begin taking action.
Long-term recovery is possible for all who are willing to accept that they need help and seek assistance. Professional guidance is the surest method of finding long-term recovery. Those who seek addiction treatment receive instruction on breaking the cycle of addiction. Clients also learn how to establish a support network and are introduced to mutual-help groups like AA or Narcotics Anonymous (NA).
Both AA and NA utilize the 12 Steps, which are a set of guidelines to follow for achieving lasting recovery. Each program includes literature, such as The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous. Within the bindings are hundreds of pages that instruct people with alcohol or another substance use disorder how to work and rework the steps.
Recovery is a never-ending process of making progress in one’s life, after all. A commitment to working and reworking the steps is to accept that you have a complex disease that requires continuous maintenance.
The Big Book also includes scads of wisdom to help men and women navigate the world clean and sober. Acceptance is a word that comes up often in recovery, and The Big Book speaks to that too. Those who are new to working a program will quickly discover that acceptance is one of the mainstays of addiction recovery.
Acceptance is the Answer in Addiction Recovery
Seeking help is to accept that you have a behavioral health disorder that you cannot contend with alone. Opting to go into treatment is accepting that you have an addiction. No matter how much time you accrue in recovery, it’s vital always to remember that you have a disease. If you do, then it will make working a program significantly less challenging.
Those who are unable to accept the reality of their potentially life-threatening condition regularly are likely to relapse. It’s worth noting that acceptance is an action that is beneficial in every facet of your life. Cases in point, the abridged passage below is from page 417 of The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous:
And acceptance is the answer to all my problems today. When I am disturbed, it is because I find some person, place, thing, or situation—some fact of my life —unacceptable to me, and I can find no serenity until I accept that person, place, thing, or situation as being exactly the way it is supposed to be at this moment…Until I could accept my alcoholism, I could not stay sober; unless I accept life completely on life’s terms, I cannot be happy. I need to concentrate not so much on what needs to be changed in the world as on what needs to be changed in me and in my attitudes.
The wise words above are worth taking the time to memorize, and they will help you when you find yourself losing serenity. The passage will help you remember that the only thing you can change is yourself. Accepting that truism will make it less challenging to stay focused on your recovery and progress.
Addiction Treatment and Recovery in California
Please call Hemet Valley Recovery Center & Sage Retreat at (866) 273-0868 for a confidential assessment if you are struggling with drugs, alcohol, or a co-occurring mental health disorder. HVRC is a Chemical Dependency Rehabilitation Hospital (CDRH); we provide specialty services for chronic pain, older adults, young adults, and families.
At HVRC, we focus on empowering clients “toward discovering their true potential through a greater understanding of the 12-Steps and the mind-body connection.” You can contact our admissions team around the clock to have your questions answered and learn more about our programs and services.