An AA alternative - Stop drinking or using drugs forever!
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NA and AA Alternatives, non 12 step, alternatives to AA and NA, drug & alcohol self help workbook - Stop drinking or using drugs today!
"I believe the possibilities are limitless...
I will outdistance my wildest dreams,
looking back one day and realizing
that the hardest times in my life were the most important."

Contrary to what other programs may have led you to believe, you are more than a "client" to be treated or labeled with a disease. You have choices, motivation and free will. Your future depends, not on the theories and opinions of counselors and doctors, but on that inner desire you have to be more than you are now.


This site was developed as an AA or NA alternative.

It is for those who struggle with alcohol addiction or drug addiction and just can't find the meaning and answers they seek in AA, NA or current treatment programs.

It is to empower the friends and families of those with a drug addiction or alcohol addiction, and help them understand what they can do to help.

It views drug and alcohol addiction as a choice, not a disease.

Through the "Forgotten Five Steps" workbook, it presents motivational and practical tools for "recovery" that pull upon your own strengths.

This approach will not require years of expensive therapy, endless meetings and defining yourself as an alcoholic or addict.

...I must emphasize that I believe in the value of each person, and like myself, each must come to terms with who they are, what they desire, and their own way of finding it.

AA and treatment can be beneficial in changing one's life from alcohol addiction or drugs. However, I have met many alcohol or drug users who just couldn't make it work. They believed in a different philosophy or life course. They wanted more than what was offered. I do not judge others for their beliefs and passions for we all dance to a different tune.

You are not a failure because you did not succeed in previous attempts at "sobriety". Look deeper. Find your passion. Raise your standards and begin to believe again...... HOPE!

If you have tried to quit alcohol or drugs, and just can't find that peace and happiness through traditional programs, read on. Open your mind and heart to what is possible and know that you are not alone. There are others who struggled also, but found a way to live again.

My purpose here is to share my views, opinions and what I have learned in the process, with the hope that it will encourage others to do the same. The question I often ask myself is "What statement do I want to give to the world?" Well, here are some, of many, that myself and others have deemed important enough to share.......

Timothy Welch, PCC, NCC, MAC

"The Forgotten Five Steps" Workbook Program!

Drug & alcohol addiction recovery alternatives - An AA alternative.  Alternatives to AA, Non 12 step, drug alcohol self help
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An AA alternative - Stop drinking or using drugs forever!

Non 12 step workbook, Alcohol Addiction Self Help, Drug Recovery Self Help, Drug & Alcohol Addiction Recovery Workbook
Drug addiction and alcohol addiction is not a disease, but a choice. You do not have to be a passive bystander to an imaginary disease of drug addiction or alcohol addiction; give up your will; be labeled as an alcoholic or "in recovery"; or attend meetings and treatment for the rest of your life!

Those who struggle with alcohol addiction or drug addiction are finding that often the mainstream thinking isn’t helping them. Three or four alcohol or drug rehabs later, many counseling sessions attended, and hundreds or even thousands of dollars spent only to find out that relapse is a part of treatment and the drug or alcohol addiction "disease" is with you forever! What? Then why go? If something does not produce acceptable results, why continue in it?

Because we have been led to believe that drug addiction or alcohol addiction is a disease. We have been told that the only way to "recover" is to attend treatment and endless AA, NA meetings for the rest of our lives.

The truth is that most people who have had problems with alcohol addiction or drug addiction in the past quit on their own.

Even those currently struggling with drug addiction or alcohol addiction will tell you that they have often refrained from drug or alcohol use for a period of time.

There is no mysterious disease here, it is a matter of choice.

You are in complete control right now! No one is stopping you from cracking that beer, or sniffing that powder.

If you want to use alcohol or drugs, you will. Addicts always find a way.

So why is the alternative to using (not using) drugs or alcohol so difficult to comprehend? We can choose to pick up a beer whenever we fancy. But if we want to put that beer down, all of a sudden there are diseases, character defects, meetings, counseling treatment sessions, etc., to contend with!

Many who have had an alcohol addiction or drug addiction problem, have quit on their own and without all the drama and struggle!

There are vast amounts of information out there on the whole "recovery" process from drug addiction and alcohol addiction. With this vast information, I believe, we often lose sight of what matters most.

We may lose site of the individual differences and dignity of all who struggle with drug addiction or alcohol addiction to receive the kind of help that will be most beneficial for them to succeed in life. Diversity enhances life experiences and we should not limit ones options for success in "recovery" by presenting only one view of addiction. We are all free to choose and have every capability and tool necessary to live the life we dream without alcohol or drugs.
Read more from The Forgotten Five Steps

Drug addiction and alcohol addiction is a painful business. Because of the pain and struggle involved we may search endlessly for the one cause or cure to end the madness. We become afraid, and through this fear cling to any shred of evidence we can find to lift us from our state.

