The word integral means whole. You acquire and maintain integrity when your behavior generally matches your values. In considering your integrity, look at your values, those things you find Worthwhile or desirable. If you value honesty, the dishonesty of your addictive behavior will cause you pain. The Twelve Steps work for people who value honesty and living life on a spiritual basis.

Losing Integrity

Addictive behavior is often incompatible with integrity. You may find yourself stealing booze, drugs, or food, lying about what you drink, use, or eat, blaming others because you broke your sobriety, your diet, or your abstinence, and doing other things that may violate your value system.

A subtle erosion of integrity happens with attitudes like entitlement. This means that you believe you are entitled to certain things. If you go to a restaurant that has high prices, you may think you deserve to steal things from the table. In recovery you will find freedom as your sense of honesty becomes more keen. It has to do with doing what is right.

Regaining Integrity

Working the Steps restores your integrity, through being honest with yourself and others, working on your character defects, making amends, and improving the contact with your Higher Power or Program.

Importance in Recovery

You feel better about yourself when you are honest, when you show you care about others, and when your behavior generally matches your values. This integrity is the foundation for the freedom and spontaneity that recovery offers.

Integrity & values, see also: Attitudes, Behavior, Beliefs, Delusion, Half-measures, Higher Power, Honesty, Humility, Inventory, Judgment, Power, Prayer & meditation, Program, Recovery, Secular spirituality, Self-centeredness, Spiritual aspects, Spirituality, Steps of AA.

Updated 11 Sep 2015

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Addictionary 2 by Jan & Judy Wilson

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