Recording for December 18, 2014

(week 155) 18 December 2014 12 Step Study Big Book All Addictions Workshop

Big Book from page 64: ‘Therefore we started upon a personal inventory…’ until beginning of last paragraph on page 65 ‘We went back through our lives.’
Stephanie is taking us through the BB with the Hyannis Method because that is how she did it.
There are other ways to do the process and this is one way. It is not necessarily better than other ways but it is the way Stephanie did it and so it is the way she is giving over the Fourth Step to us.

Especially if you have done Step Four before, try to keep an open mind and follow instructions to the best of your ability. If you have any questions or get stalled or stuck due to any fears, do not hesitate to call Stephanie on her cell: 617/ 774-7916,
or text her cell ( she is very text-friendly)
or email her at: stephaniew324@gmail.com
This is what she is here for as our sponsor, to help us move along.
And, every time you pick up a pencil to do Fourth Step writing, first say or repeat (if you got interrupted) the Third Step prayer and the Set-Aside prayer so that you’re not going into this writing with ego but, rather, asking God to help us discover our resentments and partner with us in doing this inventory- together, not on our own. Because, if we do this alone, we will just turn in on ourselves and use our inventory list like a ‘cuddly teddy bear’ to hold onto as the go-to excuse to isolate.

Dec. 25 workshop- Step Two Summary (will be recorded) and anything we’ve been doing ’til now on Step Four.
Jan. 1 workshop- Step Three Summary
Jan. 8 workshop- continuing with Step Four: 5 ‘people resentments’, their causes (each one on a separate paper) in 6-9 words, with any feelings involved written down on back. Then ‘Affects my’ column filled in: with facts on front, also in 6-9 words ideally, and any feelings on back of same paper.
In about one month we will move on to doing turnarounds.

Writing Step Four.

Big Book page 64:
Therefore we started upon a personal inventory.

‘Personal’ means how you see it. And how you see it is distorted. And without the help and guidance of your higher power you will have a distorted fourth and fifth step. Your resentment will become a ‘poor me’ cuddly teddy bear that you go to when you are Hungry Angry Lonely Tired as a default ‘get out’ clause.

Realize it is difficult especially for those who have been physically, sexually abused, physically beaten up. However, when you will not look at your part and let it go, you imprison yourself and they hold the keys. Do you want to let yourself out of the jail of resentment to be free to live a life of peace and joy and serenity and accepting that people do really bad things? And you are going to see that you did really bad things? And if we want them to forgive us then we have to forgive those who have done bad things to us.

They did the best they could as indeed did we when we were in our addictions.

So, if I want to get on and have my higher power give me peace joy and serenity even knowing what I have done, I have to accept the people who have done bad things to me. Pray about it. Meditate on it.

It is a personal inventory. We are not going to look at other people except for the cause. Going to write their name down and then write the cause. That’s when you are going to stop looking at other people. Then, looking at the bare facts. A little bit this week and none next week. Step 2 on Christmas Day and then the following week we will do ‘affects’. That’s a very hard one, affects. It has a lot of pieces to it and it’s very important that you can see how one resentment can affect every area of your life. Holding onto one resentment affects all your relationships, the way you live your life, spiritually, emotionally, physically,

This was step four. You are going to look at your personal life, intimacy. You are going to look at all the intimacy that you have held onto that have made up your way of looking at the world. You can change how you look at the world.

Stephanie adds: ‘A lot of us grew up in alcoholic homes and we looked at the world through fear-coloured glasses and we were always defending and protecting ourselves and looking for any little thing – then the red flag would go up. And there didn’t need to be a red flag. And we were hyper-sensitive and projected onto others our deep insecurity and fears of not being loved and loveable. And that was a lie. It was a lie I told myself. I was very loveable and I was very loved. It was just that the love of my parents and relatives had didn’t fit my mold.

I had an idealized type of family life, I didn’t want life. I wanted fantasy. And when I didn’t get the fantasy to come true I copped a resentment. Were my parents perfect? No. Was I perfect as a parent? No. Is there such a thing as a perfect person? No. This process really taught me I lived in fantasy land looking for perfect people. I failed so miserably to be perfect yet expected others to be perfect.’

A business (put person) which takes no regular inventory usually goes broke. Addiction is about as broke as you will get. Taking a commercial (personal) inventory is a fact-finding and face-facing process. Write it on the top of each page. Stephanie adds: A lot of you come from 12-step halls and if you are anything like me you worship feelings. I feel sad. That gave me license to climb into bed and binge my brains out because I felt sad. My feelings lie. Al-Anon told me feelings are not facts. I am not discounting feelings. They cannot be trusted to tell us what is going on. I can feel insulted and nobody is insulting me. That was my problem my whole life. Nobody was insulting me but I felt insulted. Today when I feel insulted I will ask God to help and if still there will check it out.

What do I mean by that? My feelings are saying this is some sort of a put down. Today I can check it out. I don’t live in fear. Being 100 percent honest with my feelings, being kind and giving others the benefit of the doubt. Everybody gets the benefit of the doubt. And when I think or feel that somebody is treading on my toes, I check it out. That’s what you do when you give somebody the benefit of the doubt. I have got to check it out otherwise get into a lot of trouble as cannot trust my feelings.

It is an effort to discover the truth about stock in trade.

This is your character. You are learning about your character assets and defects that you’ve brought into the situation. You are not totally one or the other. We can get triggered and our feelings can bring us right into a character defect or our feelings can bring us into checking what is going on. Ask God: God, help me to ask what is going on without treading on somebody’s toes.

