please take what you need and leave the rest...


God, grant me the serenity to accept the people i cannot change

the courage to change the one i can

and wisdom to know that one is me

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Step 1 ==>>

We admitted we were powerless over the effects of alcoholism or other family dysfunction, that our lives had become unmanageable.

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Step 2 ==>>

Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.

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Step 3 ==>>

Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understand God.

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Step 4 ==>>

Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.

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Step 5 ==>>

Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.

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Step 6 ==>>

Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.

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Step 7 ==>>

Humbly asked God to remove our shortcomings.

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Step 8 ==>>

Made a list of all persons we had harmed and became willing to make amends to them all.

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Step 9 ==>>

Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.

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Step 10 ==>>

Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.

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Step 11 ==>>

Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God, as we understand God, praying only for knowledge of God's will for us and the power to carry that out.

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Step 12 ==>>

Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these Steps, we tried to carry this message to others who still suffer, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.

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The "Laundry List"

14 Characteristics of an Adult Child

  1. We become isolated and afraid of people and authority figures.
  2. We became approval seekers and lost our identity in the process.
  3. We are frightened by angry people and any personal criticism.
  4. We either become alcoholics, marry them, or both, or find another compulsive personality such as a workaholic to fulfill our sick abandonment needs.
  5. We live life from the viewpoint of victims and are attracted by that weakness in our love and friendship relationships.
  6. We have an overdeveloped sense of responsibility and it is easier for us to be concerned with others rather than ourselves; this enables us not to look too closely at our own faults, etc.
  7. We get guilt feelings when we stand up for ourselves instead of giving in to others.
  8. We became addicted to excitement.
  9. We confuse love and pity and tend to "love" people we can "pity" and "rescue."
  10. We have "stuffed" our feelings from our traumatic childhoods and have lost the ability to feel or express our feelings because it hurts so much (denial.)
  11. We judge ourselves harshly and have a very low sense of self-esteem.
  12. We are dependent personalities who are terrified of abandonment and will do anything to hold on to a relationship in order not to experience painful abandonment feelings which we received from living with sick people who were never there emotionally for us.
  13. Alcoholism is a family disease and we became para-alcoholics and took on the characteristics of that disease even though we did not pick up the drink.
  14. Para-alcoholics are reactors rather than actors.

~ Tony A., 1978 ~

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The Solution

The solution is to become your own loving parent

As ACA becomes a safe place for you, you will find freedom to express all the hurts and fears you have kept inside and to free yourself from the shame and blame that are carryovers from the past. You will become an adult who is imprisoned no longer by childhood reactions. You will recover the child within you, learning to accept and love yourself.

The healing begins when we risk moving out of isolation. Feelings and buried memories will return. By gradually releasing the burden of unexpressed grief, we slowly move out of the past. We learn to re-parent ourselves with gentleness, humor, love and respect.

This process allows us to see our biological parents as the instruments of our existence. Our actual parent is a Higher Power whom some of us choose to call God. Although we had alcoholic or dysfunctional parents, our Higher Power gave us the Twelve Steps of Recovery.

This is the action and work that heals us: we use the Steps; we use the meetings; we use the telephone. We share our experience, strength, and hope with each other. We learn to restructure our sick thinking one day at a time. When we release our parents from responsibility for our actions today, we become free to make healthful decisions as actors, not reactors. We progress from hurting, to healing, to helping. We awaken to a sense of wholeness we never knew was possible.

By attending these meetings on a regular basis, you will come to see parental alcoholism or family dysfunction for what it is: a disease that infected you as a child and continues to affect you as an adult. You will learn to keep the focus on yourself in the here and now. You will take responsibility for your own life and supply your own parenting.

You will not do this alone. Look around you and you will see others who know how you feel. We will love and encourage you no matter what. We ask you to accept us just as we accept you.

This is a spiritual program based on action coming from love. We are sure that as the love grows inside you, you will see beautiful changes in all your relationships, especially with God, yourself, and your parents.

retrieved from on April 4, 2018

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The Promises

  1. We will discover our real identities by loving and accepting ourselves.
  2. Our self-esteem will increase as we give ourselves approval on a daily basis.
  3. Fear of authority figures and the need to "people-please" will leave us.
  4. Our ability to share intimacy will grow inside us.
  5. As we face our abandonment issues, we will be attracted by strengths and become more tolerant of weaknesses.
  6. We will enjoy feeling stable, peaceful, and financially secure.
  7. We will learn how to play and have fun in our lives.
  8. We will choose to love people who can love and be responsible for themselves.
  9. Healthy boundaries and limits will become easier for us to set.
  10. Fears of failure and success will leave us, as we intuitively make healthier choices.
  11. With help from our ACA support group, we will slowly release our dysfunctional behaviors.
  12. Gradually, with our Higher Power's help, we will learn to expect the best and get it.

retrieved from on April 4, 2018

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ACA Is...

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The Problem

Many of us found that we had several characteristics in common as a result of being brought up in an alcoholic or dysfunctional household. We had come to feel isolated and uneasy with other people, especially authority figures. To protect ourselves, we became people-pleasers, even though we lost our own identities in the process. All the same we would mistake any personal criticism as a threat. We either became alcoholics (or practiced other addictive behavior) ourselves, or married them, or both. Failing that, we found other compulsive personalities, such as a workaholic, to fulfill our sick need for abandonment.

We lived life from the standpoint of victims. Having an overdeveloped sense of responsibility, we preferred to be concerned with others rather than ourselves. We got guilt feelings when we stood up for ourselves rather than giving in to others. Thus, we became reactors, rather than actors, letting others take the initiative. We were dependent personalities, terrified of abandonment, willing to do almost anything to hold on to a relationship in order not to be abandoned emotionally. Yet we kept choosing insecure relationships because they matched our childhood relationship with alcoholic or dysfunctional parents.

These symptoms of the family disease of alcoholism or other dysfunction made us "co-victims", those who take on the characteristics of the disease without necessarily ever taking a drink. We learned to keep our feelings down as children and kept them buried as adults. As a result of this conditioning, we confused love with pity, tending to love those we could rescue. Even more self-defeating, we became addicted to excitement in all our affairs, preferring constant upset to workable relationships.

This is a description, not an indictment.

Adapted from The Laundry List

retrieved from on April 4, 2018

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Step One ACA affirmation-meditation exercise

from Twelve Steps of Adult Children Steps Workbook page 42


  1. I am powerless over the effects of alcoholism and family dysfunction.
  2. I am powerless over the Laundry List traits.
  3. My life is unmanageable when I focus on others rather than myself.
  4. I did not cause my parents' addictions or dysfunction.
  5. My feelings and thoughts are separate from the thoughts of my parents and my family.
  6. I can stop trying to heal or to change my family through my current relationships. I can stop trying to change others.
  7. I can stop condemning myself without mercy.
  8. I am a valuable person.

Sometimes affirmations work better for me if I say them with, "You are..." rather than "I am..."

Please try these if you feel guided:

  1. You are powerless over the effects of alcoholism and family dysfunction.
  2. You are powerless over the Laundry List traits.
  3. Your life is unmanageable when you focus on others rather than yourself.
  4. You did not cause your parents' addictions or dysfunction.
  5. Your feelings and thoughts are separate from the thoughts of your parents and your family.
  6. You can stop trying to heal or to change your family through your current relationships. You can stop trying to change others.
  7. You can stop condemning yourself without mercy.
  8. You are a valuable person.

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God, empty me of me and fill me with Thee.

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Loving Yourself ==>>


I love you, [insert your name here].

I love you, little [insert your name here].

~~~~~while wrapping your arms around yourself and giving your beloved self a hug~~~~~

~~~~~repeat 5 times~~~~~

for example,

I love you Rachel, I love you little Rachel.

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Came to Believe... ACA Statements for the Fellowship Text

1.We believe ... this book (ACA Big Book) represents the most complete description of the ACA experience from our fellowship view. (pg. ix)

2.We believe ... this discussion (on the greater meaning of ACA Recovery) will lead to new levels of clarity for Adult Children. (pg. ix)

3.We believe ... that ACA has the potential to help the suffering Adult Children of the world on the magnitude that Alcoholics Anonymous brought relief to hopeless alcoholics in the 20th century. (xiii)

4.We believe ... that once a recovering Adult Child meets and shares his or her story with another Adult Child seeking help, that adult cannot view co-dependence the same again. (pg. xiv)

5.In addition to focusing on ourselves through the Twelve Steps, we believe ... that the family system is open for inspection as well. (pg. xv)

6. We believe ... that each of us is born with a True Self that is forced into hiding by dysfunctional parenting. (pg. xv)

7.We believe ... it is through the Twelve steps program of ACA that we no longer live life from a basis of fear. We live with self-care and love. (pg. xx iv)

8.In ACA we believe ... the experiences of growing up in a dysfunctional family affect us as adults. (pg. 3)

9.Adult children from all family types not only feel shame deeply, but we believe ... we are shame. (pg. 10)

10.We believe ... that we will be safe and never abandoned if we are nice and if we never show anger. (pg. 11)

11.We believe ... that the long-term effects of fear transferred to us by a non-alcoholic parent can match the damaging effects of alcohol. (pg. 23)

12.We believe ... that hitting, threats, projection, belittlement, and indifference are the delivery mechanisms that deeply insert the disease of family dysfunction within us. (pg. 27)

13.We believe ... that something is wrong with us even though we cannot voice what the thing is. (pg. 30)

14.We ... either believe ... that the way we were raised has a direct link to our compulsions and co-dependence as adults, or we do not believe it. (pg. 33)

15.Yet, if we believe ... there is a connection, we can choose ACA and pick up the tools of recovery. (pg. 33)

16.We believe ... the solution of inclusion rose from the spiritual depths of ACA meetings and group consciences. (pg. 63)

17.We believe ... that the disease of family dysfunction is a spiritual dilemma rather than a moral deficiency to be solved by proper living. (pg. 75)

18.We don't believe ... we have a mental health problem to be cured purely by science. (pg. 75)

19.Many of us believe ... that our actual parent is a Higher Power, who is patient and loving. (pg. 75)

20.Most of us no longer believe ... that God is punishing, abandoning, or indifferent. (pg, 75)

21.We believe ... that family dysfunction is a spiritual disease that best responds to surrender, self-acceptance, and consistent effort by the adult child to make conscious contact with a Higher Power. (pg. 76)

22.We don't believe ... that family dysfunction is a moral deficiency of the parents or that changing our behavior is merely a matter of self-will. (pg. 76)

23.Adult Children of Alcoholics believe ... that recovery from the effects of growing up in a dysfunctional home requires spiritual intervention; however we do not propose to be the authority on what works best for each individual. (pg. 78)

24.We are God's children despite mistakes made. Through such affirmations and Twelve Step work, we come to believe ... in our self-worth. (pg. 93)

25.We wrongly believed ... we solved the problems from our birth family by keeping our own homes in order. We may have even eliminated alcohol or other dysfunction from our home. Our children, who often act out in addiction or aggression, give us a clue to our failing. We unintentionally passed on our family insanity or distorted thinking. (pg. 134)

26.We came to believe that this behavior was normal when it was insane by the standards of decency or true parental love. (pg. 135)

27.We are not aligned with any religious, mystical, or spiritual systems of belief; however, we believe it is imperative that the recovering adult child find a Higher Power to help him or her find healing from growing up in a dysfunctional home. (pg. 141)

28.We do not believe our brains are missing any elements. We start with the premise that we are whole and that we had a normal reaction to an abnormal situation of being raised in a dysfunctional home. (pg. 143)

29.In ACA, we believe we were born whole and became fragmented in body, mind, and spirit through abandonment and shame. We need help finding a way to return to our miracle state. (pg. 143)

30.We believe in a spiritual solution for the disease of family dysfunction. (pg. 143)

31.In addition to a deep sense of shame and abandonment, we believe that most of our emotional and mental distress can be traced to our steadfast nature to control. In ACA, we realize that control was the survival trait which kept us safe or alive in our dysfunctional homes. (pg. 143)

32.We believe our best hope is seeking a spiritual solution in concert with other recovering adult children. (pg. 148)

33.We are an autonomous program founded on the belief ... that family dysfunction is a disease that affected us as children and affects us as adults. (pg. 333)

34.We believe ... that the fear and confused thinking of the co-dependent is one of the mechanisms that pass on alcoholism and other family dysfunction even when alcohol is removed from the home. (pg. 335)

35.ACA believes ... there is a direct link between our childhood and our decisions and thoughts as an adult. (pg. 338)

36.As discussed in Chapter Two, we believe ... that some of our stored feelings become a drug, driving us from the inside to harm ourselves or others. This is the para-alcoholic nature of co-dependence. (pg. 457)

37.With this knowledge of the body, we believe ... that fear and other emotions can act as a drug. (pg. 458)

38.We believe ... when the time is right, that teen leadership will form meetings for abused and neglected young people wanting what ACA has to offer. (pg. 475)

39.In ACA, we believe ... connecting with our feelings and Inner Child are just as important as working the Twelve Steps and Sponsorship. (pg. 558)

Our feelings of self-worth and adequacy start to grow as we successfully reparent ourselves, and we begin to trust our ability to love and serve others. We give service just by being present to support and encourage other members of the program as they make the transition from frightened adult children to whole human beings who are capable of acting with the spontaneity of a child and the wisdom of a mature adult. This central concept underlies and supports all forms of service. (pg. 354)

A healthy relationship involves talking about feelings, mutual respect, and a commitment to trust and honesty. There are many other elements to a successful and intimate relationship, but these are a good start. Not surprisingly, these are the tools and principles included in the ACA program: feelings, respect, trust, and honesty. (pg. 403)

In ACA, we are more alike than different. The common denominator among all adult children involves the sense that we have failed at fixing our families or that we helped cause our family problems. Believing we could have controlled outcomes or restored our family is a common error in thinking among adult children from all dysfunctional family types. Our common solution is a spiritual awakening brought by seeking a God of our Understanding through the Twelve Steps. We must also reparent ourselves and help others to continue our spiritual growth. These are the foundational truths of our fellowship put in place from the beginning. These experiences have sustained us and carried us ... as Adult Children of Alcoholics. (pg. 646)

We believe that learning to make relationships work is at the core of full recovery. Doing so takes skill and skills are learned. (pg. 15, Stage II Recovery Life Beyond Addiction, Earnie Larsen)

retrieved from April 14, 2018

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New Thought Patterns From the Big Red Book

Listen to your Inner Child not with fear but with openness.

Love this child for all she or he has had to defend against.

Know that feelings are to be listened to; they are cues and signals that indicate where you are and what you need.

Mistakes are a sign of growing; remember, be gentle with yourself.

Success is not relative to others. It is a feeling of love and accomplishment for yourself.

Recovery is accepting yourself for who you are, no longer waiting for others to define you or approve of you.

It is safe to take time to play today. Play fuels your creativity, tickles your Inner Child, and nurtures your soul.

May you respond with the vulnerability of your child, but with the strength of your adult.

Surround yourself with people who respect and treat you well.

In faith one finds the strength to survive times of great fear and sadness.

see page xxiv-xxv Big Red Book

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an image from

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May I be of service??? ==>>

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Personal Power ==>>

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Integration ==>>

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Grandparents in ACA ==>>

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Defects of Character ==>>

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Emotional Sobriety ==>>

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Read this... ==>>

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Acting Purposefully ==>>

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Reverse Side of the Laundry List ==>>

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Promise Four ==>> 

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Are You An Adult Child? ==>>

Are you an adult child?
  1.  Do you recall anyone drinking or taking drugs or being involved in some other behavior that you now believe could be dysfunctional?
  2.  Did you avoid bringing friends to your home because of drinking or some other dysfunctional behavior in the home?
  3.  Did one of your parents make excuses for the other parent’s drinking or other behaviors?
  4.  Did your parents focus on each other so much that they seemed to ignore you?
  5.  Did your parents or relatives argue constantly?
  6.  Were you drawn into arguments or disagreements and asked to choose sides with one relative against another?
  7.  Did you try to protect your brothers or sisters against drinking or other behavior in the family?
  8.  As an adult, do you feel immature? Do you feel like you are a child inside?
  9.  As an adult, do you believe you are treated like a child when you interact with your parents? Are you continuing to live out a childhood role with the parents?
 10.  Do you believe that it is your responsibility to take care of your parents’ feelings or worries? Do other relatives look to you to solve their problems?
 11.  Do you fear authority figures and angry people?
 12.  Do you constantly seek approval or praise but have difficulty accepting a compliment when one comes your way?
 13.  Do you see most forms of criticism as a personal attack?
 14.  Do you over-commit yourself and then feel angry when others do not appreciate what you do?
 15.  Do you think you are responsible for the way another person feels or behaves?
 16.  Do you have difficulty identifying feelings?
 17.  Do you focus outside yourself for love or security?
 18.  Do you involve yourself in the problems of others? Do you feel more alive when there is a crisis?
 19.  Do you equate sex with intimacy?
 20.  Do you confuse love and pity?
 21.  Have you found yourself in a relationship with a compulsive or dangerous person and wonder how you got there?
 22.  Do you judge yourself without mercy and guess at what is normal?
 23.  Do you behave one way in public and another way at home?
 24.  Do you think your parents had a problem with drinking or taking drugs?
 25.  Do you think you were affected by the drinking or other dysfunctional behavior of your parents or family?

