Have you been putting off rehab because you don’t want to deal with the 12 Steps? It’s true, for some people a spiritual approach to rehab doesn’t work. They prefer a scientifically backed structure. That’s where the SMART recovery program shines.

How the SMART Recovery Program Works

woman taking part in a smart recovery programSMART is a relative newcomer to addiction counseling. It’s short for self-management and recovery training. It dates back to the early 1990s. Rather than taking the spiritual approach of the 12 Steps, it champions a way of self-reliance.

The program suggests that everyone’s dealing with some degree of addictive behavior. For some, however, it gets so bad that change becomes imperative. When you arrive at this realization, the program kicks into gear. It offers four points.

You start by strengthening your motivation to return to sobriety. This motivation leads to the development of coping skills to deal with cravings. Moreover, you must learn to manage dysfunction of thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. In the long term, you focus on sustainable satisfaction versus scratching an itch.

If this sounds a lot like cognitive behavioral therapy, you’re correct. In fact, the SMART recovery program takes a lot of its impetus from this form of psychotherapy. What endears the program to its participants is the ease with which you can adapt it to your needs. Rather than dealing with theoretical concepts, you can focus on easy-to-grasp rational theorems.

Why Good-Quality Rehab Facilities Offer SMART Meetings

For some who are pursuing sobriety, a 12 Step recovery program is the gold standard for healing. You’ve heard about it. You might have even tried it before. But what happens when it fails?

Worse, what happens when you just can’t get into it? Although the 12 Steps are non-denominational, some people have a tough time with the concept of a higher power. They can’t wrap their minds around it. Maybe they don’t want to deal with this aspect.

Now, they can participate in a SMART recovery program instead. It eliminates the higher power. It shifts the focus on the actions of the individual. Just like the 12 Steps, however, it offers support group meetings for peer assistance.

Incorporating the Approach in a Therapeutic Environment

Neither the 12 Steps nor the SMART approach can stand alone. It’s part of a broader framework of treatments. Examples include:

  • Dual diagnosis treatment for people dealing with co-occurring disorders such as anxiety or depression
  • Cognitive behavioral therapy that addresses dysfunction in one-on-one therapy sessions
  • Dialectical behavior therapy as a way for you to control overwhelmingly strong emotions
  • Adventure therapy to facilitate healthy group interactions and self-esteem building
  • Holistic care that assists with stress management and mindfulness training

Understanding the Importance of Holistic Care

Many rehab programs now include holistic treatments in their services menus. To the untrained observer, drum circles, Tai chi, yoga, and art therapy don’t seem like hard-hitting modalities. However, consider that drug abuse affects people on varying levels. It makes sense to offer them multiple avenues of healing.

All the modalities work together to create a therapeutic environment. Doing so enables you to undergo multiple treatments that result in personal growth. This is as true for the SMART structure as it is for the 12 Steps.

Rehab is an excellent time to try new things and come out of your comfort zone. While you may be more likely to succeed with specific approaches, others can help you expand your horizons. If you could benefit from the SMART recovery program, the therapists at Morningside Recovery want to assist you. Call 855-631-2135 today to schedule an appointment.