About SMART Recovery

SMART Recovery provides tools to increase self-reliance, self-resilience, and self-empowerment. This
includes teaching proven strategies to manage thoughts, feelings, and behaviors without shame or
blame. You are in charge of your own recovery. Participants develop the power to change and lead
fulfilling and balanced lives through our sensible 4-Point Program®:
1. Building and Maintaining Motivation
2. Coping with Urges
3. Managing Thoughts, Feelings, and Behaviors
4. Leading a Balanced Life
SMART’s 4-Point Program offers tools and techniques for taking a careful look at negative behaviors and
learning how to stop them. Tools include worksheets, hands-on activities, and methods grounded in
cognitive and motivational psychology.
Addiction psychologists developed SMART Recovery using principles, practices, and tools from cognitive
and motivational psychology with proven effectiveness in treating addictive and related problematic
behavior. Facilitators are trained to lead meetings using motivational interviewing—a discipline that
encourages participants to choose for themselves measures that will advance their recovery, rather than
telling people what they must do. SMART recognizes the value of medication-assisted treatment (MAT)
to help people recover from addiction, especially opioid use disorder. Individuals undergoing MAT are
welcome at SMART meetings. All participants reap the benefit of evidence-based approaches to
The SMART Recovery program does not involve religion or spirituality. We encourage individuals to find
the power within themselves to make necessary life changes. This approach fits many individuals who
may not have found success in other programs. While SMART is not spiritually based, we support the
choice of individuals who include spirituality or religion in their recovery journey.
SMART Recovery discourages the use of labels like “addict,” “alcoholic,” and “clean.” SMART regards
addiction as a behavioral problem that can be resolved; this condition does not define who you are. As is
often said at meetings, “Labels belong on jars, not people.” SMART helps move you toward a balanced,
productive, and satisfying life.
SMART is a widely recognized pathway for recovery support and behavioral change by leading
government and medical institutions worldwide, including in the U.S., the National Institute on Drug
Abuse, National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, Substance Abuse and Mental Health
Services Administration and Federal Bureau of Prisons; in the UK, the National Institute for Health and
Care Excellence and Public Health England; and the Australian Government Department of Health.