What is your story?
Billions of dollars (25.9 in 2022) are taken in annually at theater box offices around the globe, while television revenue exceeds 200 billion per year. Books remain a viable outlet as sales top 80 billion annually. Independent online content is too massive to be tracked, but one can assume the numbers are staggering.
The statistics above indicate that people like a good story.
The sober community is full of good stories. Stories of tragedy turned into triumph. Stories of redemption. Complex stories. Stories of transformation. Emotional stories. Stories of hurt that became hope. Love stories. Stories that educate. Sad stories. Entertaining stories. Achievement stories. Stories of the underdog done good. Stories that inspire.
Recovery is the greatest story on earth.
Every story has “a core”. We gain guidance when we allow ourselves to connect to that core and the elements that make up the whole. We define direction based on first-hand discovery.
Staying plugged into the sober space keeps us close to the core of real life. When we observe with intent, a world of stimulus and motivation unfolds. The message gains meaning and drives us to act toward a better outcome. If we allow, we reflect the good.
We are so thankful to the founding fathers of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), who put much emphasis on meeting with fellow alcoholics to share experience, strength, and hope. This happens one-on-one and in group settings at almost every corner of creation. What started as a single group of men in Akron, Ohio, in 1935AD has mushroomed into a global network of over 125,000 meetings (as of 2023).
We made a practice of continual meeting attendance since we got sober years ago. At first, we went because we were told to go. It was suggested to us that if we plugged into the power of support, there was a possibility that we could be cured of the drink problem. Since this was our desire, we did what was advised. It worked. Today, we go to grow. We go to support the next person walking through the door. We go because it has worked for us, and we wish recovery for the next struggling alcoholic.
The narrative that fills the rooms is relevant to our path toward recovery because we allow it to be. We listen carefully for clues to unlock a better life. The conversations in and around the sessions support all those involved because of the raw honesty transmitted and the relatable scenarios that we face or will face.
For us, the transformation began when we shifted from talking to listening. When we opened our ears and minds to the message, questions turned to answers, distraction to direction, and confusion to clarity.
Once that key has been shaped, it becomes our responsibility to hand it off to those who seek serenity. Our stories become their lighthouse. Our tale becomes their trail. Their path becomes our purpose.
AA may not be a billion-dollar organization, but the output is far more valuable. Lives are being saved, relationships healed, and fulfillment found. This doesn’t happen without working together. This doesn’t happen without the stories.
What is your story?
Thoughts and ideas for this blog post were taken and built upon from a sober.coffee podcast titled “A Work Of Fiction - with Author Will Thatcher”….The podcast dropped on 10/25/2023. Click here to hear the podcast.
Alcoholics Anonymous and AA are registered trademarks of Alcoholics World Service. Inc. References to AA, the 12 steps, and 12 traditions does not mean that AA has reviewed or approved the contents of this publication nor that AA agrees with the views expressed herein. This publication is intended to support personal growth and should not be considered a substitute for healthcare professionals' advice. The author’s advice and viewpoints are their own.