Did you know that 21 million Americans struggle with addiction? Though the disease can feel isolating, don’t think you’re alone.
Many people suffer silently to prevent friends and family from learning the truth. But this mentality can stop you from getting better.
Seek help, and reach out to others on the road to sobriety who understand your daily struggles. Read on to learn about the seven benefits of attending NA meetings.
1. Safe Space
Like AA meetings, they hold most NA meetings in churches, community centers, and office buildings. All of these spaces offer comfort and safety.
For those who use drugs, this change of scenery can feel like a win all on its own. Many addicts find themselves in sketchy places to get drugs or hang with other users.
Even your home may feel like it lost its safety because of the people who drop by or other reasons. Driving around high puts you and others at serious risk.
You might decide it’s time to strive for sobriety while using. So for the duration of the meeting, you will find yourself in safety if nothing else, for today.
We live in a society that values independence. This can make asking for help and seeking support difficult.
But humans need one another. Even when we think that we do everything alone, we can usually find a trail of support if we really look.
Sometimes it’s as simple as somebody holding a door when we’re carrying something that helps us through the day.
At NA, AA, and Al-Anon meetings, people build a network of support. This does everything from keeping you sober to making that particular day a little easier.
3. Positive Mindset
While you do not want to act like a sheep and simply follow the crowd, groupthink does work. It leads you toward sobriety at meetings.
The majority of people attending want to stay sober. At meetings, you will get to know a number of people with stretches of sobriety that you hope to reach.
Hearing success stories and talking with people who truly enjoy sobriety can help you stay in that mindset. They can help you change your thinking in ways that support sobriety.
Getting into a positive mindset about recovery will help your life in a number of ways. This stretches beyond recovery.
The world can feel cruel to somebody addicted to drugs. People call addiction a disease but still may treat you like a pariah.
Somebody who does not struggle with addiction cannot wrap their head around the idea of feeling like they need something to survive. They don’t know the body aches and sickness of withdrawal or the mental hijacking that draws every thought to one agenda.
They can offer you compassion but struggle to actually empathize with your pain. This can lead to you feeling misunderstood and thinking there is something wrong with you alone.
Attending NA introduces you to others who face similar struggles of drug and alcohol abuse. You can receive empathy during your shares and give it back during theirs.
Feeling understood can bring a sense of wholeness as it fills major voids. This alone makes recovery feel possible.
5. It Works
Addiction research reveals that 55% of addicts attending four meetings per week on average achieve over five years of sobriety. This means that the 12-step program works for many people.
Do not let yourself slip into the mindset that it won’t work for you. Give it a try, and believe in yourself.
The more meetings you attend, the less time you give yourself to use drugs. Start there and see where it takes you.
This does not mean that you should treat NA as a miracle cure. You may still require treatment for success in sobriety.
Many people require detox and rehab before beginning the program. Meetings should supplement mental health treatment rather than replace it.
6. Making Amends
Attending meetings takes effort. It also takes courage to show your face, admit your struggles, and then face everybody again at the next meeting.
Showing up, again and again, shows that you want to get sober and will do what it takes to make it happen. This effort can take you a long way when it’s time to make amends with the people who you’ve hurt and pushed away.
People can get tired of empty apologies that keep coming from loved ones struggling with addiction. But when they see it backed up by more than words, it feels real.
Some relationships may feel more broken than others. Hearing stories of others who mended things with their loved ones can offer you hope, inspiration, and good ideas on how to go about it.
When you do make amends, you can invite loved ones to open meetings so they can better understand your efforts and become a part of your recovery. You might also suggest Al-Anon support to them.
Drug abuse drains self-esteem straight out of a person. Your life begins to crumble, and you may lose relationships, income, your home, and more.
Society treats you as lesser, and in your own head, you feel not good enough to stop the cycle. Losing self-esteem can make it feel pointless to even try.
Fortunately, attending meetings can help you to start feeling good about yourself again. It feels good to really try for something.
At the meetings, you will meet others with similar struggles. Suddenly you will not feel like the only person who could possibly mess up this badly.
You will see yourself in others who pulled themselves out of similar depths. Your admiration for them will build a love for yourself.
As you put in the effort, others will truly admire you as well. Your stories will inspire others, and you will feel good about yourself.
Make NA Meetings a Priority
Drug addiction can feel extremely overwhelming. You may not know where to begin.
Start by making NA meetings a top priority. Actively take the importance away from your drug of choice and place it on your sobriety.
Not sure where to go? Search for a meeting by location to start your sober journey.