Non 12 Step Ways to Get Sober

non 12 step ways to get sober

The majority of residential addiction treatment centers use a 12 step program such as Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous. AA and NA are very popular in the world of recovery, but they’re not the only way to quit using. There are many other options, and different things work for different people. If you’ve tried a 12 step program without success, or if you simply prefer not to join a 12 step program, you can explore non 12 step ways to get sober.

Non 12 Step Fellowships

The group mentality of AA is what makes it so strong. Communities of support exist within other fellowships, too, however, that aren’t 12 step based. You can look into groups such as LifeRing, SMART, SOS, and more. Most non 12 step ways to get sober are secular and don’t focus on spirituality. They all have different models for maintaining a healthy, sober lifestyle.

Non 12 Step Treatment Centers

Even though most treatment centers use a 12 step program, there are many that don’t. In fact, non 12 step treatment centers are becoming increasingly popular. There are many nice facilities that offer different approaches and non 12 step ways to get sober. Many non 12 step treatment centers put more emphasis on individual counseling and other types of emotional therapy.

Woman Shares her Story on Addiction and Recovery outside of the 12 Steps

Recovery Coaches

A recovery coach is someone who you get to be your mentor as you quit using. They’ll guide you and help you along the way in sobriety, oftentimes through personal experience or expert knowledge. Qualified recovery coaches can help individuals who aren’t interested in the 12 steps. While many coaches do encourage use of the 12 steps, there are those who don’t.

Individual Therapy

Individual therapy is very often helpful for all recovering addicts, whether they use the 12 steps or not. For people who don’t use a 12 step program, individual therapy can be even more useful. With a therapist, you can do things like explore your motivations for using, address your self-esteem, work through post-traumatic stress, learn ways to modify your behavior and thinking patterns, and more.

Alternative Medicine

Alternative medicines and treatments can also be explored if you’re looking for non 12 step ways to get sober. Alternative treatments include things like acupuncture, aromatherapy, chiropractic care, homeopathy, meditation, and hypnotherapy. Some people have found success with alternative treatments, either in addition to a 12 step program or independent of it.


There are many different types of medications that can be used to help a person stop using drugs or alcohol. There isn’t medication for every drug, but there are aids for drugs like opiates and alcohol. The medication can help a person quit by suppressing withdrawal symptoms or rendering the drugs ineffective. People use these medications on a short-term or long-term basis, and they’re most helpful when supplemented with other treatment, 12 step or not.

No matter what you do to get sober, the important thing is that you change your lifestyle in a way that will support your desire to stay sober. Whether you choose a 12 step program or a non 12 step method, accepting help is essential. While it’s not impossible, few people are about to stay sober on willpower alone.


  1. Mike Tollefson says

    I find that the SMART Recovery Program is the best fit for me. I have built a strong recovery and a balanced and meaningful life using its tools and principles. I know that today I AM NOT POWERLESS that the only way "I" will get loaded is if "I" choose to take a drink or drug. While I do believe in God I don't believe that by doing the steps properly with a sponsor that it will invoke Devine intervention where God will restore me to sanity. I have a very strong recovery circle that includes SMART Meetings, Veteran support groups and one NA meeting a week. I believe that active addiction is a horrible place to be and support any and all ways to move beyond addiction and create that meaningful life that for me is the real goal of recovery abstaining from substances is simply not enough

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