Thursday, February 28, 2008

Strong urge, first thought, desire for a KFC

I made a decision
not to eat meat
day a time
I haven't

Tonight on the way home from uni I had a
Strong urge, first thought, desire for a KFC
when I know I dont really want one
rational thought says nah
insane then why does it seem like a good idea?
I had not eaten regularly nor enough today
So I ate something healthy
as soon as was reasonably possible after the thought

Early recovery its suggested to carry around
sweets, chocolate something to eat when confronted
with that thought

Hungry - if hungry eat
Angry - pray for them, retraint of tongue, call another alky
Lonely - Go to a meeting, call up an alky, do something useful
Tired - Lay down, take a nap, go to bed

When one or more of HALT is not taken care of
my perception changes
at times irrational
insane thoughts
anyone or more and others could crop up

Prevention is easier than cure
Take care of your HALT
and it takes care of my mind

If I had gone for a KFC
This would have been acting out - dishonest
because my heart does not want one
my head did!
I would have really enjoyed it
I know it
I love them
BUT tomorrow I would have been really baffled
and regret it
remorse... have to start again etc
and know that more than likely
if I had eaten
and not gone to bed at 5.30am last night
after studying

Hungry and Tired HALT
see HALT is a great tool to apply
Another solution!

Practice this principle on thinking about drinking
Dont listen to your first thought
Pick up the phone before you pick up a drink
Think Think Think
Its the first drink not the 5th or the 6th

Heres some AA points to
consider now that you've stopped drinking (in this example eating KFC's)
and if I have tried all these
I could consider these things to
Consider if confronted with the urge (thought) to drink or for me today eat a KFC
before you pick that drink up OR ACT OUT DISHONESTLY IN ANY WAY
Going against Gods will, your new way of living
the life you are attempting to create
the changes you are trying to live by
how ever you want to describe it

I suggest they are useful to consider AND DO
at first thought not waiting til the
urge or the 5th or 6th thought
AND IT WORKS on other obsessions and insane thoughts
like eating a KFC when hae stopped eating meat
and want to stay stopped!!

....if our friend never took the first drink, thereby setting the terrible cycle in motion. Therefore, the main problem of the alcoholic centers in his mind, rather than in his body. If you ask him why he started on that last bender, the chances are he will offer you any one of a hundred alibis. Sometimes these excuses have a certain plausibility, but none of them really makes sense in the light of the havoc an alcoholic´s drinking bout creates.P23

Dont pick up that first....
It will be great to wake up tomorrow
Not having drunk alcohol or eaten a KFC
Grateful again

yes I need to take care with my sleep
its very unmanageable
See I am not perfect, no saint
its one of those areas
I am hanging on to
for some unknown reason
that my head and self will only know!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

One drink a week? How and why do/would you do that then?

Despite all we can say, many who are real alcoholics are not going to believe they are in that class. By every form of self-deception and experimentation, they will try to prove themselves exceptions to the rule, therefore nonalcoholic. If anyone who is showing inability to control his drinking can do the right-about-face and drink like a gentleman, our hats are off to him. Heaven knows, we have tried hard enough and long enough to drink like other people! P31

Again in my job, I process some applications
where one of the questions is around a persons alcohol consumption

Here's one I got given to action
The answer to Question 3 is One
And the Answer to Question 4 is No

Q3. What is your average weekly consumption of alcohol in units?
(A unit of alcohol is equivalent to half a pint of beer, lager or cider, one standard glass of wine or a single measure of spirits)
Q4. In the last 5 years has your average alcohol consumption ever been higher than your current average?

no read it again!
did you laugh?
Did you ask yourself why only one a WEEK?
Did you say whats the point of having one a WEEK?
I dont accept normal drinkers drinkers!
Nor do I understand them

I will pray for them!

Average 1 a week

I checked with someone nearby
They saw nothing funny in it
so I shut up!
and carried on processing it

Greatful non drinking alcoholic
I know one is not enough for me
Thinking about it
It never was

God bless them normal drinkers

We have tried every imaginable remedy. In some instances there has been brief recovery, followed always by a still worse relapse. Physicians who are familiar with alcoholism agree there is no such thing a making a normal drinker out of an alcoholic. Science may one day accomplish this, but it hasn´t done so yet. P31

They really dont know
what terrible consequences they are missing!?

well this person may
in her job, she more than likely sees the consequences
of the first drink
oh to well on a Friday and Saturday evening

FOR MOST normal folks, drinking means conviviality, companionship and colorful imagination. It means release from care, boredom and worry. It is joyous intimacy with friends and a feeling that life is good. But not so with us.... P151

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Gods time not mine - anylengths in the workplace for 4 years - the results are outstanding!

I post this not to show you how good I am
its to show you it worked when I worked it
it didnt when I wasnt
in the workplace

4 years ago
6-9 months away from a drink
struggling to grasp step 1
hanging on by my finger nails
I was on disciplinary at work
speaking to unions
in discussions with HR, Managers
and couldnt manage to do even the simplest thing
like stay awake at work
washing machine head, which would NOT shut up
constatntly distracted
no attention span
no discipline
relying on others to help me
no imagination
no a colleague amongts colleagues
not a worker amonsgt workers
a drain on the company
1 hours work in an 8 hours day
a dishonest days work
not through lack of effort or will power
will power and effort was not enough
I was Deadwood basically
A liability
I was told they needed to get rid
of those that were a drain on the company
4 weeks to try and meet some development areas...
acheivable? yes
after 2 weeks it was obvious to me I couldnt

I went and surrended
I am not messing around,
I am not very well
I cant do my job
I have lots of experience
is there anything else you can give me to do
This is a very precarious position to be in
when your companies being sold
all the deadwood are being edged out and I was one of that wood
You may have to take a pay cut

I am telling you
Anylengths is as you see on this area
a marathon not a sprint
no quick fixes
faith (trust the process)
Turning up (Go to a meeting)
Keep turning up (Keep coming back)
Day at a time
Cinch by the inch Hard by the yard
Pray to be shown the next right thing
Do the next right thing
Just keep turning up until they ask you not to
Put in the footwork.. let go of the outcome
God does for us what we cant do for ourselves
trust the process

God gave me a few skills
I knew I had a few, but they didnt show themselves

At the time I had a VERY patient & tolerent sponsor
who gave me very direct instructions
minute, hour, day, night by night
my relentless questions
my relentless fear
were met with strength and experience anylengths back
her faith in the steps and practicing these principles
is massive
she had faith in something
I had faith in this something she had
even though I had no idea what it was (blind faith)
I followed as best I could
to the enth degree
it all made sense
and it was manageable
small steps
those early tools still work and keep on working
Sponsorship really is Love, tolerence & gratitude in action
I am Very Very grateful
Thank you

2007 I reached a standard
I have never reached before
NO development areas by the company
1 development area for me to work on (my choice)
All they ask me to do
is to keep doing what I am doing
Keep on Keeping on

So God, Sponsor and fellowship
and Anylengths
You did this, I wanted it
We did this!
Thank you

This is a review of my performance 2007
They wrote this

Johno is a very competent and self disciplined individual.

