DR – September 15, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for September 15, 2017:

Daily Reflection

A NEW LIFE

Yes, there is a substitute and it is vastly more than that. It is a fellowship in Alcoholics Anonymous. . . . Life will mean something at last.

— ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 152

Life is better without alcohol. A.A. and the presence of a Higher Power keeps me sober, but the grace of God does even better; it brings service into my life. Contact with the A.A. program teaches me a new and greater understanding of what Alcoholics Anonymous is and what it does, but most importantly, it helps to show me who I am: an alcoholic who needs the constant experience of the Alcoholics Anonymous program so that I may live a life given to me by my Higher Power.

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

Big Book Quote

As we go through the day we pause, when agitated or doubtful, and ask for the right thought or action.

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, pg. 87~

Keep It Simple

Often the test of courage is not to die but to live.—Vittorio Alfiert

What brave people we are! We have chosen life. Okay, maybe we had a little push, maybe a big push from our family, police, or the pain of our disease. But still, we’ve chosen recovery. We choose daily to let our Higher Power run our lives. What trust! What faith! What courage! We work hard at recovery. We do our meditate. We look for ways to serve others. Each one of us is building a miracle. We can be proud of this.

Prayer for the Day:
I pray that I’ll have the courage to love myself. High Power, teach me to pat myself on the back when I deserve it.

Action for the Day:
I will list three ways I am brave in recovery and share them with my group.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

Almost everyone may leave you alone today, and you really don’t mind the distance at all. However, you begin to long for uplifting interpersonal connections as the day wears on. Thankfully, you don’t need to try very hard in your search for companionship now. Once you make your availability known, potential partners-in-crime appear everywhere you look. Nevertheless, it’s still up to you to decide which one is the most compatible with your goals. Remember, it’s the friends you meet along the way that help you appreciate the journey.

DR – September 13, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for September 13, 2017:

Daily Reflection

REPAIRING THE DAMAGE

Good judgment, a careful sense of timing, courage and prudence – these are the qualities we shall need when we take Step Nine.

— TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 83

To make amends can be viewed two ways: first, that of repairing damage, for if I have damaged my neighbor’s fence, I “make a mend,” and that is a direct amend; the second way is by modifying my behavior, for if my actions have harmed someone, I make a daily effort to cause no further harm. I “mend my ways,” and that is an indirect amend. Which is the best approach? The only right approach, provided that I am causing no further harm in so doing, is to do both. If harm is done, then I simply “mend my ways.” To take action in this manner assures me of making honest amends.

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

Big Book Quote

We are careful never to show intolerance or hatred of drinking as an institution. Experience shows that such an attitude is not helpful to anyone. Every new alcoholic looks for this spirit among us and is immensely relieved when he finds we are not witch-burners. A spirit of intolerance might repel alcoholics whose lives could
have been saved, had it not been for such stupidity.

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Working With Others, pg. 103~

Keep It Simple

People seldom improve when they have no model but themselves to copy.—Oliver Goldsmith

If we had to get well by ourselves, we’d be in trouble. We’ve already tried this route. We need to learn a new way to live, not the old way we already know. That’s why we have sponsors in Twelve Step programs.

Sponsors are one of the best things about our recovery. We pick people who are happy and doing well in recovery. Then we copy them. We copy them because sponsors are special people who have what we want. They have sobriety. They have happiness. They have common sense. They have peace and serenity. And they will help us get those things too. We learn a new way to live from them.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, help me pick good models. Help me copy what works for them.

Action for the Day:
If I don’t have a sponsor now, I’ll work today on getting one.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You might have more on your plate today than you can easily handle. Unfortunately, your current overload is, at least, partly due to jobs you didn’t finish previously. There’s no room for you to complain or blame others; your only option is to lean into your work and give it your best effort. Author Manoj Arora wrote, “Be like a duck, paddling and working very hard inside the water, but what everyone sees is a smiling and calm face.”s

DR – September 11, 2011

Daily Recovery Readings for September 10, 2017:

Daily Reflection

MAKING AMENDS

Above all, we should try to be absolutely sure that we are not delaying because we are afraid.

— TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 87

To have courage, to be unafraid, are gifts of my recovery. They empower me to ask for help and to go forth in making my amends with a sense of dignity and humility. Making amends may require a certain amount of honesty that I feel I lack, yet with the help of God and the wisdom of others, I can reach within and find the strength to act. My amends may be accepted, or they may not, but after they are completed I can walk with a sense of freedom and know that, for today, I am responsible.

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

Big Book Quote

Imagine life without faith! Were nothing left but pure reason, it wouldnt be life.

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, We Agnostics, pg. 54~

Keep It Simple

This above all: To thine own self be true. —William Shakespeare

What does this saying mean: “To thine own self be true”? Hadn’t we thought only of ourselves before recovery? The answer is no. That wasn’t the real us. Each of us lost touch with our real self because of our addiction. We lost our goals, our feelings, our values. We chased the high. In this way, we lost our spirit. We became addicts.
With sobriety, we find ourselves again—and it feels great! We stop playing a role and become ourselves—and it’s wonderful. We follow our dreams and beliefs, not some addictive wild goose chase. We are again free to be ourselves. Thank you. Higher Power.

Prayer for the Day:
Today, I pray to be myself, to know all of me. I can trust myself because my spirit is good.

Action for the Day:
Today, I’ll pray: “thine own self be true.”

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You may reach your emotional limit today, especially if you are spending a lot of time with your friends. You are quite sensitive to contradictory information yet you’re committed to sorting out useful facts from trivial data. Although you still want the benefit of good advice from those you trust, you also need to integrate current experiences before you open yourself up to feedback that makes you question recent choices. Honor your internal clock and only move forward at a speed that feels right to you.

DR – August 16, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for August 16, 2017:

Daily Reflection

“I HAD DROPPED OUT”

We might next ask ourselves what we mean when we say that we have “harmed” other people. What kinds of “harm” do people do one another, anyway? To define the word “harm” in a practical way, we might call it the result of instincts in collision, which cause physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual damage to people.

— TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 80

I had been to Eighth Step meetings, always thinking, “I really haven’t harmed many people, mostly myself.” But the time came when I wrote my list out and it was not as short as I thought it would be. I either liked you, disliked you, or needed something from you—it was that simple. People hadn’t done what I wanted them to do and intimate relationships were out of hand because of my partners’ unreasonable demands. Were these “sins of omission”? Because of my drinking, I had “dropped out”—never sending cards, returning calls, being there for other people, or taking part in their lives. What a grace it has been to look at these relationships, to make my inventories in quiet, alone with the God of my understanding, and to go forth daily, with a willingness to be honest and forthright in my relationships.

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

Big Book Quote

“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 as making a normal drinker out of an alcoholic. Science may one day accomplish this, but it hasn’t done so yet.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, More About Alcoholism, pg. 30~

Keep It Simple

The strongest rebellion may be expressed in quiet, undramatic behavior.-–Benjamin Spock

In recovery, we each rebel against our disease. Each day we fight for the freedom to stay close to our Higher Power, friends and family.

It’s mainly a quiet battle. It’s fought daily. We fight and win by acting in a spiritual way. We fight and win every time we help a friend, go to meetings, or read about how to improve our lives

We move slowly but always forward. Rushing will only tire us out. Our battle will go on for life.

We are quiet fighters, but we’re strong, for we do not fight alone. And we know what waits for us if we lose.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, help me stay free. When I want to give up, help me realize this is normal. Help me to keep fighting at these times.

