We often take for granted, what we do every day to stay sober. We often forget that sobriety is a full-time job. And we often forget what that last drink tasted like and what it did to us, and where we ended up.
Once we put down the DRINK, the game becomes all about the “THINK.”
We move from our drinking problem, into the thinking problem.
Tonight we read from the book and Step Ten. And what is always the case, when we get here, is that we all say out loud … “Well, I could do this better.”
Taking that daily inventory and those simple questions:
Was I Selfish, Dishonest, Resentful or Fearful ?
Add to this list: What are my motives ? Should I really do this or say that ?
I know, back in 2012, when the women of Tuesday Beginners began to introduce a certain structure to our lives, by way of the work they were doing with their own sponsees, I learned a new way to work my program.
That structure became a solid tool that I used with every single person I worked with since. And it did work.
Writing is something I do, often. Taking to someone about my list has been, not so much. I’m not connecting with another human on a regular basis, like I used to. But, I often find myself in places with certain older men and women, who remind me to check my motives.
In the recent past, they have cautioned me against speaking AND acting. I ignored that advice, which turned into one huge Shit Storm.
I need to practice keeping my mouth shut in public. Because I know, not many people are interested in hearing what they really need to do, even if I think they need to hear it.
My friend Philippe talks about the Book and the Work as necessities. Getting honest and doing the work, because sobriety IS WORK.
You cannot get sober by Osmosis.
But for the most part, people don’t want to break a sweat. They want to come to a meeting, sit there and suck it up like a sponge, then walk out of the room, and in a matter of minutes forget, everything that they just heard.
They don’t go home and write it down. They aren’t learning on the same scale that I am. Because alcoholics are a science project to study, intimately.
I go home, write, dissect, and I learn everything I can about everyone around me. That’s how I got sober and continue to stay sober. By watching and noting stupidity, strengths, weaknesses, successes and failures.
What we have is a daily reprieve, contingent on the maintenance of our Spiritual condition.
There is no One Way to do Step Ten. There is no grand plan, or method.
Once of my friends, at the last World Convention, in Atlanta, went to find those men and women who did it, “The Right Way.” In the end he was surprised to find that even with those OLD TIMERS who were 50 plus years sober, at that event, there was no RIGHT method.
The only thing that mattered was that, we took inventory, and when we were wrong, promptly admitted it.
I don’t work with others, like I used to.
The one thing my guys have going for them is this …
We work, on a daily basis, on our Spiritual Teachings. Based on Spiritual Principles as taught to us, by men who teach us how to do that.
If you are not reading the Book, then why not ?
If you aren’t working your program, then why not ?
If you aren’t going to meetings, then why not ?
If you aren’t working with others, then why not ?
Sobriety is a gift. And sharing that gift with another is vitally important to staying sober.
One alcoholic working with another.
Doctor Bob’s Humility Prayer on his desk … A friend spoke these words tonight:
“Perpetual quietness of heart. It is to have no trouble. It is never to be fretted or vexed, irritable or sore; to wonder at nothing that is done to me, to feel nothing done against me.
It is to be at rest when nobody praises me, and when I am blamed or despised, it is to have a blessed home in myself where I can go and shut the door and pray to my father in secret and be at peace, as in a deep-sea of calmness, when all around and about is seeming trouble.”