We admitted we were powerless over alcohol - that our lives had become unmanageable.
Admitted to an illness which is chronic – and gets progressively worse over time.
Powerless: lack of ability to control use of the substance on a continual basis.
Unmanageable – negative consequences to our lives and the lives of our loved ones, as a direct result of our addiction.
Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
Came = arrived
Came to = woke up
Came to believe = over time we woke up our spirituality.
A higher Power of our own understanding and choice.
Restore us to sanity: by using the twelve steps we can take responsibility for our own lives.
Make a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
We made a conscious decision to ‘do the right thing’ and make right choices for our recovery.
God = Our understanding of a power greater than ourselves from who/where we can depend on Good Orderly Direction.
Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
A journey to discover the truth about ourselves.
We take an honest and open look at ourselves, behaviours, attitudes and beliefs in addiction.
The alcoholics’ anonymous big book indicates that this should be in written format and gives us an example of how to do so on pg 59.
Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
Admitted – owned up and accepted who we had become in addiction.
How are you comfortable admitting something to your Higher Power?
Why is it important share the exact nature of our wrongs with another person?
Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
In step five we become aware of our defects of character or as the big book states ‘flaws in our character’
Step six asks that now we are aware of them, we need to become entirely ready to let them go and change.
Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
Ask our higher power to help us let go of old habits, behaviours and attitudes that are preventing us from achieving peace of mind.
Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.
List of all the people we had hurt in our addiction
Over time we became willing to repair the damage we had done through our own actions in addiction.
Made direct amends to such people whenever possible, expect when to do so would injure them or others.
Made face to face amends to others affected by our addiction.
The exception to that is when the amends will only hurt the other person.
Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
Continued = daily inventory
We look at our own behaviours and attitudes throughout the day and watch for relapse warning signs.
Promptly admitted it: don’t leave it too long – it only builds up into something bigger.
Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God, as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.
Pray: Communicate in your own language
Meditate: Take quiet time out to reflect and chat with your higher power. Walk, nature, silence,
How do you meditate?
Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics and to practice these principals in all our affairs.
A spiritual awakening is a guarantee of the twelve steps.
Carry the message – helping others in recovery, set up the A.A. room, tidy up, share honestly,
Practice these principals in all our affairs – the forgotten part of step twelve.
My name is Ruth H and I have been on this journey of Recovery for the last decade. In my roles of sponsor and counsellor, there have been many visits to the steps for me and the women who seek a better way to live life on life’s terms. Within these connections, of giving guidance, offering and getting suggestions, and the therapeutic value of one addict helping the other, we begin with step one…..
“We admitted that we were powerless over our addiction, that our lives had become unmanageable”
What makes us addicts is the disease of addiction- not the drugs (any mind or mood altering substance, gambling, and alcohol), not our behaviour but our disease. We find a measure of comfort in realizing that a disease, not a moral failing has caused us to reach a rock bottom.
The first step is the beginning of the recovery process. The “we”, is so important as it offers addicts an invitation out of the isolation of active addiction and into the fellowship of Recovery. We are not alone, nor are any individual who seeks recovery. You need company on this road; this journey is
Recovery is a process, it takes time, it takes patience, it takes everything you got..
My name is John an Alcoholic living my life in recovery for the past 3 years.
The focus of the first three steps is on the spiritual principles of openmindness, acceptance and willingness.
The Fourth Step is a method for learning about ourselves, and it is as much about finding our character assets as it is about identifying the exact nature of our wrongs. This Step is an action step which requires personal input and a focus on the spiritual principles of Honesty, Humility and Courage.
I felt fear in approaching the Step and shame over each imperfection for which I would have to take responsibility. To apply myself to Step four I had to feel my fear, change my attitude and look at the Step as a means of making peace with my past. Humility, not humiliation is the long term goal of the fourth step inventory.
Humility, as a word and as an ideal, has a very bad time of it in our world. Not only is the idea misunderstood; the word itself is often intensely disliked. Many people