That is what this fact-facing and fact-finding process is: to discover the truth about how I responded to what is going on. I always responded with fear that they don’t love me. I never checked it out. I never asked: ‘What do you mean by that? Could you explain more? What you are talking about and driving at? I would really like to understand what you are saying’. Al-Anon taught me how to do that. Also being 100 percent honesty about 100 percent of our life. This beautiful fourth step will teach you how to tease out the truth about how you reacted.

If you react to everything, you either react in your character asset or character defect. And you are going to find out after you write out a resentment and the cause then it is all about you. Your truth. I could not believe how insecure I was. And how before I did this process, I lived so much on a foundation of fear, doubt and insecurity. I had done many fourth and fifth steps and they never uncovered this. I always spent all the time looking at the other person, trying to analyze them. It is hard enough figuring out my own motives let alone somebody else’s. Today I will tactfully ask somebody else: I don’t really understand what you mean. I am going to sit and listen and if you will, talk more about your request/your statement. I’d love to know what’s going on so I can meet your statement with understanding. They will stay and listen and talk it out or not. Either way I have 100 percent honesty. I am not lying to myself or them. I am not people pleasing and I could possibly walk away with no resentment.

Talk it out. No negativity and no gossip. You can gossip about somebody right to their face by saying something negative or by projecting onto them something they never thought. So we have to be very careful about projection. That is what this process will show you: how you projected your selfishness, self-centeredness and fear onto other people.

One object is to disclose damaged or unsaleable goods (our character defects) to get rid of them promptly and without regret.

How to know you have them? Claim them. Go to God in Quiet Time. Give them all to God and then go to another human being and you tell them: this is the situation and this is my character defect or situation that came up. I gave it all to God, and I am giving it to you and let you and I talk about whether or not I need to make an amend. We tend to harm others when we project and may need to make amends. You need another human being who is doing this process. Other people in 12th step really don’t understand this process.

We have the pros and the cons: our character assets and defects. Great things happened in our life, great burdens, happiness, sorrow. How do we take whatever our HP has given us and put it into fact-finding and fact-facing mission?

If the owner (that is us) of the business is to be successful, he cannot fool himself about values.

We cannot fool ourselves. We were in character assets when we were living in doubt, fear and insecurity. That’s why we write our feelings on the back of the page and just do the facts on the front. How you do the cause is pivotal. It is the foundation. If you have a faulty foundation you cannot build a healthy house. If you have a faulty cause built on feelings then the whole process will be shaky and faulty. So the cause needs to be distinct without emotion and neutral so that when you work on it there isn’t an emotional pull. What do you do with all that emotion? You turn the paper over and write every single emotion in detail one last time. Know that this is it. It is not going to be your cuddly teddy bear anymore. You are not going to create a negative cave to go back to when Hungry Angry Lonely or Tired. When you are looking for an excuse to isolate to get out of something that is hard, to get out of life.

Soul work

Page 65. Initially do not use the work sheets. Write out all the categories so you know how to do it without the template. After the five initial resentments you can use the template from the website.

You read everything you now write, including the back, to your buddy or buddy group. They are your witness. Hopefully it is the last time you will ever have to read all that garbage.

It is not the truth, but how you filtered it through your own dishonestly, self-centeredness and fear. You are not a bad person. You will never get well unless you can start to inventory yourself in every situation with detachment with love. This process will give you the ability to look at your part without judging yourself or the other person or the situation. It is neutral. This is why you write down your feelings on the back so you can come back to the front side with some neutrality. Write the cause in just 6-9 words: if you are over that you are probably into feelings and explaining. Explain on the back. You will thank me when doing your fifth step.

Page 1 Brown. Then write your first cause: His attention to my wife
Page 2 Brown Told my wife of my mistress.
Page 3 Brown Brown may get my job at the office.

On separate piece of paper write down:

1. These are the areas one resentment affects: Self esteem. (Definition: How you respect yourself). When somebody says you’re nothing but a liar and a cheat – that hurts. And it affects how you respect yourself. Respect of self is the most important thing for recovery. If you don’t respect yourself you are not going to have boundaries re. food, alcohol, drugs, co-dependency and are an absolute prey for everybody and every addiction. One resentment affects your self-esteem. Some of us trashed ourselves with food, alcohol, and drugs. And broke our self-respect by having indiscriminate sex just to get somebody to give us attention so we could feel loveable. One resentment affects how you esteem yourself. Look at whether or not you have dignity.

2. Pride. (Definition: How you see yourself in the world).
I saw myself as a loser and I was convinced that everybody else thought I was a loser. That is pride. ‘Good pride’ is knowing I am not a loser. When I realized God loved me no matter what, I knew I wasn’t a loser. Then I started not sleeping around. Started going to food recovery and trying to follow a food plan. My self-respect came back. There’s a good self-esteem and a good pride. Resentment erodes self-esteem and pride.

3. Personal relations. (Definition: How you get along with others).
Not respecting myself and thinking of myself as a loser. In my personal relations I bent over backwards as I did not have a sense of us being equals. You were better than me and I was less than. Or sometimes I was better than you and you were less than me. That is personal relations: how I get along with people. How I thought about other people. How I related to them. Did I relate from one-up or one down? My personal relationships with men were abysmal.

4. Personal security. This is a big one. Do I feel secure with people in my world? Do I feel safe and even more important, safe within myself. Before this process I did not respect myself and thought of myself as a loser. My relationships were people pleasing. My personal security was always insecure, based on fear that others would not love or respect me. I felt insecure whether or not I was relating from a ones up or one down position.

5. Pocket book (Definition: How this resentment affects your ability to take care of yourself in the world).
It’s not just money. ‘Pocket book’ is not the best description but the only one we’ve got from the Big Book. How I buy my groceries, pay my bills. How I conduct my spending. Do I get into debt by buying clothes that I cannot afford so I will look good and people will like and love me and I will respect myself? If I go to a party and sit in the corner – that is part of personal security too. Do I make the most of every situation? Do I do a day’s pay for a day’s work? Or do I work eight hours but spend half the time on the phone or complaining about my boss?

