- formal step one

formal step one




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

formal step one

Postby gr8full1 » Mon Jan 30, 2006 8:15 pm

does anyone have a suggestion for a formal first step?
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Re: formal step one

Postby Dallas » Mon Jan 30, 2006 10:19 pm

gr8full1 wrote:does anyone have a suggestion for a formal first step?


Gr8full1, welcome to Step12.com, and to the forum. Thank you for joining in and for your participation!!!

I'm not sure if I understand precisely what you're asking ... but, I'll give it a shot with an answer... and hopefully I can hit close to the target.

When I'm taking others through the 12 Steps, I'll have them read selected pages in the Big Book that deal with Step 1. Then, we read it together, and I ask them questions about what they read.

What's most important for the First Step, is that the person has a clear understanding of what alcoholism is, so that they can decide for themselves, based upon their experience if they are really alcoholic... to the point that they can become convinced in their innermost self, that they are really alcoholic.

And, according to the Big Book, there are different classifications or types of alcoholics and potential alcoholics.

There are other tools, such as the 20 Questions, that sometimes help break the ice of a new conversation about drinking habits with a new prospect for Alcoholics Anonymous. Those are handy also.

I don't want to make my answer real long here... I may be off target as to what you are actually asking.

If I missed the mark... you can ask a little more specifically, and I'll give it another try. :lol:

Dallas
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Step 1

Postby musicmode » Tue Jan 31, 2006 3:32 am

Hey all...name's Anne, alcoholic,

My first contact with AA was an oldtimer named Tom...he said that no one can decipher if I'm an alcoholic but me, however, he took the liberty of pointin' out that if I'm askin' the questions, chances are, I already know the answers, I just gotta become willin' to admit it to myself...then he asked me to ponder his next question: do you believe you're an alcoholic? Not too much ponderin' happened...I said yes, & it was from the gut. He says 'sounds like you're ready to see what we have to offer' & told me what time the meetin' was that night. This all was after a very long conversation where he talked & I listened. It'd been 4 days since my last drink, shakin' &stirred :mrgreen: ...what he had to say though was sinkin' in where it needed to. He asked me if I can accept that truth about myself, I absorbed it into my head & sounded it down to my gut & said yes; he asked me if I was powerless, I said I can't get enough once I start; he asked me if my life was unmanageable, I laughed--not in humor though. He asked me, can you say it. I said: My name is Anne, I'm an alcoholic. He said that I'd just formally taken the first step, and welcome to Alcoholics Anonymous...see you at 8. I felt such a stillness within me when I hung up, inspite of the vibrates. Funny how I hadn't thought-a that first phone call in such a long time. The first step--admitting to yourself. Later gaters, Annie 8)
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Postby Dimples » Wed Jun 13, 2007 4:05 pm

Well I finally sought out a sponser. We talked and she asked me if I had started the steps yet and I said of course 1 & 2 were a given but I was having trouble with 3. She stopped me and said lets start at 1. She gave me some things to "ponder" (love that word) and suggested that I get a journel to write my thoughts in. She gave me three things to think about and damn I thought it would be easy but it really has me thinking and ya know? thinking is a good thing...So here I am, day 16, 5 hours into my sober day today, looking forward to tonights meeting and feeling better than I have felt in years! My name is Paula aka Dimples and I am an alcoholic and I am thankful to God and to the fellowship of AA for my sobriety TODAY!!
P
90 in 90 day 16
:D
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Postby Dallas » Wed Jun 13, 2007 6:22 pm

Hey Paula,

It's great to hear from you! Congrats on another day sober!!!!!

It sounds like you've picked a very fine sponsor!!! So, congrats on your choice for a sponsor, also!

I'm looking forward to reading of your experiences in your daily sober living and your experiences as you take the Steps! This is an awesome way of living and it gets better and better and better!!!

Since you like to think... (I'm a thinker, too) here is one for you to think on.... "As you stay sober, and grab on to our way of living with the 12 Steps, and as you demonstrate using those tools to solve your problems and to create a better life for yourself... it not only benefits you and your life... but it helps and encourages me, too!"

