All the words of the 12 Steps are specifically chosen. Step 2 focuses on preparing alcoholics to relinquish their need to control everything in their lives by introducing the concept of a higher power. Step 2 states, ‘We came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.” This step is about finding something outside of oneself that inspires sobriety. It’s a personal invitation to begin thinking what that higher power can be. The accent is what the higher power can do for those in recovery, not on who or what the power is. At this point, the awareness and understanding is in knowing sobriety cannot be obtained on one’s own and some kind of help is needed.
We came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity
Some ways you can use Step 2 to stop drinking
What inspires you to stay sober? Some people use God or other religious beliefs but that doesn’t have to be the only way. Someone might use their best self as their higher power. When they are sober, doing what they want to be doing and succeeding. Others might be inspired by another person or the love they want for their family and children. The only person your higher power needs to make sense to is you!
Connect with others in AA to explore how they have worked Step 2 and what their experience has been. If you’re not religious, AA members can help give some perspective on how to apply this step, provide alternatives to its interpretation and offer support on your own quest of understanding its use.
Be open. Accepting this step can be challenging based on personal feelings about God and religion. In addition, this step underlines the idea of not being able to control your drinking on your own. Staying open to new ideas on working Step 2 will be helpful in cementing its purpose.
The spiritual foundations of this step involve release of ego, humility, open mindedness, trust, faith, perseverance, forgiveness to name a few. Some AA members may add more depending on their own experience. It’s not about having an idea of how this higher power greater than ourselves is going to help, but believing it is possible.
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