Sample Meeting Script

Suggestions for starting a new meeting

This script is a suggested newcomer format based on a daily topic and open sharing. Per our fourth tradition, each group is autonomous except in matters affecting ITAA as a whole, and so may adopt unique and varied meeting scripts and formats.

We suggest meeting leaders make sure they have the host code for their meeting and that they have read ITAA’s security guidelines for meetings.

ITAA Sample Meeting Script

Welcome to our meeting of Internet and Technology Addicts Anonymous.

[If the meeting is shorter or longer than 60 minutes, you may announce the meeting length now: ‘This meeting is xx minutes long’]

We start the meeting by going around the room and introducing ourselves by first name only, and optionally, where we are calling from. We welcome any newcomers who are with us today, and if you’d like, you may indicate whether this is one of your first meetings when introducing yourself. I will start: “My name is ______ , and I am an Internet and technology addict in ______.” [each member introduces themselves]

Welcome everyone. We encourage any newcomers who are with us to stick around after the meeting, as a number of us will be available to stay and help answer any questions you may have.

At the beginning of each meeting, we ask that members close other programs on their computer or phone, turn their phones on silent, and commit to listening to one another. Please also mute your microphone when not speaking. And if you feel comfortable, we invite you to turn your video on so we can get to know you better. You may also add your location to your Zoom username if you wish.

Anonymity is an important principle of the ITAA Program. Everything that is said here, in the group meeting and member-to-member must be held in confidence. Only in this way can we feel free to say what is in our minds and hearts, for this is how we help one another in ITAA.

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We start the meeting with the Serenity Prayer:

Higher Power, Grant me The Serenity

to Accept the things I cannot Change,

the Courage to Change the things I Can,

and the Wisdom to Know the Difference.

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[Chair may ask for a volunteer to read the Mission Statement].

Mission Statement

Internet and Technology Addicts Anonymous is a fellowship of people who support each other in recovering from compulsive internet and technology use. I.T.A.A. is not affiliated with any political agenda, religion, or outside interests. Our single purpose is to abstain from compulsive internet and technology use and to help others find freedom from this addiction. We have no membership requirements beyond the desire to stop compulsive internet and technology use.

Our groups share our collective experience and the principles that helped us. Each of us is free to try out or disregard the suggestions of the program and other members.

[Chair may ask for a volunteer to read the Twelve Steps of ITAA].

The Twelve Steps of ITAA

1. We admitted we were powerless over internet and technology—that our lives had become unmanageable.

2. Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.

3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of a Higher Power of our own understanding

4. Made a searching and fearless inventory of ourselves.

5. Admitted to our Higher Power, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.

6. Were entirely ready to have our Higher Power remove all these defects of character.

7. Humbly asked our Higher Power to remove our shortcomings.

8. Made a list of all those we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.

9. Made direct amends to those we had harmed wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.

10. Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.

11. Sought through practices such as prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with a Power greater than ourselves, praying only for knowledge of our Higher Power’s will for us and the power to carry that out.

12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these Steps, we tried to carry this message to internet and technology addicts, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.

The Tradition of the Month:

Tradition 1: Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends on ITAA unity.

Tradition 2: For our group purpose there is but one ultimate authority—a loving Higher Power as they may express themselves in our group conscience. Our leaders are but trusted servants; they do not govern.

Tradition 3: The only requirement for ITAA membership is a desire to stop using internet and technology compulsively.

Tradition 4: Each group should be autonomous except in matters affecting other groups or ITAA as a whole.

Tradition 5: Each group has but one primary purpose—to carry its message to the compulsive internet and technology user who still suffers.

Tradition 6: An ITAA group ought never endorse, finance, or lend the ITAA name to any related facility or outside enterprise, lest problems of money, property, and prestige divert us from our primary purpose.

Tradition 7: Every ITAA group ought to be fully self-supporting, declining outside contributions.

Tradition 8: ITAA should remain forever nonprofessional, but our service centers may employ special workers.

Tradition 9: ITAA as such, ought never be organized, but we may create service boards or committees directly responsible to those they serve.

Tradition 10: ITAA has no opinion on outside issues, hence the ITAA name ought never be drawn into public controversy.

Tradition 11: Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio, films, television, and other public media of communication.

Tradition 12: Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all these traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before personalities.

[Note: Our 12 Steps and 12 Traditions have been adapted with the permission of Alcoholics Anonymous. A full disclaimer can be found at the bottom of this meeting script]

[OPTIONAL READING: We will now select a short reading from our recovery library for reflection, as a prompt for sharing.]

