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What Makes A Meeting Great?

PostPosted: Tue Nov 14, 2017 1:48 pm
by FYI
The forums will from time to time put up topics like this, in the hope that members will find them interesting enough to start a discussion.

Re: What Makes A Meeting Great?

PostPosted: Tue Nov 14, 2017 3:57 pm
by Brock
Most AA’s would say they have never been to a ‘bad’ meeting, but some are better than others. It’s probably easier to list the things we don’t like to see, like endless drunkalogs which help others identify but leave out the solution and hope, and those where members moan and grown about problems in their lives. So meetings without these things, where a lot of hope for a happy life is given to newcomers, where members keep personal problems between themselves and their sponsors, where people speak for a reasonable time and don’t ramble on and on. The occasions I have been to such meetings I have left feeling great, and feeling the meeting was great.

Re: What Makes A Meeting Great?

PostPosted: Tue Nov 14, 2017 7:14 pm
by Db1105
I never know Who, or Through, or To, one's Higher Power speaks. It's all good.

Re: What Makes A Meeting Great?

PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2017 1:37 am
by gaftech
For me, there are several factors that make up a great meeting, the most important of which is my attitude. Back in 1986 and 1996 I was in the Navy and on both occasions my drinking habits got me into trouble. The Navy decided I needed rehabilitation, so I did as I as told and afterward attended the requisite number of meetings. Back then, I didn't want to be there because I didn't think I had that big of a problem...I just went a little overboard a couple of times. When I attended the meetings all I could see were a bunch of people moaning and griping about how their life was hell while they were drinking and that AA "saved" them from the demon rum. I had no interest in their problems and felt that I would never let my drinking get that out of hand. Fast forward to October 16, 2007. While my life wasn't a living hell, it surely wasn't as good as it could be. I actually got tired of the roller coaster ride and made the decision to stop drinking on my own. When I went to my first meeting that night, I was a little apprehensive, but I was quickly put at ease by the people that welcomed me. I was also amazed at how comfortable I felt. A little shy at first, but that was quickly overcome.

Over the last 30 days I've attended a variety of types and places of meetings and found that, for me, the smaller the meeting, the less welcomed I felt. Perhaps there was a cliquishness (is that a word?) going on or perhaps I just felt more comfortable in larger meetings. I've not hesitated to share when I felt the need, no matter which meeting I was attending, but I definitely felt more comfortable in the larger meetings.

All in all, what really makes a meeting great for me is the people I meet and interact with and the fellowship with the group as a whole.

Re: What Makes A Meeting Great?

PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2017 2:48 am
by positrac
For me I would prefer a BB study/12X12, as Bill see's it or some kind of literature based meeting because education of our disease and solutions to provide a better life are what attracted me to liked meetings. OD meetings are ok and if my backside is on fire it does meet the check in the block and opinions vary on what is good and what is not. Weeding out some of the daily replay logs that never change is not helpful and might keep them sober and makes us bored.....I say if you can't find it here then go to another location until you find the message that relates.

Re: What Makes A Meeting Great?

PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2017 4:34 am
by avaneesh912
I have switched to a larger group where I live. Most meetings is about losing control after they take that first drink. So I try to share my experience of the struggle after every time I attempted to stay stopped. The spiritual malady that led me back to the first drink and eventually the solution. I enjoy going to the Correction facility, where I know the people though few who attend the meeting will be there for genuine reason. I see younger generation around 20-30 taking control of the fellowship around where I live, which is a great thing, more and more people are shifting focus back to the big book, to better understand the problem and solution from the main text. I realized the main focus for me is to help newcomers so I try to say a word or two after the meeting.

Re: What Makes A Meeting Great?

PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2017 6:46 am
by tomsteve
What Makes A Meeting Great?

my motive for being there and my attitude

Re: What Makes A Meeting Great?

PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2017 8:34 am
by clouds
I like meetings where people share from their own experience, whatever it is.

If the meeting is Step based I probably will like it better as then people share from their own experience on how they do the 12 steps. I can see what works for them, and think about what works for me and maybe see something better than how I have been doing it, or see how some things people do or don't do doesn't work very well.

I still hear things I need to hear, seems to be a 'God's will not mine' type thing.

Re: What Makes A Meeting Great?

PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2017 9:44 am
by Roberth
What Makes A Meeting Great? The best meeting I have ever been to was when I fairly new and heard my story coming out of someone else’s mouth. I don’t know if anyone else got anything out of it but it was the turning point in my sobriety. Was it a great meeting for anyone else, I don’t have a clue. I am willing to bet if someone gets what they needed out of a meeting it was great for them. To me that’s a great meeting……..

Re: What Makes A Meeting Great?