(Questions from the ACA Fellowship Text, pp. 18-20)
If you answered “yes” to three or more of these questions, you  may  be  suffering  from  the  effects  of  growing  up  in  an  alcoholic  or  other  dysfunctional family. We welcome you to attend an ACA meeting in your area to learn more.

Adult Children of Alcoholics is an anonymous Twelve Step  and  Twelve  Tradition  fellowship. Our  meetings offer a safe environment for adult children to share their common experiences. By attending meetings regularly and by sharing about our lives, we gradually change our thinking and behavior. By working the ACA program, we find another way to live.

You  can  find  a  worldwide  list  of  ACA  meetings,  including telephone and online meetings at:

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The Flip Side of The Laundry List ==>>

The Flip Side of The Laundry List
1) We move out of isolation and are not unrealistically afraid of other people, even authority
2) We do not depend on others to tell us who we are.
3) We  are  not  automatically  frightened  by  angry  people  and  no  longer  regard  personal  
criticism as a threat.
4) We do not have a compulsive need to recreate abandonment.
5) We stop living life from the standpoint of victims and are not attracted by this trait in our
important relationships.
6) We do not use enabling as a way to avoid looking at our own shortcomings.
7) We do not feel guilty when we stand up for ourselves.
8) We  avoid  emotional  intoxication  and  choose  workable  relationships  instead  of  constant  
9) We are able to distinguish love from pity, and do not think “rescuing” people we “pity” is
an act of love.
10) We come out of denial about our traumatic childhoods and regain the ability to feel and
express our emotions.
11) We stop judging and condemning ourselves and discover a sense of self-worth.
12) We  grow  in  independence  and  are  no  longer  terrified  of  abandonment.  We  have interdependent relationships with healthy people, not dependent relationships with people who are emotionally unavailable.
13) The characteristics of alcoholism and para-alcoholism we have internalized are identified, acknowledged, and removed.
14) We are actors, not reactors.

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The Flip Side of The Other Laundry List ==>>

The Flip Side of The Other Laundry List
1) We face and resolve our fear of people and our dread of isolation and stop intimidating others with our power and position.
2) We realize the sanctuary we have built to protect the frightened and injured child within has become a prison and we become willing to risk moving out of isolation.
3) With our renewed sense of self-worth and self-esteem we realize it is no longer necessary to protect ourselves by intimidating others with contempt, ridicule and anger.
4) We accept and comfort the isolated and hurt inner child we have abandoned and disavowed and thereby end the need to act out our fears of enmeshment and abandonment with other people.
5) Because we are whole and complete we no longer try to control others through manipulation and force and bind them to us with fear in order to avoid feeling isolated and alone.
6) Through our in-depth inventory we discover our true identity as capable, worthwhile people. By asking to have our shortcomings removed we are freed from the burden of inferiority and grandiosity.
7) We support and encourage others in their efforts to be assertive.
8) We uncover, acknowledge and express our childhood fears and withdraw from emotional intoxication.
9) We have compassion for anyone who is trapped in the “drama triangle” and is desperately searching for a way out of insanity.
10) We accept we were traumatized in childhood and lost the ability to feel. Using the 12 Steps as a program of recovery we regain the ability to feel and remember and become whole human beings who are happy, joyous and free.
11) In accepting we were powerless as children to “save” our family we are able to release our self-hate and to stop punishing ourselves and others for not being enough.
12) By accepting and reuniting with the inner child we are no longer threatened by intimacy, by the fear of being engulfed or made invisible.
13) By acknowledging the reality of family dysfunction we no longer have to act as if nothing were wrong or keep denying that we are still unconsciously reacting to childhood harm and injury.
14) We stop denying and do something about our post-traumatic dependency on substances, people, places and things to distort and avoid reality.


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Step 1 Spiritual Principles ==>> Powerless and Surrender
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Step 2 Spiritual Principles ==>> Openmindedness and Clarity
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Step 3 Spiritual Principles ==>> Willingness and Accepting Help
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Step 4 Spiritual Principles ==>> Self-Honesty and Courage
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Step 5 Spiritual Principles ==>> Honesty and Trust
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Step 6 Spiritual Principles ==>> Willingness
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Step 7 Spiritual Principles ==>> Humility
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Step 8 Spiritual Principles ==>> Willingness and Self-Forgiveness
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Step 9 Spiritual Principles ==>> Forgiveness and Courage
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Step 10 Spiritual Principles ==>> Honesty and Discernment
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Step 11 Spiritual Principles ==>> Seeking and Listening
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Step 12 Spiritual Principles ==>> Love and Self-Love
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Third Step Prayer ==>> God. I am willing to surrender my fears and to place my will and my life in your care one day at a time. Grant me the wisdom to know the difference between the things I can and cannot change. Help me to remember that I can ask for help. I am not alone. Amen.
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Promise 11

"With help from our ACA support group, we will slowly release our dysfunctional behaviors."

Fourth Step Prayer:

Divine Creator. Help me to be rigorously honest and to care for myself during this Fourth Step process. Let me practice gentleness and not abandon myself on this spiritual journey. Help me remember that I have attributes, and that I can ask for forgiveness. I am not alone. I can ask for help. Amen.

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Step 4 Affirmation ==>> The promises of ACA are for me, and they are being fulfilled in my life. I am discovering my real identity. I am facing shame and uncomfortable feelings without running or acting-out. I have positive attributes that I am discovering. God,as I understand God, hears my prayers. I can ask for help.
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Fifth Step Prayer ==>> Divine Creator: Thank you for this chance to speak honestly with another person about the events of my life. Help me accept responsibility for my actions. Let me show compassion for myself and my family as I revisit my thinking and actions that have blocked me from your love. Restore my child within. Restore my feelings. Restore my trust in myself. Amen.
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Step 6 Defects of Character & Laundry List Survival Traits ==>>

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Seventh Step Prayer - Character Defects

God, I am now ready that you should remove from all my defects of character, which block me from accepting your divine love and living with true humility toward others. Renew my strength so that I might help myself and others along this path of recovery.

I humbly ask you to remove my defect of hatred,

I humbly ask you to remove my defect of rage,

I humbly ask you to remove my defect of evil,

I humbly ask you to remove my defect of pride,


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Seventh Step Prayer - Laundry List Traits

God, I am now ready that you should integrate my survival traits which block me from accepting your divine love. Grant me wholeness.

I humbly ask you to integrate my trait of addictive living,

I humbly ask you to integrate my trait of people-pleasing,

I humbly ask you to integrate my trait of needing everyone to be in love with me,

I humbly ask you to integrate my trait of compulsiveness,

I humbly ask you to integrate my trait of victimhood,


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Chapter 7 Meditation ==>>

We know that we can have healthy love in our lives. You can have healthy love in your life.

Say, "I can have healthy love in my life."

page 233 of the Big Red Book

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Making Amends

During an amends, we might say: "I am involved in a program in which I am learning to change my behavior and to live more honestly and openly. Part of the process involves making amends to people I have harmed with my behavior. I am making amends to you for _______________________ (name the behavior, action, or other). I want to make it right. I am not making excuses, but I have harmed people based on my lack of knowledge about living. I am changing my behavior."

from page 242 of the Big Red Book

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Step Seven Affirmations

I am strong

I am humorous

I am sensitive

I am willing

I am intelligent

I am compassionate

I am courteous

I am talented

I am honest

I am organized

I am spontaneous

I am creative

I am loving

I am a listener

I am spiritual

I am trustworthy

I am tenacious

I am judicious

I am accepting

I am modest

I am prompt

I am kind

I am hard working

I am a friend

I am an ACA member

from page 263 of the Big Red Book

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Step 11 Prayer ==>> God, may I be whole and my miracle restored. Amen.
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Step 11 Prayer ==>>


When I look let me truly see.