Is there one way to succeed in "recovery"? Who is right? Who is wrong?

When it is all said and done, it does not matter which path you take to end alcohol addiction or drug addiction. It's your choice, your life. Find a way.

For whatever reason, you gave alcohol or drugs power and control. They served a purpose for you. This purpose allowed you the ability to control your fear and feelings of helplessness.

Relearning a healthy coping strategy may take time, and you will make mistakes. Don’t go to hard on yourself. Learn from your mistakes. You are more than your drug or alcohol addiction!

Those that struggle with drug addiction or alcohol addiction will continue to use until they are convinced that they can successfully live life without the use of alcohol or drugs.

Addiction as a choice does not avoid responsibility. Rather it acknowledges mistakes and enables ownership of positive change.

"The Forgotten Five Steps" Workbook/Audio Program!

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An empowering & practical approach to addiction.

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It is a choice-based alternative to AA, NA or treatment that was written from successes of others who have "recovered" from addiction forever.

A Self-help workbook that does not require years of expensive therapy, endless meetings and defining yourself as an alcoholic or addict. It is motivational and pulls upon your own strengths.

You do NOT have a disease, and you are more than your past mistakes. It will help explain how your alcohol or drug use has isolated you from yourself and the life you desire.

There is only one reason why you have not changed and quit your drug addiction or alcohol addiction up to this point. Fear!

You have not been convinced you can successfully handle life without alcohol or drugs! You believe your feelings of loneliness, sadness, or whatever emotion you experience would be too much and too scary to handle without alcohol or drugs. You would be exposed. Your façade would be stripped. You would have no defenses left to buffer your heart from getting hurt by others...

So why can't people quit drug addiction or alcohol addiction when everything they say indicates they want to? Simply, they feel they cannot live life without it.

They have made the wrong choices for so long and depended on their drug addiction or alcohol addiction as a crutch. To stop drinking or using drugs would strip them of the only constant they know:

The ability to control their fear and helplessness with alcohol or drugs is the way they perceive as most effective for their particular situation.

You have used alcohol or drugs so long to buffer you from these stressors and emotions that you wonder if you can still face them alone. You doubt yourself and your abilities. How would you handle yourself? Would you be overwhelmed with unwanted emotions? Could I live with the reality that I created this mess? How would I resolve all this? It is safer to hide in a bottle or pipe than face the unknown.

"Someone struggling with drug addiction or alcohol addiction will continue to use until he or she is convinced that they can successfully live life without the use of alcohol or drugs. This can come at any time. There is no “bottom”. It is relative. Drug addiction and alcohol addiction has more to do with why people think they can’t quit, than why people continue to drink or use drugs. In other words, I am not going to quit until I think I can."
Excerpt from The Forgotten Five Steps

There are many who continue to struggle with current drug addiction or alcohol addiction treatment, AA or NA. These people may have been told that there is only one way to recover. That if they do not subscribe to the current thinking of addiction being a disease, then they are in denial, or will never recover.

They do not want to forever be called an "addict" or attend meetings for the rest of their lives. They do not want to continuously talk of their past mistakes, but move on. They feel their drinking or drug use does not make them powerless, but challenge themselves to a higher understanding of why they use.

There is hope and there are alternatives to recovery. There is no disease and you can recover forever.

My goal is to keep it real. I will only talk from experience. I've seen what works. Each human has potential, and if the desire is present and the right information available, the life you want is yours.

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Why Rock The Boat?

Some have asked why I feel it important to put a website out in direct opposition to what is currently believed in the drug and alcohol addiction treatment field. Some feel if people don't believe addiction is a disease they won't get help. Why not just go with the status quo? Isn’t the system we currently have sufficient enough to deal with the problems of drug and alcohol addiction?

I do not agree. Currently, retention rates of AA have been shown to be around 5%-10%. In substance abuse treatment many counselors will give you about a 10% to 30% success rate for drug or alcohol addiction recovery. Some would argue that the reason for these poor results is due to the disease itself: that the disease is difficult to overcome, there is denial, or the person has not hit bottom yet to be motivated enough to change.

They would argue for more in depth treatment, more consequences, and tighter controls. Yet, Project MATCH showed that treatment obtained the greatest results when it was brief, motivational, and individualized.

