- Step 10 & 11 - Growing in Understanding & Effectiven

Step 10 & 11 - Growing in Understanding & Effectiven




12 Steps: Discussions related to the 12 Steps and using them as a treatment to recover from alcohol and drug addiction.

Step 10 & 11 - Growing in Understanding & Effectiven

Postby Dallas » Mon Feb 27, 2012 2:03 pm

Step 10 & 11: Growing in Understanding & Effectiveness

"Our next function is to grow in understanding and effectiveness.
This is not an overnight matter. It should continue for our lifetime." page 84, Big Book

When we discuss Step 10, with those that have only read Step 10 as one of the Steps "hanging on the wall" -- or listed in the list of 12 Steps, on page 59-60 of the Big Book -- about the only thing we'll hear them talk about is: "Continuing to take inventory and admitting it when they are wrong."

And, the same goes w/ Step 11. They will only discuss prayer & meditation -- when the instructions for Step 11 in the book, go way beyond, 'prayer & meditation'.

However, if we read the instructions in the Big Book, which explains to us "How to Practice Step 10" we'll discover that only a very small part of Step 10 involves "continuing to look for wrongs and admitting them."

Surely, we've got to keep our side of the street clean -- just as much as we need to eat food and drink water -- to stay alive and stay sober...

However, the MAIN FOCUS of Step 10 is: Growing and becoming effective.

This goes beyond "Spiritual growth and progress of a spiritual nature" (which is addressed in Step Eleven).

So, how about we take a look at it?

"to grow in understanding" -- Understanding IS a thing of the mind.

Before taking the Steps, we were admonished, at the bottom of page 58, Big Book... about the importance of "letting go of our old ideas absolutely."

We did that as a prerequisite of taking the First Nine Steps.

Now, in Step 10... we're reading things that relate to our brain "

"a new attitude" ~pg 86

"We react sanely and normally, and we will find that this has
happened automatically." ~pg 84-85

And, a peek into Step 11 (is very relevant when we are doing 10 & 11 'together') "Under these conditions we can employ our mental faculties with assurance, for after all God gave us brains to use."

Oh. You mean God... is NOT going to do my thinking for me? No. God is not going to do our thinking for us. He gave US brains to USE. :lol:

Ok. Remember what happened the last time you were in a meeting and someone discussed "their plans" -- and how some old-timers chuckled at them and seem to ridicule them for having plans, by saying something like: "If you want to hear God laugh -- tell him your plans"?

And, MANY of us (myself included at the time)... would laugh, too!

What was going on here? We were probably new, inexperienced, and we were listening to an oldtimer that we figured "this person must know something because they've been around here a long time" ...

WHEN apparently that old-timer had never read about Steps 10 & 11, in the Big Book! So, actually... he/she... should have been the joke of the laugh! :lol:

In Step 11: It tells us: "On awakening let us think about the twenty-four hours ahead. We consider our plans for the day. Before we begin, we ask God to direct our thinking, especially asking that it be divorced from self-pity, dishonest or self-seeking motives."

Imagine that! Step 11 is about way more than just... Prayer & Meditation ?

So, WHY would God be laughing at us... for "considering OUR PLANS" ... if this is precisely what the book is instructing us to do?

Warning: Be careful about WHAT you HEAR in meetings... Your life depends upon what's in the book... not on what you hear in meetings. If you don't read the book -- you'll never know the difference. So, it's a prerequisite: READ THE BOOK! :lol:

As I look back on the first 5 yrs of my sobriety -- sometimes, I almost feel like puking -- over the valuable time in "growing in understanding & effectiveness" ... that I didn't do, that I could have been doing!

Sure, I would use the old saying "Yeah, but, at least I stayed sober."

So, what? I'm EXPECTED to stay sober just as much as I'm expected to breath -- if I want to stay alive!

Sobriety -- is about SO MUCH MORE than just being physically sober! It's about MAKING PROGRESS in LIFE.

What kind of progress have you been making?