When I listen let me truly hear."

see page 274 of the Big Red Book

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Step 11 Meditation Exercise ==>>

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Affirmations for Healthy, Loving Relationships ==>>

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Messages from my Higher Power ==>>

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Bust Development for those of the female gender abused as children ==>>

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Confidence in Company ==>>

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Ego Strengthener ==>>

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Chapter Eight Review of Key Terms

  1. Inner Child - The original person, being, or force which we truly are. Some ACA members call this the True Self.
  2. False Self - The addicted or codependent self.
  3. Loving Parent or Reparenting - The inner parent we can develop from the part of us that took action to care for ourselves as children and which can be awakened in recovery.
  4. Critical Parent - The hypercritical and judgmental voice that frequently finds fault in our thoughts and actions. This includes the frequent blaming of ourselves and others.

see page 298 of the Big Red Book

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Chapter Eight Affirmations

My feelings are okay

I am human

I make mistakes, but I am not a mistake

I don't have to be perfect

It is okay to know who I am


see page 298 of the Big Red Book

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You! Yes, you! Quick go look in a mirror, and say:

"You are loving. You are lovable."

see page 321 of the Big Red Book

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Chapter Eight Exercises

Loving Parent Questions

  1. What is a Loving Parent? What is an Inner Child?
  2. If you can envision a Critical Parent inside, is it possible to envision a Loving Parent, who is there as well waiting to step forward? Are you willing to explore this possibility?
  3. Can you see how you took care of yourself as a child and how you can now use that care to nurture a Loving Parent within?
  4. If you were self-destructive as a child, how would a Loving Parent care for an abused or neglected child? Would you be willing to do these caring things for your Inner Child?
  5. Name a way you can meet your Loving Parent.
  6. What are five traits of a Loving Parent?

see page 327 of the Big Red Book

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Chapter Eight Exercises

Inner Child Affirmations

  1. I love my Inner Child unconditionally.
  2. I will protect my Inner Child to the best of my ability.
  3. I will take time to listen to my Inner Child and to follow through on promises.
  4. I will integrate my Inner Child into my life through play, creativity, and spirituality.
  5. I will take time to become my own Loving Parent.

see page 328 of the Big Red Book

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Chapter Eight Exercises

Inner Child Questions

  1. How does your Loving Parent communicate regularly with your Inner Child?
  2. How might you establish trust with your Inner Child?
  3. How do you let your Inner Child play regularly?
  4. How do you integrate your Inner Child into your feelings and decisions?
  5. How do you affirm your Inner Child or Inner Children?
  6. How does your Inner Child help you connect you with a Higher Power?
  7. Do you love your Inner Child unconditionally?
  8. How has your Inner Child sabotaged you from gettings things done?

see page 328 of the Big Red Book

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Affirmations for your Inner Child from Chapter 8 ==>>

Higher Power. Help me to be willing to recognize the Loving Parent inside of me. Help me integrate my Inner Child more actively into my daily life so that I remain awake spiritually. Grant me the courage to change the things I can. Grant me the wisdom of my Inner Child.

see page 329-330 of the Big Red Book

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Affirmations for Relationships ==>>

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Mirrorwork for Little Rachel ==>>

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Assertiveness Affirmations ==>>

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ACA Affirmations ==>>

1) I am learning it is ok to be different from other people & that being normal is no longer important to me!

2) I am gaining the courage to confront my problems.

3) I am learning to follow through & complete projects, set attainable goals, organize & pace myself.

4) I am learning that I have options that will allow me to make decisions.

5) I am learning to be truthful with myself & authentic with others that telling the truth won't hurt me to say, *I made a mistake* & that mistakes mean growth.

6) I am learning not to dwell on negatives or transfer my negatives to others.

7) I am learning to live & let live.

8) I am learning to have more confidence & believe in myself as well as accepting myself as I am not an under or over achiever.

9) I am learning to appreciate the little things in life & to enjoy life as it is, whatever the circumstances. I can have fun by assuming the responsibility for my fun.

10) I am learning to let go & turn things over to my Higher Power.

11) I am learning not to take myself so seriously.

12) I am learning to be more open & adaptable & not push people away, to be more trusting in intimate relationships, to avoid destructive relationships & to walk away from existing relationships that are unhealthy.

13) I am learning to live for myself & not for the approval of others.

14) I am learning not to control or save others.

15) I am learning when to be loyal, when not to be loyal & most of all to be loyal to myself.

16) I am learning to understand myself by listening to my inner feelings & avoiding compulsive behavior that seeks immediate gratification.

17) I am learning to stand up for myself by listening to my inner feelings & avoiding compulsive behavior that seeks immediate gratification.

18) I am significant to God.

19) I am learning that everything I need I have at this very moment.

20) I am the best I can be right now.


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Trait 5 ==>>

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Gifts and Talents ==>>

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Things to Do During a Panic

1) Breathe.

2) Take a brisk walk.

3) Call Jim (Write the phone numbers on your list) .

4) Call Nona if Jim’s not home. Go down my list of support people and keep calling.

5) Write in my journal.

6) Take a hot bath.

7) Write a hundred times, I’m safe. They can’t hurt me anymore.

8) Go for a run, or exercise.

9) Listen to soothing music.

10) Meditate, pray, or do yoga.

11) Draw a picture of how I feel.

12) Watch an old movie on TV.

13) Eat tomato soup or grilled cheese.

14) Start again at the top.

from Beginning to Heal (Revised Edition), A First Book for Men and Women Who Were Sexually Abused As Children – Ellen Bass, Laura Davis p. 26-27 (purchased on google play books)

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Step Two ACA affirmation - meditation exercise

The affirmation exercise can be done at home, at work or a place of your own choosing. Many adult children find a quiet place and turn off cell phones, televisions, or other distracting devices. Sitting in a relaxed condition, they breathe in and out slowly five to 10 times, concentrating on a comfortable spot in front of them. Glancing at the affirmations, they repeat each one slowly before closing their eyes for the meditation. For the best results, don't try to figure out the affirmation as you read it. Simply state it slowly and listen to the words and your voice. These affirmations can also be taken with you by jotting them down on notebook paper. Some ACA members tape them to a mirror at home.


1) By attending ACA meetings and working with my sponsor (or spiritual advisor) I am being restored to clarity and sanity.

2) I am understanding the effects of addiction and family dysfunction in my adult life today.

3) I am coming to believe that it was insane to think that I caused my parents' addiction or dysfunction. I was the child. They were the parents.

4) I am not unique.

5) I am not alone.

from pages 55-56 of the Yellow Workbook

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Step Three ACA Affirmations-Meditation Exercise

Affirmations: Let Go, Let God

  1. I am willing to consider some control in my life.
  2. I am willing to call someone when I feel the urge to control another's thoughts or actions.
  3. I believe that real choice comes from the God of my understanding rather than my illusions of control or orderliness.
  4. I desire real choice and discernment.
  5. I surrender my family to God as I understand God.
  6. I surrender my self-hate.

Third Step Prayer

Many ACA members use the Third Step Prayer to formalize their Third Step and to move on to Step Four. Some of us say this prayer with another person. This person can be your sponsor, counselor, spiritual advisor, or close friend. We offer this action for the purpose of learning to ask someone to participate in your new life. Sharing a prayer with another person lets us know we are making a connection to life and others in a meaningful way. Here is the ACA Third Step Prayer.

God. I am willing to surrender my fears and to place my will and my life in your care one day at a time. Grant me the wisdom to know the difference between the things I can and cannot change. Help me to remember that I can ask for help. I am not alone. Amen.

Step Three Spiritual Principles:

Willingness and Accepting Help

from pages 68-69 of the Yellow Workbook (Twelve Steps of Adult Children)

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Step 3 ==>>

Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understand God.


"Love, Thy Will Be Done"



Love... Thy will be done
I can no longer hide, I can no longer run
No longer can I resist Your guiding light
That gives me the power to keep up the fight

Oh Lord, Love... Thy will be done
Since I have found U, my life has just begun
And I see all of Your creations as one perfect complex
No one less beautiful or more special than the next
We are all blessed and so wise to accept
Thy will, Love, be done

Love... Thy will be mine
And make me strive for the glorious and divine
I could not be more, more satisfied (Satisfied)
Even when there's no peace outside my window, there's peace inside
And that why I no longer run (I no longer run)
Love... Thy will be done

Love... Thy will be done
I can no longer hide, I can no longer run
Oh Love... Thy will be done
Thy will, Love, be done

Oh, no longer can I resist (No)
The guiding light (Guiding light)
The light that gives me power to keep up the fight
I couldn't be more satisfied (No)
Even when there's no peace outside my window, there is peace inside
And that's why I can no longer run
Love, thy will be done
Love, thy will be done
Love, thy will be done

Love... Thy will be done
I can no longer hide, I can no longer run
Oh Love... Thy will be done
Thy will, Love, be done

Oh Love... Thy will be done
I can no longer hide, I can no longer run
Oh Love... Thy will be done (Sing it)
Thy will, Love, be done (Glory, glory, glory)
Thy will, Love, be done (Glory)
Thy will, Love, be done

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ACA Step 1 from the Yellow Workbook ==>>

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ACA Step 2 from the Yellow Workbook ==>>

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ACA Step 3 from the Yellow Workbook ==>>

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Auric Healing and Protection ==>>

Auric Healing and Protection Script


Retrieved May 13, 2018.