6. Sex relations. (Definition: How you see yourself as a sexual being in all your relationships).
Do you see yourself: as I am desperate for a man I am going to be a real tramp. Or do you see yourself as a sexual anorexic: I don’t like me. Nobody is going to like me so I am not even going to try. So sit in the corner and not talk to anyone then leave feeling resentful. Did you throw yourself at somebody because you are resentful at your mother and she told you not to have sex before marriage? Any way or anyhow you used your sexual powers and resentment will really affect how you see yourself. May have had sex with men just to get some attention.

7. Ambition (Definition: Motive to get what we want from people and the world) e.g. Get a well-paid job so I look good to my wife and the world.

ONE resentment affects us physically, emotionally, and spiritually.

We need to claim any feelings our resentments bring up so that we can then dump them instead of letting them linger. The cleansing process occurs when we read the feelings we’ve written on to our buddy or buddy group, letting them be the witness to our personal, wounded feelings, rage, etc. before we then let them go forever.

Write as much as your Higher Power tells you to write -at home. But for the workshop, write only 5 people you have resentments towards (and the cause for each resentment towards the SAME person on a separate page, tagging each page in the upper L hand corner with the person’s name about whom you are writing and the consecutive page numbers for your enumeration of causes-of-resentment at that same one person (remember: only one to a page) if you have more than one cause.
i.e. Upper L hand corner of each separate page:
Mr. Brown p.1
Mr. Brown p.2
Mr. Brown p.3 ….etc.

This week include the ‘Affects my’ column, writing FACTS in that column in approximately no more than 6-9 words; otherwise we’re probably giving in to explaining our feelings. Write as much as we need to about our feelings concerning the facts we’ve listed in our ‘Affects my’ column on the back of the page. We should be touching on all 7 areas (mentioned above) that one resentment affects, for each cause listed.

Also, remember: part of the recovery process is just being compliant, like the Third Step prayer speaks about (‘…I offer myself to Thee – to build with me and to do with me as Thou wilt’). So Stephanie asks that we please just do Step Four in the manner in which she is asking- even if we have done it differently before.

God, I offer myself to you completely…

Recording for December 11, 2014

(Week 154) December 11, 2014

Stephanie has two groups both on the same number: 712 432 8816 pin no. 32450#

They have the same callback number 641 715-3900 — but different PIN numbers:

(1) Tuesday 8am EST Live – Dr. Bob and the Good Old Timers (callbk pin no. 298913#)

(2) Thursday 8am EST Live – 12 Step Study ( All Addictions) Big Book Workshop (callbk pin no. 95666#)

Open Study-Buddy Groups 712 432 0800 pin no. 587213#
Thursdays EST 9:30am Sundays EST 11a-12n

Please send donations to support the website to:

Stephanie Whiting
P O Box 531
North Pembroke MA 02358

Big Book p. 64 paragraph 1: ” Therefore, we started upon a personal inventory. This was Step Four. A business which takes no regular inventory usually goes broke. Taking a commercial inventory is a fact-finding and a fact-facing process. It is an effort to discover the truth about the stock-in-trade. One object is to disclose damaged or unsalable goods, to get rid of them promptly and without regret. If the owner of the business is to be successful, he cannot fool himself about values.”

[ see BB p. 65 for format of Step Four work ]

Stephanie is asking us for patience and tolerance with her and with each other in case we’ve been doing 4th Step work a different way in the past. Get Stephanie’s method down pat here, in workshop
(with up to 5 resentments), and then we can run with it at home, writing (about) as many more resentments as we feel like. And invite God into doing your inventory with you, being partners in your discovery process. The most important part is to start with the Step Three prayer.

Characteristics of somebody you would put on a resentment list:
(1) someone you are angry at
(2) someone you are jealous of
(3) dislike
(4) unforgiving towards
(5) feel ‘icky’ about
(6) would not like to come into a party you are at

You’ve got to name your resentments (here: at people only, for now) – not be nebulous – and claim them, before you can turn them around.

You’ve got to go to God and claim your resentments because it’s not about ego – it’s about getting well. And we can’t get well if we have unresolved resentments.

Remember that resentments are all about fear.

You can ask God: show me who I resent the most and then next most, etc., and number – in descending order – as many names of people as we have resentments towards. We’re going down the columns, not across, in order to get a feeling of how vast our resentments list can be.

You have to go to God and ask him to help you put the joy back into your soul. Resentment will take the joy out of life, out of your very soul.

BB says resentment is the #1 killer (see BB p. 64 para 3 first sentence). So you want to work through the resentment by looking at yourself.

In the Hyannis method, we do not clump together causes.

Use a different page for each cause about same person and number each ’cause paper’ for same person (i.e. Joe/pg. 1, Joe/pg. 2, Joe/pg. 3…) together with that person’s name – in the upper L hand corner of each page – in case papers fall out of your looseleaf and get separated. This is an orderly process and we want to keep things orderly. This method will help you quickly find where to reinsert these pages into your binder.

Repeat that same person’s name on each page under the ‘I am resentful at’ column, as well as in the upper L hand corner of each new page.

i.e. Joe p.1 This is a fact-finding and fact-facing proposition.

I am resentful at: Cause Affects my

Joe (1) left my house at age 12 & 1/2

Joe p. 2 This is a fact-finding and fact-facing proposition.

I am resentful at: Cause Affects my

Joe (2) didn’t engage in conversation

with me

Joe p. 3 This is a fact-finding and fact-facing proposition.

