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12 steps

Twelve steps form the core of a personal recovery program. They are presented as suggestions and are based on the experiences of AA's earliest members. The steps describe the approach to things that AA's first members believed primarily aided their efforts toward a sober lifestyle.


Acceptance of the Twelve Steps is optional. However, experience shows that AA members who honestly try to follow those suggestions and apply them to their daily lives seem to get more out of AA than those who follow them irregularly.

It has been said that it is impossible to follow verbatim everything that is said in the steps. Although this is true, many AA members still believe that, for practical reasons, they necessarily need the steps to stay on their feet, because the twelve steps represent a view of life that has been completely foreign to most alcoholics.

Blue Skies

The Twelve Steps, first published in Alcoholics Anonymous based on experiences gained in AA
in the book, are as follows:

  1. We admitted that we were powerless over alcohol and that our lives had become out of control.

  2. We learn to believe that some power greater than ourselves can bring us back to our senses.

  3. We decided to surrender our will and our lives to God - as we understood him.

  4. We conducted a thorough and fearless moral introspection.

  5. We admitted the exact nature of our shortcomings to God, to ourselves, and to someone else.

  6. We were fully prepared to let God remove all these defects in our character.

  7. We humbly asked him to remove our infirmities.

  8. We made a list of all the people we hurt and wanted to make amends to all of them.

  9. We personally made amends to these people whenever possible, unless in doing so we harmed them or others.

  10. We continued to introspect and when we were wrong, we admitted it immediately.

  11. Through prayer and meditation, we seek to develop our conscious connection with God as we understood him, praying only for knowledge of his will for our relationship and the strength to carry it out.

  12. After experiencing a spiritual awakening as a result of these steps, we tried to convey this message to alcoholics and implement these principles in all our activities.

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