Auric Healing and Protection Script

© 2002 by Craig R. Lang CHt


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Fearful Emotions Treatment ==>>

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Forgiveness Treatment ==>>

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Friends Treatment ==>>

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Love and Intimacy Treatment ==>>

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Money and Prosperity Treatment ==>>

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Remove Fear of What Others Think ==>>

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Sexuality Treatment ==>>

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Soul Mate Meditation ==>>

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Strengthening My Recovery April 17 ==>>

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Hypnosis for Visual Floaters ==>>

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Work Treatment ==>>

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Beyond Survival: Practicing Self-Love ==>>

Beyond Survival: Practicing Self-Love

from Chapter 15 of the Big Red Book

Mirror Exercises

For these exercises, find a quiet place with a full-length mirror or a mirror large enough to show your face and shoulders.

The First Exercise is known as silent mirror work. In this exercise, the person stares at his or her image in the mirror and remains silent while noticing any feelings or thoughts. The person looks at his or her hair, forehead, lips, throat, chin, and so on. With a notepad nearby, the person writes down any feelings, thoughts, or words that might arise. Also notice posture, breathing, and the location of your hands. The way that we look at ourselves and carry ourselves tells us a lot about how we view ourselves.

The final part of the exercise involves looking into one's own eyes for 60 seconds or more and then writing down any thoughts or feelings that arise as well.

Repeat the silent mirror exercise for at least seven days and share your writing with a sponsor or ACA friend.

The Second Exercise involves looking into your eyes in a mirror and repeating an affirmation. The affirmation can be "I love you, ____________________(your name). I am a human being. I am a good person. I am a decent person. I am here for me." There are other affirmations. You can add your own. Do this exercise for seven days and write down any thoughts or feelings that arise. Share your thoughts and feelings with your sponsor or ACA group. You can also tape the affirmations to the mirror and read them in between exercises.

You might also combine the two exercises and look into the mirror before repeating an affirmation. Write down thoughts, feelings, or words that come to mind as you work this exercise for several days.


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Long-Term Trauma ==>>

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Step 4 Gentleness Breaks

The ACA Fourth Step involves a balanced look at our family of origin and our own behavior and thoughts. The emotions, events, and self-blame stirred by this Step can seem overwhelming for some. As you work Step Four, we urge you to be rigorously honest, holding nothing back, but we also remind you to be gentle with yourself. Remember you are not alone, and you have not done or thought anything that someone else has not done or thought. You have character assets and abilities that help balance disturbing aspects of your life.

In Step Four, we ask you to balance any shameful or fearful memories that might arise with the knowledge that you have honesty and courage in your life. ACA is not an easy program to work, but your courageis apparent and show in working this Step and tegh Twelve Steps of ACA. Adult children have an inner strength that has always been there. dThat inner strength, which some choose to call a Higher Power or Divine Spirit, is with you now as you face this liberating inventory of your life. We suggest that you remain focused during this process, but take gentleness breaks and stay in contact with your sponsor or counselor. During this break read the Eleventh Promise of the ACA promises out loud. Also read the ACA Fourth Step Prayer. (You will find the ACA promises at the front of the Workbook).

Promise Eleven: "With help from our ACA support group, we will slowly release our dysfunctional behaviors."

Fourth Step Prayer:

Divine Creator. Help me to be rigorously honest and to care for myself during this Fourth Step process. Let me practice gentleness and not abandon myself on this spiritual journey. Help me remember that I have attributes, and that I can ask for forgiveness. I am not alone. I can ask for hlep. Amen.

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Self-honesty and Courage

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Step Four Praise Exercise ==>>

Praise Exercise

I am willing to learn to praise myself and to accept praise from others.

You are strong. I am strong.

You are sensitive. I am sensitive.

You are willing. I am willing.

You are intelligent. I am intelligent.

You are compassionate. I am compassionate.

You are courteous. I am courteous.

You are honest. I am honest.

You are creative. I am creative.

You are loving. I am loving.

You are spiritual. I am spiritual.

You are tenacious. I am tenacious.

You are accepting. I am accepting.

You are kind. I am kind.

You are an ACA member. I am an ACA member.


I am empathetic. (showing an ability to understand and share the feelings of another.)




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Step Four Gentleness Break

During this gentleness break, read the Twelve Promises of ACA listed at the front of the workbook.

Affirmation: The promises of ACA are for me, and they are being fulfilled in my life. I am discovering my real identity. I am facing shame and uncomfortable feelings without running or acting-out. I have positive attributes that I am discovering. God, as I understand God, hears my prayers. I can ask for help.

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Divine Spirit, may the best thing happen in this situation. Amen.
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Journey Through Step 8 Become Willing to Make Amends

I have separated.

Now I find the courage and strength to live in the world as a complete human being, capable of giving and receiving love, of creating out of a sense of wholeness.

My renewed inner parents reassure me by being consistent and loving parents. I carry these new parents inside me as the former were gently escorted away by my Higher Power.

These new parents remind me I am safe and loved.

I internalize the strength of these new parents. I feel securely held by a sense of parental power which gives logic and structure to my life. With this foundation and strength I am able to build a Self and create loving intimacy through my own sense of power.

The 12 Steps and the Serenity Prayer remind me I can receive real power and apply it in my life to things I am able to change.

My Higher Power is accessible and ready to direct my life in a meaningful, loving way.

I accept and reunite with the vulnerable child I kept hidden inside. By doing this, I begin to heal the broken pieces of my shattered self and become a whole human being capable of interacting in the world with confidence and trust.

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Mindfulness of Emotions

We often start to learn mindfulness skills by focusing our attention on our breath, our bodies, the environment or activities.  Being mindful of emotions helps us to stand back from the emotion, understand it, not to fear it or struggle against it, and it can have the added benefit of reducing the distress (although the aim is to learn to accept the experience, rather than lessen the distress).

Set aside a few minutes when you can be quiet and won’t be disturbed.

Start by bringing your attention to your breath.  Notice your breathing as you slowly breathe in and out, perhaps imagining you have a balloon in your belly, noticing the sensations in your belly as the balloon inflates on the in-breath, and deflates on the out-breath.

Notice the feelings, and what it feels like.

Name the emotion:  

What is it?

What word best describes what you are feeling?

Angry, sad, anxious, irritated, scared, frustrated...

Accept the emotion.  It’s a normal body reaction.  It can be helpful to understand how it came about – what it was, the set of circumstances that contributed to you feeling this way.  Don’t condone or judge the emotion.  Simply let it move through you without resisting it, struggling against it, or encouraging it.

Investigate the emotion.  

How intensely do you feel it?  

How are you breathing?

What are you feeling in your body?  Where do you feel it?  

What’s your posture like when you feel this emotion?  

Where do you notice muscle tension?  

What’s your facial expression?  What does your face feel like?  

Is anything changing? (nature, position, intensity)

What thoughts or judgements do you notice? Just notice those thoughts.  Allow them to come into your mind, and allow them to pass.  Any time you find that you’re engaging with the thoughts – judging them or yourself for having them, believing them, struggling against them, just notice, and bring your attention back to your breathing, and to the physical sensations of the emotion.

If any other emotions come up, if anything changes, simply notice and repeat the steps above.  Just notice that the feelings change over time.

As you become more practised, you can use this mindfulness technique when you feel more intense emotion.
© Carol Vivyan 2010. Permission to use for therapy purposes.


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Tradition One Meditation

from the BRB page 496

Higher Power. I am your trusted servant seeking to support my ACA group and its primary purpose. Please remind me that the life of my program and my own recovery depends upon my willingness to put the group’s welfare above my own will. Help me recognize unity.


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Tradition Two Meditation

from the BRB page 502

Higher Power. I understand that you make your voice heard in a group conscience. I ask you to remind me that the life of my program and, therefore, my own recovery depends upon my willingness to put the group’s welfare above my own will. Where I disagree with the common view of my fellows in service, allow me to state my case honestly and respectfully. Allow me to listen to and consider the views of others. May I state my view and support all group decisions, including the ones I might disagree with. Your will, not mine, be done.


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Tradition Three Meditation

from the BRB page 507

Higher Power. Help me recognize my desire to recover from the effects of growing up in a dysfunctional home. Give me willingness to attend meetings to recover from these effects. I participate in ACA because I want to change and help others. Thank you for leading me to these rooms where I belong. Thank you for giving me the courage to walk in an ACA meeting and stay and find my place. I am finally home. I finally know where I fit.


