NA Just For Today


#41

May 30

Loneliness vs. being alone

Sharing with others keeps us from feeling isolated and alone.

Basic Text, p. 85

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There is a difference between being alone and being lonely. Being lonely is a state of the heart, an emptiness that makes us feel sad and sometimes hopeless. Loneliness is not always alleviated when we enter into relationships or surround ourselves with others. Some of us are lonely even in a room full of people.

Many of us came to Narcotics Anonymous out of the desperate loneliness of our addiction. After coming to meetings, we begin to make new friends, and often our feelings of loneliness ease. But many of us must contend with loneliness throughout our recovery.

What is the cure for loneliness? The best cure is to begin a relationship with a Higher Power that can help fill the emptiness of our heart. We find that when we have a belief in a Higher Power, we never have to feel lonely. We can be alone more comfortably when we have a conscious contact with a God of our understanding.

We often find deep fulfillment in our interactions with others as we progress in our recovery. Yet we also find that, the closer we draw to our Higher Power, the less we need to surround ourselves with others. We begin to find a spirit within us that is our constant companion as we continue to explore and deepen our connection with a Power greater than ourselves. We realize we are spiritually connected with something bigger than we are.

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Just for today: I will take comfort in my conscious contact with a Higher Power. I am never alone.

Copyright 1991-2016 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved


#42

May 31

Keep it simple

We live a day at a time but also from moment to moment. When we stop living in the here and now, our problems become magnified unreasonably.

Basic Text, p. 99

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Life often seems too complicated to understand, especially for those of us whove dodged it for so long. When we stopped using drugs, many of us came face to face with a world that was confusing, even terrifying. Looking at life and all its details, all at once, may be overwhelming. We think that maybe we cant handle life after all and that its useless to try. These thoughts feed themselves, and pretty soon were paralyzed by the imagined complexity of life.

Happily, we dont have to fix everything at once. Solving a single problem seems possible, so we take them one at a time. We take care of each moment as it comes, and then take care of the next moment as it comes. We learn to stay clean just for today, and we approach our problems the same way. When we live life in each moment, its not such a terrifying prospect. One breath at a time, we can stay clean and learn to live.

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Just for today: I will keep it simple by living in this moment only. Today, I will tackle only todays problems; I will leave tomorrows problems to tomorrow.

Copyright 1991-2016 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved


#43

I really love all this just for today. I apply them to the addiction which attacks me


#44

NA trys to write them in a way which can be applied to more than drugs, even though that’s our particular symptom. Addiction is a thinking disease that comes in all varieties.


#45

June 1

Keep coming back

We dont have to be clean when we get here but, after the first meeting, we suggest that newcomers keep coming back and come back clean. We dont have to wait for an overdose or a jail sentence to get help from Narcotics Anonymous.

Basic Text, pp. 10-11

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Very few of us arrive in NA brimming with willingness. Some of us are here because we are court-ordered to attend. Some have come to save our families. Some come in an effort to salvage a career teetering on the brink of ruin. It doesnt matter why we are here. It only matters that we are.

We have heard it said that if we bring the body, the mind will follow. We may come to meetings with a chip on our shoulders. We may be one of those who sits in the back of the rooms with our arms folded across our chest, glaring threateningly at anyone who approaches us. Perhaps we leave before the final prayer.

But if we keep coming back, we find that our minds begin to open up. We start to drop our guard, and begin to really listen when others share. We may even hear someone talking with whom we can relate. We begin the process of change.

After some time in NA, we find that more than our minds have arrived in our meeting rooms. More importantly, our hearts have arrived, too. After that happens, the miracles really begin!

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Just for today: I will strive to listen with an open mind to what I hear shared.

Copyright 1991-2016 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved


#46

June 2

Sick and tired

We wanted an easy way out… When we did seek help, we were only looking for the absence of pain.

Basic Text, p. 5

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Somethings not working. In fact, somethings been wrong for a long time, causing us pain and complicating our lives. The problem is that, at any given moment, it always appears easier to continue bearing the pain of our defects than to submit to the total upheaval involved in changing the way we live. We may long to be free of pain, but only rarely are we willing to do whats truly necessary to remove the source of pain from our lives.

Most of us didnt begin seeking recovery from addiction until we were sick and tired of being tired and sick. The same is true of the lingering character defects weve carried through our lives. Only when we cant bear our shortcomings one moment longer, only when we know that the pain of change cant be as bad as the pain were in today, are most of us willing to try something different.

Thankfully, the steps are always there, no matter what were sick and tired of. The irony is that, as soon as we make the decision to begin the Twelve Step process, we realize our fears of change were groundless. The steps offer a gentle program of change, one step at a time. No single step is so frightening that we cant work it, by itself. As we apply the steps to our lives, we experience a change that frees us.

