Recovery Connections

John Schwary is CEO of Transitional Living Communities, a 850-bed recovery program he founded in Mesa, Arizona January 9, 1992 when he had a year sober. He's in his 27th year of recovery.

In these posts, he views life mostly through the lenses of recovery. While the blog is factual, he sometimes disguises events and people to protect anonymity.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Most Important Step?

I overheard a conversation the other day about which of the steps was the most important.  And those involved couldn't agree.

But in my mind the most important of the 12 steps is the first one. In fact, it's the first half of the first step that we must be clear about.

Because once we admit we're powerless over our substance of choice then we have something to work with. As our heads clear and the drugs or alcohol leave our systems we can progress.

Yet purists will likely say the steps all have the same weight. That no one of them is more important than the other. I disagree.

While I believe all the steps are important, those who can't get that first half of the first step right are stuck. They can't succeed at the rest.

Conversely, I've known those who haven't drank or drugged for years who have done little work on themselves. But because they quit using their lives got 100% better.

What they're missing though, in my opinion, is the richer recovery they would enjoy if they completed all the steps.  That's when they get the good stuff.