SMART Recovery, (Self Management and Recovery Training), is a relatively new and incredibly successful method of drug and alcohol addiction recovery. SMART Recovery is an internationally acclaimed and non-profit organization of addiction recovery and sobriety which provides assistance to individuals who are seeking abstinence from addictive behaviors and from substance abuse in general. The approach that is the embodiment of SMART Recovery is a very secular and scientifically based type of approach. SMART Recovery uses non-confrontational, motivational, impassioned, behavioral, and cognitive methods. There is a lot to the SMART Recovery program and, like many other rehab techniques, it contains many different methodologies and sub-techniques. People who participate in SMART Recovery meetings learn different recovery methods that are all derived from evidence-based addiction treatments and approaches.
SMART Recovery seeks to assist each and every individual involved in it to find the key, underlying issues that caused them to pursue drugs and alcohol in the first place. SMART Recovery embodies a multitude of different techniques and programs that all have as their basic, underlying intention the recovery and the abstinence of the individual from drugs and alcohol.
SMART Recovery is based on scientific knowledge. People who participate in SMART Recovery tend to not be specifically interested in doing a religious rehab approach, (SMART Recovery is a secular approach). However, many people of many different faiths can go to a SMART Recovery rehab or a SMART Recovery group or aftercare organization and still get great benefits from it.
SMART Recovery is basically intended to evolve as scientific knowledge evolves. It is not meant to be the same approach, decades after decades after decades like the traditional Twelve Step program. The Twelve Step approach is a tried and true method, but it isn’t for everyone. The SMART Recovery program seeks to use principles of motivational interviewing found in Motivational Enhancement Therapy, (MET), and other various techniques taken from Cognitive Behavior Therapy, (CBT), particularly in the version called Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy, (REBT). These are just a few of the main therapy methods and rehabilitative approaches though, and there are many others.
How SMART Recovery is Conducive to Total, Life Long Sobriety
The organization that is SMART Recovery basically emphasizes four, key areas, (called the 4-Point Program), in the process of recovering people from drug and alcohol addiction. These are:
- Building Motivation
- Coping with Urges
- Problem Solving
- Lifestyle Balance.
The “SMART Toolbox” as it is called, (SMART Recovery has many methods and tools within itself), is a collection of various MET, CBT, and REBT methods and techniques, (or “tools”), which address the above four points.
SMART Recovery is known for being able to help people achieve full sobriety and recovery because it is a highly varied and highly versatile program. SMART Recovery is not, “One way or the highway”, by any means at all. This is a rehab program that is truly able to help people find a total recovery from drug and alcohol addiction by being able to provide those who participate in it with multiple different services and rehabilitative techniques.
When a person engages in SMART Recovery, he or she is able to tackle an addiction crisis from more than just an approach of prevention or coping. SMART Recovery not only teaches those who participate in it how to cope with life after rehab, how to prevent relapse, and how to stay away from the environments that were conducive to addiction in the first place, but it also teaches people how to really address all of the many other aspects of addiction. The key to really beating addiction itself lies in helping the person beat the actual underlying reasons and incentives for drug and alcohol addiction in the first place. This first and foremost must be done. If it’s not done, the person will spend the rest of his or her life just coping and trying desperately to prevent a relapse. All in all, SMART Recovery truly does have the many tools needed for absolutely beating an addiction once and for all and for good.
Long term recovery is the hardest thing for any addict to achieve. Anyone can go to rehab. Anyone can beat a drug or alcohol habit for a short period of time. But the biggest down fall of addiction, (except for death from addiction), is relapse. SMART Recovery seeks to correct this outpoint and this sad truth by servicing those who participate in it with enough tools, enough approaches, enough therapies, and enough techniques that they can really eliminate the crisis for good. With SMART Recovery, individuals actually do have a chance at a lifetime of recovery and sobriety, even if it takes some work to get there. SMART Recovery is a relatively, comparatively new approach, but it has in the last decade proven to be highly successful and beneficial for those who work through it.