Twelfth Step Within: Fun and Fellowship

Many of us think of the 12 th Step as reaching out to those outside of our fellowship who may need or want the OA way of life.   That is certainly an accurate and important way to approach this step.   The idea behind the 12 th Step Within is that there are many within our fellowship that need outreach as well. That outreach can come in many forms.

All I Needed Was Just Enough Faith

When I think about faith, I think about the di ff erence in my life just three years ago. My faith was dried up, cracked to the touch. I believed in things that were killing me. I’d quit believing that having faith in something greater could lastingly do anything for me. I also believed I had a right to feel this way because of the struggles and horrors I’d witnessed throughout my life. Back then, the ongoing hell around me had me tangled as I spent most of my days for several years with my son in a children’s cancer hospital. Eventually, I completely surrendered my faith and my life to substances that o ff ered me relief for just brief seconds.

Some Thoughts About Faith

F is for - F ear which is not compatible with faith. A is for - A cceptance. Perhaps faith begins with acceptance. I is for - I , me, mine which are replaced, because of faith, with a power greater than myself. T is for - T he Third Step whose principle is faith. H is for - H appiness. Happiness like faith is an inside job. Since March is the 3 rd  month of the year, I am focusing on the 3 rd  step and its principle: faith. I’m writing about the 3 rd  step as I read the  OA 12 & 12 , which I have read many times before. My sponsor suggested that reading something familiar with a new understanding is an example of “setting aside” what I know. I will then be available to learn something new.  And , to my surprise, I am learning new things. For me, this might also be an example of a spiritual experience.

The World Isn’t Ending, I Am Just Hungry

When I was deep into the disease of compulsive overeating, I rarely felt physical hunger. Since I was eating in excess all the time I never gave my body the chance to be hungry. On the rare occasion that I did feel physical hunger— things got ugly quickly. That uncomfortable gurgling in my belly triggered panic in my head that the world was ending. As the hunger pangs worsened I became irritable, moody and discontent. I could count on this without fail. Physical hunger ruled me.   A sponsor suggested a solution that worked like gangbusters. Always keep small snacks on hand so you never get too hungry. This was a revelation to me— one, that another compulsive overeater felt the same way and two, that it was okay to plan for this and see that my needs were met. Mind blown. From then on I kept a small packet of almonds or protein bar in my glove compartment and my purse at all times.   This solution worked for me for years and I thought it was the best I could hope for. But, today after 2

Step 6 - Surrender Story

While each of the steps has a related spiritual principle, in my experience, I have to work many principles throughout the entire process. Honest, humility and surrender are needed as I work every one of the twelve steps. Surrender has been one of the strongest principles in my time in recovery.  I have a two part journey having left OA for about ten years, losing both my abstinence and a healthy body weight. The first time around, "I surrender" was a mantra. I needed it in the restroom at a new job or when getting ready to eat a meal with family and especially in the morning with the 3rd Step prayer. Doing the steps required a huge surrender of what I thought I knew about food, my life and myself. Surrendering in Steps 1 and 2 were necessary to stay and to keep going. Then, I surrendered by taking a leap, saying the 3rd step prayer with a sponsor. Writing and sharing my 4th step was a surrender of my lack of trust. But, in Step 6, I truly understood surrender.  I had just re

Working Steps 10, 11 & 12 Transform My Defects into Forgiveness and Compassion

“With defects unattended, the insanity of compulsive overeating returns and that is death, spiritually and emotionally, if not physically.” A truer statement was never written! When I let my defects go untended, it’s like a bramble garden popping up overnight, and there’s no way out of the bushes without getting scratched and stuck by the thorns.

Taking It Easy in the Program - Being Good to Yourself in the Process

RICKICISM NO. 8  Some of us arrive at our Program and soon develop a fired-up frame of mind, determined to do well but expecting miracles overnight. OA Long-timers know that it is probably not going to happen quite that way.