She goes over and above her level of service agreements to her advisers to ensure a smooth transaction of business. She aids client retention by encouraging client contact by way ....

Johno has received excellent feedback from her advisers who commend her for her hard work and commitment to them and their clients. They recognise her professional approach to her role and with a happy working relationship, Johno is rarely away from the office.

Johno has become a great team player, always offering assistance to her colleagues and RSM (Manager). She has really settled into the team and will put herself out to help others.

She has committed herself to a university degree outside of the business which she is enjoying and finding a good challenge.

One area Johno wishes to change and streamline is her working hours. Although her current hours were agreed at the outset of her employment and are not an issue under discussion or needing development from a business point of view, it is an area she wishes to look at herself in 2008.

Johno should be really proud of her achievements and is an asset to the team.

This is for real!!! and yes I am very proud
proud to bear witness to those I may help!
The only bit I have written, is in italics
why? its my choice development
because I couldnt find anything in my
job description or generally that I needed to improve on
and neither could they
What the italics is basically saying is I would like
to try and start work at 9am instead of 9-9.30
even though flexi is fine by them
personally its those small victories that make such
a difference to us alkies!
So my goal for 2008
To maintain the high standard I have been
and to make it in once a week at 9am or before!

I no longer do the job I was on disciplinary for
I do a job somepeople have looked down on
as a lesser job than what I did
For me I do an honest days work
I love what I do
which is 4th Dimension stuff
oh yeh!

I dont know what the HR guy will think
if he even remembers when he reads this review
he was the HR at my last company who
was having disciplinary conversations
He is also now at my new company!

Do you know how grateful I am?
More than words can say

Thank you God
Your Will is Amazing

Every day is a day when we must carry the vision of God’s will into all of our activities. “How can I best serve Thee-Thy will (not mine) be done.” These are thoughts which must go with us constantly. We can exercise our will power along this line all we wish. It is the proper use of the will.p85

Monday, February 25, 2008

Full of it - High SpirIT, Holy SpirIT, Fellowship of the SpirIT, what is it ? I dunno but I like IT

Is such an amazing thing
I feel on fire (for you clearly!)
physically I am NOT on top form
Doing the basics
Keeping on keeping on
Spiritually fit

Talking to newcomer, being a fellow within a great fellowship
Being there for a friend amongst friends
Being a worker amongst workers
Asking for help myself in the right places
A good day really

I have eaten
it hasnt all gone my way today
I havent taken it as a deliberate attempt to sabotage
the peace I have
I haven been tempted to
I did start off on the wrong foot with my colleague
but again shut my mouth... restraint of tongue
she did the same
and it passed
see I know that its not all about me
other people get tired and irritable aswell
We both thawed out just before lunch and laughed
sense of humour returned
passed that laughter on
we get to keep what we have by giving it away
that means humour too

If someone has made you smile today
Its a gift to pass on at the earliest time possible
well thats my story and I'm sticking to it!!
Its what happened today anyway @)

Also realised that its not my job to jump in
and save people like I want to
or for them to save me either
sometimes we have to feel some pain and fear
and grind not because we want to, just because
sometimes it comes with living life instead of hiding
under or inside the sofa
and this is at times what anylengths feels like
having to do it day after day
an anylengths not of our choosing
or not what we are used to
and not always leading to the results we would have liked
BUT DOING IT ANYWAY cos it is the next right thing
AND getting up again and turning up to give it another go tomorrow
and see it through, try the tools out,
test them out, on the hard stuff
this IS where you see how REALLY good these tools are
its all practicing
and possibly you get love and feel the joy when as and when it passes
or just the relief even!
and look back and think
Blimey God if we can get through this
then anythings possible!

Anylengths is not allowing self will to run riot
Anylengths is facing fear
Anylengths is doing what we have to do no matter what
on any given day
Anylengths is also knowing when to stop and lay down
given your current health etc etc

Soo I am going to stop now
I am well on track
knackered and wondering exactly
how I am going to keep working and do this degree
I am not doubting the way forward study wise
Its the way forward
Its the rest of my "life"
what am I to do?

God please show me how to do this
and what to do
Cos I am beginning to wonder myself
the decisions I am contemplating
you know what they are...
what am I to do?
please show me
I dont know whats absurd and what isnt here
they all seem common sense to me AT THE MOMENT!
Give me some direction please
She said on her knees humbly

God bless everyone I have a resentment for
In private I will name them individually
God please grant me some patience, pity and tolerence for x
that I would cheerfully grant a sick friend
When x offends me
God Please remind me, he/she is a sick man/woman
God save me from being angry, thy will be done

God Please help me NOT to retaliate
I would NOT treat sick people this way
God Please grant me restraint of tongue and pen and email

God Please remove my fear around (whatever/whoever) it is
and direct my attention to what you would have me be

God please remove my defects of character... name them!

ok of to do prayers and inventory

For those going through it at the moment
The darkest hours is before the dawn ALWAYS!
sometimes that dark hour goes on for longer than 60 minutes
but the dawn always breaks eventually

Dont quit before the miracle
Minute by minute
hour by hour
morning then afternoon and then the evening
Cinch by the inch, hard by the yard
Easy does it
But Just 'uckin do it

Good night

Thank you God
Another sober day
with no desire to drink
and a big desire for life
what you got on for me tomorrow big Guy?

IT is Love
and Love is
Trudging this road in Unity
Unity is Together
Together is in Fellowship

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Saw this and fell off my chair laughing

I want that natural cat high ... bring it on!!

1.10min & 1.20min and 2.40min onwards
just cracked me up

2.02mins is exactly what its like when
I embarked on my step 4
and at times when sit down and attempt
to continue to take a fearless and moral inventory
facing myself at times appears to be terrifying
to the world is just NOT

0.04mins putting up my best fight and being knocked to
my knees with one cool sponsor blow

I think at times I spend many an hour
laying horizontal
and running round the edge of a round rug
or is it a giant pizza base?
and dont realise how damn funny it is
to those observing
its another dimension dudes
the 4th ...
1.10mins the above vid

Infact I relate to most of this video
in some shape or form
running after bears
taking a run at the wall
hurling myself at the wall
hiding under the sofa
falling in the water
escaping what seems the inescapable
having the life frightened out of me
standing my ground
face in the porridge, with a "leave me alone look that would kill"
all loved up with a baby
jumping around completely attention seeking
taking a run, taking a walk and falling down a hole
trying to run and jump prematurely and falling down
1.20mins ballet dancing on my front paws...
jumping an somersaulting for joy just because I can!