Action for the Day:
Today, I’ll be a rebel. I will go to an extra meeting, or I’ll talk with my sponsor. I’ll find a way to help someone without the person knowing.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You’re more inclined to push past your fears today, and lay your feelings on the line. Nevertheless, you’re aware that people won’t necessarily agree with your heartfelt opinions. Honestly, you don’t mind a little dissension now, even if it contributes to your uncertainty. Thankfully, your confidence grows while optimistic Jupiter is in the picture, and you’re hopeful that everything will work out in your favor. Meanwhile, the reflective Moon is camped out in your 12th House of Spiritual Mystery, calling you to inquire within. Author John Gray wrote, “When you feel it, you can heal it.”

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DR – August 8, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for August 8, 2017:

Daily Reflection

“MADE A LIST . . .”

Made a list of all persons we had harmed, . . .

— TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 77

When I approached the Eighth Step, I wondered how I could list all the things that I have done to other people since there were so many people, and some of them weren’t alive anymore. Some of the hurts I inflicted weren’t bad, but they really bothered me. The main thing to see in this Step was to become willing to do whatever I had to do to make these amends to the best of my ability at that particular time. Where there is a will, there’s a way, so if I want to feel better, I need to unload the guilt feelings I have. A peaceful mind has no room for feelings of guilt. With the help of my Higher Power, if I am honest with myself, I can cleanse my mind of these feelings.

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

Big Book Quote

“We realized that the people who wronged us were perhaps spiritually sick. Though we did not like their symptoms and the way these disturbed us, they, like ourselves, were sick too. We asked God to help us show them the same tolerance, pity, and patience that we would cheerfully grant a sick friend. When a person offended we said to ourselves, ‘This is a sick man. How can I be helpful to him? God save me from being angry. Thy will be done.'”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, How It Works, pg. 66~

Keep It Simple

Adventure is not outside a man; it is within.—David Grayson

Sobriety. It’s an exciting adventure. It’s a spiritual adventure. We look inward. We find where our Higher Power lives: within us. We then reach outward. We share our joy with others. Not with words and preaching, but by trying to help others. Sobriety is faith turned into action.

Sobriety. It’s an adventure in coming to know one’s self. At times, we’ll have to face our fears. But we’ll also find just how much love we have for life.

Sobriety. It’s as if we’re on a trip. Our Higher Power holds the map. Our job is to listen. And we go in the direction we’re told.

Prayer for the Day:
I pray to be an adventurer. Higher Power, I pray to follow Your direction.

Action for the Day:
I’ll ask some friends to tell me about an adventure their Higher Power has taken them on.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

Although you might have a day packed with work-related activities, it’s imperative to find time to take care of yourself. The Moon’s current visit to your 8th House of Regeneration inspires you to revitalize your body, reinvigorate your routines and reinvent your life. However, none of these things will magically happen on their own. You need to step in with your intentions at the forefront of your activities. And, more than ever, you must find joy in the journey and passion in your purpose.

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DR – August 5, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for August 5, 2017:

Daily Reflection

LISTENING DEEPLY

How persistently we claim the right to decide all by ourselves just what we shall think and just how we shall act. — TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 37

If I accept and act upon the advice of those who have made the program work for themselves, I have a chance to outgrow the limits of the past. Some problems will shrink to nothingness, while others may require patient, well-thought-out action. Listening deeply when others share can develop intuition in handling problems which arise unexpectedly. It is usually best for me to avoid impetuous action. Attending a meeting or calling a fellow A.A. member will usually reduce tension enough to bring relief to a desperate sufferer like me. Sharing problems at meetings with other alcoholics to whom I relate, or privately with my sponsor, can change aspects of the positions in which I find myself. Character defects are identified and I begin to see how they work against me. When I put my faith in the spiritual power of the program, when I trust others to teach me what I need to do to have a better life, I find that I can trust myself to do what is necessary.

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

Big Book Quote

“All these, and many others, have one symptom in common: they cannot start drinking without developing the phenomenon of craving. This phenomenon, as we have suggested, may be the manifestation of an allergy which differentiates these people, and sets them apart as a distinct entity. It has never been, by any treatment with which we are familiar, permanently eradicated. The only relief we have to suggest is entire abstinence.