I am resentful at: Cause Affects my

Joe (3)

This helps us see how huge one resentment is.

And across the top of each page always write in: “This is a fact-finding and fact-facing proposition.”

If you feel you have more to write on any cause, turn the page over and write further.

The front-of-the-page column titled ‘CAUSE’ is just for FACTS, not feelings, boiled down to 6-8 words, NO MORE- because we don’t want to wallow in our feelings anymore, since that has destroyed our souls until now. Resentment destroys our soul because we keep reliving our feelings.

As the BB says(p. 64 para 3): “Resentment is the “number one” offender.”

One object(ive) of a moral ( moral means truthful, here) inventory is to disclose negative feelings
because these make us ‘damaged or unsalable goods’. And now we want to stop refilling and reliving the whole litany of all the harms and hurts done to us, so that we get rid of the ‘go to’ excuse for going back to our addiction(s) whenever things get hard, an action we use in order to feel sorry for ourselves and cling onto the ‘victim’ feeling (like spandex clings ) and not push through to be successful at our lives.

If we don’t want to get rid of these promptly, we should just tear up our (resentment list) papers.

If we’re not interested in letting these things go, rip up these papers because we’re just doing another paper-and-pencil exercise.

If we want to be successful (being successful here means: being healthy, out of our addictions/ showing up and having logical consequences/ showing up to be helpful and not in order to have our egos assuaged), we can’t fool ourselves. We have to be willing to discover the truth about our values and promptly and without regret give them to God.

The most important part of doing the Fourth Step is being BRUTALLY HONEST.

We were spiritually sick. We are doing a spiritual exercise now.

Resentment, fear, dishonesty make us spiritually ill.

We are going to overcome our spiritual disease and “straighten out mentally and physically” after we name and claim what we’ve been holding onto all these years which makes us spiritually ill.

(See BB p.64 paragraph 3, sentences 1-4: “Resentment is the number one offender. It destroys more alcoholics than anything else. From it stem all forms of spiritual disease…When the spiritual malady is overcome, we straighten out mentally and physically”.)

Our Soul Work this week:

(1)Take each person we resent (up to 5 names for the workshop) and write as many causes as applicable, keeping each cause on a separate piece of paper and at 6-9 words/just the FACTS – writing on the back of each ’cause paper’ as much feelings about that particular cause as we have. We’re not judging ourselves. That will stop the process because we can’t stand feeling bad about ourselves.

Writing feelings is optional; the feelings we write can be read to our buddies (not the group).

Any resentments we have towards others keeps us chained to them and wrecks our lives.

If you can’t realize what the factual cause of your resentful feelings is, turn your paper over and
write all your feelings and God will show you what the factual cause is.

If you have factual causes and no feelings, Hallelujah!

This Fourth Step process has taught Stephanie that everyone in her life has been given to her as
a gift – to learn about herself, her patterns.

We are humans, we have feelings; feelings are a gift and they have their place. They are to be shared with our buddy or religious mentor (Pastor/Priest/Rabbi) or psychologist or counselor. But feelings are not facts; they will lie to us!

We disperse our litany of feelings by having someone witness our feelings, piecemeal, as we go along doing our Fourth Step. And then, when we get to Step Five, we share our entire inventory all at once and give it away to God, letting go of it all at once. This is VERY LIFE-CHANGING!

(2) Write down any questions you may have for next week.

This is a life-changing, inch-by-inch, process and Stephanie is most honored to be our sponsor here, taking us through this AND most grateful for being able to share this most intimate, life-changing process with us.

Recording for December 4, 2014

(week 153) Dec 4 2014 12 Step Study Big Book All Addictions Workshop

Stephanie has two groups both on the same number: 712 432 8816 pin no. 32450#
They have the same callback number 641 715-3900 – but different pin numbers:
(1) Tuesday 8am EST Dr. Bob and the Good Old Timers pin no. 298913#
(2) Thursday 8am EST 12 Step Study (All Addictions) Big Book Workshop pin no. 95666#

Open Study Buddy Groups 712 432 0800 pin no. 587213#
Thursdays EST 9.30am Sundays EST 11-12am

Please send donations to support the website to:
Stephanie Whiting
P O Box 531
North Pembroke MA 02358

AA 12 x 12 Tradition 3 Page 141 First line: ‘What is credible that AA was to have a divorce rate….:’ until end ‘…any alcoholic is a member of our Society when he says so.’

At last experience taught us that to take away any alcoholic’s full chance was sometimes to pronounce his death sentence, and often to condemn him to endless misery. Who dared to be judge, jury, and executioner of his own sick brother?

Tradition Three:
“The only requirement for A.A. Membership is a desire to stop drinking.”

Next Thurs. Dec. 11, ’14 Beginning of Step Four writing
Dec. 25, ’14 Summary of Step Two
Jan. 1, ’15 Summary of Step Three

look up: piety

Q1a) Is your group a judge and jury?
b) Do you judge? Do you punish your sick brother/sister by not calling them?

“Why did A.A. finally drop all its membership regulations? Why did we leave it to each newcomer to decide himself whether he was an alcoholic and whether he should join us?”
Q2a) Does your group have membership regulations?
b) Ask yourself: Am I being put in a box by my groups?
c) Do I put other people in a box?

Q3a) Are you afraid of damaging your reputation?
b) Do you break your anonymity?

Q4. Considering all we have learnt about a) b) and c) on page 60 of the Big Book why is piety good?

Q5. Why is self-righteous piety damaging to ourselves and others?

