I grew up in the late ’60s where sex, drugs and rock n roll were just part of the deal. I was drunk and fell into my first AA meeting in Hollywood, CA in 1988, where I sat on the floor sobbing the whole time. People gave me space and allowed me the courtesy of sitting in my feelings. I was a train wreck and didn’t understand what was going on with me. I remember being pissed off that no one would help me find my car!
One of the first things I noticed is that they asked me to admit my powerlessness over my addictions. I was always searching for answers and read authors like Wayne Dyer, Tony Robbins, Shakti Gawain, and Rhonda Byrne. Powerless? Nope… I create it all and I still believe that I am “at cause” for my experiences. One of my favorite movies is The Wizard of Oz. My guiding light or north star is the idea “you had the power all along, my dear”. I agree that we don’t have control over other people, places and things, even that is a matter of perspective and interpretation.
I attended traditional and non-traditional recovery programs and achieved abstinence. Anxiety, depression, and anger still plagued me and I knew that I needed help. Somehow I knew I needed to dig deep and clear my beliefs and with the help of a coach; we completed a core belief inventory. I knew about SMART Recovery and started attending online in-person and online meetings, and I became a facilitator.
Most of my family died from addictions because they just couldn’t resonate with traditional recovery programs. I love SMART Recovery because they base it on Rational Emotive Behavior and Cognitive Behavior therapy. It’s rooted in science and the tools and program evolve as scientific knowledge evolves.
SMART Recovery doesn’t require you to believe in a Higher Power or believe that addiction is a disease. The tools will work when you apply them in your life. The locus of control is on the inside because it’s an inside job! At SMART Recovery, we encourage participation and cross talk. The more you show others how to use the tools, the deeper you’ll understand how to apply them to other areas in your life.
The tools will work with any addiction and many of us call it (destruction of choice). SMART Recovery doesn’t label participants as “addicts” or as having a “disease.” We consider these labels discouraging and unproductive.
We base the program on the Stages of Change Model and you can use it for any change in any area of your life that you’d like to make. Once you learn the strategies and tools of SMART Recovery, you’ll be able to use them in every area of your life and for a lifetime.
The 4-Point Program teaches self-empowering skills to help you:
Point 1: Build and Maintain Motivation
Point 2: Cope with Urges
Point 3: Manage Thoughts, Feelings, and Behaviors
Point 4: Live a Balanced Life
So, if you’re struggling with addictions and don’t resonate with traditional methods, check out SMART Recovery! It is with an abundance of gratitude that I report that nowadays, there are other non-12 step recovery models to check out. Please don’t give up. Reach out to me, let me know where you’re stuck. I offer a free strategy session to determine how I may be of service.