Tips for the Newcomer

Upon arriving in the rooms of AA and NA, I thought I knew everything.  I wasn’t an alcoholic (although I was pretty sure I was an addict), and those Step Things on the wall didn’t really apply to me.  Fortunately, as the toxins cleared from my system, I began to realize the depth of my problem.


I was overwhelmed by the whole idea of my disease and I was scared to death.  I had no idea what to do next.  The men in my house group picked me up by the ears and set me on a helpful path.  They slowly poured recovery wisdom into those ears, filling me up with bits and tips of information that I could swallow, bite by bite.


With the help of a few friends I have collected as many of those tips as we can remember.  They helped us when we started out, and we hope they will help you.

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Everything you think you know is wrong!

I was sure I knew the answer to everything.  But they reminded me that it was my best thinking that got me here in the first place.  My old way of thinking was killing me and I knew it.

Am I an Alcoholic?

Am I an Addict?

It's a question only you can answer.  Until we admit we have a problem, we can do nothing to fix it.  These questions may help you decide.

Stinking Thinking

Stinking Thinking.  They patiently explained to me that I was insane. My disease had twisted my view of reality and warped my thinking. The drugs and booze had poisoned my brain. 

HOW  do I get started?

Honesty, Openness, and Willingness—the “HOW” of recovery.  Honesty must form the basis of everything that follows. ​ I must be open to new ideas.  I must rein in my ego enough to accept other ways of thinking. 

Find a sponsor,

Work the Steps

I had to find a Sponsor, someone to help me work the Steps. The Steps were scary, but they said it would make the pain go away and I could feel good about myself again.

Denial--It ain't a river in Egypt

If I deny my disease, I cannot begin to treat it.  That's why Honesty is the spiritual principle behind the First Step.

Text and original photos copyright 2017-2020 by Linville M. Meadows