What is the Fastest-Acting Benzodiazepine?

Benzodiazepines are one of the most potent prescription medications and treat anxiety and panic disorders and sleep-related disorders. They are also commonly used to treat the symptoms associated with alcohol withdrawal while in medical detox.

Also commonly called benzos, this kind of prescription tranquilizer has a very high likelihood of abuse and addiction. Since they can be so habit-forming, they are rarely prescribed for long-term use. The strength of benzos ranges quite a bit. One of the lowest potency benzos being Valium, and one of the highest is Xanax.

What is the Fastest-Acting Benzodiazepine?

The Fastest Acting Benzodiazepine

There are two benzodiazepines available that tie for the quickest acting. They are Valium, or diazepam, and Tranxene, or clorazepate. These prescription medications will begin working within the first 15-30 minutes after taking them. Ativan and Xanax are very close second and typically begin working 30 minutes to an hour.

The method of use will also determine how quickly you will feel the effects. The numbers above are related to taking the dose orally. Many benzos are available or are often abused via injection. In this case, the effects will happen almost immediately after they enter your system because they reach your brain much faster.

How Long Do Benzodiazepines Stay in Your System?

All benzodiazepines act similarly on the body but with different strengths and reaction times. They work on the body by affecting a neurotransmitter in the brain called gamma-aminobutyric acid. Neurotransmitters are responsible for sending messaged throughout the brain and the spinal cord. GABA is an inhibitor. This means it suppresses the functions of the spinal cord and brain. Essentially it is a central nervous system depressant that causes a calm and relaxed feeling on the body when taken. This is why they are so helpful in treating the symptoms of anxiety disorders and seizures.

Valium, one of the fastest-acting benzos, can stay in a person’s system for up to 10 days after taking it, but that is just true for the drug itself. The agents that are metabolized by the liver can stick around for much longer. The runner-up Xanax only stays in your system for approximately ten days.

High Risk Associated With Benzo Use

Like mentioned before, there is a very high risk associated with benzo use resulting in abuse and addiction. It does not matter which one is being taken. Once dependence and abuse have happened, stopping the drug can be very painful and even dangerous. This is called withdrawal. At this point, your body has become used to having the drug in your system and no longer knows how to function without it anymore properly. In its most severe form, it can cause seizures, strokes, coma, and even death.

When withdrawal is a possibility, we highly recommend getting help through a medically assisted detox. Here, a team of medical professionals, doctors, and addiction specialists will be able to treat your symptoms of withdrawal as soon as they occur. The main goal of detox is to provide a pain-free and safe process for you in a comfortable and supportive environment.

Overcome Benzo Abuse at Recreate Life Counseling

Once detox has been completed, we recommend you participate in one or more of our treatment programs; During this time, we will help you understand the cause of your abuse and addiction and provide you the tools you need to avoid these drugs in the future once you have returned home.

If you or a loved one is suffering from benzodiazepine abuse or addiction, just remember that there is a way out, and you do not have to go through this alone. Reach out to Recreate Life Counseling as we have addiction specialists ready to answer all your questions and help you find the best treatment option.

Published on: 2021-08-20
Updated on: 2024-04-18

What Is the Most Expensive Drug in the World?

When people think of paying a lot for drugs, they typically pay large amounts for illegal substances like cocaine, which can be pretty pricey. However, the ten most expensive drugs in the United States are all prescription medications.  According to an article published by Becker’s Hospital Review, the most expensive drug in the United States is Zolgensma, a drug used to treat spinal muscular atrophy.

People who require this medication pay over $2 million a year out of pocket. After this medication, Zokinvy is the most expensive, costing those who need it over $1 million every year.  

Zolgensma As a The Most Expensive Legal Drug in The World

Unfortunately, major pharmaceutical companies monopolize on the needs of people with rare illnesses who require medication to survive. What makes these medications so expensive, and are there any alternatives that people in need can reach if they are in lower or middle-income brackets? Zolgensma does not currently have any alternatives.

It is used to treat a rare motor neuron disease that leaves children with a slim chance of survival if they don’t have access to the medication before they turn two years old. This drug is only available in the UK, and it is roughly 1.7 million pounds for a single dose. 

The Most Costly Illegal Drug on The Current Market

Of course, medications like this are an absolute necessity, and those who use them will never abuse them simply because they are so unobtainable and expensive. But which illegal drugs on the current market are the most costly, and which expensive drugs are abused the most frequently?

