First Things First

Just because you are struggling does NOT mean you are failing.  Every great success requires some kind of struggle to get there. -Unknown

The title of this post also happened to be the topic of the meeting I run on Monday mornings.  I picked it because I was going to take my new sponsee to the meeting with me, and I wanted a topic that helped me in early sobriety.  As it turns out, she had to reschedule… disappointing, but it was still a great topic, and a great meeting!

“First things first” is one of the most common slogans in Alcoholics Anonymous, it would be hard to find a meeting that doesn’t have it posted somewhere in the room.  For alcoholics, this expression means, quite simply, that not taking a drink or drug has to be our top priority.  We must take all steps necessary to achieve this goal before we do anything else in life.  Spouses, children, jobs, finances… all fall in line behind sobriety.  Whatever is placed above sobriety will ultimately be lost.

As with most things related to recovery, this slogan helps me in so many other areas of my life.  “First things first,” initially, meant figuring out and then executing what I needed to do to not pick up a drink or drug.  But as that process got easier, “first things first” helped when any life situation overwhelmed me.  When kids had homework, dinner needed to be made, and I was in the middle of cleaning, “first things first” reminded me to take a deep breath, bullet point what needed to be done, and check things off in order of their importance.  The bathroom can wait when dinner needs to be on the table, and the book report can be put off when there is a test the next morning.  It sounds simplistic, but when there is a lot going on, it is easy to get so caught up in the craziness of life that nothing gets done.  “First things first” is a mental reset button that I can push anytime I am dealing with stress.

Here’s hoping that everyone reading can put their own “first things first” today!

Today’s Miracle:

Absorbing the collective wisdom of a group of recovering alcoholics, and then passing that wisdom along, is the gift that keeps on giving!

Posted on February 11, 2013, in Monday Meeting Miracles and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. Great post! So much going on with so few words, eh? I like how you broke down “First things first” – fantastic. You can read as much or as little as you want with a lot of the slogans, and it seems to change, the longer you are sober. First thing for me was just not having that first drink. Today, it’s putting God first in all my plans and affairs. When I leave Him out, things go awry. It’s also, for me, what you said about prioritizing things. Dishes can wait sometimes. What’s important?

    Love it – and congrats on your sponsee – what a journey that becomes too 🙂


  2. Having trouble figuring what comes first — today! Oh well, I feel like God is first and he’ll just let me know when I get there (what to do next). I’m so used to ultra-planning my life that this living in the moment is strange. Again, I see a new level of surrender. btw: Your sponsee is fortunate to have you for a sponsor, in my opinion. love and hugs


  3. Reblogged this on Gonzalez Recovery Residences and commented:
    Quality recovery blogging!


  4. What a great post on a great sentiment. Reminds me of my other favorite AA quote: Whatever you place before your sobriety, be prepared to lose.


  5. This is one of my favorite slogans! I am one to have trouble setting priorities and when I’m overwhelmed its because I’ve made every individual thing a top priority. And of course I can’t do that. So I think of first things first and it helps put a better hierarchy to my priority to do list.


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