I get lost when they refer to books other than the Big Book. I don't read the NA, OA, GA, or Any Other A, books. I've read a bunch of the other books -- but the Big Book serves all I need. In comparison -- it seems like the other A's tried to copy the BB ideas -- but they changed them so much that they aren't nearly the same.
For me -- Step Three is "I make a decision" to do something. I haven't done anything other than to -- make a decision.
When we read the Step -- that's exactly what the Step says...
Step 3. Made a decision -- to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
It doesn't say "We turned over our..." it says "We made a decision to -- turn our..."
How many times do I need to make a decision?
1. If I'm often changing my mind -- I might make a decision a hundred times -- without EVER doing what I decided on doing. Or,
2. Or, I might keep making the same decision -- if I never do what I decided to do -- regardless of why.
Step 3: I made a decision to move to California.
Does that mean I'm in California? Nope. Just means I made a decision to move to California.
Like the old kids joke "Three frogs sitting on a log -- two decide to jump in the water -- how many frogs are now sitting on the log?" Answer is: Three. They decided to jump in the water -- but they didn't jump. They only made the decision.
PRACTICING STEP THREE: Okay, so maybe like swimming? I'm going to make a decision to practice swimming today... I never get wet, because I'm only practicing making decisions.
UNLESS: I change what Step Three says. And, that's not suggested.
It could be the same as changing Step 12: "Having WENT TO SLEEP as the result of these Steps..."
With that said... When I was newly sober -- I was going through a particularly rough time. Someone suggested to me to PRACTICE Step 3, and to carry the Step 3, prayer w/ me and to read it and say it often throughout the day.
I did that. It seem to work because "It made me FEEL better" It made me FEEL like something changed or was changing.
What I later discovered was: I was FEELING better -- but, nothing was changing! The rough times kept coming back!
That's when I learned that "STEP THREE IS ONLY MAKING A DECISION"
When I was new and jittery -- I could have made a decision to go to the liquor store and buy a jug. If I went and bought the jug -- I would "feel better" as soon as the jug was in my hands!
I wouldn't even have to pop the top or take a drink -- I would of felt better just knowing -- that "things are about to change!"
But... IF nothing changes... NOTHING changes.
Steps 4 through 10 is how I "carry out the decision that I made in Step 3."
Yep. Steps 4 through 10 is HOW I carry out the decision I made in Step 3.
When I did that -- Steps 4 to 10... I began to change, my life began to change, my results began to change -- and I stopped creating those rough spots to go through.
Now... I did continue to create rough spots, but not as often. So, I was able to use Step 10 -- for the new rough spot -- (which is the same in principle as Steps 4-10) to handle the NEW rough spots.
And, by continually doing Steps 11 & 12, after each new 10... I finally developed some structure and discipline in my life -- and my life continued to get better.
If practicing making a decision w/ Step Three makes someone feel better -- by all means -- DO IT! It's better to fee better than to feel bad.
But, when they want to "get over" what's making them feel bad -- take Steps 4 through 10.