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Courage to Change:

Slowly, as I began to recover, I realized what a wonderful gift the Al- Anon program was. It gave me an understanding of this disease, the tools to change my life, the courage to use them, and a place to talk about my secrets and to hear others share theirs. I wanted my family and friends to have all of these things as well.

Then I read the Twelfth Step, about carrying the message to others, and began my missionary work. I dragged people to meetings. I preached what I’d learned to anyone who would listen — and even those who wouldn’t. Of course, I made a fool of myself and none of this worked.

Then I read the Twelfth Step again. This time I noticed the part about practicing these principles in all my affairs. Slowly I came to understand that in living these principles I would carry the message by example.

Today’s Reminder:

It’s only natural to want to share what works for me with those I love. But when I must share it now, I may be more interested in changing others than in sharing my experience, strength, and hope. If I am insistent on carrying the message, I can work on improving the message my own example conveys.

“We ought not to insist on everyone following in our footsteps, nor to take upon ourselves to give instructions in spirituality when, perhaps, we do not even know what it is.” – Teresa of Avila

From the book “Courage to Change”. Copyright Al-Anon Family Group Headquarters, Inc. 1992