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In this context, it means that someone feels like they don’t have any control over their life. They may feel like they have little choice but to continue using drugs or alcohol because they lack alternatives. The main criterion for a successful First Step is a person’s acceptance that they do, indeed, have the disease of addiction.

Unfortunately, there was an entire self-help industry out there waiting to enable us in denial. Their sales pitch is that 12 Step programs, whether AA or NA, make us weak by brainwashing us into thinking we are powerless. The power is in us, they say, and in the books and programs they sell. As addiction begins to overtake your life, you lie to yourself about what is happening. Unfortunately, many cannot shatter that illusion until they hit rock bottom and are confronted with undeniable proof that everything is not okay.

Step 1 of AA: Why It Is So Important

So is, “How is taking a drink to calm down different from taking medication to calm down?” If you have to justify your use of the substance, you may have a problem. Our nationally accredited substance abuse detoxification & treatment center is one of the most highly respected programs in the country. AA meetings are helpful for many individuals in recovery from alcohol addiction. These meetings may even be part of the programming at inpatient rehab or outpatient programs you attend. Services offered by your treatment team can work alongside the 12 Steps to help you find your path to recovery.

how am i powerless over alcohol

Let’s think about this definition as it relates to alcoholism/addiction. The FHE Health team is committed to providing accurate information that adheres to the highest standards of writing. This is part of our ongoing commitment to ensure FHE Health is trusted as a leader in mental health and addiction care. You might be avoiding taking the first step toward recovery due to myths and misunderstandings surrounding AA and its steps. Here are some of the most common myths debunked or explained. Step 1 of AA acknowledges the need for members to hit rock bottom to understand alcohol addiction’s destructive nature.

How Does Step 1 Align With the Disease Model of Addiction?

Feeling powerless makes us believe that there is nothing we can do. We don’t have the power over the obsession to drink, nor do we have the power to control how much we drink once we start. What we can do is turn to a Power greater than ourselves for help. We let this Power do what we are unable to do for ourselves. I’ll just have one or maybe two; I can drink just one more day then stop, I’ll just smoke marijuana that’s not that bad, or I’ll only drink on the weekends, etc. How many times have we had these kinds of thoughts and believed them?

  • Remember, recovery is not being weak or less of a person.
  • Denying there is a problem only allows the person to continue their destructive behavior.
  • Today with the understanding of powerless, our number one priority is our relationship with our creator and how we can best serve.
  • I leaned on alcohol for years, then replaced booze with a drug called love.
  • Going to the hospital was what finally got my attention–I ended up in the dual diagnosis unit of a state hospital in Richmond, Indiana.

If you want to reap the positive benefits of AA, you must accept your alcoholic abuse disorder and its consequences. Your sobriety will remain unpredictable, and you won’t find any enduring strength until you can admit defeat. Step 1 of AA can be one of the most difficult on your Boston Sober Homes journey to sobriety. You must first admit powerless over alcohol and be honest with yourself about the situation. In the long term, maintaining abstinence from alcohol and drugs requires a lot of effort. The most effective way to stay sober is by using the tools of recovery.

Of Treatment.*

This belief is what gives them hope and helps them stay sober. When ordinary people think of the priorities of life, their thoughts naturally turn to family, home, career, and the like. Not so with the alcoholic or addict trapped in the cycle of addiction. The particulars vary from person to person, but each of us went from functional drinkers and users to compulsive drunks and junkies. We developed laser-like focus, with all our thought patterns, belief systems, emotions, and actions converging on a singular purpose. Whether we admitted it or not, everybody and everything else assumed secondary importance.

Recovery is also about taking back control of your life. The “Serenity Prayer” said in 12 Step meetings has received widespread media attention ever since Covid-19 entered the American https://trading-market.org/boston-sober-homes/ consciousness. Written by theologian Karl Niebuhr in the early 1930’s, the Serenity Prayer was adopted and adapted by Alcoholics Anonymous shortly after it published the Big Book.

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