A lot of adults in many cultures in this world have not gone for any extended period of time without alcohol since their teenage years and for many this is a happy crutch, able to control with ease and drink for pleasure. For others who are heavy drinkers or binge drinkers, unhealthy amounts are consumed in short periods of time but stopped to resume daily life and business until the next drinking session begins. There are alcoholics who have no off button when it comes to drinking and often end up in complete oblivion or black out on a regular basis, people that have lost control over their drinking. Unless, like me, who has complete abstinence from alcohol, chances are every person falls into one of those categories.
I try to remember to be mindful of what I put after the extremely powerful word duo of “I AM.” That becomes my life experience. I Am… what I decide I am. Actually the way it works is that: I Am what I believe I am, no more, no less. If I want to know what I truly believe about myself, the clues lie in my results, situations, and circumstances. That’s the good news and the wake-up-call news. Those clues tell me what I currently believe to be possible or not for me.
As you may know, the “idea” of New Thought Sobriety was inspired by the beautiful blending of two teachings: Metaphysical spirituality and twelve-step recovery. If you are an adherent of both, you know what a gift this fusion is. We spoke to someone recently who couldn’t quite see the compatibility between the two. His rationale went something like this: 1. Many people come to New Thought on the road to self-improvement. 2. Many people come to AA out of desperation or by court order. 3. These are two completely different mindsets. Would it have sounded judgmental to say his claim was a gross generalization? It probably would have, so we didn’t come right out and say it. Instead, we went looking for other people’s opinions on the matter because, well, we do love us some research!
Perhaps one of the greatest challenges people face when committing to a 12-step program is the “God part.” It is often the case that we feel let down or forgotten by God, or that God has somehow favored others over us. The freedom to define a Higher Power for ourselves is liberating. As we are encouraged to align with a God of our understanding, we begin to see the light in a very real way. But what about atheists and agnostics? There are those who are perfectly comfortable not believing in God or questioning the existence of “a Power greater than ourselves.” And yes, they get sober, too…
Sometimes you forget just how important it is to have confidence in yourself until the moment you need it most. For many battling addiction, years of substance abuse has eroded all traces of self-assurance and makes recovery seem like an impossible goal. There comes a moment where the next step is either the sober path or deeper addiction — and you have to feel certain about your choice. We recently spoke to a few people in addiction recovery who explained that confidence isn’t just helpful in the process, but necessary. Here are a few of the insights they shared with us.
The title of today’s post is a lyric from the song “I’m on Fire” by Chuck Negron. Chuck is a former member of the band, Three Dog Night, and he recently released a video for the song. “I’m on Fire” is a beautiful tune that communicates Chuck’s struggle with addiction and his journey to spirituality and 25 years of sobriety. If you love this song––and the video––like we do , be sure to visit Chuck Negron’s YouTube channel.
Lately I’ve noticed attendance is kind of low at my regular meetings. It’s summer, and people are vacationing, and I find myself wondering, are my sober sisters and brothers attending meetings wherever they are? I don’t mean this in an inventory-taking kind of way; rather, I am genuinely interested. I love finding meetings when I travel to other cities––or even countries. Today’s guest post talks about attending AA meetings no matter where you are.
Wouldn’t Bill Wilson be a great choice when playing that game of “pick 3 people – alive or dead – fictional or real – that you’d like to sit with at a dinner table and shoot the breeze?” One thing I’d ask is, “How literally did you mean to suggest that the Big Book be taken? Do you think that there is any room for interpretation in the program?” In my imaginary conversation, Bill would say, “Hell,” (because he seems like the kind of crusty old codger who would start off like that) “I just want people to be able to stay sober and live in the sunlight of the spirit so they will know the joy, peace, and serenity I have come to know.”