For those attempting sobriety for the first time, you have hopefully departed from inpatient treatment with a solid foundation in recovery replete with sober supports and healthy coping skills. You have also likely begun working within a 12-step program of recovery in order to sustain your sobriety and grow as an individual. Spirituality is a major component of any 12-step recovery program, and can prove to be a hard pill to swallow for some. There are a few things you should keep in mind regarding the spirituality aspect of a 12-step recovery program which may help ease your acceptance of a higher power in your life.
First, there is a fundamental difference between organized religion and spirituality. Organized religion is exactly as it sounds - organized! There are time-honored traditions surrounding how and where you worship, as well as established moral and ethical standards which are defined and updated as each religious body sees fit. On the other hand, spirituality is an entirely personal beliefs system. You are free to define your own conception of a higher power, as well as the moral and ethical standards you abide by in order to honor this higher power’s positive influence in your life. This leaves room for those who have had negative experiences with religious bodies in the past to create a higher power in alignment with their personal beliefs and values, rather than forcing the acceptance of prescribed moral and ethical codes.
Now that we’ve addressed the core difference between spirituality and religion, you are hopefully more willing to accept the existence of a higher power working in your life. The other important fact to consider regarding spirituality in the context of a 12-step recovery program is the specific phrasing of the second step, which directly addresses this belief in a higher power. The second step states that we “came to believe a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity”. The step does not demand that we believe, it merely asks that we strive to believe as we continue our journey in sobriety. If you are willing to go to any lengths to stay sober, you should certainly be willing to attempt a belief in a higher power.
The spirituality component of 12-step based recovery programs is crafted so that everyone is able to work a program of recovery, even those who struggle with a belief in a higher power. Do not let any negative experiences with religion in the past prohibit your exploring spirituality in recovery, as they are not at all the same concept. Spirituality is a personal belief, leaving you free to define your higher power as well as your moral and ethical standards. At Evolutions, we believe a 12-step recovery program is an excellent way to secure your sobriety and grow in recovery, and we encourage all our clients to actively participate in some sort of recovery-based organization. Give spirituality a chance, and you may be surprised how quickly you “come to believe” in a higher power yourself!
ABOUT EVOLUTIONS TREATMENT
Evolutions is a drug and alcohol rehabilitation center located in beautiful South Florida. Our holistic approach to addiction treatment centers around addressing and healing the underlying issues at the root of addiction, rather than merely medicating symptoms away.
Our treatment program includes individual and group-based therapy to help clients understand and manage their symptoms and emotions.
If you or a loved one is suffering from addiction, alcoholism, or any co-occurring disorders please call us at (833) 818-3031 or visit www.evolutionstreatment.com