The first step in the recovery process is effective screening and assessment process.

Screening and assessment is the process in which an individuals condition is evaluated to determine the fundamental nature and degree of the addiction and the kind of program and/or therapy that will be most effective and appropriate. This is best done by an addiction recovery professional who is competent in assessing the individual’s condition and make the best recommendation.

An effective recovery program requires that the patient/client partner themselves with others, specifically the program or professional and/or recovering community. While the program/professional/recovering community brings assistance, guidance and support, the patient/client must be willing to apply themselves with total dedication if their attempt to recover is to be successful. The three ingredients that the patient/client must bring is their own honesty, openmindedness and willingness.

Honesty is key in order for the recovering person to address the fundamental denial and misinformation that have contributed to the addiction cycle in their lives. Honesty is best expressed by the individual’s commitment to be transparent about the reality of their lives, specifically how they feel about their addictive behaviors and dependencies, and the consequences it has had on their lives and others. Being honest with the people who are there to help them is indispensable. People who are unwilling to get honest do not recover from addiction.

Being open-minded is essential for recovery. If a person cannot recognize and accept all avenues for treatment, support and recovery that are available, they will have a very difficult time breaking the cycle of addiction. Addicts usually have fear based personalities and attitudes which  lead to stubbornness and antagonism, and this usually keeps the addict stuck blinding them from recognizing and applying solutions that will make a difference in their lives. People who are successful in recovery have learned to lay themselves open; entrusting themselves to others who are there to help them.

An addict has to be willing to change. There is an old saying in successful recovery environments that goes like this, “There is only one thing you have to change, and that one thing is everything about you.”

If a person wants to recover from their addictions long term, they must be willing to change their attitudes and thought processes. And the best way to change addicted attitudes and thoughts long term is to be willing to change their behaviors today.

This month's step
Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for the knowledge of his will and the power to carry it out.

This week's scripture
Trust GOD from the bottom of your heart; don't try to figure out everything on your own. Listen for GOD's voice in everything you do, everywhere you go; he's the one who will keep you on track.
Proverbs 3:5-6 The Message

This week's quote
"This is what I think, in essence, prayer is. It is the breaking of silence. It is the need to be known and the need to know. Prayer is the sound made by our deepest aloneness. Prayer is man’s impulse to open up his life at it’s deepest level. People pray because they cannot help it. In one way or another, I think, all people pray."
Frederick Buechner