Some rewards to the 12 Steps

The 12 Steps are the AA program of recovery from alcoholism.

Some rewards to the 12 Steps

Postby Dan2000 » Sun Jul 31, 2016 8:30 pm

Hi All

These can be, some of the Rewards to the 12 Steps.

You may add to this list if you like, as I know there are an abundance of rewards in practicing the 12 Steps.

1. Hope instead of desperation

2. Faith instead of despair

3. Courage instead of fear

4. Peace of mind instead of confusion

5. Self respect instead of self contempt

6. Self confidence instead of helplessness

7. The respect of others instead of pity and contempt

8. A clean conscience instead of a sense of guilt

9. Real friendship instead of loneliness

10. A clean pattern of life instead of a purposeless existence

11. The love and understanding of our families instead of their doubts and fear

12. The freedom of a happy life instead of the bondage of an alcoholic obsession.
Remember in all we do, it's Progress,not perfection.
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Re: Some rewards to the 12 Steps

Postby Spirit Flower » Mon Aug 01, 2016 4:22 am

Conscious contact with a power greater than your self.
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Re: Some rewards to the 12 Steps

Postby Larryp713 » Mon Aug 01, 2016 8:17 am

The humility to know that our great blessings are gifts from our higher power.
Trudging the Road of Happy Destiny!!!
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Re: Some rewards to the 12 Steps

Postby ezdzit247 » Mon Aug 01, 2016 10:33 am

Thanks for the topic, Dan. Great topic!

I first discovered this Erich Fromm quote when I read it printed in Scott Peck's "The Road Less Traveled" during my first year of sobriety:

“....Our capacity to choose changes constantly with our practice of life. The longer we continue to make the wrong decisions, the more our heart hardens; the more often we make the right decision, the more our heart softens - or better perhaps, comes alive......Each step in life which increases my self-confidence, my integrity, my courage, my conviction also increases my capacity to choose the desirable alternative, until eventually it becomes more difficult for me to choose the undesirable rather than the desirable action. On the other hand, each act of surrender and cowardice weakens me, opens the path for more acts of surrender, and eventually freedom is lost. Between the extreme of when I can no longer do a wrong act and the extreme when I have lost my freedom to right action, there are innumerable degrees of freedom of choice."


My ESH is that I began working AA's Steps without any idea of what engaging in this process would do for me. In fact, I didn't even know what a "process" was or that by working the Steps, I was "engaging in a process". I began at about 3 months of sobriety or about the time my "brain fog" (thanks again for phrase, Star) began to lift because working the Steps was recommended in the BB and AA members in meetings. They looked easy, simple and straight forward enough so I just dove in and did them without any expectation of what I would get from doing them. I found, among other rewards, what Fromm described in the above quote, that each Step I took increased "my self-confidence, my integrity, my courage, my conviction"...and also increased "my capacity to choose the desirable alternative" and "innumerable degrees of freedom of choice". Later, I noticed something else about working the Steps. I found out that the more I worked them and practiced the principles in all my affairs, the more the Steps seemed to take on a life of their own and work me!
“To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children...to leave the world a better place...to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.” -- Ralph Waldo Emerson
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Re: Some rewards to the 12 Steps

Postby Karl R » Mon Aug 01, 2016 1:26 pm

Most mornings I can find my car. :-)

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Re: Some rewards to the 12 Steps

Postby ezdzit247 » Mon Aug 01, 2016 1:43 pm

Karl R wrote:Most mornings I can find my car. :-)

K.


:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
“To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children...to leave the world a better place...to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.” -- Ralph Waldo Emerson
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Re: Some rewards to the 12 Steps

Postby Dan2000 » Mon Aug 01, 2016 8:27 pm

ezdzit247 wrote:Thanks for the topic, Dan. Great topic!

I first discovered this Erich Fromm quote when I read it printed in Scott Peck's "The Road Less Traveled" during my first year of sobriety:

“....Our capacity to choose changes constantly with our practice of life. The longer we continue to make the wrong decisions, the more our heart hardens; the more often we make the right decision, the more our heart softens - or better perhaps, comes alive......Each step in life which increases my self-confidence, my integrity, my courage, my conviction also increases my capacity to choose the desirable alternative, until eventually it becomes more difficult for me to choose the undesirable rather than the desirable action. On the other hand, each act of surrender and cowardice weakens me, opens the path for more acts of surrender, and eventually freedom is lost. Between the extreme of when I can no longer do a wrong act and the extreme when I have lost my freedom to right action, there are innumerable degrees of freedom of choice."