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Just for today: No matter what prevents me from living a full, happy life, I know the program can help me change, a step at a time. I need not be afraid of the Twelve Steps.

Copyright 1991-2016 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved


#47

June 3

Direct and indirect amends

We make our amends to the best of our ability.

Basic Text, p. 40

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The Ninth Step tells us to make direct amends wherever possible. Our experience tells us to follow up those direct amends with long-lasting changes in our attitudes and our behaviorthat is, with indirect amends.

For example, say weve broken someones window because we were angry. Looking soulfully into the eyes of the person whose window weve broken and apologizing would not be sufficient. We directly amend the wrong weve done by admitting it and replacing the windowwe mend what we have damaged.

Then, we follow up our direct amends with indirect amends. If weve acted out on our anger, breaking someones window, we examine the patterns of our behavior and our attitudes. After we repair the broken window, we seek to repair our broken attitudes as wellwe try to mend our ways. We modify our behavior, and make a daily effort not to act out on our anger.

We make direct amends by repairing the damage we do. We make indirect amends by repairing the attitudes that cause us to do damage in the first place, helping insure we wont cause further damage in the future.

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Just for today: I will make direct amends, wherever possible. I will also make indirect amends, mending my ways, changing my attitudes, and altering my behavior.

Copyright 1991-2016 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved


#48

June 4

Build, dont destroy

Our negative sense of self has been replaced by a positive concern for others.

Basic Text, p. 16

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Spreading gossip feeds a dark hunger in us. Sometimes we think the only way we can feel good about ourselves is to make someone else look bad by comparison. But the kind of self-esteem that can be purchased at anothers expense is hollow and not worth the price.

How, then, do we deal with our negative sense of self? Simple. We replace it with a positive concern for others. Rather than dwell on our low self-esteem, we turn to those around us and seek to be of service to them.

This may seem to be a way of avoiding the issue, but its not. Theres nothing we can do by dwelling on our low sense of self except work ourselves into a stew of self-pity. But by replacing our self-pity with active, loving concern for others, we become the kind of people we can respect.

The way to build our self-esteem is not to tear others down, but to build them up through love and positive concern. To help us with this, we can ask ourselves if we are contributing to the problem or to the solution. Today, we can choose to build instead of destroy.

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Just for today: Though I may be feeling low, I dont need to tear someone down to build myself up. Today, I will replace my negative sense of self with a positive concern for others. I will build, not destroy.

Copyright 1991-2016 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved


#49

June 5

Honest prayer

Although honesty is difficult to practice, it is most rewarding.

Basic Text, p. 96

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How difficult we find it to be honest! Many of us come to NA so confused about what really happened in our lives that it sometimes takes months and years to sort it all out. The truth of our history is not always as we have told it. How can we begin to be more truthful?

Many of us find it the easiest to be honest in prayer. With our fellow addicts, we sometimes find that we have a hard time telling the whole truth. We feel certain that we wont be accepted if we let others know us as we really are. Its hard to live up to the terminally hip and fatally cool image so many of us portrayed! In prayer, we find an acceptance from our Higher Power that allows us to open our hearts with honesty.

As we practice this honesty with the God of our understanding, we often find that it has a ripple effect in our communications with others. We get in the habit of being honest. We begin to practice honesty when we share at meetings and work with others. In return, we find our lives enriched by deepening friendships. We even find that we can be more honest with ourselves, the most important person to be truthful with!

Honesty is a quality that is developed through practice. It isnt always easy to be totally truthful, but when we begin with our Higher Power, we find it easier to extend our honesty to others.

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Just for today: I will be honest with God, myself, and others.

Copyright 1991-2016 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved


#50

June 6

Recovery doesnt happen overnight

The Twelve Steps of Narcotics Anonymous are a progressive recovery process established in our daily living.

Basic Text, p. 99

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After some time in recovery, we may find we are faced with what seem like overwhelming personal problems, angry feelings, and despair. When we realize whats going on, we may wail, But Ive been working so hard. I thought I was… Recovered, maybe? Not hardly. Over and over, we hear that recovery is an ongoing process and that we are never cured. Yet we sometimes believe that if we just work our steps enough, pray enough, or go to enough meetings, well eventually… well, maybe not be cured, but be something!

And we are something. Were recoveringrecovering from active addiction. No matter what weve dealt with through the process of the steps, there will always be more. What we didnt remember or didnt think was important in our first inventory will surely present itself later on. Again and again, well turn to the process of the steps to deal with whats bothering us. The more we use this process, the more well trust it, for we can see the results. We go from anger and resentment to forgiveness, from denial to honesty and acceptance, and from pain to serenity.

