I started this collection of phrases, hints, good ideas, funny comments and opinions because I could not remember things that I heard in a meeting. Phrases or comments that startled, or moved or made sense to me were forgotten by the end of the meeting. Frustrated, I began to bring a small notebook and write those things which I wanted to remember in it. It occurred to me after some time that the language we speak in Alcoholics Anonymous is universal amongst ourselves. I can share with you, even in shorthand, because I know you will understand and perhaps identify.
I was told that if I came back often and long enough, someone would tell my story. It has become my opinion over some years that if I am listening hard enough, you all tell my story. It is a simple tale: I drank and I lost. I found some power or force other than myself and I got better. They told me to sit down and try and identify, not compare. To see if I could relate to anything anyone said in that meeting. To see if I could figure out what kind of a person the speaker was. To see if I could really hear what the speakers had to say.
In my arrogance, I balked. Just give me the gist of this really quickly, I said, and I will be on my way. I was a smart sophisticated fellow with sophisticated problems. Just keep coming they told me. They knew all about guys like me and were willing against long odds to love me anyway until I could learn to love myself. This compilation of remarks is an attempt to repay that never to be repaid debt. The remarks are, as far as I know, all from alkys, all captured at meetings on the hoof so to speak, and all as accurate as I can be. If you have heard them before, good for you, pass them on. If you are like I was, convinced that this simple program could not possibly work for you, welcome and keep coming. If you said it, thanks. If you need some help or a reminder you are not alone, help yourself. If you can identify with a comment, use it freely when you speak. Uniqueness kills many more people than unattributed phrases and the experience, strength and hope of one alcoholic when shared with another is truly and freely given away.
I was told to try and identify, not compare, terrific advice. It did not matter who I drank with or how much, or where or what penalties I paid. It did matter that I was addicted to alcohol, helpless and doomed. My story was no different than the next guy’s. I drank and I lost. It is my opinion that if you can turn off the judge in your head and just identify with the feelings, with the human being sharing in a meeting you will most certainly hear something worthwhile. If you can do that much, you are on your way to a life that is second to none. When you find that, pass it on to the next person. If you are in a situation where there are few or no meetings, see if you can imagine the full truth of any of these sayings. Do you know what the person speaking really means? Perhaps you share a similar problem. There is a solution. 2
The language used here is not always pretty. I have made some small effort to clean things up while preserving the sense of intensity and vocabulary of the speaker. Our common problems are not pretty either, yet we must look squarely at them. If you find that the language gets in your way, just ignore it, or change it to suit your own style. Whatever you do, don’t drink about it or make that foolish judgment some make that the content cannot be taken seriously because the language is rough. Don’t let the messenger get in the way of the message. Some of the most moving and important things I have heard have come from the most unexpected people. All self references are those of the speaker. We use alky, drunk, bozo, alcoholic, recovering alcoholic and all such reference to ourselves in the most loving sense. Nowhere will you find a group of people exercising less judgment in their description of the alcoholic.
This book is in addition to and is not a substitute for the Big Book, the Twelve and Twelve or any other piece of the standard literature. It is certainly not a substitute for an AA meeting. It is the hope of the author and of all the speakers that the reader can find some thought or nugget of wisdom here and identify and not compare with the meaning of the speaker from the heart. We all sincerely hope that some help is found here by the next sick and suffering alcoholic. I am grateful for each and every person I have listened to in meetings, even the obnoxious, the angry, the scoffers, the “bleeding deacons”, the deniers and the people sometimes like myself, too arrogant to hear. I sincerely hope this small effort helps.
This material is copyrighted. Purchasing this book gives the purchaser specific rights including the right to share the book, quote from it briefly, or lend it to friends. It specifically does not give the purchaser or anyone else the right to resell, copy, or post the book on the internet or anywhere else. Any revenues from this book will be used to help alcoholics. 3
How to use this book
This book has the collected wisdom of hundreds of alcoholics. The sayings are from people at all stages of recovery. Some have multiple problems and some do not. Some have walked in the doors and never had another drink again; some are drunk right now; some have had to go out and return, some have had to bounce in and out for years and a significant number have died trying. Each and every one has the fervent wish that his or her story or comment will help another person somewhere, somehow, not have to go down that road to the end.
We all invite you to take the things you find helpful and leave the rest. This book is not a debate. It does not claim to be anything but the experiences and opinions of a number of alcoholics. You can go through this book in order, or by topic (experience, strength, hope). The purpose is to help you find and use sayings which you can identify with to aid recovery. You can use it to start a discussion, to create a motto for yourself, to point out to another alcoholic the kind of thinking we all had to contend with. You can also use it to provide a group in print to identify with, to challenge your own or others stinking thinking, or to provide a source of hope for the hopeless. If you wish you can make notes right in the book to remind you of the way you understood the phrase or story. It might prove to be an interesting map of your growth and development as you move through the changes that we alkys all have to take to be happy joyous and free.
Some of the concepts in this book are best talked over with your sponsor or perhaps a counselor. We who have been there know that some issues are best resolved through the help of a caring and understanding professional. Many of us have overcome severe problems in addition to alcohol. There are no problems which are made better by drinking.
Happily, most of those who contributed have been able to maintain recovery and live happy, contributing, joyous lives. Please be quick to see where they are right. Somehow it has worked for them and it will work for you. Each of the people who have contributed to this book is, as we like to say, “just another Bozo on the bus”. They are not saints or role models all the time or people of special intelligence. They are just like you and me, people who have been completely defeated by alcoholism and who have sought and found a way out. With this experience, and the desire to help the next person we are people of special vision. We wish you the same journey. 4
1. I have the disease of More.
2. I was the king of Psychobabble.
3. Alcoholics who go out and drink and make it back inevitably come back with an arrow or two in them on an emotional level.
4. I was sick and tired of living that way and afraid to die.
5. Craving simply doesn’t happen in regular folks.
6. I was perfectly willing to do anything necessary to drink.
7. I was as desperate as the dying can be.
8. I was in a tug of war with God.
9. The world and people in it dominated us resulting in 100 forms of fear.
10. How corrosive resentment was for me.
11. My parents were alcoholics. We [my family and I] lived in cars.
12. The AA’s I met early on were not trying to change me but they would not take my crap.
13. I was miserable in my own skin.
14. There are people out there who will use and abuse anyone to get what they want. I was one of them.
15. Any alcoholic likes to think of himself in terms of his intentions.
16. To plant a seed and stand over it waiting for a tree to grow is a waste of life.
17. There weren’t too many people who were smarter than I was when I got here.
18. The most important thing I can tell you about me is that I have not had a beer all day.
19. My next drink will cost me everything I care about including myself; the one after that will cost $5.00.
20. Perhaps the only thing I ever did every time in my life was to drink when I got the craving.
21. When you come in new – we know you. As a matter of fact, we think more of you than you do of you. Just come along with us.
22. The bottle of booze owned me and I did not know it.
23. I needed the courage to change. I began to lose respect for those who would be right and die rather than compromise. Where does principle become insanity?
24. Every time I drank I felt crummy when I got sober.
25. We were absolutely unable to stop drinking on the basis of self knowledge. (BB)
26. I placed myself in a position to be harmed.
27. Let’s drink at ‘em.
28. He’s a hell of a guy once you get by the pain.
29. It was total self inflicted pain.
30. Pain got me here.
31. The change in my life didn’t really take place on my terms.
32. For an alcoholic, It’s not how you really feel, it’s how you look.
33. When I go to a funeral I want to be the corpse.
34. I did not do the steps to be a good AA member; I was in s**t up to here.
35. How could I have been that dumb again?
36. I was disappointed in life early.
37. Drinking to live and living to drink.
38. If alcohol is part of my life it does not matter what the other part is.
39. I was focusing on being bored.
40. I did not know whether to scratch my watch or wind my ass.
41. Sponsor: Are you an Alcoholic? Answer: I think so. Sponsor: Well call me back when you know.
42. I used my anger for power.
43. I was a microwave drinker with a Crockpot recovery.
44. The big lie: I don’t need this anymore.
45. I am just beginning to believe what I am talking about.
46. The drunk you were and still could be again…
47. You buy a 12 pack and start knocking them out – then they start knocking you out.
48. I was shaking like a wet puppy.
49. Living in the head of a drunk is excruciating.
50. If it is 10 miles into the woods, it is 10 miles out.
51. When you get sober your ego is the first thing to come back.
52. I don’t make the chaos I used to make.
53. My mood is not a good indicator of how things are for me.
54. I just wanted to be happy.
55. I expected to die a drunk.
56. The best thing that happened to me early on was I got a sponsor right away.
57. All I wanted was a husband, a house, and a Harley.
58. It sure helps if you have drunk enough before you come into the rooms.
59. I only stayed drunk one day at a time.
60. I continually want what is unavailable to me – I start out every day feeling deprived, less than, and undeserving. It is a terrible mental habit.
61. I drank again and it wasn’t even fun.
62. I suffer from turbo brain.
63. Only derelicts went to AA.
64. In my house it was not ok to have negative emotions.
65. I was always boarding the good ship righteousness.
66. Forgiving myself was the first step In forgiving others.
67. I could not get rid of my character defects because I did not know I had them.
68. When I became willing to clean house the obsession to drink vanished.
69. Alcohol was not working anymore – it did not shut out the pain.
70. Why would I carry around a judgmental attitude and punish myself with it; if I am going to carry it I may as well punish you with it.
71. I just do not want to do it anymore – rage, judgment etc. the destructive habits of mind.
72. I wake up in paradise every morning and by noon I am trying to shoot my way out.
73. My head hurts from running into the same wall again and again.
74. “I can’t change” almost killed me.
75. I was telling Him He was wrong.
76. I could not accept who and what I was.
77. What if when you meet God He asks “Have you enjoyed what I have given you?”
78. No matter how miserable you are, no matter how much you hate yourself, you don’t have enough willpower to quit drinking.
79. The bottle should be labeled like a land mine “Front towards the Enemy”.
80. I am deaf in my left ear and the devil gets on my right side.
81. God I remember the last time, lets not go there.
82. If I don’t trust my Higher Power based on my past, I’m screwed.
83. The pain and discomfort I experience in life pale in comparison to the pain and discomfort I imagined on a daily basis.
84. Someone somewhere let you believe it was OK to abuse yourself.
85. Life demanded I be impossibly good or impossibly bad.
86. I came here for mercy, not for justice.
87. It was important to me so surround myself with people who thought as little of themselves as I did of me.
88. I had a disease I could not master in any way.
89. I never had character or principles, but I can borrow them today.
90. I just figured you drop out of your mother into a hostile environment and crawl forward under fire until you drop into your grave.
91. When I worried that they were going to fire me I just stayed drunk until they did it.
92. When I am upset, something is wrong with me because the feelings come from inside me and reflect my spiritual condition.
