SMART Recovery at Seaside Palm Beach
Until very recently, a person in recovery from an addictive disease could be certain of finding mutual support at thousands of 12-step recovery meetings spread around the country and the globe. While the impact that Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), Narcotics Anonymous (NA), Gamblers Anonymous (GA), and many other 12-step based groups has been remarkable, there has been little to offer those who reject AA, NA, or similar programs. In effort to fill this gap, Seaside Palm Beach has begun offering SMART Recovery groups to those interested in the program.
What is SMART Recovery?
SMART Recovery was created in an effort to “support individuals who have chosen to abstain, or are considering abstinence from any type of addictive behaviors (substances or activities), by teaching how to change self-defeating thinking, emotions, and actions; and to work towards long-term satisfactions and quality of life.”
How Does SMART Recovery Differ from 12-Step Programs?
SMART Recovery is a self-empowering addiction recovery support group focusing on self-empowerment and self-reliance through a 4-Point Program:
- Building and Maintaining Motivation
- Coping with Urges
- Managing Thoughts, Feelings and Behaviors
- Living a Balanced Life
SMART does not take a position on addiction being a disease and spirituality is not part of the SMART program (although topics such as “being part of something larger than self” can be worked in) and all SMART Facilitators are required to complete a 30 hour on-line training program prior to becoming a obtaining the title of “SMART Facilitator.”
At Seaside Palm Beach, our SMART Recovery meetings begin with an introduction that welcomes all participants to the meeting. Following the introduction, the SMART Facilitator reviews the meeting guidelines, which have been designed to set the expectations for those taking part in the SMART Recovery meeting:
The goal of SMART Recovery is abstinence from addictive behaviors. We accept that some people are working toward abstinence. We take responsibility for our decisions and allow others to take responsibility for theirs. Thus, there is no buddy system or sponsorship in SMART Recovery.
We respect confidentiality. What you see and hear here stays here. We do not use labels such as “alcoholic” or “addict.” Our focus is on building a future where we are no longer engaged in addictive behavior. We are encouraged to ask questions and to share ideas about what has been helpful. This is referred to as “cross-talk.” Our meetings are focused on the solution to problems. We discourage disruptive side conversations. We recognize that every person must find a solution to the addictive behavior being worked on. Anyone is welcome to mention other paths. We do not bash other approaches or groups out of respect for those who have been helped.
There is no place for “shame” in smart recovery. Everything is treated as an experience to grow from.It is suggested that you attend several meetings before you make up your mind about SMART Recovery helping you. We encourage you to use www.smartrecovery.org and to talk with people. Change doesn’t come instantly. Have patience and feel good about what you are doing. Seek professional help where appropriate. SMART Recovery is not a substitute for professional care nor is it designed to help with serious mental health problems or crisis situations.
Seaside Palm Beach is now offering in-house SMART Recovery meetings to patients and alumni every Wednesday at 7:00 PM EST. Alumni are asked to call Michael Weiner at 561-398-8696 in order to reserve their spot in the meeting.
To learn more about SMART Recovery, or to check the availability of SMART meeting in your area, please visit: www.smartrecovery.org