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Easy Does It

It took her a long time slow down and turn things over

There are so many slogans in AA. Some make me smile no matter how many times I hear them. Others make me bristle when they challenge my stubborn character defects. "Easy does it" is one AA suggestion that I have wrestled mightily. It is a cornerstone of sobriety that helps protect against relapse, but it also happens to contradict deeply ingrained societal values such as "work hard, play hard" and "no painm no gain." Over time I have learned how important "easy does it" really is, and why my self-will has fought so hard against it.

I first came across the concept of "easy does it" in early sobriety when I clutched the Living Sober book every night, trying to figure out how I was going to manage life without drinking. I related immediately to the examples of how alcoholics tend to have trouble leaving anything unfinished, whether a glass of beer, a glass of soda or a chapter in a book. It said that we tend to rush from one thing to the next, often glossing over something important in the process. That described my tendencies with absolute precision. It was yet more evidence that AA was the right place for me.

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