Learning to live Just for Today
Addiction recovery just for today means living one Day At a Time. One of the best ways to stop worrying and start living is to take things one day at a time. Forget what has happened in the past that you cannot change and don’t worry about what might happen in the future. 99% of the things that you worry about will never occur. Newcomers to recovery are familiar with the advice to live one day at a time, to be in the present, and to avoid spending precious moments worrying about or living in the past. That all sounds well and good, but when it comes time to actually act on the advice, it may be a lot tougher than you think.
You surely know how important acceptance is in the 12 steps of addiction recovery right? Any non-acceptance of the present moment, comes through as moving either forward or backward out of the present space and time you find yourself in. Even complaining is non-acceptance of what is if you think about it? Now, that’s what addicts do a lot of. Blaming and complaining. Bitching and moaning. Griping and stinking thinking. There is no peace. No joy. No acceptance. No thoughts of addiction recovery just for today. I will accept things as they are and do my best to improve situations. So right here we can see what is missing from our ideals of peace and a high quality, joyful life. To recover from thinking that obsessively goes into the past or drifts into the future, you need to practice the present moment. Sounds strange doesn’t it. But meditation, yoga, silent retreats, affirmations and many other mindful practices all teach us to be conscious of living addiction recovery just for today. Right here and now. Read the famous NA poem below and grasp a sense of what it really means.
JUST FOR TODAY my thoughts will be on my recovery,
living and enjoying life without the use of drugs.
JUST FOR TODAY I will have faith in someone in NA who
believes in me and wants to help me in my recovery.
JUST FOR TODAY I will have a program. I will try to follow it
to the best of my ability.
JUST FOR TODAY, through NA, I will try to get a better
perspective on my life.
JUST FOR TODAY I will be unafraid. My thoughts will be on
my new associations, people who are not using and
who have found a new way of life. So long as I follow
that way, I have nothing to fear.
Just as a long-distance runner has to learn how to modulate his or her pace, just to ensure there’s enough stamina and energy to withstand the long haul, when you’re in recovery you just need to learn how to take things in moderation. That means not overpromising and feeling disheartened because you’re unable to deliver. Under promising and recognizing that you have to walk before you can run has to be first and foremost in your thoughts as you make daily schedules and assign projects to yourself pertinent to your addiction recovery just for today.
Tolle says that “All negativity is caused by an accumulation of psychological time and denial of the present. Unease, anxiety, tension, stress, worry – all forms of fear – are caused by too much future, and not enough presence. Guilt, regret, resentment, grievances, sadness, bitterness, and all forms of non-forgiveness are caused by too much past, and not enough presence.” Every morning starting fresh with an addiction recovery just for today is vital. Every evening comes to an end and is no less important to let accumulation of the day go. This poem puts it beautifully.
Just for tonight – by Kathy H
Just for tonight you’ll be alright
In the quiet dark of the evening
My thoughts will not deceive me
I have faith in God above
I believe He is full of Love
I have a ship to weather the storm
With all the help I will transform
So hold on tight
And don’t lose sight
Just for tonight I’ll be alright
Living hour to hour is something we hear about in the Big Book of AA. It says addiction is the great solvent that equalizes all people. We are equal in our addiction and equal in our program of recovery. Although with each passing day of sobriety we get clearer, we are only one fix, pill, drink, smoke, or snort away from a binge–at 18 days or 18 years! May I realize I am no better or worse than another, or them from me. We are equal in our addiction recovery just for today!
Letting Go is something that living just for today requires for each of us. Letting go of the past and moving on is a tall order; it requires a kind of releasing that I still find difficult to do. My past will always be in the shadows of my memory to haunt me if I do not recognize it as a part of me. If I pretend it’s not important, grit my teeth and force myself to numb myself, I have missed the point of this process. On the other had, if I am unwilling to let go no matter how many times I have worked through certain issues, I am also not allowing myself to be fully healthy and return to life. The part of my healing that is a flowing through the stored pain from the past is a decisive, forward-moving action.
Ten tips from Pope John XXIII about how to live addiction recovery just for today
- Only for today, I will seek to live the livelong day positively without wishing to solve the problems of my life all at once.
- Only for today, I will take the greatest care of my appearance: I will dress modestly; I will not raise my voice; I will be courteous in my behavior; I will not criticize anyone; I will not claim to improve or to discipline anyone except myself.
- Only for today, I will be happy in the certainty that I was created to be happy, not only in the other world but also in this one.
- Only for today, I will adapt to circumstances, without requiring all circumstances to be adapted to my own wishes.
- Only for today, I will devote 10 minutes of my time to some good reading, remembering that just as food is necessary to the life of the body, so good reading is necessary to the life of the soul.
- Only for today, I will do one good deed and not tell anyone about it.
- Only for today, I will do at least one thing I do not like doing; and if my feelings are hurt, I will make sure that no one notices.
- Only for today, I will make a plan for myself: I may not follow it to the letter, but I will make it. And I will be on guard against two evils: hastiness and indecision.
- Only for today, I will firmly believe, despite appearances, that the good Providence of God cares for me as no one else who exists in this world.
- Only for today, I will have no fears. In particular, I will not be afraid to enjoy what is beautiful and to believe in goodness. Indeed, for 12 hours I can certainly do what might cause me consternation were I to believe I had to do it all my life.
For more help with addiction recovery just for today contact Pathways. We are always here to help. Call 0824424779