Our Topic: (topic of your choosing, a list can be found at the bottom of these notes)

Discussion is not limited to the topic(s) of the day. If you are new, you can introduce yourself and, if you feel comfortable, share what brought you to ITAA. There will be time after the meeting to ask questions.

I will now read the Safety Statement:

We ask that members avoid cross talk, which is any commenting, interrupting, judging, advice giving, feedback, or dialogue in response to another member’s share. In this meeting, we seek to provide a safe, non-judgmental environment for people to find strength, healing and recovery. Comments or behavior of an aggressive or sexual nature directed towards other members are inappropriate, as is any discrimination in relation to sex, gender identity, race, creed, religion or sexual orientation. We also request that members avoid describing specific digital content in detail such as the names of specific websites or apps, turn off their camera if moving around, eating, smoking, etc., and to be mindful of sending messages in the chat to other members during the sharing part of the meeting, as this can distract others from being able to listen.

At any point during the meeting, anyone may send me a private message with the phrase “Safety statement” and I will re-read the Safety statement. You may also reach out to me or another trusted member if you feel uncomfortable for any reason.

[For helpful information on how to respond to inappropriate behavior, please reference Safety in ITAA]

[Depending on the size of the meeting, the chair can set a time limit for shares and request a volunteer timekeeper]

And with that, the floor is open for shares. If you’d like to share, please unmute and introduce yourself.

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[Optional prompts for after the first round of shares. Note: chair may wish to wait for ~30 seconds before saying: “Would anybody who hasn’t shared yet like to share?” and then pause for another ~30 seconds before moving on.

  • Opening the floor for 2nd shares.
  • Reading from literature.
  • Having 5 or 10 minutes of group meditation.
  • A brief round of introductions/check-ins: where we’re calling from, how we’re feeling today, an achievement, or a tool we’re using.]

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Thank you all for being here and helping me stay off addictive internet and technology use one more day! [You may also thank anyone who did service during the meeting, such as the timekeeper]

In closing, I would like to say that the opinions expressed here were strictly those of the person who gave them. Take what you liked and leave the rest. 

The things you heard were spoken in confidence and should be treated as confidential.  Keep them within the walls of this room and the confines of your mind.

Talk to each other, reason things out with someone else, but let there be no gossip or criticism of one another. Instead let the understanding, love and peace of the program grow in you one day at a time.

If you are new, didn’t have a chance to share, or are struggling, please feel free to stay as a number of us are available to talk or answer any questions after the meeting ends.

Our 7th Tradition states that each I.T.A.A. group ought to be fully self-supporting, declining outside contributions. We have no dues or fees, though we do have expenses. If you would like to make a donation, you can find our donate button on our website at internetaddictsanonymous.org/donate. If you can’t donate, please keep coming back! You are more important to us than your money!

ITAA holds fellowship-wide business meetings on the first and third weekends of each month. All are encouraged to participate. The full schedule and the upcoming agenda are on the website: https://internetaddictsanonymous.org/business-meetings/ [Chair may post the link in the chat]

Here are a few announcements:

[ITAA Announcements Bulletin Board]

Are there any other announcements for the good of ITAA?

Does anyone have recovery time that you’d like to mention and celebrate with the group today?

Carrying the message to the still-suffering addict is an essential part of our program of recovery. Sponsorship is an informal, voluntary relationship in which a more experienced member helps guide a newcomer through The Twelve Steps, which serve as the foundation of our long-term recovery. Members can also offer temporary sponsorship. A great way to connect with a potential sponsor is through outreach calls. We encourage you to reach out to members whose shares you resonated with today. There will be an opportunity after the meeting to exchange phone numbers.

Let’s have a moment of silence for the addicted internet and technology user who is still suffering……

(Read one of the following prayers/affirmations of your choosing)

  • May I be gentle with myself today. May I be open to help from higher power and the fellowship, which can lead me to recovery.

     

  • Just for today, I accept life on life’s terms. Just for today, I am grateful for all of the blessings in my life.

     

  • Just for today, I will be present with myself. Just for today, I will put myself before my internet and technology use.

     

  • Higher Power, grant us the humility to realize our ignorance, admit our mistakes and recognize our need. Help us to praise rather than criticize, to sympathize rather than to discourage, to build rather than to destroy.