Recovery doesnt happen overnight, and ours will never be complete. But each day brings new healing and the hope for more tomorrow.

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Just for today: I will do what I can for my recovery today and maintain hope in the ongoing process of recovery.

Copyright 1991-2016 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved


#51

June 7

Someone who believes in me

Just for today, I will have faith in someone in NA who believes in me and wants to help me in my recovery.

Basic Text, p. 100

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Not all of us arrive in NA and automatically stay clean. But if we keep coming back, we find in Narcotics Anonymous the support we need for our recovery. Staying clean is easier when we have someone who believes in us even when we dont believe in ourselves.

Even the most frequent relapser in NA usually has one staunch supporter who is always there, no matter what. It is imperative that we find that one person or group of people who believes in us. When we ask them if we will ever get clean, they will always reply, Yes, you can and you will. Just keep coming back!

We all need someone who believes in us, especially when we cant believe in ourselves. When we relapse, we undermine our already shattered self-confidence, sometimes so badly that we begin to feel utterly hopeless. At such times, we need the support of our loyal NA friends. They tell us that this can be our last relapse. They know from experience that if we keep coming to meetings, we will eventually get clean and stay clean.

Its hard for many of us to believe in ourselves. But when someone loves us unconditionally, offering support no matter how many times weve relapsed, recovery in NA becomes a little more real for us.

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Just for today: I will find someone who believes in me. I will believe in them.

Copyright 1991-2016 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved


#52

June 9

Old dreams neednt die

Lost dreams awaken and new possibilities arise.

Basic Text, p. 91

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Most of us had dreams when we were young. Whether we dreamed of a dynamic career, a large and loving family, or travels abroad, our dreams died when our addiction took hold. Anything we ever wanted for ourselves was cast away in our pursuit of drugs. Our dreams didnt go beyond the next drug and the euphoria we hoped it would bring.

Now in recovery, we find a reason to hope that our lost dreams could still come true. No matter how old we are, how much our addiction has taken from us, or how unlikely it may seem, our freedom from active addiction gives us the freedom to pursue our ambitions. We may discover that were very talented at something, or find a hobby we love, or learn that continuing our education can bring remarkable rewards.

We used to put most of our energy into spinning excuses and rationalizations for our failures. Today, we go forward and make use of the many opportunities life presents to us. We may be amazed at what were capable of. With our foundation of recovery, success, fulfillment, and satisfaction are within our reach at last.

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Just for today: Starting today, Ill do whatever I can to realize my dreams.

Copyright 1991-2016 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved


#53

June 10

Changing motives

When we finally get our own selfish motives out of the way, we begin to find a peace that we never imagined possible.

Basic Text, p. 45

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As we examine our beliefs, our actions, and our motives in recovery, well find that sometimes we do things for the wrong reasons. In our early recovery, we may have spent a great deal of money and time on people, wanting only for them to like us. Later on, we may find that we still spend money on people, but our motives have changed. We do it because we like them. Or perhaps we used to get romantically involved because we felt hollow inside and were seeking fulfillment through another person. Now our reasons for romantic involvement are based in a desire to share our already rewarding lives with an equal partner. Maybe we used to work the steps because we were afraid wed relapse if we didnt. Today we work the steps because we want to grow spiritually.

We have a new purpose in life today, and our changing motives reflect that. We have so much more to offer than our neediness and insecurities. We have developed a wholesomeness of spirit and a peace of mind that moves our recovery into a new realm. We extend our love and share our recovery with complete generosity, and the difference we make is the legacy we leave to those who have yet to join us.

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Just for today: In recovery, my motives have changed. I want to do things for the right reason, not just for my personal benefit. Today, I will examine my motives.

Copyright 1991-2016 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved


#54

June 13

A full life

The program works a miracle in our lives… We become free to live.

Basic Text, p. 11

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Most of usif weve been in recovery for any length of time at allhave heard some member complaining in a meeting about being terribly overworked, too busy for meetings or sponsorship or other activities. In fact, we may have been the complaining member. The days seem so full: job, family and friends, meetings, activities, sponsorship, step work. There just arent enough hours in the day, the member complains, to get everything done and meet everyones demands on my time!

When this happens, usually theres soft laughter from some of the other membersprobably members who had planned to grumble about the same sort of thing. The laughter stems from our recognition that we are complaining about the miracle of the life that is ours today. Not so long ago, few of us were capable of having any of these problems in our life. We devoted all of our energy to maintaining our active addiction. Today we have full lives, complete with all the feelings and problems that go with living in reality.

