Wednesday, 15 August 2012

August 15 2012 | AA 12 Steps In Action | Step 8 Amends And Willing Alcoholics Anonymous

August 15 2012 | AA 12 Steps In Action | Step 8 Amends And Willing Alcoholics Anonymous Today's AA daily reflection: "we did hurt people…" And sometimes we knew we were hurting people, because for whatever reason we felt hurt by them. We hurt people, by including them in our lives when we were out of control and we were not able to stop drinking. We hurt people by isolating and excluding them, often because life was a horror show…

Video For Today:

Living In The Moment Emotional And Spiritual

The reason for writing the amends list in step eight is to reveal the hurt inflicted on ourselves by us, the hurt inflicted on others by our including or excluding behaviour. A wounded person full of self prejudice, the alcoholic full of shame and guilt needs to recognise that looking in the mirror revealed self-hate, and a desire to cover up. Puncturing our ego in recovery enables the growth of self worth based on recovery and what we do next, sober one day at a time…

Even in recovery, we can feel the burn of old times, then we start behaving like we did in olden days when we feel "less than others around us" and ego is the eggshell cover over our feelings about our worthiness to be a part of life. I had to say to myself that I am a learner every single day, learning and then sharing experience strength and hope of what works today and also where I fucked up badly as old feelings are felt again, romance! Romance these days is interesting, it is never like the romantic novel, it is the revelation of unconditional love. We all learn how to love without conditions if we are fortunate and evoke the absolute freedom of choice with all those around us…

Olympians 2012! Even medal winners may feel the extremes after the events are over. Back to normal life? Having to retire having peaked and still many decades to live. Driven by ambition, driven to the absolute limit. Coming down off this chemical high and the extreme emotions that follow… Those who know, it can be as devastating as PTSD, "post traumatic stress disorder" and the dangers are exactly the same for anyone dependent on people, places and things. Codependency and dependency, it is all biochemistry as well as emotional and spiritual living in every moment of now…

2004 to 2012 all about the steps of Alcoholics Anonymous…

My first sober day was June 1, 2004. I made a decision to go to a meeting of Alcoholics Anonymous at Eaton square, the nine o'clock in the evening. I have been sitting in Hyde Park Corner looking at the war memorials to the dead. I saw places named on the walls commemorating the battles of world wars. And I saw where my father had served during World War II. He was hoping to come back to the land fit for heroes, and he came back to a land full of need and want. All his early life experiences have been harsh and formed his outlook. Very intelligent, my father was often frustrated by the events around him and he knew better than those he saw in government. He was also a bit of a mad scientist and also good at seeing commercial opportunities. But he was an alcoholic as well and he taught me how to drink and be like him. If he had known what I knew sitting there in Hyde Park, I hope he would have taken the opportunity to go to a meeting as I did. That last moment, to go to a meeting or to go and get a drink, I just feel I was lucky enough to accept and make a choice to go to fellowship…

Over the years I have learned all about the twelve steps and all about the twelve traditions. But no amount of book learning is worth anything if I cannot put the principles of the steps and traditions into practice. And being a practitioner of the principles is what we do one day at a time. And one day at a time practising these principles in all my affairs has helped me realise where life balance is possible, and where life balance is impossible. And practising these principles means life emotionally and spiritually keeps on working and I keep making progress one day at a time.

When I get too big for my boots, thinking I know all the answers for myself and other people, I am not putting the principles into practice. When I realise I am a human being with my own point of view and need to value the views of others, all the principles of the fellowship work in real life. And it is going to be a lifetime journey, with freedom to be me because I realise these principles of living make me equal with everyone around me and I can ask the help from anyone anywhere appropriately. Asking for help does not mean I will get it, and it may be difficult to find the help I need. If I do not ask the help, I will not get it.

With over eight years sobriety, the good news is I have been around for another eight years, rather than the alternative of a drink induced death. The living death before recovery and a new life in recovery has been difficult. Healthy and learning life for a couple of years and then stricken by various other chronic conditions, but I have been alive to get them and to cope with them. Type 1 diabetes came out of nowhere, and then the diagnosis of chronic clinical depression. Both chronic ailments, both needing to be lived like recovery, one day at a time. Oddly I am grateful for the very simple and yet complicated life I have today.

