Working The Steps
Concepts, tips, hints, tricks, humor and more, all dealing with "working the 12 steps."
12 Step City [offsite link]
A 12 Step site which provides a recovery chat, forums, e-cards and other positive information.
A Fearless Step Four
Step Four moves us into action. We finally begin to discover who we are and the many "whys" of our behavior. This is one of the few steps that is really all about YOU!
A Life-Changing Decision
Step Three is to make a very important decision that will change your life. Are you ready and can you really turn it over? This is not an easy Step to take and this article is only a small part of what this Step is all about.
A New Freedom
Our Higher Power, sponsor, and honesty are the main ingredients to a successful Step 5. We will never be perfect but we can begin to practice the principles that will give us peace and serenity.
Big Book Step Study (.com) [offsite link]
Find a Big Book 12 Step Study near you.
Defects and Willingness
Are your defects the root of your addiction or are your defects the result of your addiction? It really doesn't matter. The solution to both is in willingness and our Higher Power.
Denial is what keeps most folks away from recovery. We work Step One and we admit we are powerless over our addiction. But what about that defect that won't go away? Is it really a defect or are we denying that it is another addiction?
Easy Doesn't Always Do It
The phrase "easy does it" is familiar to everyone. But easy doesnīt do it when we pick and choose which steps we work. Recovery means working all 12 Steps, not just the easy ones!
Fear and Resentments
We may be uncomfortable about our first attempt at Steps 4 and 5 but we know these are a "must". Yet, I have found that some postpone these because they are in fear that their resentments will be with them forever and the steps will have been done in vain.
How and Why the 12 Steps Work
Can a person be released from an addiction through self-help, psychiatry, or medication? Here are reasons how and why 12 Step Recovery programs have been successful for over 50 years. If you have already tried these steps and you feel they didn't work, try again!
How to Make Amends - Step 8
Every August (8th month), I republish this article. It is one of my most read and I hope one of my most helpful.
Your ability to make amends with confidence and sincerity depends on how well you prepare. Don't believe that you can go this route alone.
Humility and Step Seven
The word "humility" takes on new meaning as we progress through the steps. By the time we are ready for Step Seven, we understand how beautiful and freeing humility can be.
Independence Through Step Three
When we let go and let God we are practicing Step Three. Think of the angst you suffered in the past by trying to do it all by yourself. In sobriety we never have to bear a burden alone. We turn it over to a Higher Power and feel a freedom that gives us peace.
Love and Resentments
Listing resentments in Step Four can be easy when there is anger or real dislike of a person. It can be very difficult when we have to look at the people we love who are supportive and in our lives today.
More Step One?
We only have 12 Steps to guide us in recovery and we read and discuss them over and over. No matter how often, we can still read and see something we never saw before or famiiliar words take on new meaning.
Perfection One Day at a Time
Most people who have addictions have a problem trying to be perfect. There is one thing we can do perfectly and that is work Step One--a strange combination of perfection and humility.
Please Don't Say You're Sorry - Step 9
My most popular article to date is "How To Make Amends - Step 8". Since that is only the first part of the process, I wanted to republish my thoughts on Step 9. Only by working these two steps can we begin the maintenance of our sobriety and know the fruits of the Promises.
We always talk about principles and practicing them means we get the opportunity to work on them every day. You can focus on specific principles when you work the steps if you know what they are.
Reflecting on Amends
We may have formally taken Steps 8 and 9 but there may be certain people that prompt us to think twice about the amends we made and is there anything more to say.
Step 1 - Managing the Chaos
A New Year requires a look at Step One. We all understand the powerless part of it but are we still able to manage our lives in recovery.
Step 1 - Reclaiming your Power
No matter what method we use to begin recovery we must look at why we just couldnīt quit in the first place. This is a reminder for those already in a 12 Step program and an invitation for those not yet in recovery to learn more.
One does not have to be have an addiction to see the beauty of this step. Anyone who desires a more spiritual life can follow the suggestions of Step Eleven.
Step Five Today
No matter how many times we study a step we find something meaningful. Or sometimes we are reminded of how we felt and worked the step for the first time.
Step Four, Column Four, Our Part
Step Four is the first of the action steps. It is the beginning of our quest to know who we are and what part we played in it all. It begins shifting the blame from others to where it belongs..us!
Step Six and the Principle of Willingness
Ready, willing and able. We must be ready and willing to have our defects removed but we are only able to do this with the help of our Higher Power. But do we want to get rid of all of them?
Step Ten goes beyond the suggestions for recovery. It can and should be a part of everyone's daily life. But it is special for those following the 12 Steps because it holds a very special promise.
Step Ten and a Daily Inventory
The personal inventory we make each evening helps us maintain our sobriety and spiritual connection to a Higher Power. It is not always about good and bad but what could we have done better or different in words and actions for the good of all.
Step Three: After the Decision
Step Three is much more than a decision. Turning our will and lives over to a Higher Power takes practice. We'll never be perfect but every time we can let go, we grow spiritually and emotionally.
Step Twelve is the last of the steps but marks a new beginning for us. We have found faith but now we have to prove that faith through service to anyone in need.
Step Twelve Heroes
Step Twelve is all about reaching out to others no matter how long you have been in recovery; one day, 25 years...it makes no difference. Find the hero inside of you by practicing this step every day.
Step Two: Easy or Not?
If you find it difficult to believe in a higher power, or you already believe in a higher power, Step 2 is the beginning of the solution to our problems. Fight the insanity now!
Steps Four and Five--Again!
The only way we can continue to learn about ourselves is to work Steps Four and Five. Each time we do, we reveal more about ourselves and get closer to the person we want to be.
The List and Living Amends
No matter how many times we read and share about the 12 Steps, there is always something new. Sometimes it is just a new thought and other times it is a real awakening. More is always revealed to us.
What Am I Missing?
It took us so long to get into recovery that the early days of sobriety might seem too good to be true. When life becomes "normal" it might be something unfamiliar to us. We might question our recovery and ask, "what am I missing?"
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