What Is the Most Expensive Drug in the World?

Drug Addiction Is a Very Expensive Habit 

Even people who use easily accessed drugs and relatively easy to afford, like methamphetamine and crack cocaine, often find themselves in a very bad financial place.  This is not only because the chemical substances themselves are expensive but also because people grappling with substance abuse disorders are rarely able to hold down a job and financially support themselves. As a result, they often resort to stealing money from relatives and friends, pawning valuables, and engaging in other illegal activities to support their habit. 

The Most Commonly Abused and The Most Expensive Drug in The United States Is…

 Interestingly enough, the most commonly abused and the most expensive drug in the United States (outside of the prescription medications we previously mentioned) is tobacco. The National Institute on Drug Abuse  Found that tobacco costs American citizens roughly $295 billion every year.  Outside of that, tobacco costs $130 billion alone in health care costs like cancer treatments and the treatment of emphysema and other smoke-related issues.

Alcohol As a Second The Most Expensive Drug in The Country

As one might imagine, the 2nd most expensive chemical substance throughout the country is alcohol, which costs Americans roughly $224 billion every year.  Think about it. If you go to the bar and purchase three alcoholic beverages, you probably spend around $30 every time.  

If you go to the bar 5 times a week, That’s roughly $150 that you would otherwise be saving.  Prescription painkillers like oxycodone and hydrocodone also cost Americans a significant amount of money, including cocaine, marijuana, and heroin.  If you have been struggling with a drug addiction of any type or severity and you take the time to do the math, you will be amazed at how much you spend on an annual basis.

Get Help For Drug Dependence at Recreate Life Counseling

At Recreate Life Counseling, we do more than provide our clients with a comprehensive addiction treatment program. We understand that active addiction strips people of their ability to control their finances adequately. We offer life skills training services that focus on budgeting and regaining financial independence.  We take the time to show each of our clients how much money they will save long-term should they maintain sobriety.

Contact us today to learn more about our drug addiction recovery program or get started with our simple admissions process. We look forward to speaking with you soon and helping you get started on a path that is undeniably much better than the path you are on now.


  • How do drugs compare in cost compared to drug rehab and jail time?

Published on: 2021-08-13
Updated on: 2024-04-18

What Happens When You Inject Meth?

Methamphetamine or “Meth” for short is a very addictive and powerful stimulant that affects the central nervous system and produces an intense and powerful euphoria in its users. It is a white, odorless, and bitter-tasting powder that dissolves easily in water or alcohol. Meth is also called ice, blue, or crystal.

Methamphetamine was developed from its parent drug amphetamine and was originally used in inhalers and nasal decongestants. The National Institute on Drug Abuse discusses methamphetamine and what it does:

Like amphetamine, methamphetamine causes increased activity and talkativeness, decreased appetite, and a pleasurable sense of well-being or euphoria. However, methamphetamine differs from amphetamine in that, at comparable doses, much greater amounts of the drug get into the brain, making it a more potent stimulant. It also has longer-lasting and more harmful effects on the central nervous system. These characteristics make it a drug with high potential for widespread misuse. (NIH)

Methamphetamine is a Schedule II stimulant that is rarely prescribed legally. Medically, it is sometimes indicated for the treatment of ADHD and as a short-term weight-loss aid, but it is more widely used as an illicit substance.

What Happens When You Inject Meth?

Injecting Meth and The Dangers

Meth” can be ingested by either oral consumption, snorting, smoking, or injecting it. Injecting meth, shooting up, or “slamming” is the most dangerous way to ingest the substance. Shooting meth produces a quicker and more intense high than ingesting it any other way. Users will feel the effects usually within 30 seconds of injecting it. This intense rush produces a euphoric high for several minutes. After the initial rush, the energy-based high will last up to eight hours from adrenaline rushing through the body.

Why Injecting Meth Is Very Dangerous

When an individual shoots meth, the effects are felt immediately and are very intense. This intense euphoric high increases the likelihood of an addiction developing. It also increases the user’s tolerance meaning that they will have to continue to take more and more of the substance to experience the same high. Continuously increasing the amounts of meth will cause damage to their bodies and minds to get worse and worse, and the individual is at more risk of experiencing an overdose or fatal overdose.

Injecting any substance puts the user at risk of developing communicable diseases and blood infections because it is very common for users to share needles. Shooting meth can also cause damage to the veins including scarring and vein collapse. The chemicals found in meth will cause inflammation and burning in the veins, and users are also at high risk of developing abscesses.