Are you busy -- patting yourself on the back 'for just not drinking'?

What were your plans for today?

What do you want to be doing w/ your life -- 5 yrs from now, IF you just stay sober?

Do you have goals, objectives and outcomes that you would like to achieve? Have you thought about them? Have you written them down? Have you asked yourself "What would it look like and what would it feel like and be like -- if I accomplished this? (or that).

What are you CURRENTLY doing... to grow, in understanding & effectiveness?

Dallas B. :wink:
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Postby MKL » Mon Feb 27, 2012 4:06 pm

I ask God every day how He wants me to serve my wife, our kids, dogs, coworkers etc. I am in the world to play the role God assigns, the Big Book tells me that in chapter five-5. For me growing in effectiveness is about growing spiritually and for me there is NO spiritual growth without work and selfsacrifice for others. My disease is selfishness and selfcenteredness so for me to grow spiritually i must die to self, to my selfcenteredness/selfishness and grow in my love and service to God and others.My plans always lead to emptyness and hurting others, when i follow Gods plan for my life, when i'm playing the roles he assigns, people like being around me because i'm not seeing what i can take. Since i sobered up in 1987 God has taken me from Idaho, where i sobered up, to Utah, New Mexico, Colorado, Pennsylvania, alot of places, plus i believe He guided me to my wife. Any dependence on my thinking is a joke thats why the BB says when we get up we ask God to direct our thinking. I'm in the minority but i believe God has a plan for all our lives. In chapter 7 it says in one part -follow the dictates of A HIGHER POWER and you will live in a new and wonderfull world-no matter what your present circumstances. I know the BB inside and out, i won't question others interpration of it, however the BB i read says i'm here to do Gods bidding, not my own.Steps 10 and 11 are necessary for me to do Gods bidding, step 10 cleans away my daily selfishness and selfcenteredness and step 11 prepares me for doing Gods work on a daily basis. Gods work for me is much more than meetings or contributing on this forum, it's loving my wife and kids and dogs as they deserve, going to work so i can pay the bills so i can serve others more effectively and enjoy life. Me i'll continue to pray for Gods bidding as me making plans never worked out. Step 11 for me, gets me in tune for how Gods wants me to serve others, it's not about me praying to God for the power to do my will.
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Postby Dallas » Mon Feb 27, 2012 6:49 pm

What is God's bidding?

I guess the answer to that question, outside of "helping others... especially alcoholics" will be unique as is "God, as they understand God."

"the dictates of a Higher Power."

What Is It -- that God WANTS us to do? For me, I found the answers to that question on page 133, Big Book.

For me, the ultimate of "self-centeredness" would be to sit back and do nothing much other than to try and help a few people around me to achieve and maintain their sobriety, and to feed myself, (and my family -- if I had one).

Does God use others, perhaps, to do his bidding -- by going to school, furthering their education, and pursuing a purpose of maybe -- coming up with solutions that could help the rest of the world?

Is it God's bidding for them to operate successful businesses -- that can employ and support the needs of many people?

Is it God's bidding -- for one, to become a police officer, or emergency responder, to be a peace maker, and to help others?

Is it God's bidding -- for one, to go to school, and become a lawyer -- that can help others, who cannot afford a lawyer, or others -- who would be tried unjustly without their service, and removed from their families?

What about Judges? Could it be God's bidding for another one, to become a Judge? Or, an architect? A pharmacist? A doctor? A nurse? An accountant?

Or, could it be... that if they are a sober alcoholic, that God has no other plans or purpose for them -- other than to live lowly lives -- with just having a job and going to meetings? And, trying to help another alcoholic?

I do know -- that God's purpose for me and His bidding for me -- is much greater than that. For others, it might not be. But, I don't really think it's "selfish and self-centeredness" for someone to work at improving their lives so that they can improve upon their living -- and to live a life of Higher Purpose.