This immediately precipitates us into a seething caldron of debate. Much has been written pro and con, but among physicians, the general opinion seems to be that most chronic alcoholics are doomed.”

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, The Doctor’s Opinion, pg. xxx~

Keep It Simple

You’re only human, you’ve suppose to make mistakes.—Billy Joel

Listen to the kind voice inside. Listen to the voice that tells you you’re good enough. Listen to the voice that tells you it’s okay to make mistakes—you’ll learn from them. Listen to the voice that tells you to go to your meeting even though it’s cold outside and you’re tired. Listen and let this voice become more and more clear. Listen, and welcome it in your heart. Talk with the voice.

Ask it questions and seek it out when you need a friend. This voice is your Higher Power. Listen as your Higher Power speaks to you. Listen as your Higher Power tells you what a great person you are.

Prayer for the Day:
I pray to the gentle, loving voice that lives in me. Higher Power, You’ve always been kind to me. You’ve always loved me. Help me to remember You’re always there—inside me.

Action for the Day:
I will take time from my busy day to listen and talk with the loving voice that lives inside me.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

It’s never any fun to feel as if you’re being pushed into a corner, but today you’re unwilling to let things go that far. You can’t help but see right through someone’s charm if they are operating with self-serving motives. Fortunately, you can nip the bud of control before it even flowers. A proactive strategy is better than waiting until a crisis develops. Just make sure that you’re not a victim of your own imagination now. Don’t end up fighting windmills like Don Quixote. Plato advised, “Take charge of your thoughts. You can do what you will with them.”

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DR – August 4, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for August 4, 2017:

Daily Reflection

SEEDS OF FAITH

Faith, to be sure, is necessary, but faith alone can avail nothing. We can have faith, yet keep God out of our lives. ~TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 34

As a child I constantly questioned the existence of God. To a “scientific thinker” like me, no answer could withstand a thorough dissection, until a very patient woman finally said to me, “You must have faith.” With that simple statement, the seeds of my recovery were sown!

Today, as I practice my recovery — cutting back the weeds of alcoholism — slowly I am letting those early seeds of faith to grow and bloom. Each day of recovery, of ardent gardening, brings the Higher Power of my understanding more fully into my life. My God has always been with me through faith, but it is my responsibility to have the willingness to accept His presence.

I ask God to grant me the willingness to do His will.

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

Big Book Quote

“If we skip this vital step (5th Step), we may not overcome drinking. Time after time newcomers have tried to keep to themselves certain facts about their lives. Trying to avoid this humbling experience, they have turned to easier methods. Almost invariably they got drunk. Having persevered with the rest of the program, they wondered why they fell. We think the reason is that they never completed their housecleaning. They took inventory all right, but hung on to some of the worst items in stock. They only thought they had lost their egoism and fear; they only thought they had humbled themselves. But they had not learned enough of humility, fearlessness and honesty, in the sense we find it necessary, until they told someone else all their life story.”
~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, pg. 72~

Keep It Simple

Let him that would move the world, first move himself.—Socrates

Before recovery, most of us were big talkers. The Twelve Steps are for doers, not talkers. In the Steps we find action words: admitted, humbly asked, made direct amends, continued to take personal inventory. All these words speak of action, of doing. Recovery is about action. It’s for doers. An action may be very simple. Such as going to a meeting early to set up chairs. Or it could be helping a neighbor. The program teaches that spirituality active, we grow and change.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, give me movement. Give me spiritual movement. Help me be a doer, not just a talker. Teach me to work my program.

Today’s Action:
Today, I’ll remember the words actions go together.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

Oftentimes, you know what you want but are hesitant to reveal your preferences for fear of rejection. Unfortunately, a coworker or partner may step in today, filling the gap by telling you what he or she expects. Although you might be shocked by someone’s directness now, you could also feel angry because their approach leaves you with little choice but agreement. Instead of seething quietly while going along with the plan, stop this power play before things get out of control. Stand up for your rights; saying yes to happiness means learning to say no to people who stress you out.