Step Eleven

Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact
with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of
His will for us and the power to carry that out.

Leader's Share and Step Questions

Hi everyone My name is Shlomo I am a compulsive overeater and leader of this workshop.

ASSIGNMENT 1: Read pages 85 last paragraph to page 88 in the Big Book. Copy the sentences that speak to you. Copy the sentences that give you new information. Reflect and share with us.

ASSIGNMENT 2: Read step ten in the AA 12&12 pages 89, 93-95 which discuss the daily review of the day. Copy the sentences that speak to you. Copy the sentences that give you new information. Reflect and share with us.

In the previous post we discussed prayer and meditation in the framework of Step 11. But that is not all there is to step 11. The Big Book gives Specific detailed suggestions on working step 11 at night, in the morning And during the day. Chapter Into action pages 85-88 Let us see the "at night" suggestions: "When we retire at night, we constructively review our day. Were we Resentful, selfish, dishonest or afraid? Do we owe an apology? Have we kept Something to ourselves which should be discussed with another person at Once? Were we kind and loving toward all? What could we have done better? Were we thinking of ourselves most of the time? Or were we thinking of what We could do for others, of what we could pack into the stream of life? But We must be careful not to drift into worry, remorse or morbid reflection, For that would diminish our usefulness to others. After making our review we ask God's forgiveness and inquire what corrective measures should be taken." Page 86.

We see here that at night we make a constructive review of our day. We don't do this review in order to criticize ourselves, but in order to learn from our mistakes and correct them, and in order to further develop and grow on he spiritual path. The suggestions are quite similar to the spot check suggestions of step ten. But here we do an in-depth job on our whole day. Since it is not a quick spot check, I suggest we do it in writing which for me is always preferred to doing it in my head.

Let me list the suggestions here, as a list of questions to answer every evening, preferably in writing:

LIST OF QUESTIONS TO BE ANSWERED AT NIGHT IN ORDER TO REVIEW THE DAY. 1. Was I resentful today? If the answer is YES, then I ask: Am I still resentful now? If the answer is YES, I do step 4, preferably in writing (resentment table), continue with Step 5 by sharing with someone, who does not necessarily have to be the Sponsor, and continue with steps 6 and 7.

2. Was I selfish today? If yes, ask God to remove the defect and practice the conjugate asset

3. Was I dishonest today? If yes, ask God to remove the defect and practice the conjugate asset

4. Was I afraid today? If the answer is YES, I ask: am I still afraid? If the answer is still YES, I work step 4 on the fear (fill a fear table), share with someone and Continue with steps 6 and 7 on the fear.

5. Do I owe an amend today? If the answer is YES I do step 4 on harm done to others, share with someone And continue with steps 6-9. I set a near time for making amends, usually tomorrow.

6. Have I kept something to myself that should be discussed with another person at once today? If the answer is YES, I share with someone now, or if that is not possible, than I commit to sharing tomorrow.

7. Was I thinking of myself most of the time today? If the answer is YES, then I think on what I can do to be of more use to H.P and others, and commit to doing something about it this evening or tomorrow

8. Was I kind towards all today? If the answer is NO, then I commit to being kind this evening to my family And commit to being more kind to others tomorrow.

9. Was I loving towards all today? If the answer is NO, I pray to God to make me more loving. Personally I don't think I can be loving towards all yet, so according to the situation I commit to use more restraint in the worst case. In other cases I commit to be more accepting and less critical, and in the easier cases I commit to be more Loving. Some of these things I can begin practicing with my family this evening and some I commit to practice at work tomorrow, or wherever I may be and I try to be specific.

10. What could I have done better today? Here I check what I did during my day and ask myself what improvements I Could make in my words and actions. Then I commit to making them tomorrow to the best of my ability.

11. Was I thinking of what I could do for others today? If NOT than I think about it now and commit to do some specific things for others this evening and tomorrow.

12. Was I thinking of what I could pack into the stream of life today? If NOT, than I do it now. It can be some spiritual endeavor, or being more efficient (not loafing at my work, etc.) and commit to do something about it this evening or tomorrow. I take care to make all my commitments as triple commitments, to myself, to H.P. and to someone else.

It is interesting to note that there are 12 questions. The first 7 deal with checking for actions based on self will. The last 5 questions deal with checking for actions based on God's will. Therefore this is a balanced review. Doing it every night works miracles.

Now a remark: There is a difference between asking "was I resentful today" and "was I angry today?" Anger is a feeling that arises and is dissipated after a short time. A resentment is a feeling that I carry with me for a long time. It can even be many years. If I became angry during the day and the anger didn't disappear and is still with me in the evening then it means that it turned into a resentment.

A possible definition of resentment is: A feeling of continuous anger for a real or imaginary provocation or insult. It can also manifest by blaming others or hating others.

After answering all those questions and committing to do some actions, I remind myself that I must be careful not to drift into worry, remorse or morbid reflection, for that would diminish my usefulness to others. Then I Say a prayer of my choice.

Is this all there is to this daily review at night you may ask. The answer is NO. The AA 12 and 12 has some additional suggestions. The suggestions appear in the chapter on step ten. That's probably the reason why this daily review at night is also called "step ten" by a lot of people. I still prefer to call it "step 11 at night" since this is the way it is arranged in the Big Book, and it reminds me that there is a step ten that is a spot check during the day, and that it should not be ignored. But the names are not that important. What is important is the actions we take.