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To Joy! ==>>

Spiritual Support

Pour out your heart to the Lord. Read the entire Book of Psalms over and over. Look for passages where David talked about crying unto the Lord. Underline passages about God's steadfast love. Immerse yourself in the affirmations of God's care. Come to believe that God gives unconditional love rather than the conditional love human beings give.

from page 184 of Healing for Adult Children of Alcoholics by Sara Hines Martin


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To Joy! ==>>

Affirm Yourself

Use the book "Daily Affirmations for Adult Children of Alcoholics" by Rokelle Lerner as a guide "for the renewing of your mind." Distortions take place within the perceptions of family members in the alcoholic home - perceptions toward oneself and toward reality, in general. ACAs can have a lot of self-pity. Their self-esteem can be subterranean. They are filled with should messages.They feel victims and feel they have no options. They need to put new material into the 'tapes' within their minds.

Write out affirmation statements and repeat them throughout the day. Here are some examples: I am a person of worth. I can cope. I am OK.

David Semands, author of Healing for Damaged Emotions tells that in the British navy, a "still" is blown, just before any combat. A whistle blows and a moment of silence follows. Each person repeats these statements to himself: I am British. I am trained. I can do it.

Dr. Seamands suggests that in a moment of crisis or anxiety we blow the "Christian still." It would go thus: I am a child of God. I am equipped by the Holy Spirit. I can handle whatever comes.

from pages 184-185 of Healing for Adult Children of Alcoholics by Sara Hines Martin.


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To Joy! ==>>

Expect Miracles

A devotional that I read pointed out that if we start looking for a certain thing, such as the color blue, blue items will start jumping out at us. If we learn a new word, we will hear it again within twenty-four hours because our ears will pick it up. Likewise, if we look for miracles, we will see them. Think of the difference within your own mental and physical responses when you think hopefully, prayerfully. Image yourself and your loved ones as whole and healthy emotionally.

from pages 184-185 of Healing for Adult Children of Alcoholics by Sara Hines Martin.

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To Joy! ==>>

Erase Expectations

This really sounds contradictory to the preceding suggestion! (see Expect Miracles) But when people expect certain things to happen, they can set themselves up for disappointment if they do not happen. Frustration, discouragement, and anger can follow. To erase expectations means to accept whatever is happening (acknowledging your powerlessness to change other people and/or situations). Focus on developing a positive attitude. Then, when something good happens, you can receive it as a nice surprise and a miracle. In everything give thanks. The human mind cannot think of two things at a time. When you find yourself caught in obsessive thinking, or when the weight of your burdens threatens to overwhelm you, train yourself to give thanks - even for little things. Sometimes ACAs feel that all looks bleak and cannot think of things to be thankful for.

The wife of an active alcoholic attended her first Al-Anon meeting at Thanksgiving. The leader called on each person to tell one thing she was thankful for. When this woman's turn came, she felt so discouraged she said she could not think of anything. "Do you have ingrown toenails?" the leader challenged. The group burst into laughter as the new woman shook her head. "Then give thanks for that!" the leader said. The woman did and joined the others in laughter.

from Healing for Adult Children of Alcoholics by Sara Hines Martin.

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To Joy! ==>>

Cooperate with Nature

Catecholamines are biochemicals that the brain secretes when a person is under stress of any type. Catecholamines actually collect within the body, causing physical illnesses. Endorphins are the natural tranquilizers are the natural painkillers that the brain secretes when a person experiences pleasure in thought or behavior. Production of endorphins flushes out catecholamines. Do everything you can to increase the flow of endorphins in your system.

Physical exercise, meditation, positive thinking, listening to music, looking at a beautiful picture, focusing on nature as you drive, reading positive and inspirational materials, singing a hymn, reciting affirmative statements  mentally, laughing, playing with animals and/or children, doing a hobby, sharing your feelings with another person, and praying are some examples. Whatever brings a pleasurable response for you will produce endorphins. You will feel more relaxed, more positive, and actually be healthier physically. You will be better able to cope with whatever stresses exist in your life.

Say several peaceful statements to yourself.  "Be still" and "I trust in God" are good examples. Notice what happens to your bodily responses when you make those statements. Do you feel yourself getting calmer and more powerful in contrast to feeling out of control or powerless?

Now say, "Things are really hectic." "Everything's a mess." Notice your bodily responses. We can have control over our minds and our bodies by the words and thoughts we put into our minds. Notice the difference in the words "peace" and "panic". Hearing certain words produces a definite emotional response within. Keep calming statements handy - in writing or in your mind - to pull out when you feel your anxiety levels rising.  Put laughter therapy into your daily schedule. Check out books from the library of collections on humor, and laugh for five minutes before going to bed each night.

We cannot control the actions of another person, but we can choose how to think. We can retrain our minds to think positively.

Follow good nutritional guidelines. Many ACAs become addicted to food, sweets, caffeine, or chocolate.

We can have control over our minds and our bodies by the words and thoughts we put into our minds.

from Healing for Adult Children of Alcoholics by Sara Hines Martin.

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To Joy! ==>>

Choose Faith

Even if it seems as if God is not working in our lives, we have two choices: faith or not faith. We can choose, as an act of the will, to follow faith. Choosing faith is like turning your cup right side up and then looking to God to fill it. What is there to lose? Repeat the Serenity Prayer.

"God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference."

Let joy be your expectation! Let us claim the abundant life that Christ came to give!

from Healing for Adult Children of Alcoholics by Sara Hines Martin.

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Step Ten reminds you to focus on the present and live in the moment.

{___your name here_____}, you live one day at a time in ACA. By living one day at a time, you are free to focus on yourself and handle the challenges of life as they come. Step Ten helps you avoid feeling overwhelmed by staring too long at the past or obsessing on the future. One day at a time you make progress in your emotional, physical, and spiritual life. Your past can be your greatest asset, but you remember to focus on the present. You begin to actively participate in your life and in the lives of others seeking fulfilling relationships. As the Twelve Promises of ACA state, you learn how to have fun and play. You fear authority figures less, and you discover your real identity. You feel more connected to yourself, and you believe that a God of your understanding is available to you. You are learning how to set boundaries and how to keep them. In relationships, you are learning to choose people who love themselves and can be responsible for themselves. Gradually and slowly you are releasing your dysfunctional behaviors with the help of your ACA group and your Higher Power. These are ACA's great promises, which are being filled among you daily.

{___your name here_____}, you are learning to love yourself and extract Love from within yourself to share with Life. Real choice means you give up control and trust your Higher Power to provide the love and help you need to live with flexibility. Real choice is a spiritual continuum beginning at denial and leading to self-honesty, humility, wisdom, and finally discernment. Step Ten is part of that continuum of spiritual discernment. You inventory your motives and trust your Higher Power, so answers begin to emerge for you. Solutions will appear. By practicing Step Ten and all the ACA Steps, you intuitively learn how to address problems which once baffled you. You learn to avoid being enmeshed in the unhealthy dependent problems of others. Gossip is less appealing because you don't have the need to become transfixed on the problems of others to avoid looking at yourself. You trust yourself to stand steady and to be patient. You recognize manipulation - your own and others' - more quickly and take a different path. You learn to inventory your motives before taking action. Sometimes you take no action which is the best action. These are the elements of choice and discernment found in Step Ten.

(from pages 150-151 out of the Yellow Workbook, Twelve Steps of Adult Children)

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Step Ten Guide

from page 158 of 12 Steps of Adult Children Yellow Workbook

Here are a few Step Ten questions we ask ourselves daily or weekly. These questions help us live the ACA program in all areas of our lives. Step Ten keeps us mindful of our program.

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AA Prayers ==>>

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AA Promises ==>>

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AA Vision for You ==>>

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What Skills Should We Encourage in Children

How to communicate and get on with others

How to manage their feelings

How to be independent

How to solve problems

Learning how to reparent myself and my family from Triple P Parenting at my school, LiT

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Characteristics of Healthy Relationships

How can these be developed in my relationship?

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Healing Co-Dependency (Self-Love-Deficit-Disorder) Affirmations
Rachel xoxo

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Rachel's Mission Statement ==>>
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Strengthening My Recovery ==>>

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The Set Aside Prayer:

"Dear God please help me to set aside everything I think I know about [people. place or thing] so I may have an open mind and a new experience.  Please help me to see the truth about [people. place or thing]?. AMEN." (This prayer comes from the Chapter to the Agnostic, primarily pages 47 and 48).?


