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Twelve Points of Recovery for Newcomers

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Scott
Posts: 44
Joined: Thu Nov 19, 2020 10:53 pm

Twelve Points of Recovery for Newcomers

Post by Scott »

As newcomers, there are steps we take in CGAA that bring us to the point of readiness to begin working the Twelve Steps. For example, step work is best done with a sponsor, which requires asking for a sponsor, which requires getting to know people in the fellowship, which requires reaching out to others and asking for help, which requires attending meetings. The honest admission of the Step One cannot be done until someone has made significant progress in overcoming their denial, which requires listening to those who have already overcome denial, which requires attending meetings and keeping an open mind. All of these preliminary steps are every bit as important as the steps that come after them.

When new people in CGAA hear a reading of the Twelve Steps, they assume that it all begins with Step One and get the wrong impression that there aren’t any other steps leading up to them. Below is a list of Twelve Points of Recovery that lists some of the points that lead up to step work and a couple that come afterward. This list can help newcomers see that they have begun our program of recovery as soon as they attend a meeting and learn they’re not alone in their problems. It prepares them for step work with actions to take, attitudes to adopt, and a sense of the progress they’re making.

Twelve Points of Recovery for Newcomers

1. We attended our first meetings and learned we were not alone.
2. We listened to people’s honest sharing and tried to identify with stories about compulsive gaming, the attitudes that drove it, and its effects on their lives.
3. We became aware of our own denial around our addiction, saw how our problems were linked to our gaming behavior, and realized that we were fooling ourselves when we said, “It’s no big deal”, or “I can get it under control any time I want."
4. We became willing to abstain from gaming, one day at a time.
5. We introduced ourselves at meetings and began to feel a part of the group.
6. We attended meetings regularly and put in the time and effort necessary to prevent a relapse into active addiction.
7. We made social connections with other people in recovery, at first in the meetings and later outside the meetings.
8. We began trying out things that had worked well for those with long-term abstinence and emulating those who had turned their lives around in ways we found inspiring.
9. We got sponsors who could share their experience in working a program of recovery and guide us through step work.
10. We started formal work on the Twelve Steps with a sponsor.
11. We learned the value of serenity and the use of gratitude and acceptance to cultivate a sane, serene, useful, game-free life.
12. We helped run meetings and freely shared our experience, strength, and hope.

A big motivation I have for getting these preliminary steps in writing is that it would be extremely valuable to have in the Meeting Handbook for new meetings and their newcomers. There is often a big push to read the Twelve Steps at all meetings, which is a helpful reminder to those of us already working the steps but can be potentially misleading to newcomers if they get the message that there are no preliminary steps, that the whole program is the steps, or that they're not working the program if they haven't started the steps. If these Twelve Points are available for reading to newcomers, that will serve the need for a recovery-focused reading without overwhelming brand-new people with a tall order of inventories and amends and other later steps that do not yet concern them.
Scott
Posts: 44
Joined: Thu Nov 19, 2020 10:53 pm

Re: Twelve Points of Recovery for Newcomers

Post by Scott »

Thanks to everyone on the WhatsApp group who responded to questions about this list. I added in a few things, removed a few, and made each sentence as concise as I could. To be clear about the purposes of the list...

Purposes:
• To show a list of things we did along the way to becoming ready to work the steps.
• To show the list in its typical chronological order.
• To show the foundational pieces from which we get support and suggestions, rather than to show dozens of common suggestions.
• To begin at the very beginning and end where the Twelve Steps pick up.
• To allow newcomers to see where they’re at in this process and give them a way to measure progress.

(Second draft) Twelve Points of Recovery for Newcomers

1. We attended our first meetings and learned we were not alone.
2. We listened to people’s stories and tried to identify rather than compare.
3. We saw how our problems were linked to our gaming behavior and became aware of our denial.
4. We became willing to abstain from gaming, one day at a time.
5. We attended meetings regularly and put in the effort necessary to prevent a relapse.
6. We accepted we were sick people trying to get well, not bad people trying to become good.
7. We shared at meetings and began to feel a part of the group.
8. We spoke up when struggling and asked for help.
9. We tried out the suggestions that have worked well for others.
10. We connected socially with other members between meetings.
11. We got sponsors who could share their experience in working a program of recovery.
12. We started formal work on the Steps with a sponsor.
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