Side Effects of Injecting Methamphetamine

Injecting meth can also have detrimental legal, financial, and social consequences, but the mental health issues it causes are the most devastating. Meth causes very serious mental health damage. An individual will often start using meth as an escape from untreated depression and anxiety, and it greatly worsens the severity of both. Meth drains the production of dopamine in an individual’s brain.

This causes severe depression after the high has worn off. There are also several long-term mental issues that meth use can cause. Memory loss, suicidal thoughts, mood and personality changes, hallucinations, loss of the ability to feel pleasure, violent and aggressive behaviors are just some of the long-term mental effects.

Shooting meth can also cause several long-term medical issues. Some of the long-term medical effects of meth use can include:

  • Nerve damage
  • Seizures
  • Severe tooth decay
  • Jaw clenching
  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Paranoia
  • Heart problems
  • Skin infections
  • Liver and kidney damage
  • Stroke
  • Withdrawal

Using meth in any form is dangerous, however, injecting the drug can quickly have devastating effects on its user. Methamphetamine use and abuse have become increasingly popular in this country, and people are becoming addicted and suffering vastly from its effects. Methamphetamine addiction is not easy to recover from, but it can be done.

Treatment for Meth Addiction

If you or someone you love is struggling with an addiction, our addiction specialists are available around the clock to assist you. Recreate Life Counseling offers evidence-based addiction treatment. Our cutting edge addiction treatment will lead you on a road to long-lasting recovery. You don’t have to suffer any longer. Call us today.

Published on: 2020-12-07
Updated on: 2024-05-13

Post-Acute Withdrawal Syndrome from Suboxone

There are two main phases of drug and alcohol withdrawal – acute and post-acute withdrawal. Post-acute withdrawal is the second phase of drug and/or alcohol withdrawal, and it typically consists of mild and irritating or disruptive symptoms – not potentially dangerous symptoms, as one might experience during acute withdrawal.

The symptoms associated with acute withdrawal can be severe, and they must be treated accordingly in a drug and alcohol detoxification program. These symptoms typically resolve within one to two weeks, and once a client is deemed physically stabilized he or she transfers directly into an inpatient treatment center. It is not uncommon for individuals to experience symptoms of post-acute withdrawal while they are in inpatient treatment. Unfortunately, these symptoms can be extremely disruptive and can hinder the recovery process. For this reason, post-acute withdrawal symptoms must be thoroughly and adequately treated.

Post-Acute Withdrawal Syndrome from Suboxone

What is Suboxone Used For?

Suboxone, a medication that is often used to treat the symptoms associated with severe opioid addiction, can be extremely habit-forming in and of itself. The post-acute withdrawal symptoms associated with Suboxone can be extremely severe and long-lasting. These symptoms will vary depending on the person, the dose of Suboxone that was being abused, and the presence of any pre-existing mental health conditions (along with several additional factors).

Suboxone and Post-Acute Withdrawal Symptoms

At Recreate Life Counseling, we pay special attention to symptoms associated with Post-Acute Withdrawal Syndrome (PAWS) involving Suboxone and treat them as soon as they arise. We understand that a common symptom of PAWS can negatively affect the ability to stay sober long-term. The most common symptoms include:

  • Irritability and agitation
  • Severe mood swings
  • An inability to concentrate
  • A lack of motivation to complete daily tasks
  • An inability to fulfill personal responsibilities
  • Tiredness, fatigue, and inexplicable physical exhaustion
  • Sleep-related issues
  • Depending on the substance, gastrointestinal issues (like chronic constipation)
  • Lack of a sex drive
  • A lack of enthusiasm regarding activities that were previously enjoyed
  • Mild depression
  • Mild anxiety

More About Suboxone and PAWS

At Recreate Life Counseling, we treat the symptoms of Suboxone-related PAWS as soon as they arise. We understand the negative impacts that these symptoms can have on the recovery process when they are not adequately treated, therefore we prioritize providing the medical and psychological care necessary. If you have been abusing Suboxone either on its own or along with another chemical substance, we are available to help.

Opioid Treatment at Recreate Life Counseling 

Recreate Life Counseling offers comprehensive outpatient treatment and partial hospitalization services in Boynton Beach, Florida. Our recovery program is located in the heart of Southern Florida, an area that has long-since been considered the “recovery capital” of the country. This is not only because of the sunny, relaxing, and coastal location lends itself to long-term healing, but because there are innumerable recovery-related resources available throughout this specific region.