Happy Saturday
Huge gratitude to share later
in a study break
the best is yet to come

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Turned a corner... keep on keeping on, inspite of the light appearing

I have turned a corner
Stayed up last night
trying to sit down and do an assessment
for this evening
at 1am I finally got a grip and answered a question!
I had to sooo keep asking for my attention
to be returned back to whats in front of me
over and over again!
3.40am I turned off the computer
3/4 assessment done
brain say... no more tonight
let go of the outcome
I dont know whether I slept
or just laid down and faked it
alarm went off
went to work
suddenly its very busy
I rose to the occasion
strange that
work is effortless and I love it when its a full day!
its true
and at lunch did another bit of the assessment
at 5pm - 5.30pm some more
in fact I finished every question
then Uni - took the assessment 6-7
and a lecture 7-9
am I insane?
nah just doing my best
and making the most of opportunity when it comes
for me It came at about 1am last night
suddenly felt a shift
and I milked it for a few hours
keeping on keeping on
No idea how the assessment went
not marked yet
Now to prepare for the next one

What shifted?
Fear or just a moment of clarity, sanity?
Suddenly I read the instructions
The lecturers instructions
of what I am meant to do
and tried the first question
and it suddenly made sense
at that moment
what was unclear, suddenly became clear!
makes sense to me

Now I just have to apply it again
to the next assessment next week
and to the other module
Thank God for that

The fact is that most alcoholics, for reasons yet obscure, have lost the power of choice in drink. Our so called will power becomes practically nonexistent. We are unable, at certain times, to bring into our consciousness with sufficient force the memory of the suffering and humiliation of even a week or a month ago. We are without defense against the first drink.P24

Why do I think this is relevent to me for the last 24hours?

For reasons yet obscure
I am unable to control how and when
I am at my best studying
I have lost control (if I ever had any power to control)
I am unable, at certain times
to... study even when the consequences
of not studying are so great
ie loss of marks, hurt pride, humiliation...
punctured ego
I am without defense of when this balking will come
around taking and processing new information
in studies

This is where step 2
I have faith that if I keep on
dont quit
turn up
follow suggestions
even when its not as I would like
wait, let go, try again and again
at somepoint sanity will return
This is anylengths

If I quit when its tough
If I dont open up to my fellows
last night and say
Its really hard and I hit a wall
to my sponsor and say I dont know what to do
follow her suggestions
even when it goes against what I thought was best
even when I told her I wasnt going to do what she suggested
which was step 11 work
I did it anyway!
what the Frik to I know really
if I dont do all this
I retreat into isolation
and I quit before the miracle

See it works
I am coming out of this darkness into the light
I am not saying darkness over
just saying
its all starting to fit again
instead of grind

Right I need to go and wash up
my kitchen is a a mess
as a result of me cooking up
good nutritious food
and not being bothered to wash up after
oh the joys of being a student!

What else happened
I got a 12 step call
and someone called me up and asked me to be their sponsor...
See I have no idea
whats going to happen next
and where Gods work will come from
I thought I needed to go to more meetings
to work with newcomers
apparantly NOT ALWAYS!
God often provided for me what I thought
I should be doing for myself
but had no idea how to fit it all in!
Let Go Let God

I have another review at work tomorrow
does it ever end?
do I want it to?

Good night
pray for more willingness

anylengths means anylengths

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Happy Birthday Mum 1944 - 2006

Todays been an odd one
I have tried to keep it real
and yet not overanalyse!

How do I feel?
Mentally alert
Emotionally Floundering
Physically weak and cough cold
Spiritually strong

I received texts from family
I felt their love for my mum
through their texts about
flowers they had bought
that they were visiting where she is scattered
and that they are thinking about her

I went to buy flowers, but felt fake
I thought about going to a church, and wondered why?
I wondered what I was supposed to do today?
I have absolutely no idea
So I did nothing
cried, let what ever came came
which wasnt much as you see
I did be in touch with others
and let them be themselves
my brother misses her terribly

What do I feel
I really dont know
I cant create a feeling
have I
feelings of hate ? no
feelings of dislike? no
feelings of let down ? no
feelings of abandonment ? no
feelings of anything negative towards her? no

ok then
who am I to say what I am feeling is not love?
who am I to say what degrees and what guise Love comes in?
who am I to say what I feel is not Love

Mum I love you
but I dont miss you
for the right reasons
so I try and fight the Love
try and justify the no Love
No missing her for unselfish reasons, therefore no love allowed
I can see I have been making my own rules up here
another old idea...
needs work:)

its not negative but sometimes it feels like it
to me its a part of the healing process
healing from a loss
in this instance a loss of a mother
grief process I experienced after a change in behaviour
for instance too, same principle, different thing

I am sure theres more
But I know only a little
more exploration required
in Gods time

Dear Mum
When I think of you today
I think of pink roses like in the picture
your favourite
With a wonderful fragrance
That only a rose can give
Pure, fresh, fragrant, like no other
I love pink roses nowadays, this pink
like this one, because you do
Happy Birthday
I hope you had good one
and please stop by "our kids" house
and give him a kiss while he's sleeping
he misses his mummy
and then come by mine and give me
some mummy love too
see ya

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

And acceptance is the answer.....

God said
Give yourself a break
It is exactly the way its meant to be
I am human
Emotion, tears, acceptance, sadness, joy
all ok

Only a robot would not FEEL anything
I am human
accept it
Its not all about friends
theres other things I am feeling too
around this time of year
much as I would like to say I don't
I do feel, and its normal I hear

Regarding friendship
I have friends
who love me
who I love
care about me
who I care about
push me
let me push them
pull me
let me pull them
lift me
are lifted by me
lean on me
let me lean on them
trust me
I trust them

Unconditional Love
is being able to give aswell as receive
"All people will let me down"
but thats no excuse to not make friends
"Let me down" is beginning to feel like an innapropriate phrase
under the current changes
I dont feel let down
by anyone
in fact I feel
your experience, strength and hope and Love
I feel lifted up by compassion, empathy
understanding, I am not alone, special or different

so its progress for me that nowadays
I don't over ask of friends/fellows/colleagues/family?
yes it is
huge progress

God said
you lowered your expectations Johno
stopped putting people on pedestals
expectations lead to disappointment
when there are no expectations
there will be no disappointment
people do not always let you down

Yeh I see that now, I agree

another old idea I suppose to let go of
"people will always let me down"
hand it over to room 101

there you go, so theres some progress
isnt it Johno?


and johno...
regarding making and maintaining friendships
don't stop
Get in there!
It gets better


ps thank you for your comments & conversations
I feel loved, but not pitied
Gratitude shines today :)

A conversation with my sponsor about jesus
becoming a Christian, Christians generally
my progress and my fear around this subject
and around my mother at the moment
has opened me up abit more today
with colleagues about my mum, friends
with tears
hey! nobody drowned from over crying
or drowning in their own snot?

later the lyric "Let me inside you" came over me
I racked my brains to know what song it came from
and its this

Hymn to her
The Pretenders

God what ARE YOU trying to tell me?
make it clear?

Yeh I hear you!
You be my mother when everythings gone!

I listen to you and I want some more
I listen to you and I want some more

Somethings change some stay the same

Whatever, Jesus Christ I try so hard to be open
You aint in there yet
but I know if your meant to get in
you will
and its ok

But i wont do it just to people please
I will do anything for love
But I wont do that, oh no, I wont do that

Oh my God
Music, God you know the way to this womans heart!
you Bleeder
Will you cater to every fantasy I got?
Will ya hose me down with holy water--if I get to hot--?
Will ya take me to places I've never known?
God just sat on the edge of his big chair
there swinging his legs smirking

and quietly said... i can do that

I have added to this post about 5 times now
in the last 3 hours
I hope its done...
but what do I know?


