Mark, Joe, Spencer, and Russ share their gratitude during this U.S. Holiday season of Thanksgiving. Russ and Mark both agree that Gratitude is one of the most important tools in their tool box of recovery. Joe shared that one of the first things he learned in recovery was Gratitude. Joe shared that early in his program he heard Mike O. always opened his share with the statement, “If I stay grateful, I’ll stay sober.” Joe shared that if he admits that many things are out of his control, this realization helps him to stay grateful. Joe shared that he uses pen and paper to form his gratitude list. He makes a physical list and he still has the first one he made in recovery. The things that are on that original list, he is still grateful for.
Spencer, an Al-anon, was not grateful when he first came into the program, although he heard a lot of others say they were. But now, he is grateful to be a member of Al-anon. Spencer shared his gratitude tool takes the form of a mental list. When he has difficulty falling asleep, he uses that alphabet starting with the letter A and thinks of something he is grateful for that begins with the letter A. Spencer said that he has always fallen asleep before he reaches the letter Z.
Russ shared that he also uses an alphabet approach to his gratitude list, especially when he is driving his car. Russ shared that he uses meetings to keep gratitude alive in his program. Talking and sharing helps him to stay grounded and stay grateful.
We shared that gratitude is the result of something we do. When we start to feel down during this holiday season, we have found that making a list, going to a meeting, talking to someone, always helps us to stay grateful and our spirits are lifted.