Excerpts from "Living Sober"
"It is the first drink which triggers, immediately or some time later, the
compulsion to drink more and more until we are in drinking trouble again. Many
of us have come to believe that our alcoholism is an addiction to the drug
alcohol; like addicts of any sort who want to maintain recovery, we have to keep
away from the first dose of the drug we have become addicted to."
From "Staying away from the first drink:" c. 1975, Living Sober,
"Here's an old saying that has special, strong meaning for us. Simply
stated, it is this: Above all other concerns, we must remember that we cannot
drink. Not drinking is the first order of business for us, anywhere, any time,
under any circumstances. "This is strictly a matter of survival for us. We
have learned that alcohol is a killer disease, leading to death in a large
number of ways. We prefer not to activate that disease by risking a drink."
Things First':"1998, Living Sober - page 32
"As alcoholics, we often tended to gulp drinks faster than other
people did. "The slogan 'Easy Does It' is one way we A.A.'s remind each
other that many of us have tendencies at times to overdo things, to rush
heedlessly along, impatient with anything that slows us down. We find it hard to
relax and savor life...in short, how to enjoy the journey, instead of just
fretting until we reach our destination.
"Remind yourself once in a while that maybe 'Easy Does It' is this day's
From "Easy Does It:" - c. 1998, Living Sober, pages 44-46
"We drunks are very 'iffy' people. During our drinking days, we were often
full of ifs, as well as liquor. A lot of our dreams started out, 'IF only...'
"Over and over, we have found we cannot stay sober long just for the sake
of wife, husband, children, lover, parents, other relative, or friend, nor for
the sake of a job, nor to please a boss (or doctor or judge or creditor) -- not
for ANYONE other than ourselves."
"Getting out of the 'if' trap:" c. 1998, Living Sober - pages 63 &
"It is now well established that willpower all by itself is about as
effective a cure for alcohol addiction as it is for cancer...Most of us tried
going it alone, hoping either to control our drinking or to stop, and we had no
lasting success in either endeavor. "But we finally asked ourselves:
Wouldn't it be more intelligent to seek out and tap a strength greater than our
own than to persist in our futile solo efforts...?"
"Letting go of old ideas:"1998, Living Sober, page 73
"We realize now that we were excessively self-centered, chiefly
concerned about OUR feelings, OUR problems, other people's reactions to US, and
OUR past and future. Therefore, trying to get into communication with and to
help other people is a recovery measure for us, because it helps take us out of
ourselves. Trying to heal ourselves by helping others works, even when it is an
insincere gesture. Try it sometime."
c. 1975, Living Sober, page 85