What Are the 12 Steps to Recovery?


Many people have heard of the 12 steps to recovery. They were created by Alcoholics Anonymous, but they can be used by anyone who is fighting addiction. Many different addiction support groups use these 12 steps, even those that address things such as shopping or over-eating. If one of your loved ones is in drug rehab, they may be working through the 12 steps themselves.

Aside from knowing about rehab centers, it can help to know what these steps are so you can support them.

Step 1: Admit your life has become unmanageable

Recognize that you’re powerless to deal with your addiction on your own. It has taken over your life, and you no longer have any control over anything.

Step 2: Accept that you need God to become sober

Because you have no control over your life, you need to accept that you need God to step in and help you become sober. Without Him, you cannot succeed.

Step 3: Decide to turn over your life to God

Now that you have accepted that you need God to help you, consciously made the decision to turn over your life to Him.

Step 4: Honestly take stock of your life

Take a long, hard, honest look at your life. Where have you done wrong? What mistakes have you made?

Step 5: Admit your wrongs to yourself, God, and others

Fully admit and take responsibility for the mistakes and wrongs you’ve made. Share these wrongs with others and openly admit the mistakes you made.

Step 6: Be ready to have God remove your character defects

Open yourself up to change. Now that you admit your wrongs, be prepared to change those behaviors that led to these mistakes.

Step 7: Ask God to remove your shortcomings

Pray for God to remove these defects and shortcomings so you can change your life for the better.

Step 8: Write down everyone you’ve harmed during your addictions and be ready to make amends

Identify those you’ve hurt during your addiction. Depending on how long you were an addict, this list could be fairly long.

Step 9: Make amends to those you’ve harmed

Note that there is one caveat with this step: if you know reaching out to someone you’ve hurt will only upset them further, don’t do it. This step isn’t to make you feel better—it’s to sincerely apologize to others for the pain you’ve caused. Don’t cause additional pain just to try to make amends.

Step 10: Continue to honestly look at your actions and admit when you’re wrong

Continually self-monitor to determine if you’re doing the right thing. If you’re not, admit it and make changes.

Step 11: Pray to God for direction and the power to follow those directions

Pray for direction from God to continue living a sober life.

Step 12: Put into practice what you’ve learned and carry the message of faith and recovery to other addicts.

The final step is to continue to practice the 12 steps throughout the rest of your life. Addiction doesn’t end just because you’ve completed the program or any substance abuse treatment. It’s something you’ll battle for the rest of your life, so you must continue to work to remain sober. You also need to share the message of sobriety and faith with others you know are battling addiction. Let them know that they can live a clean life if they dedicated themselves to sobriety and to God.

Contact Good Landing Recovery for More Information

If you have a loved one who is struggling with addiction, Good Landing is here to help them reclaim their life. Contact us today to learn more about our programs.