ALL DA MEMBERS ARE WELCOME HERE
BDA is a distinct but not separate part of DA. Unfortunately, most of us who eventually find deeper, or at least additional, recovery in BDA — 12 more spiritual, conference-approved Tools if nothing else — first spend years in DA focused on recovery from debting and overspending, while our income and earning remains a mysterious problem for us, which continues to make us feel powerless, unmanageable, and sometimes insane. BDA is the #1 DA solution to dissatisfaction with our income and earning, and the BDA tools are a huge help in managing our time, especially our work time.
In one of our member's experience, he was 2.5 years solvent when he joined his first BDA home group in March 2017. At the time, he was living on an average of $8,000 per year — not a typo — and had been living on that annual amount since 2012, without debting since August 2014. That didn't change significantly in 2017 or 2018. Then in 2019 his annual net income increased to $23k, based on a new willingness to earn and guidance from his BDA sponsor and peeps, followed by $36k in both 2020 and 2021, during the pandemic, and it's been smooth sailing ever since. For a mostly retired person, working for pay an average 8 hours per week, he considers his resources generous, and he loves sharing them with others and with DA and BDA. And his financial results are small, if compared to most BDAers, because he's not motivated by money. In his own words:
"While maintaining my emphasis on solvency first — nine years in August 2014, thank you, God and DA and BDA! — and Steps second (and everything else third or later), including having a DA sponsor and working with others to host events with a shared DA and BDA emphasis, I have allowed BDA to change my life, including how I earn and receive money. I have completely surrendered my life, financial and otherwise, to my Higher Power, not just my spending, not just my relationship with money, but all of my life, through BDA. And the Higher Power has provided more in terms of happiness, wholeness, and freedom than I ever could have hoped for. These are the experiences that motivate me in my recovery. BDA was the missing element. Now I have to share about this miracle of my recovery in order to keep it."
There are some folks in our virtual BDA community, including regular ongoing registration and attendance in each cycle of the BDA Solvency Immersion Conference, who have made significant growth to both their business revenues and personal incomes.
One of our committed members joined BDA in late 2019, after a couple years in and out of DA, unable to get his spiritual needs met or even to get solvent while looking only at his spending. He has stuck with BDA since 2019. In 2019 his gross income was $85,000. In 2020, having taken the Steps and engaged with all elements of the DA and BDA program through the BDA Solvency Immersion Conference, and having claimed and maintained his solvency date since July 2020, his gross income grew to $120,000. In 2021, he has continued his own DA and BDA program work, has supported the various BDA recovery events through service and participation, has contributed generously to DA and BDA at every opportunity, and has formalized the separation between him and his business. In fact, he has been working his a** off in pursuit of his own business and personal visions, now that he knows what they are, and is enjoying the sanity and satisfaction that comes with working and knowing his and his business's numbers. As a result of his recovery and hard work, his gross business revenue for this year is currently $550,000 and his net, post-tax personal income is almost $200,000. That's cash money, almost $200,000 in cash money in his pocket for 2021, while leaving $115,000 in his business's savings and prudent reserve accounts, and paying all business expenses in cash too. His BDA recovery made this possible.
This is not an isolated incident in BDA. In fact, BDA supports and encourages our income and earning growth through practice of the dynamic program of DA and BDA, practiced as a single and complete spiritual activity.
One of our previously committed members joined BDA in 2018, got a sponsor, gave and received PRGs, but could not get solvent without a LOT more help than was being offered through her small local BDA group. She registered for the first BDA Solvency Immersion Conference, which began in January 2020, jumped in like her life depended on it, and worked through the first seven Steps (and the rest of the workshop materials through the Sevens) before getting sick and needing to take a break. Now she's pretty sure the sickness she experienced as she approached Step Eight was one more symptom of her debting disease. Regardless, she chose a new Steps- and Principles-focused — versus Tools-focused — BDA sponsor and jumped back in on the next conference cycle, starting on the Ones in July 2020, and she has never looked back. Not only has she been solvent since April 2020 — yay, God and DA! — but she kept her business running, sanely and mostly serenely, throughout the worldwide pandemic. She had her highest revenue month ever, more than $30,000, in November 2021. She next worked toward a vision, with a business income and spending plan developed in one of Hope for Debtors' BDA Business Planning Conferences in hand, of more than $500,000 in annual gross revenue for 2022, more than double her annual revenue pre-pandemic. Her BDA recovery made all of that and much more possible.
