Sober Living Quotes

"I have come to believe that hard times are not just meaningless suffering and that something good might turn up at any moment. That's a big change for someone who used to come to in the morning feeling sentenced to another day of life. When I wake up today, there are lots of possibilities. I can hardly wait to see what's going to happen next."

– Anonymous

"By three methods we may learn wisdom: First, by reflection, which is noblest; Second, by imitation, which is easiest; and third by experience, which is the bitterest"

– Confucius

"There is an island of opportunity in the middle of every difficulty."

– Anonymous

"All truths are easy to understand once they are discovered; the point is to discover them."

– Galileo Galilei

"Humility is the foundation of all the other virtues hence, in the soul in which this virtue does not exist there cannot be any other virtue except in mere appearance."

– Saint Augustine

"...one of the primary differences between alcoholics and nonalcoholics is that nonalcoholics change their behavior to meet their goals and alcoholics change their goals to meet their behaviors."

– Anonymous

"We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them."

– Albert Einstein

"We can't have full knowledge all at once. We must start by believing; then afterwards we may be led on to master the evidence for ourselves."

– Thomas Aquinas

"Happiness cannot be traveled to, owned, earned, worn or consumed. Happiness is the spiritual experience of living every minute with love, grace, and gratitude."

– Denis Waitley

"God, give us grace to accept with serenity the things that cannot be changed, courage to change the things which should be changed and the wisdom to distinguish the one from the other."

– Reinhold Niebuhr

"I've been benefited from a dictionary definition I found that reads: "Rationalization is giving a socially acceptable reason for socially unacceptable behavior, and socially unacceptable behavior is a form of insanity."

– Anonymous

"Strength of mind rests in sobriety; for this keeps your reason unclouded by passion."

– Pythagoras

"The main reason I go to AA meetings is because I’m stark-raving sober."

– John S.

"Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment."

– Buddha

"From experience, I've realized that I cannot go back and make a brand-new start. But through A.A., I can start from now and make a brand-new end."

– Anonymous

"Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."

– Albert Einstein

"We feel the way we feel because we think the way we think. If we don’t like the way we feel then we must change the way we think."

– Anonymous

"Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned."

– Buddha

"To be vital, faith must be accompanied by self sacrifice and unselfish, constructive action.."

– Anonymous

"Faith is a living, daring confidence in God's grace, so sure and certain that a man could stake his life on it a thousand times."

– Martin Luther

"That deep emotional conviction of the presence of a superior reasoning power, which is revealed in the incomprehensible universe, forms my idea of God."

– Albert Einstein

"Wisdom, compassion, and courage are the three universally recognized moral qualities of men."

– Confucius

"To be wronged is nothing unless you continue to remember it."

– Confucius

"When I stopped living in the problem and began living in the answer, the problem went away."

– Anonymous

"To this day, I am amazed at how many of my problems - most of which had nothing to do with drinking, I believed - have become manageable or have simply disappeared since I quit drinking."

– Anonymous

"We should be sensible, tactful, considerate and humble without being servile or scraping. As God's people we stand on our feet; we don't crawl before anyone."

– Anonymous

"We cannot subscribe to the belief that this life is a vale of tears, though it once was just that for many of us. But it is clear that we make our own misery."

– Anonymous

"In all these strivings, so many of them well-intentioned, our crippling handicap had been our lack of humility. We had lacked the perspective to see that character-building and spiritual values had to come first, and that material satisfactions were not the purpose of living."

– Anonymous

"Definition of an alcoholic is an egomaniac with an inferiority complex."

– Anonymous

The Twelve Traditions of Alcoholics Anonymous

Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon AA unity.

This tradition speaks to us about AA unity and the great importance it has in our program. Without it AA dies. It grants us individual liberty based upon obedience to spiritual principles.

  • We cannot stay sober without unity.
  • We become obedient to spiritual principles.
  • We strive for the common cause.
  • We work together as groups, and live sober.
Click here to read more about Tradition One.

For our group purpose there is but one ultimate authority - a loving God as He may express Himself in our group conscience. Our leaders are but trusted servants; they do not govern.

From the formation. growth, rotation, and general guidance all comes from a loving God as He expresses Himself to be in each of our groups conscience. No one authority governs.

  • We do not have priests, or deacons to guide us..
  • We allow God to express Himself in our group conscience.
  • We have no "super-sober" elders that govern.
  • We have the real, and substantial leadership of God in our groups or the group fall apart.
Click here to read more about Tradition Two.

The only requirement for AA membership is a desire to stop drinking.

We learn to tolerate even the most hardened drinkers because as long as they have a desire to stop they have a place with us in AA. Even when they attend meetings while they are still drinking.

  • We have tolerance for others.
  • We believe all should have the opportunity to get sober through AA.
  • We have no regulations concerning who is, or is not an alcoholic.
  • We believe that AA is a choice through desire, not assignment.
Click here to read more about Tradition Three.

Each group should be autonomous except in matters affecting other groups or AA as a whole.

This tradion addresses how we must maintain a certain "distance" from what each group does and how it may affect other groups in AA. This is how we can have socialy orientated groups for such identities as gender, ethnicity, language, religion, etc. We all still use the text "Alcoholics Anonymous", and conform to the framework described by AA World Services.

