it’s time now.

if what you’ve been trying isn’t working, you might find that you do better with more support, more tools. being sober is not about willpower. it’s not about declaring that this is (really and totally) your last day 1 ever. being sober is about doing something different(ly). It’s not try harder, it’s try different. that list of things that you’ve not wanted to do – that list of things that could support your sobriety – that list of things you’ve said “i’m not doing this and this and this but i still want to be sober but i won’t do this and this and this …”
it’s time now. it’s time do some of those things on the list.
you want to be sober.
don’t get so hung up on the HOW.
This is painting Exit 342. Stay here, stay sober, stay focussed. Stay …
see more sober / recovery art here (thanks to mr.belle):


I want to put this online, to hold myself accountable. I want to document the noise in my head. I'm tired of thinking about drinking. date of last drink: june 30, 2012

  • Thank you all for your words of encouragement. They have given me the strength to go back to rehab for a 2 week “refresher” . I will be in touch when I get back with 14 days of sobriety!!

    • Awesome effort Martha C !! I too started drinking over 10 years ago when my unfaithful husband left me and our 8 year old and I was also five months pregnant with our second. The drinking started soon after the baby was born. I got rid of the ahole and moved on but the drinking never left. It’s so great that you are still hanging in there. I keep having Day 1’s but I’m not giving up either!! Go Martha C xxx

    • Hi Trudy! I get what you are saying about motivation and goals. It’s hard to commit to the sober thing because we get hung up on the “forever” part of it. That drinking is bad for us now, bad for us next Thursday and the Thursday after that and so on. By hiring a personal trainer for your backpacking goal you see an end/finale to the endurance program so to speak. You can backpack to the top of the mountain and once you do that you can keep up the personal training or not because you’ve succeeded in the goal. You made it to the top, there is nothing else to learn.

      With drinking, we don’t see a finite end. In fact it’s unending, in that once we give up the sober coach, the sober support we will likely go back to boozing. Sober support isn’t training it’s a lifestyle. If you look at it that you’re just giving up alcohol until next summer? Then you can do your back packing thing and sober thing. Guess what? Your health will SOOOO be improved just from no booze you probably won’t even need a backpacking trainer! 🙂 You might want to keep going but, you might not. Hit your sober goal then see how you feel. You may find that you feel so great you want to set a secondary goal….just my thoughts along the way in my journey. I am a goal oriented person. If I don’t see the end/reward I have trouble do it. If I can see it then nothing will stop me. You can do this.

  • Yes, Belle, thanks for this. I am battling at the moment so many new day ones lately – I’m bored at it!! Big row with Mr D on Saturday and so forgot sobriety and when this happens it goes on for days before I can even think straight. I want to stop but it just feels like too much effort right now. Stupid thing is I feel so strung up and I know when I am sober I don’t have nearly so much anxiety.

  • This resonates with me. I need to try different and better. I want to quit drinking and I don’t want to quit. It’s like with quitting smoking…I’d still like to smoke, but I know if I pick up just one and light it I’d be right back at it. It’s that type of personality…OCD. Can’t seem to do anything in moderation. I’ve conquered weight issues, smoking issues, picking out bad husbands…drinking is the last vice. I decided to sign up with a personal trainer to give me the motivation to not drink! But I haven’t started that program yet so I’m looking for even more motivation. I am happy/sad that someone else is searching for another day one. Let’s help each other.

    • you might want to have a sober coach to help you be sober 🙂 that might work in place of a personal trainer (for now). we often try to do too many things at once. goal #1 is be solidly sober. the rest comes later. if what you’ve been trying isn’t working, you can try different. it’s time now.

      • Hi Belle. My logic in hiring a personal trainer is to give myself a goal…more motivation…to quit drinking again. I want to backpack next summer…overnight stuff in the mountains carrying a heavy backpack. Right now I can only do day packing and I’m sure it’s because of drinking, not feeling bright, not sleeping well, fatigue. Is my reasoning faulty? You have much more experience than I!

      • 🙂 and it may well work for you. having motivation is great. i just know that us boozers we like to ‘fix’ a whole bunch of things at once instead of doing the work to be sober first, and then doing other stuff. you can certainly give it a try, it might be just what you need. and if it isn’t, then instead of a personal trainer right now, you could have a personal sober coach or sponsor or someone to walk with you on the way to being solidly sober. then you’ll add in training for backpacking 🙂 does that make sense? hugs

  • Thanks Belle. Every day has epiphanies. Yesterday I finally realized that it WAS all about me and what I wanted and what I needed. Martha C… you deserve to feel better, about yourself, your life. Day 35. I just got through my birthday and thanksgiving weekend and I feel grand! Thanks Belle! xo

  • I love the try different way of thinking. I had not ever thought of it in my struggles to stop the madness. It was just always—this time will be different. Then I’d do the same dance and boom I’d be back to it. Then it would be beat myself up for messing up. Disappointment, self abuse and paranoia that everybody know!

    This is the longest ever for me– that I haven’t been pregnant or nursing—day 56! It’s a different attitude. The philosophy here with Belle and the community is a position of empowerment in your life. Not hiding. Holding my head up. Feel proud of the way I feel and taking care of myself. That’s a huge difference.

    Martha C you can do this. It’s time to clear out the cobwebs wolfie puts in our brain! Remember–booze only magnifies the stress. Distorts it makes it worse and it sounds like with the stress of your husband you don’t need any added bs. Hang in there, you are the only You that YOU have.

    • TJS, SweetJam, Belle, etc, thank you for your support. I will get through this and lead a sober life again. It’s going to be a f’ing nghtmare but I’ve done it before, I can do it again.
      Martha C

  • Thanks Belle, you’re so right, it’s not about trying harder, it’s about trying different. And different for me this time includes subscribing to your podcasts, emailing you much more often and staying close here. I’m so used to trying “harder” but its like beating my head against the same brick wall. Now I’m adding a hammer and chisel to my toolbox and chipping away at that wall. Different. Better. 🙂

  • It’s been 6 months since I started drinking again after almost 3 years of sobriety. I picked up a drink because my husband was unfaithful. But enough already. I have to stop. I am going to AA meetings but then buying a bottle on the way home. I Go to group relapse prevention meetings weekly. I see a therapist every two weeks. But the drinking doesn’t stop. It’s like I’m waiting for something to happen, something to click in, something to bop me over the head, some lightning bolt to hit. Wha do I do?

    • you might want to go back to what you were doing before – all those sober treats and emailing me and listening to audios. and add in other supports like AA and having a sober coach. and maybe you can do a trial of medication, too. you want to be sober. it doesn’t matter how. you keep all that you’re doing and add in 5-10% more. add layers of blankets to the bed. add more supports to your sober toolkit. if what you’re doing now isn’t quite enough, then keep all of it and add a bit more. you can email me when you’re on day 1 and we can begin. your spot is here. you can reach out more. you’re member 449. that doesn’t change. hugs, belle xo

      • Thanks, Belle, I can’t believe how quickly you responded to me! This disease is so awful and I know it will kill me if I can’t beat it. Fortunately I can still remember how great sobriety was. I do want it again. Thank you for your help. I’ll be in touch when it’s time for day 1

    • Keep coming back! I have heard this to be the #1 reason for becoming sober (first time or again), please do not stop trying. We in the rooms want you to keep coming back, NO MATTER WHAT and my prayer today is soon … you’ll go home from the meeting without stopping for a bottle. Claim your seat and keep it. Sending you much love.

      • Thank you Beachluvn Annie, your response means the world to me. I will keep going to meetings and today I see my therapist to discuss possible residential treatment. PS I love the beach, too! Martha C