Hello ceedeells!!! Welcome to the site! It's great to have you and your question. My hope is, that not only will you find the answers to the things that you search for -- but, that you'll also stick around and become a regular here -- reaching out with an offer to help them. We have many thousands of more readers -- that come through here looking for the answers, but often, they don't take the time to ask the questions, or they join the forum and haven't developed the courage yet, to raise their hand and speak up! So, you, indeed are most welcome and encouraged!
Other than the praying for the others, the other things you mentioned can be found in the book, or at least the "concept" (such as gratitude lists -- will be found in the Chapter to Wives, under "counting our blessings") of the suggestion.
Our BB, tells us specifically and precisely what we need to do and suggests what we not do -- so that we can recover. If we stick w/ this book and it's instructions -- my experience is, that we will not only stay sober, but we will create wonderful lives that really are worth living -- sober.
My very first sponsor told me: "Dallas, if I ever ask you to do something that can not be backed up by what you'll find from the front cover to the end of page 164 -- disregard what I've told you. It isn't worth knowing, and even if it is worth knowing... you might end up drunk from doing it. So, keep it in the book and you'll be fine." He also told me, "If you are ever in a meeting -- and what they are doing is not in the book, I suggest you not do it." He said, try to be reasonable w/ them, kind, patient, loving & tolerant -- because each group is autonomyous. If they want to stand on their head until their ears turn read as they read Chapter 5, they have every right to do that. It's their Group's choice." He said, "If you don't want to do that, because it isn't in the book, you can go to a different group. Or, get a coffee pot and a book and start your own group!"
(However, he did suggest that I get through the Steps first, and acquire at least a little bit of time before I did that!)
AA Groups are not the AA Program of Recovery. The Group is simply a group of like-minded AA's that have a place where they meet for Fellowship and to offer to be of help to each other and the new person.
I don't mean this, as "we do not need the Fellowship"... we do need it and we should want it. We don't have to throw out the baby because the bath water is dirty. And, we don't have to change the water. We can always hold the towel or clean up after the bath. In other words -- we can always find something to do to "be of service to the group" to support their efforts to help other alcoholics -- even when we know -- that what they are doing... isn't what they should be doing.
Our book suggests that we be helpful -- to anyone that is attempting to help alcoholics to recover.
Another thing my first sponsor told me was: "If I ask you to do something, I don't mind you asking me to shw you where this is in the book. And, always feel free to ask the Group, or the person in the grou 'where can I find this in the BB?' and expect them to show you."
Now, off topic -- but relates -- my current sponsor -- if I were to do that with him... he would tell me that he doesn't have time to discuss it with me... do it or else find another sponsor.
(I love him and I have so much respect for him and for his example of his works, that I have no need to question him. And, even though there were times he was suggesting something to me... that I couldn't yet find in the book, sometimes a year later, I would find it in there!).
Each one of us must take responsibility for our own sobriety. And, we can't take responsibility for anyone elses sobriety. When a guy comes to me and says "I keep relapsing and will you sponsor me?" I ask him "Are you willing to give up all your old ideas that you've been getting from the meetings you've been attending -- and start fresh out of the book?"
(All habitual slippers think they already know everything about AA... from all the bad info that they've picked up in meetings. Some of the stuff that is said in meetings... will get an alcoholic of my type drunk... if we do it that way!)
Every time I hear those in AA spout off about "praying for the other guys" etceteras... I ask them "Where in the BB can I find this? Will you show me?" And, for the last 23 1/2 years... thousands of meetings, and tons of people that said it... NOT ONE has ever showed me where they found it! I read the book every day, and read it through regularly. I'm always finding things I didn't find before -- but, so far... "praying for others" is not one of them. What I have found is cautions and warnings that indicate "don't do that! It will lead to trouble!"
One of the reasons that the BB was written... was the "fear"... that the AA Program of Recovery... which was being "carried by word of mouth" would screw up the whole deal and they'd all end up drunk!
This is the PRIMARY reason that the BB was written -- was to get away from "the word of mouth message of make it up as you think it up." And, to eliminate the problem of us all getting drunk -- at the same time!
They figured that "If one person is reading the book... he/she will be able to 12 Step those that didn't!"
I could share w/ you the many places where it indicates not to pray for others, but I think you know your book well enough to know where they are!
Here are a few more things that you'll hear in meetings that you won't find in the BB:
"Just don't drink"
"Just don't drink no matter what"
"90 meetings in 90 days"
"meeting makers make it"
"don't make any major decisions for a year"...
Those things don't work for the alcoholics of the type that the BB was written for.
Sorry my answer wasn't as brief as possible -- I must have needed to share that for me or someone else... and not you. So, please forgive me!