93. If I trust Him, I might not have a drink; if I don’t I don’t have a prayer.
94. Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional. You can be as miserable as you want as long as you want.
95. It took three years for me to realize I was as sick as you guys.
96. One drink is too many and one thousand is not enough.
97. My Dad was the town drunk and I was the town drunk’s understudy. I was the only guy in the drunk tank with homework.
98. My car broke down and I my only concern was how I was going to get my beer home.
99. I didn’t take off my clothes, I didn’t go to jail and I didn’t get beat up. It was a pretty good day.
100. Gratitude is an Attitude.
101. I was lying on the floor, crawling over to my vodka. I though that it was normal.
102. I had no clue how to live life; I just took what I wanted and threw the rest away.
103. Some people drink over broken shoelaces, others drink over the death of hope.
104. I don’t miss any of that crap that went with drinking.
105. Anger and resentment was eating me alive.
106. Looking back, I could not believe I let those people run my life.
107. I was not willing to go to meetings but I was trying to find any other way not to suffer.
108. The only friend I had was the beer.
109. On our second date I threw up on her.
110. Leaving her was the most loving thing I did for her.
111. FOG was used in our family – fear, obligation, guilt.
112. I always searched for God in bits and pieces.
113. I had a crazy husband, my kids were crazy, I was crazy; I cried out to God to help me in my home.
114. I realized the grief and horror I put my mom though and I thank God every day that I finally stumbled through these doors.
115. God had done an intervention on me; I had had a spiritual awakening.
116. I did what they told me to do.
117. When I was looking for the devil I found the devil and when I was looking for God I found God.
118. I demanded that you tell me I was OK.
119. My parents just worked our family over something terrible. It was the best that they could do but it wasn’t good enough.
120. In the middle of the night it is just fears and shakes and sweats.
121. Old timers scared the s**t out of me.
122. My accomplishments failed to live up to my expectations for myself.
123. I was charged with drunk driving and my attorney had a “gun bearer”; a fellow who followed him everywhere with a bottle in a briefcase. I thought that was normal and clever.
124. “God damn it , are you back again?” versus “Keep coming back.”
125. I’m an extreme guy.
126. I am sober today and I am doing the best that I can.
127. All I knew was how to drink and how to run.
128. I lived at the extremes – rigid and controlling or chaotic and overdependent.
129. For all the people and all the stuff that happened to me, I put myself in the position to be harmed.
130. I share that pitiful and incomprehensible sense of demoralization with everyone in this room.
131. I was in that dark world of sick and suffering alcoholics. I could not imagine being grateful to be alive.
132. I was scared to death of life.
133. How do you really feel? Are you tired of the outside? Is it time to get real? My mind says I am OK but I am not.
134. I destroyed my life. My friends are real honest to goodness s**theads.
135. I have been pretty much overwhelmed by life.
136. The worse it hurt the longer I stayed in it.
137. I was drinking more than your average 11 year old was.
138. When I lose faith I cannot see things clearly.
139. If I could have “easy done it” I might not have become an alcoholic to begin with.
140. Emotional security to me meant getting my own way. That meant being a doormat or being dominant.
141. When someone enables us, we alternately love and hate that care.
142. I just knew I could fix him.
143. Once I took my first drink I was an active alcoholic, I just did not know it. All my thoughts were about how to get the next one.
144. I thought I might shoot myself but I did not think I would drink. I drank.
145. If I am not working on my character defects, if I am not aware of them, then they are running the show.
146. “I used to like you a lot better when you were drinking.” “Funny, I used to like you a lot better when I was drinking too.”
147. What can I put in my mind to make me miserable today?
148. Drinking caused me intense mental and physical suffering.
149. “I got hit by a truck.” “No s**t, so did I.” “No I mean it I really got hit by a truck; I was crossing a street and got hit. I spent 19 months in rehab, it saved my life.”
150. What happened to me is inexplicable.
151. I referred to those al anons as cookie bakin’ bitches, but they were right.
152. One drink is too many and 1000 is never enough.
153. I used to hide and pray.
154. I’m always under the weather and mostly it is mental.
155. I ask my higher power “where is my self pity? Where did it come from? What can I do about it?”
156. I was selfish, dishonest self seeking and frightened.
157. “I will not love anyone because they will be taken from me”, equals insanity.
158. There isn’t a pill out there, there isn’t a drink out there, there isn’t an exercise, not a religion, not enough work, love, or self knowledge to make me feel normal.
159. I found myself alone, watching TV with no electricity.
160. When drinking I lived from one character defect to another.
161. When I stopped drinking I had nothing to hold on to.
162. I did not know how to trust.
163. I couldn’t save my face and my ass at the same time.
164. Many of us have been transportationally challenged due to our own behavior.
165. The pain brought me here.
166. I spent three nights in jail before anyone knew who I was.
167. I am going to a party. I don’t want to go to the party but she is good looking, has what I want and I am willing to go to any length to get her.
168. I would do it all again, I would go through all that again to have the last ten years.
169. I lived burdened by relentless futility.
170. I drank beyond despair. I did not want to drink anymore years before I got here.
171. Alcohol and drugs controlled my feelings, then they stopped working and I could only feel miserable or unconscious.
172. I was too embarrassed, too ashamed of who I was to get help.
173. I drank because I wanted to feel a part of.
174. I lived enough hell that this is heaven to me.
175. Christmas is a tough time. I celebrated the advent of Christianity by sitting in some s**thole with six other losers and getting hammered.
176. [To a newcomer] Don’t tell us what you think, we might remember it by accident and it might kill us. It is killing you.
177. For me today, to drink is to die.
178. I was clueless and suffering and defiant.
179. Alcohol leveled the playing field in all the areas I thought I was weak.
180. Once I take off the boxing gloves and I take off the armor I meet a whole different group of people than I do when I have them on.
181. I went to an AA meeting and thought “What is a man of my caliber doing in a place like this. It must be some miscarriage of justice.”
182. They say that to drink is to die – No Way! It is to set yourself up for 10 to 20 years of agony.
183. Killing yourself with alcohol is a long, slow, terrible, pointless death. It is like clipping yourself to death with a pair of nail clippers.
184. I wrote myself off as one of those unfortunates bodily or mentally unable to tell the truth.
185. Some of the best Marines I know were alcoholics.
186. I just wanted one thing – not to be a beaten down, miserable, angry drunk.
187. I found all kinds of reasons to say that that [not drinking] can’t be the answer.
188. My best thinking got me here.
189. It took all that tragedy to get me here today.
190. I had my mental blinders on.
191. Part of growing up is just telling on myself.
192. Try as hard as I could I did not invent any new sins. Pride, greed, lust, anger, gluttony envy and sloth was the best I could do.
193. I was a prideful drunk and then a prideful alcoholic.
I was naturally familiar with the seven deadly sins and I practiced them to the best of my ability.
195. I just wanted to be ok – to be loved and accepted
196. It is hard to have much fellowship as a jerk. I had many opportunities for fellowship. I got many invitations, I just did not get second invitations.
197. There is no greater gift a person can get than the lights going on.
198. We are not here because of our common virtues.
199. I felt good the very first time I came into these rooms.
200. If it was before 3 am when I woke up I would just grab the bottle of vodka next to the bed and drink enough to go back to sleep. If it was 3:30 am I would just have one or two belts, if it was 4 am I would get up.
201. I’d take a drink because it made me smarter.
202. I had bottles hidden everywhere and I lived alone.
203. Alcohol allowed me to overcome the fears, the insecurity, and fit in. It was not until I could admit complete defeat in both alcohol and in life that I could face the fears and insecurity and admit them and be who I really was.
204. The big lie: this time will be different.
205. I had no defense whatsoever against alcohol until I came to AA.
206. If you had my mind you would drink too.
207. I got a nudge from the judge.
208. No matter how bad I felt, no matter how screwed up my life was, my brain said that maybe it would be different this time. It wasn’t.
209. I had a huge ego and no self esteem.
210. My eyes had cleared up enough to see my soul.
211. My wife and I had 26 dollars to our name and 21 years sober and she told me that God had not let us down yet. That is when my faith began.
212. I was used to living miserably.
213. The pleasure was fleeting and the pain was permanent.
214. God does not talk to me through my radio any more.
215. I was driving 90 miles an hour with my feet nailed to the floor.
216. I fell in love that night…with a beverage!
217. I carried a full bouquet of mental quirks.
218. He did what I later learned that guys in AA do…he said the most gawdawful things about himself and then everybody clapped. So I believed him.
219. My life was a series of unfulfilled unrealistic expectations.
220. I never want to hear “If you want something to cry about I will give you something to cry about” again.
221. There was always alcohol in my house. There might not have been much else but the booze was there.
222. Booze worked – it blotted out my consciousness.
223. I am an alcoholic. Left to my own devices I will hurt you and I will kill myself.
224. Alcoholic prayer: God what is wrong with me?
225. I looked at the slogans and I thought to myself “This is some of the lamest s**t I have ever heard.”
226. I am sure I drank to escape my conscience.
227. God had saved my life by giving me alcohol. It allowed me to live long enough to get out of that house.
228. I’m _____ and I am a third generation alcoholic.
229. We were up in this cabin in the woods, doing what we always did – drinking and shooting flies off the walls. I went down to the lake for water and the thing exploded. We did not
know that there was some dynamite stored in the attic. The other two guys were killed and I was not for some reason. It has taken me a long time to deal with that.
230. Awful and Should were big words in my family.
231. I called it my morning purge – forcing booze down until some stayed.
232. Sooner or later it will turn on you. You will drink a ton of it and your best friend will not work anymore.
233. Every criminal thing I ever did I was drunk.
234. I got some great breaks in life and I gave ‘em all away for booze.
235. I was drinking to live and living to drink, suicidal and wanting to die.
236. Since we both had our issues, between the two of us we had a real rodeo going.
237. I never found a drink that cured me.
238. I can analyze the joy right out of it.
239. I had a good angel on one shoulder and a bad angel on the other shoulder and they were both drunk.
240. I know that I am rambling and not making a whole lot of sense but that is partly who I am.
241. I used fear, obligation and guilt to get what I wanted.
242. This moment is the single most important part of my day. I used to think that the way I felt at this moment was the way I would feel for the rest of my life.
243. That insane thought process always ends in … and therefore I can drink.
244. I was afraid in kindergarten. I was afraid of the white cartons of milk. I was afraid of the graham crackers.
245. I was a free lance pharmacist.
246. I was scared of being ridiculed. I was scared of finding out who I really was.
247. Who did I hurt the most? It was always me.
248. I’ve never had a boss who knew anything.
249. I used to put out the fire with a bucket of gasoline.
250. As long as you are buying the beer you can get a lot of guys to start hating people.
251. This alcoholic doesn’t change when he sees the light, only when he feels the pain.
252. My name is Half Measure Maury and I am an alcoholic.
253. I liked drinking with people who did not live in houses.
254. I ask my Higher Power to remove my depression.
255. When I was drinking I had a Santa Claus God.
256. I was not progressing. I was not regressing. I was just gressing.
257. You people offered me more help than I would accept.
258. At that time I did not even want my life.
259. Crack is crucifying.
260. Once my brain wakes up I am in deep s**t.
261. Often the s**tty committee has its meeting without me present.
262. I did not feel anything and I did not care – why live?
263. Maybe I was in line at 6 am in the beer store because I was an over achiever.
264. It was the pain, remorse, repetition, failure, self loathing, hopelessness, and that very intense loneliness that led to my frustration.
