CoDA is a life-transforming program utilizing the 12 steps to clear away the unhealthy relationship patterns carried from our family and life situations.
Monday at 6PM and Tuesday at 1:11 the Community House hosts traditional book and reading meetings, whereas the Wednesday meeting asks members to delve into the work of the program. In order to support those who wish to work the program of Co-Dependency, we will share our weekly workbook questions.
Wednesday 1:11 Workbook Meeting We use a variety of sources to get at the root of the problem and start to heal out old patterns and develop healthy ones.
Step 1 "We admitted we were powerless over others – than our lives had becomes unmanageable…”
1. Have you been trying to exert power or influence where you may, in reality, have none? Have you been trying to control someone or something, trying harder and harder with less and less beneficial results?
2. Who or what in your life is making you feel crazy & causing you stres9/1s? Whom do you feel victimized by? Who do you feel is now controlling you, your emotions, or some other area of your life? What situations, feelings, or realities have you been running from, denying or avoiding? 3. What would you have to face in your own life if you stopped trying to control someone or something? What might happen if you stopped allowing someone or something to control you?
4. What are some areas in your life that may reflect unmanageability? What is your current condition in these areas: emotions, finances, spirituality, physical health, and career? What are you doing for fun, pleasure and enjoyment?
5. What is the current state of your relationships with these people: Family, Friends, and CoWorkers? Do you have any relationships, or are you feeling alone and isolated?
6. Does your mind feel clear and consistent? Who are you holding responsible for your emotions, finances, and health? Who are you holding responsible for the state of your relationships?
7. What are you doing in your life that you feel resentful about? What do you feel you have to do but don’t want to do? In what areas of your life do you feel you have no choices, no options? Who or what is trapping you? Who do you most want to say something to? Why can’t you say it?
8. What is the particular incident that propelled you to begin attending a 12 Step group? If attending for a while, what is the issue that has been plaguing you most recently? Who or what are you most worried about? When was the last time you did something loving and nurturing for yourself? Is there someone in your life that you feel is causing you misery? Do you feel that if she or she behaved differently, you would be happy?
Step 2 "Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity."
1. What are the activities that bring you hope and help you believe things are OK and will be OK? Going to meetings? Talking with recovering people? Reading recovery literature? Name those who have helped you to believe the most in your future.
2. How have your ideas changed about what it means to be restored to sanity? How have your expectations about recovery changed? What do you expect from recovery now that is different from what you expected when you first began recovering?
3. For now, how do you define a Power greater than yourself? Do you believe that Power cares about you?
4. What is a reasonable plan of self-care for you to help you continue to believe that recovery can, and will, work for you? Look again at your ideas in question 1 above.
5. What has been done for others in recovery that you would like to happen for yourself? Do you believe that is possible?
6. Make a list of areas in your life where you would like to be restored. Your goals will be more effective if they center around restoring your own life rather than someone else’s. Step 3 "Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of our Higher Power."
1. To remember this step, write an affirmation such as “I have turned my life and my will over to the care of God today. All is well”.
2. If you knew all was on schedule in your life how would you feel? If you knew that things were being managed by a Power greater than yourself in a way that would work out in your best interests, how would you act differently?
3. If you knew that you had no power to control events, outcomes, or a particular person, how would you behave differently? What would you say or do? What would you stop saying or doing? What would you do differently for yourself in order to enjoy your own life now, to live in the present moment?
4. If you weren’t allowing someone else to control you, what would you be doing differently? What would you do today with your life? How would you feel?
5. If you weren’t allowing a particular circumstance to control you, or if you weren’t trying to control that circumstance – if you just let it be and accepted it as okay for the present moment how would you feel? If you weren’t fighting with or resisting this circumstance what would you be doing? How would you be feeling?
6. Taking this Step often puts you in touch with yourself. Listen to yourself. Write about what you feel, want, need, and think. Then pick up the phone and share who you are with someone safe, someone you trust. Talk in a way that reflects self-responsibility, not victimization. Don’t ask them to rescue you. Ask them to listen and accept you as you are.
7. What is the most loving, most nurturing thing available to you right now you can use to take care of yourself and enjoy life? What will you do with it?
Step 4 "Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves."
1. What old beliefs are you carrying from your past? What dysfunction(s) did you grow up in and around in your family origin?
2. What old feelings do you still carry from your family of origin? What do you most wish to let go of that you carry from your family of origin?
Question 3. What are your strongest co-dependent characteristics and behaviors?
Who are the people you most often fall into these patterns with?