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Just for today: I will remember that my life is a miracle. Instead of resenting how busy I am, I will be thankful my life is so full.

Copyright 1991-2016 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved


#55

Thanks for posting


#56

June 15

Resistance to change

Many of us cling to our fears, doubts, self-loathing, or hatred because there is a certain distorted security in familiar pain. It seems safer to embrace what we know than to let go of it for the unknown.

Basic Text, p. 34

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We have often heard it said that when the pain of remaining the same becomes greater than the pain of changing, we will change. Our fear can keep us from growing, afraid to end relationships, change careers, attend new meetings, begin new friendships, or attempt anything out of the ordinary. We stay in situations that are no longer working far longer than we have to simply because what is familiar feels safer than the unknown.

Any change involves overcoming fear. What if Im alone forever? we might think if we consider leaving our lover. What if I find out Im incompetent? we may wonder when we contemplate changing careers. We may balk at attending new meetings because we will have to reach out. Our minds manufacture a hundred excuses for remaining right where we are, afraid to try something new.

We find that most of our pain comes not from change but from resistance to change. In NA, we learn that change is how we move forward in our lives. New friends, new relationships, new interests and challenges will replace the old. With these new things in our lives, we find new joys and loves.

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Just for today: I will release the old, embrace the new, and grow.

Copyright 1991-2016 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved


#57

June 17

Walls

Reaching out is the beginning of the struggle that will set us free. It will break down the walls that imprison us.

Basic Text, p. 83

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Many of us came to NA emotionally shattered. Years of using people and allowing them to use us had taken their toll on our ability to trust anyone, ourselves included. But the love and acceptance we found in Narcotics Anonymous encouraged us to reach out and get close to others.

The longer we stayed clean, the more we began to long for greater intimacy with our loved ones. We began reaching out in deeper, more meaningful ways, even though we might get hurt. Despite our fears of rejection, we decided to risk revealing ourselves, our beliefs, and our needs. We decided to let down our defensive walls.

The freedom weve found has been worth the risk involved. We know there is still work to do before we will be completely free of the barriers built by years of active addiction. But by reaching out to other addicts and allowing them to reach out to us, despite our human failings, we have come to know that we have a great capacity for love and intimacy. When set free of their restraining walls, our hearts hold great power.

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Just for today: I will let down my personal walls and reach out to others. I will allow my heart the freedom to love and be loved.

Copyright 1991-2016 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved


#58

June 22

Accepting life as it is

In our recovery, we find it essential to accept reality. Once we can do this, we do not find it necessary to use drugs in an attempt to change our perceptions.

Basic Text, p. 90

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Drugs used to buffer us from the full force of life. When we stop using drugs and enter recovery, we find ourselves confronted directly with life. We may experience disappointment, frustration, or anger. Events may not happen the way we want them to. The self-centeredness we cultivated in our addiction has distorted our perceptions of life; it is difficult to let go of our expectations and accept life as it is.

We learn to accept our lives by working the Twelve Steps of Narcotics Anonymous. We discover how to change our attitudes and let go of character defects. We no longer need to distort the truth or to run from situations. The more we practice the spiritual principles contained in the steps, the easier it becomes to accept life exactly as it comes to us.

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Just for today: I will practice self-acceptance by practicing the Twelve Steps.

Copyright 1991-2016 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved


#59

June 26

Surrendering self-will

Our fears are lessened and faith begins to grow as we learn the true meaning of surrender. We are no longer fighting fear, anger, guilt, self-pity, or depression.

Basic Text, p. 27

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Surrender is the beginning of a new way of life. When driven primarily by self-will, we constantly wondered whether wed covered all the bases, whether wed manipulated that person in just the right way to achieve our ends, whether wed missed a critical detail in our efforts to control and manage the world. We either felt afraid, fearing our schemes would fail; angry or self-pitying when they fell through; or guilty when we pulled them off. It was hard, living on self-will, but we didnt know any other way.

Not that surrender is always easy. On the contrary, surrender can be difficult, especially in the beginning. Still, its easier to trust God, a Power capable of managing our lives, than to trust only ourselves, whose lives are unmanageable. And the more we surrender, the easier it gets.

When we turn our will and our lives over to the care of our Higher Power, all we have to do is our part, as responsibly and conscientiously as we can. Then we can leave the results up to our Higher Power. By surrendering, acting on faith, and living our lives according to the simple spiritual principles of this program, we can stop worrying and start living.

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Just for today: I will surrender self-will. I will seek knowledge of Gods will for me and the power to carry it out. I will leave the results in my Higher Powers hands.

Copyright 1991-2016 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved


#61

I’m in the middle of my third step and was thinking the same thing