265. I have thoughts in my head like professional wrestling. They are entertaining but they are not real.
266. My ego puts me in an antagonistic position towards other people and towards God.
267. When I was out there I heard Father Martin said “I don’t know where I am going but I am making excellent time.” That was where I was, clueless.
268. I was constantly restless, irritable, discontent, struggling. I did not know that it was caused by alcohol. I knew I was nuts and I knew I was an alcoholic but I just never put them together.
269. I would walk home from school praying that my mom would not be drunk when I got there.
270. I opened the refrigerator to get some orange juice and there were 6 beers in there lookin’ at me.
271. I lifted my mattress and looked at all my empty nips and God told me I was going to die.
272. I was always people pleasing, trying to fit in, being a chameleon.
273. I always had to struggle to the top of the heap. From that situation, for all those years I did not have one friend.
274. I did not know anyone in my life that had gotten sober and stayed sober.
275. My thinking was so totally screwed up that I believed everything I thought.
276. You drink too much.
277. I never thought that I drank to get drunk. In my mind I was out there to socialize. I always got drunk. It kept me from getting sober for years.
278. What broke me and allowed me to listen was a daughter.
279. I was too cool to be caught having a good time.
280. I got drunk the day my mom got out of prison.
281. I have 2 gears – doormat and ax murderer.
282. I would go down into the basement and fill up all my pint bottles and put them in the car in strategic places.
283. All I wanted to do was to live in a high rise apartment, have a black girlfriend and shoot the Mutants. I thought I was fine.
284. I traded my dignity and self respect for a drink.
285. I could not stand you guys – all the geekism!
286. I am chronically malcontent, rebellious, and different. Nothing is ever good enough for me.
287. I was so afraid of booze, so afraid to live, and so afraid to be that person I could not stand again.
288. I didn’t do confrontation well at the time and I don’t do well with it later. It has always been a trigger for my drinking.
289. If you don’t like God when you leave the rooms of AA, alcohol will kick your ass right back in.
290. We already had a wake for him before he died.
291. My life always comes down to self centered fear, as it says in the book, losing what I have or not getting what I want.
292. My only explanation: extreme alcoholic behavior.
293. When you lose a gonad in a knife fight with your mother, life is difficult.
294. “Keep it Simple” – I have a real problem with that.
295. I thought that you had to be old to be an alcoholic but I had to slam a tall boy just to get to work.
296. My morals receded like the horizon.
297. I did not realize how unhappy I had been until I looked back.
298. EGO stands for Evangelizing my Greatness to Others.
299. My fears are not something that exists out there. Life is not out to get me. The fears are all in my own head. I made drinking and drugging my solution to these problems and that did not work.
300. Hurt people, hurt people.
301. I am very grateful to be a drunk because I cannot live out there in the world without these steps.
302. I only have three days sober and I am having feelings. I don’t know how to deal with them.
303. “I deserve a drink. I am not harming anyone but myself” was a lie I told myself. I hurt most those who loved and cared about me the most.
304. This is the last house on the block for me; I don’t have any other options.
305. I preferred intensity over intimacy. Chaos kept me from looking at myself.
306. We all knew at the bar we were alcoholics and we all knew we had to quit but none of us had the balls to go to a meeting.
307. Honesty scared the hell out of me.
308. If somebody said to me the things I say to myself occasionally, I would have to kill them.
309. I am one bullet shy of an A&E (Arts and Entertainment Network, the home of police shows) movie. I need to keep the channels to my HIGHER POWER clear.
310. I could not envision me without a drink. I was here to look good and after a while I cleared up enough to get involved.
311. I woke up one morning and went “YeeeHaaw! I have a will to live”
312. Somewhere along the line in my life I switched out God for a bottle of vodka.
313. I was living in fear and misery and the sad thing was that that situation was ok with me.
314. I have a black belt in beating myself up.
315. I had more anxiety than Christ had before they drove in the first nail.
316. I stopped going to meetings, I was sponsoring myself…..and I drank.
317. Page 62 is my favorite page in the Big Book. It tells me who I am.
318. I was pretending that I was normal. Everything was fine. It wasn’t a good day, it wasn’t a bad day, it was just a damn day. After 15 years sober I used again and could not stop.
319. I have been on this pink cloud for 32 years.
320. The booze worked. It took all the pain away but then I was a prisoner of a set of beliefs and emotions which were crazy.
321. When I am in my disease I am all I think about; no you, no kids, no God. It was such a relief to know that I was not in charge any more.
322. Once my wife and kids saw me on television eating at the Salvation Army. I was on the streets and on the skids.
323. There is a place worse than defiance and that is indifference – Today I don’t care. Today I will die or someone will stop me. I lived there for 5 years. I was absolutely powerless to stop. I was just marking time waiting to die. I did defiance for about 20 years and then one day it just did not matter any more.
324. I was fighting and fighting and fighting because I did not want to be an alcoholic, but then who does want to be an alcoholic?
325. I had a self righteous hatred of my dad even though I was just like him. I quit being like him when I could admit I was like him.
326. The lessons in AA come slow for me. I gotta get them in the heart.
327. When I came to my first meeting, it was my first experience of unconditional positive regard. I had never been somewhere where everyone was on my side.
328. I hated until I was sick and tired of hating the bastard.
329. You are one bitter bitch – who would want that?
330. I got so bad so fast that I could not lower my standards fast enough to get there. Then I got the great gift of desperation.
331. God is always in my corner. All the people I held resentments about were guiding my life instead of God. People at work used to call me Doom and Gloom.
332. Making myself a victim gave me a perfect excuse to drink.
333. I lack the ability to accept the things I cannot change.
334. I want to take credit when life is ok and blame God when it goes badly.
335. There are days that I can’t stand the fact that I have to rely on God and others to get through life. Then I think of the alternative.
336. I was married 4 times. When I said “I do” they believed me.
337. If you put a kid in a situation that they cannot make sense of, like the insanity of alcoholism, they will come to some explanation of it to their own detriment every time.
338. No one will beat me up like I beat me up.
339. I began to notice that I would see some friends and I would sit down and they would sit down over there. My sponsor suggested that maybe they just did not want to be around me.
340. You are an alcoholic if you think “what’s the sense of going to a dance without a drink?”
341. If I don’t change, my past will become my future.
342. When we got married we were going to be happy and we were going to be happy my way goddamn it.
343. I got divorced so I went back to the bar and drank away the pain then started looking around the bar for the right one.
344. My best thinking and my will got me this seat in AA.
345. The rules have not changed. The booze will take you to jails, institutions and death.
346. The world always looked to me like you were doing better than I was.
347. A man only needs four things in life: – food, shelter, women and strange women.
348. It became intuitively obvious to the most casual observer that I had a booze problem. Only I did not know.
349. I quit on my own for 5 years once and it was the worst 5 years of my life. I was either funny or pissed off all the time.
350. I resented the fact that I had to get up and live. I wanted to pull the blankets over my head and only get up to drink. I wanted to find a way to kill myself painlessly and have the insurance company give my wife a lot of money.
351. Alcohol and drugs finally beat me into a state of reasonableness.
352. When people would say that they were grateful in a meeting I would think “you’re retarded”. What have you got to be grateful for?”
353. All is well, not a cloud in the sky; I think I’ll drink.
354. My desire for utopia was killing me, perfection is only an aim.
355. I wasn’t worth locking up.
356. Most of my life has been guesswork. If I was not asking for help I was faking it.
357. If you want the biggest building in town, you can build the biggest building in town or you can tear down every other big building in town.
358. The truth was that I was so lonely.
359. I can see 6 guys sitting in a bar on Saturday morning, watching cartoons and agreeing that life sucks. I used to be there.
360. Perfectionism is rooted in pride. I was such a control freak. When I am in charge it does not work.
361. Control is an illusion. I am simply missing essential wiring for moderation. I have two speeds, stuck and 100 mph.
362. No matter what your topic is, you guys are talking about me.
363. How do you feel after a couple of beers? I always want more.
364. I know drinking would not fix it, but that doesn’t mean I won’t drink. That is the beauty of alcoholism.
365. Alcoholism is a disease of isolation.
366. A meeting is like those little dishes of pennies –take one if you need one or leave one if you have one. We are sometimes needy in a meeting and sometimes we can give love and support.
367. I really believed that if I was doing everything right, life would be easy. I did not know that I had to look at what was my part in it and what was I hiding.
368. I sit here a person who is completely, totally defeated by alcohol.
369. If you can identify with projectile vomiting, you may be one of us.
370. If I ever drink again I hope it kills me be cause that is the best of all the things that could happen.
371. My mysteries are not big deals to my sponsor.
372. I woke up in an alley in my own piss and vomit.
373. I came back from a slip and they did not criticize. They did not put me in a special section. They said “Welcome back.”
374. The steps got me to where I could deal with life. Give up, clear up, clean up, and take out the garbage.
375. If you have to control you are out of control.
376. Nobody gets here brimming over with self reliance and contentment.
377. I thought recovery was sexually transmitted.
378. I chose to be angry.
379. I was not going to allow my Higher Power to come in and tell me I was ok.
380. What did I give up to alcohol?
381. I was a wonder boy – people kept saying I wonder what’s wrong with that boy?
382. “Honey don’t worry I will get better.” “Dad I can’t wait anymore.”
383. At the company we did two things. One thing was building vehicles and the other was building gosh darn good alkys.
384. I don’t wait well.
385. I told rehab I was too drunk to drive and I would get there the next day. Then I drove to the liquor store for another pint.
386. My higher power gave me exactly as much pain as it took to get me to pay attention.
387. When it came to suffering, I was not a victim, I was a volunteer.
388. I don’t know what it is about two beers. Ask any alky how much they drank and they will tell you two beers.
389. I could not live sober and I could not die.
390. I am so defiant that if you told me to breathe in and out I would hold my breath.
391. My life was either bravado or fear.
392. One drink and nothing matters.
393. We lived in a car before it became fashionable.
394. To respond to my own needs is sometimes difficult. I have created the same kinds of chaos over and over.
395. The monkey is off my back but the circus is still in town.
396. My old lady was flipping me off and my own dogs were biting me. That was my bottom.
397. I am a juggernaut of justification.
398. The first person I stole from was my mother. Those coins haunted me for years.
399. I woke up and said good morning to the judgmental bastard.
400. The man woman thing is difficult.
401. I got fired a lot.
402. For a while I was real busy trying to die.
403. Pour alcohol all over your problems and they get worse.
404. I was always trying to just get somewhere safe in life and figure it out.
405. I was too wrapped up in the world out there.
406. I always believed in God I just never liked Him and did not think that He liked me either.
407. I spent years angry and feeling sorry for myself. I don’t want any more.
408. I was just a couple of bubbles out of plumb.
409. I am nervous because I walked around scoring myself. I was a series of planned disappointments.
410. I woke up ANGRY!
411. I could not imagine any real freedom in life.
412. My mother saved string. She had a ball of long string, a ball of short string and a pile of string too short to save.
