No matter what 12 Step group you belong to, or what addiction/dysfunction you're dealing with, it's imperative you use the original 12 Step source material as well as whatever literature your group provides.

The 12 Step Movement continues to grow, addressing all sorts of issues. Unfortunately, many of the new groups, particularly those dealing with dysfunctional behaviors, use just the 12 Steps. They often generate some of their own literature, but they fail to make use of the original source material. As most of you know, the original 12 Step group is Alcoholics Anonymous, and that's where you'll find the original source material as well, in the form of A.A's. Big Book, Alcoholics Anonymous and the book, Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions. I suspect the newer groups feel that since they aren't dealing with alcoholism, these two books don't apply to them. They're wrong. In the Big Book, you will find the Foreword to the First Edition, which uses the word 'recovered' at least nine times. That does away with the myth that the Program requires us to claim never-ending recovery. The first 164 pages of the Big Book contain the 'guts' of any and all 12 Step Programs. Yes, the language is a bit arcane, not surprising since it was written in 1939. Yes, there's somewhat of a 'religious' tone, although they worked hard to emphasize the much more open 'spiritual.' Yes, they use the then proper generic 'he, him, etc,' instead of gender-neutral language. It doesn't matter ? just put your editor's hat away and read, substituting your addiction/dysfunction for the words dealing with alcoholism. You will find many of the mysteries of 12 Stepping cleared up.

The Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions is the textbook for the Steps and Traditions. Here you will find details that often get left out of discussions, either in meetings or around the kitchen table.

For example, did you know there is a definition of humility in Step 7? Or have you really thought about the whole implications of Step 9, including what to do about an amend if it would harm someone else? Or that Step 10 makes it clear you're not to focus only on problems? It's all there, and much more.

With these two books in hand, you will be in a position to really know how to work the Steps. You will be able to get your own recovery on solid ground more quickly. You'll find too, that you will be able to be of more help to others because you will have a deeper understanding of the Program.

Do yourself a favor and order both of these books ASAP! You can order through Amazon or get them at any A.A. office or club, which you can usually find in the white pages of your telephone book.

I have a drum to beat. It's this:
No matter what 12 Step group you belong to, or what addiction/dysfunction you're dealing with, it's imperative you use the original 12 Step source material as well as whatever literature your group provides. The 12 Step Movement continues to grow, addressing all sorts of issues. Unfortunately, many of the new groups, particularly those dealing with dysfunctional behaviors, use just the 12 Steps. They often generate some of their own literature, but they fail to make use of the original source material. As most of you know, the original 12 Step group is Alcoholics Anonymous, and that's where you'll find the original source material as well, in the form of A.A's. Big Book, Alcoholics Anonymous and the book, Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions. I suspect the newer groups feel that since they aren't dealing with alcoholism, these two books don't apply to them. They're wrong. In the Big Book, you will find the Foreword to the First Edition, which uses the word 'recovered' at least nine times. That does away with the myth that the Program requires us to claim never-ending recovery. The first 164 pages of the Big Book contain the 'guts' of any and all 12 Step Programs. Yes, the language is a bit arcane, not surprising since it was written in 1939. Yes, there's somewhat of a 'religious' tone, although they worked hard to emphasize the much more open 'spiritual.' Yes, they use the then proper generic 'he, him, etc,' instead of gender-neutral language. It doesn't matter ? just put your editor's hat away and read, substituting your addiction/dysfunction for the words dealing with alcoholism. You will find many of the mysteries of 12 Stepping cleared up.

The Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions is the textbook for the Steps and Traditions. Here you will find details that often get left out of discussions, either in meetings or around the kitchen table.

For example, did you know there is a definition of humility in Step 7? Or have you really thought about the whole implications of Step 9, including what to do about an amend if it would harm someone else? Or that Step 10 makes it clear you're not to focus only on problems? It's all there, and much more.

With these two books in hand, you will be in a position to really know how to work the Steps. You will be able to get your own recovery on solid ground more quickly. You'll find too, that you will be able to be of more help to others because you will have a deeper understanding of the Program.

Do yourself a favor and order both of these books ASAP! You can order through Amazon or get them at any A.A. office or club, which you can usually find in the white pages of your telephone book.

Author's Bio: 

Anne Wayman is the author of Powerfully Recovered! the book explodes the myths of perpetual powerlessness and never-ending recovery. You can contact her and/or purchase the book, or down load the first 25 pages for FREE, at her site, www.powerfullyrecovered.com and through any bookstore and most online bookstores.