The Habit of Sobriety

I was an avid reader of self help books for most of my adult years, especially toward the end of my drinking. I had a bookcase full of them. I'd pour myself a tumbler of wine, crack open a book and search for the solution to my life. I was convinced that somewhere within the pages of one of these books I'd discover why I didn't have the energy to look for work, why I couldn't hold a relationship together; why my life held no interest or enthusiasm. At that point the only thing I had to look forward to was the next drink.

One of the books I read was called "Seven Habits of Highly Effective People." Maybe you've heard of it. One of the habits the author suggests is to "Live a God-centered life." I thought this sounded like the answer for me, but I quickly realized I had no idea what God was and no clue about how to coax God into the center of my life. I certainly wasn't ready to quit drinking if that was one of the requirements.

Finally I received the gift of desperation and crawled into the rooms of Alcoholics Anonymous. You told me early on if I really wanted to stay sober I might want to follow some suggestions: go to meetings, read the literature, be of service, take the steps. In the beginning I did these things because I feared what might happen if I didn't, but soon I began to enjoy the AA way of life. I fell into the habit of sobriety -- meetings, steps, service. This habit has served me well for almost 20 years. I continue to do all the things you suggested in my first couple of weeks and my life continues to get better and better.

My message of recovery is simple. Get into the habit of sobriety. Do what's suggested regardless of what else is going on in your life. Make AA the first item on your to-do list. Work the steps to take yourself out of the center of your life and make space in your consciousness for your HP. Sooner or later you will begin to live a God-centered life. Just like the book says!