By Arthur H. Woodard
Recovery First is a motto used in the recovery community to remind us of the primacy of the recovery process for those individuals seeking or supporting recovery from a substance use disorder. In my role as a person coaching a process of recovery I provide recoverees with a framework that offers a set of concepts and ACTivities that guide and support their focus on the priority of prACTicing placing recovery first.
This framework is informed and guided by the first stage of Kathleen R. O'Connell's work on the Stages of Recovery that we explore in Recovery Coach Academy. Stage One of the Stages of Recovery is appropriately entitled Stabilization in that it guides a process of performing ACTions and ACTivities that enCourage recoverees to prepare for and prACTice Recovery First in stabilizing their lives.
Again in my role as a recovery coach I have come to believe that "Proper Preparation Prevents Poor Performance". In supporting the staging of a successful recovery performance I offer recoverees recovery tasks and ACTivitieS that provide a focus with the expectation that a recoveree will engage in honest work and effort or preparation through this process. The concept of staging a recovery performance or process with a recoveree is the intentional effort to teach recoverees a framework for placing recovery first and supporting their efforts to live such.
In the spirit of asking good questions, I frame the tasks and ACTivities offered in Stage One-Stabilization in the form of encouraging a recoveree's curiosity and wonder in stabilizing and preparing for recovery first. Some of the questions include:
- What is addiction? How do describe the process of addiction? What are you learning and need to learn about addiction?
- Do you believe you require a physical detox in order to stabilize and improve your physical well-being?
- What do you need to be and learn to do better in order to be able to socialize and participate in a group setting?
- Do you need help in learning how to break your pattern of isolating?
- Do you have role models that provide you with examples how to perform healthy recovery prACTices? If not, where might you find such role models?
- How well are you able to manage your anxiety and stress? What tools do possess to do so? What tools do you need to learn and prACTice to improve your ability to manage anxiety and stress?
- What skills and strategies do you need to learn and prACTice to be more self-responsible? Are you aware of what it means to be self-responsible and are you able to respond to taking responsibility for your self?
- Are you learning to ask for help and support? Are you willing to ask for help and support? Are you willing to accept help and support when you ask for it?
HELPing recoverees Learn and Live Recovery First through Stage One of the Stages of Recovery has proven to be a power-full resource in my humble effort to HELPrepare ad HELPerformance.
Check out the Recovery Hub's training calendar for information on how to become a recovery coach.