LIST OF SOME CHARACTERISTICS: Caretaking, controlling, repressing feelings, not dealing with feelings appropriately, manipulation, self-neglect, not taking responsibility for ourselves, worrying, constantly criticizing ourselves and our efforts, feeling that we can’t do “it” well enough (whatever it is), not liking and loving ourselves, not allowing others to like and love us, not nurturing ourselves or allowing ourselves to receive the nurturing, we want and need, using denial as a coping tool, feeling victimized, allowing ourselves to be victimized, not setting boundaries, not trusting our feelings and instincts, not trusting God, not trusting life and recovery, feeling unsafe, lack of intimacy and fulfillment in relationships, earned and unearned guilt, having sex with people when we don’t really want to, engaging in sexual behaviors we aren’t comfortable with in order to please another, obsessing, being dependent on others, communicating poorly, dishonesty (emotionally or otherwise), not saying no when we mean no, not saying what we want and need, repressing our needs and wants, not feeling like we have a life of our own, low self-worth, believing we deserve little from people and life, perfectionism, unreasonable expectations of others, staying stuck or trapped in relationships, not owning our power with people, becoming rigid and inflexible, getting stuck in misery and negative thinking, not allow ourselves to have fun, unnecessarily depriving ourselves, expecting others to be responsible for us, martyrdom, unclear or unrealistic thinking, lack of spontaneity, fear of or inability to tackle and solve problems, negative beliefs about ourselves and our abilities, extreme shame, unresolved historical issues, unresolved abuse issues from our pasts, a sense of despair about our relationship history, confusing pain or longing with love, withdrawing from friendships, not tending to our daily and regular routine, being filled with fear and panic, a tendency to attract sick and needy people, a tendency to be attracted to dysfunctional relationships and situations, resentments, compulsive behaviors, addictive behaviors, suicidal thinking…. Question 4. Set a reasonable goal for doing this step and write your goal down. You don’t have to be exact, but think in terms of when you might be able to get it done.
What are some of the things that stand in your way?
Question 5. Do you feel blocked in any area of you life? Do you think it might be helpful to do a Fourth Step on that area?
Where do you feel blocked? How will the 4th step help become unblocked?
Step 5 “Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.”
Question 1. Have you taken a formal Fifth Step? What was the impact of that on your life and your feelings about yourself?
Question 2. Are you in the habit of sharing yourself – who you are – with other people? When was the last time you called someone because you needed to talk about something? Do you talk to people about what you’re going through when you going through it, or do you wait until you’ve resolved the incident yourself, then report it after the fact? When was the last time you reached out to another person to talk about something you were going through? What was it? How did it go? Do you talk to others while you’re going through something or afterwards? Why?
Question 3. Is there someone in your life now that you need to talk to? Is there something going on – a feeling, need, or an issue – that you don’t want to talk about, but need to? Is there someone you’re avoiding because you have something difficult to say?
Question 4. In the past week, have you treated yourself or another person badly? You may want to choose someone safe and trusted and tell that person what you have done, then tell God. Question 5. Each morning for the next week, when you wake up, take a moment to notice what you’re feeling. Often, we’re at our most vulnerable in those quiet moments before we begin the activity of the day. Check in with yourself emotionally. Take a moment to tell your Higher Power what you’re feeling. Tell yourself. Within the next four hours, sooner if possible, tell someone else what you were feeling. You don’t have to make a “feelings group’ out of it; just disclose honestly what you were feeling. Do this activity once more during the way – either at the end of the workday, after dinner, or during quiet in the evening.
Step 6 “Were entirely ready to have God/Higher Power remove all these defects of character” Question 1. What are the hard-to-handle beliefs, behaviors, feelings, wants, or needs that you’re struggling with right now? You may want to begin affirming that you are becoming ready to let go of these issues.
Question 2. How would it make your life different if you believed that you could just relax and let this process called recovery happen? How would it make your life different? What ways would it change what you do and how you live your life?
Question 3. Make a list of everything you would like changed about yourself. Include on it the things you would like to stop doing, things you would like to start doing, any family-of-origin work you’d like to accomplish, things you’d like to get and have. Put everything you can think of on the list, everything you’d like to be a part of your future. What would you like to change about yourself? What would you like to stop doing? What would you like to start doing? Family of origin work you want to do? Things you’d like to get and have.
Now put this list away and let go of every thing on it. Do you believe it’s safe to trust God and this process called recovery?
Step 7 “Humbly asked God (Higher Power) to remove our shortcomings”
Question 1. What are your fears about becoming changed. Write about them. Or talk about them with another person.
Question 2. How have you already seen yourself changed? How much of this did you actually have do to? How much were you empowered to do? Reflect on the gradual, natural nature of change in your life.
Question 3. Writing letters is a favorite tool. Write a letter to God, as you understand God. In that letter, talk about what bothers you and what you would like to see changed about you. Ask your Higher Power to help you change those things in yourself and your life that need changing.
Question 4. If in doubt about what character defects to work on now, ask God/Higher Power to show you clearly what issues in your life would be improved if you would work the Sixth and Seventh Steps on them.
Question 5. Do a creative visualization about yourself. Visualize in your mind yourself as you would like to become. See yourself doing and being all that you would like to do and be. Then let it go. Come back to now. Affirm that who you are is good. Affirm self-acceptance and self love for yourself in the present moment. ***What did you visualize yourself doing and being? ***Write an affirmation that who you are is good ***Write an affirmation of self-acceptance and self love for yourself in the present.
Step 8 "Made a list of all persons we had harmed and became willing to make amends to them all."
Question 1. Have you started your list yet? Have you made a mental list of the people you believe you have harmed?
Question 2. Would you like peace and healing in your relationships, even in those you don’t wish to maintain? What are the barriers to healing that are still within you?
Question 3. What are the relationships past and present, that bother you most?