My ESH is that I began working AA's Steps without any idea of what engaging in this process would do for me. In fact, I didn't even know what a "process" was or that by working the Steps, I was "engaging in a process". I began at about 3 months of sobriety or about the time my "brain fog" (thanks again for phrase, Star) began to lift because working the Steps was recommended in the BB and AA members in meetings. They looked easy, simple and straight forward enough so I just dove in and did them without any expectation of what I would get from doing them. I found, among other rewards, what Fromm described in the above quote, that each Step I took increased "my self-confidence, my integrity, my courage, my conviction"...and also increased "my capacity to choose the desirable alternative" and "innumerable degrees of freedom of choice". Later, I noticed something else about working the Steps. I found out that the more I worked them and practiced the principles in all my affairs, the more the Steps seemed to take on a life of their own and work me!


Hi EZ

What a blast from the past, I too, read the book, The road less traveled either the first or second year I did the twelve steps another good book was The Prophet...
Seemed back when I first got sober, people would mention good things to read and passed out papers that was inspirational and such, you could take it or leave it, what material interested you or not. I still pass out "Acceptance" by Vincent P. Collins (24 page booklet sold by Hazelton/Betty Ford Foundation, 95 cents) it's not AA, but it's an excellent read, I still read it every couple of months. I like redundantcy when I practice my program. Even if it's not AA, if it helps, then why not?
I began the steps when I was about 6 months into sobriety, If I remember correctly, my "Brain Fog" did not completely lift for awhile with me, even though I had a spiritual awakening soon after starting the steps. I've been through the steps several times, I know once can be enough, however in and around the Boston area, we have a program called AWOL, which means A Way Of Life or Another Way of Living, it is an intense 21-25 week program, we use the 12 and 12 as a guide or some use The little Red Book (12 step book by Hazelton) which are both then used with another guide called the Novalco method.There are "keys" in each book, that are pointed out and discussed by raising your hand. (Example, key #8 in step 3 reads: Treatment. We stop playing God, We surrender our self-centeredness to him. We relax.) after a month of enrollment, the group gets closed to additional members and it becomes more intimate, so to speak, as you bind with the same people that will be in the group til the end. Generally you get more of a trust or bonding thing going on, if your with the same group of people for that long of a period of time. (If need be, the group would vote on letting a new member in, if we were still on the first step, after that it would be closed)
I tend to like doing the steps over and over again, like I said, I like reduntancy. I believe things change in our lives, each of us have different levels of sobriety as well as spirituality. I also like the AWOL fellowship as it's much like the AA fellowship. I have chaired some of these AWOLs. The AWOL groups start after Labor Day in September, and usually go on til April or May (depending on snow cancellations) then we get the summer off.
Remember in all we do, it's Progress,not perfection.
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Re: Some rewards to the 12 Steps

Postby ezdzit247 » Tue Aug 02, 2016 2:38 pm

Dan2000 wrote: What a blast from the past, I too, read the book, The road less traveled either the first or second year I did the twelve steps another good book was The Prophet...
Seemed back when I first got sober, people would mention good things to read and passed out papers that was inspirational and such, you could take it or leave it, what material interested you or not. I still pass out "Acceptance" by Vincent P. Collins (24 page booklet sold by Hazelton/Betty Ford Foundation, 95 cents) it's not AA, but it's an excellent read, I still read it every couple of months. I like redundantcy when I practice my program. Even if it's not AA, if it helps, then why not? ....


I agree. Even if it's not AA, if it helps, then why not? Where and when I got sober in southern California, AA members passed around lots of good books, articles, inspirational poems, etc, talked about them in meetings and that was very helpful to my sobriety. Road Less Traveled was one of those books. AA members also used the little black book, Twenty Four Hours a Day, from Hazeldan because that was the only daily inspiration book available at the time. I still read a lot but where I go to meetings now is in a very small northern California town and reading does not seem to be big part of the local culture. Unfortunately, this attitude is reflected in local AA members at meetings. There are still members who read books and pass them around, but we are a minority, and all of us are "outsiders", immigrants from larger urban areas of California.... :lol:

I love the Prophet! Every line on every page spoke to me, taught me something, helped shape my mental construct of reality in sobriety. Even after all these years, my brain will still dig up the one about fear of thirst when my cup is full is the thirst that is unquenchable and serve it to me when I get into a "mood" about something not going my way or not getting something I really really wanted. Never fails to remind me that my "cup runneth over" and brings me back to an attitude of gratitude.....
“To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children...to leave the world a better place...to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.” -- Ralph Waldo Emerson
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