Monday, February 18, 2008

I dont know whats happening, but i know it will all be ok

I am trying to control
my studies
my eating
my sleeping
my physical health
my everything really

the result
I cant get a grip
and I am physically sick
and have been for a few days

SO I have no control!

Much as I like to think that
if I do all the right things
I know its impossible
to do everything
I have and do try
I have too much to do
and I am slowly letting go
and trying to get back to basics
real basics

I feel like I am chasing my tail
but not acheiving anything
and i am afraid

Yes I have been here
over and over and over

and just because
I think that
because I know what the problem is...
it will be solved and go away immediately
but no
it takes time
to realise
make the changes
and let the changed happen

I am processing stuff around
friendship at the moment
I am not sure what I am feeling
but its not scarin me
in fact its inspiring me
cos I have never felt like this before

I dont want to hang on
or put guns against heads
or guilt trips
or any of that old stuff
and i dont beleive the world is coming to an end

This all is just unfamiliar territory
this friendship stuff
and I like it
even though I dont understand it
I have changed and so have my friends
we have changed and are changing for the better

Acceptance is the answer....

I really want to feel sorry for myself
at the moment
but I can't, its laughable
Feel sorry for what?

because my friends are doing amazing things?
... did you see an i'm not?
well you see I am doing amazing things tooo
so I cant use that excuse!

because I havent found jesus?
... well I have a very Big God... the father of... ahem.
so not a good enough excuse either!


I have no excuse for self pity
sadness and joy
are my lessons this week
they come together
they are not signs of weakness

Now I have to be willing to let go of my blogging again
I cant do everything
and much as I think its important
my ego is creeping in
and my motives have changed slightly
I need to read and study
and take part in real life again abit more
not that this is
But I have a few responsibilities to take care of
which I need to address
ie I am powerless over my blogging
and a couple of areas of my life
have become unmanageable...
or I havent managed to do some things
and wont whilst I do this

i'm off to let go absolutely
and pray for Willingness and Action

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Step 3 - Letting Go and Letting God (of our own understanding) drive me

A friend of mine joined her church
become one with her God her Christ
I cannot do this
I dont feel it
she does
Christ has done something with her
and its wonderful
to see it
I see the love she feels
I feel Jesus through her
she bears witness
she is a channel

I usually steer clear of communion
But today I challenged my old idea around this thing
I ask myself what
the act of not taking communion would have meant?
self will
an old idea that I cant do it
because I dont believe it...
the Jesus thing I mean
I prayed much and guess what
The minister covered every single
avenue I could have chosen
He made it very clear
that ANYONE could take communion
its all inclusive
Who am I to say that I am no-one?
Who am I to say I am an exclusion?
Do I know better?

I took communion for the first time
I wanted to
In the fellowship of the spirit
Together an act of fellowship
At one with my friend
and Jesus
I am not sure
exactly what it is
but It felt right
my motives were right

Will I take communion again?
I dont know
I understand its meaning
and today
It felt the way to go

my friend
I love you
God loves you
Thank you for including me
in your special ceremony
I know You are in Loving hands

I dedicate this song to you
Its called Everything by Tim Hughes
I love it because
Its about handing over my will and life
thats every part of my life
every part of
all of me
over to my God of my own understanding
my creator
its lovely
Turn it up and enjoy

Hey! Christ in me
Christ in me
Christ in me the hope the glory
You are everything
Be my everything

I love Jesus
even though I dont know him
it doesnt seem to matter
I see what He does in others
and its breathtaking

God thank you
The gift of sobriety
prolonges and enhances
it make us alive
Spiritual surgery
from the inside out

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Tears - Love - and a physical sign of letting go

I know not to stop the tears
when they come
seem to be doing alot lately

Letting go
of old ideas
things change
I change
you change
we change

Good news when you get sober and well
the rocket to the 4th dimension
picks you up and takes you to the most amazing places
its true

Its an wonderful thing to
see someone lifted up from the depths
and rocketted off
its what we get sober for
and at the same time
I feel some kind of sadness
and at the same time
I feel so joyful
to hear yet another person
finding themself
their calling
where they fit

Letting someone in
and letting them go with love
lessons to be learnt
thoughts that come

God, why let do you suggest I let people in when I feel like this when they go?
Cos johno...
if you hadnt, just think of all the laughs
you would have missed out on!
making friends is Gods Will
isolating alone was not

You will be ok
you will continue to breathe
she isnt going anywhere
and i will be keeping an eye on her

heres a go to bed

Its all like waves
come and go
ebb and flow
enjoy the moments
all of them
you have with anyone and everyone
its precious
and the memories you get to keep for free
are so damn worth it

Yes Johno
The gift of friendship
This is a different love
its real
and its lovely
and its safe
and its like no other
and johno it DOESNT end
this kind of Love is forever

Now will you go to bed?
ok, nite God
sleep well

Friday, February 15, 2008

Tradition 1 - Our sister the noisy drunk

1. Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon A.A. unity.

Without the group, there is no where for the newcomer to go to
When we were in the pub
Everyone talked and no-one listened
In the meetings
we talk one at a time
Sharing our experience strength and hope
For the newcomer who wants it

If someone disrupts the meeting
like our sister the noisy drunk
or without social skills
or just plain disruptive
or whatever
We are entitled to ask that person to leave
If necessary call the police
So that the meeting may continue
ready for when that person
if they want to has a meeting to come back to
or any other newcomer that drops by
who may be ready to hear its message
of recovery

Tradition 5. Each group has but one primary purpose—to carry its message to the alcoholic who still suffers.

Continual sharing of negativity
is not helpful
neither is unfocussed ranting
in meetings

We share in a general way
Experience Strength and hope

for the newcomer's
keep coming back
and stick with the winners

Comment Moderation re-enabled
For the moment

God bless

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Happy Valentines - and Conscious Incompetence (Stage 2)

Conscious incompetence
Though the individual does not understand or know how to do something, he or she does recognize the deficit, without yet addressing it.

here's where I am at in week 2 semester 2
Listening to a lecture
what the 'uck are you talking about
I am NEVER going to get this! (Like i know anything about the future)
even the little bit I knew about this subject
doesnt even seem to make sense any more!!

Old thinking would be
I have no chance AND
gets it!!
I am rubbish
I am NEVER going to get it...

Today, I know that I am EXACTLY
wher I am supposed to be
and if i wanted reassurance
which I dont today
shows me...
what I feel today
Is all part of the process

Keep on keeping on
there are 12 steps in the AA programme
there are 12 weeks in the seminar
keep turning up
even if you THINK its not happeneing as it should
do the work and let go!

Four stages of Competence
I am at stage 2
Which means just incase I wasnt sure
there is hope!
as long as I keep on doing the work


Badminton Model

Changing Minds

Business Model

Once again... I am just a text book case!
Thank fully

Happy Valentines
Lots a love

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

It works - It really does - I am not suprised!!!