If you have been suffering at the hands of an opioid addiction of any type or severity, we are available to help. Simply give us a call and our admissions counselors will set to work developing a viable intake plan. We understand that choosing the right treatment center can be an overwhelming process, and for this reason, we are available to assist you every single step of the way. As soon as you decide to reach out, we will conduct a no-obligation insurance benefits check to determine how much of your treatment experience is covered by your current provider.

Dealing with the financial component of clinical care can be stressful – for this reason, we work with many major regional and national providers to ensure that the highest level of addiction treatment is easily accessible to all those who need it. To learn more, give us a call. We look forward to speaking with you more and answering any additional questions you might have.


  • How does anesthesia assisted detox return receptors to PRE-dependence state?

Published on: 2020-11-10
Updated on: 2024-07-08

What Are the Street Names for Ecstasy?

Ecstasy is a synthetic drug chemically similar to hallucinogens and stimulants. It has a similar structure as methamphetamines and is a derivative of amphetamines. Ecstasy alters an individual’s mood and perception and also produces feelings of extreme pleasure, increased energy, distorted time and sensory perception, and emotional warmth.

Ecstasy used to be a legal medication. It was developed in 1912, by the Merck pharmaceutical company. The original form of the medication was called “MDMA”, and in 1953 it was used by the US Army in psychological warfare testing. In 1960, “MDMA” was used as a psychotherapy medication to lower inhibitions, and by the 1970’s it was being used as a party drug.

In the 1980s MDMA was the most popular drug for weekend parties. In 1984, it was sold under the brand name of “Ecstasy”, and in 1985 it was banned due to safety concerns.

According to the National Institutes of Health:

MDMA was initially popular in the nightclub scene and at all-night dance parties (“raves”), but the drug now affects a broader range of people who more commonly call the drug Ecstasy or Molly. People who use MDMA usually take it as a capsule or tablet, though some swallow it in liquid form or snort the powder. The popular nickname Molly (slang for “molecular”) often refers to the supposedly “pure” crystalline powder form of MDMA, usually sold in capsules. However, people who purchase powder or capsules sold as Molly often actually get other drugs such as synthetic cathinones (“bath salts”) instead. Some people take MDMA in combination with other drugs such as alcohol or marijuana.

Ecstasy usually comes in the form of a pill, but it can also be injected or taken as a liquid; the liquid form of the drug is called GHB. GHB is a central nervous system depressant, and it is a very dangerous form of the drug. There have been many instances where GHB has been unknowingly slipped into people’s drinks. They are then lured away from their original location and will wake up the next day without having any recollection of what happened to them.

What Are the Street Names for Ecstasy?

What Are the Street Names for Ecstasy?

Ecstasy has many different street names. The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has many alternative ecstasy names listed in their database because drug dealers often change the street names to try and confuse law enforcement.

Known as a party drug, ecstasy comes in pill or powder form; the pill has a variety of logos and colors. The street names put together by the DEA include:

  • Adam
  • Beans
  • Biscuit
  • Clarity
  • Disco Biscuit
  • E
  • Eve
  • Hug Drug
  • Lover’s Speed
  • MDMA
  • Peace
  • STP
  • X
  • XTC
  • Molly

There are also some other street names of ecstasy: Cadillac, California Sunrise, Essence, Elephants, Love Drug, Love Pill, Molly, Roll, Scooby snacks, Snowball, and XE.

Side Effects of Ecstasy Use

Ecstasy affects three different chemicals in the brain, dopamine, serotonin, and norepinephrine. Its effects can give the individual a greater sense of well-being, emotional warmth, enhanced sensory perception, and increased empathy towards others. Some of the side effects of the drug can include:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Confusion
  • Attention problems
  • Decreased libido
  • Irritability
  • Insomnia
  • Reduced appetite
  • Memory problems
  • Impulsiveness

The onset of Ecstasy is about 45 minutes after a dose is taken, and the duration is usually between three to six hours.

Dangers of Ecstasy Abuse

Just like a lot of heroin, cocaine, and other substances in this country are being mixed with fentanyl, Ecstasy can also have a lot of additives. A person may purchase a pill that they believe to be pure Molly, but much of the time it is mixed with cocaine, methamphetamine, ketamine, bath salts, and/or over-the-counter cough medicine. You do not know what you are buying these days, and any of these substances can be extremely dangerous especially when mixed with MDMA.

