7 Ways Self-Honesty in DA Promise 11 Leads to Solvency


Thought for today:

In DA, Solvency means to not incur unsecured debt, one day at a time.  Whether or not we still have debt we incurred before DA doesn’t stop us from being solvent today.

All it takes is that we transform our relationship to money and people, and that takes some heavy doses of self-honesty.  Then, we can go through the Steps, to learn when and how to be honest.

We don’t want to be cruelly honest, though.  If we are angry, or if it would hurt others to be totally honest right away, we don’t go there.

DA Promise 11:

11. Honesty will guide our actions towards a rich life filled with meaning and purpose.

A member shares:

“Before DA, I suffered from isolation and anxiety over money.  I felt ashamed of myself and how far in debt I had gotten.  It was like I had a coat of armor.

“Once I found DA, I wished someone would bail me out of my problems.  I needed help to break through and get help.  They told me in meetings that I had to get honest with myself first, and eventually live honestly with others, and that I needed members to help me with that.

“My sponsor and Pressure Group broke through my denial and pride when it came to my under earning and overspending.  They challenged my idea that I had to use credit cards to survive and pay for diapers and food.  I started from a bottom where I had to question all my assumptions about money.

“My fear left gradually.  The more I learned to communicate – with myself, with family, and with creditors, the freer I felt.  I realized I had lived without dignity for so long that it had become a habit.

“Looking back, I see that I needed the fellowship’s help in putting a chink in my armor.  This allowed the sunlight to enter into my days, and I have been solvent ever since.”

What kinds of honesty do I think about when talking about DA Promise 11?

DA can help us learn how best to make honesty a habit, and it all begins with self-honesty:

  • Self honesty: A willingness to look at ourselves, the good and the bad; to look at what it means to live within our means; to ask for what we need.
  • Numbers honesty: Letting the truth in the numbers speak to us; acting on that truth, and learning about our spending.
  • Creditor honesty: Expressing a willingness to pay the debt when we have the money, and not to commit to a payment schedule we can’t possibly honor.
  • Family honesty: When to tell family we really can’t spend a lot on holiday gifts; when not to be honest if it would hurt others unnecessarily.
  • Fellowship honesty:  Are we letting people get to know the real us?  If we do, we will feel less isolated.  Someone may have actually gone through the same situation and help.  Or we may help someone else.
  • Sponsorship honesty: We are as sick as our secrets; we need to find ways to share who we really are.
  • Primary purpose integrity: Are we willing to say “no” to extra activities that interfere with our program or our personal, spiritual or financial goals?”


Am I honest with myself?

Meditation for today:

Honesty brings its own rewards.  For example, it’s easier to make decisions, we appreciate others, and we discover who we really are.  We learn much about ourselves once we let go of the fear of letting others know us.

Affirmations for today:

“When I am honest with myself, I can see admirable qualities.”

“Honesty guides my thinking and my actions.”

Recommended reading: 

DA’s Eighth Tool is D.A. and A.A. Literature: “We study the literature of Debtors Anonymous and of Alcoholics Anonymous to strengthen our understanding of compulsive disease and of recovery from compulsive debting.”

The Best Of Bill (With Bill’s essay on honesty)

Alcoholics Anonymous Big Book (Stories of AA’s recovering using the Twelve Steps)

Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions (Bill W.’s definitive guide)

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