Alcoholics Anonymous is a life-changing endeavor for someone suffering from addiction. The shared experiences and deep bonds help create lasting and meaningful recovery. These programs also sustain longevity through their reciprocal nature. Many “put back” into the program. If you are wondering about the next chapter of your recovery, consider giving back to such recovery programs by becoming a sponsor. This next chapter could prove to be the most compelling in your recovery yet because you are helping to carry the torch of recovery to a new generation by sharing your wisdom and experience, as well as hearing about similar and different experiences that newer generations face today. So, if you are wondering about your next step, look back to where your journey to recovery once began and consider becoming a sponsor.
Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) is designed to help you cope with the challenges that come with your addiction. Through these programs, you will attain the tools necessary to stay sober. It is a fellowship founded on unity, service, and recovery. If you attend AA and have gone through or are currently going through the 12 Step program, you understand that this program is not only vital to your recovery but also provides empowerment that motivates you to discover untapped potential from within.
AA hinges on a support system and sponsorship. Utilizing these facets provides the best opportunity for recovery. When bonds are made, they are often made forever, as each individual can rely on the other and share support and accountability with one another. Because experiences vary between people in recovery, there is always something new to learn.
Maintaining recovery is a lifelong pursuit. Being sober and healthy is great, but that does not mean you are recovered. Life carries on and challenges outside of your comfort zone occur. Sometimes relapse happens when you don’t prepare for the next step and become complacent in your routine. Shutting down opportunities for growth in mind and health could also shut you off from people and activities in your life that once made you feel good. This could turn boredom into isolation into relapse. This is why when you create a recovery regimen, you want to include activities that build on themselves, offering new goals and challenges. You also want to keep an open mind, seeking the next best way to sustain your recovery, and maybe that is becoming a sponsor.
Think about when you took the chance to get help and attended your AA first meeting. Certainly you were feeling many emotions–apprehension, fear, excitement, and maybe even resentment. Look at where you’re at now. Why is that? Was it because you worked with a sponsor who helped make you feel understood? Did you ultimately bring structure and meaning back to your life? The power of guidance through understanding is unlike any other. When people come together with the same goals and shared experiences, the opportunity to thrive is in your favor.
Becoming a Good Sponsor
To become a sponsor, you must first have practiced and managed sobriety in your life. Learning through these trials will help create the kind of patience, understanding, and compassion that is needed to help guide someone new through their early recovery. You will need to be willing to share your experiences, even if, at times, you need to express vulnerability to do so, but this is about creating a bond through trust—much like with your sponsor.
Guidance is the key—never judge or try to reprimand somebody just because they did not do things exactly how you did. And you should never take things personally if they don’t take all of your advice. Remember, while you may share some experiences, this person’s path to recovery is unique to them. This is a venture founded in morals and inner character, and using your morals and discovering theirs through actions and choices could further help you understand where each of you stands.
Benefits of Being a Sponsor
Becoming a sponsor not only helps to continue the mission of providing recovery and growth for all suffering from addiction, it will also return to you all the benefits from when you were under the wing of a sponsor. You will again share experiences, share strength and hope, by being there to listen, promote accountability for both parties, and challenge yourself in new ways.
Working with a younger adult might even educate you on new and different challenges that are presented by society and culture today. This kind of resource is excellent to help you keep contributing to evolving the efforts of treatment as society evolves and it prevents you from resenting youth by thinking they don’t have it as difficult. Your understanding helps them and helps you. It also reminds you of how valuable sobriety is.
You’re only ever one drink away from threatening your sobriety. Conversely, your sobriety is always upheld when you refuse the opportunity to have that first drink. Sometimes the best way to help yourself is to help others. Reconnecting yourself with the struggles of starting sobriety from a different perspective will help you appreciate where you’re at and motivate you to look out for another person. Your experiences and understanding with addiction and sobriety stand a better chance of helping someone remain sober. This is because people in recovery are more willing to listen to someone who has been through it rather than someone who hasn’t. If you find it hard to take that next step and are uncertain if you are cut out to be a sponsor, or if you’re just feeling aimless and thinking that you can handle having a drink, then it is time to get help.
True Recovery offers 24/7 help and will provide the guidance needed to meet your concerns and struggles. True Recovery has a staff of people who have, at some point, shared your concerns and feelings; this is because many understand the trials and tribulations of what it takes to remain sober. To learn more, call us today at (866) 399-6528.