Keep it simple
I feel better
I took inventory yet again (mine)
I prayed like my life and peace of mind depends on it (cos it does)
I bathed
put on clean clothes
ate breakfast
went to work
prayed at work (on knees) yes its is possible (for me essential, see below)
did what I was paid to do FIRST
did what I had been asked to do (some extra's voluntarily)
ate lunch
prayed during the day
prayed for people
prayed for fear to be removed
prayed for restraint of tongue and email
No self seeking
Much restraint
No drama
No wearing heart on sleeve
No expecting to be understood
No sulking either

Just for today
I will be agreeable.
I will look as well as I can, dress becomingly,
keep my voice low, be courteous, criticize not one bit.
I won't find fault with anything,
nor try to improve or regulate anybody but myself.


study tonight
all going ok
hard, processing, everything
asking for help in the right places
Trust the process (Faith)
Keep on keeping on
Action if the magic word (Works)

Faith without Works is dead!

I'm off for another heart to heart with God

ps praying on knees
does a few things for me
a) It makes me stop what I am doing
b) It makes me concentrate
c) it makes me listen to what I am saying
d) It changes the words into a real prayer
e) It makes my chat become genuine
f) humbly
g) It tells me I am serious about what i am saying

This is just one of the ways
required for me at the moment
I do pray all over the place
standing up, on my head
in the queue at supermarket
outloud, in silence
eyes shut, eyes open
naked, clothed
in bed, by the bed
in the kitchen, on the bus

There is no right way
Pray as you can, not as you cant!
You must have heard that one before
All prayers are heard

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Step 11 - again and again - Turn towards God - God is with me - through every high and low - He never lets go

Matt Redman - Never Let Go

More work required
Am working on it
with God
and my Sponsor
Letting go
On knees
but not crawling

Growth comes from pain
Lessons will be learnt
God is what I need
People will never be enough
No matter who they are
They will never live up to my
high expectations
at some point they will let me down
and again
and again
I try and find and exception

I'm off for another
conversation and a cuddle with God

Monday, February 11, 2008

Self will sends me so blind, I cannot see or feel God or the truth. What I see is still not the truth at times

All from pages 84,85,86,87 Big Book Alcoholics Anonymous

Thank God I can
Admit my shortcomings
and try again
and again
and again
and again

Our next function is to grow in understanding and effectiveness. This is not an overnight matter. It should continue for our lifetime. Continue to watch for selfishness, dishonesty, resentment, and fear. When these crop up, we ask God at once to remove them

It works, if we have the proper attitude and work at it. It would be easy to be vague about this matter. Yet, we believe we can make some definite and valuable suggestions.

When we retire at night, we constructively review our day. Were we resentful, selfish, dishonest or afraid?

Much has already been said about receiving strength, inspiration, and direction from Him who has all knowledge and power. If we have carefully followed directions, we have begun to sense the flow of His Spirit into us. To some extent we have become God-conscious. We have begun to develop this vital sixth sense. But we must go further and that means more action.

we ask God to direct our thinking

we ask God for inspiration, an intuitive thought or a decision. we relax and take it easy

heres 3 songs in one which just about sums me up at the moment

Being still inexperienced and having just made conscious contact with God, it is not probable that we are going to be inspired at all times. We might pay for this presumption in all sorts of absurd actions and ideas. Nevertheless, we find that our thinking will, as time passes, be more and more on the plane of inspiration. We come to rely upon it.

Suggestions about these may be obtained from one’s priest, minister, or rabbi. (or sponsor) Be quick to see where religious people are right. Make use of what they offer.

As we go through the day we pause, when agitated or doubtful, and ask for the right thought or action. We constantly remind ourselves we are no longer thought or action
running the show, humbly saying to ourselves many times each day “Thy will be done.” We are then in much less danger of excitement, fear, anger, worry, self-pity, or foolish decisions. We become much more efficient. We do not tire so easily, for we are not burning up energy foolishly as we did when we were trying to arrange life to suit ourselves.

It works-it really does.

We alcoholics are undisciplined. So we let God discipline us in the simple way we have just outlined. But this is not all. There is action and more action. “Faith without works is dead.” The next chapter is entirely devoted to Step Twelve.

Johno's stuff
See I know
But I am not doing?
I am doing... it my way
I can manipulate anything

No matter sometimes how much
I try and manipulate the world
eventually God
gets his own way
not that I complain when he does
cos its amazing
yet I still dont see when I am not letting go absolutely

I just spent a few hours
writing inventory
seeing whats really going on

Theres so much I could write
But I want to go back
and talk to God

See me feel me touch me
I am blind and want to see
Any lengths?
no I havent been
see I cant lie
I thought I was
but I wasnt
now I read step 10 and 11 in the big book
I havent!
How easy to get off track
and make up my own program of maintenence


Ps I know what the problem is
I just dont want to spend hours on here

Just to say
My resentments last week
though dealt with
still require work
more than I thought

I need to pray alot
not just say alot
on my knees
not on these keys

I just need to hand my Crown to God
and ask him to drive my intuition
So I can
feel touch
Instead of making demands
and self seeking in all directions
without much self restraint
well ok there is some
All my defects are appearing HUGE
to me at the moment

I am walking round
with all my nerve ends on the outside

This too shall pass
with some work!

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Even though we are dying we ask... Do you have a sufficient substitute?

Anything seems better than
Going back to AA
How are we to admit we go to AA?
how are we to admit to a society
that appears to accept binge drinking
and irresponsible behaviour whilst drunk
on a regular basis
Perhaps I am not an alky
as most of my friends
behave the same way as I do?

Perhaps I am not that bad really
Perhaps I dont need to keep coming to meetings
Perhaps I got it wrong
Perhaps I just need to cut down abit
Yes I have tried before
and it worked for abit
So perhaps I'll try again
stopping for abit I mean

Despite all we can say, many who are real alcoholics are not going to believe they are in that class. By every form of self-deception and experimentation, they will try to prove themselves exceptions to the rule, therefore nonalcoholic.P31

what I want to say really is
that the thought of coming here
every week for the rest of my life
is just simply pants!
but i dont want to hurt your feelings
and even though life's really awful
you dont really know how bad it is
and i cant tell you, you wouldnt understand

Anyway my life revolves around bars etc
all my friends drink
how would I tell my mum?
how will I have fun again?
even though what I just experienced
was simply pants!
the thought of doing all this is much worse
yeh I have only been to one meeting
ok i'll come to another next week
I promise

We have shown how we got out from under. You say, "Yes, I’m willing. But am I to be consigned to a life where I shall be stupid, boring and glum, like some righteous people I see? I know I must get along without liquor, but how can I?P152

but I am not sure its for me
Yeh what I heard all makes sense
I did some of those things too
and felt those things
and said those things

Have you a sufficient substitute?" P152

Yes, there is a substitute and it is vastly more than that. It is a fellowship in Alcoholics Anonymous. There you will find release from care, boredom and worry. Your imagination will be fired. Life will mean something at last. The most satisfactory years of your existence lie ahead.P152

Music is The Mountain Goats

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Step 1 - Chapter 1 Bill's Story

The drive for success was on. I´d prove to the world I was important.p2
Me too, I had a big inferiority complex
yet I believed I had so much undiscovered potential