I have learned what it is to love another without conditions, to understand and be loved back by other people. I have also learned that many who might feel they love me do not realise it is conditional rather than without conditions. And that is part of living, unconditionally and without expectations, makes the world go round much more easily.

Needs met, emotionally and spiritually is a beautiful outlook, and when we stop wanting something we really don't understand: "serenity in the moment of now" and needs do change as people, places and things change. The good news in recovery is we can adapt far faster and more smoothly if we go with how life is rather than how we want or have expected life to go. Life is the journey, from the high to rock bottom and everything in between and it can happen over and over again, because this is life today…

AA Daily Reflections ~ "August 15: Didn't we hurt anybody? Some of us, though, tripped over a very different snag. We clung to the claim that when drinking we never hurt anybody but ourselves. [12&12]

This Step seemed so simple. I identified several people whom I had harmed, but they were no longer available. Still, I was uneasy about the Step and avoided conversations dealing with it. In time I learned to investigate those Steps and areas of my life which made me uncomfortable. My search revealed my parents, who had been deeply hurt by my isolation from them; my employer, who worried about my absences, my memory lapses, my temper; and the friends I had shunned, without explanation. As I faced the reality of the harm I had done, Step Eight took on a new meaning. I am no longer uncomfortable and I feel clean and light."


DonInLondon 2005 2011

How am I feeling? Good in myself, but... discombobulated by last night. Why? One or two were in judgmental mode in my fellowship meeting, and held opinions about their worthiness to be alcoholics with dire experiences. What can I do? I can say I am an alcoholic in recovery. A rock bottom is a rock bottom and anyone who finds sobriety, emotionally and spiritually is okay with me...

A desire to stop drinking is the only requirement. When I hear people judge others as "non alcoholics" I do shudder inside. We are non professional, and there are no rules, laws or regulations in AA fellowship. It is hard enough to step into a meeting to find out what we are. The burden of proof is always with the individual and if we say we are in, we are in AA fellowship...

August 2008 ~ 2010

Step 8, Made a list of all persons we had harmed and became willing to make amends to them all... Harm we did, not harm they did, willingness for me became more obvious in the amends I felt unable to make, and then become willing. Each amends as potent as any other as we learn to cherish always in the moment of now...

Amends we make just for today... Sometimes we may feel the amends is done, in my experience our living amend is constant in the way we change our attitude and behaviour as encounter old and new situations, as we have made the list of people harmed and become willing, our daily endeavours show us and others the way...


We learn as we can just one day at a time…


AA Official Online Site: Daily Reflections

AA Official Online Site: Big Book And Twelve And Twelve


Step 8 "Step Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all." "n other words, who have you harmed? You will recall from our discussion of Steps 4 and 5, that a preliminary list of persons we had harmed is generated there. The list will now be refined into a personal amendment plan, which is the product of Step 8."Although this step requires plenty of work, there is nothing frightening in it. Amends are not actually made in Step 8. Instead, we plan for the making of amends in Step 9, which follows. Harm is: injury, hurt, damage, misfortune, grief, pain, sorrow, evil, wrong or wickedness. Have we brought about any of these in the lives of others? The Big Book and the 12&12 also are quite specific about harm." BB Bunch

August Video Reading Step Eight Into Action Link:

Step Eight Reading

“How It Works” Reading Video Link:

Chapter Five How Fellowship And Recovery Works

“Into Action" Reading Video Link:

Chapter Six Into Action


I do not speak for Alcoholics Anonymous I speak for myself. Alcoholics Anonymous is a fellowship of unique and authentic people who speak for themselves where they will to share experience, strength and hope about recovery on a daily basis. Anonymity affords sanctuary to find how to live sober and be open, honest and willing to learn life day by day. For me "truth," "love" and "wisdom" offer the best spiritual experience by living reality today. Into the fabric of recovery from alcoholism are woven the Twelve Steps and the Traditions: steps to be open, honest and willing to learn, traditions to live unity, service and recovery.


Spiritual principles ~ Forgiveness Acceptance Surrender Faith Open-mindedness Honesty Willingness Moral-inventory Amends Humility Persistence Spiritual-growth Service


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