What is Twelve Step Recovery?

The Twelve Step program of recovery outlines a course of action designed to overcome addiction and alcoholism. The goal of Twelve Step recovery is to cause an individual to have a spiritual awakening and entire psychic change that allows them to achieve and maintain sobriety. The Twelve Step model is effective because it addressed all aspects of addiction and alcoholism: the mind, body, and spirit.

The Twelve Steps were first published in the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous in 1939. Since then, the Twelve Step model of recovery has extended beyond Alcoholics Anonymous into other areas of addiction. The effectiveness of the Twelve Step model comes from its ability to cause an individual to have a spiritual experience and entire psychic change, which not only allows them to maintain sobriety, but improves every other area of their life as well. The concept of the psychic change came from a meeting between notable psychiatrist Carl Jung and a Rowland Hazard, a man who had been trying and failing to achieve sobriety. In the Big Book, Jung is quoted as saying, “Here and there, once in a while, alcoholics have what are called vital spiritual experiences. To me these occurrences are phenomena. They appear in the nature of huge emotional displacements and rearrangements. Ideas, emotions, and attitudes which were once the guiding forces of the lives of these men are suddenly cast to one side, and a completely new set of conceptions and motives begin to dominate them.” The Twelve Step model is focused on more than just abstinence, but addresses spiritual, mental, and physical aspects of the disease of addiction to improve an individual’s entire life.

The Twelve Step model has proven to be effective in treating men and women suffering from addiction. According to Dr. Amy R. Krentzman in a 2011 study in Alcohol Treatment Quarterly entitled, How Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA) Work: Cross-Disciplinary Perspectives, “Attending 12-Step meetings, considering one’s self a member of a 12-Step fellowship, and working the steps at baseline were predictive of sustained abstinence over one year. Continuous 12-Step attendance (weekly or more frequent) over 3 years predicted sustained abstinence over three years. Across recovery stages, individuals were 4.1 to 8.6 times more likely to achieve sustained abstinence by continuous 12-Step meeting attendance and involvement.” The Twelve Steps have been proven to be highly effective and are one of the greatest tools at one’s disposal to recover from the addiction and alcoholism.

You can achieve a life of happiness, joyousness, and freedom in sobriety. You can make the decision to seek help today and begin building a brighter future. The Lakehouse Recovery Center offers a variety of effective therapeutic techniques, including recovery support groups and 12 Step meetings, to give each individual the greatest chance at achieving and maintaining sobriety. For information about individualized treatment option, please call today: (877) 762-3707


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