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Alcoholics Anonymous Today

The 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous

Step One - Admitting Defeat
We admitted we were powerless over our addiction(s), that our lives had become unmanageable.

  • A statement of the problem
  • Breaking through denial - gaining an awareness that there is a problem
  • Admission of powerlessness and unmanageability of one's life - honesty

Step Two - Return to Sanity
Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.

  • The solution to the problem is spiritual in nature
  • Offers hope
  • Looking inside self for the solution

Step Three - Trust
Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.

  • The first action step - making a decision to do something different through finding a solution
  • Developing faith
  • Beginning to surrender to a Higher Power

Step Four - Looking Within
Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.

  • Exploring denial and self-deception
  • Identifying barriers (resentments, fears, harms to relationships with the Divine, self, others and the Universe)

Step Five - Secrets
Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.

  • Courage to accept the duality of one's imperfections and one's value
  • Willingness to take advice and accept guidance
  • Forgiveness of self and others

Step Six - New Ways
Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.

  • A commitment to change
  • Taking an honest look at self-defeating attitudes, behaviors and belief system
  • Willingness to accept feedback from others

Step Seven - Courage to Change
Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.

  • Recognizing one's limitations
  • Commitment of action to change

Step Eight - Facing the Consequences
Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.

  • Taking responsibility for one's own actions (past, present and future)
  • Recognizing that addiction is a chronic, progressive disease

Step Nine - Confronting the Past
Made direct amends to such people whenever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.

  • Making amends to those we harmed
  • Releasing the past and experiencing a new freedom

Step Ten - Vigilance
Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.

  • Remission is possible through vigilance to living the principles of this program
  • Practicing the steps daily as a way of life

Step 11 - Embracing the Mystery
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.

  • Taking time daily for reflection
  • Being inspired
  • Trusting intuition

Step 12 - Awakening
Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to others, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.

  • We only keep what we have by giving it away
  • Service reminds us of our past and creates a bridge to the future

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