“The steps are our solution. They are our survival kit. They are our defense against addiction, a deadly disease. Our steps are the principles that make our recovery possible.”Basic Text, p. 19
There’s lots to like in Narcotics Anonymous. The meetings, for one, are great. We get to see our friends, hear inspiring stories, share some practical experience, maybe even hook up with our sponsor. The campouts, the conventions, the dances are all wonderful, clean fun in the company of other recovering addicts. But the heart of our recovery program is the Twelve Steps-in fact, they are the program.
We’ve heard it said that we can’t stay clean by osmosis-in other words, we can’t just attend meetings, no matter how many, and expect to breathe recovery in through the pores of our skin. Recovery, as another saying goes, is an inside job. And the tools we use in working that “inside job” are the Twelve Steps. Hearing endlessly about acceptance is one thing; working the First Step for ourselves is very different. Stories about making amends may be inspiring, yet nothing will give us the freedom from remorse that taking the Ninth Step ourselves will give. The same applies to all twelve steps.
There’s much to appreciate about NA, but to get the most from our recovery we must work the Twelve Steps for ourselves.
Just for today: I want everything my personal program has to offer. I will work the steps for myself.