For me.... when I was new, and I didn't believe much about anything.... I eventually came to believe in something ... by watching other people like you, who were making it -- staying sober and doing the deal!

Thank you for sharing your experience, strength and hope!!!

Dallas
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Postby Dimples » Wed Jun 13, 2007 7:04 pm

My pleasure Brother!!
:wink:
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My name is Anne, I'm an alcoholic

Postby musicmode » Wed Jun 20, 2007 6:27 am

Here are a few things that were suggested to me:

Keep it simple ### sounded really complicated to me :? :wink: ####, take it easy; read, read, read; baby steps-gotta crawl before we walk; pick up the phone/talk to your sponsor; work your steps; and--here it ### ####....keep coming back-it works if ya work it ### it really ####.

Man...I tell ya...if anyone of those folks would-a said to me that 7 years from now, you'll be driving a school bus (sober and clean are big&definite requirements--no brainer there), you'll be living on ### the bank, of #### 10 acres of land that is lush, green, on a hill-side with a grand view, old fashioned, down to earth neighbors--and you'll like it--I'd have wondered which one of us just came off the sauce, them or me. It occured to me the other day, and the occurance came from deep down inside, with a gratitude and peace that were once so foreign to me--that thought was...wow! Here I am, doing exactly what I want to do, and doing that in the exact place I want to live...waaa-aay cool 8) :wink: . I was told once that true happiness isn't a deep-barrell laugh, that true happiness ####### actually brings a tear to your eye/puts a lump in your throat. Then it occured to me...that--to think--all I had ####### to do to have all that I have is stay sober??? What a concept! And...so simple, too. At my first first year...###, had to go out and prove to myself for sure that I am an alcoholic :wink:--had to actually make sure, y'know, test that allergy theory :twisted: ####, a guy of 4 years at that time wrote in the card, and then when he shared, said, that all of my dreams would come true ###'s what he ####, and added to that by saying that I didn't even know what those dreams were yet, he then promised with "wait and see". He said that he knew that I didn't know what he was talking about then, but I would...if I kept doing what I was doing. Indeed...now those words make sense, and, another guy extended on that by adding that when I get to where I think that it couldn't possibly get any better, it only does. This is where when you hear that this is a journey that we're on...this is what it means.

When I look behind me, I see the growth--sometimes it's in leaps, sometimes it's so small, I feel as though I've lost some ground ###, that in itself is true in certain ####, but determination to get what I saw in those around me had is what kept me coming back, even after those slips. It was instilled upon me that this is, indeed, a life or death thing...and in those who have died--drunk--even, and in ways, especially those alcoholics--they, too, have done their part to help me gain sobriety, because I know, that could so easily be me. At the very first, sheer hatred itself ###, right? In hatred we have resentment, fear, anger, etc.,####, that sheer hatred for booze kept me off of it--but it wasn't enough. What I kept coming back for, was for what I was seeing in others--that little spark in their eyes, the compassion. I was out in the middle of a dark sea, and here was this "life-raft" with hands that kept reaching for me to grasp on to...the willingness to help, even me...who was...willing, to become willing ###...to become willing :wink: ####, they wouldn't give up if I didn't. The biggest entity I was fighting...was myself. More importantly so, though, there was a HP...God as I understand Him, He refused to give up on me.

I've heard some wonder if that craving ever really goes away? For some, they say it does...some say if it doesn't, you're not serious enough...all sorts of answers come from that question. I know, for me, the ability to pick up has been removed, and there is no one else to thank other than God as I understand Him for that, because I am, indeed, powerless over alcohol, and managability?? Hands down, that comes from Somewhere beyond me, too, because I'm always just a hair-trigger away. Came to believe that I could be restored to sanity?? Sanity?? What the heck was that?? Willing to hand my will and my life over? Well...my own best thinking--gets me no place fast. I have a disease...alcoholism. Like with any other disease, we have good days, and we have bad days...my worst day sober is far far better than my best day drinking. The cravings? Yip, there are triggers, but I've gotten to a point where I can project beyond that drink--where basically how fast all of this can unravel and be gone. I think about that one episode of the John Laroquette Show, there's a hostage taking or something at the bus depot, and a guy holds a gun to Larogqette's head with an opened bottle of crisp cold beer placed before him, the guy with the gun says 'drink it or you die'. Laroquette, stares at the bottle, with a gun right at his temple, pondering hard...finally...Laroquette says: you might as well shoot me, because if I drink that, I'll be dead anyway. The guy with the gun is stunned, has no idea what to do next ### course, right at that moment, police bust in, etc.,####, but...that moment. That is the kind of strength that I pray for, the courage...to accept the things we can not change. Accept the unchangable, change the unacceptable--with wisdom.