Treatment for Ecstasy Addiction

If you or someone you love is struggling with an addiction, our addiction specialists are available around the clock to assist you. Recreate Life Counseling provides cutting edge addiction treatment. We tailor our programs to meet the individual needs of each person suffering from addiction. We offer a variety of different treatment programs to help recreate your life and get you on the road to a lasting recovery.


  • How long does Ecstasy stay in your system?

Published on: 2020-10-14
Updated on: 2024-04-18

How Long Are Benzos Detected in Urine?

Benzodiazepines, also known as benzos, like Xanax and Valium are central nervous system depressants that are used to treat things such as anxiety, panic disorders, seizures, alcohol withdrawal, and used as a muscle relaxant. Benzos act on specific receptors called gamma-aminobutyric acid- A, or GABA – A, receptors. They work by attaching to these GABA – A receptors and make the nerves in the brain less sensitive to outside stimulation.

How Long Are Benzos Detected in Urine?

How Does a Urine Test Work for Benzodiazepines

A positive urine test for benzodiazepines will show up as early 2 hours after a person has taken the drug. The length of time a Benzodiazepine will stay in your system is dependent upon the type of benzo you take. Long-acting benzos like Valium can stay in your urine for up to 10 days. Intermediate-acting benzos like Xanax, Ativan, Restoril, Klonopin, and Rohypnol can show up in your urine for up to 5 days. Short-acting such as Halcion and Dalmane only show up in your urine for up to 2 days.

Taking a urine test with urinalysis is the most common way to check for benzodiazepines. The amount of hydration does affect a urine test. Higher fluid intake can dilute the drugs in your system and even create a result that is a false negative.

How Long Do Benzos Stay in Your System?

A person’s metabolism also affects the outcome of a urine test. Every person’s metabolism rate is different and can vary depending on their age, gender, ethnicity, and whether the person has a liver or kidney problem. A person who has a slower metabolism means they metabolize the drug slower and it will take a longer time to leave the body. People with a faster metabolism break down the drug much quicker. Other factors also play a part in how long benzos that in a person’s urine such as:

  • Body mass
  • Duration of use
  • Amount used
  • Urine’s pH
  • The properties of the drug

Multiple other tests can be done to detect benzodiazepines in a person’s system. Blood tests are more invasive than urine tests, however, blood tests have a shorter window of time that a urine test. A hair test can also be done. Drugs accumulate in the outgrowths of a person’s hair follicles. Saliva tests can detect drugs like Xanax up to 3 days after ingestion. Saliva tests have a longer window than blood tests but shorter than urine tests.

Long-term misuse of benzodiazepines will lead to dependency and addiction. After someone has become dependent on this drug, and the drug is removed from the body, the brain will severely struggle to restore its normal balance. This results in a very uncomfortable and even dangerous withdrawal process. Withdrawal symptoms can occur after as little as 1 month of use. The severity of withdrawal relies on a range of variants.

Treatment for Benzo Addiction

If you or someone you love is ready to take the necessary steps to get sober, the best way to start is with a medically assisted detox process. Due to the brains rewiring after prolonged use, withdrawal symptoms can be extremely intense. Once you have detoxed, the best and safest option to get off of and stay off Benzodiazepines is by the use of one of the many treatment programs we offer at Recreate Life Counseling.

Addiction isn’t an easy thing to face. Luckily you do not have to face it on your own. Our admissions counselors and professionals are available around the clock. We are ready to help you or a loved one overcome the disease of addiction. Now is the time to change your life. Let us help you do it.


  • How long does Xanax stay in your system?

Published on: 2020-10-07
Updated on: 2024-04-18

What is the “13th Step” in Recovery

The programs of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA) are 12 Step programs. Twelve-step programs are organizations that were created for recovery from substance abuse. The first twelve-step program that was created is Alcoholics Anonymous; it was created in the 1930s.

The 12 Steps were created to establish guidelines to help those that were struggling with alcoholism overcome their addiction to alcohol. Because the 12-steps and program helped so many people in its early years, today there are a lot of 12-step programs available for several different addictions and compulsive behaviors.

What is the "13th Step" in Recovery?

Is There a 13th Step in Narcotics Anonymous or Alcoholics Anonymous?

