October 16th, 2010

When a person accepts something, they have undergone a psychological process of finding peace with a situation. In addiction or alcohol recovery terms those suffering from an addiction first find acceptance, and regain some power, through accepting and admitting that they have a problem. They will also find acceptance of ongoing importance as a 12 step recovery principle in their everyday lives, especially in connection with aspects of their lives that they have no control over.

12-Step programmes regard acceptance as a means of breaking through denial or to finding serenity in one’s life. Recovering alcoholics in AA and other 12 step recovery programmes refer to page 449 of the Alcoholics Anonymous Big Book (basic text) when speaking about acceptance.

This could possibly be one of the most quoted passages in addiction recovery books.

“And acceptance is the answer to all my problems today. When I am disturbed, it is because I find some person, place, thing or situation – some fact of my life – unacceptable to me, and I can find no serenity until I accept that person, place, thing or situation as being exactly the way it is supposed to be at this moment.

Nothing, absolutely nothing happens in God’s world by mistake. Until I could accept my alcoholism, I could not stay sober; unless I accept life completely on life’s terms, I cannot be happy. I need to concentrate not so much on what needs to be changed in the world as on what needs to be changed in me and in my attitudes.

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