Enough outta me, kids,
Keep coming back-it works if you work it, and--read a newspaper--the comic section first :wink:
Anne
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Postby Dallas » Wed Jun 20, 2007 4:20 pm

Thanks Anne! Great to hear from you! Glad you're liking the new place! It sounds beautiful up there!

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Step One

Postby Powerless Dee » Tue Jun 26, 2007 9:40 pm

Edited to say: Sorry, I thought this was a more recent post!!!!

You know, I was in AA in the 80's/90's, even pulled together 3 years, but never have I experienced it like today. I honestly don't know how I got those years, because I didn't understand the program at all. It seemed that my sponsors back then didn't sit down and work with me on the steps, didn't give me assignments and make me think. I seem to recall them being available to me "if I needed them and had a problem." I never connected the Steps as a stairway to spirituality, if you will. When I started working with my sponsor this time, immediately, she had me look at Step One like this:

She had me read Chapter 1 (Bill's story) and focus on all the similarities between his story and me. I was to write out all of the ways I related to his story and how alike I was. Good Lord, I had 10 pages of writing. After this, she had me make a formal list of ways that my life is unmanageable because of Alcohol. That was no tiny list either. The last list she had me write was Ways that I Try to Control or Stop My Drinking...this was a much smaller list!

When we met two days later to go over my assignement, it was pretty clear that my life was unmanageable, and I had the documentation to prove it just in case I weakened and thought otherwise. I really like working with her. She is really effective for me.

I really love this forum on the steps...I am at Step 3 and it has been a little difficult. I push-pulled with Step 2, until it smacked me in the head that I definitely was not doing a great job at managing my life! I have 21 days sober today and I, too, am going for the 90 in 90 days.
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Postby Dallas » Tue Jun 26, 2007 10:24 pm

Hey Powerless Dee!!!

It's great to see another message from you!

Congratulations on your 21 Days!!!! That's awesome!

It sounds like you found yourself a great sponsor! Congrats on that, too!

When I first looked at Step 1, for myself... I had thought that it meant that I was only Powerless over alcohol... after I started drinking. :oops: I didn't realize it meant I was powerless (on my own) to stay sober!

I thought that the unmanageability of my life (second half of Step 1) meant that my life was unmanageable while drinking.

Later, I discovered that for me... my life was unmanageable sober.

What it actually was for me was "my life had become unbearable!" (Sober or drinking!) :lol:

When I read this quote from page 52, BB... I said "Gee... that sounds like my life sober!" Its:

"We were having trouble with personal relationships,
we couldn’t control our emotional natures, we were
a prey to misery and depression, we couldn’t make a
living, we had a feeling of uselessness, we were full of
fear, we were unhappy, we couldn’t seem to be of real
help to other people"

All I ever wanted to do -- was to be happy. I began using alcohol as a solution for my already existing problems with personal relationships... and the inability to control my emotional conflicts... and yep, sure enough, I seemed to be a prey to misery and depression (sober)! I couldn't continue making a good living --- because everytime I got my financial life in order, or a good job, or business was going great -- I would do something that would sabatoge it and bring it all down on me. (Even while I was sober! ) :oops:

I didn't even realize all the fears that I had... but, I sure did know that I was unhappy when I wasn't drinking! And, the only person I was sincerely interested in helping was myself... and, I couldn't even do that, very well.

That's when I became fully convinced, that my life was unmanageable (and even unbearable) while sober! :lol:

Now... I'm sober... and I'm happy!!!! Imagine that! Go figure! :lol: And, as long as I continue to follow certain simple actions -- and continue our way of living... my life keeps getting better and better and better and better!!!

Dallas
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