Though my drinking was not yet continuous, it disturbed my wife.P2
me too, it was suggested I went to AA

By the time I had completed the course, I knew the law was not for me. The inviting maelstrom of Wall Street had me in its grip. Business and financial leaders were my heroes.P2
Me too I took a degree, didnt complete it,
resat it several times and then gave up,
it wasnt for me
The world I am now in took over
money, other peoples money taking care of it
I was wrong

We gave up our positions and off we roared on a motorcycle,
the sidecar stuffed with tent, blankets, a change of clothes P3

yeh I did this too, in search of the rainbow

My drinking assumed more serious proportions....almost every night.
The remonstrances of my friends terminated in a row and I became a lone wolf.
me too, work colleagues suggested not drinking in the week
So I stayed at home

The papers reported men jumping to death from the towers of High Finance. That disgusted me. I would not jump. I went back to the bar. My friends had dropped several million since ten o´clock-so what? Tomorrow was another day. As I drank, the old fierce determination to win came back. P4
yeh work colleagues came and went
I was deteremind to go on
at somepoint things would change
success would find me

I woke up. This had to be stopped. I saw I could not take so much as one drink.P5
Yeh I knew I had to try and go home without drinking
go and have an early night like normal people

Shortly afterward I came home drunk. There had been no fight. Where had been my high resolve? I simply didn´t know. It hadn´t even come to mind. Someone had pushed a drink my way, and I had taken it. Was I crazy? I began to wonder, for such an appalling lack of perspective seemed near being just that.P5
familiar stuff

In no time I was beating on the bar asking myself how it happened. As the whisky rose to my head I told myself I would manage better next time, but I might as well get good and drunk then. And I did.P6

The remorse, horror and hopelessness of the next morning are unforgettable. The courage to do battle was not there. My brain raced uncontrollably and there was a terrible sense of impending calamity.P6
Sounds like the morning after my last drink
I had lost all hope
I was beaten

The mind and body are marvelous mechanisms, for mine endured this agony two more years.P6
Mine too, fighting everything for 30something years
drinking for 20 of them

They did not need to tell me. I knew, and almost welcomed the idea. It was a devastating blow to my pride. I, who had thought so well of myself and my abilities, of my capacity to surmount obstacles, was cornered at last. P6&7
yeh I had ran out of ideas
ran out of hope
AA seemed like the only idea I could think of

No words can tell of the loneliness and despair I found in that bitter morass of self-pity.P7
NOt because of AA
simply because I couldnt figure thins out
I couldnt make any difference
I couldnt manage to change any thing consistantly
I couldnt manage to function like an average person I knew
on a day to day basis

Fear sobered me for a bit. Then came the insidious insanity of that first drink P8
Fear sobered me for ages
Fear and pride
what will not think of me
fear of rejection
fear of how it would be if I drank
eventually it was miserable just being sober

How dark it is before the dawn! In reality that was the beginning of my last debauch. I was soon to be catapulted into what I like to call the fourth dimension of existence. I was to know happiness, peace, and usefulness, in a way of life that is incredibly more wonderful as time passes P8


Step 1, it really is the end of the world as we know it!
The best is yet to come

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Freedom comings from aiming for living in the truth, the solution... as soon as I notice or am willing to see the dishonesty

What happened today?
As the direct result
of ADMITTING my dishonesty
- and how narrow an UNMANAGABLE my life had suddenly become
COMING TO BELIEVE there is another way, better, easier, softer
MAKING A DECISION to live in the truth (as I understand it)
ADMITTING my wrong motive with my boss God and myself
became ENTIRELY READY to live in the truth/faith not in FEAR
I asked my manager to be aware of my fear of whats appears to be simple face to face with colleagues and management tasks are terrifying to me, and how I would like to get over myself and the only way is for her to keep pushing me when the situations arise... please
in otherwords HUMBLY being willing to let go and let God
show my vulnerable self to another HUMAN,
trusting GOD it will be ok and it is
No-one had been harmed, my own pride and ego thats all!
No amends required
I am willing to CONTINUE to take my own invetory, again if I hadnt
I would not have the chance to IMPROVE grow, reduce my SHORTFALLS
I must remain willing to work towards the truth, God, the Best
Again here is an attempt to show how my life has improved
as a direct result of using the tools

Honesty, willingness and openmindedness, humility

Today, its about personal relations
I spoke with more colleagues, new starters
asked people things I was really scared about yesterday
and the day before, someone new asked me if I was a manager!?
My manager has suddenly become MORE impressed with me
in a different way
she is seeing me in a different light, because ? I HAVE LET HER IN
I have taken action, spoke to people rather than wishing I had/could
suddenly I have stopped letting fear be in control
living in the truth is much warmer friendly

God please continue to grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change
Courage to change the things I can
And wisdom to know the difference

I am lovin it Again

it accepting what I wasnt doing
getting honest
doing it

I have grown in a few days
not sure why I assume
hard times = pmt
I am seeing how fear is
as much of a liability!

Back at uni this week
I am well excited!
Hard work ahead
but day at a time
follow the suggestions
eat and attemp to sleep

I have faith

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Doing nothing is acceptable and study

At work
we are not busy
I keep asking for more work
amongst my peers
amongst my branch
all over really
and I am getting irrritated being the one asking for more work
is it me?
or do some people naturally just do very little
and not think about it?

A few years ago my case load was inhuman
and it was overmanic
everyone was the same and it calmed eventually
I came here and its so laid back
verging on .... dare I say it boring, now a doddle???
I hate saying easy money but its what it feels like
The fact I dont get pay rises
in a way I feel I am overpaid at the moment

The world! as in management and peers
knows I am willing to do more
so I guess I have to just accept
that its ok
now I am getting scared incase i get made redundant
yet its not been mentioned ever
talk about
overanalysing and worrying ?
self will again?

see I then start to query what other people do?
or are not doing?
and khow much money is wasted through
people working at a snails pace
because there is no measure
of how productive people are
I am telling you
pre menstrual tension does not help!
I was really glad at 5 o clock
to get out of there
being paid to sit and think?
Mind my own flippin business

Back at uni tonight
really excited!!! yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah
the lecturers are really encouraging and enthusiastic
and sympathetic to part time students
and they have a sense of humour!
I am lovin it
they finished us early tonight
and on the way home
walked past an AA meeting which was still on
and caught up with a few friends
met a newcomer
just had a bath
and I am going to bed

I am grateful
even with all this
I have laughed
I am making plans... not scheming, really plans
I am productive
I am useful
and I turn up
any self pity is of my own making

WE made our own misery....

Grumpy? yes i guess I am
I want to be busy LOL
Acceptance johno, learn how to do nothing
in an honest fashion, its allowed
while your boss says it is!

its exactly how its meant to be
at the moment!