Preparation for next week when we begin Step 4:

Write a list of the people whom you currently resent. Those you feel jealous of, angry at, who have hurt you emotionally, harmed you physically or spiritually. People you have written about before and yet you still have feelings. Something happened with this person and you now re-feel the feelings when you think of them and you have an icky feeling about them. (Resentment means you re-feel the feelings) Another way to describe it, is you are at a Christmas party and having a great time and this person walks in and you go “Uh. I don’t want this person here.”
The person can be alive or dead and if you only think you have a resentment you do, so include them too.

And whether God gives you 16, 20, 100, or three or one. It doesn’t matter. You go to God and you write them down.

In Quiet Time take that list to the God of your understanding and ask to be shown who right when you are in Quiet Time is No. 1 that you really,really have a problem with right now today? And then the 2nd, 3rd, the 4th and 5th.
After you have got clear with the help of your Higher Power which are the five most pressing, bring them for next week.

[Later we will do institutions and then principles. Institutions is a group of people: e.g. a group dental practice, a hospital, the police department. People is one of those dentists in that group, or one policeman].

You are going to do your work in columns just like on page 65 of the Big Book.
You need a three-ring metal note book and paper.
Take the first name on the list and write across the top of the page:

(1) I am resentful at: (write the name) The cause: Affects my:

Take the second resentment and on new sheet of paper (even if it is the same person as no. 1) and write:

(2) I am resentful at: (write the name) The cause: Affects my:
and so on until you have done all five.

No other writing.

[Take-away ‘Stephanie Tips’ from today’s Workshop:

– When you have a troubled person in your life, make sure you put them on your gratitude list for teaching you patience and tolerance. Inventory yourself to see whether you, too, are guilty of what bothers you in the other person.
– do amends WITH God (‘I offer myself to you God, to be with you in partnership. So, please, help me to inventory myself…’)
– Unfortunately, it’s the human condition that people are afraid to continue hanging around someone who has lost his sobriety. But AA is built on helping our sick brother, not hurting him.
So don’t dump someone who has a slip- that’s like enacting a divorce; very painful. Rather,
encourage them/ teach them about Quiet Time and how to set Healthy Boundaries.
-Best for men to help men and women to help women since men and women think differently . (If there is no one else to help, it can temporarily work.)
– Be open to listen to the wisdom of the experience of others.
– Not everyone’s path is right for everyone else. But the Twelve Steps can be.
– Requirements kill real alcoholics.
– Break anonymity where appropriate – in order to offer your help.
– Atheists can stay sober; they have a HP – for them, it’s the group!
– Let yourself have a QT and let your God evolve to what He is for you.]

Recording for November 27, 2014

(week 152) 27 Nov 2014 12 Step Study Big Book Workshop

Stephanie has two groups both on the same number: 712 432 8816 pin no. 32450#

They also have the same callback number 641 715-3900 – but different pin numbers:

(1) Tuesday 8am EST Dr. Bob and the Good Old Timers pin no. 298913#

(2) Thursday 8am EST 12 Step Study (All Addictions) Big Book Workshop pin no. 95666#

Open Study Buddy Groups 712 432 0800 pin no. 587213#

Thursdays EST 9.30am Sundays EST 11-12am

Please send donations to support the website to:

Stephanie Whiting
P O Box 531
North Pembroke MA 02358

[Christmas Day: summary of Step 2. New Year’s Day: summary of Step 3]

Next Thursday (Dec 4) End of Tradition 3 and preparation for starting Step 4.

Step 1:

“We admitted we were powerless over alcohol – and our lives had become unmanageable.”

SOUL WORK

Q1 When your mind and body are in a hopeless and powerless state how are you going to:

a) make rational healthy decisions for you and your family?

b) work and be a decent worker?

c) help another person in your step one fellowship?

d) How can the life of an addict not be unmanageable when the mind cannot think straight and the addicted body is calling all the shots?

e) How are you going to live a manageable life?

Q2. There is power in admitting we are powerless. Meditate and write on this.

Recording for Thursday, November 20, 2014

(week 151) 20 November 2014 12 step Big Book all addictions workshop

12 x 12 Step 3 Page 40 first paragraph: ‘Then it is explained…’ until the end of the step:
‘Thy will, not mine, be done.’

Please send donations to support the website to:
Stephanie Whiting
P O Box 531
North Pembroke MA 02358

Stephanie has two groups both on the same number: 712 432 8816 pin no. 32450#
They also have the same callback number 641 715-3900 – but different pin numbers:
(1) Tuesday 8am EST Dr. Bob and the Good Old Timers pin no. 298913#
(2) Thursday 8am EST 12 Step Study (All Addictions) Big Book Workshop pin no. 95666#

Open Study Buddy Groups 712 432 0800 pin no. 587213#
Thursdays EST 9.30am Sundays EST 11-12am

Step 3.
A really good working definition of Step three is making a decision to align our will with God’s will.
If without Quiet Time you don’t know God are you going you align yourself with God? Of course not. Instead you will go back to aligning yourself with yourself.

******Stephanie will do a workshop next week, Thanksgiving. It will be her Thanksgiving gift to us-
a 1 hour REVIEW from 8a-9a EST of Steps 1, 2, and 3.

Don’t be concerned if you can’t make it next week; Stephanie understands completely. You can listen to the callback.

The following week, we’ll wrap up Tradition 3, God Willing. Then there will be some preliminary information Stephanie will give us right before starting Step Four, in approximately 3 weeks.

So keep collecting your writing supplies for Step Four- in a (suggestion:) designated nice, quiet writing area with a strong lamp. And make sure you know the 3rd Step prayer, or your version of the 3rd Step prayer ( you can rewrite it any way you want), because it’s very, very important to invite your HP to come in to your recovery. You need power! (We didn’t have power before we came to live the sober life; we admitted we were powerless in Step One.)

