Understanding the 6th Step of AA and What it Can Do For You
Going to Alcoholics Anonymous is a great way to get on track to sobriety. This organization has been helping fellow alcoholics get over their addiction for many years.
However, the initial 12-step program might seem a bit daunting to you. Especially steps that require you to reflect inward, such as step 6.
In particular, step 6 can be a challenge for first time visitors. They might not feel the need to complete this step.
Regardless, it’s a vital part of the system that will get you back on your feet. Once you learn more about step 6, you’ll understand why it’s so important.
What Is the 6th Step?
As defined by the official 12-step AA program, step 6 requires that participants “were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.”
It relies a bit on information curated in step 5. In that step, you are asked to admit to God, yourself, and another person “the exact nature of our wrongs.”
So in order to complete step 6, you have to take all of the wrongs you listed in step 5 and consider them in your mind. Then you have to mentally commit to changing the behavior that caused these mistakes.
Sure, it will be easy to say you’ll never make a mistake again. However, actually vowing to change the behavior that led to the mistakes, such as drinking too much, can be much harder to achieve.
Luckily, by asking God, you’ll have extra strength and courage along the way.
Defining Defects of Character
Before you can ask God to heal you, however, you need to first understand what exactly constitutes a “defect of character.”
Basically, your character defects refer to your old style of living. It’s not about nitpicking specific mistakes or encounters; instead, it’s about changing the personality traits and habits that created and led to these mistakes.
Overall, by defining these defects, you are preparing to officially shed your old, addict life and move on to something brighter and better.
Still not clear on the true definition of step 6? Give our hotline a call at 800-839-1686Who Answers? to talk with a representative who can discuss the finer points of character defects, relying on God, and more.
With step 6, comes a huge feeling of healing. By becoming aware of your old patterns, you can finally take responsibility for them. By trusting in and relying on God, you can shift these problems over to Him.
He will bear the burden for you, so that you can officially let go and move on.
At the end of step 6, you’ll finally be able to drop your outdated defenses and feel a delayed gratification that might have been years in the making.
Even if you don’t believe in a particular god, AA still asks that you confide in a non-specific Higher Power to guide you on the path of sobriety.
By handing over your old habits to this Power, you will instantly feel a huge burden being lifted off of your shoulders.
You’ll also feel much closer to this entity and have a heightened sense of connection with the mystical world around you.
By opening yourself up to new spiritual awareness, you can begin to forgive yourself and grieve for the moments you’ve lost in the past. You can also begin to heal your old relationship patterns and develop a new and improved healthy sense of self.
All of the steps of AA are equally important, but it’s often step 6 that helps people actually change their mindset about themselves. By opening up to God, you allow yourself to heal on the inside and broaden your awareness of that higher power.
Ready to take advantage of the healing benefits of AA? Call us at 800-839-1686Who Answers? and we can help guide you to a group that meets in your local area.