Home Tools & Concepts The “Write Way” to Work the Steps

The “Write Way” to Work the Steps

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When I first came into OA and sought out a sponsor to guide me along my path to recovery, she asked me to complete a reading and writing assignment every day. At this, I balked! I’m not that good of a writer and didn’t think I’d be capable of doing it. She was kind and gentle with me, but insisted that she was still sure I could accomplish this daily task. I didn’t have to write a book, she assured me. Even a single sentence would be fine, and it didn’t have to be a very thought-provoking sentence at that. “Just keep it simple,” she said, “and write something from your heart.”

Reluctantly, I gave it a try. As I started reading and writing every day, things gradually got easier. At first, I wrote only a sentence or two, but she always thanked me for what I’d written and encouraged me with positive feedback. As I continued these assignments for every one of the Twelve Steps, I found I was writing one or even two pages of reflections on my reading. She and I were both amazed at my growth! I remained in abstinence and grew stronger physically, emotionally, and spiritually.

When I’d completed all Twelve Steps in this manner, I told my sponsor she’d created a writing monster. She laughed so heartily that it made me laugh as well. I’d learned how exciting and beneficial the Tool of writing could be. I now use it every day in working my program and—by the grace of God, the wonderful Twelve Steps, and my OA fellowship—I’ve maintained five-and-a-half years of continuous abstinence, have been released from over 120 pounds (55 kg) of weight, and have grown emotionally and spiritually as well. I’m much more balanced now and can face life each day without burying myself in food.

I’ve also grown much closer to my Higher Power. I thank my first sponsor as well as my HP for encouraging me to use the marvelous and exciting Tool of writing. As I continue my journey still using this Tool, it helps me in so many ways. Whenever a problem or situation arises, writing about it exposes it to the light of day, gets it out of my head, and helps me deal with it far more effectively than if I’d kept it locked up inside.

I strongly encourage you to try writing. You might find you love it as much as I do and that it helps you grow stronger in your recovery as well.

— Lance

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