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Why you need Support and Sponsors on your Journey

None of us will ever get through this thing called life without support. I know that’s a tough thing for some people because you love to support others but when it comes to yourself you don’t ask for support. I know it’s a tough thing for some people because they feel like they’re strong enough or smart enough or should be able to get through everything in life. But not one person in the history of mankind has ever been able to start this thing called life and end this thing called life without support, let alone during times of casualties, during times of pain, during times of loss. I mean, how powerful do you think you are to be able to handle circumstances and situations in life without the help of other people? You know, when we talk about people being powerless and you’re like, “No man, I don’t. I don’t believe in that,” what we’re actually saying is look at an infant.

Needing Support for Something New

An infant when they’re zero to like two years old, you know kind of like 18 to 24 months old, they’re powerless. You can’t get through life without support. So anytime you start something new for the first 18 months to two years of it, just like a baby you’re powerless with all this stuff. You don’t know what you’re doing, you don’t know how to do it. You need support to get through it. There’s no shame in that. Sometimes you just got to put your ego aside and put your pride aside and put your “I can do this by myself” aside. It’s okay to get support if you’re trying to transform, recover, heal, obtain sobriety, maintain sobriety, have emotional sobriety. You got to need some support and this moment that we’re having right here is a moment of support. You tuned in, you realize that, but what about all the other 23 hours in a day, 6 other days a week? How are you going to go about that? So please don’t underestimate the power of support when it comes to this.

Find Someone who knows the Way

When you’re doing something new, the first time you might not really know how to do it. There’s a lot of people that say they started the program, they’re doing the steps on their own because they don’t want to do it with somebody else. I mean first of all, that’s better than nothing, I’ll tell you that. Because at least you get exposed to the information. But second of all, if you don’t know what you’re doing then you don’t know what you’re doing. Because there’s a profound quote that I love and I’ve been sharing it over and over again because I used to talk about it all the time and I forgot about it but here’s what it is. It says, 

“The eyes can’t see what the mind doesn’t know.”

I love that. The eyes can’t see what the mind doesn’t know so if you’re trying something for the first time or you’re new to it there is so much you don’t know. Therefore your eyes are not able to see what it is that you’re looking for. So the whole point of a sponsorship or a mentor or someone who knows the way, shows the way, goes the way, is to help you uncover the unseen and to make it seen, so you can see it. And then you can do something about it. If you want to see further in life stand on the shoulders of giants. A sponsor is not a perfect person – it’s a human being – they are flawed. A sponsor is not somebody that takes over every aspect of your life. If they do that they’re overstepping. The sponsor is just a human being that’s very committed to the recovery process themselves and they have understood that by working with other people it is a way that they can maintain the progress they’ve had while also helping somebody else out. And it’s somebody that can create a little bit of a road map, a little bit of structure, especially in your early stages. Now sponsorship is wonderful throughout recovery but those early first two stages, I think, are probably the most important part and need for strong sponsorship.

How to Find a Sponsor

The benefit of having a sponsor is tenfold. I mean, you get through something the way it’s intended to get through, you work through the different challenges that might come up, and you continue to grow in this thing called sobriety and recovery. And it’s really hard to do it without it. Now there’s different styles of sponsorship. Some people are more structured and strict in requirements and all that kind of stuff, and some people are a little more loose or a little bit more open-ended and they don’t really engage unless you engage and that kind of stuff. Whatever it is for your so called continuum, you know yourself better. If you work really well with someone a specific way then find someone a specific way. 

How do you find one, by the way? Obviously, number one would be like a straight referral. You see someone that’s doing well and you ask them some questions and say, “hey, do you have a sponsor?” They’re typically going to say yes because if they’re doing well there’s a likelihood that someone’s helping them. And then you say, “Is there any way I can get their number, or if you can connect me to somebody that you might know?” And because they’ve been going they have a better idea of who would be a good candidate for that person. Doesn’t always have to be same sex or anything like that but it’s recommended. Because in any type of inventory there is a lot of potential issues that arise that it’s just a little bit more comfortable talking to someone of the same gender. It’s not a requirement but it’s a best practice, if you will. And the other version is this. If you don’t know anybody and you go to the rooms for the first time, just go to about six meetings. The same meeting so six weeks, so it’s a little bit over a month. Go to the same meeting at the same time because typically they’re called regulars or usuals. Kind of like any bar, if you go at a certain time there’s certain people sitting in certain chairs. Rooms of recovery are the same way – the same people sit in the same chairs. 

So what happens is if you go to these meetings and you see the people in the same seats they become familiar. You’re like, “Okay I trust that person’s there, I trust that person’s there,” but then people typically share if it’s a sharing meeting and then you can just sit back and listen to what they’re saying and see if it resonates with you, if it vibes with you, if you’re comfortable with their approach or their outlook on life. And then here’s the part that’s scary for some people. You gotta walk up to them like you’re in junior high getting ready to ask somebody for a date. You walk up to them and say, “Hey, I’ve heard you share a few times. You’ve said some things that have really resonated with me. Do you have a few minutes or some time to sit down and have a further conversation?” Eventually through that process, or you just walk up and straight away say, “hey, would you like to sponsor me?” Everyone’s different with that. Some people are more reserved and some people need to slowly work into it but it’s a request, it’s a simple request. They will give you an answer yes or no, oftentimes yes. And if they say no, which can happen.  A sponsor might have like 30 sponsorees. He might have 10 sponsorees, and he’s just booked and he might say, “Hey unfortunately I can’t sponsor you but I have these sponsors that have been recovered for a while now and I work with them directly and you can be a part of our sponsorship family. They can sponsor you,” and in that case that sponsor would become like a grand sponsor right? It’s nice to have that kind of a support so no one leaves you hanging if you go ask for it.

Call Buckeye Recovery Today!

Are you in recovery but not making progress? Recovery is not only possible but attainable, and it all begins with reaching out for assistance. By addressing both addiction and mental health issues, individuals can break free from the cycle of despair and embark on a path to a healthier, more fulfilling life. Contact Buckeye Recovery Network today and initiate your journey to recovery and improved mental health. Our dedicated team of professionals is here to guide and support you every step of the way.

Today is going to be the best day of your life.

Kelsey Gearhart

Director of Business Development

Kelsey carries multiple years of experience working in the substance abuse and mental health treatment field. Her passion for this field comes from her personally knowing recovery from addiction.

Prior to Buckeye she held titles of Recovery Coach, Operations Director, and Admissions Director. Kelsey was brought on at Buckeye Recovery as the Director of Business Development. She has a passion for ensuring every individual gets the help that they need, and does so by developing relationships with other providers.

Kelsey also oversees our women’s sober living environments – The Chadwick House for Women. She is committed to creating a safe, nurturing, and conducive environment for all women that walk through the doors of Chadwick.