The “13th Step” is not officially part of any 12-step program. The definition of “13th stepping” is when an individual who has over a year of sobriety attempts to develop a sexual relationship with someone who is brand new in recovery, or who has less than a year of sobriety. When you join a 12-step program, you are strongly advised against starting a relationship of any kind for at least the first year of your recovery.

The Dangers of 13th Stepping

Starting a relationship of any kind, especially a sexual relationship, when you are new in recovery can be dangerous for several reasons. Here is a list of some of those reasons.

  • When you are new in recovery, you are very vulnerable. For someone, that has been in recovery, to take advantage of a newcomer is exploitative.
  • Starting a new relationship, especially a sexual relationship, can distract you from sustaining recovery.
  • If the relationship doesn’t work out, the potential for relapse is there, and this gives the newcomer justification to relapse.
  • It can drive new members away. This is a betrayal of trust.
  • 13th-stepping can damage the reputation of the program and individual meeting groups.
  • It can make a newcomer feel very unsafe and like they can’t trust the program or anyone in it.

The act of 13th Stepping is detrimental to anyone that is involved. It is detrimental to the program and specific meeting groups.

How Do You Protect Yourself from 13th Stepping?

There are several ways to protect yourself from 13th Stepping. Here are some things you can do:

  • It is best to stick with a sponsor of the same sex if you are heterosexual and of the opposite sex if you are homosexual.
  • If any sponsor in the program makes sexual advances towards you, it is very important to end the relationship immediately. Sponsors are there to help support you and give you advice only. Any other behavior can be damaging to the newcomer.
  • Newcomers’ priority should be their sobriety, so any sexual relationships should be avoided in the first year of recovery. Sexual relationships put the newcomer at too much risk.
  • Flirting is normal to an extent, but if the flirtatious behavior is making the newcomer feel uncomfortable, they should immediately talk with their sponsor about it. Their sponsor will be able to give them advice on how to deal with the behavior.
  • The only time it is acceptable to have a sexual relationship with another member of the program is when both parties are secure in their recovery and both have at least a year of sobriety under their belts. Sometimes even a year of sobriety isn’t enough depending on where each party is in their recovery.

AA meetings and groups, on the whole, are safe, but if you attend a meeting and notice any unethical behavior, it would be best to find a new meeting to attend. People in recovery are far from perfect; no one is perfect, but if you witness this type of behavior, especially right off the bat, it would be in your best interest to get away from it immediately.

Effective Treatment for Substance Use Disorders

If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction, our addiction specialists are available around the clock to assist you. Recreate Life Counseling offers evidence-based addiction treatment to get you to a lasting recovery. What are you waiting for? Call us today!

Published on: 2020-09-18
Updated on: 2024-04-18

Choosing a Power Greater Than Yourself

One of the main components of every 12-step method of addiction recovery is “coming to believe in a power greater than yourself.” Unfortunately, many men and women who could greatly benefit from a 12-step program allow this component to deter them entirely, generally because they believe this entails becoming religious or coming to believe in and put faith in a God. On the contrary, the phrase “higher power” encourages spirituality and the fostering of a spiritual connection – there is nothing religious about it. The step itself reads, “Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.” This is the 2nd step of Alcoholics Anonymous, and it explores spirituality as well as the definition of insanity.

When you enter addiction recovery, you will begin to further understand the meaning of insanity, which is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. What better describes active addiction than this definition of insanity? Those who are inactive addiction will use their drug of choice over and over again despite negative consequences, repeatedly telling themselves, “This time will be different,” or, “I’ll be able to control my intake this time around, I just know it.” Of course, this is never the case.

Time and time again those who are struggling with active addiction will make the same mistake. How do they pull themselves out of that trite old rut and overcome addiction? Well, they certainly cannot do it without help – and this is what “higher power” means. It means understanding that left to your own devices you will not be able to overcome addiction; that you will require some outside help, whatever that may look like to your specific case.

Choosing a Power Greater Than Yourself

How to Choose a Power Greater Than Yourself 

How do you go about choosing a power greater than yourself? We have outlined several simple steps – take a look.

  • First, do not put too much pressure on yourself. There is no “right way” to go about this. Over time you will begin to develop a clearer picture of what the phrase “higher power” means to you. In the meantime, choose something that you do not understand, like the ocean, or something that you know has helped you, like the program of Alcoholics Anonymous.
  • Practice prayer and meditation daily. This will further help you bolster your spiritual connection and will help you discover who or what your higher power is over time.
  • Ask around. Ask other men and women who have years of sobriety under their belts who or what they look to when they think of a power greater than themselves. There is no shame in asking for advice or guidance.
  • Choose something to work with initially, even if it seems silly to you. Many people will choose a doorknob as their higher power as a sort of placeholder until they can further explore their spirituality. The most important thing is that you recognize that addiction is out of your control and that your life has become unmanageable.

