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12 Step programs
Exactly what is the purpose of the 12 step programs?
Twelve-step programs have been a vital part of the recovery process and the basis for numerous recovery programs. It was established over 65 years ago by a small group of alcoholics, the AA program provides easy tools for living based upon a set of spiritual concepts and a dependence on the fellowship of males and females who share their experience and offer support as part of a long-term process of recovery. This method has since been adjusted for the treatment of many other addictions, and now consists of other self-supporting fellowships.
What Are the 12 Steps of AA?
Is Alcoholics Anonymous Religious? In the “big Book”, the main text of AA that describes the program in the twelve steps that are outlined as a “set of principles, spiritual in nature, when practiced as a way of life, can expel the fascination to drink and allow the sufferer to become happily and usefully whole”.
The 12 steps of AA are as follows:
- We confessed we were helpless over alcohol and that our lives had actually ended up being uncontrollable.
Numerous alcoholics have a tough time confessing that they cannot manage their alcohol use. Once they acknowledge that they are not able to stop by themselves, the recovery process can start.
- Came to believe that a power higher than ourselves might restore us to sanity.
AA thinks that individuals with an alcohol addiction need to look to something greater than themselves to recover. Those working the steps are totally free to choose whatever greater power works for them.
- Made a conclusion to turn our personal choice and our lives over to the love of God as we understand Him.
For this step, the alcoholic knowingly chooses to turn themselves over to whatever or whomever they think their greater power is, with this release, often comes recovery.
- Made a searching and moral inventory of ourselves.
This step needs self-examination that can be uneasy, however, sincerity is important in this process. The secret is to recognize any areas of previous remorse, shame, regret or anger.
- Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
This step includes confessing to past poor behavior. Typically, alcoholics will share what they wrote down throughout the previous step with their sponsor.
- Were completely prepared to have God remove all these flaws of character.
The alcoholic admits that they are all set to have their greater power eliminate the wrongs they noted in Step 4.
- Humbly asked Him to eliminate our shortcomings.
Everyone has character flaws, whether they can be found in the type of impatience, anger, passiveness, criticism or negativity. The recovering alcoholic is not strong enough to get rid of these problems by themselves, so they ask their greater power to do so.
- Made a list of all the individuals we have harmed, and became willing to make amends to all of them.
Alcoholics write down all individuals they have mistreated through their alcohol addiction. The wrongs might vary from big to small, or from stealing from them to buy more alcohol, or talking adversely behind their backs.
- Made direct amends to such individuals wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
Many alcoholics work with their sponsor to find the best way to finish this step. Making amends could consist of writing a letter to an individual or sitting down face to face with them.
- Persistent to take personal inventory when we were wrong promptly admitting it.
This step includes a dedication to monitor yourself for any behavior that might be damaging to yourself or others and to confess when you are wrong.
- Prayer and meditation is done through sought to advance our conscious contact with God, as we understand Him, expecting understanding of His personal choice for us and for the power to communicate that out.
Step 10 needs you to dedicate to some sort of spiritual practice. That practice might be anything from prayer, meditation, or reading scriptures.
- Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these Steps, we formed the exertion to bring this message to alcoholics, and to custom these concepts in all our affairs.
This step motivates members to help others in their recovery. Many members become sponsors once they have finished the 12 steps.
The AA 12 Traditions
These traditions act as standards for living and interacting both within AA and outside the program. The 12 Traditions were first created by the Alcoholics Anonymous groups in their early years (1930s and 1940s). These traditions outgrew experiences within the groups of what worked and exactly what didn’t work concerning the effectiveness in helping others to achieve and maintain sobriety. A.A. has actually continued these traditions and are the traditions that continue to be followed in the majority of other 12 step fellowships too.
Our accepted comfortable state should come first; personal recovery relies on A.A. unity
Each member of Alcoholics Anonymous is a small part of a terrific whole. A.A. that should continue to live or the majority of us will certainly die. For this reason, our common welfare comes first. However, individual welfare follows close afterward.
For our groups purpose, there is one supreme authority – a caring God as He might reveal Himself in our group conscience. Our leaders are but trusted servants; they do not govern.
For our group purpose, there is one supreme authority – a caring God as He might reveal Himself in our group conscience.
The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking.
Our subscription should consist of all who struggle with alcohol addiction. Thus, we might decline none who want to recover. Nor should A.A. membership ever rely on money or conformity. An A.A. group is any two or three alcoholics that are brought together for sobriety, because of this, as a group, they have no other affiliation.
Each group ought to be self-governing except in matters affecting other groups or A.A. as a whole.
With respect to its own affairs, each A.A. group must be accountable to no other authority than its own conscience. However, when its plan concerns the well-being of surrounding groups, those groups should be sought advice from. And no group, regional committee, or individual should ever do something about it that may significantly impact A.A. as a whole without consulting the trustees of the General Service Board. With such concerns, our common welfare is vital.
