12-step programs are used throughout most of the world as the prime (in some cases, the only) offer for substance abusers to kick their habit. bitter_engineer listed the actual steps above, so I'm not going to reiterate what has already been said.
The original 12-step program was the one used by Alcoholics Anonymous. The whole program was thoroughly founded in Christianity, and while AA often tout "spirituality, not religion" in their barrage of slogans, the original program's wording was interesting in this regard. Step 2 mentions "a Power larger than ourselves", in step 3, this "Power" has become "God, as we understand Him", and throughout the rest of the program it's just plain old God. Their so-called "Big Book" (simply entitled "Alcoholics Anonymous", author unknown, but probably primarily Bill Wilson) contains a chapter, "We Agnostics", which is practically a how-to guide to stop being an agnostic or atheist, complete with a happy anecdote of an alcoholic atheist who became a sober Christian.
They 12 steps of the program totally and utterly disempower the individual. In the official AA version of the first step, it isn't just "admit that you have a problem", it is "admit that you are powerless before alcohol, and cannot control your own life". Bullshit. Nobody is powerless before alcohol. The alcohol abuser may be powerless when alcohol is inside his body, but it is his own decision whether he wants to put it in there or not. He (or she; alcohol abusers come in all sizes and shapes) may feel a powerful urge to drink, but an urge cannot force his arm to reach out for the bottle and take a swig; it can only suggest to him to do so. He can refuse to do so at any time -- it might be hard, and he certainly may need help, but a divine Power is not the only option. Hypnosis, self-hypnosis, psychological training, useful dialogue with other recovered and recovering abusers (no, repeating slogans and taking turns holding monologues does not count as dialogue) are all alternatives.
Other of the steps may be completely out of touch with the individual abuser's situation. If a rape victim turned to drug abuse and hurt her/his rapist while on a drug-induced frenzy later, would she be required to go make amends with the rapist? Should someone who's been a doormat and a victim his whole life be required to submit and turn over control of his fate to some Power? Why must atheists pray? And if alcoholism is indeed a physical disease (which AA often claims it is), why is a "moral inventory" in order? You should think a medical inventory would be far more interesting -- unless, of course, you believe that the disease of alcoholism was inflicted on you by a vengeful God because you sinned.
All in all, the 12 steps may have helped Bill W and Dr. Bob (and, to be fair, many, many others), they are not right for all situations, all times and all personalities. They seem to be excellent to get a drinking, religious egomaniac down to Earth and off the bottle, but they would only make aforementioned doormat type's situation worse. Some long-time AA'ers resemble brainwashing victims in their endless parade of pre-cooked slogans and total devotion to the Program. In a world where 12-step programs are applied to everything from substance abuse over compulsive gambling to high blood pressure, it is perhaps useful to remember that they were devised in the beginning of the 20th century by Christian alcoholics; they are guidelines and ideas, not facts or laws of nature.
Alternatives to 12-step programs include SMART Recovery, Rational Recovery, and many others.