And, with Stephanie as sponsor, nobody does any Step 4 writing without first saying their Third Step prayer. And, if one has to interrupt their writing, one should say the 3rd Step prayer again before resuming- since the sacred bond established between ourselves and our HP has been disrupted.

12stepstudyworkshop.com has all the handouts and accumulated knowledge of Stephanie’s studies of the Big Book.
This week: Find the handout on the 12 steps and their principles.
[Each principle has a step. thus Step one surrender, Step two hope, etc.]

Soul work

Look up: sustained

Q1. Human will is of huge value in sobriety. Write on this.

Aligning yourself to God is an act of human will. So ask God: ‘Can you show me what is the next right action’ – and God will. .
To not be a lone wolf, an individual needs:
a. a Higher Power
b. an action plan given by God and then accountability around the action plan.
c. a support group.

Q2. Without accountability, an action plan is self-abuse. Write on this.

Q3. If you are a lone wolf you’re still active even if you are sober in your program.
Write about this.

‘All by himself and in the light of his own circumstances, he needs to develop the quality of willingness. When he acquires willingness, he is the only one who can make the decision to exert himself.’
Q4. What do you understand by this?

Q5. It is when we try to make our will conform with God’s that we begin to use it rightly. (The key to sobriety). Write on this.

Q6. Feelings are not facts and no longer run Stephanie’s life. How about you?

Courage to change the things I can.
Q7. What does Courage mean to you?

Q8) What does wisdom mean to you? [To Stephanie it means she’s brought the situation in question to God and she has the solution and Action Plan. Then, of course, she has to align her will with God’s will – even if she doesn’t always feel like doing the answer she gets from God. And then, of course, she has to DO the (next) wise thing (action).]

Q9. Step 4
a) If you haven’t yet memorized the Third Step prayer or your version of it, that is your major soul work for the next two weeks.
b) In preparation for writing Step 4, find a good lamp and a comfortable chair. There needs to be a de-cluttered space – this writing is sacred work.

Ends

Recording for November 13, 2014

(week 150) 13 Nov 2014 12step study big book workshop

12stepstudyworkshop.com has all the handouts and accumulated knowledge of Stephanie’s studies of the Big Book.

Please send donations to support the website to:
Stephanie Whiting
P O Box 531
North Pembroke MA 02358

Stephanie has two groups both on the same number: 712 432 8816 pin no. 32450#
They also have the same callback number 641 715-3900 – but different pin numbers:
(1) Tuesday 8am EST Dr. Bob and the Good Old Timers pin no. 298913#
(2) Thursday 8am EST 12 Step Study (All Addictions) Big Book Workshop pin no. 95666#

Open Study Buddy Groups 712 432 0800 pin no. 587213#
Thursdays EST 9.30am Sundays EST 11-12am

IMPORTANT:
As of now Stephanie recommends you keep your private buddyships purely for your Fourth Step work.
A buddy is to witness what a person has learnt through doing these steps. They make no comment only: ‘Thank you for sharing,’ or: ‘I witness what you have read’.
No cross talk which is telling others what to do.

Today’s reading:
AA 12&12 Tradition Three top p. 139 – ’till end of top paragraph p. 141:
“The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking. ….Could any then imagine a society which would include every conceivable kind of character, and cut across every barrier of race, creed, politics, and language with ease?”

Soul work

look up: harrowing.

Q1 (a) ‘In my buddy group I will only say: I will witness your work. Thank you’. Write on that.
(b) ‘If you are into the problem, you can’t be into the solution’. Write on that.

Q2. Do you have anxiety and fear when people that don’t look and sound like you come into your step one fellowship? Do you go over and introduce yourself?

a) What do you do if they bring in new ideas?

b) Do you go to your Higher Power? To your mentor?

c) Do you dig into the traditions?

d) Do you call Central Service?

e) Do you call a business meeting and discuss it to let the group conscience decide whether the new ideas are appropriate for your group?

[You now have an action plan so will never again have to live in anxiety and fear when new people come into the group].

Q3. If you are have an action plan you are no longer a victim. Write on this.
[Being a victim brings anxiety and fear which an action plan brings you out of – a summary of the whole fourth step process].

‘Yes, we were intolerant?’
Q4 Are you intolerant? If so, what do you do?

Q5. ‘After all, isn’t fear the true basis of intolerance?’
Write on this.
[Intolerance comes from being fearful and when fearful you are a victim of yourself.
When you have an action plan you no longer victimize yourself] .

Q6. FEAR: Face Everything And Recover (with God).
Write on this.
[Face everything means you may still stay in the problem. Recovery is having an action plan].

Q7. ‘Could we then foresee that troublesome people were to become our principle teachers of patience and tolerance?’ Write on this.

Recording For November 6, 2014

(week 149) 6 November 2014 12-step study Big Book Step Workshop

12stepstudyworkshop.com has all the handouts and accumulated knowledge of Stephanie’s studies of the Big Book.

Please send donations to support the website to:
Stephanie Whiting
P O Box 531
North Pembroke MA 02358

Stephanie has two groups both on the same number: 712 432 8816 pin no. 32450#
They also have the same callback number 641 715-3900 – but different pin numbers:
(1) Tuesday 8am EST Dr. Bob and the Good Old Timers pin no. 298913#
(2) Thursday 8am EST 12 Step Study (All Addictions) Big Book Workshop pin no. 95666#

NOTE: THE TRUST & RELY NOON FRIDAY MEETING IS NO LONGER RUNNING.

