DR – Jan 18, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings
January 18, 2017

Daily Reflection

WOULD A DRINK HELP?

By going back in our own drinking histories, we could show that years before we realized it we were out of control, that our drinking even then was no mere habit, that it was indeed the beginning of a fatal progression.
— TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 23

When I was still drinking, I couldn’t respond to any of life’s situations the way other, more healthy, people could. The smallest incident triggered a state of mind that believed I had to have a drink to numb my feelings. But the numbing did not improve the situation, so I sought further escape in the bottle. Today I must be aware of my alcoholism. I cannot afford to believe that I have gained control of my drinking — or again I will think I have gained control of my life. Such a feeling of control is fatal to my recovery.

From the book Daily Reflections
Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.

Big Book Quote

“We have seen the truth demonstrated again and again: ‘Once an alcoholic, always an alcoholic.’ Commencing to drink after a period of sobriety, we are in a short time as bad as ever.” 
~~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, More About Alcoholism, pg. 33

Keep It Simple

The reality is that changes are coming….they must come. You must share in bring them.
–John Hersey

Change. It’s scary. It’s hard. It’s needed. Sometimes it feels bad. But one thing is for sure: it keeps on happening. Just when our life seems settled, it changes. We can’t stop life. We can’t stay this age forever. The world changes. Life moves on. There are always new things to do and learn. Changes means we’re always beginners in some ways. We need to ask for wisdom and courage. We get it by listening, by praying, by meditating. When we ask, our Higher Power will teach us to be part of good changes.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, help me believe that Your plans call for good changes.

Action for the Day:
Today I’ll think about the changes in my life. I’ve lived through a lot. I’ll be okay when more changes come, with God’s help. I can keep on growing.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You may rush ahead and take unnecessary risks today, but impulsive actions only remind you that you do better when you consider your words and actions first. Warrior Mars rams into a clunky alignment with bombastic Jupiter, possibly inciting an argument or leading you in the wrong direction. It might not be easy to manage your intensity now, yet limiting the scope of your endeavors and tempering your language allow you to apply your passions more productively. George Lucas teaches, “Always remember, your focus determines your reality.”

DR – Jan 17, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings
January 17, 2017

Daily Reflection

HAPPINESS COMES QUIETLY

“The trouble with us alcoholics was this: We demanded that the world give us happiness and peace of mind in just the particular order we wanted to get it-by the alcohol route. And we weren’t successful. But when we take time to find out some of the spiritual laws, and familiarize ourselves with them, and put them into practice, then we do get happiness and peace of mind. . . . There seem to be some rules that we have to follow, but happiness and peace of mind are always here, open and free to anyone.”
— DR. BOB AND THE GOOD OLDTIMERS, p. 308

The simplicity of the A.A. program teaches me that happiness isn’t something I can “demand.” It comes upon me quietly, while I serve others. In offering my hand to the newcomer or to someone who has relapsed, I find that my own sobriety has been recharged with indescribable gratitude and happiness.

From the book Daily Reflections
Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.

Big Book Quote

“It is plain that a life which includes deep resentment leads only to futility and unhappiness. To the precise extent that we permit these, do we squander the hours that might have been worth while.” ~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, How It Works, pg. 66

Keep It Simple

When all else fails, read the instructions. ~Agnes Allen

The instructions for recovery are in our Twelve Step program. Yet, there are times when we feel our program isn’t working. at these times, we need to read the instructions. Have you followed the “instructions,” the wise words are found in The Big Book, The Twelve and Twelve, and other recovery literature? When we do, we recover. It’s hard at times, and easy at others. Our problems go deeper than just staying sober. No matter what our problems, our program can help us start fixing them, if we follow the instructions. Don’t use alcohol or other drugs. Go to meeting. Talk often with sponsors and program friends. Work the Steps. Think. Easy Does It. First Things First. Listen. Let Go and Let God. One Day at a Time.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, tell me which instructions to read today. If I’m headed for trouble, help me out.

Today’s Action:
I’ll read the instructions today.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You’re not very interested in going out to change the world today. In fact, if you had your druthers, you would have the world come to you. However, you might end up feeling isolated if you sink deeper into your emotional safety zone. But don’t waste this opportunity to reflect on your personal life or even look back over larger reaches of family history. What you discover while exploring these inner worlds is magically projected onto the outer realms. Lao Tzu wrote, “Knowing others is wisdom; knowing yourself is enlightenment.”

More About Alcoholism (AA)

Chapter 3
More About Alcoholism

MOST OF US have been unwilling to admit we were real alcoholics. No person likes to think he is bodily and mentally different from his fellows. Therefore, it is not surprising that our drinking careers have been characterized by countless vain attempts to prove we could drink like other people. The idea that somehow, someday he will control and enjoy his drinking is the great obsession of every abnormal drinker. The persistence of this illusion is astonishing. Many pursue it into the gates of insanity or death.

We learned that we had to fully concede to our innermost selves that we were alcoholics. This is the first step in recovery. The delusion that we are like other people, or presently may be, has to be smashed.

We alcoholics are men and women who have lost the ability to control our drinking. We know that no real alcoholic ever recovers control. All of us felt at times that we were regaining control, but such intervals–usually brief–were inevitably followed by still less control, which led in time to pitiful and incomprehensible demoralization. We are convinced to a man that alcoholics of our type are in the grip of a progressive illness. Over any considerable period we get worse, never better.