PostPosted: Thu Nov 16, 2017 6:13 am
by desypete
what makes a good meeting for me is if a new comer is around, i can be of some use

meetings for me these days are not about me or what i want to hear, meetings these days are more for me to be present and ready to help others

meetings keep my mind sharp, i get direction from others in the fellowship time and time again
for example one old timer who lost his wife of 50 years came to the fellowship in bits, no one could do anything for him but what he did was show us all that even when you lose your soul mate, there is no need to pick up a drink on it
a shining example of when the chips are down that aa works

his example helped me when it was my own turn to lose my son i knew what i must do in order to hang in there not that i ever wanted to drink but i certainly didnt want to live either but i did like he did
i kept on coming back
its all simple little things like that which have set the examples for me in aa

the same way as a new comer comes to the rooms and see happy sober people, they set the example of what they can have to should the new comer want it

i hope there will never come a day on my journey where i get complacent or i think i know what is best for anyone else in aa

time and time again i see that attitude with some members in our fellowship and i know were it leads and it certainly isnt a happy contented sobriety but the good thing is when i see it in others is it set the example of how i dont want to be

it really is amazing what you can get out of a meeting some good some bad some ugly but all does me good

Re: What Makes A Meeting Great?

PostPosted: Thu Nov 16, 2017 8:31 am
by Brock
What Makes A Meeting Great?

my motive for being there and my attitude

Short answers like these have truth in them, but sometimes even the best of motives and attitudes can’t stand up. My motive is usually to try and help others, and perhaps hear something which helps me, and my attitude is usually positive. But new members are a rare site in my area, and the speakers generally say the same thing week in week out, or those who think AA is a support group for life’s problems, speak about their latest challenge, attitudes shift to being not very positive, and I start getting less motivated about attending meetings.

Then when someone spouts one of those tired old sayings, like you should see that as an opportunity to practice patience, or be the change you want to see, or if there are no newcomers go out and find some, I become motivated to hit them on the head with my big book. Because I have been doing that for years, but it becomes tiresome, so to me the best bet is choose what meetings most closely follow the literature, and for your own serenity avoid the rest.

Re: What Makes A Meeting Great?

PostPosted: Fri Nov 17, 2017 5:47 am
by desypete
Brock wrote:
What Makes A Meeting Great?

my motive for being there and my attitude

Short answers like these have truth in them, but sometimes even the best of motives and attitudes can’t stand up. My motive is usually to try and help others, and perhaps hear something which helps me, and my attitude is usually positive. But new members are a rare site in my area, and the speakers generally say the same thing week in week out, or those who think AA is a support group for life’s problems, speak about their latest challenge, attitudes shift to being not very positive, and I start getting less motivated about attending meetings.

Then when someone spouts one of those tired old sayings, like you should see that as an opportunity to practice patience, or be the change you want to see, or if there are no newcomers go out and find some, I become motivated to hit them on the head with my big book. Because I have been doing that for years, but it becomes tiresome, so to me the best bet is choose what meetings most closely follow the literature, and for your own serenity avoid the rest.


fuuny you should mention hitting people over the head with the book
i have to confess the obsession i have to hit book thumpers around the head with the book. i see them as our self righteous members some are really bad and in your face with there arrogant ways
but i have to work my program and resist the temptation =biggrin

at least we share that same desire with the book so there is progress

Re: What Makes A Meeting Great?

PostPosted: Fri Nov 17, 2017 10:51 am
by Layne
For some reason, when I look for the similarities, the meetings are great. When I look for the differences, the meetings suck.

Re: What Makes A Meeting Great?

PostPosted: Fri Nov 17, 2017 11:10 am
by Layne
The endless drinkalogs, the moaning and groaning about problems in their lives, the people who can't understand why not everyone is on the same page; they are all there in one form or another which is about...alcoholism.

Re: What Makes A Meeting Great?

PostPosted: Sat Nov 18, 2017 6:12 am
by desypete
Layne wrote:The endless drinkalogs, the moaning and groaning about problems in their lives, the people who can't understand why not everyone is on the same page; they are all there in one form or another which is about...alcoholism.


the endless drunk a log is what got me to come back again, as i got id from those who shared in that way ( 12 years on i never forget that fact )
the moaning as people call it is more like people are there sharing from there hearts and if there facing problems in there lives then i would rather they share them with us in the rooms than keep quiet about it and let it grow as we all know where that leads

over here in the uk our groups are very close knit or most of them are, we like to try to be there for all our members we believe in our fellowship and its ability to help others new comers or old timers
just because someone has been around a long time doesn't mean they might not want someone to ask them how they are once in a while

i have seen a good few old timers lose there life long partners in the last couple of years in the rooms, they have not moaned about it in a selfish self pity way but have tried to cope with the loss with such dignity
can anyone really imagine what life would be like for them going home from the meetings to an empty home ?

some people should count there lucky stars it hasn't happend to them yet but if and when it does aa i hope will be there for them to lean on or they can curl up in a ball and isolate as they can not accept being alone

but people come into our fellowship for help and love and that means everyone no matter how long they might of been around and if anyone is really working there program then that is exactly the sort of attitude they would be having instead of complaining about how others find there help

well that is my moan over =biggrin