Buddy Group: 712 432 0800 Buddy Group pin no. 587213#
Support the Buddy Group. When you go with the attitude what can I contribute without expect anything in return then you are really recovered. In recovery we give what we have, we give it gratefully and to anybody who needs it. The gift is that when you give abundantly you get so much joy. Its a wonderful way of life. If you want a buddy or to be a buddy: write to sue7263@aol.com

SOUL WORK

Today’s reading:
AA 12 & 12 para 1: “Then it is explained that other Steps of the A.A. program can be practiced with success only when Step Three is given a determined and persistent trial. … ’til end of p. 41:
“In all times of emotional disturbance or indecision, we can pause, ask for quiet, and in the stillness simply say: “God grant me the serenity … Thy will, not mine, be done.”

Q(1) Do you really want to get well? Go into your core; go into meditation on this.
Some people don’t really want to get well. They like the excuse: ‘this is my behavior because I’m an addict!’. But recovered doesn’t mean stopping being an addict. It means (1) my mind and (2) my actions are not crazy; they are disciplined and checked out with my HP and evenly-yoked mentors.

Q(2) Are you willing to know what you have to do so you can compromise (be negotiable) with other people but still have and get done what you have to?

Going to God and not to our egos:
It takes an act of self-will to align our egos with God’s Will.
Ego can be very, very defeating with our relationships. But, with our self-will, we can tone our ego down and use persistence and determination to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God.

Q3 Do you really want to be successful in step four and that you have thoroughly cleaned house? Go to the core of this in meditation.
[Some addicts say they want to get well but down deep they don’t. They go around with the attitude of: I am an addict so you had better just excuse my behaviour. When you do the Big Book step study process you lose your excuse of not knowing. While you are still an addict, when recovered the mind and actions are not crazy. They are disciplined. They are checked out with a higher power and evenly yoked mentors].

Q4. Are you really willing to not have your own way?

Q5. Are you willing to go to God rather than using self-will and your ego to run things?
b) Are you willing to hand over all areas of your life to God: relationships, work, home, health, finances etc.?
c) If not, what areas do you still want to hold onto? What are your fears about handing them over?

Q6. Explore how you can use your self-will for positive or negative.

Q7. Are you convinced that you need the third step in every area of your life: recovery, work, parenting, sponsoring, romantic/platonic relationships, etc?

Q8. What in this week did you take charge of instead of working the third step?
If you went to to God for everything, talk about the success – it is way more important.
[You get recovered by accentuating what you do right. Stephanie got clean with her food by focusing on what she had achieved and replacing negative with positive talk].

Q9. Do you trust the God of your understanding to take care of you as you prepare to embark on step four and lay yourself bare, looking at your own selfishness and self-centredness? Are you willing?

Q10. Get yourself evenly yoked with like-minded people who will guide you with no judgement.
If you need practical help with structure for your Quiet Time go to the recordings of the Trust and Rely workshop: 12stepstudyworkshop.com.

Write down: FEAR: Face Everything (with God ) and Recover..

Q11. How many times a day are you willing to do the third step and turn something over and not have your own way?

When he acquires willingness, he is the only one who can make the decision to exert himself.
Q12. Are you willing to let God take over your thoughts and your actions?

Underline: ‘trying to do this is an act of will’

Above the word: ‘exertion’ write ‘self-will.’

Q13. Write down: We trust to God’s will.
Spend a couple of days of Quiet Time reflecting on this.

‘Trust’ is the biggest word in recovery
Q14a). Do you trust the recovery process?
b) Do you trust your God?
c) Do you trust your evenly yoked mentor? Stephanie?
d) Do you trust the group and your buddy/buddy group to God’s will?

Q15. The Serenity Prayer. Write on this as much as you want including taking it word by word. Also at: 12stepstudyworkshop.com there is an excellent Serenity Prayer handout.

Q16. Think about what it means to turn your thoughts and actions over to a Higher Power. [For Stephanie it means the greatest life ever which she would not give up for anything.]

Q Stephanie urges us to:
Q17. ‘Call one another. Your sisters doing this process are more important than I am.’

Ends

Recording for October 30, 2014

(week 148) Oct 30 2014 12-step study Big Book workshop

12stepstudyworkshop.com has all the handouts and accumulated knowledge of Stephanie’s studies of the Big Book.

Please send donations to support the website to:
Stephanie Whiting
P O Box 531
North Pembroke MA 02358

Stephanie has two groups both on the same number: 712 432 8816 pin no. 32450#
They also have the same callback number 641 715-3900 – but different pin numbers:
(1) Tuesday 8am EST Dr. Bob and the Good Old Timers pin no. 298913#
(2) Thursday 8am EST 12 Step Study (All Addictions) Big Book Workshop pin no. 95666#
*The Friday 12n EST Trust & Rely Workshop is cancelled for now due to lack of participation and leaders’ lives becoming full.

*No abstinence or sobriety requirements necessary here. No requirements- just suit up & show up!

* Shares are only recorded on the callback( which gets taken down after 7 days and is not archived), not on the website. If you wish not to be recorded, do not state your name.

*At the writing of the 4th Step, Stephanie will give us a total of 15 resentments to write about:
-5 of people, places, or institutions
-5 fears
-5 resentments on sex relations
If we want to write more, of course we may.

AA 12 &12 top of p. 39: ‘So how exactly can the willing person…’ until top of p. 40
‘…as a way of life can bring the much-desired result.’

If you have not yet got a buddy, e-mail: sue7263@aol.com.

Print out the handout on the directions for resentment that Sue sent out this week. Buy a two-three inch deep 3-ring punch binder and put it in there.

Soul work

Look up : bitterness, broods, victimized.

Q1. Are you willing to turn your will and your life over to a Higher Power?

Q2. Are you convinced that you have more problems than your addictions?

Q3. Have you come to the realization that there are some problems in life you really can overcome by personal determination and courage?

