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How the 12-Step Program Works

How the 12-Step Program Works

At Narcotics Anonymous, we follow a process called the 12-Step Program, which is the same process used by Alcoholics Anonymous.

The following is a list of the 12 steps to recovery, as practiced by AA and NA:

  1. We admitted that we were powerless over our addiction, that our lives had become unmanageable.
  2. We came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
  3. We made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God, as we understood Him.
  4. We made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
  5. We admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
  6. We were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
  7. We humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
  8. We made a list of all persons we had harmed and became willing to make amends to them all.
  9. We made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
  10. We continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
  11. We 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.
  12. Having had a spiritual awakening as a result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to addicts (alcoholics), and to practice these principles in all our affairs.

Each step requires effort, self-reflection and community support, which is why we recommend attending group sessions daily for the first 90 days of recovery. At the very least, we strongly recommend attending a bare minimum of at least 3 meetings a week for the first 3 months.The first few weeks of recovery are the most difficult, so having a supportive environment is essential during this time. Inpatient treatment is also recommended for teens in the first stages of recovery.

Research has also shown us that the 12-Step Program works best for recovering teens when they are working with peers rather than adults. Teens can become frustrated in NA groups that are adult-oriented, because the issues facing, for example, a35-year-old are different from the issues faced by teens. Dropout rates are high for teens in adult-oriented programs, which is why the Narcotics AnonymousYouth Center has created a program specifically for teens and young adults. Asa result our members are more likely to stick with the program than they would be in a similar adult-oriented program.