Action, Action, and More Action!

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Continuous action is near-impossible for anyone, but consistent action is an attainable goal for anyone who is willing to take things slow and steady. For alcoholics and addicts, we must stay vigilant against relapse in order to maintain our lives in recovery. Luckily for us, the things we do to prevent a slip are also the things that help us grow, experience life more fully, and feel more joy. It’s very much a win-win situation for alcoholics and addicts who remain willing to engage in the 12-Step program of recovery at Jaywalker Lodge. But make no bones about it, it does require action.

Actions Speak Louder Than Words

The types of action required vary depending on which of the 12-Steps we’re on with our sponsor or where we’re trying to grow in our life. Sometimes the action we need to take is to meditate, sometimes it’s to write a thorough inventory. Maybe we are asked to be of service or maybe we’re just asked to lend an ear. Whatever we are called to do, it requires us to act with willingness and presence. Some actions are harder than others, and the results of our actions aren’t always what we expect. It’s unlikely that we failed to act in our disease when we needed a drink or a drug, so we put ourselves in a needlessly precarious position when we fail to act in favor of our recovery.

The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous shares the biblical quote, “Faith without works is dead.” What does this mean exactly? It means that our actions are a better indicator of what we believe in than our words and hopes are. It also means that if we truly want to have a meaningful, free, joyous life in recovery, we need to put our actions behind that and not just our desires. The 12-Steps give us clear-cut actions we can take to begin our life in recovery, and they remain the foundation for continuous action as we grow and live in recovery. The 12-Steps aren’t meant to be taken only once, and most people who experience the benefits of doing them the first time happily choose to engage in them on a regular basis.

Actions and the 12-Steps

Of course, life is a complex and varied journey, and new things happen every day. We discover new goals, dreams, and circumstances along the way. The 12-Steps give us actions that we can engage in consistently, despite the ups and downs of life. But they also provide us with an ever-growing foundation that we can use to discover all sorts of other positive actions to engage in. From coping skills to mental exercises to spiritual disciplines, there will always be positive actions we can take at any given time, for any given reason. When we set a new goal for our life, we may experience fear or doubt. We can inventory those things with our sponsor. If we are having trouble in our relationships, we can inventory our mistakes and make the proper amends. If something or someone has hurt our feelings, we can take it through the 12-Steps and get some freedom. Whatever life holds, the program of recovery provides constructive and clearly outlined actions that we can take.

It is important that we engage willingly in the actions necessary to support, strengthen, and expand our recovery if we wish to remain in recovery for the long term. Diligence is not only necessary, but the rewards of a strong recovery are always increasing. Every action we take in recovery at Jaywalker Lodge, no matter how small, is meaningful and impactful. In life, everything we do or don’t do has a consequence. For those of us in recovery from alcoholism and addiction, the consequences could be life or death. Therefore, it’s easy to see why we must remain active in our recovery program — not just to stay sober and not just to keep us from relapsing, but to deepen the meaning, joy, and experience of our lives.

The Work Is Worth It

How exactly do we acquire the energy to engage in all this activity? Again, the 12-Steps are pretty well-rounded. By working the 12-Steps, we are able to gain conscious contact with our higher power. This connection provides us with a continual source of energy, guidance, and direction. We maintain contact with our higher power, we hit meetings, we enjoy fellowship with our sober community, and we work the 12-Steps with our sponsor and sponsees. Every time we take one or all of these actions, we are given the energy, motivation, and direction to do even more. It’s a wonderful feedback loop of positive activity and growth. As long as we stay in this rhythm of recovery, we are empowered to remain in recovery and continue to grow.

It may sound like a lot of work, but it’s not nearly as difficult as living with active alcoholism or addiction. In our disease, we were usually willing to take any action necessary to get what we needed. Why shouldn’t we be willing to take any action necessary to thrive in recovery? Don’t ever sell yourself short. Get into the 12-Step process of action and receive not only the direction you need, but the energy to follow through. As alcoholics and addicts, we have already lost enough of our lives to disease and inaction. Recovery is meant to show us how vibrant life can be.

If you or a loved one is struggling to maintain recovery from alcoholism or addiction, we understand. Jaywalker Lodge was built to help men who earnestly want to recover, but find it difficult to maintain long-term sobriety. No matter how many times you have tried in the past, we are here to help you. It’s time to take action.

Call Jaywalker Lodge today at (866) 529-9255.

author avatar
Stefan Bate, MA, LAC, CCTP Chief Clinical Officer
Stefan Bate, BA, MA, LAC holds a Master's Degree in Applied Psychology from Regis University and is a Licensed Addiction Counselor in the state of Colorado. Stefan has wide-ranging experience in the field of addiction recovery including: working as a recovery coach, therapist, and program director.

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