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Resentment #1 Fear held me back now I see it

Selfishness-self-centeredness! That, we think, is the root of our troubles. Driven by a hundred forms of fear, self-delusion, self-seeking, and self-pity, we step on the toes of our fellows and they retaliate. Sometimes they hurt us, seemingly without provocation, but we invariably find that at some time in the past we have made decisions based on self which later placed us in a position to be hurt. P62

A desire
attention seeking
self seeking
seeking approval
starting to resent people, becoming a victim
allowing myself to be manipulated and resenting it

They took inventory all right, but hung on to some of the worst items in stock. They only thought they had lost their egoism and fear; they only thought they had humbled themselves.p73 (see this applies to step10's aswell as step 4, get to the root! dont hold back)

I got to the root this evening
Self centred Fear and pride
yes I knew that last night
but I didnt really know where this had come from?
well guess what I did (see I am a text book case p73 above)
I remember thinking
I am not applying for a management position
because I am afraid of failure and what people think of me
and its a new experience
working with people below and above me on the "food" chain
What I did was, said I wasnt applying
because it conflicts with my studies
and to take on anything new at the moment is not practical
hmmmm sounds like a sensible decision doesnt it?
I agree

BUT see motives are everything
I remember thinking, I am afraid
I remember having a conversation about why I was
not applying and feeling, what I am saying
"this is not quite right, it is not quite the truth"
while i was saying it

More than most people, the alcoholic leads a double life. He is very much the actor. To the outer world he presents his stage character. This is the one he likes his fellows to see. He wants to enjoy a certain reputation, but knows in his heart he doesn’t deserve it. p73

see how I can cover a bad motive with a good motive
for all the world to see I put my studies first
the truth is I am afraid of failure
working with people with myself being in the management position
is completely out of my comfort zone
and something that always seemed so far away from
where i could ever be!

who says? me
wrong! yet another frickin old idea
thats just reached the surface and is
currently being popped!

I got honest with myself and my manager
about myself and my fear
and felt my ego puncture
both aspects
the one which goes johno you are really good nowadays way hay!
and the one which says johno you are not as good as you think you are so dont think of progressing its not worth it stay as you are, no one will notice how useless you really are!

Anyway glad to have scraped a layer off last night
and today, I feel better

one of the pigs I often wrestle with is fear

It hurt
But it really needed doing

Will this go down as a regret? a missed opportunity
because I would not get over myself?
Yeh for abit
I have to have faith
and let go of my spiritual pride
than to be afraid and always embrace
getting out of my comfort zone
immediately and never be afraid again
just because I know fear holds me back
progress not perfection dude

To thine own self be true
I am enough


Thanks God, the willingness came

Monday, February 04, 2008

Resentment is the number one offender... Johno you need Gods help... just do it!

Resentment is the number one offender. It destroys more alcoholics than anything else.P64

whats it mean?
I for instance have a few resentments festering
which I need to do something about
i have "more" important things
and because I am getting some sort of pleasure
hanging around these people
waiting for some fantastical happy ending
I predict a happy ending
even though I can see I am not in it
I still predict, which is me running the show
rather than
than letting God take over and drive me
instead I (thats me the great me)
allow the defective motives
drive my actions
and lead to the consequences
and lead me into a resentment
which fans my selfcentred fear
which pops at my pride
which fanns my fear
which leads to me thinking I should run away
and isolate
and not take part in
...not just the activity
but everything, the whole thing

I am kidding myself that
I am taking part in something
with an attitude of service!
well I am
and at the same time
I am self seeking
and have a dishonest motive
self seeking
self centred
its all about me me me
and remember... other people are sick too

I need help, my world has got small
and God now has a couple of faces
So I am not looking at God
people are not God

we had to fearlessly face the proposition that either God is everything or else He is nothing. God either is or He isn't. What was our choice to be? P53

So our troubles, we think, are basically of our own making. They arise out of ourselves, and the alcoholic is an extreme example of self-will run riot, though he usually doesn´t think so. Above everything, we alcoholics must be rid of this selfishness. We must, or it kills us! God makes that possible. And there often seems no way of entirely getting rid of self without His aid. Many of us had moral and philosophical convictions galore, but we could not live up to them even though we would have liked to. Neither could we reduce our self-centeredness much by wishing or trying on our own power. We had to have God´s help. p62

Stop fighting and wrestling with the other sick Pig
two or three sick pigs wrestling makes a very big mess
you have no business going there
Leave it all alone

and Go to frickin bed! and pray for some willingness
and stop mucking about

"God, I offer myself to Thee-to build with me and to do with me as Thou wilt. Relieve me of the bondage of self, that I may better do Thy will. Take away my difficulties, that victory over them may bear witness to those I would help of Thy Power, Thy Love, and Thy Way of life. May I do Thy will always!" p63

Back on it

Planned the next two recipes
Another go at the yummy veggie chilli
and another chestnut something, I forgot
I burnt a pan last time I cooked up brown rice
something to do with... mind on my email instead of the cooker!
so I will be more careful this time

I noticed the last few weeks
How when I dont plan my food
It all gets abit patchy
I dont mean..
well yes I do mean patchy
all meals beome hit and miss
and hard work
energy wasting even

Now I have spent some hours cooking
Listening to the radio
and thats my meals coooked for the next week
breakfast is already sorted

3rd meal still hanging
oh well, progress
eating brakfast before 10am
lunch/dinner before 1pm
and dinner/tea before 7pm
really helps

Also stopped with the Mylo in the evening
I didnt realise how much sugar it was
I havent had more than 5 since december

I have lost 2 kg's without really trying
Like I said before
change of diet NOT an attempt to lose weight
I just leaned up without trying
excersize and yoga
drinking water, not excessive
it all happens
not sure the no meat really played a part in the weight loss
but overall, I do feel better with no eating it
I feel lighter, less saturated even

I still eat biscuits and chocolate
But you know
Like one of the trainers I know says
he doesnt do all the excersize and fitness
so he cant enjoy a bag of jelly babies
I agree

I enjoy my fitness
I enjoy my biscuits
I enjoy balance
I enjoy feeling physically lighter

Back on it

Planned the next two recipes
Another go at the yummy veggie chilli
and another chestnut something, I forgot
I burnt a pan last time I cooked up brown rice
something to do with... mind on my email instead of the cooker!
so I will be more careful this time

I noticed the last few weeks
How when I dont plan my food
It all gets abit patchy
I dont mean..
well yes I do mean patchy
all meals beome hit and miss
and hard work
energy wasting even

Now I have spent some hours cooking
Listening to the radio
and thats my meals coooked for the next week
breakfast is already sorted

3rd meal still hanging
oh well, progress
eating brakfast before 10am
lunch/dinner before 1pm
and dinner/tea before 7pm
really helps

Also stopped with the Mylo in the evening
I didnt realise how much sugar it was
I havent had more than 5 since december

I have lost 2 kg's without really trying
Like I said before
change of diet NOT an attempt to lose weight
I just leaned up without trying
excersize and yoga
drinking water, not excessive
it all happens
not sure the no meat really played a part in the weight loss
but overall, I do feel better with no eating it
I feel lighter, less saturated even

I still eat biscuits and chocolate
But you know
Like one of the trainers I know says
he doesnt do all the excersize and fitness
so he cant enjoy a bag of jelly babies
I agree

I enjoy my fitness
I enjoy my biscuits
I enjoy balance
I enjoy feeling physically lighter

Friday, February 01, 2008

Tradition 3 - The only requirement for AA membership is a desire to stop drinking

This tradition, kept me coming back at a time when I had lost the obsession to drink and I thought I had other problems which needed addressing first. So I was ready to not come back.