Each group has one main purpose – to bring its message to the alcoholic who still suffers.
Each Alcoholics Anonymous group should be a spiritual entity having one main purpose. This purpose is to carry its message to the alcoholic who still suffers.
An A.A. group should never endorse, finance, or lend the A.A. name to any connected or associated facility or outside business, in fear of problems with money, property, and prestige divert from our main purpose.
Problems with money, property and authority might quickly divert us from our main spiritual goal. We believe, for that reason, that any firm property of actual use to A.A. ought to be independently incorporated and handled, therefore dividing the material from the spiritual. An A.A. group, should never go into business. Secondary helps A.A., such as clubs or healthcare facilities which need property or administration that should be integrated. Therefor distinguished that, if needed, they can be freely discarded by the groups. Thus, such centers should not use the A.A. name. Their management needs to be the sole duty of those individuals who economically support them. For clubs, A.A. supervisors are generally chosen. However, healthcare facilities, in addition to other areas of recovery, should be well outside A.A. and medically supervised. While an A.A. group might abide by someone, such cooperation should never go as far as affiliation or endorsement, actual or implied. An A.A. group can bind itself to nobody.
Every A.A. group should be fully self-supporting, declining outdoor contributions.
The A.A. groups themselves should be completely supported by the voluntary contributions of their own members. We believe that each group must quickly achieve this ideal; that any public solicitation of funds using the name of Alcoholics Anonymous is extremely unsafe, whether it be by groups, clubs, medical facilities or other outside agencies; that agreement of large presents from any source, or of contributions bringing any commitment what so ever, is risky. Then too, we view with much concern those A.A. treasuries which continue, beyond sensible reserves, to collect funds for no mentioned A.A. function. Experience has actually alerted us that nothing so surely can ruin our spiritual heritage as useless conflicts over property, money and authority.
Alcoholics Anonymous must remain permanently non-professional, however our service centers might employ special employees.
Alcoholics Anonymous ought to remain permanently non-professional. We specify professionalism as the profession of counseling alcoholics for fees or hire. Nevertheless, we may employ alcoholics where they are going to perform those services for which we may otherwise need to appoint non-alcoholics. Such unique services might be well reimbursed. However, our usual A.A. “12th Step” work is never to be paid for.
A.A. as such, should never ever be organized; however, we might create service boards or committees directly accountable to those they serve.
Each A.A. group requires the least possible organization. Alternating leadership is the best. The small group might choose its secretary, the big group its alternating committee, and the group of a big city their main or inter group committee, which frequently uses a full-time secretary. The trustees of the General Service Board are a result of our A.A. General Services Committee. They are the custodians of our A.A. Tradition and the receivers of voluntary A.A. contributions by which we preserve our A.A. General Services Office in New York. They are licensed by the groups to manage our over-all public relations and they ensure the stability of our principal newspaper, the A.A. Grapevine. All such representatives are to be directed in the spirit of service, for true leaders in A.A. and however, are trusted and experienced servants of the whole. They obtain no real authority from their titles; they do not govern. Universal respect is crucial to their effectiveness.
Alcoholics Anonymous has no viewpoint on outside problems; for this reason, the A.A. name ought to never be drawn into public debate.
No A.A. group or member must ever, in such way regarding link to A.A., reveal any viewpoint on outside problems, especially those of politics, alcohol reform or sectarian religion. The Alcoholics Anonymous groups opposes nobody. Concerning such matters can reveal no views what so ever.
Our public relations policy is based upon destination instead of promo; we constantly preserve individual privacy at the level of press, radio and movies.
Our relations with the public ought to be defined by individual privacy. We believe A.A. should prevent mind-blowing marketing. Our names and photos as A.A. members ought not be relayed, recorded or openly printed. Our public relations must be directed by the concept of destination instead of promo. There is never ever need to praise ourselves. We feel that it is better to let our friends recommend us.
Privacy is the spiritual structure of all our traditions, ever advising us to place principles above personalities.
Lastly, we of Alcoholics Anonymous think that the concept of privacy has a tremendous spiritual significance. It advises us that we are to place principles before personalities; that we are in fact to practice a real humbleness. This to the end that our terrific true blessings might never ever ruin us; that we will permanently reside in appreciative reflection of Him who commands all of us.
Does the Model Work?
Due to the privacy of the program and absence of official research studies readily available, it’s hard to tell simply how efficient the 12 Step model is. Nevertheless, the prominence of this kind of treatment in addition to success stories from recovering addicts suggests that it works and is effective.
At the minimum, the 12 Step models offer support, motivation, and accountability for individuals who truly wish to conquer their addiction. The sponsorship model along with regular meetings motivates the social support that has helped many individuals remain clean.
Are you thinking about finding a 12 Step program that could help you beat your addiction? With more than 50,000 Alcoholics Anonymous groups across the country (and countless other Anonymous groups for numerous addictions), you’re bound to find one that works for you. Call us now so we can help you find a meeting.