The Power of Acceptance: Embracing Change for a Brighter Future
Last month we talked about Step One of the 12 Step program. Step One of the Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) program and other twelve step fellowships is about admitting defeat, accepting that you are an alcoholic, or other form of addict. Step One has us admit that our lives had become unmanageable. Our best efforts at navigating through life had failed.
All of our great ideas and efforts to manipulate and control outcomes had failed. We were completely out of sync with life. The joy and harmony that our Creator wants for us had long since fled, if it was ever there for us at all.
The first step to recovery is admitting, and accepting, that there is a problem. All of our personal power, through which we tried to control our lives, and the lives of those around us, was an impotent power.
With that acceptance of and surrender to the problem, we are now ready to move on to Step Two.
Step Two has us shift our focus away from the shambles of our lives. We know through Step One, that we are powerless, but we cannot stay in our personally managed wreck of a life. If we stay in the chaos of addictive thinking and acting, we will relapse into the addictive behavior again.
Step Two introduces the concept of the new power than can restore us to sanity and right living.In Step One we admitted that we are out of balance, powerless, out of control, directionless, defeated, broken, dying. In Step Two we start to hear about a power that will restore us to sanity. Restore us to balance, to harmony, to life. What is this power? Where do we find this power?
How do we trust this power? It seems an almost impossible task. Trying to understand Step One and Two in the vacuum of our self created exile is indeed impossible. Addiction is a disease that cannot be treated in isolation.
Alcoholics Anonymous is called a “We” program. “We” can do what “I” can’t.
Step Two can be broken down into three parts: We came. We came to. We came to believe.
The first and most important thing a newcomer to recovery can do is show up to meetings or a good rehab program, and listen. Sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly, the fog starts to lift, and the newcomer begins to hear a message.
The message of hope that is shared by people working a program of recovery can be surprising and seems to make no sense, and that's OK. With the admission of defeat, sometimes for the first time in the alcoholic’s life, they become willing to try something new. One of our slogans is that if nothing changes, nothing changes.
So, with the motivation of avoiding a completely destroyed life, the newcomer listens through their gift of desperation. And it is indeed a gift.What the newcomer hears is that this program of recovery has worked for countless numbers of people.
The shift comes when the person starts to believe, that if this power is working for other people, maybe, just maybe, it might work for them too. The stories are innumerable. You can hear them in meetings, you can download them, you can read them, and you can watch them on YouTube or other video.
When the newcomer hears enough “before, during, and after” stories, they will begin to find the evidence undeniable. This power, whatever it is, whatever it isn’t, IS working for millions of people walking the road of recovery.
Step Two asks for a belief, not for faith. It only asks for a belief that if this power is working for others, it might work for you too. Step Two does not require any action. It is a shift of the heart and mind to engage with possibilities.
And the possibilities are endless.
Each Step prepares the person for the following step in a progressive fashion. Step 2 says that by being restored to sanity we can resonate with a new way to live. We can move into a new vibrational state of living that is uplifting and positive.
A spiritually based life. We have an opportunity, a road map, or if you will, a new musical score, to get in tune and align with the Universe. If we follow direction, we will not only be free from the alcohol, nicotine, or other drugs or behaviors, but we will be in a different emotional and mental state, resonating with other like-minded, healthy and positive people. Y
ou can have the life that you dream of. And what is really super cool is that if you work the 12 Step program, you will have a life beyond your wildest dreams.
Serenity Vista places the core philosophies of the 12 Steps at the heart of its program. Really, these 12 Steps are nothing more, or nothing less, than the spiritual principles that have guided seekers throughout the millennium and throughout the world. An active and dynamic English speaking AA/Recovery community of twelve step fellowship is one of the reasons that Boquete was chosen as the best location for Serenity Vista's international tropical private pay rehab for codependency and alcohol and other drug addiction.
Part of the holistic program offered in Panama are three 12 Step meetings a week and frequent fellowshipping with local 12 step members in recovery. When guests are preparing to return home, they are helped to connect with an appropriate Twelve Step member in their home community, before the guest leaves.
As the saying goes, the 12 Steps don't work for everyone, but they work the best for the most.
Other components of the comprehensive Serenity Vista program are mindfulness, yoga, excellent nutrition and delicious healthy foods, hiking, horseback riding, group counselling work, spiritual exploration, change management, art therapy and so much more.
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