Q4a).What situation(s) in your life is not budging even though you have put into it all the determination, self-will and courage?

b) Or who is not budging: son, father, wife, partner, boss, co-worker, etc.?

c) When you get to the end of yourself, what are you going to do?

Above the word budge, write ‘change’.

Q5. Ask yourself, am I desperately unhappy about anything? Write it down.

Q6. Go to an Al-Anon meeting.
Listen to the Al-Anon philosophy of detachment, live and let live. They have sobriety, are detached and living a) b) and c) of the Big Book.
Then listen to the people who are trying to cajole, push, pull etc. do they have joy in their lives? [This is rich material for us to really do even before we get to the fourth step].

Our friend is still victimized by remorse and guilt when he thinks of yesterday.
Q7.Write out the two types of being victimized.

Q8. Two questions to ask in Quiet Time:
a) If you went to a party, who would you not want to walk through the door?
b) How do you feel when somebody’s name comes up?

Q9a) Does your financial insecurity worry you?

b) Are you having panic attacks over anything?

Q10. Do you have anyone that you might have icky feelings about? If so tell your buddy. (It will make your 4th step list so much easier to write).

Fourth line of last paragraph on page 39: ‘Of course the sponsor points out…’
Underline sponsor [It is the first time the word ‘sponsor’ is used].

Ends

Recording for October 23, 2014

(week 147) 23 October 2014 12 Step Study Big Book workshop

12 x 12 Step 3
Today’s reading:
AA 12&12 p. 36 last line- thru top of p. 39 end of 1st line:
“But the moment our mental or emotional independence is in question, how differently we behave. …..Whether in Alaska or on the Salerno beachhead, their dependence upon a Higher Power worked. And far from being a weakness, this dependence was their chief source of strength.”

Soul work

Look up: self-sufficiency.

Q1. How is it working for you?

Q2. When checking out new people to trust, take it slowly. Share a little and check to see what comes back. Then share a little more and again see if you like what comes back. Practice it this week and then write on how it went. How did it made you feel, taking a bit of a risk, trusting somebody?

This brave philosophy, wherein each man plays God, sounds good in the speaking but it still has to meet the acid test: how well does it actually work?

Q3. What do you want to do with your will power? Do you want to align it with the will of your Higher Power?

Q4. Good questions to bring to God:

a) Why do I need you God?
b) How well does my playing God actually work?

Q6a) Do you know any normal people?

b) Do you know people living on self-sufficiency?

Everywhere he sees people filled with anger and fear society breaking up into warring fragments. Each fragment says to the others, ‘“We are right and you are wrong.”

Q7a) Are you filled with anger and fear?

b) Are you part of society that is warring with other parts of society or are you disagreeing with certain things in our society, being able to accept them while not accepting the way someone thinks?

c) Who is showing that in your life?

d) You (put your name here) are right, they are wrong. How are you going to handle it?

Q8. Write on the slogan: Let go and let God or be dragged.

We realize that the word “dependence” is as distasteful to many psychiatrists and psychologists as it is to alcoholics. Like our professional friends we too are aware that there are wrong forms of dependence. We have experienced many of them.

Q9. Write about faulty dependence.
a. Whom do you have a faulty dependence upon?

b. If you don’t have a faulty dependence, write about how you were able to get out of that faulty dependence and into a healthy dependence upon your higher power and into trusting relationships.

Dependence on an AA group or a sponsor means you are on b) This is OK for awhile. Then need to go down to a higher power to c).
Q10. Are you in a) b) or c)?

“When World War II broke out, this spiritual principle had its first major test. …. Would they be able to …stand up under fire…?”
Q(11 ‘Under fire’ – are you under fire, under stress right now? How did you handle it?
Did you hunker down and go to God? Or did you go to faulty dependence? Or your addiction?

Recording for October 16, 2014

(week 14 6) 16 October 2014 12-step Big Book workshop

www.AA.org This has the Big Book and AA Reflections read at the Friday noontime

Trust & Rely meeting.

12stepstudyworkshop.com has all the handouts and accumulated knowledge of Stephanie’s studies of the Big Book.

Please send donations to support the website to:

Stephanie Whiting
P O Box 531
North Pembroke MA 02358

Stephanie has three groups running on the same no: 712 432 8816 pin no. 32450#

and with the same callback number: 641 715-3900

(1)Tuesday 8am EST Dr. Bob and the Good Old Timers pin 298913#
(2) Thursday 8am EST Big Book 12 Step Study Workshop pin 95666# (All Addictions)
(3) Friday 12noon EST Trust and Rely Workshop pin 91904#

12 x 12 Step 3 page 37 paragraph beginning: ‘But the moment our mental or emotional…’

until end of next paragraph ‘…it is a bone-crushing juggernaut whose final achievement is ruin.’

Soul work

Look up: self-sufficiency.

Q1. Search out one or two people whom you really trust and respect. Maybe somebody that you have listened to and are on the same page spiritually. Perhaps a pastor, rabbi or somebody associated with your congregation, priest, minister, counselor. So that if you really had to make a big life decision and you feel you have heard from God that you can run it by these one or two and feel comfortable.

Q2. The other assignment in readiness for writing step four is to go the website 12stepstudyworkshop.com

Go to ‘Handouts’, find the fourth step instructions and worksheets. Make four or five copies of the instructions and 50 copies of the format and put them in your three-ring binder. Also get some filler paper.

Q3.How is it working for you, being your own authority figure?

Everywhere he sees people filled with anger and fear, society breaking up into warring fragments. Each fragment says to the others,”We are right and you are wrong.”

Q4. Are you filled with anger and fear? Are you, in your mind, breaking up into warring fragments?

Ends