If Plan A Fails; There Are 25 More Letters In The Alphabet

Early on in sobriety we began to work the steps. Often our sponsors had us read from The Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of Alcoholics Anonymous. It didn’t matter if another substance was our drug of choice. The wisdom of the Twelve and Twelve was universal. Most of us went through the steps in the first year or two. Sometimes however a person would spend years on a particular step and be unable to move forward. When questioned, they would often claim that they were stuck because “it wasn’t good enough” or “not complete”. Part of the problem was that their perfectionism and fear of failure had carried over from their days when they were active in their addiction. In the past, they had exhibited the same type of behavior. They had often avoided challenges because of their fear of failure. If they did finally push themselves to take a risk, and they failed, they would fall into depression or turn to their drug of choice. In sobriety, we have learned that we can drop our perfectionism. That when we do take a risk and fail, there are many other options open to us. And as far as the steps are concerned; they need not be perfect. We will make the necessary changes the next time around when we do them again.

Personal Reflection: How do I react to failure?

Do One Thing Every Day That Scares You

It took courage for us to enter that AA or NA or OA meeting for the first time. Walking down the steps to the meeting we had the impulse to turn around, but we didn’t. Fighting that initial fear was the beginning of our recovery journey. As we went through the steps, we exhibited courage as well. Admitting to our character defects was a daunting process. Making amends to others tapped into inner strength.
With all that said, somewhere along the way, perhaps we became a little too complacent. We began to become very comfortable with the status quo. Our lives had certainly gotten better, yet on some level we had become stuck in a type of static limbo. Our lives had improved greatly but growth had ceased. It was only when we began to take risks again that our evolvement was refueled. We learned that there was a big difference between the “risky behavior” of our past vs taking risks that could provide movement forward in our journey of recovery. Though it might be a bit uncomfortable, pushing through fear of people, places or things could yield big dividends.

Personal Reflection: Have I become stuck in a comfortable place?