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12 Step Meetings

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The Preamble

The AA Preamble – What it is, History & What it Means

For as long as Alcoholics Anonymous has been around, it can still be a new program for those seeking out sobriety. The fellowship began in the early 1930’s by Bill W. and Dr. Bob S., who were individuals meeting with each other to try and stay sober. During their meetings, they realized that talking about their alcoholism with one another was what helped them stay sober. After developing the program of Alcoholics Anonymous, they moved forward to try and help other alcoholics obtain and maintain sobriety by attending meetings and working the program offered in the fellowship of AA.

The AA Preamble:

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Is Alcoholics Anonymous Religious

Is Alcoholics Anonymous Religious?

Is Alcoholics Anonymous Religious?

While Alcoholics Anonymous does have some aspects that are based on religion, Alcoholics Anonymous as a group is not religious. Many alcoholics believe it is and that is one reason many decide not to go to A.A. meetings. However, Alcoholics Anonymous doesn’t require anyone to believe in a certain religion or in certain religious beliefs. While Alcoholics Anonymous is endorsed by and approved by various religious leaders, the program in itself is not religious. People of all religions and people who aren’t religious at all can be a part of Alcoholics Anonymous.

The Alcoholics Anonymous program is based upon accepting specific spiritually-based values. You are free to take these values and interpret them in any way that you would like. If you don’t agree with some of the values, you don’t have to follow them. It isn’t a specific program that you must follow in a set way.

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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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Do 12 Step Programs Work?

How Effective are 12-Step Programs?

Addiction can be incredibly difficult to overcome. It has psychological, physical, and spiritual components, and every individual experience it differently. Also, there are so many different types of addictions that can shatter the lives of those suffering.

There are a plethora of substances to which one can develop an addiction, from alcohol to organic plants, through narcotics, not to mention nicotine, and even readily available cleaning products and bath salts. Meanwhile, behavioral addictions can turn out to be just as debilitating. People report addictions to gambling, overeating, sex, and compulsive behavior such as hoarding.

Finally, every individual addict has a different genetic and psychological makeup. For some, addiction has a strong genetic component, passed on from generation to generation. For others, it can be a specific traumatic event or process they underwent earlier in life which sparked addiction. Meanwhile, for some, the cause is mostly physical. For them, addiction may be the result of a desire to numb significant physical pain.

Therefore, there is no one size fits all solution to addiction and no magic bullet which can cure every type of dependence.

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Tips on How to be Successful in 12-Step Programs

Tips on How to be Successful in 12-Step Programs

Recovery is hard. There are many pitfalls and days when we feel weak and unable to handle it all. The good news is you are not on your own.

If you are part of a 12-step program, you have a support network to catch you when you fall. One of the great things about a 12-step program is that by helping others, you also make the most of it for yourself.

Here are some tips for making the most of your recovery in a 12-step program, and enjoying yourself in the process!

Get a Home Group

12-step programs are based on a belief in the power of being part of something bigger than us. Humans are social animals and we do not fare well alone. Our recovery and our lives in general, are greatly served by being part of a group that offers mutual support.

In order to succeed in a 12-step programs it is important to regularly attend meetings. But it is best to mostly attend the same group and build bonds with the other members.

Therefore, it is best to find a group that meets two criteria: they are located conveniently to help you attend meetings regularly. Just as importantly, you should feel comfortable with the people in that group. Once you have found that place where you belong, cherish it and hold on to it.

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12 step AA meeting concept

Different Types of AA Meetings – Meeting Types Explained

When you imagine going to AA meetings, you may think of a fairly simple set up. People introducing themselves as alcoholics and telling their stories. Indeed, the official purpose of AA meetings is for members to “share their experience, strength, and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from alcoholism.” Almost all meetings have certain characteristics in common. The serenity prayer starts the proceedings. Some AA material is read and people share. Finally, there is almost always coffee involved!

However, aside from these common characteristics, meetings can differ greatly. Indeed, as the fellowship has grown and evolved, different types of meetings have been pioneered to suit its growing needs. Here are the main types of meetings currently open to attendance.

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What Are 12 Step Meeting Like

What Are 12 Step Meeting Like? See What A Beginner Can Expect

Attending your first meeting can be an unnerving experience for anyone. Very often you will be facing a personal crisis that led you to seek help. You may be wondering: how did I get here? Where did my life wrong? You may be concerned that the people around you are losers or that you may be joining some kind of cult.

On a more pragmatic level, you may be concerned that you will have to talk. In your imagination you probably see yourself forced to share harrowing details of your addiction and hitting rock bottom with a group of strangers. You may feel overwhelmed by the prospect.

You may be concerned that you will run into the people you meet. At this early stage, revealing your addiction to people you know seems like a bit much! Worry not. In the first place, it is statistically unlikely that this will occur, especially if you live in a big city. More importantly, other members are there for the same reason as you. The Anonymous element of the 12-step fellowships is taken very seriously. People in the group, whether you know them or now, will not disclose your identity to outsiders.

The truth is, attending your first meeting will be less stressful than you think. Most members of your recovery group are interested in making you feel comfortable enough to return. They remember the anxieties associated with their first meeting and know that giving you some space to find yourself within the program is essential to your comfort.

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