The 12 Steps for Everyone [Step 6]

Hola mi Gente,
Today: my continuation of the series on the 12 steps.


06-09-16_ The 12 Steps [Step 6]

We were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
— Step Six of Narcotics Anonymous

The readiness is all.
— William Shakespeare


I believe that the concept of willingness is one that isn’t given its rightful due — especially when it comes to relationships. Willingness here not being the narrowly defined ego-will we might think of when we think of “will” or “will power.”

Willingness is important enough in everything we endeavor to do whether it be spirituality, self-improvement, learning, relationships, etc. Our willingness or lack thereof, is key in all our activities.

I remember reading somewhere, or someone telling me (I forget which), that it was not enough to believe, that there had to be a willing to believe. At that time, I was a bit confused about this, “Does this mean willpower?” I asked myself. This was during my early process of attempting a relationship with myself, which I will define here as my spiritual journey. Over time, I have come to understand willingness differently. For me, willingness entails two important components. One is surrender, the other acceptance.

Surrender/ Acceptance

By surrender I don’t mean hopelessness or humiliation, or “giving up.” Surrender, in this context, is knowing, in a very deep sense, that the concept of total control is flawed and ineffective. Surrender in this sense is clearing the way to create an open space and preparing myself to be in more harmony with the world. Realizing that there are aspects of my life over which I have no control, I can become ready to be changed by surrendering to this truth. In surrender, I become ready (willing) to be changed.

That makes all the difference…

I can be wrong, but my own experience has shown me that love — true love — is about change, about transformation. It is about the willingness to let go of character traits that hold us back. It’s only when we try to control the process that it eludes our grasp. I could be wrong, though.

But surrender is not enough. We have not arrived at true willingness unless it contains another ingredient — acceptance. When I accept the truth of surrender I am already changed, I am more in line with nature and the universe. I can’t force family harmony into my life, but I can become ready to be harmonious. I can’t make a lasting love appear for me on command, but I can become ready (willing) for such a relationship when the opportunity arises.

Willingness is what I look for most in a relationship. It’s more important than looks or attitude, or sexual prowess — all of that is meaningless without willingness. When I first read internet profiles on dating sites that go on at length about the qualities being sought, I am completely, utterly amazed. Sometimes it seems that some of us are looking for “The One” who will fit our wish list of qualities. Here’s my Christmas wish list, Santa! It’s as if we’re still little boys and girls buying into the fairy tales of perfection

But my question to you is really quite simple: are you ready to surrender? Are you truly willing? Are you willing to become completely vulnerable and naked? Because what I am striving for is to become ready — not perfect, nor to satisfy a superficial list of ego needs and wants. So, my question for you is…

Are you ready?

My name I Eddie and I’m in recovery from civilization…