what are the 12 steps of aa

Alcohol addiction can feel impossible to overcome alone and many people need help to obtain long-term sobriety. The Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous are known for being an effective set of guiding principles in helping people work through alcohol addiction.

The 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous

The Twelve Steps were developed in 1935 as part of the founding of the AA group – Alcoholics Anonymous. The purpose of the Steps is to help individuals struggling with alcohol addiction obtain sobriety.

Below are the Twelve Steps that can help with personal recovery from alcohol abuse:

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

Step 2. Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.

Step 3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.

Step 4. Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.

Step 5. Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.

Step 6. We’re entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.

Step 7. Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.

Step 8. Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.

Step 9. Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.

Step 10. Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.

Step 11. Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.

Step 12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these Steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.

Each of the 12 Steps requires a specific action, all of which is aimed at helping individuals in their recovery from addiction. 

What are the Twelve Traditions?

The Twelve Traditions are somewhat connected to the Twelve Steps of AA, except that they provide guidelines for “relationships between the groups, members, the global Fellowship and society at large,” according to Alcoholics Annonymous. They also address questions related to financials, public relations, donations, and purpose. 

How Long Will the 12 Steps Take?

The exact amount of time it takes to work through each of the Steps varies from person to person. It can take some people 90 days and others several months or even longer. It’s important to remember that the Steps should not be rushed.

How a Rehab Facility Can Help

An alcohol rehab facility can help you apply the 12 Steps to your recovery journey and daily life, as well as use a variety of programs and therapies for your addiction in combination with the 12 Steps. 

Specifically, an alcohol rehab facility can help you physically withdraw from alcohol use (known as medical detox), while also providing a variety of evidence-based therapies in an Outpatient Program, Intensive Outpatient Program, Partial Hospitalization Program, and Aftercare Programs. 

Therapies in each program often include individual therapy, group therapy, and family therapy, as well as various 12-Step programs. 

Your Florida Treatment Center for Alcohol Addiction & Substance Abuse

Our team of compassionate professionals at Harmony Outpatient provides expert care to help you make the changes you need to pursue life-long sobriety. If you have any questions related to our alcohol addiction and substance abuse treatment programs, medical detox, finding treatment options near you, health insurance, or payment options, please feel free to contact us.