413. I don’t know why I did those things and I don’t know why I hid ‘em.
414. The last person on the planet I wanted to get to know was me.
415. No matter how you fantasize it – it doesn’t ever get any better out there.
416. The thing an alky hates most is delayed gratification.
417. Why was it major? Because it was happening to me.
418. I did not know I was angry – everything was justified.
419. Our theme song is Me, Me, Me.
420. I could not be an alcoholic – I used ice cube s for god’s sake.
421. Did you ever think that sometimes God sends you people to hit?
422. We related first through mutual pain and despair.
423. Fighting life is exhausting.
424. I was always pissed off at something but I did not know what it was.
425. Drinking was my solution to living. It made living mean something.
426. I take an ego trip back into hopelessness.
427. Sponsor: You are the person I never want to be.
428. I would not have chosen my past.
429. When I stop doing what I am supposed to do my mind starts to close.
430. On my knees is a step up from flat on my a**.
431. Dad – we were not studying but we did not want to be downstairs when you got home.
432. If I list my top 10 friends, they all died of alcohol.
433. I had a constant pervasive pain as in the sense of being overwhelmed by life; of being without resources that would apply to living in any sensible way.
434. When desperate is the best feeling you have had in a few days you are in trouble.
435. It wasn’t a good day; it wasn’t a bad day; it was just a damn day.
436. I wasn’t one of you folks because I thought you were a bunch of losers crying in coffee cups.
437. What is wrong with this family? We’re all mad about nothing.
438. I was walking down the street and my brain attacked me.
439. I had so much fear that I could not trust even God. God does not want me to have resentments.
440. I heard that they shot and tranquilized a mountain lion and I thought where can I get a mountain lion suit?
441. I promised my ex wife, my mother and god that I would not drink any more. I could not stop.
442. I was going to make you like me. I had danced to everyone else’s music my whole life.
443. Drunk was as real as I ever got until you people showed me how to be real in safety.
444. If everyone in the room put their story on the wall or their troubles on the floor, you would want your own back, whatever they are.
445. The one thing I was never, ever going to be was a drunk. It was not up to me.
446. I was depressed because I was unwilling to be responsible for my own actions.
447. An alcoholic drinks no matter what.
448. I grew up not asking, not expecting which made me a really prime candidate for an alcoholic husband.
449. I did things to get punished because that was the only sign of attention and affection I got.
450. I am wired for self destruction.
451. Anger and resentment are just me trying to feel superior or even sometimes as good as you. They always hurt me, no exceptions.
452. I got up this morning and was surveying the wreckage of my future.
1. Are you going into things thinking that there is a script? That there is an exact right way?
2. I have the disease of More.
3. I am not a victim anymore; I am a volunteer.
4. No wallowing: action, action, action.
5. What if all those revenge fantasies became real?
6. Ah! That is why they did not ask me for my opinion – they did not want it!
7. I am not always all here or all there is.
8. When I am trying to control you, I am out of control.
9. You and I could not be all bad; we must have done something right.
10. The best way to handle life for me is to not handle it myself.
11. The only measure of my actions is: are they effective or not in keeping me sober or in helping another.
12. My morality is doing only that which I would not mind having on a billboard in front of my house.
13. It makes me safer to tell a lot of people what I am doing.
14. There is nothing that I can fix outside myself and I am a full time fixit job.
15. When I get to the top of the pyramid, who will I hug?
16. Only love heals.
17. Look at a brick wall – every single brick in it is flawed.
18. Just coming into a meeting and realizing that I recognized most of you guys was a great comfort.
19. I would be lost without these rooms.
20. Step 2 teaches me to be humble – I am just another Bozo on the bus.
21. If you don’t like a power greater than yourself, find a power other than yourself.
22. It is all or nothing here; life or death.
23. I can practice any of my character defects as long as I don’t do it for a prolonged period of time.
24. Honesty in and of itself is not brutal; you are. Honesty with out love is usually cruelty.
25. Booze, war, disease, will kill your babies for nothing.
26. What character defects did I drink over?
27. We have an illness that only a spiritual experience will conquer.
28. I found no pity here; just compassion and support.
29. If you have a drinking problem so what? There are a million guys with a drinking problem. What are you going to do about it? That is the question. If you want to drink get the hell out of here; if you want to stop drinking I have all the time in the world for you.
30. Am I still causing pain to those I love?
31. We built this meeting room – it was an effort of love.
32. Character is how you behave when no one is looking.
33. When I can face something ugly in myself I get freer.
34. My biggest fear was me. I learned how to trust myself and then I learned how to trust others.
35. That person is growing corn in your head and you are letting them.
36. I cannot do it on my own; Me = a group of obsessions flying in tight formation.
37. The owner of the choice is the owner of the consequences.
38. All our troubles are of our own making. If I look back in my life honestly I find that I made a decision based on self which caused me the trouble.
39. Today I must start where I am and do what I can.
40. If you need help, help someone else.
41. I realized that I had lowered my expectations all my life.
42. You can’t think your way out, you have to act your way out.
43. Don’t hold back on your expressions – do it. We alcoholics were the last people to know that there is no “right way” to be.
44. If you rent ‘em space in your head, rent ‘em space in a love room.
45. Respond, don’t just react.
46. Low self esteem is the daily convention of your fears.
47. Higher Power please maximize my usefulness to others.
48. I am not much but I am all I think about.
49. If you pick up a hot coal, drop it.
50. I am as honest as I can be, not as honest as I should be.
51. I came here to hear the message, not the method.
52. Pain stays, you have to see it through.
53. A drunk finds a lamp and rubs it. The Genie gives him three wishes. He wishes for an ice cold glass mug of beer which will never be empty. It appears in his hand and he takes a long drink. Sure enough it refills instantly. The genie asks what he would like for his second wish and he replies “I’ll have another.”
54. We don’t suffer well.
55. You are going to need help to live the AA life.
56. Would you go back and put you in charge of your life?
57. Don’t drink even if your ass falls off.
58. The hardest thing you will ever do is to get clean and sober and the second hardest thing is to stay clean and sober and grow.
59. The secret is to want what you have instead of what you don’t have.
60. I have suffered enough and so have you. I can stop punishing myself right now and so can you.
61. I can forgive myself for the fact that I am not perfect and accept the fact that I will never be.
62. Feelings are not facts, fatal, or forever.
63. Many of my character defects were learned as a way to survive in the world.
64. Today I can keep the focus on me and how I am in the world.
65. Goal: be sober in your thinking – have a clear mind and think good thoughts.
66. I am grateful today I am not standing in line waiting to buy my two pints.
67. What does my higher power want me to say or not say in this meeting?
68. What if when you meet God He asks “Have you enjoyed what I have given you?”
69. But for the grace of God.
70. If you think about feeling the glow; think about feeling the blackout, feeling the hangover.
71. Booze to me is life threatening.
72. You don’t go to a whore house to hear the piano player.
73. Not everything we see or hear is reality.
74. I do not have any business around booze at all. Nothing about it has changed; it is as awful as it always was for me.
75. Alcoholism seems to have little to do with alcohol.
76. Please and Thank You are important.
77. I was born sober I think.
78. I listen to my sponsor on a daily basis.
79. I am a fear based person.
80. Fear: Face Everything And Recover, False Evidence Appearing Real, F*** Everything And Run.
81. Does God giggle?
82. You are only as sick as your secrets but they will kill you.
83. If all your humor is cynical or sarcastic, you have a problem with anger and frustration.
th step: Who are you going to let set your agenda?
th step: Just bite the bullet and do it.
86. Open the Big Book to the chapter “Into Thinking”. [There isn’t one. The chapter is "Into Action."]
87. My goal is straight thinking, honesty and genuine humility.
88. When it is all about me, I am not walking forward.
89. Anything I put in front of my sobriety, I will lose.
90. How difficult it was for me to put me first.
91. Today I can carry the message. I cannot carry the drunk, but I can carry the message.
92. You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make him water ski.
93. Do I value things in front of my serenity?
94. I come to meetings to get my thinking supervised.
95. There are no luggage racks on hearses; no trailer hitches either.
96. There are two reasons people go out and come back: They don’t go to meetings and they lose their higher power.
97. Today I have to ask myself what is my motive?
98. I am not God.
99. How’s that working for you?
100. This is the easier softer way every time.
101. If no one has told you that they love you today, we do.
102. If your ass falls off, take it to a meeting.
103. If I knew it was my last drunk, I would have done it better.
104. Minnesota: Land of 1000 Treatment Centers.
105. In case of emergency go to a meeting.
106. Gratitude is an Attitude.
107. Getting well, growing up, is getting less selfish.
108. Get off the cross we need the wood.
109. Stick with the winners.
110. A drink is not enough, it will never be enough.
111. If you are new here just stay. You don’t have to go out and there is no guarantee that you will get back.
112. I bring all my problems to my sponsor and all my solutions to a meeting.
113. We are here to take care of ourselves first so we can take care of others.
114. I have friends I have not even used yet.
115. This meeting is shelter from the storm.
116. If I am not happy without something I will never be happy with it.
117. Drunks always settle for less.
118. A minutes worth of silence, however difficult, is better than two days of groveling.
119. All I can offer you is what I have gone through.
120. Live your life in such a way that people can see it is working in you.
121. You can do this all wrong and it still might work, it just hurts longer.
122. Humility is not being the center focus of everything.
123. Doing that thing which will make you ready to enhance and enable others.
124. If people tell you you weren’t that bad, who wants to get that bad?
125. We can’t walk on water but we know where the rocks are.
126. Surrender, but don’t ever give up.
127. If you put the amount of energy into AA that you put into watching TV, you just might make it.
128. You cannot think your way out of negative thinking, you have to act your way out. You cannot think your way out of depression, you have to act your way out.
129. I am on the right track when my behavior is acceptable to me.
130. You are either going to feed the good dog or feed the bad dog in your head. The one that wins is the one that you feed.
131. Do not put a question mark where God has put a period.
132. This would be a lot easier if it were a secret cult and you only learned one step at a time.
133. Life gets a whole lot easier when I don’t have to be right.
134. Most people act the way that they do for pretty good reasons (fear). You can uncover all the reasons and still act that way.
