Step 1

We admitted we were powerless over alcohol – that our lives had become unmanageable. 

Our admissions of personal powerlessness finally turn out to be the firm bedrock upon which happy and purposeful lives can be built.

Bill W. – 12 Steps and 12 Traditions

Tradition 1

Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon AA unity.

We see that without substantial unity there can be no AA, and that without AA there can be little lasting recovery for anyone. 

Bill W. – letter to The Grapevine, December 1947

Concept 1 

Final responsibility and ultimate authority for AA World Services should always reside in the collective conscience of our whole Fellowship.

We believe that we see in our Fellowship a spiritualized society characterized by enough enlightenment, enough responsibility and enough love of man and of God to insure that our democracy of world service will work under all conditions.

Bill W. – Twelve Concepts for World Service

Featured Step 1 Promises

The feeling of having shared in a common peril is one element in the powerful cement which binds us. The tremendous fact for every one of us is that we have discovered a common solution. We have a way out on which we can absolutely agree, and upon which we can join in brotherly and harmonious action. This is the great news this book carries to those who suffer from alcoholism. (p. 17)

Yes, there is a substitute and it is vastly more than that. It is a fellowship in Alcoholics Anonymous. There you will find release from care, boredom, and worry. Your imagination will be fired. Life will mean something at last. The most satisfactory years of your existence lie ahead. Thus we find the fellowship, and so will you. (p. 152) You will be bound to them with new and wonderful ties, for you will escape disaster together and you will commence shoulder to shoulder your common journey. Then you will know what it means to give of yourself that others may survive and rediscover life. You will learn the full meaning of “Love thy neighbor as thyself.” (p. 152)

We shall be with you in the Fellowship of the Spirit, and you will surely meet some of us as you trudge the Road of Happy Destiny. (p. 164)

Bill W. – The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous