Recovery Connections

John Schwary is CEO of Transitional Living Communities, a 850-bed recovery program he founded in Mesa, Arizona January 9, 1992 when he had a year sober. He's in his 27th year of recovery.

In these posts, he views life mostly through the lenses of recovery. While the blog is factual, he sometimes disguises events and people to protect anonymity.

Saturday, November 28, 2015

A Solution

"God grant us the serenity to accept the things we cannot change, courage to change the things we can, and wisdom to know the difference."  Reinhold Niebuhr

Sometimes I hear these words so often they become almost cliche. That is, they slip almost unnoticed into the background.

I hear the Serenity Prayer enough at 12-step meetings that sometimes it's a tool I forget to apply. And for me the difficult part is "wisdom to know the difference."

Because isn't that always the problem? Trying to figure out what we can change and what we can't? My idea - at least it used to be - is to change the environment. The circumstances. The people around me.

If all that would change, then everything would be great. I'd be happy. The world would run as it's supposed to. All would be peace.

Yes, for me it's definitely the wisdom part. I already have serenity. I have courage. But I definitely wrestle with the wisdom part. And over the years it's cost me a lot of time and money - especially in the business world.

I bring this topic today because many readers struggle with relatives who are using. Mothers, wives, daughters - and the rare man - wonder how to deal with their addict.

And my ego tempts me to give them a quick answer that will get that person clean and sober. But all I can tell them is what I've learned in the program.  That's all I have.

And the essence of it is in the serenity prayer.

Click here to learn the secret history of the serenity prayer.

Click here to email John