Alcoholics Anonymous created a 12-step program that outlines principles and action needed to recover from alcoholism.

As a chronic disease, honestly working the steps should continue for a lifetime. To recover from addiction, Burning Tree Programs uses the steps as the foundation for clinical programming.

While focusing on the steps, Burning Tree Programs also provides clinical modalities to identify underlying psychological issues or problems that could be blocking someone from recovery.

“I really believe the 12 steps are the conduit to get connected to a power greater than ourselves,” said Kito Holtzman, Clinical Director at Renewal Lodge. “It’s pretty much what we do straight out of the Big Book and it’s not watered down.”

Each program at Burning Tree Programs takes a specialized approach to the 12 Steps.

Renewal Lodge and Mindfulness

Renewal Lodge’s program focuses on high accountability, life skills, clinical support and 12-step immersion. The program utilizes an integrated treatment approach combining evidenced-based mindfulness skills and 12 step modalities.

Mindfulness can help those recovering from addiction better know the mind.

“The mindfulness component really helps us get to know the mind, and we know we are not the mind,” Kito said. “The 12 steps fit perfectly into what we’re doing with the mindfulness component.”

Because the disease centers in the mind alcoholics and addicts get a delusion and they cannot separate fact from fiction.

“You can’t think yourself out of addiction and knowledge will not do it and you need to do some work.”

The mindfulness component helps Renewal Lodge clients get to know the mind and know they are not the mind.

“The 12 steps fit perfectly into what we’re doing with the mindfulness component.”

All Burning Tree Programs use the first 164 pages of the big book of Alcoholics Anonymous. With the mindfulness component, people who are hesitant about the steps can find a way in to get them to engage working the 12 steps.

“I believe it’s the work through the 12 steps shows people the freedom that is available. My higher power wants me to do something, not just say something.”

Burning Tree Ranch and Long Term Treatment

Burning Tree Ranch uses the 12 Steps as the foundation of their work.

Whereas Renewal Lodge is a 30 – 90 day program, Burning Tree Ranch is 8 – 14 months. The Ranch works with chronic relapsers, or people with substance abuse who have gone to treatment before.

Often clients who go to Burning Tree Ranch have gone to treatment several times before. Since the program is so long, the treatment center has the ability to separate true alcoholism from any other underlying mental disorder.

But again, the Big Book’s first 164 pages are the foundation and basis for what they do.

“It’s a foundation and an outline of how to live a sober self supporting life of excellence,” said Meghan Bohlman, Clinical Director At Burning Tree Ranch. “We use the 12 Steps the entire time our clients are with us in inpatient.”

Burning Tree West

Katy Childress, Burning Tree West’s clinical director echoes other programs’ sentiment about the steps.

Burning Tree West uses positive psychology in conjunction with the 12 Steps. Burning Tree West is an extended care and sober living facility in Tucson, Arizona.

“Everyday we have a community meeting that uses the big book,” Katy said. “We’re using it clinically, too”

Students and clients in the program are required to get a sponsor. They work the steps with a sponsor and use that in their clinical work as well. Often, steps 4 and 5 are difficult to go through for anyone in Alcoholics Anonymous.

“We will help our clients while they are going through the steps.”

The Fullbrook Center

Burning Tree Programs has a strategic partnership with The Fullbrook Center, which is in Fredericksburg, Texas.

The Fullbrook Center focuses on the 12 Steps and healing trauma at the same time. It is a women’s only facility.

Tara Womble, Executive Clinical Director at the Fullbrook Center, said the steps is the foundation of everything they do.

The 12 Steps are a great way to identify the behavior clients use to manage the feelings they are trying to manage while drinking or using drugs.

When the alcohol and drugs are gone, those feelings are still there and the same is true with their trauma.

“Without sobriety there is no option or opportunity to treat trauma or underlying issues,” she said. “Just like healing trauma, integration of feelings is how we heal and grow and I think the 12 steps are a wonderful tool to integrate in how we feel into a life of sobriety.”

About Burning Tree Programs

Burning Tree Programs runs family owned, ethical treatment centers, where you can receive treatment for substance use disorder and underlying mental health issues at the same time. We have been providing ethical, family owned care since 1999. If you or a loved one are struggling with alcoholism or addiction, please contact our admission staff.

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