Can Drug Rehab Programs Benefit those in Early Recovery?

Can Drug Rehab Programs Benefit those in Early Recovery?


The most useful drug rehab programs are those that encourage holistic growth over the long term.  Really, what else is recovery but consistent personal growth while abstaining from chemicals?  This is the ultimate long term goal for living in recovery so the best drug rehab program encourages this sort of long term growth.

The tricky part is that this sort of emphasis on personal growth and development is really out of place in early recovery.  In fact, almost the complete opposite is necessary in very early recovery.  What keeps you clean and sober at 2 weeks clean is not the same approach that keeps you clean and sober at 2 years clean.  There is a big difference there.

In very early recovery, what is needed is massive action and a laser focus. The only priority is getting through each day without using drugs and alcohol.  For example, this can be best accomplished by most people through the use of drug rehab and/or possibly meetings.  In other words, in early recovery you need lots of action, and most of it needs to pertain directly to recovery.  So therapy, counseling, meetings, rehab…these are all acceptable strategies for early recovery.  The more the better.  In fact, if you don’t fill your days up with any or all of these types of things, then you are in danger of relapsing.  Those who do not put forth a massive effort in early recovery are generally doomed to relapse.

Helping Hands
Creative Commons License photo credit: Peter Friederich

So the best drug rehab program is the one that encourages this massive amount of action early on, but still sets the recovering addict up for success later on in recovery.  How is that accomplished?  By teaching holistic growth and personal development as being the cornerstone of long term recovery.

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In early recovery, and before you have stopped using drugs an alcohol, the biggest problem is resentment.  But after you’ve established some recovery and have built a foundation of success, the biggest problem is complacency.  This cannot be overcome by doing “more” of what you did in early recovery.  You have to push yourself to grow in new ways in order to conquer complacency.  Thus the need for holistic growth.  “Holistic” just means that we are treating the addict as a whole person, so there are many different areas in which they could potentially grow and develop.

Don’t limit yourself to spiritual growth in recovery.  This will only limit you and possibly have you getting stuck in your growth.

Think holistically.

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