StepsSome of us like to skip steps. We love shortcuts. If there’s a way to get something quicker and use less energy, sign us up for that.

And in active addiction, this tendency is set to blast. It goes to ELEVEN. We want it now. If we don’t like the way something makes us feel, we’d rather just bypass that feeling altogether. So we drink or use.

Of course this does nothing for the source of our feelings. It doesn’t fix the thing causing the feelings. And while we’re medicating, the problem still exists and usually gets worse. Small problems grow into bigger problems. And ignoring them takes life to all-time lows.

Of course, these problems usually beget new problems. And instead of facing our challenges and taking them on, we mask them.

The people who love us look at us in disbelief. They can’t believe we don’t see it. They are amazed at our resolve to continue to live in this illusion. So they stop trusting us. They lose all respect for us. They see us as hiders. Because that’s what we’ve become. And that’s the truth.

Steps. Recovery is a process.

Recovery requires us to face our feelings and the problems that cause them. That’s living life on life’s terms. We live in a broken world that requires our full attention. Because any life filled with problems is also a life where solutions are available. We have the opportunity — and responsibility — to show up.

In recovery we face our challenges and we take them on.

This is the simple genius of the Twelve Steps. They force us to face the issues that we’ve ignored or tried to bypass for so long. They provide a linear / sequential process for living life on life’s terms. They’re in order. Heck, they even have numbers.

When we follow these simple steps, without taking shortcuts, we learn to manage life. Unmanageability was the hallmark of our addiction. The steps restore manageability and set us on course to manage anything.

Just remember this today: Shortcuts don’t always simplify life. Ordered steps do.

Here’s an article on what taking the first step looks like.

What’s the next step for you today?    

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