The First Step: Coming to yourself

July 25, 2006

From the AA Big Book:

1. We admitted we were powerless over alcohol — that our lives had become unmanageable.

From Heart t’ Heart:

1. We admitted we were powerless over compulsive/addictive behaviors — that our lives had become unmanageable. Admitted that we of ourselves are powerless, nothing without God. (Mosiah 4:5; Alma 26:12)

From the LDS Addiction Recovery Manual:

1. Admit that you, of yourself, are powerless to overcome your addictions and that your life has become unmanageable.

The First Step is, to some degree, about admitting that you just might have a problem.  With addiction comes denial (and a host of other problems).  You recognize that you are making wrong choices (if you don’t recognize them as wrong choices, you have problems more serious than addiction).  You also recognize that you haven’t quit them.

Maybe its because you’ve never really taken the time to focus on getting rid of them.  Maybe its because you have an important calling or position and it would hurt too many other people if your problem became public.  Maybe you are just embarassed.  In any case, you know that you have a bad habit, but you believe that you could quit it whenever.  It’s just a matter of applying willpower, after all.

If you are interested in checking yourself for warning signs of actual addiction, as opposed to simply being the bearer of garden-variety bad habits, here are a couple of tests to take that might give you an indication.  I should say that the first test I took was to find out if I might be an alcoholic.  I have never had any alcohol (or rather I haven’t since sipping a little warm beer that my dad gave me once), but I was surprised at how much like an alcoholic I was acting.  Here you go…

Am I an addict?  from Narcotics Anonymous

Am I an addict? from The Recovery Zone

Are you a compulsive eater? from Overeaters Anonymous

A useful tool for self-assessment from Sex Addicts Anonymous

20 questions from Gamblers Anonymous

These are just a few of the many such quick quizzes out there.  They are sometimes useful.  If nothing else, they can help people to realize that their problems are greater than they would like to admit.  Denial and dishonesty are among the greatest enemies of the addict.  More on that tomorrow.


4 Responses to “The First Step: Coming to yourself”

  1. Glad to see you still posting.

  2. John Anon Says:

    probably not as glad as I am 😉

  3. My real interest in twelve step programs is in what they teach about God and prayer. I still haven’t gotten all the way there, but that is where I’m headed on my blog, and the core interest for me.

  4. John Anon Says:

    Cool. That’s good stuff.

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