Some people equate spirituality with being poor. I've tried that path. And, it has more negatives than it does positives. :lol:

It takes money and resources -- to help a lot of people. But, then again, perhaps God, as some understand God, has no intention for anyone to help a lot of people -- or to do big things in God's big universe. Perhaps -- it's an individual thing. And, if it is an individual thing -- it may be different -- for each different individual.

It took a whole lot of rich people -- donating a whole bunch of their money -- to pay for the work of a Mother Theresa. Without their money and contributions to carry on her work -- she would not have been able to help so many. So, perhaps -- God's bidding for the rich -- that would be able to support the efforts of Mother Theresa -- was for them to grow in understanding and effectiveness in the business world -- where they could generate the profits needed -- to help the poor.
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Re: Step 10 & 11 - Growing in Understanding & Effectiven

Postby Toast » Fri Mar 30, 2012 2:38 pm

Great post Dallas,

We're only asked to abstain from alcohol, not life.

When we think of all the wars that have been fought and millions of lives lost so folks like us could remain free to do what we want with our God given life at the end of the day we have to ask, ' was i worth dying for?'

Be well :D
Last edited by Toast on Sat Mar 31, 2012 2:47 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Step 10 & 11 - Growing in Understanding & Effectiven

Postby Dallas » Fri Mar 30, 2012 3:18 pm

Thank you Toast! Great to see you here this afternoon! You made my day. ;-)
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Re: Step 10 & 11 - Growing in Understanding & Effectiven

Postby Toast » Sun Apr 01, 2012 4:14 am

My pleasure Dallas,

I'm never far, always popping to learn just that little bit more that makes a such a huge difference to my day.

Be well :) :)
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Re: Step 10 & 11 - Growing in Understanding & Effectiven

Postby Toast » Sun Apr 01, 2012 4:30 am

PS, its Step 10 at my favourite Step meeting tonight, gonna drop a few bombs using what I’ve read in this superb forum and shake them (and me) out their slumber.

After all if you don’t shake the mixture it segregates!


Have a great day :wink:
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Re: Step 10 & 11 - Growing in Understanding & Effectiven

Postby Dallas » Mon Apr 02, 2012 1:47 pm

Waiting for an update on that Step 10 meeting. :-)
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Re: Step 10 & 11 - Growing in Understanding & Effectiven

Postby Toast » Mon Apr 02, 2012 3:07 pm

Hi Dallas,

Well when my turn came i threw in a few incendiaries asking just how much have we really grown in ' Understanding & Effectiveness' as both human beings and recovering alcoholics. Plus i asked just how good a citizen am i today? For instance do i give blood, pay my taxes, take an interest in the affairs of my community etc....

When i was finished there was silence for a while until the next person to speak told us how pleased he was with his new log fire and how much it saves him on his electricity bill. That sure got everyone on the edge of there seats. You know i really must look into that? :wink:

I think once we've been through the programme the only fear we have left in the fear of success. And if nothing changes then nothing changes.

Be well :) :)
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Re: Step 10 & 11 - Growing in Understanding & Effectiven

Postby Toast » Tue Sep 11, 2012 4:45 pm

Hi,

Had to share on step 10 at a speaker meeting last night. Got some great feedback when it went around the room.

Guess the bottom line is after going through the 1st 9 steps i should now know enough about my condition to come to some honest conclusions about my thoughts and my motives. After all its from them i get all my words and actions and thats what causes all the problems in my life, if i'm not careful.

The trouble is some day's i yearn to be 'careless' and just let rip! But my history tells me that would just sabotage the years of hard work i've had to put in to get me where i am today. And when i look back its a million miles from where i was when i first came into AA, unemployed and unemployable. The only cordial relationship i had back then was with my local barman, and he would only listen to me because he was paid too!

Some days keeping a lid on me is really hard work!

PS, when i first came into AA i my early 30's me and my ego used to love doing the share at a speakers meeting, now that i'm in my early 50's the day after i do a share i'm as flat as a pancake and as crotchy as hell, anyone else have a similar experience?
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12 Step Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery | - Step 10 & 11 - Growing in Understanding & Effectiven