The A.A. 12 & 12 Step 10 pages 93-95 Expands the Big Book's explanations and tells us to be aware of defects that masquerade as assets. It also tells us that our daily review should include not only what we did wrong, but also what we did right

In order to balance the daily review , we write a two column list. In the left column make a list (one under the other) of all the things that pleased you during that day. In the second column beside each item on the list, write down what Talents, Strengths, Abilities or Qualities in you enabled that positive experience to occur.

EXAMPLE: One of the items on your list for today may be this step workshop. So write that down as something that pleased you, then list what in you enabled you to participate in this workshop, such as commitment to self, open mindedness, willingness to explore, your talent at learning, willingness to confront difficult issues, etc. This table will be called DAILY REVIEW OF RIGHT THINGS IN MY LIFE.

Now look over the assets listed in the second column of your daily review. Compare them to the assets on your GENERAL PERSONAL ASSET LIST that we did in step seven. Add to the GENERAL ASSET LIST, any additional assets that appear on your DAILY REVIEW.

As you can see you fill a new "daily review of right things" every evening. The "personal general asset list" is not written anew every evening, but it grows as You add to it assets from your daily review.

After doing it you read your enlarged asset list aloud every day. The process for developing a daily asset list and asset review, Essentially deals with weakening our vulnerability in the areas of self-trust, self-worth, self-love, etc. When they weaken, a lot of our defensive behaviors are not needed anymore and they diminish and vanish. Therefore I consider this procedure a blanket treatment that covers a lot of cases. I think it is very important and I highly recommend practicing it on a daily basis.

An ESH suggestion that I add here is the following: Before getting into bed to sleep I ask H.P. To guide me during my sleep. This is a real bonus. I sometimes get guidance during dreams and sometimes When I wake up in the morning I just know the answer to a problem that bothered me. Try it and see how it works for you.

So far we dealt with what do do at night. Now we will deal with what to do in the morning when we wake up.

STEP 11 IN THE MORNING: It is written in the Big Book, chapter Into Action Page 86. "On awakening let us think about the twenty-four hours ahead. We consider Our plans for the day. Before we begin, we ask God to direct our thinking, Especially asking that it be divorced from self-pity, dishonest or self-seeking motives."

We see that the Big Book suggests we begin the morning with a prayer. A day that is God-directed is a day of recovery. Here is what the Big Book Has to say about it: "Under these conditions we can employ our mental faculties with assurance, For after all God gave us brains to use. Our thought-life will be placed on a much higher plane when our thinking is cleared of wrong motives." Page 86.

But how do we get directions from God? By listening to them. Which means That after saying the prayer and asking God to direct our thinking we have To do our morning meditation in order to get our directions.

The Big Book gives us some meditation suggestions: "In thinking about our day we may face indecision. We may not be able to Determine which course to take. Here we ask God for inspiration, an Intuitive thought or a decision. We relax and take it easy. We don't Struggle. We are often surprised how the right answers come after we have Tried this for a while. What used to be the hunch or the occasional Inspiration gradually becomes a working part of the mind. Being still Inexperienced and having just made conscious contact with God, it is not Probable that we are going to be inspired at all times. We might pay for This presumption in all sorts of absurd actions and ideas. Nevertheless, we Find that our thinking will, as time passes, be more and more on the plane Of inspiration. We come to rely upon it." pages 86-87. The meditation suggestions are similar to the suggestions for Quiet Time Meditation, Which we discussed in my previous share. The suggestions For Quiet Time Meditation add writing, which is just a tool to help us Remember God's messages, and it adds examining our writing to discriminate Between self will thoughts and God thoughts.

The Big Book suggests we end the meditation with a prayer. " that we be shown all through the day what our next step is to be, That we be given whatever we need to take care of such problems. We ask especially for freedom from self-will..." It should be noticed that in praying we don't ask to be shown complete projects, just the next step. I think the reason is simply that the following step is dependent on what we do in the present

There is yet a "during the day" suggestion that helps us avoid upheaval of emotions before it develops

Big Book Into Action pages 87-88 "As we go through the day we pause, when agitated or doubtful, and ask for the right thought or action. We constantly remind ourselves we are no longer running the show, Humbly saying to ourselves many times a day THY WILL NOT MINE BE DONE. We are than in much less danger of excitement, fear, anger, worry, self pity or foolish decisions."

And a promise " IT WORKS IT REALLY DOES."

It seems like quite a lot of work but practice makes it easy and a natural way of life. A much better and happier life.

LET ME ORDER WHAT I SHARED HERE IN A NUTSHELL. We do the actions of step eleven during the day, Several times as needed. I call it traffic control. We stop to control our emotions and remind ourselves that we are not running the show. This can take a minute or two each time. If this does not help and our character defects arise we do step ten which is on the spot check and repair. At night we do a step 11 review of our day as described in this share, and in the morning we do our prayer and meditation.

ADDITIONAL ACTION ASSIGNMENTS FOR STEP 11: 1. Read the Big Book Into action pages 84-88 every day

2. Practice the "step eleven during the day" a few times a day even if you feel OK

4. Practice step ten as needed

5. Do step eleven at night every night or if you cannot do it at night do it in the morning. Get up earlier if needed. Remember to answer the review questions as explained in this share. Remember to balance the review with the daily review of the right things in your life. write them in a table as explained here Read aloud your personal expanded general asset list. Pray for guidance when you lie to sleep.

6. Do step 11 in the morning every day. That includes prayer and meditation.

Share the daily work of steps 10-11 with us.

Have a nice and fruitful day


Step One
Step Two
Step Three
Step Four-part one
Step Four-part two
Step Four-part three
Step Four-part four
Step Four-part five
Step Five
Step Six
Step Seven
Step Eight
Step Nine
Step Ten
Step Eleven

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