Although 12 step programs are more common, SMART has proven to be a good alternative to these group programs. SMART tackles other problems issues associated with addictions like mental illnesses and feelings of unhappiness.
SMART, or Self-Management and Recovery Training, is a support program aimed at people who suffer from addictions and conduct disorders. It trains people to suppress their dependence behaviour by making them focus on subjacent thoughts and feelings.
Members get to minimise and even stop their addiction when on the SMART program.
As new technologies and knowledge emerge, SMART adapts their training techniques accordingly.
SMART is regularly updated to provide strategies researchers find most efficient.
SMART has received recognition for its effectiveness in overcoming addiction by the National Institute on Drug Abuse and the American Academy of Family Physicians.
Smart And The Features
SMART works on the premise that it is an empowerment tool in itself unlike the 12 step program that encourages the members to see themselves as helpless. SMART has trained volunteers who work with the members, helping them identify roots to their problems and habits. Then, participants undergo self trust training, which enables them to control their dependence behaviour. Cognitive behavioural techniques and motivational enhancement are some of the methods used in SMART. A 4-point program introduces the recovering users to these methods.
Each point of the 4-point program is described in detail in 'The SMART Recovery Handbook'. The Handbook also contains ideas and exercises to help one keep off the substance abuse.
The 4-point program is not a step-by-step program. Depending on their current situation, the recovering user can pick on any point they wish.
The SMART program is the best choice for people that cannot overcome their addiction using the 12 stage program. If you need to find a SMART group nearby, we can be of help call 0800 772 3971.
Building And Maintaining Motivation
The most important point is that one must be convinced they want to attain sobriety forever.
Participants are encouraged to make a list of priorities and weigh the costs and benefits of using the drugs versus being sober.
The causes for the desires to use the drugs are also explained on the second point of the program.
The participants learn to use methods like various distraction techniques to suppress cravings.
Another thing they learn is how to stop believing nonsensical thoughts about taking the substance.
Participants Are Taught About Feelings And Behaviours
This point shows the recovering user how to check their own thoughts, emotions and actions to keep them from falling back into addiction.
The feeling of loneliness and despair can be contained by the addict themselves.
Living A Good Life
The decision to stay sober can bring about drastic changes in the lifestyles of the participants.
It is, therefore, essential that one learns how to live a fulfilling life that is also drug-free.
Understanding what matters to you is also very key and this is stated on the fourth point.
Setting up achievable plans is another thing that the addicts are trained to do when in the program.
4 Point Vs 12 Step Programme
The programs that use the 12 stages have some similar features to the SMART program. Each program facilitates recovering of alcohol and drug addicts by having them work through a number of assignments aimed at beating their addiction. Both programs are private ones, which means that each participant 's identity stays within the group. Both programs have been successful in helping participants to overcome their addiction.
The meaning of overdependence on the drugs is what tends to be the contradicting factor between the two set of programs.
SMART doesn't label its participants as "addicts" or as people who have an "illness." This is because there is a lot of negativity associated with these title. The duration taken for recovering from the addiction is not long in the SMART technique. Participants can proceed with their normal lives after 'graduating' from recovery.
The belief in the help for a higher power is what turns off some people from joining the 12-stages program. It is the willingness of a person to overcome the dependence that is used in the SMART program.
Helpful support is, however, provided by SMART and the 12-step programs. People choose the program they feel will suit them best. As the SMART Recovery Handbook says, "What works for one individual in one situation, may fail for another one in the same situation."
Participants of SMART can graduate from recovery and this is a unique feature of this program. The chances of a person going back to the drugs is minimal when the are on the SMART program.
According to SMART, the participants don't feel the urge to use at the end of the program and they have total control over their lives.
By graduation, the SMART members are equipped to live a drug-free life.
Is Smart Right For You
SMART was designed to help every individual backing with an addiction of any type. It also helps those battling behaviour issues such as gambling or eating disorders. Benefits can also be derived by people who are suffering from mental disorders, which are co-occurring such as depression.