Hello Recovering People!
I have been traveling; so have not checked in for a while. Of all of the possible topics to discuss now, it seems that maintaining recovery while traveling could be useful. Spring break is coming up for those on a school schedule and others may be planning summer trips already.
In the past, my vacations were a product of my addiction, just like everything else. Continue reading
Having Had a Spiritual Awakening
“Having had a spiritual awakening as a result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to addicts, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.”
Spiritual awakening? What’s that? You know when you have had one, whether sudden, like a lightening bolt (hit’s forehead and says, ” I coulda’ had a V-8″, thinking, “why did this take me so long?”) or a gradual and subtle infusion of a sense of…connectedness. I am reminded of the cute little saying, “Life is what happens while you are making plans.” Similarly, a spiritual awakening is what happens while you are working the steps. We focus on working hard at the step in front of us, working them in order, struggling to “get a God”, making ourselves write out an inventory and look at resentments, gritting our teeth and looking at our part in these old and new struggles. Then we move on, with the help of a sponsor, someone who has worked the steps and had a serious and positive change in his or her life. We look more at ourselves, at traits we want to remove; we ask for God’s help in hitting “delete” on some of the stuff in our personality and behavior we find objectionable. Continue reading
Improve Our Conscious Contact With God
“We 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 it out.”
We come into recovery with one of three positions on God.
- A belief that God exists, is good and can work positively in our lives.
- A lack of belief, or a belief that God does not exist or that we don’t know and don’t care.
- A belief that God exists and is not good or caring. We confuse God with Religion and may have been harmed in the name of Religion. We reject the concept that we can have a working relationship with a God who loves and cares for us. Continue reading
Continuing Personal Inventory
We continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
Pg 84 in the AA Big Book says, “This thought brings us to Step Ten.” What thought? The thought that the promises of recovery will ALWAYS materialize IF we work for them.
I have often said, to my patients as well as in my writings, there are two parts of recovery that require our attention:
- getting clean.
- staying clean.
Anyone can get clean; staying clean is another matter. Continue reading
Make Direct Amends
“We made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.” So reads step nine in over one hundred 12 step programs.
Some amends (the word means changes) are obvious. The cash register honesty stuff is pretty straightforward: you took it; now, in recovery, return it.
Example: A doctor friend of mine stole a piece of equipment from another doctor. Continue reading