Spero Recovery Center is a peer-based residential recovery program. It is not a substitute for clinical treatment or individualized therapeutic services. The wisdom of A.A.’s first step for all of us is to be realistic about our personal limitations. Learn how am i powerless over alcohol to live meaningfully and fulsomely within those limitations. Life is too short to keep banging your head against brick walls that are beyond your power to smash through. At the same time, it used to be true that no human could walk on the moon.

  • America especially believes in grit as an important character trait.
  • Life is too short to keep banging your head against brick walls that are beyond your power to smash through.
  • In addition to support groups, individual therapy or counseling can provide a confidential and supportive environment for exploring feelings of powerlessness and developing coping strategies.
  • As recovery requires honesty, those with an inability to be honest with themselves and others also may be powerless.
  • By accepting that you’re powerless over alcohol, drugs or addictive behavior, you’ve come to terms with your personal limitations.


How many times have we had these kinds of thoughts and believed them? Let’s face it when we control it, we’re not enjoying it, and when we’re enjoying it, we’re not controlling it. They don’t talk about how that connects to drug addiction, but one can instantly see the relationship without a proper definition.

Understanding «Powerlessness» and Why Acceptance Liberates You

  • I have the choice to not drink, therefore I am not powerless over alcohol.
  • This could mean God, a general belief system or the recovery community itself.
  • This understanding of the word obsession explains why we keep going back to pick up the first drink or drug.
  • Engaging in spiritual practices, such as prayer, meditation, or journaling, can deepen the connection with a higher power and provide a source of guidance and support.
  • It opens the door to rebuilding relationships with loved ones, mending the fractures caused by addiction’s turmoil.
  • Constantly attempting to get your life under control when you are living in chaos is fruitless.

Serenity, to accept the things I cannot change (other people).Courage, to change the things that I can (myself).Wisdom, to know the difference. (This is a matter of awareness and acceptance not a lack of ability to make this distinction). Acknowledging powerlessness therefore means that we stop trying to do the impossible. We in recovery are accustomed to living at the extremes of all or nothing.

examples of powerlessness in addiction

Examples of Social Injustice

When you lay it all out, you will see that you did not have control in those moments. It’s so easy to blame other people for our problems, but recovery requires us to take personal responsibility, and that’s exactly what Alcoholics Anonymous teaches. It’s your responsibility to stay engaged in your recovery and work with your sponsor.

SMART Recovery vs. A.A. – Is One Better?

Power, Powerlessness and Addiction, by Jim Orford – Times Higher Education

Power, Powerlessness and Addiction, by Jim Orford.

Posted: Thu, 17 Oct 2013 07:00:00 GMT [source]

Our culture is so entrenched in competing for success that we’re uncomfortable acknowledging the limits of what we can and cannot do, individually. With addiction, there are a lot of emotions that come with the territory. From feelings of guilt and embarrassment to powerlessness and helplessness, it can be hard to determine which one is actually the most accurate representation of how we feel.

Questions to Ask Yourself in 1st Step AA

We tell our children they can be anything they want to be if they work hard enough. Motivational speakers promise unlimited success and riches to those who are dedicated enough to get up whenever they fall and try, try, try. And people are instructed to repeat affirmations like “I am important and deserve to be happy” and “I am thankful for today” to convince their reluctant minds these memes are true. All of this culminates in my choice not to take responsibility for the feelings, beliefs, and actions of others.

  • It equips individuals with the tools to navigate the challenges that arise, helping them resist the temptations of addiction, manage stress, and cope with relapses when they occur.
  • Most examples of powerlessness in sobriety have to do with admitting that you cannot change your behaviors on your own.
  • And if you end up drinking or using once sober, you have to take responsibility for that too.
  • Being humble can also prevent the kind of overconfidence in recovery that can ultimately lead to relapse.
  • You recognize that none of your efforts to stop have truly worked, and that the addiction has caused destruction and chaos in your life.
  • Equity in employment is another crucial aspect of promoting empowerment.

What is Step 1 in AA?

This trust and surrender create space for growth and transformation, enabling us to experience a deeper sense of peace and serenity. Promoting equity and opportunity is a vital step in empowering marginalized communities. This includes ensuring equal access to education, healthcare, employment, and legal systems. By addressing disparities and providing resources and support, we can create an environment that allows individuals in marginalized communities to thrive. Step One marks the beginning of a lifelong commitment to connection, support, and personal growth.

The Importance of Good Nutrition in Addiction Recovery

  • It takes courage and self-awareness to confront the reality of addiction and acknowledge the need for help.
  • Once you realize that addiction is a disease, you can start to see yourself as someone who is sick, rather than someone who is weak or morally flawed.