Why Should I Only Focus on the First 5 Steps During Inpatient Care?

Many people who attend inpatient care for alcohol abuse and alcoholism also learn about the benefits of 12-step recovery programs like AA while in the facility. There are a number of reasons why it will be better for you, though, to only focus on the first 5 steps during your inpatient care.

If you are looking for safe, reliable rehab centers that provide 24-hour care in a controlled environment, call 800-839-1686Who Answers? now.

Focus is Key

According to a study from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, “Most 12-step-based programs concentrate on the first five steps during primary treatment, whereas the remaining ones are attended to during aftercare.”

Part of the reason for this is because it is much easier for patients to focus on fewer aspects of recovery than to feel they need to make their way through the entire process before their treatment program is over.

First 5 Steps

Surrendering to a higher power will enable you to take on the rest of the steps.

If you focus on the early steps instead of feeling like you will have to finish all 12 before your inpatient program ends, you will be able to gain more from the process as well as understand one of the most fundamental aspects of 12-step-based recovery.

The goal is not to finish the steps and put them behind you but to allow their guidance to help change you for the better. It doesn’t matter how long it takes you to get through them (or if you ever feel finished with them entirely) because your recovery itself is an ongoing process.

Acceptance and Surrender

As stated by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, “Three key ideas predominate” 12-step facilitation therapy, which is often used to guide individuals in rehab through programs like AA.

Two of these key ideas are acceptance and surrender, concepts that one must come to terms with in step one and three, respectively. Because these are such important parts of the 12-step process and should be given as much time and energy as befits this role, it is better for one to focus solely on the early steps and to ensure that they

  • Can admit to the problem of uncontrolled substance abuse (acceptance)
  • Believe there is a power greater than themselves that can help (between acceptance and surrender)
  • Make a decision to give themselves over to this power (surrender)

Later Steps and Aftercare

Many of the later steps, including

  • Making amends
  • Using prayer and meditation to ask one’s higher power for help
  • Having a spiritual awakening
  • Taking the message of AA to other addicts

are difficult to participate in while attending inpatient treatment. You won’t be able to see everyone you need to make amends to during this time, nor will you be able to carry the message of AA to others outside the program. Therefore, it is better to focus on the later steps after leaving inpatient treatment.

In fact, the latter half of the 12 steps can be an extremely beneficial aftercare program that will help you stay focused on your recovery once you leave your treatment facility.

Seek Help Now

If you want to find an inpatient rehab facility where you can attend AA meetings and practice the 12 steps, call 800-839-1686Who Answers? now. We can help you find the right program for you.

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