7 Rules For Incorporating Natural Recovery From Addictions of All Kinds

Stanton Peele By: Dr. Stanton Peele

Posted on May 3rd, 2023 - Last updated: November 20th, 2023
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It might seem uncomfortable for helpers to acknowledge that most people recover without treatment. But we at LPP feel the opposite is true: that seeing change occur naturally around us helps all of us to change.

Thus at LPP we use natural recovery as a road map for helping people to recover. In particular, we derive these seven guides from natural recovery for working with people on discovering their own routes to recovery.

I. You rely on addictions for reasons

In other words, addictions are not mysterious biological phantoms. They are responses to real needs you are trying to fulfill.  In LPP we explore with you your reasons for using — or relying on — whatever addictive habit is troubling you.

II. You bring much to the recovery table

Speaking of the needs your addiction fulfills might put you in a negative frame of mind. But people are best able to change when they recognize and appreciate the strengths and successes they have shown throughout their lives. At LPP we always want you to see your best side, even as you have experienced your downsides.

III. You have positive values

In particular, people have reasons — values — that motivate them to want to change, valuing family, religious beliefs, personal pride, wanting to be a better person. At LPP we ask you what is important and motivating for you, your reasons for wanting to change. Put these values front and foremost in your life.

IV. Learn and practice skills

People are able to become more proficient at things they were once not so good at. Experience improves then; practice makes perfect. LPP is designed around exercises that improve crucial skills, like communications, that will help you in life.

V. Intimacy and community supports are important 

Even if people don’t want to spend their time in therapy support groups, they do find support for progressing in life in their partners, family, friends, and community. Working on relationships — already existing ones or new ones that you might form — is a crucial element for people’s recovery that we explore with them.

VI. All of these things are in service of larger purposes

People don’t improve their lives so as to find larger purposes. Rather, it is because they have larger purposes and seek meaning that they find ways to tackle their addictions and problems. We encourage people to discover such sustaining purpose and meaning in their lives.

VII. You are in charge

The worst mistake people make in joining groups or therapies is in deciding that it is the therapy that drives their change and improvement. You are the one who is making these changes. At LPP we always give credit where credit is due — to you as the agent who is in charge of your life.

So, we see, people changing over time in the real world engages all the practical elements that any change program should be built upon. For us, helping people to change involves engaging them in life in ways that most people eventually discover for themselves.

Enjoy this post? Check out the LPP Podcast episode on the topic of natural recovery below! 

Stanton Peele

Dr. Stanton Peele, recognized as one of the world's leading addiction experts, developed the Life Process Program after decades of research, writing, and treatment about and for people with addictions. Dr. Peele is the author of 14 books. His work has been published in leading professional journals and popular publications around the globe.

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