“The Three A’s” can be an extremely powerful tool in coming to terms with our addiction.

The first part of this tool is Awareness. We shatter our denial by becoming aware of our feelings and the nature of our disease. We do this by listening at meetings and identifying with other members’ feelings and experiences. As our contact with others who have similar issues increases and our willingness to participate in our recovery increases, we find that our awareness also increases. The temptation to take action at this point is strong. Yet, it is wise for us to wait until we truly know what it is we are trying to change!

Acceptance comes when we are willing to admit our feelings and experiences to ourselves and others. After this admission, we see that we are accepted by other members just as we are. From this and by simply allowing ourselves to stay with our feelings, we learn how to accept our feelings and experiences without judgment. Finally, we learn how to Accept ourselves.

Once we know and accept who we are, our Actions flow naturally. It becomes easier to see how our old behavior hurts us and we learn new ways of taking care of ourselves.