     

  • Higher Power, grant us the serenity to accept the things we cannot change, the courage to change the things we can, and the wisdom to know the difference.

     

  • Higher Power, I offer myself to Thee, to build with me and do with me as Thou wilt. Release me from the bondage of self, that I may better do Thy will. Take away my difficulties, that victory over them may bear witness to those I would help of Thy power, Thy love, and Thy way of life. May I do Thy will always.

     

  • I put my hand in yours, and together we can do what we could never do alone. No longer is there a sense of hopelessness, no longer must we each depend upon our own unsteady willpower. We are all together now, reaching out our hands for power and strength greater than ours, and as we join hands, we find love and understanding beyond our wildest dreams.

Let us hug each other. To hug one another, just say “hugs” out loud.

Who you see here, what is said here, when you leave here, let it stay here.

[Chair may now say something like: That’s the official end of the meeting but feel free to stick around for phone numbers, questions, and fellowship!

During the after-meeting, we encourage everyone to share the time fairly between all present, to not give feedback or advice without receiving permission first, and to refrain from actively promoting outside, non-ITAA resources.

The chair may:

  • Invite anybody who’s available to receive outreach calls to make themselves known. (Offer to read out phone numbers posted in the chat for the sake of anybody who has dialed in.)
  • Ask if someone could paste the outreach phone list link into the chat.
  • Encourage newcomers to ask questions. 
  • Allow anyone to share who didn’t share during the meeting.]

     

[If you are the host, be aware that when you leave the meeting, you might end the meeting for everyone. Make sure to pass the host to someone else if you need to leave but others want to stay on.]

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Topic possibilities:

  • One of the 12 steps or 12 traditions.
  • Introduce yourself and share how your recovery is going.
  • Sobriety
  • Control
  • Safe behavior
  • Shame.
  • Living life on life’s terms
  • What is available to you in recovery?
  • Discovering your unique recovery needs
  • Sleep
  • What does your addiction cover up?
  • Hitting rock bottom
  • Prioritizing recovery
  • Healthy forms of rest and pleasure
  • Freedom
  • Letting go of addiction related content and paraphernalia.
  • Reminders: Why is this fellowship important
  • Reminders: When did you realize you were powerless over your addiction?
  • Patterns of your addiction and recovery
  • Honesty
  • Open mindedness
  • Willingness.
  • Coping with difficulties
  • Staying present
  • The many forms of compulsion
  • Self compassion
  • Being open to change.
  • Stability
  • Letting our addiction take the wheel.
  • The “all or nothing” perspective
  • The addicted internet and tech user who is still suffering
  • Urges
  • Routines
  • “All is change, all yields its place, all comes and goes”
  • Tolerance
  • Tools of Recovery
  • Acceptance
  • Attitude of gratitude
  • Belief in a Higher Power
  • Complacency
  • Contempt prior to investigation
  • Dependence
  • Fear
  • Forgiveness
  • Freedom through sobriety
  • Happiness
  • Hope
  • Humility
  • Identification
  • Inadequacy
  • Inventory
  • Letting go of anger
  • Let’s be friendly with our friends
  • Living one day at a time
  • Making amends
  • Meditation
  • Open-mindedness
  • Participation and action
  • Patience and tolerance
  • Personal spiritual experience and spiritual awakening
  • Plan the action—not the result
  • Practice these principles in all our affairs
  • Principles before personalities
  • Projection—living in the wreckage of the future
  • Resentments
  • Responsibility declaration
  • Rigorous honesty
  • Serenity
  • Service
  • Sponsorship
  • Staying away from the first drink (or first video, article, etc.)
  • Surrender
  • Three Legacies—Recovery, Unity and Service
  • Twelfth Stepping
  • Twelve Concepts
  • Understanding Anonymity
  • Ways of carrying the I.T.A.A. message
  • What is sobriety
  • Willingness
  • Working with others
  • Small victories
  • Enablers
  • Healthy Boundaries
  • You always have the chance for a fresh start
  • The wisdom to know the difference
  • FOMO
  • Playing the tape to the end

The Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of Alcoholics Anonymous have been adapted with the permission of Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc. (“A.A.W.S.”). Permission to adapt the Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions does not mean that Alcoholics Anonymous is affiliated with this program. A.A. is a program of recovery from alcoholism only – use of A.A.’s Steps or an adapted version in connection with programs and activities which are patterned after A.A., but which address other problems, or use in any other non-A.A. context, does not imply otherwise.