Secular Organization for Sobriety (SOS), referred to as Save Our Selves, is a non-profit network of self-governing addiction healing groups. The program stresses the need to position the greatest concern on sobriety and uses shared assistance to help members in attaining this goal. The Suggested Guidelines for Sobriety stress reasonable decision-making and are not spiritual or spiritual in nature. SOS represents an alternative to the spiritually based addiction healing programs such as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA). SOS members might take part in AA meetings, however, do not view spirituality or surrender to a Higher Power as being essential to maintain abstinence.
The Sobriety Priority
The number one goal of every group in Secular Organizations for Sobriety: to remain sober no matter what. That indicates no drugs or alcohol for any factor. How do you achieve this, according to SOS?
– Finding out ways to be honest
– Being direct in your communication
– Choosing abstinence even when it’s tough
– Maintaining the personal privacy of others in the group
– Seeking help from others when you need it, offering help to others when they ask
The search for the “good life,” a life without drinking, is the focus no matter what problems or temptations arise.
The Benefit of Support Groups
According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, research studies highlight that the peer support that exists in support systems “help in healing and minimizes health care expenses.” These groups create a sense of community, instilling hope, determination, and the pursuit of health, in a manner that increases an individual’s chances of starting and supporting individual development.
Support systems provide an individual the chance to discover and engage with good example, other people who have actually prospered within their healing, which can in turn increase an individual’s possibilities of successfully establishing hope, coping skills, and a higher capacity to change.
A typical problem within the life of an addicted person is that they often push away those who appreciate them and consider their behavior bothersome, rather than surrounding themselves with individuals who participate in the same harmful behavior as themselves. Consequently, when an individual ends up being sober, they must stay far away from these unfavorable relationships, and start establishing more favorable ones. A support system provides an individual with an outstanding chance for social participation, giving them the opportunity to start establishing more favorable and healthy relationships.
James Christopher’s alcohol addiction started when he was a teen. He had initially looked for help in Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), however was uncomfortable with the focus on God and religious beliefs so he began looking for direction in the writings of nonreligious humanists. Christopher blogged about his aggravations with AA and his own developing program for healing. In 1985, Free Inquiry released a post “Sobriety Without Superstition” composed by Christopher. He received numerous letters in response and chose to arrange nonreligious, self-help, alcohol addiction healing group meetings. The very first meeting was held November 1986 in North Hollywood, California. Meetings continue to this day at the Center for Inquiry in Los Angeles and in other areas. Christopher has continued being sober since 1978.
SOS acknowledges genetic and environmental factors contributing to addiction, however, allows each member to choose whether alcohol addiction is an illness. SOS holds the view that alcoholics can recover (addicting behavior can be apprehended), but eventually is not treated; relapse is always possible. SOS does not back sponsor relationships. The SOS program is based upon the Suggested Guidelines for Sobriety, that highlight the “sobriety priority.” In order to change, members should make abstinence their number one concern; not drinking in spite of changing conditions in their lives. SOS recommends members follow a daily, three part Cycle of Sobriety: recommendation of their dependency, approval of their dependencies and prioritization of keeping sobriety. Members are motivated to establish ways or aphorisms that reinforce their willpower to keep sobriety called “daily do’s.”
The Meeting Experience
Secular Organizations for Sobriety meetings offer an online forum to motivate those who struggle with addiction by encouraging hope, responsibility, a means of expression, perseverance, and individualism. Once again, S.O.S. does not just deal with those that experience a drug or alcohol addiction, it also invites those that struggle with compulsive eating.
As the meeting opens, the group’s facilitator takes a minute to present both themselves and the group that is holding the meeting, making sure that they repeat the concepts and function that rests behind the meeting. They then make their way through any basic statements, and make special note if there are any sobriety anniversaries to celebrate. Next, they allow another person to share a reading with the group, particularly the following Guidelines for sobriety:
” To break the cycle of rejection and accomplish sobriety, initially we acknowledge that we are alcoholics or addicts. We declare this reality day-to-day and accept without reservation– one day at a time– that as clean and sober people we can not and do not consume or use, no matter what. Considering that drinking or using is not an alternative for us, we take whatever steps are needed to continue our Sobriety Priority lifelong. A lifestyle– “the good life”– can be accomplished. Nevertheless, life is filled with uncertainties. For that reason, we do not drink or use, despite feelings, situations, or conflicts.”
Now that people have had an opportunity to ponder on these words and declare their desire and purpose, they will now have an opportunity to present themselves to the group. Following this, they have the chance to share their ideas and experiences with the group. In closing, they pass around a basket in case anybody wishes to add to the cause, and take a minute to clap and motivate each other.
If you’re interested in finding a meeting, S.O.S. acknowledges that some people might not have access to a meeting, or for numerous factors, might not have the ability to participate in. For this reason, they have established online meetings that supply you with interactive online forums through social networking websites and other methods. Some individuals might find these meetings more conducive to their schedule, and experience other advantages that exist due to their versatility as well as higher confidential nature. Finally, S.O.S. motivates individuals who witness a need for a support group to take initiative and establish their own S.O.S. meetings.
An initial study of SOS members was carried out in 1996. The study results revealed SOS brought in members with secular mindsets; 70% had no existing spiritual association and 70% were self-described atheists or agnostics, while another 22% explained themselves as spiritual however non-churchgoers. SOS members were primarily white (99%) employed (almost half were employed full-time) males (1/4 of the participants were female) over the age of 40. Abstinence was the reported objective of 86% of SOS members; 70% of participants reported that they were presently abstinent (for approximately 6.3 years), another 16% were “primarily abstinent.” Most of SOS members prepared long-term association with SOS. Almost every member surveyed had been exposed to AA, the typical rate of AA participation among SOS members in the previous month was 4.5 meetings. A 2007 study of addiction healing groups discovered that piousness associated adversely with involvement in SOS.
Good Reasons to Choose the Secular Organization for Recovery
There is not yet one healing alternative that matches everybody. This suggests that each person will have to find the healing choice that works best for them. There are lots of people who feel that groups like Alcoholics Anonymous are the best alternative for them, however, there are lots of other people who battle with this approach. SOS can be an excellent alternative due to the fact that:
– Those individuals who do not hold any spiritual or spiritual beliefs can be postponed by talk of a higher power in AA. To such people the 12 Step program can seem like a little bit of a spiritual cult, and they will withstand it.
– Many individuals will currently attempt the 12 Step program and fail to achieve lasting sobriety. They might feel that it is better to attempt a different technique this time.
– SOS is more open to scientific discoveries than groups like AA. If better methods become available for coping with addiction, then these can be adjusted.
– SOS is not an option. It is completely appropriate that individuals combine SOS meetings with many other healing programs.
– Members of SOS acknowledge that there are different paths in recovery. This suggests that they are less focused on recommending their path for other individuals.
Where does Spirituality Fit into Your Recovery?
For some individuals, an expedition of spirituality throughout their healing is among the many flexibilities they take pleasure in thanks to their newly found sobriety. For some, it is totally different from their interest in preventing alcohol and drugs, but for others, it plays no part at all. No matter what your level of interest is in including spirituality in your healing, you can find a support system that remains in line with your point of view. Call now so we can help you find options available that fit your needs.