135. I can certainly tell you what humiliated means. What does it mean to be humble?
136. My first sponsor was not perfect but he had something so spectacular I wished I was him.
137. How long are you going to let the booze steal the love you should be giving to yourself, your wife or your daughter?
138. Apparently my whole life was wrong. Let’s look at today as an entirely new situation. I need to become childlike, not childish.
139. Show up, clear up, and take out the garbage.
140. God did not sober you up to drop you on your head.
141. We cannot afford resentment and self pity.
142. Practice instant forgiveness.
143. How’s it going your way? That is a terrible question for a drunk.
144. The answer is never to have a drink; I just have to trust in those promises and the guys who went before.
145. God’s will is not thinking less of my self but thinking of myself less.
146. I gotta do something different but I don’t know what it is.
147. If you are coasting you are going down hill.
148. Today I can say “I will have to think about that.” I made too many mistakes in my life responding quickly.
149. This task is going to take forever but while I am doing it I might as well not be pissed off. I will think of something else.
150. If I drink I will lose it all and the scary thing is that I won’t even care until I come to.
151. Do not drink the first drink. When you get hit by a train, it isn’t the caboose that kills you.
152. I love meetings but sometimes it is hard to grow up in public.
153. Sobering up just gets us to the starting line of life.
154. The answer to the question “why?” is the booby prize of life. Stop asking “why.”
155. Stop judging. Stop judging what God is doing, what They are doing, what you are doing. Judging gets you nowhere. If you want to be righteous, just do the next right thing.
156. It was impossible for me to care for someone else when I could not care for myself. You can’t give what you do not have.
157. The Great Question for an alcoholic is “What are you willing to do about it?”
158. My problems with you begin in me. Trouble always begins in me.
159. You become what you talk about.
160. I am not supposed to know how to do everything when I get here.
161. If you spot it you got it.
162. If it is true that “we” are smarter than “me”, then by definition normal things must be good in some way.
163. Don’t carry an emotional hangover – make peace with yourself.
164. Say hi to God for us and be good to yourself.
165. Usually a desperate urge to act is my will; a calm certainty is God’s will for me.
166. There exists more faith in honest doubt than in half the creeds we have today.
167. When I learn to love myself as God loves me then I am doing His will.
168. I try very hard to take advantage of the gifts given me by just enjoying them.
169. If I am not making progress I am going the other way.
170. What I feel is not nearly as important as what I do about it.
171. I have to treat you according to the twelve steps first, and then I can treat myself that way.
172. I am terrified that I will drink again and be miserable until I die.
173. Emotional binge = spiritual blackout.
174. Only God knows what is best for all concerned.
175. I need to discover and learn to love the parts of me that grew up with acute alcoholism.
176. It’s a beautiful day to get sober.
177. I thank God for AA and AA for my God.
178. I thought you’d dip me in chocolate and I’d be alright.
179. I think my prayer works better on my knees because I have humbled myself before God.
180. Just today, don’t compare, compete or condemn.
181. Don’t drink and don’t think.
182. It is amazing how many unappreciated geniuses you can run into.
183. What kind of person can I be to make me feel better about me today?
184. When you take on responsibility you get stronger.
185. You can put the cheerleaders skirt on all you want but the winners do the work.
186. Emotional insecurity gives us worry, anger, self pity, depression, anxiety, bitterness and frustration.
187. I can say “No.” today. “No.” is a complete sentence.
188. ABC used to stand for ashtrays brooms and chairs; any way to be of service. Service works.
189. If you are hurting, find someone else in the meeting who is hurting and sit right next to them.
190. I have a couple of mirrors at home in the form of my kids.
191. I want to change. I want to do something about myself, about my family and what I am doing. Just not drinking is not enough for me.
192. If alcohol was a person, It would be a stalker.
193. Sometimes the hard times are the good times.
194. I would rather be sober and crazy than drunk and crazy.
195. These emotions they just knock you on your ass and you just pick it up and bring it to a meeting.
196. Every single day it seems I need to be rebooted.
197. In my recovery, my wife is getting a lot better with some of her character defects.
198. It is difficult to get sober. Of course losing everything helps.
199. The monkey is off my back but the circus is still in town.
200. I am not in charge but I am entitled to my own voice and my own life.
201. Your drinker is broken and your thinker is broken.
202. I thought I was a secret but the big book tells me all about myself. I found that scary.
203. My brain does not work for me. My brain wants to kill me.
204. I needed a good 6 months of not drinking just to get judgmental.
205. All my suffering has to do with a delusion about myself.
206. I went to a CODA [Co-dependents Anonymous] and Al-anon meeting last night. I restrained myself from borrowing money.
207. It has taken me quite a while to let go of some of the things that happened to me and even longer to accept the responsibility for my part in them.
208. Sometimes I call it slowbriety.
209. I love you all and there ain’t nothin’ you can do about it.
210. I don’t just not drink one day at a time, I live one day at a time.
211. I refuse to be around anyone who does not love me today.
212. What am I not getting here has turned into what can I give to this situation.
213. Your self esteem will never be any higher than your level of self acceptance.
214. I asked my sponsor how many meetings I needed to go to and he said “just cut back on them until you get loaded.”
215. I love animals and I love TV. I think because they listen to my conversation and they don’t tell me I am wrong.
216. In the rooms of AA is the only place I feel safe inside my skin.
217. If you have to control you are out of control. Why would you try and control something if you have no problem with it?
218. Sobering up was like having to swallow the medicine and the spoon.
219. AA gave me the dignity of dealing with my own Higher Power.
220. This is an honest program for dishonest people.
221. It shocks me now that there was a time in my life when I did not want to live. Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem.
222. This is your reality despite what you might think.
223. The worst kind of ignorance is contempt prior to investigation.
224. Maybe God is the sum total of all our beliefs in God.
225. I just try and take the things that work from the meeting. I try and feed on the good.
226. I resented my ex wife who divorced me when I was as sick as I could get. I just don’t go there any more. I wasted a lot of time and a lot of years thinking about getting even.
227. Everyone is entitled to be here.
228. Today I call my ex wife my former wife to give her some respect.
229. You cannot be searching and fearless if you are being critical and judgmental.
230. How angry can you get with people who just don’t know that they have a problem?
231. It is only 10 inches from a halo to a noose.
232. Once you are a pickle you cannot become a cucumber again. Once an alcoholic, always an alcoholic. We can manage but not cure the disease.
233. Spirituality transcends religion because hell is man made.
234. When I really screwed up, my sponsor said “Wow, you must be becoming willing again.”
235. We are not out to hurt people but we do. I am glad I finally gave in.
236. The root cause of alcoholism is deeper than the craving, it is a spiritual malady.
237. I did not drink because of ————, [fill in the blank with anything you like] I am an alcoholic and that is what we do.
238. When my IQ test came back slightly above average it confirmed what I had known for years – I was a genius,
239. My Higher Power is working on my character defects, He brings them up to me all the time.
240. Be extra kind today. Everyone is struggling with something.
241. Sought, the past tense of the verb seek, is used 11 times in the first 164 pages of the Big Book.
242. You can’t begrudge a person their right to suffer.
243. Self discipline is the foundation for emotional sobriety.
244. Grown up men don’t cry. Growing men cry and learn to deal with it.
245. The great paradoxes of AA are that we surrender to win and have to give it away to keep it.
246. Your tears may be because you were emotionally frozen, now you are melting. You are entitled to them and we understand.
247. A lot of my pain left through my eyes in the form of tears.
248. All God gives us is right now.
249. When I say I want to control something I mean that I want my fears to control it.
250. Success in AA is to wake up and feel good about your day.
251. I have been here in this meeting forever and I have been blessed to be able to come.
252. When you take medication you may react quickly if you are going to have a problem with it. If it is working correctly you respond slowly, like over a day or so. AA works that way.
253. I am working to overcome the compulsion to criticize.
254. They say that this is a selfish program. Selfish and self centered in the extreme is what we were, self caring is what we are now. The furthest thing from self centeredness is caring for yourself and the next guy. The best thing I can do for you is to get and stay healthy myself.
255. Identify, don’t compare. See the similarities not the differences.
256. I love this program. Sadly, I cannot make anyone want it no matter how badly they need it.
257. A slip in AA is like falling out of bed – you weren’t in it far enough.
258. If you believe in God, if you have a higher power, why not have one that likes you?
259. Ask for the willingness to be willing to be willing…
260. I could have run my own life forever and not really have been that successful.
261. I think I should have some big insight on this but I don’t. I’m just a guy who doesn’t want to drink.
262. Courage is walking through your fears and coming out on the other side without a drink.
263. It was not my childhood dream to be here in AA.
264. The only way to rebuild my confidence and have a life was to do the steps and tell the truth.
265. We are running a spiritual kindergarten here.
266. A caterpillar needs the struggle to get out of the cocoon to be strong enough to become a butterfly. If you open the cocoon, the caterpillar will get out but it will die.
267. Maybe God is the Great Mystery or the Great Randomness.
268. All that crap in the past is just blood over the damn. It is not how people treat us, it is how we treat people regardless of how they treat us.
269. I just did not know what I did not know. I don’t know where I missed it along the road but I did miss it.
270. Fear will steal your peace.
271. You are going to go a long way in this program because you have a long way to go.
272. If you are falling out of bed, you weren’t in far enough. AA works the same way.
273. Bottom line is that it was me and the way I thought that got me into this crap in the first place. My thinking had to change.
274. What can anyone possibly do to me that I have not already done to myself.
275. When you meet difficult people, just surround them or yourselves with God’s love or angels.
276. When I got a sponsor and started the steps I started to grow.
277. I I came to the women’s meeting here on Saturday morning and they just engulfed me.
278. When I am in pain I am spiritually not connected – I am off the mark and I am alone.
279. I know today that I had an inability to process resentments, loss, and emotions in a healthy way.
280. I cannot afford to dabble in recovery today – it is a life or death proposition.
281. I told my Higher Power that he did not make me perfect. He said “No s**t.”
282. I opened a fortune cookie and it said “Go to AA.”
283. You don’t have to go to every fight you are invited to.
284. You may be right. It may be the first time ever that Martians have visited an Earthling, but you may be right.
285. Humility helps us see we have gold plated problems.
286. Go out there and try to get it right one more day, but whatever happens, don’t drink.
287. The key for me is to participate.
288. I still have the heart of a horse thief.
289. I need a Higher Power to protect me from my own mind.
290. When I got sober God gave me a conscience.
291. If I needed self esteem maybe it was because I was not doing anything esteemable.
292. You make a decision not to drink and you stand behind it.
293. I never know when I will run across the first friggin’ moron of the day.
294. Cockiness is a form of fear.
295. I’m rather proud of my humility.
296. A reasonable amount of fear and confession and doubt keeps me humble.
297. Without God and you guys I don’t have a chance.
298. Even the most brilliant mind is no defense against alcoholism. I cannot think myself sober.
299. If I do not look out for myself, I cannot look out for anyone else.
300. I cannot possibly help enough people to stop feeling less than.
301. Sometimes in AA we have to step over the bodies.
302. This is an illness that only a spiritual experience will conquer.
303. Alcoholism is a disease that hurts and kills people who don’t even have it.
304. If you are so smart, why are you so miserable?
305. My God does not like me being mean to His other kids.
306. Waking up is a bad thing for me because when I wake up I am in conscious contact with myself. I have to immediately contact my Higher Power for help.
