Finding Spiritual (not religious) Power

Those familiar with Twelve Step recovery know that the First Step begins “Admitted we were powerless over [alcohol], [crack], [meth], [food], [Amazon’s next day delivery option]”. I could expand the list ad infinitum. But what do we really mean by proclaiming ourselves powerless? I’d argue that it doesn’t mean that I am incompetent, feeble or […]

The Journey Past Suicidal Thinking

Hollow. So spiritually empty inside that I was hollow. I couldn‘t drink enough, sex enough, gamble enough, or degrade myself enough to fill the void. So hollow it ached. Over the two decades that I drank it progressed from a vague unrest to an inner void so pronounced that I was an existential vacuum sucking […]

Overcoming Resentments

Drunks who want to upgrade to recovered alcoholics tend to take a hard look at their resentments. This is a process that can benefit not only addicts, but anyone with a desire to free themselves of resentments as well. A written moral inventory is the fourth step in Twelve-Step recovery and is the first step […]

Fake It ‘Till You Make It???

Hang around the rooms of Twelve Step recovery long enough and you’ll hear someone drop the little gem: “Fake it ’till you make it.” For years I have been indifferent towards this little rhyme, but having given it a little thought I believe the next time I hear it I will smack the person who […]

A Classroom Called Hope

While still an active alcoholic, while still whoring it up on a regular basis, my hypocrisy knew no bounds. Six and a half days a week I was a degenerate, but for an hour on the Sabbath I rested from my degrading ways and taught a Sunday school class for sixteen year olds. Most of […]

Service: The Key to Spiritual Fullfillment

It starts with a Divine spark within. For me it was the smallest of embers after years of drinking alcoholically and living a selfish, self-centered life devoid of helping others. Note that I did not say a life devoid of loving thoughts. I had loving thoughts; I just failed to put them into action. Thoughts […]

Breaking the Cycle of Relapse

It was a Wednesday. It followed a weekend binge that didn‘t stop Sunday night, Monday morning or Tuesday afternoon. I kept calling in sick to work. I couldn’t stop. It would prove to be my last spree. It was a long time in the making. I went to my first Twelve Step meeting when I […]

Mind Jar Meditation

Lost in the mad rush of modern society is the concept of the Sabbath … a day of rest and rejuvenation. I needed rest and rejuvenation. I cared little of the debate whether the Sabbath falls on a Saturday or Sunday. I cared little of Biblical injunctions on what I could or couldn’t do on […]

Making Gratitude an Action Word

Several years ago, after being tipped off to the practice by a friend, I started wearing a rubber band around my right wrist. Thanks to the advent of the cell phone, I rarely wear a wristwatch so there is some empty fleshy real estate. But the rubber band is not a fashion accessory; rather, it […]

Book Review-Sane: Mental Illness, Addiction and the Twelve Steps

Dual-diagnosis. Co-occurring disorder. Bipolar alcoholic. That‘s how I’m branded. I used to deal with my alcoholism and bipolar disorder as two separate and distinct issues-intensive step work to deal with alcoholism and mindlessly taking meds for the bipolar disorder. Then four years into my permanent sobriety I got the hair-brained notion (which I regrettably picked […]