Early recovery is an opportunity for you to start fresh in your clean and sober lifestyle. This entails a lot of work, however, and to accomplish this means you need time to be able to sort things out. There’s the whole 12-step process that you need to start working. Your 12-step work will involve a lot of self-inventory and coming to grips with some painful issues and feelings that
you’d rather not address – but must. read more from Promices.com…
12step.org offers an in depth 12 step overview. Below are direct links to each step which include videos, prayer and guidelines set forth to assist you in your recovery.
Clicking on the steps below will take you to 12step.org addiction recovery site.
A twelve-step program is a set of guiding principles (accepted by members as ‘spiritual principles,’ based on the approved literature) outlining a course of action for recovery from addiction, compulsion, or other behavioral problems. Originally proposed by Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) as a method of recovery from alcoholism, the Twelve Steps were first published in the 1939 book Alcoholics Anonymous: The Story of How More Than One Hundred Men Have Recovered from Alcoholism. The method was adapted and became the foundation of other twelve-step programs.
As summarized by the American Psychological Association, the process involves the following:
- Admitting that one cannot control one’s addiction or compulsion;
- Recognizing a higher power that can give strength;
- Examining past errors with the help of a sponsor (experienced member);
- Making amends for these errors;
- Learning to live a new life with a new code of behavior;
- Helping others who suffer from the same addictions or compulsions.
Twelve-step methods have been adapted to address a wide range of substance-abuse and dependency problems. Over 200 self-help organizations—often known as fellowships—with a worldwide membership of millions—now employ twelve-step principles for recovery. Narcotics Anonymous was formed by addicts who did not relate to the specifics of alcohol dependency.
Demographic preferences related to the addicts’ drug of choice has led to the creation of Cocaine Anonymous, Crystal Meth Anonymous, Pills Anonymous, Marijuana Anonymous and Nicotine Anonymous. Behavioral issues such as compulsion for, and/or addiction to, gambling, crime, food, sex, hoarding, debting and work are addressed in fellowships such as Gamblers Anonymous, Overeaters Anonymous, Food Addicts in Recovery Anonymous, Sexual Compulsives Anonymous, Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous, Sexaholics Anonymous, Sex Addicts Anonymous, Clutterers Anonymous, Debtors Anonymous and Workaholics Anonymous.
Auxiliary groups such as Al-Anon and Nar-Anon, for friends and family members of alcoholics and addicts, respectively, are part of a response to treating addiction as a disease that is enabled by family systems. CoDependents Anonymous (CoDA) addresses compulsions related to relationships, referred to as codependency (coda.org).
Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), the first twelve-step fellowship, was founded in Akron, Ohio on August 11, 1938 (although some speculate the date as being June 10, 1935, the date on which Dr. Bob had his last drink) by Bill Wilson and Dr. Bob Smith, known to AA members as “Bill W.” and “Dr. Bob”. They established the tradition within the “anonymous” twelve-step programs of using only first names “at the level of press, radio and film”.
As AA chapters were increasing in number during the 1930s and 1940s, the guiding principles were gradually defined as the Twelve Traditions. A singleness of purpose emerged as Tradition Five: “Each group has but one primary purpose—to carry its message to the alcoholic who still suffers.” Consequently, drug addicts who do not suffer from the specifics of alcoholism involved in AA hoping for recovery technically are not welcome in “closed” meetings unless they have a desire to stop drinking alcohol. The reason for such emphasis on alcoholism as the problem is to overcome denial and distraction.
The principles of AA have been used to form many numbers of other fellowships specifically designed for those recovering from various pathologies; each emphasizes recovery from the specific malady which brought the sufferer into the fellowship.
In 1953 AA gave permission for Narcotics Anonymous to use its Steps and Traditions.
The following are the original twelve steps as published by Alcoholics Anonymous:
- We admitted we were powerless over alcohol—that our lives had become unmanageable.
- Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
- Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
- Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
- Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
- Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
- Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
- Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.
- Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
- Continued to take personal inventory, and when we were wrong, promptly admitted it.
- 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.
- Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.
In some cases, where other twelve-step groups have adapted the AA steps as guiding principles, these have been altered to emphasize principles important to those particular fellowships, and to remove gender-biased language.
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