307. Quick test for alcoholism: If a doctor took a vial of your blood and told you you were not an alcoholic, what would you do? If you said go out and drink, you are probably an alcoholic.
308. Non alcoholic beer is for non alcoholics.
309. The thing about denial is that you don’t know you are in it until you are out of it. With that knowledge comes responsibility. Do something: left foot, right foot until you get better at it.
310. Alcoholism ran rampant in my family and we pretended it did not exist. There is a scene in the movie “The Departed” where Matt Damon says “I’m Irish, I can stare at a problem for 35 years and not do anything about it”
311. My understanding of God does not have to include a God. The help I need has to come from somewhere, somewhere else, somewhere other than me. That is the important thing.
312. I was constantly restless, irritable, discontent, struggling. I did not know that it was caused by alcohol. I knew I was nuts and I knew I was an alcoholic but I just never put them together.
313. If you don’t believe in anything, believe that we believe.
314. Higher Power please help me to be available to the spirit.
315. I want to try and be kind on the outside and forgiving on the inside.
316. By the time I got to my 4
th step my sponsor said I was so dry I was a fire hazard.
317. Resentments are the acid which eats its container.
318. I had to sweep off my side of the street, to relieve myself of all that crap – ya gotta love the pain.
319. If you take the nuts out of the fruit cake you still have a fruit cake.
320. Tavern Rash =the dents and scrapes on a drunk’s car.
321. If you want to grow you have to face the truth in yourself and not run.
322. There are three kinds of business: your business, God’s business, and none of your business.
323. I need a demonstration – you guys have to show me.
324. Alcoholism is a disease of isolation.
325. There are two doors, one marked “Heaven” and the other marked “Lecture on Heaven”. People are lined up in front of each door. All the alcoholics are lined up in front of the door marked “Lecture on Heaven” because we want to know the rules, we want to be in control.
326. [From a Sponsor] “You need to get a damned job. You are lazy, and you are pathetic.
327. Gratitude today is waking up and being ok with who I am.
328. God put you people in my life; I certainly did not deserve you.
329. The cruelest lies are the ones you tell in silence and mostly to yourself.
330. I am not going to change anything by getting all worked up and ramming it through my mind a hundred times. I have to learn to just turn it over to my Higher Power.
331. Whatever works, use it.
332. Everything is subject to loss, including my life. All I really have is my perception today, right now.
333. Whatever kept you sober yesterday, do it again. Don’t do less.
334. When I am not thinking about myself I am pretty peaceful.
335. I am here because I am not all there.
336. My main fear is of becoming the drunk I was.
337. A counselor pointed out that I could substitute “won’t” for “can’t”
338. I was raised in a home where you were first or you were nothing.
339. What anyone else thinks about you is none of our business.
340. Sobriety, Sanity, Serenity.
341. If I am consistently trying to do the right thing, why should I feel guilty about anything? What more can I do?
342. Churchill – History is just one damn thing after another.
343. My life got a lot easier when I resigned as the general manager of the Northern Hemisphere.
344. You don’t get across a big hole in the ground by taking two short steps.
345. The sayings around here are clichés for a reason – they are true.
346. Negativity breeds negativity in my life.
347. Treat your wife as well as you treated your bartender.
348. I want to build relationships with myself, God, my sponsor, other alcoholics.
349. Intimacy = Into me you see.
350. Love is the ability to make decisions based on the well being of someone other than ourselves.
351. The nice thing about Gambler’s Anonymous is that you can sit in the back row and drink.
352. How is your way working? Maybe you should let someone else fly the plane for a while.
353. God put this guy in my life. He is my sponsor. Sometimes I hate him. He tells me I drank because I could not stand the reality of life. I hate when he is right.
354. When I die it would be an honor if someone said I had integrity. I always believed in faking integrity.
355. My house is empty. It is just me and the dogs and the dogs always want out.
356. Let it go.
357. AA is just one drunk talking to another drunk in the hope that they can both go another day without drinking.
358. Sober or not, life does not stop.
359. Somewhere between the age of eleven and age fifty one I lost the ability to be in the now. The only thing I can do about it is to come to a meeting and share.
360. If you don’t think you are an alcoholic, if you were in New York City on 9/11, where would you have gone?
361. Why go get drunk? Who am I going to punish, me? It is a slow, pointless agonizing death. There are much better ways to kill yourself.
362. My sponsor said that she would like to go over to my house sometime and talk about somebody else.
363. My sponsor told me I had to be nice every day so I tried to get it over with early.
364. I know the problem: I am screwed up. The solution is to learn how to do my best to love the people around me and to allow them love me.
365. Don’t go behind the wikiup. That is where the problems that you have are waiting for you.
366. Holy Batman, does God work in mysterious ways!
367. My sponsor is my best friend, a father figure, and a sponsor. I want his sobriety and his kindness in his heart.
368. Ask not what disease a person has, but what person the disease has.
369. OK, I’m going to give this God a chance.
370. In doing the steps you will have a spiritual awakening and learn enough about yourself that you will be able to pass it on to someone else.
371. When I am alone in my disease I am with someone who wants to kill me. I keep myself from the sunlight of the spirit, no one else does.
372. I had to find the grateful, loving, forgiving God. I could not accept forgiveness until I could forgive others.
373. Pray to have the obsession lifted.
374. Not even God can make the decision to sober you up. You have to make that decision yourself. Only then can you take advantage of the help we offer.
375. Making myself a victim gave me a perfect excuse to drink.
376. Life is abundant.
377. I can forgive anyone but it does not mean that I will let them back in my life. I just refuse to carry the resentment.
378. I can do nothing to change yesterday and I can only do the best I can today.
379. The reason my kids had buttons to push was that I installed them.
380. “I am your father don’t you ever talk to me that way!” “I am your son, don’t you talk that way to me either!”
381. Today I am a recovered alcoholic. Recovery too is transformational, gradual and progressive.
382. The idea of amends is to take the pain of others away. In a state of spiritual disgrace I am not making amends, I need to be truly humble.
383. In Latin “A” means without. A theist means without God, Agnostic means without knowledge.
384. I am not responsible in any way for being an alcoholic. Once I know that I am however, I am responsible for what I do about it.
385. I don’t want to resent my choices today.
386. It is humbling to admit that I did not start out in life with a first wife. I had to create one.
387. When you are self centered to the extreme you are doing damage to any relationship you have and the people in it.
388. My sponsor was not interested in my opinion of my deep seated psycho-social problems. He said “Just don’t drink.”
389. If I pick up a drink I can be happy for about an hour and then miserable for the rest of my life.
390. He went an entire year without having sex with his wife, which I call a hell of an amends.
391. Real gratitude is a heart felt feeling.
392. When you pick your sponsor, be sure he has what you want.
393. You can have a temporary sponsor or more than one sponsor. Just don’t pick one you can con.
394. Cynicism, sarcasm and criticism come from low self esteem.
395. The reason I have low self esteem is … I have low self esteem. I need to change that.
396. The best you are going to feel in a day is how you feel about yourself.
397. If you love a long shot bet, sober up.
398. I have friends I have not used yet.
399. If I continue doing what I used to do I will go back and drink.
400. I have to worry about my life and what is wrong with me. I have to work on what is wrong with me before I can help you. I have to figure out only what is the next right thing to do.
401. Fear turned inward is anger.
402. Fear is a mile wide and a mile high but only paper thin.
403. Unrealistic expectations are premeditated resentments.
404. I do much better riding shotgun than when I am driving the bus.
405. My happiness is contingent on my spiritual condition today.
406. You alone can do it, but you can not do it alone.
407. My sponsor knows more about me than I do about me.
408. You can learn from my experience, or go get your own experience.
409. When it comes to my sobriety, to doing what I need to do to stay sober, I am inflexible to vicious.
410. If you are new to AA, speak up. You are the most important person in the room.
411. You are the only person who can change your sobriety date.
412. We are all crazy sometimes. Thank god in AA we are not all crazy on the same day.
413. I would call my sponsor about some issue that I had and he would say “thanks for calling” every time. When I asked him why he said “you keep me sober.”
414. The self never heals the self. I cannot fix my self, I must have help from somewhere outside myself.
415. You can not change until you accept where you are now.
416. Wisdom is not knowledge. Wisdom is knowing what to do with knowledge.
417. If it comes down to it, save your own ass.
418. Surrender to win.
419. When I speak at a meeting there is what I plan to say, what I think I said and what I should have said.
420. “Keep coming back” was the most important thing I heard here.
421. We all come in here with wounds.
422. I am afraid of every human being on the planet. Inside I am a scared, wounded little boy. To acknowledge that is painful. Just staying present with people is an act of faith and courage.
423. It takes courage to walk in the door.
424. I am grateful for everyone who is here today participating in my sobriety.
425. I found a group of people who knew me better than I knew myself.
426. Once you are a pickle, you can not go back and be a cucumber.
427. When I can keep my head where my ass is, life is good. Right now is what God is giving me today.
428. The steps got me to where I could deal with life. Give up, clear up, clean up, and take out the garbage.
429. When I buy shoes I tell them to go to meetings.
430. I can’t afford to pay me what I am worth – the minimum wage laws won’t allow it.
431. Only our own personal stupidity is original.
432. If you got here young, try it out – you have plenty of time to get back into bitch mode.
433. Love and cherish those who still suffer.
434. If denial is not working for you, you have delusion to fall back on.
435. When I see the Big Picture it is static. It is a snapshot.
436. Just stand there and wait on an answer.
437. My mind is a little shifty yet.
438. On counseling: I’m paying this guy good money and I expect him to tell me I am unique.
439. It is natural for us to be ungrateful, we are wired into that. Don’t waste time in AA listening to people whine. Service will cure that.
440. My problems invariably began with me. Decisions I have made in my life have brought me to where I am today.
441. If I walk on eggshells or people please in a relationship there is something wrong with me. I need to look at me with a sponsor.
