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What is a Sponsor and What to Look for in a 12-Step Sponsor

The official AA literature defines a sponsor as “an alcoholic who has made some progress in the recovery program shares that experience on a continuous, individual basis with another alcoholic who is attempting to attain or maintain sobriety through AA.” Sponsors serve an identical role in other 12-step fellowships.

The official definition significantly underrates the role of the sponsor. If you choose correctly, they will be an integral part of recovery. They will help keep you on the straight and narrow and avoid relapse. It is deeply inadvisable to attempt to work the steps without the guidance and advice of your sponsor on every single step. At first, you can select a temporary sponsor and begin work with them. But ultimately, finding the right permanent sponsor will be a crucial element in determining the success of your recovery. Therefore, it is very important to make the right choice in this regard.

Remember that performing service for the fellowship and its members is an important part of recovery. Therefore, in a very real way, you and your sponsor are helping each other through recovery. The sponsor and sponsee relationship are one of the best examples of the kind of mutual fellowship which helps 12-step participants remain sober in the long-term.

When looking for a sponsor, do not settle for the first member you make a connection with. Look for these important attributes:

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12 Step Serenity Prayer

What is the Serenity Prayer?

What is the Serenity Prayer?

One of the things that help alcoholics and other addicts to recover from their addiction is the Serenity Prayer. If you have an addiction to alcohol or drugs, learning the Serenity Prayer could help you throughout your recovery process.

Defining the Serenity Prayer

The basic part of the Serenity Prayer, that is used the most, is this – “God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference.” The intention of this prayer is to bring faith, certainty, and peace into the hearts and minds of those who need support. When you say the prayer, you are asking your higher power to give you wisdom and guidance to accept what is in your life. You are also asking your higher power for the ability to manifest what is in your best interest.

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The 12 Step Promises

What Are The 12 Step Promises? What They Mean

The 9th Step in the 12-step program is a highly consequential one. It is the step wherein a recovering addict makes amends for the harm they have done to other people in their lives and mainly due to their addiction.

As it says in the Big Book of AA, when working this Step, we: “Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.”

As part of completing this crucial step, individuals make and fulfill a series of promises, which appear in chapter 6 of the big book of AA. Though conceived as part of working a specific step, they often become an essential part of the outlook of recovering addicts.

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12 Step Meeting for Heroin

12 Step Programs for Heroin Addiction Recovery

When it comes to the disease of addiction, finding a 12-step program is crucial to one’s physical, spiritual and emotional health. In many cases, it is a matter of life or death. For struggling addicts, 12-step programs are commonly used in order to help one arrest their addiction because there is no cure for this disease. Although there may not be a cure for drug addiction, recovery is possible within the rooms of 12-step meetings.

12-Step Programs

While there is no cure for drug addiction, it has proven to be a treatable and manageable disorder. 12-step programs are usually non profit organizations that come together in order to help individuals recover from their addiction. While Alcoholics Anonymous was the first 12-step program, many groups began forming after its founding in the 1930s and started addressing other problems, such as substance abuse and behavioral compulsions. Because there are so many different problematic areas, it is important to find a group that can specialize in the addiction that one is suffering from.

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Is Narcotics Anonymous Effective

Is Narcotics Anonymous Effective? Does It Work?

For addicts still struggling in active addiction, searching for the answer to their problems today is never easy. Even after hearing about Narcotics Anonymous, they may still be reluctant to attend meetings, whether it is because they do not have the desire to stop using or they just don’t believe they are effective. The program of Narcotics Anonymous has proven effective for many of its members. The only requirement for those who want to attend meetings is the desire to stop using.

Recovery Rates in NA

Although recovery rates cannot always be measured, the NA program conducted a survey back in 2013 to try and demonstrate the effectiveness of the Narcotics Anonymous program. The success rates were shown in itself after more than 16,000 members participated in the online survey, which was posted for several months to allow all individuals to try and respond.

The responses not only indicated that the program worked, but it also showed the diversity and variety of members in the program. The survey showed that members were attending because they had a desire to stop using – with over 45% of newcomers attending because of influence from another member and only 11% attending because they were court mandated.

Over 30% of the respondents were sober for one to five years, 17% were sober for six to ten years and 19% had over 20 years of sobriety under their belts. Another important part of the survey explained that over 90% of the members reported improvement in their personal relationship and family areas. The answers were in the numbers.

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Drinking in Narcotics Anonymous (NA)

Drinking in Narcotics Anonymous (NA): Is it allowed?

Narcotics Anonymous has so blatantly been explained as a fellowship for those who struggle with substance abuse addiction. It is intended for addicts who are seeking out recovery or the desire to stop using. When the average person hears the words “Narcotics Anonymous,” their first thought is that the individuals who attend these support groups are there to stop using drugs, which leads to the bold and confusing question – are you allowed to drink if you are in Narcotics Anonymous?

Alcohol for Addicts

Many addicts may try to justify what alcohol is to them. In fact, for many addicts in recovery, their drug of choice was never alcohol. Alcohol is generally one of the first and initial substances put into their bodies, which is what usually leads them down the road of addiction.

For most addicts, it doesn’t matter what substance is being used; what matters is that it is mind and mood altering. While some addicts prefer to have a drug of choice, it simply doesn’t matter how much or what kind as long as it takes away from whatever they are feeling at the time or place. To put it generally, most addicts could care less what is being used as long as it gets them high.

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NA Basic Text

The NA Basic Text – What it is and where you can get one

Although Narcotics Anonymous has been around since the 1950’s, the NA program didn’t have any specific literature like Alcoholics Anonymous had until the 1980’s. There were pamphlets used in the 1960’s and 1970’s, but no literature was actually established and published until many years later. While this didn’t sway fellowship members for attending meetings, the literature did help shape the program by following in the steps of the “Big Book of AA” by providing a strong basis for addicts to use when entering the NA program. The “Basic Text,” or the book that explains everything about the NA program, was created in the same way that the Alcoholics Anonymous literature was and follows the same steps and traditions as the “Big Book of AA.”

The “Basic Text” is not just another book about addiction; it is a book about recovery. The literature thoroughly explains what the steps of the program are, how to work them, how to gain the most out of your own experiences in the program and allows other addicts to share their own experiences from their addiction to their recovery process. For those who are still new to the program, the book also helps those individuals identify whether or not they feel that they are an addict and how abstaining from using can impact their lives.

The only requirement for membership to NA is the desire to stop using and that is emphasized throughout the explanation of the program in the beginning chapters. The “Basic Text” encourages those suffering from addiction to work the steps and the program, because those who work the program and continuously attend meetings can recover and do stay clean and sober.

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