Throughout treatment and during recovery, you’ll likely be encouraged to incorporate 12 step meetings into your schedule. 12 step programs are a great way to keep motivated about sobriety and to recognize how far you’ve gone. But, 12 step meetings are also about developing and maintaining recovery relationships. It’s important to establish relationships with others in recovery so that you can have relationships which realize the importance of your recovery. In most 12 step settings, you’ll be encouraged to choose a sponsor. But, what is a sponsor? And, how do you go about choosing a person for 12 step sponsorship?

What is a 12 Step Sponsor?

A 12 step sponsor is an individual who has been in recovery long term and has completed all of the activities required of the 12 steps. People who choose to be sponsors are not required to do so. But, as service is one of the 12 steps, many choose to go about service in the form of sponsorship. It’s a great way to help others who may be in similar circumstances. The purpose of 12 step sponsorship is to share experiences about recovery to encourage strength, motivation, and hope.

Guidance of 12 Step Sponsorship

A sponsor isn’t someone who has the intent to look over your shoulder and watch your every move. But, they can be there when things go wrong. Recovery won’t always be easy. So, it’s good to have someone in your corner who may know what you’re going through. And, it’s great to have some guidance when you may otherwise not know what to do. Throughout the 12 steps, you’ll need to jump many hurdles. Some of which you may need some advice. And, when you hear it from someone who has maybe already made those mistakes, you might take it with a grain of salt. So, sponsors aren’t necessarily there to manage you but to guide your steps in recovery when you need them.

Support You Can Trust When You Need It

A “battle buddy” is what the Army refers to as a person who will have your back when you need backup. Addiction recovery is an ongoing battle, and you’ll likely need your own battle buddy. The chances are, you’ll likely relapse. Or, at least start the process of relapsing. And, if and when this happens, if you have a sponsor, you’ll have help. A sponsor is a judgment-free way to get the help you need if you were to ever need it. They’ve been there. So, they know what you’re going through and the help you need. Choosing a sponsor is choosing to have support during the darkest and best times of recovery.

So, How Do I Choose A 12 Step Sponsor?

Now that you know a little more about 12 step sponsorship and the purpose of having a sponsor, you’re likely wondering how to go about choosing a sponsor. Well, there are a few things to consider before making the choice and asking the individual to sponsor you which may include:

Gender: To stay away from boundary issues which may arise and to keep things on a more professional level, it’s best to choose a sponsor who is the same gender as you.

Admiration: Typically, you want to choose someone you may look up to. Choose someone who you think you’d like to be more like in terms of confidence, personality, authenticity, and recovery achievements.

Number of Sponsees: You’ll want to choose a sponsor who can provide you with the support you need. And, if your sponsor has other sponsees, she may not be able to provide you with the support you deserve. So, consider an individual who is confident they will be able to support you when you need them.

12 step sponsorship is a great way to open room in your life for an individual who may motivate you, inspire you, or simply be a shoulder for you to lean on. Along with 12 step sponsorship, it’s important to be surrounded by an environment in recovery which encourages your sobriety. Sober living environments are these settings in which you can truly focus on your recovery goals. To learn more about sober living homes, please give The Lily Pad of St. Augustine a call today at 561-758-1011.