Not working the steps when belonging to a twelve step program is a bit unsettling, but only if we allow others to unsettle us. In the end, our sobriety is our business; we may rely on others to help us along the path, but the reason for our presence is ultimately ourselves. I do not believe in a higher power, and that is okay, I managed Sober living houses to stop drinking anyway. There comes a time in most people’s lives who struggle with substances to face the fact; change or die. I used that statement, “change or die” as my higher power. I knew without a doubt I would continue my ride into oblivion without help, and the best help that was available included a twelve step program.
But they reach out in hopes of finding or feeling something. In the end, your Higher Power will be unique to you and your beliefs. You can pull from a variety of sources for inspiration, or you can come to your own understanding. Whatever the case may be, know that you are never alone, and that there are people waiting and willing to help you. While there are those who choose humanity or large groups of people as their Higher Power, an individual, such as a spouse, significant other, son or daughter, a parent, a friend, etc. is not your Higher Power.
You Dont Have To Be Religious To Attend 12
So, I can save my energy and live with the results of where my higher power decides I should be. It is tough to humbly admit that there is nothing I can do. I assure you, letting the current of life take you is much easier and a much more enjoyable way of life. A higher power is simply something bigger than yourself. It is human instinct for us to need to feel a “part of” and to feel like we belong. For me, a higher power was something as simple as energy.
gabby said something about atheists struggling with exponents because they don't believe in a higher power and then my nose started bleeding
— mikaela 🍓 (@CHERRYPVNCH) December 8, 2021
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Perspectives On Step 2
They begin to believe in something they weren’t capable of thinking about while they were under the influence of addictive substances. As they experience a spiritual awakening, they buy into the treatment process. Spirituality is an important part of recovery from addiction. Alcohol and other drugs make us feel like we’re alone.
It includes goal setting, analysis of personal situations, and alternate coping strategies. It is used in community centers, healthcare and primary care facilities, addiction treatment programs, and schools. It’s also an approach that can be tailored to specific groups of patients or communities. 12-step programs, such as Alcoholics or Narcotics Anonymous, have been beneficial to many people as a means of addiction recovery. Despite this, some people still have trouble with a higher power concept, especially if they are non-religious. The fact is that having a higher power when going through a 12-step program is necessary for some people to find a greater purpose.
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Morals, values and beliefs give people a reason for living, something to believe in and fight for; if there’s nothing you’re aligning yourself to, it’s much easier to say yes to things you never thought you would. Spirituality is beneficial to addiction recovery programs in that it gives you a sense of how you should struggling with alcohol live your life and why. Hopefully, through spirituality, you can determine the values that mean the most to you and align your motivations and actions accordingly. The saying goes, however, “Faith without works is dead.” In other words, anyone seeking a Higher Power will have to put effort into finding their faith.
I heard that if I did these things, I would stay sober and that’s what I wanted. However, I could not deny that very little of this made sense to me. To recover from addiction, we must believe we can be happy again. We have to have a purpose that motivates us to maintain sobriety.
Finding A Rehab Facility And The First Steps
These programs do base their recovery protocol extensively around a belief in a higher power. For some, this may be a deterrent which alienates them and creates a stumbling block that inhibits them from gleaning the full benefit of the steps or treatment.
I didn’t, and still don’t, feel comfortable with the idea that life is predestined for us, by God. Many people begin their search for a higher power by praying. They may not even believe that anyone or anything is listening.
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It could be depression, anxiety, grief, or trauma that leaves us feeling alone in the world.
Our website is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you’re struggling to define your own higher power while working through a 12-step program, here are some ideas to get you started. When we help other people, all of our own fears and insecurities disappear because we are focused on something outside of ourselves.
Moving From Despair And Towards Hope: The Second Step Of Aa
I hope that I continue to have questions and I hope that I keep working to be okay with not having all of the answers. God is a huge concept to wrap my head around, it’s fine if it takes me a lifetime to even make a dent. I play tug-a-war in my mind with Buddhist principles and Christian ideas. Some aspects of Christianity make sense to me, like a greater force that loves its children and even to some degree, the saving part, a God being able to help me out. I know I’m completely contradicting myself because that’s exactly where my faith is at right now.
While the 12 Steps were inspired by spiritual ideals, a 12-step program itself is not religious at all. Sociologist Darren Sherkat researched the belief of Americans in a higher power.
The Evolution Of The 12 Steps
It’s important to learn why these two are crucial components to treatment programs like Alcoholics Anonymous and why finding a higher power can directly impact your recovery experience. At Silver Lining, we have formed a highly skilled multi-disciplinary treatment team to deliver exceptional client care. Our team is comprised of credentialed staff members with more than 30 years of experience in the field of substance abuse and mental health. We take a conventional, new age and holistic approach when it comes to treating addiction and empowering you to find stability in your life with our encouraging support system. It is entirely possible that a person work through their drug or alcohol addiction and achieve full recovery and lasting sobriety without a belief in a higher power. For those who do not feel comfortable professing this belief or basing their recovery off of it, there are ways of finding hope and success in alternative methods and practices. A large variety of non-twelve-step programs do exist that offer complete and well-rounded recovery guidelines.
- Every person has their own unique set of experiences, circumstances, beliefs, and history—all of these are bound together and influence both their addiction and recovery.
- The 12 steps are also used in recovery programs for addictions other than alcohol.
- For them, the concept of reaching out to God or a Higher Power in order to get and stay sober is met with significant reluctance.
- Being anti-dependent comes from being shamed for having needs and wants as child.
- In addition to helping with an alcohol problem and recovery, participation in AA also provides a resource for the court system.
I have heard it said that it doesn’t matter if you believe in God or if you don’t believe in God, as long as you don’t believe you ARE God. Vanessa is a Montgomery County native who spends her free time traveling with her daughter and volunteering in the community.
I’m having vocal surgery in two weeks and struggling with the pain caused by a polyp. Pray for easing the pain, the patience to get through my dayjob, and care from a higher power. I’ll pray for you, too, Shane.
— Judith Wilding (@wildingReads) December 4, 2021