Yet it's not all about the money. In our experience, practicing the combined DA and BDA program is about surrendering our lives and businesses to our Higher Powers. Our Higher Powers are our employers, and we are their agents. If we generously offer our services to the world and do our work well, we will be well-compensated and well taken care of. That is our experience in DA and BDA.
One of our committed members says that his spiritual awakening (see Step 12) through AA, more than 30 years ago, was that he no longer wanted to kill himself, to remove himself physically from the planet. His spiritual awakening through DA and BDA, specifically through the BDA Solvency Immersion Conference is an unlimited sense and experience of worthiness. He feels worthy of everything he wants that he's also willing to work for and toward. He says "yes" to money, gifts, experiences, and opportunities without hesitation and feels worthy of and receptive to everything his Higher Power chooses to offer him. He gives credit for this new awakening and attitude to his recovery in BDA, specifically to his recovery work in this conference.
Most of us recovering debtors need to wake up and realize that we are worthy of everything good that's in our lives already and, usually, so much more. When we stop incurring new unsecured debt, one day at a time, no matter what, at home and work, we have the opportunity to see the world through whole new eyes. We might call those the "eyes of sanity." When we stop living beyond our means and do the work of the DA and BDA program through the 12 Steps, the other 24 Principles, the 24 Tools, and 12 Promises — for us, as offered through the BDA Solvency Immersion Conference — we can increase our ability to see sanely, and to develop and manifest our visions, not to the power of 10 or even more, but to infinity.
One more of our committed members didn't join us with a money or an earning problem. She had a spiritual problem which she could not resolve on her own and which had not been resolved through other 12-Step programs (or many years of therapy). She did have major unsecured debts years ago and had committed to a new solvency date in March 2020, taking the 12 Steps through the BDA Solvency Immersion Conference in the first six months of 2021. Her problem, as she might have described it at the beginning of the process, was that she had come from a wealthy family, based on the business successes of her father, and had never had the need or the opportunity to create her own major business successes. (Some minor ones, sure.) She had replaced her father, at work, when he died 10 years ago, and had managed her family's business activities, assets, income, and earnings ever since. Yet she never saw herself as a leader, or even as a relevant family member sometimes. She saw herself as an office manager. (No offense to office managers!) Her low self-esteem and almost non-existent self-worth would allow her nothing more. It didn't matter what she was paid; she could not see beyond her very limited view of herself. Her Step work, her engagement with her sponsor and with the workshop materials, and her new relationship with her Higher Power have given her a new way to see the world. She now leads her family's business as their CEO and is developing at least one and possibly as many as three of her own businesses in addition to what she's already doing. She feels confident, worthy, and empowered to succeed. She gives credit for this new awakening and attitude to her recovery in BDA, specifically to her work in this conference and to the conferences hosted by Hope for Debtors.
WANT MORE AND LONGER BDA MEMBER STORIES?
If you do not yet have the following pieces of conference-approved DA and BDA literature — DA’s 12, 12, and 12 book; DA’s A Currency of Hope; and ALL of the pamphlets if you're in the US and willing to receive an eBook on the Kindle app (sorry, that's US-only based on limitations on the various country-specific Amazon websites) — please visit https://www.bdaworkshops.org/free-literature to submit a literature request form.
Once you have DA’s Currency of Hope, you will find many stories of DA recovery practiced by debtor business owners and self-employed debtors to solve the riddle of spiritually-based, recovery-oriented, principle- and values-driven income, earning, business operations, and employment. Although BDA is not always mentioned, all of the stories below include references to business ownership and / or self-employment by our fellow recovering debtors (that's 16 out of the 38 stories offered, and we may have missed some):
From Desperation to Daily Gratitude
An Underearner Discovers Real Recovery
A Twelve-Step Journey out of Debt
Less Is More
Thank God for a Long, Slow Recovery
God Is My Business Partner
A Focus on the Basics
Watching a Fellowship Grow in the UK
An Entrepreneur Finds DA and BDA Recovery
Surrender and Service
From Chaos to Clarity in Business
Debt Was Hazardous to My Health
The Escape Artist
From Fruitless to Fulfilled in DA and BDA
Loving as Money; Money as Love
Recovery in New Hampshire