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The Therapeutic Value of the 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous - Allen Berger, Ph.D

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The Therapeutic Value of the 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous - Allen Berger, Ph.D

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Agenda The Therapeutic Value of the 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous: define recovery, understand the soundness of the psychological principles that are operative in the 12 Steps, propose a True - Self model of personal development to understand the therapeutic effects of the 12 Steps, understand the therapeutic value and effect of the 12 Steps, understand how the Steps help one develop a new understanding of themselves and a more positive self - concept.

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  1. The Therapeutic Value of the 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous Allen Berger, Ph.D. Author and Psychologist The Gift of Recovery - 2013
  2. Agenda • Define recovery. • Understand the soundness of the psychological principles that are operative in the 12 Steps. • Propose a True-Self model of personal development to understand the therapeutic effects of the 12 Steps. • Understand the therapeutic value and effect of the 12 Steps. • Understand how the Steps help one develop a new understanding of themselves and a more positive self-concept.
  3. Definition of Recovery The first definition listed in the American Heritage Dictionary is “the getting back of something lost.”
  4. What are we “getting back” in recovery?
  5. Survey of the Literature • Authenticity. • Awareness. • The lost, true-self. • The ability to self-actualize. • The ability to flow with one’s experience. • Growing up: re-covering the developmental milestones missed. • The ability to learn which means discover new possibilities and a new understanding of self.
  6. William White’s (2007) Definition of Recovery Recovery is the experience (a process and a sustained status) through which individuals, families and communities impacted by severe alcohol and other drug (AOD) problems utilize internal and external resources to voluntarily resolve these problems, heal the wounds inflicted by the AOD-related problems, actively manage their continued vulnerability to such problems, and develop a healthy, productive, and meaningful life.
  7. An Addict’s Solution of Addiction
  8. We admitted we were powerless over alcohol – that our lives had become unmanageable. Step One
  9. Therapeutic Effects – Step 1 • Shatters the illusion of control over alcohol and other drugs. • Weakens the obstructive forces of the false-self so that the constructive forces of the real self have a chance to grow. • Induces an existential crisis.
  10. Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity. Step Two
  11. Therapeutic Effects – Step 2 • Resolves the existential crisis. • Instills hope. o Hope is generated by: • Providing a context or healing setting. • Having a rational or conceptual framework that provides an explanation for the client’s complaint and a method for resolving it. • Having an emotionally charged, confiding relationship with a helping person. • A procedure that requires involvement of both the healer and the client to being about a resolution or cure. • Mobilizes one’s ability to act on their behalf.
  12. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God (Higher Power), as we understood him. Step Three
  13. Therapeutic Effects – Step 3 • Making a commitment to discover a new way of life. • Making a commitment to uncover, discover and honor the True-self. • Making a commitment to surrender the obstructive forces of the false-self to realize the nature of the True-self.
  14. We made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves. Step Four
  15. Therapeutic Effects – Step 4 • Increases self-awareness. • Increases insight. • Encourages authenticity and honesty. • Develops a new understanding of self.
  16. We admitted to God (Higher Power), to ourselves, and to another human being he exact nature of our wrongs. Step Five
  17. Therapeutic Effects – Step 5 • Teaches the value of authenticity and being honest. • Teaches the value of having an enlightened witness. • Helps us learn the value of letting go. • Reveals that we are a human, being.
  18. Were entirely ready to have God (Higher Power) remove all these defects of character. Step Six
  19. Therapeutic Effects – Step 6 • Helps us aim at becoming our best possible self. • Encourages us to develop the best possible attitude towards ourselves and life. • Teaches us that our defects of character are functional.

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