442. Chuck C. = discover, uncover discard.
443. Gratitude is a decision.
444. Thank you guys for giving me my dignity back which I gave away to the bottle.
445. Lord please relieve me of the bondage of self.
446. The big lie: another drink will do it.
447. I was speaking with my inner retard…
448. I am not responsible for everything, but I am the common denominator. Some people get in trouble without my help.
449. Sometimes if you just let it go your Higher Power will fix it. If you hang on too tight, He can’t.
450. Coming out of the wikiup is June Cleaver…
451. Go stand in a corner and worry your ass off and see what has changed.
452. How we get here is not very important but how we stay here is life or death.
453. What are you – God?
454. If you asked for forgiveness but did not forgive yourself you think you are better than God.
455. Slim always used to tell me that they can’t cook you and eat you.
456. Pray for mercy because if you got what you deserved, the door would be locked.
457. No man was ever shot by a woman when he was washing dishes.
458. If I keep cutting corners I will be going in circles.
459. Suffering has created people of special vision in the room.
460. I have finally given up trying to have a successful past.
461. Putting others down hurts my spirit. Pray for them and leave them alone.
462. The steps keep us from killing ourselves and the traditions keep us from killing each other,
463. Sarcasm, criticism, cynicism are all forms of fear. They make me less than in my own eyes.
464. I wonder if the angels can fly because they take themselves so lightly.
465. I am in charge of world peace and global warming and she is in charge of everything else.
466. One true friend is worth 10,000 relatives.
467. The toughest people are the most sensitive.
468. Today, a drink for me is a suicide attempt.
469. When the s**t is hitting the fan, turn the fan off.
470. Children are pure innocence and love.
471. Sponsor: That is a great problem, let me know how it works out.
472. Repetition strengthens and confirms until faith becomes natural.
473. If I put half the effort into staying sober that I put into getting drunk, the program is easy.
474. I deserve kindness as well.
475. My ego is my amigo – some of my character defects I really like.
476. If I don’t live my life differently pretty soon being sober won’t look so good to me and being drunk won’t look so bad.
477. I can turn my will and my life over to God or to fear.
478. If you are not getting what you want change what you are doing or change what you want.
479. There is an overgrown jungle in my mind. The steps are emotional landscaping.
480. Alcohol is a terrible way to kill yourself. It is slow, painful, and pointless, like clipping yourself to death with a pair of nail clippers.
481. Three frogs are sitting on a lilly pad. One frog makes a decision to jump off. How many frogs are sitting on the lilly pads now? Three.
482. You may not like everyone here but you will love everyone.
483. If you don’t dislike anyone at a meeting, you are not going to enough meetings.
484. If life were nothing but fastballs we would all be perfect. But it throws you a curve and then a slider.
485. Attitude: Bring your wife home a rose, that will screw her day up.
486. The best advice I ever got was to do the next right thing.
487. Live by principles, not by your feelings.
488. When I cannot get along with you I am judging you and that is a bad place for me. Who am I to judge what your Higher Power has created.
489. AA delivered me to the great truth which released me from the bondage of hatred and replaced it with love.
490. Some people are just difficult to love.
1. We are continually getting opportunities to grow up.
2. Today I do not have to do everything all or nothing.
3. I learned to go forward as a humble child of God.
4. A moral inventory does not help with cancer but it does with alcoholism.
5. There is a solution – gratitude.
6. We can have a powerful spiritual influence on those around us.
7. Today I am trying to be conscious of my choices, not haphazard.
8. AA has given me the ability to live a life I am proud of.
9. Not drinking for me is an acquired skill.
10. Today I have improved my out look on personal power, ambition, importance and leadership.
11. I do not drink for health reasons.
12. You deserve all the dignity and respect I can muster.
13. [To a newcomer] You never have to feel that way again.
14. AA leads us to a life that is second to none.
15. The most important thing I can tell you about me is that I have not had a beer all day.
16. When you come in new – we know you. As a matter of fact, we think more of you than you do of you. Just come along with us.
17. The thing I want is to die sober with self respect and the respect of my family.
18. Nothing in this world will make me drink except me.
19. From an old timer with the Harley outfit and tattoos: I don’t bring my oxygen tank to meetings; it messes up my image.
20. I am not truly emotionally fragile – I can stand anger and frustration and still function.
21. My anger is not toxic to others.
22. I have found a unique opportunity to get out of hell. I may not get to heaven but it is a great gig anyway.
23. I found a group of men willing to love me until I could love myself.
24. I plan to keep coming until I get a better past.
25. God chose me and made me what I have to be on a daily basis, I just have to do it.
26. Today I don’t have to buy in to the first thing I wake up thinking about.
27. Life is too short to spend it spinning your wheels; I value every day today.
28. At the end of one more day sober, I thank my Higher Power for today and everything in it.
29. Today I want to become rich, famous, and beautiful on the inside.
30. “If I had known better I would have done better.” Oprah.
31. I have a place inside me where I can go and speak with God.
32. I am a lot more sane because I know how crazy I am.
33. We no longer have to settle for less, but we need to be willing to settle for progress.
34. Come in here sober tomorrow and you will have something to be proud of.
35. If there is anything close to a silver bullet in this program it has to be the steps.
36. My higher power wants me to be a decent human being thinking of others.
37. I can have a God of my own understanding – a best friend.
38. God wants me here and as I am today.
39. I was a hopeless dope fiend and I am now a dope less hope fiend.
40. I love being sober and I love living.
41. If you let someone in when you are driving they can’t cut you off. That’s some healthy s**t, man.
42. If you go to enough meetings someone will tell your story. If you listen hard enough with your heart, we will all tell your story.
43. If I have to stop at a red light – I get to go first the next time.
44. The Grace of God is unmerited favor.
45. God is my spiritual father.
46. If we earnestly seek Him with all our hearts, he will disclose Himself to us.
47. I asked a fellow with 32 years of soberiety what step he was on and he said “step 1″.
48. Doing the right thing under the right circumstances for the right reasons.
49. I make peace with life today.
50. Today I can stop fighting and surrender. If I am not at peace with myself, what difference does the rest of it make?
51. If I am doing what I am supposed to be doing right now I am probably headed in the right direction.
52. I cannot change life but I can change how I deal with it.
53. Change is up to me and the result of the change is up to God.
54. I needed remedial kindergarten.
55. Step 5 gave me belonging, forgiveness, humility, realism, honesty about myself and relief.
56. My goal is straight thinking, honesty and genuine humility.
57. These 12 steps are the only hope I have for living today.
58. Today I can disengage emotionally from the bad stuff.
59. I hope for serenity to match calamity; to not let life carry me away emotionally. It will be OK one day at a time.
60. Together we have a chance of staying sober and living life on life’s terms.
61. Because of the steps and the God I found in these rooms I am able to be among real people.
62. Just do it 24 hours at a time. It will get better.
63. I don’t have to work to get the message; God will give me the message.
64. All the problems I have today I prayed for.
65. I did not do it perfectly but I am still here. Thank God I had good sponsors.
66. I begged God for help and He gave it to me. He doesn’t ask much of me.
67. If you are paying attention in a newcomers meeting, you can see the despair leaving people’s eyes.
68. I am a truck driver and my sponsor told me to follow this program like my headlights. If I follow my headlights down the interstate long enough I can drive clear across the country yet I will not have seen anything beyond the beam of those lights. Everything else is my higher power’s business.
69. For me, this was the last stop on the trolley line. Here is where I found hope for the hopeless.
70. If no one has told you that they love you today, we love you today.
71. Most of the time I don‘t know what God’s will for me is. I usually do know what the wrong thing to do is and I can usually not do it.
72. Keep coming back and don’t drink between meetings and one of these days your mind will show up.
73. I believe in the power of this group and the power of the love we share.
74. We absolutely insist on enjoying life…what an order I can’t go through with it!
75. I can tell myself that I am afraid but I am ready and my Higher Power will walk with me.
76. I don’t know if Johnny Cash could walk the line but I can do it today with your help.
77. I have not had my nose broken since I got sober.
78. I feel like Mother nature or something because everything is so beautiful sober.
79. If it is true that “we” are smarter than “me”, then by definition normal things must be good in some way.
80. Happy, joyous and free – yes we are talking to you.
81. It is OK to stop now; you have all the answers you can handle. Just relax and enjoy life.
82. I am the creation, not the Creator.
83. Today I will let my heart speak; God meets me where I am.
84. If I did not have the 10
th step my emotions would not leave me alone.
85. Serenity is not absence of a storm but peace within it.
86. I am sober today by the grace of a loving and healing God.
87. Today I try and settle for just a little less than my romantic dreams made me think I should have.
88. Every day I am sober I set a new record.
89. Today I get up and walk into the arms of God and everything is OK.
90. Today I can be just another bozo on the bus.
91. I get answers here to questions I did not even know I was asking.
92. I was not thinking about drinking anymore, I was thinking about getting well.
93. When one person changes it throws off the whole dance.
94. What you do with your alcoholism is you grab it right by the shoulders, look it right in the face and then let it go.
95. I thought the craving would never stop but it did.
96. You get your strength and your love from the people in the rooms until you become stronger and can learn to love yourself.
97. This program rocks!
98. You just keep coming back and keep coming back and keep coming back and one day the obsession is gone.
99. You are not alone.
100. This is as high as I have ever been in this world – living healthy.
101. He [the sober alcoholic] is the greatest joy of all my children.
102. It [your answer] is in the book. [the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous]
103. Thank God you people accepted me as I was long before I could accept me as I am.
104. Thanks for being my family until I could earn my own family back.
105. Thank god we don’t get what we deserve. I came here for mercy, not justice.
106. I have been given something which allows me to keep coming back.
107. I had my grandchildren over my house for the first time in twelve years.
108. We walk the face of the earth as an inspiration to others.
109. God is my gig.
110. Each day for a week, write down 6 good things that happened to you that day.
111. My sponsor suggested that I do 5 things every day. Get on my knees and ask God as I understand Him for help. Go to a meeting. Read from the Big Book or the 12&12. Talk to another alcoholic. Get on my knees and thank God as I understand Him for the day. Somehow the craving was removed.
112. To judge people is wrong. Especially with my family I can love them when I feel like judging them. They can push my buttons because they installed them. Today I can let go of all that and leave it in the past.
113. I have gained no power over alcohol in all this time – I have just accepted the gift of sobriety.
114. God won’t give you more than you can handle but it might not feel that way right now.
115. I learned how to open up and not isolate.
116. Allow the God in us to get in you.
117. Oh my God! I am living my dream!
118. I was blessed. I thought I was lower than whale s**t. God took pity on me and I sobered up.
119. My friend said “Wow, you look great, are you in love?” “No, I’m just really frippin’ sober”
120. The fruit of my prayer and meditation is emotional stability.
121. We are not the damned, we are the blessed.
122. Sometimes we get visits from angels to help us set our life in order.
123. The men on the phone list are willing to invest their lives in yours.
124. Turning it over to your Higher Power is like a Chinese finger lock. You gotta let go. You’ll never get out of it if you don’t take the pressure off. AA helps take the pressure off.
