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The Power in the First Step: Accepting Powerlessness For Recovery

When a person realizes they are powerless over alcohol, they have taken the first step to live a healthy, sober life. Many people with an addiction to alcohol feel guilt, low self-esteem, and shame. When a person admits that alcohol is affecting his or her life, they can start recovery.

“Many pursue it into the gates of insanity or death.” (Big Book, Page

I finally understood what an alcoholic and addict really is. I saw that I was worse than I knew, but understanding the problem helped me accept the solution. At one time, our number one priority was to stay sober. Today with the understanding of powerless, our number one priority is our relationship with our creator and how we can best serve. We now know that the basis of such powerlessness lies in a person’s addicted brain far more than in their character or circumstances.

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When you admit that you are powerless to addiction, you are empowered to reach out for support. By admitting that your life has become unmanageable, you open yourself up to letting go of control and gain acceptance of yourself. The founders of AA understood that for alcoholics to truly take ownership of their recovery, they needed to accept that their life had become unmanageable due to their addiction. Excessive alcohol use not only leads to more than 140,000 deaths nationally each year but can also cause lives to spin out of control.

How Long Does It Take to Complete the 12 Steps?

These groups use similar principles, but each has its own unique approach. Of course, there are many other books and resources available on the 12-step program, and what works best for one person may not work for another. It can be helpful to explore different options and find what resonates with you personally.

powerless over alcohol

We offer peer-led recovery programs that are rooted in the 12-Step program of recovery from Alcoholics Anonymous. We believe that these steps are the foundation for building a healthy, sober life, and we have seen the good fruit of these teachings in the lives of our patients. To learn more about our vision and treatments, please contact us today. For many addicted to alcohol and drugs, it’s difficult to admit the way addiction has made their lives unmanageable. The self-awareness that comes with realizing how bad things are and how damaging the substance abuse has been is how you can start to desire a better future for yourself. Acknowledging powerlessness over alcohol and drugs can be liberating for many people.

What Are the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous?

Your counselor can help you learn strategies to stop drinking and can be one of the people you reach out to when you are struggling. Sometimes alcoholics keep their desire to drink secret because they’re ashamed or think that deciding to quit drinking means they aren’t supposed to be tempted. By admitting to at least one other person that you’re having a hard time with your sobriety in Step 1 of AA, you acknowledge that you are having difficulty maintaining control in regards to alcohol. Alcoholics Anonymous Step 1 is the beginning of a 12-step program to get and stay sober. Taking this first step and admitting you are struggling with alcohol misuse can be difficult, but it is the foundation of all positive change according to AA.

  • Remember, the 1st step AA is not the end but the beginning of a brighter future.
  • The mental obsession and physical cravings increase after the first drink, causing the person to drink more.
  • When the early recovering alcoholics met, their wives began congregating around the kitchen table wondering how the Twelve Steps might heal some of their wounds and often resentful behavior.
  • When you lay it all out, you will see that you did not have control in those moments.

Here’s what author and interventionist Jeff Jay has to say about Step One and being powerless:

  • If you can acknowledge and accept those two things—that you have an addiction and it’s causing problems—then you have completed the First Step of Alcoholics Anonymous, and you have officially begun your recovery.
  • It may include tasks such as speaking at an AA meeting, telling someone if you feel like drinking, working with a counselor, getting an AA sponsor, and/or telling someone if you do drink.
  • The Twelve Steps and the fellowship of AA were founded and designed around those principles.

When you’re humble, you’re cognizant of the fact that you’re not a major part of the bigger picture. Humility in daily practice means never seeing yourself as more important than you are. Each step centers around a phrase, many of them invoking the ideas of God or a “higher power” who guides the recovering addict in various facets of their Top 5 Advantages of Staying in a Sober Living House journey into sobriety. With the publication of the organization’s principles and writings, word began to spread about its success. Once AA managed to help 500 people achieve sobriety, it attracted a more national audience. By 1950, the organization could boast of having helped 500,000 people overcome their dependence on alcohol.






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