The 12 step recovery is important to many in the respect that it serves the function as a spiritual guide and support system in the absence of guides and support systems. 12 step meetings to some degree provide the function of trauma reprocessing (shares), re-socialisation (group meetings), mentorship (sponsors) cognitive behaviour change (repetition of meetings) that challenge a conscious self-awareness and provide a "safe" (anonymous) platform that is effectively free and readily available.
For the last 80 years, however the same spiritual programme (with some minor alterations) has been in effect throughout the world.
As a free programme, there are many positive behaviour changes, guidance and social principals in play that do have positive effects in recovery, the majority of individuals that directly enter 12 step meetings. People with severe substance use disorders or "rock bottom" substance use issues are most likely to adopt the 12 steps model as they simply have no option but to recover.
A survey conducted by AA in 2014 showed that:
Ergo the frequent success stories in AA tend to dovetail with some form of evidence-based counselling engagement such as provided by our care centre or in personal growth, coaching and development programmes that are based on core psychology principals. Evidence suggests that for those people, AA attendance can be a source of long term recovery in that AA/NA is free to use, easy to access with a global support system but should be used in conjunction with evidence-based treatment as the primary source of treatment.
Bottom line is we do recover, all in our own ways and that is something we support at Recovery Direct. If you have tried 12 steps and you still can't quiet the noise in your head, perhaps you ought to start looking at evidence-based treatment options.