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First Step Prayer

Dear Lord, Help me to see and admit that I am powerless over my alcoholism. Help me to understand how my alcoholism has led to unmanageability in my life. Help me this day to understand the true meaning of powerlessness. Remove from me all denial of my alcoholism. (This prayer is developed from the chapter, More About Alcoholism)



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Second Step Prayer

Heavenly Father, I am having trouble with personal relationships. I can’t control my emotional nature. I am prey to misery and depression. I can’t make a living. I feel useless. I am full of fear. I am unhappy. I can’t seem to be of real help to others. I know in my heart that only you can restore me to sanity if I am just willing to stop doubting your power. I humbly ask that you help me to understand that it is more powerful to believe than not to believe and that you are either everything or nothing. (p. 52:2, 52:3, 53:1, 53:2)



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3rd Step Prayer:

"God, I offer myself to thee - to build with me and do with me as Thou wilt. Relieve me of the bondage of self, that I may better do Thy will. Take away my difficulties, that victory over them may bear witness to those I would help of Thy Power, Thy Love and Thy Way of life. May I do Thy will always!" (63:2 original manuscript) 



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A Pre-Inventory prayer:

"God, please help me to honestly take stock. Help me to search out the flaws in my make-up which caused my failure. Help me to see where resentment has plagued me and resulted in spiritual malady, but more importantly help me to understand my part in these resentments. Help me to resolutely look for my own mistakes and to understand where I had been selfish, dishonest, self-seeking and frightened. Please help me to be searching and fearless in my endeavor to write my inventory." (p. 64:2, 64:3, 67:2)



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A 4th Step Resentment Prayer:

"God, Please help me to be free of anger and to see that the world and its people have dominated me. Show me that the wrong-doing of others, fancied or real, has the power to actually kill me. Help me to master my resentments by understanding that the people who wrong me were perhaps spiritually sick. Please help me show those I resent the same Tolerance, Pity and Patience that I would cheerfully grant a sick friend.** Help me to see that this is a sick man. Father, please show me how I can be helpful to him and save me from being angry. Lord, help me to avoid retaliation or argument. I know I can’t be helpful to all people, but at least show me how to take a kindly and tolerant view of each and every one. Thy will be done."(66:2, 66:3, 66:4, 67:0, 67:1)

**Dear God, I have a resentment towards a person that I want to be free of. So, I am asking you to give this person everything I want for myself. Help me to feel compassionate understanding and love for this person. I pray that they will receive everything they need. Thank you God for your help and strength with this resentment.  (BB, Freedom from Bondage:  552)

These instructions are for the above prayer (Big Book, Freedom from Bondage, p. 552):

'If you have a resentment you want to be free of, if you will pray for the person or the thing that you resent, you will be free. If you will ask in prayer for everything you want for yourself to be given to them, you will be free...Even when you don't really want it for them, and your prayers are only words and you don't mean it, go ahead and do it anyway. Do it every day for two weeks and you will find you have come to mean it and to want it for them, and you will realize that where you used to feel bitterness and resentment and hatred, you now feel compassionate understanding and love.'

You can, also, include the Freedom from Bondage Prayer in the 4th Step Resentment Prayer.



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An Example of Fear Prayer:

"God, thank you for helping me be honest enough to see this truth about myself and now that you have shown me the truth about my fears, please remove these fears from me. Lord, please help me outgrow my fears and direct my attention to what you would have me be. Father, demonstrate through me and help me become that which you would have me be. Help me do thy will always, Amen."(68:3)



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An Example of Pre-Sex Inventory Prayer:

"God, please help me to be free of fear as I attempt to shine the spotlight of truth across my past sex relations. Lord, please show me where my behavior has harmed others and help me to see the truth these relationships hold for me. Help me see where I have been at fault and what I should have done differently." (From the thoughts on pg. 69)

"God, help me review my own conduct over the years past. Show me where I have been selfish, dishonest, or inconsiderate. Show me whom I have hurt and where I have unjustifiably aroused jealousy, suspicion or bitterness. Help me to see where I was at fault and what I should have done instead. Help me to be fearless and searching in my endeavor to write my sexual inventory." (69:1)

A Sex Prayer:

"Father, please help me mold my sex ideals and help me to live up to them. Help me be willing to grow toward my ideals and help me be willing to make amends where I have done harm. Lord, please show me what to do in each specific matter, and be the final judge in each situation. Help me avoid hysterical thinking or advice." (69:2, 69:3)

"Father, please Grace me with guidance in each questionable situation, sanity, and strength to do the right thing. If sex becomes very troublesome, quiet my imperious urge, help me not to yield and keep me from heartache as I throw myself the harder into helping others. Help me think of their needs and help me work for them. Amen."(69:2, 69:3, 70:2)



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A Pre-Fifth Step Prayer:

God, please help me to complete my housecleaning by admitting to another human being the exact nature of my wrongs. Please remove any fears I have about this step and show me how completion of it will remove my egotism and fear. Help me to see how this step builds my character through humility, fearlessness and honesty. Direct me to the right person who will keep my confidence and fully understand and approve what I am driving at. Then help me to pocket my pride and go to it, illuminating every twist of character, every dark cranny of the past so I may complete this step and begin to feel near to you." (72:1, 72:2, 73:0, 74:2, 75:2)

Fifth Step Prayer

Higher Power, Thank you for helping me complete my housecleaning. I can now look the world in the eye. I can be alone at perfect peace and ease. My fears have fallen from me. I have begun to feel your nearness. I have begun to have a spiritual experience. I feel I am on the Broad Highway, walking hand in hand with the Spirit of the Universe. (75:2)

A Quiet Hour Prayer:

"God, Thank You for giving me the strength, faith and courage I needed to get through my 5th Step. I thank you from the bottom of my heart for helping me to know you better, by showing me what has been blocking me from you. Father, please show me if I have omitted anything and help me to honestly see if my stones are properly in place or if I have skimped in any area of this work."(75:3)



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A 6th Step prayer:

"God, Thank you for removing my fear and for showing me the truth about myself. Father, I need your help to become willing to let go of the things in me which continue to block me off from you. Please grant me your Grace Lord and make me willing to have these objectionable characteristics, defects and shortcomings removed." (76:1)

Sixth Step Prayer

Dear God, I am ready for Your help in removing from me the defects of character which I now realize are an obstacle to my recovery. Help me to continue being honest with myself & guide me toward spiritual & mental health. (76:1)



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Seventh Step Prayer

"My Creator, I am now willing that you should have all of me, good & bad. I pray that you now remove from me every single defect of character which stands in the way of my usefulness to you & my fellows. Grant me strength, as I go out from here to do Your bidding." (76:2)



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A Pre - Eighth Step Prayer:

"God, Please remove my Fears and show me your truth. Show me all the harms I have caused with my behavior and help me be willing to make amends to one and all. Help me to be willing to go to any lengths for victory over alcohol."(76:3)



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A 9th Step Prayer :

"God, with regard to this amend, give me the strength, courage and direction to do the right thing, no matter what the personal consequences may be. Help me not to shrink from anything. Help me not to delay if it can be avoided. Help me to be sensible, tactful, considerate and humble without being servile or scraping."(79:1, 83:3)

A 9th Step prayer for the Spouse:

"God, please show me how to make amends to my Spouse. Father , Help me to keep my Spouse’s happiness Uppermost in my mind as I try, with your Grace, to make this relationship right. Amen" (82:1)

A 9Th Step Prayer for the Family:

"God, please show me how to find the way of Patience, Tolerance, Kindness and Love in my heart, my Mind and my Soul. Lord, show me how to demonstrate these principles to my family and all those about me. Amen." (83:1)



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A 10th Step prayer for Growth and Effectiveness:

"God, please help me Watch for Selfishness, Dishonesty, Resentment and Fear. When these crop up in me, help me to immediately ask you to remove them from me and help me discuss these feelings with someone. Father, help me to quickly make amends if I have harmed anyone and help me to resolutely turn my thoughts to someone I can Help. Help me to be Loving and Tolerant of everyone today. Amen"(84:2)

Tenth Step Prayer

My Higher Power?, My daily prayer is to best serve you,
I pray I may continue to grow in understanding & effectiveness;
Help me to watch for selfishness, dishonesty, resentment and fear;
Help me to be willing to have You remove them at once;
I must be willing to discuss them with someone immediately;
I will make amends quickly if I have harmed anyone;
And then I will turn my thoughts toward helping ?someone else;
Please help me to remember to practice love and tolerance of others. (84:2)

Tenth Step Amends Prayer?

"God, please forgive me for my failings today. I know that because of my failings, I was not able to be as effective as I could have been for you. Please forgive me and help me live thy will better today.  I ask you now to show me how to correct the errors I have just outlined. Guide me and direct me. Please remove my arrogance and my fear. Show me how to make my relationships right and grant me the humility and strength to do thy will."(86:1)



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The 11Th Step Prayers:?

A Prayer On Awakening:

"God please direct my thinking and keep my thoughts divorced from self – pity, dishonest or self-seeking motives.  Please keep my thought life clear from wrong motives and help me employ my mental faculties, that my thought-life might be placed on a higher plane, the plane of inspiration." (86:2)

A Morning Prayer:

"God, should I find myself agitated, doubtful or indecisive today, please give me inspiration, help me to have an intuitive thought or a decision about this problem I face. Help me not to struggle, instead, help me to relax and take it easy. Help me know what I should do and keep me mindful, that you are running the show.  Free me from my bondage of self. Thy will be done always." (86:3)

A Morning Prayer:

"God, please show me all through this day, what my next step is to be and please grace me with whatever I need to take care of the problems in my life today. I ask especially that you free me from the bondage of self-will."(87:1)

An 11Th Step Nightly Review Prayer:?

