Step 1: Honesty -- After many years of denial, recovery can begin when with one simple admission of being powerless over alcohol -- for alcoholics and their friends and family.

Step 2: Faith -- It seems to be a spiritual truth, that before a higher power can begin to operate, you must first believe that it can.

Step 3: Surrender -- A lifetime of self-will run riot can come to a screeching halt, and change forever, by making a simple decision to turn it all over to a higher power.

Step 4: Soul Searching -- There is a saying in the 12-step programs that recovery is a process, not an event. The same can be said for this step -- more will surely be revealed.

Step 5: Integrity -- Probably the most difficult of all the steps to face, Step 5 is also the one that provides the greatest opportunity for growth.

Step 6: Acceptance -- The key to Step 6 is acceptance -- accepting character defects exactly as they are and becoming entirely willing to let them go.

Step 7: Humility -- The spiritual focus of Step 7 is humility, asking a higher power to do something that cannot be done by self-will or mere determination.

Step 8: Willingness -- Making a list of those harmed before coming into recovery may sound simple. Becoming willing to actually make those amends is the difficult part.

Step 9: Forgiveness -- Making amends may seem like a bitter pill to swallow, but for those serious about recovery it can be great medicine for the spirit and soul.

Step 10: Maintenance -- Nobody likes to admit to being wrong. But it is absolutely necessary to maintain spiritual progress in recovery.

Step 11: Making Contact -- The purpose of Step 11 is to discover the plan God as you understand Him has for your life.

Step 12: Service -- For those in recovery programs, practicing Step 12 is simply "How It Works."

The 12 Principles of the Steps