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The 5 Stages of Recovery

Last Updated on December 13, 2023

taylor wilson active recovery companions
Taylor Wilson
Certified Recovery Specialist
depressed woman leaning on the wall during her 5 stages of recovery

The path of recovery is full of challenges and uncertainties. It's a process that requires not only strength and determination but also a clear understanding of the recovery process and realistic expectations about the road ahead. In this article, we'll cover the 5 stages of recovery — from the initial acknowledgment of addiction to the ongoing commitment to maintaining sobriety.

As a dedicated provider of sober companions and sober coaches, Active Recovery is available and ready to help. Our sober monitoring service is an excellent program designed to keep you on the path of sustainable recovery. Call us today for support!

Stage One - Pre-Contemplation

People struggling with substance abuse or alcohol addiction often have difficulty recognizing their addiction.

The pre-contemplation stage marks the initial stage in the five stages of the recovery process, signifying the point at which you begin to acknowledge the possibility of a problem related to substance use.

At this stage, acknowledgment of drug or alcohol addiction is often minimal. It's common in this phase to justify your substance use as harmless or under control; however, you may begin to question your usage patterns, wondering about the extent and its effect on your life.

It's common to rationalize using drugs or alcohol to relax after a demanding day, or believing that prescription drugs are safe despite exceeding recommended dosages —simply because it's medically prescribed.

Your family members may start noticing changes and express concerns, but you may not be ready to address them. Despite initial resistance or denial, it's imperative to acknowledge the existence of your problem. This acknowledgment will lay the groundwork for advancing to more proactive stages of recovery.

Seeking outside help or connecting with a great local recovery community like Active Recovery can help tremendously. Unlike others, the approach of our addiction recovery consultants is not a confrontation and comes from a place of compassion and empathy.

Our coaches specialize in creating a non-threatening environment, where you can slowly and comfortably face the realities of your substance use without feeling overwhelmed.

Stage Two - Contemplation

At the second stage, also known as the contemplation stage, what was once seen as an 'impossible task'—recovery—starts to appear attainable. It's a moment when the effects of addiction become increasingly evident to you, and the idea of seeking substance abuse treatment begins to form and take hold.

You start to acknowledge that your usage might be more problematic than you initially thought, and you're likely to spend time weighing the pros and cons of continuing your current lifestyle versus making a change.

Contemplation is a phase marked by internal debates and an increasing openness to set initial recovery goals. As you contemplate change, the exploration of treatment options becomes more relevant.

Active Recovery's professionals are here to provide support and information by helping you transition from contemplation to the next stage of your recovery.

Remember, the contemplation stage is about exploration and understanding, and it's okay to feel uncertain or apprehensive. Each small step is a significant stride towards early recovery.

At Active Recovery, every recovery coach assists in the decision-making process by providing detailed insight into each treatment option. This ensures you can make an informed choice that aligns with your recovery objectives.

Stage Three - Preparation

The preparation stage is a proactive phase in the recovery process where you start taking actual steps toward addiction treatment.

This phase involves seeking out resources and support systems such as drug or alcohol support groups or family therapy to build a strong foundation for overcoming addiction.

At this stage, you become more aware of the challenges ahead. This includes potential withdrawal symptoms and the importance of addressing mental health in conjunction with substance abuse issues.

It's a time for planning and arranging the necessary support, both medically and emotionally.

Active Recovery assists in this important stage by helping you identify and enroll in suitable programs that address your specific needs. We emphasize the importance of extended care by integrating family therapy and support groups into your recovery plan.

Stage Four - Action

The fourth stage, also referred to as the action stage, is where your commitment to recovery transforms into tangible steps. It's a dynamic phase where attending addiction meetings becomes a regular part of your routine.

Stage 4 is characterized by a deepened engagement in recovery activities.

In this stage, you will actively participate in professional treatment programs by applying the strategies and skills you've learned to overcome addiction.

Whether it's through consistent attendance at support groups, rigorous compliance to treatment protocols, or proactive involvement in therapy sessions, the action stage is where you start to see significant changes in your life.

Active Recovery supports you in this life-changing phase to ensure that the action you take is informed and well-structured.

Stage Five - Maintenance

Often considered the final stage toward successful recovery, the maintenance stage is where you consolidate and sustain the progress you've made.

The focus shifts to strategies that prevent relapse, making sure that the positive changes you've achieved become a permanent part of your life.

During the maintenance stage, Active Recovery will continue to offer support and guidance to help you reinforce the coping mechanisms and healthy habits developed in earlier stages.

Stage 5 is a continuous process of self-awareness and growth. Vigilance and commitment are fundamental in preventing relapse and maintaining the gains of your hard work.

How Can Active Recovery Help with Addiction?

Our experienced team will guide you through each stage of recovery, from acknowledging the problem in the Pre-Contemplation stage to maintaining your achievements in the Maintenance stage.

We offer a range of services including one-on-one counseling, group therapy sessions, family therapy, and mental health companions, all designed to address addiction.

Our programs focus on complete healing of both mental and physical health.

With Active Recovery, you have a partner dedicated to helping you build a sustainable and fulfilling life free from addiction. If you or a loved one are suffering from addiction, contact us today for support.

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taylor wilson active recovery companions

Taylor Wilson

Owner & Certified Recovery Specialist

Taylor Wilson is an experienced author, owner of Active Recovery Companions, and a Certified Recovery Specialist. Since 2015, Taylor has provided personalized recovery coaching to diverse clients, from high-profile individuals to young adults seeking assistance in various areas of life. With a background in Sociology and Psychology, along with certifications in CPR, CRS-1, PADI Scuba Diving, MITT, and NASM-CPT, Taylor offers holistic support and guidance. Their own journey of sobriety since 2012 adds a personal touch to their work. Through their writing and compassionate coaching, Taylor empowers individuals, fostering personal growth and helping them lead fulfilling lives in recovery.

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