The success of the AA program largely depends on the fact that people who successfully become sober help people struggling with sobriety. These are people who can understand what an alcoholic goes through, physically and emotionally, because they were in the same boat once. 

Alcoholics Anonymous was conceptualized in 1935 by Bill Wilson and his doctor Bob Smith. Wilson published a text named “Alcoholics Anonymous” in 1939. The text described the philosophy and techniques of this program. Today, the text is popular as the 12 steps of Alcoholics Anonymous. Other addiction recovery groups and self-help programs, too, have adopted these steps. 

But is it mandatory to follow these steps?

The steps are based on the principles of AA. These are, you can say, the traditions of Alcoholics Anonymous. They form the very foundation. Following them gives you a sense of motivation, strength, and trust. This helps you to continue in your journey of sobriety. 

The steps help to bring discipline in the life of an alcoholic. And that’s what is needed the most. 

Take your time to follow the 12 steps

People new to AA meetings need not follow all the 12 steps together. They may take their time. In fact, you mustn’t follow any step unwillingly because it is useless then. Each step has a principle behind it and you must believe in the principle to follow it. 

People who are unwilling to follow the 12 traditions of Alcoholics Anonymous must not coerce themselves to do so. Instead, keep an open mind. Attend the meetings regularly. Listen to how recovered people narrate their experiences. Read the literature of AA. Share your own experience. Open up with people in the meeting. 

Try to go sober on as many days as possible. It’s okay if you slip one day. Try again. Continuing your efforts towards sobriety is the key to giving up alcohol successfully. Sobriety Calculator can help you in keeping a tab on the number of days you were sober. 

Gradually, as you begin to get “enlightened,” you will realize that the 12 steps are nothing but the very basis of living a disciplined, successful, and fulfilling life. Alcoholic or not, the 12 principles when imbibed by any individual can transform their lives and turn them into a better person. 

Principles of the 12 steps of AA

  1. Honesty
  2. Hope
  3. Surrender 
  4. Courage
  5. Integrity
  6. Willingness
  7. Humility
  8. Love
  9. Responsibility
  10. Discipline
  11. Awareness
  12. Service

It’s interesting to note that the journey towards de-addiction begins with becoming powerless and admitting your alcoholism, and ends with becoming powerful in your will and values of life. Check here.

Do not be doubtful whether you will be able to perform all the 12 steps. Take one step at a time. Live it fully. Take your time. Then go to the next one when you are ready. There is no competition here. 

Isn’t it high time you and your family and friends saw the sober side of you? Visit to find a local AA meeting near you. 

By Manali

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