Recreate Life Counseling and the Twelve Steps

At Recreate Life Counseling, we passionately believe that spirituality is a fundamental component of every successful long-term recovery program. We also believe that working through the 12 steps of Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous is an important part of every aftercare program; those who work through the 12 steps are far more likely to maintain long-term sobriety after treatment. Recreate Life Counseling offers an individualized and comprehensive treatment program for individuals who are suffering at the hands of substance abuse disorders of all types and severities. To learn more about our program of recovery, give us a call today. We look forward to speaking with you soon.

Published on: 2020-09-09
Updated on: 2024-04-18

How to Successfully Make 9th Step Amends

“Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others”; the 9th step of the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA). By now you have made it through the first 8 steps, congratulations, you have almost made it! There are some important things you must know and do to successfully make 9th step amends.

To work the 12 steps effectively, specifically step nine, you should have a sponsor or someone that has already worked the steps to help you and more importantly be there to support you. Do not try to attempt to work step nine without a sponsor, therapist, or spiritual advisor. Your sponsor can help walk you through this by asking you about your goals in making amends, how you plan to do it, and when. This person should have already worked on step nine, so they understand what it takes and can help guide you through it.

How to Successfully Make 9th Step Amends

What Does Making Amends Mean?

Amends is a compensation for a loss, injury, or damage of any kind. Some of the steps you take to make amends include:

  • Make a list of the harm or damage you have caused.
  • Be willing to repair it.
  • Admit you’re wrongdoings.
  • Figure out the best way to repair the damage.
  • Be patient about gaining the other person’s trust back.

Before you start working step nine, you must have already completed step eight. Step eight says “Made a list of all the people we have harmed and became willing to make amends to them all.” You cannot work the 9th step effectively without doing step eight first.

Types of Twelve-Step Amends

You should know that there are three different kinds of amends: direct amends, indirect amends, and living amends. Direct amends involves taking responsibility for your actions and directly confronting the person you’ve harmed. Indirect amends is finding a way to repair the hurt and damage by doing something other than directly confronting the person like helping others. Living amends is making a change in your life. It is showing others that you have changed your life around and have made a commitment to yourself to end your previous destructive behaviors.

Direct Amends in Recovery

Making direct amends could be a simple “I’m sorry, and I’m working hard to change my life around and make sure it never happens again.” Sometimes it could be repaying money that you owe or promising to pay along with an apology and the assurance that you are working hard to change your ways.

However, it’s not always a good idea to make direct amends, that’s why the second half of the step says “except when to do so would injure them or others.” If the harm you have done is so severe that it could cause more problems, then no matter how good your intentions are, it’s probably best that you don’t make direct amends. It’s possible that the other person is unaware of the harm you have caused them, and making direct amends would make them aware and hurt them badly.

Another instance where making direct amends may not be a good idea is if admitting your wrongs could jeopardize your freedom, which could hurt your loved ones. However, if after talking with your sponsor you decide to proceed anyway, make sure you have spoken to your family especially if you are the head of the household or primary source of income. You don’t want to do more harm than good. Also, it may not be a good idea to make direct amends if it could potentially stir something up.

Indirect Amends And Living Amends

Sometimes an indirect or living amends is the best you can do. Of course, if you can make direct amends you should do so; this is why having a sponsor or advisor to help give you direction is so important. If you aren’t able to make direct amends, then you can volunteer your time or help someone else out. Making amends is more than just an apology, it’s changing your life around and changing your ways; eliminating the destructive behaviors that were once part of your life.

Step nine is one of the scariest steps but isn’t as difficult as we make it out to be. Most people are going to be receptive. Not everyone will be, but that’s not something you can’t worry about. You’ve done your part and attempted to make amends; this is your recovery, not theirs. For a lot of people, step nine is key on the road to recovery. It is a change for the better!

If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction, our addiction specialists are available around the clock to assist you. Recreate Life Counseling has evidence-based treatment to help you recreate your life. What are you waiting for? Call us today!

Published on: 2020-09-04
Updated on: 2024-04-18