So today has been a good day. Got up. Read my daily devotions. Went to work. Had a good day at work. After work, I went to an accountability group I’m a part of in my church (a group of men who meet weekly and have dinner, talk and ask each other questions about our week in an effort to keep us accountable to one another). After that I attended another meeting at my church for a group that organizes the service projects for the church. Then I went to the gym and did my daily workout. Now I’m relaxing and writing this. All in all I’d say I had a pretty darn good day!!
Now I won’t give you a rundown of my day with each post I write. I had a purpose in doing so today. I want to talk a little bit about something that is key to my recovery at this point in the game. That is the idea of being intentional and taking action. This is not my first go around with recovery. I have had several attempts and obviously several failures. So what is different this time? In previous attempts I would go to meetings like a good alcoholic should. I would read the literature. I even had a sponsor. I wouldn’t drink and do all these things, yet at some point life would bear down on me and all the meetings, literature and friends I may have had couldn’t keep me sober. I wanted to drink, so I drank, despite the fact that I didn’t want to. Why? I hadn’t taken action in my recovery. I hadn’t taken the suggestions given to me. You can read about going to the gym. Look up all the best workouts and line them out. You can plan the best diet program to supplement your workouts. Sign up for a gym that is convenient for you to use. Buy the best workout attire. But all this won’t do any good unless you take the action necessary and actually GO TO THE GYM!! The same goes in recovery. You can go to as many meetings as you can, talk to as many people as you can, read all the literature, repeat all the mantras and slogans, but if you don’t put the program into action in your life, you’re probably going to drink again. Such was the case with me. I just didn’t have the tools necessary to effectively live my life without alcohol, because I hadn’t taken any action in my program.
That is why taking action is important. Today, I work the steps of the program. You hear alot about the steps in the program, but until you actually start working them, they just won’t make sense. The steps are to help us change our way of thinking. I have a problem and that problem is me. Alcohol is merely a symptom of a much deeper problem. As I said before, I am selfish and self-centered by nature. If you take away the alcohol, but don’t change the way you act and behave, it’s just a matter of time before you wind up right back where you started. These days when I feel restless, irritable or discontent, I try to figure out why I’m feeling that way. I used to feel that way all the time and didn’t think anything of it. I figured everyone felt that way. Now I try to get to the root of the problem. Is it that I’m not being accepting? Am I not being loving and tolerant? Do I have a resentment that needs resolved? These are the things that are still there even when the alcohol is gone. My sponsor always points out to me that each time I drank again after a period of sobriety, I made that decision totally sober. So what drove me to the point that I made the most insane decision possible without even an ounce of alcohol in my body? I hadn’t taken any action in my recovery. When I feel out of sorts and can’t figure out just what’s wrong, I take action and tell someone else what I’m feeling. Sometimes it takes someone else to point out why you might be feeling a certain way. Whatever the case may be, I try to take action to figure out what is going on in my mind, before I get to the point that I’m drunk again, with no idea how it happened.
The point I was making at the beginning of this post with listing what I did today was this. At this point in my recovery I am being intentional with my life and my decisions. I am taking the action necessary to keep myself sober for today. I was certainly intentional with my drinking. I would walk 4 miles to the liquor store in the rain-shaking, sweating, and panting just to get a bottle of Vodka to relieve the pain of withdrawal (yes, that did actually happen). So why would I not put the same effort into my recovery, so that I can enjoy a happy, healthy and joyful life? I decided I wanted more out of life than I was getting before, so I take great care to be intentional and spend my time doing those things that help me grow as a person, grow spiritually and on those things that I enjoy (this one is just as important as the others…you gotta have fun too!!!)
So my question to anyone who might be reading this is this: Are you being intentional with your life and taking action to get the most out of everyday?
Now time to rock out to some Van Halen (David Lee Roth era Van Halen of course)!!! Goodnight everyone!!!