You can be a good example or a great reminder

meditationBefore you roll your eyes at me with the preachy title, hear me out…

I am working my way through all the shair podcasts.
I love Omar, he such a cool dude. I love the way he structures the show and also how he asks his guests what their sobriety ‘routine’ is. As someone who was a dry drunk for a good few years, I know first hand that if you want to stay stopped for good you need to do way more than just stop drinking.

Stop drinking is a good first step but that’s all it is, a first step. No one on earth can stay sober if that is all there is to recovery. You have to rewire and reprogram your brain, you have to put in the work and do some serious soul searching You have to get honest with yourself and with your loved ones. You basically have to rebuild yourself from the ground up.

The people he interviews are in long time recovery and they all have something in common. Most of them start their day with some form of spiritual practice. This can take the form of prayer, meditation or just gentle stretches and setting intentions for the day. They also touch base with people in recovery regularly, this can be anything from attending meetings, staying in touch with sober peeps or volunteering. (I think blogging counts;)

Another thing they have in common is gratitude. An attitude of gratitude is key to a happy sober life but this is also a practise. Some days you will just feel like rubbish and that’s ok. I have been keeping a gratitude journal, and extract from when I was going through a really rough time recently:

1) I am so grateful this day has come to an end

2) I am really really grateful that I didn’t kill anyone and that everyone is still alive

3) I am so blessed to be able to sleep now.

See, that right there is still being grateful even if you feel like sh*t.

On one of the episodes, a lady was talking about AA and quoted an old timer that gave her good advice.

“ You can be a good example or a great reminder” I belly laughed at that quote, I don’t know why I find it so funny, I just do.

These ‘pearls of wisdom’ can also irritate me to no end. The rebel in me just doesn’t want to deal with it. I never signed up to be an example to anyone! When this becomes a ‘moral’ issue you lose me completely. I’m way to anti-establishment for that. One of the things that most alcoholics have in common is that they are non-conformist and this trait has served me well in some respects.

But something about that quote sticks to me like an old chewed up piece of gum. I think it’s the second part of the sentence that really gets me… I may not have signed up to be an example to anyone but I also didn’t sign up to be a walking reminder of what addiction can do.

I would rather have a happy life:)

46 thoughts on “You can be a good example or a great reminder

  1. I love this post! I was a great reminder to my kids. But now, I hope I’m becoming a good example. And you are so right about having to rebuild your life. The ocean of alcohol leave a big void when it goes. And there’s that big path of destruction it left behind. Patience, never one of my strong suits, is what I am praying for today.


    Liked by 4 people

  2. I am so thankful for the great reminders all around me! Honestly I have to be grateful or I would cry, I mean trying to be sober whilst living with a man who has his alcohol lined up on the bookshelf of the lounge is not easy. All my old favourites, Baileys, scotch, port. He got them all for his birthday from well meaning friends and family. What a waste of money, I could buy a nice ring with all that. But seeing his face with that familiar dopey alcohol grin and then watching him fall asleep in the middle of the movie reminds me of how blessed I am.
    I am far from perfect but far enough away from that crazy world to know I don’t want to go back. I continue to thank God for any more great reminders he may care to put before me.

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  3. I love that, it’s so true. When it comes to alcohol previously I have been a good reminder. A reminder to stay sober, you don’t want to have to restart again like me. I’ve been a good reminder to others and myself that moderation doesn’t exist. A good reminder as to how shit it can feel being trapped in an addiction. For 3 years I have been a good reminder, and now I am hoping to be a good example! We are all a good example.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’ve lost count at the amount of day one’s I’ve had. I’m a ‘good example’ of how to keep trying and so are you 🙂 not necessarily a good example of how not to relapse or lapse. You are right we are all good example of something or other.

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Thank you for sharing Shari podcast. I’m going to check it out. I love finding new things to listen to. I always worry about my tween son as he reminds me so much of me. I’m now going to be a good example 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Hi Hurrah!
    Sometimes I want to be an example or a reminder,
    and other times I don’t want to be an example or a reminder!
    I think it depends on my mood.
    But I do agree with the the gratitude.
    There is something so powerful about it.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I love the title/quote! It’s like “you’re either walking away from a drink or towards one.” I used to hate that saying too, thinking it was too black and white, but then I realized my reason for my contempt was because I was guilty of the latter. What an amazing thing it is to have a shift in perspective and start walking the talk.


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