Recovery Month – Day 20 – Take Action

Action is the foundational key to all success.

— Pablo Picaso —

September is National Recovery Month.

My blogs will focus throughout September on addiction and its life-destroying tendencies. The writings derive from my experiences of battling addiction and living a life of recovery.

These specific writings are focused on the ACT acronym.

ACT leads to sobriety…

A – Acknowledge you have a problem, are powerless over it, and need help.

– Connect with a power greater than you and people with solutions to help you conquer your problem.

T – Take positive, recovery-oriented action every day.

For the past two and a half weeks, we’ve been looking at the Acknowledge and Connect stages of ACT. Today we begin a deep dive into the most critical stage of staying sober: to Take positive, recovery-oriented action every day.

Today’s post is a continuation of Sunday’s.

People have asked me what the most critical moment in my recovery was. I have two.

The first one was my three-word prayer without any strings attached…GOD HELP ME! At that moment, I Acknowledged I needed help and was Connecting to the ultimate source of help. (Notice I said “moment,” as we addicts fall in and out of moments like that. One minute we admit we need help, and the next minute we run from help).

The second occurred around 9 pm on August 9, 1987, when I climbed into the back seat of my boss’s 1985 Ford Country Squire Station Wagon. I was about to be transported by my boss, my wife, and Rusty to Greene Hall Treatment Center, 45 miles away.

At that moment, I was Taking my first positive, recovery-oriented action step of many.

Albeit the action was taken begrudgingly and for all the wrong reasons.

If there is one thing, I know in life, nothing good happens without taking action.

The other day I received a text from my daughter, who will soon turn 35. Yes, she’s the child my wife and I were expecting when all hell broke loose in our lives.

She shared with my wife and me some great news about her job. She indicated that all of her hard work had paid off. I congratulated her and texted, “Hard work will never fail you.”

That response to my daughter was bound by almost 35 years of meaningful thoughts, memories, and moments. It was a response she was used to receiving from a very present dad in her and her brothers’ lives—a dad who cherished being there for his kids in victories and disappointments.

It is very sobering for me to think how close I came to never seeing my daughter, let alone exchanging texts with her into her adulthood.

So, what’s the point?

As I stated earlier, nothing good in life happens without taking action.

We can Acknowledge we need help and Connect with God and others who can help us, but if we don’t take action, nothing will change.

My willingness to Take action well beyond stepping into that 85′ Ford station wagon to keep my disease in check is why I’m still alive, happy, joyous, free, and writing blogs and exchanging text messages with my family today.

More to follow tomorrow.

Is there something you’ve Acknowledged that needs to be changed in your life?

Have you Connected with others with experience who can give you the tools to change?

If you’ve said yes, to the first two questions and still haven’t been able to change, it is most likely because you’ve failed to Take positive action.

One small step in the right direction is exponentially better than doing nothing…I write from experience.

James 2:18, “But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works.”


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