We are like men who have lost their legs; they never grow new ones. Neither does there appear to be any kind of treatment which will make alcoholics of our kind like other men. We have tried every imaginable remedy. In some instances there has been brief recovery, followed always by a still worse relapse. Physicians who are familiar with alcoholism agree there is no such thing a making a normal drinker out of an alcoholic. Science may one day accomplish this, but it hasn’t done so yet.

Despite all we can say, many who are real alcoholics are not going to believe they are in that class. By every form of self-deception and experimentation, they will try to prove themselves exceptions to the rule, therefore nonalcoholic. If anyone who is showing inability to control his drinking can do the right-about-face and drink like a gentleman, our hats are off to him. Heaven knows, we have tried hard enough and long enough to drink like other people!

Here are some of the methods we have tried: drinking beer only, limiting the number of drinks, never drinking alone, never drinking in the morning, drinking only at home, never having it in the house, never drinking during business hours, drinking only at parties, switching from scotch to brandy, drinking only natural wines, agreeing to resign if ever drunk on the job, taking a trip, not taking a trip, swearing off forever (with and without a solemn oath), taking more physical exercise, reading inspirational books, going to health farms and sanitariums, accepting voluntary commitment to asylums–we could increase the list ad infinitum.

We do not like to pronounce any individual as alcoholic, but you can quickly diagnose yourself. Step over to the nearest barroom and try some controlled drinking. Try to drink and stop abruptly. Try it more than once. It will not take long for you to decide, if you are honest with yourself about it. It may be worth a bad case of jitters if you get a full knowledge of your condition.

Though there is no way of proving it, we believe that early in our drinking careers most of us could have stopped drinking. But the difficulty is that few alcoholics have enough desire to stop while there is yet time. We have heard of a few instances where people, who showed definite signs of alcoholism, were able to stop for a long period because of an overpowering desire to do so.

adobe_pdf_file_icon_32x32  AA – Chapter 3 – More About Alcoholism (aa_more_about_alcoholism.pdf)

The 12 Traditions of AA

THE TWELVE TRADITIONS OF ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS
(SHORT FORM)

1. Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon
A.A. unity.

2. For our group purpose there is but one ultimate authority—a loving God as
He may express Himself in our group conscience. Our leaders are but
trusted servants; they do not govern.

3. The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking.

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

5. Each group has but one primary purpose—to carry its message to the
alcoholic who still suffers.

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

7. Every A.A. group ought to be fully self-supporting, declining outside
contributions.

8. Alcoholics Anonymous should remain forever nonprofessional, but our
service centers may employ special workers.

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

10. Alcoholics Anonymous has no opinion on outside issues; hence the A.A.
name ought never be drawn into public controversy.

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

12. Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our Traditions, ever reminding us
to place principles before personalities.

Copyright © 1952, 1953, 1981 by A.A. Grapevine, Inc. and Alcoholics Anonymous Publishing
(now known as Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.)
All rights reserved.
Rev. 10/14 SM F-122

adobe_pdf_file_icon_32x32  The Twelve Traditions of AA in PDF format (aa_12_traditions.pdf)

AA Promises

The AA Promises

1. If we are painstaking about this phase of our development, we will be amazed
before we are half way through.

2. We are going to know a new freedom and a new happiness.

3. We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it.

4. We will comprehend the word serenity and we will know peace.

5. No matter how far down the scale we have gone, we will see how our experience
can benefit others.

6. That feeling of uselessness and self-pity will disappear.

7. We will lose interest in selfish things and gain interest in our fellows.

8. Self-seeking will slip away.

9. Our whole attitude and outlook upon life will change.

10. Fear of people and of economic insecurity will leave us.

11. We will intuitively know how to handle situations which used to baffle us.

12. We will suddenly realize that God is doing for us what we could not do for
ourselves

Are these extravagant promises? We think not. They are being fulfilled among us –
sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly. They will always materialize if we work for them.

Alcoholics Anonymous p83-84
Reprinted from the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous with permission of A.A. World
Services, Inc.

adobe_pdf_file_icon_32x32AA Promises in PDF format (aa_promises.pdf)

The Twelve Steps of AA

THE TWELVE STEPS OF ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS

1. We admitted we were powerless over alcohol—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 God as we understood Him.

4. Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.

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

6. Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.

7. Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.

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

9. Made direct amends to such people 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 prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His 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 alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.

Copyright© 1952, 1953, 1981 by Alcoholics Anonymous Publishing
(now known as Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.)
All rights reserved.
Rev. 8/16 SM F-121

adobe_pdf_file_icon_32x32 The Twelve Steps of AA in PDF format (aa_12_steps.pdf)

AA Preamble – Who Are We?

A.A. PREAMBLE©

Alcoholics Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from alcoholism.

The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking. There are no dues or fees for A.A. membership; we are self-supporting through our own contributions. A.A. is not allied with any sect, denomination, politics, organization or institution; does not wish to engage in any controversy, neither endorses nor opposes any causes. Our primary purpose is to stay sober and help other alcoholics to achieve sobriety.

Copyright © The AA Grapevine, Inc.
Reprinted with permission

adobe_pdf_file_icon_32x32  AA Preamble in PDF format (aa_preamble.pdf)