The Science Behind A.A.
Clinical psychologist Joseph Nowinski recently completed a new book, If You Work It, It Works, which makes a case for 12 step programs like Alcoholics Anonymous, claiming they are effective at bringing about recovery for alcoholics and addicts who “work the program”, which is essentially participating in 12 step meetings, working with a sponsor and practicing the steps.
The book is the product of the most recent scientific research and Nowinski’s work on the eight year multi-site study known as Project Match.
Nowinski, is quoted in an article published by the Litchfield County Times on December 11, 2014 as saying “even spirituality, which does not require a belief in God, has been studied and shown to be a component of recovery”. Nowinski describes people who work 12 step programs as “becoming more spiritual…they start believing in things like altruism and honesty”.
Critics of A.A.’s success rate point to the high percentage of people who drop out and stop participating in A.A. They count the dropouts as failures. Nowinski reminds the critics that “we don’t know what they do or how their drinking turned out. The most pressing issue with any treatment protocol is that fifty percent of the people drop out after three or four months”.
Information for this post was made possible from an article written by Ed Stannard, @EdStannard on Twitter, and published by The Litchfield County Times on December 11, 2014. You can read the complete article about the book at the Litchfield County Times.
If You Work It, It Works is available for preorder from amazon.com, and will be published by Hazelden in February 2015.