In fact brief interventions get as good or better results than the current treatment practices.

Finally, of those people who succeed in AA or treatment, it has been shown that the majority were already motivated to change. In other words, motivation of the alcohol or drug user to stop is more important than the actual programs or counseling techniques.

I have been asked if I thought that taking away the disease of drug or alcohol addiction would only encourage people to drink or use drugs. That the disease concept is needed to let people know they cannot keep using drugs or alcohol or face death.

This is a fear tactic and it does not work. If it did, our current system would not lose or exclude the majority of those seeking drug or alcohol addiction help.

Do people need to fear to remain sober? Some would argue, “yes”. Talk to a current outpatient program and they will tell you the majority of their clients remain sober for six months to a year. Most of these clients are court ordered to attend treatment and would rather attend therapy than sit in jail. But what about long term change? Recidivism is high, and relapse is accepted. What does this say about effectiveness of treatment?

Current treatment is not working. The majority of those who quit, quit on their own.
They did not give up their will to a disease, but took personal responsibility for their behavior. But, what about those who are finding it difficult to stop drinking or using drugs?

I do not believe that because some cannot or will not stop that it must be a disease. The purpose of the disease concept is to justify behavior we cannot understand. I would venture that most professionals in the field would agree.

Why do I say this? Because, moral inventories, amends, character defects, and different clinical therapies would be silly if addiction was purely a disease. Making amends or exploring childhood resentments would do little to eliminate something like cancer. What would be more effective is to teach the person the power of choice and empowerment in choosing coping responses to lead a more fulfilled life.

So, my goal is to offer an alternative view of drug and alcohol addiction. I would like to replace the fear of disease with the empowerment of choice. If someone chooses to continue using alcohol or drugs, it will not be because they are diseased, but because they have not been convinced they can successfully live life without alcohol or drugs.

"The Forgotten Five Steps" Workbook Program!

Drug & alcohol addiction recovery alternatives - An AA alternative.  Alternatives to AA, Non 12 step, drug alcohol self help
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The Substance Abuse Option
Webster defines option as: “The act of choosing: a choice. It is the power, right or liberty of choosing.” It is free and always available.

The options one chooses in life depend not so much on the actual presenting situation, but on the perceived value a particular option will have on resolving this presenting situation.

When one chooses the option to repeatedly use alcohol or drugs we call this substance abuse or addiction.

This option for substance abuse represents an attempt by the person to resolve a stressful, helpless, or fearful situation. It is an attempt to reassert their control or will to a perceived uncontrollable situation.

The situation is perceived as uncontrollable because it presents the person with a scenario of emotions that they believe cannot be handled without the use of alcohol or drugs.

Substance abuse helps resolve these emotional issues by doing two things:

1) It allows the addict to regain a sense of control of these emotions.

2) It gives the addict the illusion of a temporary fix or resolution to these negative emotional experiences.

The addict perceives the value of substance abuse as superior to the experience of their current emotional state of helplessness or fear.

The reality is that this attempt to control the emotional experience further isolates the addict from successful resolution of the presenting problem or experience.

Through time the repeated option to drink or use drugs becomes so familiar that deviation from it adds to the feelings of anxiety, helplessness and fear.

Predictability and safety in an addict’s alcohol or drug use is the key.

No matter what the emotional state, the addict can routinely reassert their will and control through the use of alcohol or drugs, even while acknowledging the destructive influence of their use.

The value of substance abuse is perceived as superior to their current emotional state of helplessness and fear.

So the option for substance abuse can present a realistic solution to a current emotional conflict, but that does not imply the choice to “not use” is unavailable.

Just as the addict has used his power, right or liberty to drink or use drugs, so he can also use his power, right and liberty to change.

The act of choosing has not vanished. The person maintains his power, right and liberty to choose whatever option makes sense to him and is most useful. In reality the addict asserts this freedom every time he decides to use.

To remove an option, as in maintaining addiction as a disease, is to remove freedom, power, right and liberty. It is to feed into the helplessness already being experienced by the addict who compensates for this through substance abuse.

Option is at the root of substance abuse and addiction, for in an option we are allowed to use freedom, power, right or liberty to resolve conflict anyway we want to. Even if this option destroys our lives through substance abuse or addiction.

If we combat this freedom to choose substance abuse or addiction, with an elimination of options (making it a disease that is responsible) we cut off the very opportunity we have to acknowledge where we need to change. We cut off our ability to see where our substance abuse or addiction began: In the freedom, power, right and liberty to choose how we will respond to our internal emotional experiences.

Excerpt from The Forgotten Five Steps

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