In my opinion, no step or tradition really works entirely on its own, but I hope to have covered a few things here which have come up for me over the last few years.

I DO NOT SPEAK FOR AA, this some of how you explained it to me and most of my interpretation of this tradition from the literature, my own experience and the strength and hope I have gained from it all :) I am sure you will shed some further light on it too, its a fab tradition, I think. All inclusive, unconditional, for all drinkers who've been to a hell (of your own understanding)

Keep it simple though
Keep coming to meetings until you decide you are in the wrong place
rather than spending lots of energy fighting against whether you are an alky or not

better to be in a meeting and find out you are not an alky
than drink yourself to death never knowing there is a solution

Tradition 3 - The only requirement for AA membership is a desire to stop drinking
It doesnt say you have to qualify your membership with anyone
It doesn't say you have to qualify your desire to stop with anyone
It doesn't say you have to be sober to be a member
It doesn't say you have to be continuously sober to maintain membership
It doesn't say you have to be clean
It doesn't say you have to promise never to drink again
It doesn't day you have to believe it works
It doesn't say you have to understand anything
It doesn't say you have to want to be in a meeting
It doesn't say you have to know you are an alcoholic
It doesn't say you have to accept you are an alcoholic
It doesn't say you have to like being there
It doesn't say you have to get a sponsor
It doesn't say you have to do and step work
It doesn't say you have to believe in God
It doesn't say you have to sit at the front
It doesn't say you have to share
It doesn't say you have to speak with anyone
It doesn't say you have to be a certain type of alcoholic
It doesn't say you have to be a certain type of drinker
It doesn't say how much you must have drank
It doesn't say how bad it had to have got
It doesn't say you have to announce you are a member
Some special interest groups exclude some people...

It doesn't say you have to qualify your desire to stop with anyone

Full stop.

It doesnt say you have to qualify your membership with anyone
Full stop.

It doesn't say you have to be sober to be a member
Sometimes quickly sometimes slowly
The 1st time I came to AA I the though of stopping drinking was not there
I had no desire
For somepeople, the desire is there, BUT the obsession is massive
which is why the need to keep coming back to meetings
getting a sponsor and doing the steps is so important
to build up a mental defence with HP/God (as you understand it)
ie if we could stay sober without meetings alone
we would have done
so If you are unable to stay stopped and have a desire to stop
keep coming to meetings regardless, but please do not disrupt the meeting

It doesn't say you have to be continuously sober to maintain membership
keep coming to meetings
follow suggestions and eventually
if you have a desire to stop drinking
and are wiling to go to anylength
you will connect with HP'God
which will give you the Power you are lacking

It doesn't say you have to be clean
Many of us come in with other problems
me, obsessions, with people, places,things, thoughts, behaviours habits
AA deals with the drink problem
the principles of the steps if applied to other life areas
(all our affairs) will help solve our problems

It doesn't say you have to promise never to drink again
minute/hour/morning/afternoon/evening just try it NO PROMISES
easy does it, small chunks
not, I am going to stop drinking for xx amount of time
cinch by the inch, hard by the yard

It doesn't say you have to believe it works
I did not believe I would be happy joyeous and free
I did not even know what good felt like
I did not half the time know what it works meant!
I just did what you said works for you because you encouraged me to aswell and said I am not special or different. You were right.

It doesn't say you have to understand anything
Whats the steps?
Whats the traditions?
Whats an alcoholic?
Is my drinking that bad?
Dont worry, just keep coming back
Understand we have a solution which works for us, it will work for you to, if you want to give it a go, we will tell you what we did and show you
You dont have to understand it, just do it anyway
You will understand once you have done it
and what you dont understand, you wont worry about
Bizarre but true
Even the control freaks amongst us (me), just trust we dont need to understand
EVERY infinite detail of everything to KNOW its worked and works nowadays

It doesn't say you have to want to be in a meeting
Thank god for that
Like its not pleasurable being in a meeting for ages
But the effect it has seems to make it alright
Healing, safe and unconditional love without us having to do anything except turn up and listen

It doesn't say you have to know you are an alcoholic
It took me nearly 3 months sober to know I am

It doesn't say you have to accept you are an alcoholic
It took another 6 months or so to begin to accept it
ie stop comparing myself with other people's drinking habits and stories
It took me another couple of years to fully accpept I am an alcoholic

It doesn't say you have to like being there
Yeh its true too
Act as if your life depends on it
Because it may well do
Act as if you may be the only person apart from the newcomer that may turn up that evening, go with an attitude of service

It doesn't say you have to get a sponsor
I found it imperative in my recovery
Most of the people I know have be taken through the steps with a sponsor who was taken through the steps with a sponsor
The steps and everything came alive once I started working with a sponsor
AA is all inclusive not exclusive
Its your recovery
Its not a MUST

It doesn't say you have to do any step work
I found that after abit, I saw people cahnging and getting happier, calmer
these were the people doing the steps, with a sponsor
I wanted that, so I did what they did
Its your recovery
Its not a MUST

It doesn't say you have to believe in God
I didnt believe in anything atall, possibly ghosts and the others side
I just came to believe in what you "people" shared which was experience, strength and hope, my belief in God came upon me gradually

It doesn't say you have to sit at the front
When I got crushes AND RESENTMENTS about other members, I obsessed about them instead of listening to sharing, so I was encouraged to sit at the front in front of the speaker, that way I would have less distractions
When I was shy (pride/self centred/fear) about sharing, I was encouraged to sit at the front and share for the newcomer, not for my ego or to impress who may be sitting behind me, JUST SHARE my experience strength and hope AND GET IN THERE FIRST

It doesn't say you have to share
Thank goodness, I was frightened of saying thewrong thing for ages

It doesn't say you have to speak with anyone
thank goodness, I had nothing to say much at first except yes i am FINE!
or I dont want to speak cos I dont know what to say
and when I did speak, fear it wont be good enough... or you'll think i am weird
Nowadays I have too much to say!
Which is why working with newcomers is good to pass on stuff

It doesn't say you have to be a certain type of alcoholic
there is no set drinking pattern to fit to
just possibly if you try and stop and find you cant, or try and control your drinking and cant, you may be alcoholic

It doesn't say you have to be a certain type of drinker
It doesnt matter how much you drank or how little
what time of day or night
what type of drinks
it doesnt specify

It doesn't say how much you must have drank
shorts or pints
bottles or cases
it doesnt specify

It doesn't say how bad it had to have got
It got bad enough

It doesn't say you have to announce you are a memberYou are a member when you feel you are

Some special interest groups exclude some people...
This is not in keeping with tradition 3
AA is inclusive not exclusive
BUT in London for instance there are "special interest" meetings which are listed as non-restrictive, if someone comes who announces they do not fit, or obviously does not fit with the meeting, its generally accepted they will receive the welcome of any newcomer, and given the details of the nearest general meeting. Tradition 4, All meetings are autonomous except in matters affecting AA as a whole.

Keep coming back :)