  • We use autonomy to express ourselves in our AA groups.
  • We set the format of our groups according to AA and our group social construct.
  • We place no liability for our group actions upon AA as a whole or other AA groups.
  • We believe every group has the right to be wrong.
Click here to read more about Tradition Four.

Each group has but one primary purpose - to carry it's message to the alcoholic who still suffers.

This tradition is probably the most important principle of all our traditions because without it we would likely fall apart. This tradition allows us to identify with the newcomer and pass on this gift from God.

  • We cannot keep our gift of sobriety without giving it all away.
  • We see the newcomer as ourselves in our past.
  • This is our one aim,... to pass it on.
  • We allow ourselves to open up to be seen in our new life of sobriety.
Click here to read more about Tradition Five.

An AA group ought never to endorse, finance, or lend the AA name to any related facility or outside enterprise, lest problems of money, property, or prestige divert us from our primary purpose.

This AA cannot embark in a path of favoritism to any other organization, or entity. This includes religion, hospitals, institutions, of governments. We choose to be distanced from such entities because it could, and most like would divert us from helping the alcoholic who still suffers.

  • We seek to be spiritual, but do not endorse specific religions.
  • We know that alcoholics sometimes need professional help, but do not endorse recovery facilities.
  • We follow the "law of the land", but do not endorse any government. We are an international organization.
  • We stay focused on helping other alcoholics, not getting support from outside organizations.
Click here to read more about Tradition Six.

Every AA group ought to be fully self-supporting, declining outside contributions.

We learned early on that a lot of money didn't mean a lot of sobriety, or serenity.  We do not want to be obliged to anyone. We are accountable to God. This tradition has carried us through even the toughest ecnomic times. It has proven that our survival is not based on large coffers being full. A stream-lined budget, and prudent reserve are all we really need to survive.

  • We do not take gifts in the form of endowments, donations, or other properties from outside organizations or people.
  • We start new groups in collective poverty by necessity.
  • We build prudent reserves in each of our groups.
  • We do not keep excessive amounts of money, we pass it up to regional, and world service organizations.
Click here to read more about Tradition Seven.

Alcoholics Anonymous should remain forever non-professional, but our service centers may employ special workers.

Twelfth step work is never paid for, but those who are hired in service for the AA organization are needed, and paid. They are accountants, office professionals, managers, communications specialists, etc. They are not affiliated with AA in the traditional sense of the word "AA member".

  • We require non-member professionals to operate our organization.
  • We don't want them to perform twelfth step work because they are paid employees.
  • We can't mix money and twelfth step work. It's not a "service" if we are paid for it.
  • We separate "professional AA's" from "professional workers".
Click here to read more about Tradition Eight.

A.A., as such, ought never be organized; but we may create service boards or committees directly responsible to those they serve.

We alcoholics can't be ordered, or directed to do anything. Not individually, not as a group, or as a whole. Our service boards and committees only suggest paths for us to take.

  • We are free to choose as we please, but we look for suggestions to meet our goals.
  • We embrace the freedom of choice in our groups, and as individuals.
  • In A.A., we realize that being a "formal" organization can never be fruitful to our purpose.
  • We cultivate an atmosphere of mutual, and group choices based on suggestions by our committees and boards.
Click here to read more about Tradition Nine.

Alcoholics Anonymous has no opinion on outside issues; hence the A.A. name ought never be drawn into public controversy.

This tradition addresses the politics, religion, and other controversial issues that affect our society in general. We simply don't have the time or luxury for outside controversy.

  • We do not debate outside issues in A.A. groups, but there are some groups based on politics, religion, etc..
  • We do not support public sentiments in our groups, we don't desire to fight against one another.
  • We do not use A.A. as a badge of honor in outside issues.
  • A.A. as a society, and in our inividual groups never take a side concerning any outside issue.
Click here to read more about Tradition Ten.

Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press radio and films.

This is our public relations policy for alcoholics. If we promote A.A. in press, radio, and films, we risk the chance that someone, or something will eventually cause a controversey about an outside issue, or about our society. We choose to attract prospects through our example.

  • We live the A.A. principles in our lives as an example to others..
  • We endeavor to display worthy human character.
  • We do not stand on a "soapbox" to attract others into our fellowship.
  • Like this website, we only make the information available to those seeking help. We never send out promotionals, etc..
Click here to read more about Tradition Eleven.

Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before personalities.

This tradition tells us how important our anonymity is to our spirituality. It is the selfless tradition. This is because, as humans, we all want credit, and we all want to be known for our accomplishments. There is no place for that in our society. Famous people rise and fall, if they fall while being a known member of A.A. we may lose other prospective members.

  • Doctors, lawyers, and celebrities of all sorts are counted as our members, but do not reveal this fact.
  • The principles of A.A. must always come first no matter who we are.
  • Our decision to help a sick alcoholic must always be based on principles, not personalities. Just because we may not like a person, doesn't mean we don't help them.
  • Personal character tolerance, and the concept of "Live and let live" must prevail here in order to help others.
Click here to read more about Tradition Twelve.