Monday, 5 February 2018

Big Book vs old-fashioned AA

Sometimes the world of Big Book AA slams old-fashioned AA, because of its emphasis on willpower, slogans, and simplicity.

The entire AA programme per the Big Book actually takes a while to get through properly. Newcomers sometimes have a screaming head full of doubt during the process. How do you get through until the spiritual awakening promised by the Steps per the Big Book actually materialises in terms of serenity and peaceful, right thinking?

Well, this is where old-fashioned AA comes in.

One day at a time: don't try to solve your whole life problem all at once. Ignore the past or future unless the Steps require you to examine them, and then examine them only with your sponsor or other trusted souls.

Do the next right thing: stay out of your head and into action. What's the next right thing? Pray for answers. If you're unsure, ask your sponsor or other trusted souls.

Get to bed tonight without a drink or a drug: frankly that's sometimes the best you can do. Which leads me onto:

If you don't drink today, you're a success: this alleviates the pain stemming from a sense of failure if one's head is nuts.

Your head's like a bad neighbourhood: if you must go there, go accompanied (see above).

This too shall pass: if you can stand the pain and mental bombardment for five minutes, and keep doing five minutes, working up to an hour, and then up to a day, eventually, it will pass. The worst that can happen is being in a bad mood for a while.

Don't drink or drug no matter what: we know this is God's will, and we invoke God's will to do this. Don't wait to get your head sorted out first: don't drink or drug today, and gradually you will sort everything else out.

Do something for someone else: this will take your mind off yourself.

I know these aren't in the Big Book per se. So shoot me. They actually work, when applied in conjunction with the Steps, fellowship, and service.

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