"God, help me to constructively review my day. Where was I resentful, selfish, dishonest or afraid? Do I owe an apology? Have I kept something to myself which should be discussed with another person at once? Was I kind and loving toward all? What could I have done better? Was I thinking of myself most of the time? Or was I thinking of what I could do for others, of what I could pack into the stream of life? Please forgive me for my harms and wrongs today and let me know corrective measures I should be take.?" (86:2)



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Twelfth Step Prayer

Dear God, Having had a spiritual experience, I must now remember that "faith without works is dead." And PRACTICAL EXPERIENCE shows that nothing will so much insure immunity from drinking as intensive work with other alcoholics. So, God, please help me to carry this message to other alcoholics! Provide me with the guidance and wisdom to talk with another alcoholic because I can help when no one else can. Help me secure his confidence and remember he is ill. (89:1)


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Cognitive behavioral therapy for childhood anxiety disorders

From Yale University

My hope is that these techniques could be easily applied to our Inner Child work that we do in Recovery.

Higher Power Blessings!

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CBT for Social Anxiety Disorder: Using downward arrow and thought challenging techniques

From Judith Johnson

My hope is that these techniques could be easily applied to our Inner Child work that we do in Recovery.

Higher Power Blessings!

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CBT Alternative Anxiety Meditation | Music | Guided | Relief | Depression | Deep Relaxation Hypnosis

From Attuned to Love

My hope is that these techniques could be easily applied to our Inner Child work that we do in Recovery.

Higher Power Blessings!

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AA (Alcoholics Anonymous) Promises ==>>

AA Promises

1. If we are painstaking about this phase of our development, we will be amazed before we are half way through.

2. We are going to know a new freedom and a new happiness.

3. We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it.

4. We will comprehend the word serenity and we will know peace.

5. No matter how far down the scale we have gone, we will see how our experience can benefit others.

6. That feeling of uselessness and self-pity will disappear.

7. We will lose interest in selfish things and gain interest in our fellows.

8. Self-seeking will slip away.

9. Our whole attitude and outlook upon life will change.

10. Fear of people and of economic insecurity will leave us.

11. We will intuitively know how to handle situations which used to baffle us.

12. We will suddenly realize that God is doing for us what we could not do for ourselves.

Are these extravagant promises? We think not. They are being fulfilled among us – sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly. They will always materialize if we work for them. – the Big Book online, pages 83 and 84, PDF version. Audio version. Free of charge.

AA Promises page updated Tuesday, March 10th, Twenty 20. Keep Coming Back.

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ACA Serenity Prayer ==>>

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We surrender to our inability to change the past and to our powerlessness to control the future. That leaves us with real life in the present. Living in the here and now is another fundamental spiritual concept offered in ACA.
from the Big Red Book p xxii
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To manifest recovery as adult children we need to embrace where fears, misguided perceptions, and distorted thoughts have taken us. The Laundry List will offer that framework. It will help us see and explore how feelings have propelled us into isolation, how we often live as victims, not recognizing choices. We will see how our low self-esteem has us judging ourselves mercilessly, giving others the benefit of the doubt, and tolerating inappropriate behavior.
from the Big Red Book p xxi
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Adult children are survivors and have taken a lot of pride in that identification. Yet I think we all deserve a lot more than that in our lives. ACA is the path to offer that to us. It is not necessarily an easy path. At times, it can be scary, at times painful. But hang on to the vision of where it leads you. Pay attention to the process, but remember to have fun. Recovery is not about perfection. It is in the becoming that we experience the promises of recovery. Learn to validate yourself by becoming your own Loving Parent. Don't judge recovery or yourself. Acknowledge the little steps along the way. In doing so, you will move from shame to self-worth, from secrecy to honesty, loneliness to connection with self and others, and from silence to having a voice.
from the Big Red Book p xxiv
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Resentment ==>> From the Big Book for Alcoholics Anonymous p. 552
"He said, in effect: 'If you have a resentment you want to be free of, if you will pray for the person or the thing that you resent, you will be free. If you will ask in prayer for everything you want for yourself to be given to them, you will be free. Ask for their health, their prosperity, their happiness, and you will be free. Even when you don't really want it for them and your prayers are only words and you don't mean it, go ahead and do it anyway. Do it every day for two weeks, and you will find you have come to mean it and to want it for them, and you will realize that where you used to feel bitterness and resentment and hatred, you now feel compassionate understanding and love.'"
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Acceptance ==>> From the Big Book for Alcoholics Anonymous p 420
Acceptance is the key to my relationship with God today. I never just sit and do nothing while waiting for Him to tell me what to do. Rather, I do whatever is in front of me to be done, and I leave the results up to Him; however it turns out, that's God's will for me.
Acceptance is the key to my relationship with God today. I never just sit and do nothing while waiting for God to tell me what to do. Rather, I do whatever is in front of me to be done, and I leave the results up to God; however it turns out, that's God's will for me.
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Strengthening My Recovery ==>>

On this day I give what I am not meant to control over to the care of my Higher Power. In its place I feel a greater freedom of choice than I have ever felt before.

August 17

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The Stages of Recovery

Most people recovering from addictions and other disorders can recover more sucessfully by first stabilizing these for a time, since otherwise these problems are usually distractions from being able to focus on ACA recovery issues and work. We call this stabilization period Stage One recovery work, which may take from several months to years to complete.

Many others may have no particular addictions or disorders and come to a recovery perspective because they are hurting or even "bottoming out" from emotional pain and having desire to change. These can usually enter directly into ACA and trauma effects recovery work, which we call Stage Two, and which usually takes a number of years to complete. The goals of Stage Two work include: 1) realizing our True Self, 2) grieving our ungrieved hurts, losses, and traumas, 3) finding and fulfilling our healthy needs, and 4) working through our core recovery issues.

The final one, Stage Three recovery, is about refining our relationship with self, others, and God from a spiritual perspective. It usually becomes easier to realize a loving relationship with our Higher Power once we have done most of our Stage Two recovery work. This is because the false self or ego cannot experientially relate to or know God, and the only part of us that can do this is our True Self, which we come to know in our Stage Two work. While the false self may at best try to intellectualize a relationship with God, our True Self does it from its heart, with fewer words needed.

(from p. xxviii of the Big Red Book for Adult Children of Alcoholics/Dysfunctional Families)

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August 24

"It is my bias that no one deserves to live a life of fear and shame." BRB p. xviii

Many ACAs go from blaming, shaming, complaining, and condemning ourselves and others to finally learning to name what is really going on. By doing so, we begin to come out of our victim and/or victimizer roles. We ask our Higher Power to help us remove and release our unhealthy behaviors, thoughts, and feelings. We let go of the justifications we created in our minds for our actions, thoughts, and emotions. Yes, we experienced abuse or neglect as children, and maybe as adults, but we know that does not excuse our dysfunctional behavior now.

As we gain strength and recover, we become healing survivors and then thrivers. We gradually and sometimes more quickly, develop new capacities for healthy wellbeing in our lives. We learn that we deserve a happy, full life. We learn that we have always deserved this. We don't have to do anything to be worthy, we just ARE.

As thrivers, we now know that our Higher Power is there for us. We learn to have unconditional love for ourselves and others.

On this day I acknowledge that I am worthy and deserving of a happy, full life.

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Becoming our own Loving Parent - reparenting ourselves - requires that we accept the reality of the Inner Child. The child within is our original identity which knows how to love and trust freely. We become willing to consistently seek out and integrate the Inner Child into our lives. By making the effort, the child within becomes our guide to feelings, creativity, and spirituality. Through reparenting, we learn to listen for the child within. We can restage our childhood and teen years with gentleness by being a Loving Parent to ourselves. With the help or our ACA friends, we learn how to fill in the nurturing and attention we did not receive as children.

(from page 296 of the Big Red Book)

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Centering Our Thoughts ==>> I will center my thoughts on a Higher Power.
I will surrender all to this power within me.
I will become a soldier for this power, feeling the might of the spiritual army as it exists in my life today.
I will allow a wave of spiritual union to connect me through my gratitude, obedience and discipline to this Higher Power.
Let me allow this power to lead me through the orders of the day.
May the steps I take today strengthen my words and deeds, may I know that the message I carry is mine to share, given freely by this power greater than myself.

If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to email me: send mail
Thank you for visiting. Higher Power blessings.

ACA Recovery Resources