GeoffS wrote:what is the "best/right" time frame for an alcoholic today to complete the 12 steps. When I say complete, I mean go through and do them with a sponsor, for the first time.
I agree with Dallas when he cited the quote "If you have decided you want what we have and are willing to go to any length to get it-then you are ready to take certain steps."
- and also being "out of the fog".
For me, the BIG BIG BIG
word in there is "willing"
To me, it wouldn't make any sense to want what we have and to be HONESTLY willing to go to any lengths to get it - and not get started as soon as possible. But maybe there's a little more - look at how Dallas said this:
Dallas wrote:"If I was bleeding to death... how soon would I want to get sown up?" And, "If I was drowning... how long would I want to wait... to have me pulled out of the water?
Now look at what it says in the book:
"We, in our turn, sought the same escape with all the desperation of drowning men."
So I believe one of the things in a protege' that we can "sense" when he is willing and ready is desperation
. For me, that's an ingredient that made the whole idea of 12 steps more meaningful. I knew that I was going to drink again, and that would mean to die, so I was desperate just like the book says.
But maybe, just maybe
, there's just another thing, that if its there I can be sure the protege' is ready, willing, desperate enough, and able.
"When, therefore, we were approached by those in whom the problem had been solved, there was nothing left for us but to pick up the simple kit of spiritual tools laid at our feet."
That quote pretty much says in "there was nothing left for us" that I've hit THE bottom
. It doesn't matter where that bottom is located, high or low or in-between, it's just a question that my heart answers for me. It was when I knew I had no other choices left but to "be done" with alcohol. It's when I arrived at that "jumping off place"
where I knew "lonliness such as few do"
But that passage also refers to us, the "menotrs" or "sponsors" - the men and women who have had a spiritual awakening and now have a message to carry - that there is a solution to the problem of alcoholism.
Now this is just my interpretation, and might not work for anyone else. When I see not only willingness in a protege', but also sense the desperation of hitting bottom and having no where to turn, then that's a pretty good time to get started in the steps. I also think this is when the sponsor and protege' will be best able to get all the way through the steps in one shot - you know - very little procrastinating at step 4, or no vacations after step five, and no waiting 'til the cows come home before getting started with amends.