Monday, October 10, 2011

Step 1 (Part 2)

My study on the fist step:

The following is from the website A.A. way of life:

I am just going to pick out the main points but feel free to go to the link above and read it!

Step 1. We admitted we were powerless over alcohol - that our lives had become unmanageable.

Surrender is ESSENTIAL in order to recover from alcoholism. The "Big Book" devotes 51 pages to the first part of the surrender process; which is to admit we have a problem that we cannot help ourselves with.

Alcohol is a poison. The NORMAL reaction to alcohol is to have one or two drinks and not go any further. But, OUR reaction is MUCH different. We have one or two drinks just to get STARTED. Once an alcoholic starts drinking, because of the unique way it's processed in their body, we set off a craving where we want more alcohol. This is an allergy or abnormal reaction to alcohol because about nine out of ten people don't get that, once they start drinking. So an alcoholic CANNOT always predict how much they are going to drink, and a NON-alcoholic CAN always predict how much they are going to drink.

Below is from

How It Works

The fact is that most alcoholics, for reasons yet obscure, have lost the power of choice in drink. Our so-called willpower becomes practically non-existent. We are unable, at certain times, to bring into our consciousness with sufficient force the memory of the suffering and humiliation of even a week or a month ago. We are without defense against the first drink.
- A.A. Big Book, p. 24 (Substitute your own addiction for drink if your addiction is different than alcohol)

Step 1 is the first step to freedom. I admit to myself that something is seriously wrong in my life. I have created messes in my life. Perhaps my whole life is a mess, or maybe just important parts are a mess. I admit this and quit trying to play games with myself anymore. I realize that my life has become unmanageable in many ways. It is not under my control anymore. I do things that I later regret doing and tell myself that I will not do them again. But I do. I keep on doing them, in spite of my regrets, my denials, my vows, my cover-ups and my facades. The addiction has become bigger than I am. The first step is to admit the truth of where I am, that I am really powerless over this addiction and that I need help.
- From

When we admit our powerlessness and the inability to manage our own lives, we open the door to recovery. No one could convince us that we were addicts. It is an admission that we had to make for ourselves. When some of us have doubts, we ask ourselves this question: "Can I control my use of any form of mind or mood-altering chemicals?"
Most will see that control is impossible the moment it is suggested. Whatever the outcome, we find that we cannot control our using for any length of time.
This would clearly suggest that an addict has no control over drugs. Powerlessness means using against our will. If we can't stop, how can we tell ourselves we are in control? The inability to stop using, even with the greatest willpower and the most sincere desire, is what we mean when we say, "We have absolutely no choice".
- Narcotics Anonymous Basic Text, Chapter 4/Step 1

Admitting powerlessness is absolutely essential to breaking the addiction cycle, which is made up of five points:
  1. Pain ->
  2. Reaching out to an addictive agent, such as work, food, sex, alcohol, or dependent relationships to salve our pain ->
  3. Temporary anesthesia ->
  4. Negative consequences ->
  5. Shame and guilt, which result in more pain or low self-esteem
For example, the workaholic who has low self-esteem (pain) begins to overwork (addictive agent), which results in praise, success, and achievement (relief). However, as a rule, family relationships and his personal relationship with God suffer terribly because of preoccupation with work (negative consequences). The result is an even greater sense of shame and guilt because of inadequacies, both real and imagined, which brings him back to point 1 in the addiction cycle. Now the workaholic feels compelled to work even harder to overcome his guilt.
Understanding the addiction cycle is important because it helps explain why for both the Oxford Group and for Bill Wilson, the admission of powerlessness is the first step to recovery. Otherwise, we remain caught. If we rely on willpower alone, then the only thing we know to do is to escalate our addiction to get out of the pain. Step 1 calls us to do less - to yield, to surrender, to let go.
- Serenity, A Companion for Twelve Step Recovery, p. 22-23

This is just a few stuff that I found floating around there. If you need help with recovery please talk to someone.

Just think: you have tried everything else why not this?

1 comment:

  1. I like that you are sharing this, not just for others, but for you. When you take the time to write (or type) something it sticks with you much more than reading it or even talking about it. My son told me yesterday that he's on Step Three :)