125. I’m working for God.
126. The miracle is that you are not thinking about drinking.
127. That newcomer is a lot like the old guy I used to know.
128. I was not sad, really, I just had a lack of joy. The only thing I found that helped was the love in these rooms.
129. We can and do stay sober under all conditions. Protect your serenity and your sobriety will follow. Stay grateful.
130. I don’t know if alcoholics anonymous saved my life but what it has done is to give me a life worth saving.
131. How did I stop drinking? I have no idea. I somehow started to do something right. I began to believe you guys.
132. Unaided, my self tells me that I am worthless. That is a lie.
133. Even if you broke it, we fix it.
134. My Higher Power is the only true security I have. Not once has He let me down.
135. I have the problem and God has the solution.
136. After I did my fourth step (a moral inventory) I knew I did not have to be afraid of anything else in AA.
137. In the fourth step we gain perspective on ourselves. This perspective leads to humility. Humility gives us confidence and a path with meaning.
138. Going out in the world and doing it despite the what ifs, despite the fears etc. makes me stronger.
139. If I don’t fit in I don’t have to make it work – I can do something else.
140. I have character defects but I don’t have to hang on to them. I can let them go.
141. This too will pass. It says in the Bible 43 times “… and it came to pass…” but it never does say “…and it came to stay…”
142. I’m happier today than three Mexicans with legal papers.
143. The fruit of prayer and meditation is emotional stability.
144. I have done the best I can today knowing I can do better.
145. You were born with value. You are God’s kid.
146. Higher Power please make me right sized today.
147. People in AA did not tell me what was wrong with me, I knew that. They told me what worked.
148. The first idea that worked for me was watching you guys.
149. Today I can just say “No” without a reason. Guilt is optional.
150. The 12 steps of AA will help make reality your friend.
151. I was very religious in high school and in 17 years in a convent. I did a lot of praying but I do not know if I ever had a real contact with God. Today I look at Him and He looks at me.
152. God, you are the Big Guy, I am the little guy. You do the impossible, I do the possible.
153. Whatever you came here with, you have to deal with. It will be alright.
154. I was born with a God in my life and alcohol separated me from Him. AA reconnected me.
155. The pain that got me here was a gift, not a punishment.
156. I got sober realizing I had been sentenced to live. Thank God and AA for that.
157. The 4
th and 5th steps, the things I dreaded the most I grew the most from doing.
158. Today I can create wellness for myself.
159. My sponsor said “Look in the mirror, honey, you’ve changed.”
160. There are three kinds of business: your business, God’s business, and none of your business.
161. This year we had all the bedrooms full, all the couches full, kids sleeping on the floor and five dogs in the garage. It was the best Christmas ever and it would never have been possible if I had not gotten sober.
162. The people in AA kept reaching out to me and reaching out to me and their love finally wore me down.
163. I don’t cry gracefully but it is ok to be emotional.
164. One of the most freeing things about recovery is that my past (all those things I was ashamed of) could be an asset, and could help someone else feel that they belong.
165. Thank God we don’t have to believe in a Higher Power. You don’t need to believe anything to be in AA. All you need is a desire to stop drinking.
166. Powerlessness is healing. Let Go and Let God. You did not cause it, you can’t cure it and you can’t control it.
167. I assumed that everyone else felt the craving for alcohol the same way that I felt it. I thought that they were somehow able to manage or resist better than I could. I wanted to know their secret. This was not true. I was just different from those people in the way my mind and body responded to alcohol. That was the secret.
168. I thought that you had to be old to be an alcoholic but I had to slam a tall boy just to get to work.
169. A counselor pointed out that I could substitute “won’t” for “can’t”
170. I am a loser in a group of losers. We lost the fight, we lost the booze, and we lost the misery…
171. When you yield to God and accept that your life is unmanageable by you. You can move on from there.
172. I am very grateful to be a drunk because I cannot live out there in the world without these steps.
173. I believed you guys long before I believed in any god.
174. If at the end of a day all you can do is thank God you did not have a drink, that is enough.
175. Doing the steps cleared away those things which were blocking me from God.
176. The God I came in here with would get me drunk today. Every time I go through the book I see more because I have grown.
177. We are no longer lost, frightened and purposeless. This is where the hope is, this is where the love is.
178. God did not sober me up to drop me on my head. This is not a test of some kind.
179. Thank God we don’t have to go through this s**t by ourselves.
180. Thank God I did not lose my sense of humor, because I lost everything else. I can still laugh and sometimes at myself.
181. Do whatever it takes – a phone call to a stranger, 3 meetings a day, a treatment center, and stand on your head. Get through it and don’t drink. It will get better.
182. I read the prayer of St. Francis and chuckled. “Seek to love rather than to be loved…” Who can be like that? Who can live up to that standard, not me. The answer is that we can. My AA group can on a given day, at a given moment and I can be a part of that.
183. You can cue on the problem as long as you want, you can make yourself as miserable as long as you want but there is another way.
184. God’s will for me is to be clean, sober, happy, joyous and free and to be of service to others.
185. At home I would like to respond in a loving and spiritual manner. By forgiving myself I have begun the process.
186. I did my fifth step and left that place a different person. The 5
th step forgiveness gave me a fighting chance. I felt some relief.
187. Psychic pain is not my friend today and today I have something to do about that.
188. You can’t hurt me with the stuff in my past that I have cleaned up. I behaved badly but when I worked the steps with my sponsor I was able to forgive myself.
189. If someone wants to live the old anger over and over and over, I don’t have to.
190. I don’t have to react to the world the way I used to – always on the alert.
191. It doesn’t make any difference if the glass is half full or half empty; it is not my glass anymore.
192. We don’t care who you are, where you came from, what you did, why you are here. Do you have a desire to stop drinking? Then you are one of us, you are welcome.
193. Of all the blessings I have gotten from sobriety, the one it all hinges on is hope.
194. I found a new God of my understanding in these rooms.
195. You are not alone.
196. If I want to thank God, I should enjoy life and help others to enjoy life.
197. If you think you are not worthy, you are insane.
198. My husband turned to me and said “It is so nice to have you back.”
199. I am worth saving. I am worth being here and having a good life.
200. The Traditions of AA keep crazy people sane in large groups.
201. My will not Thine be done.
202. Oh God, just hold me in the palm of Your hand.
203. Negativity breeds negativity. I have surrounded myself with more positive people today.
204. God’s plan for me is the very best plan for me although I cannot see that immediately. His will, not my will, starts to remove the fear. His plan for me is perfect for me.
205. God is going to have His way anyway. You might as well just surrender as fast as you can and accept His will.
206. I am sober today. God did it.
207. Somehow, some way, one alcoholic talking to another alcoholic works.
208. I come here to AA to be spiritually fed.
209. I may go lots of places today but I will go to one place where I feel like I belong – a meeting.
210. The truth will set you free.
211. No one is too stupid to get sober – most of us are too smart.
212. I don’t have to lie to day and that alone makes me a much better person.
213. You never have to feel that way again.
214. I don’t have to believe in AA, I can see it work.
215. Keep coming back, we need you.
216. I can’t, we can.
217. I found the courage of small victories – go to a meeting, speak when I can, get up and do the first thing, make one more day, etc.
218. The same God that is taking care of you is taking care of me.
219. God gives us a good life, the ability to cope and peace of mind.
220. The gift that I received when I could finally hear was you.
221. Today I can refuse to select the comfortable especially when it is less than. I can be open and honest instead of cool and closed off and protective and jealous and angry.
222. If you stick around you will become a square and you will enjoy it.
223. We are always hoping people. We hope we get another drink. We can change our sense of hope.
224. Every day is a gift exchange – you get what you give.
225. The reason I did not like women was that I was not a trustworthy woman. When I became more loving, trusting and caring I could let you in.
226. You make God sound so cool.
227. Today I have problems of abundance.
228. I get the effect out of the steps that I used to get out of alcohol – relief. I also get purpose and direction in my life.
229. So far in life I am accompanied by the Creator.
230. We insist on enjoying life.
231. I can be a participant in my own life today.
232. I am grateful today that when I woke up I was not angry that I woke up.
233. A flashback is just God reminding you how much He has forgiven you. Accept God’s grace.
234. The glass is more than half full if you let it be.
235. Today I refuse to worry and I refuse to regret.
236. All I have to do today is to try and live in my higher power’s will.
237. I ask forgiveness for my hatred. Thank you god for forgiving me.
238. I am struggling with acceptance.
239. I do a one minute prayer every hour.
240. It is not change that is hard, it is the resistance to change that is hard.
241. “No, no, no, you don’t understand – I love her!” I created my own pain. The solution was to just do the drill. Don’t drink, go to meetings, talk with my sponsor, ask for help and thank my Higher Power at night.
242. Today I can live in the light, bringing my best to the relationships that I have.
243. Some of the best people in the world hang out in AA meetings.
244. It is kinda hard to hate yourself when you feel all the love in these rooms.
245. Pray for mercy because if you got what you deserved, the door would be locked.
246. We are formulating a template you will use in all your relationships for the rest of your life.
247. Savor the moment.
248. Failing is not trying.
249. I just don’t drink anymore.
250. I did not have alcoholism when I got here.
251. Action, action, action, practice, practice, practice.
252. I believed that God had abandoned me and therefore AA would not work for me but it did. I found my own personal higher power and was restored to hope.
253. The most similar thing we all have is our insides. I don’t have to like the way you put it out to know it is in there.
254. I have a fortune I friendships, courage, self assurance, and an honest appraisal of my own abilities.
255. I try to accomplish the little daily tasks that are an integral part of living fully.
256. Get on your knees to humble yourself but when you pray look up because you have looked down too long.
257. I would like to stay in a state of gratitude so deep that I have no time to be cynical.
258. I am the result of the way I reacted to what happened to me as a child, I can choose to change that reaction now.
259. I can be free of guilt and the need for self justification.
260. Of all the things unworthy that I have done, I am honored that God has chosen me to save.
261. I have two lives – I love my AA life and I have an uncomfortable social life.
262. I have to tell myself in the morning – nice to see you.
263. Do the whole program.
264. How I feel is dependent on what I allow to go through my mind. If I am negative or angry my mind needs a reset. I need to change the thinking which got me here.
265. Change means that I care about you once in a while now.
266. Sponsor: Ask what changes your family would like to see and write them down.
267. For the first time in my life I am a free man.
268. This year has been a bitch for me and I am alright, I am sitting here sober.
269. The Big Book was written by newcomers.
270. Get up, dress up, show up. It will be all right.
271. Here we help people who have a problem with alcohol find a way to live life well without drinking.
272. Come along with us – it will be all right.
273. … and if it gets any worse I may actually call my sponsor.
274. Today I am teachable, that is how much humility I have gained.
275. Can we solve this problem today? Right now? Can we move in the right direction? Can we find help? Can we let go of it?
276. Not going to meetings is a misdemeanor, the more I miss the meaner I get.
277. Live by principles, not by your feelings.
278. Amor omnia vincit – love conquers all.