Is the point in numbering our twelve steps, simply take it one at a time?
In our rooms, I often hear folks say, the Steps are in order for a reason. Yet I've found my gut balking. Once I finally allowed myself to investigate, it came to me that if the Steps are suggested, even their order can be "tweaked." Right?
A common saying, "two steps forward, one step back," might support that. For when we leap, we must self-correct. To end up where we needed to be after all--one step forward.
But to be honest, I did the Steps much more "out of order", to make them work for me.
How badly out of order? I don't think I forced any step or did an apology before I was ready. No, I just did Step Eleven long before I did any other action Step in the program!
Using the Twelve Step Plus approach (including therapy) I started rebuilding my faith in my Higher Power by doing a gratitude practice each day for three months. At my therapist's advice. I later came to realize gratitude is a potent form of prayer or Step Eleven. In hindsight I see that practicing gratitude helped me to look for, and find, the good in my life, and reconnect with my Higher Power.
Without Step Eleven, very early in my recovery, I could not have had the faith in Love that I needed in order to turn my will and life over to Its care. Today that makes sense to me, but only after a lot of introspection.
I've seen it happen that way for others too. Some newcomers use the Steps ONLY as a guide, and decide from careful reflection, where they most need to begin their work.
Some conclude that where they start is not so important, if after all, they'll come back to these steps again and again in the work of rebuilding their lives.
That has made me wonder if it might help to see our Steps as more of a circle dance. In this way, we each might be at the Center of a circle, using a given step when we need it, to move through our own "cycle" of recovery.