This alcoholic certainly is!
From p87/88 of the BB:
As we go through the day we pause, when agitated or doubtful, and ask for the right thought or action. We constantly remind ourselves we are no longer
running the show, humbly saying to ourselves many times each day “Thy will be done.’’ We are then in much less danger of excitement, fear, anger, worry,
self-pity, or foolish decisions. We become much more efﬁcient. We do not tire so easily, for we are not burning up energy foolishly as we did when we were
trying to arrange life to suit ourselves. It works—it really does.
We alcoholics are undisciplined. So we let God discipline us in the simple way we have just outlined.
At a meeting in early sobriety, maybe my third-or-forth, I heard a member of my home group share about 'doing the next right thing
that was placed in front of us', and I also liked Chris R (of speakertape fame) saying, "Do you know what God wants you to do? I'll tell you what God wants you to do, he wants you to treat your family with some respect, go to work, and get on with Step 4!"
I liked and use both suggestions.
Now, later in sobriety, I'm still an undisciplined 'sack-of-nails', - or at least I can be at times - I seem to focus on one area in my life, and discipline myself there, but other stuff falls by the wayside. For example, I'm currently extremely disciplined with work. I set myself targets, and I bring my whole focus upon them to ensure I reach them, but then I'm so tired, my meditation takes a miss, or I fail to pay my family the attention they deserve.
And I sort of get the feeling that this is a case of 'progress (which I have without a doubt made) not perfection (which I am far from)'.
So, can I ask you fellow members your experience of applying the above to your own life?
Progress... not perfection (darnit!). The quote on page 87 doesn't say, "we do the next right thing", it says "...and ask (God) for the right thought or action..." Not sure how that got changed to the "next right thing"... but believe it came out of treatment centers, as I never heard it when I first came in.
In early sobriety, I was frustrated not to be "cured" & possess 20 yrs of sobriety in 2 months, 2 years, etc. My sponsor reminded me that I had to "practice, practice, practice" Steps 10 & 11 each day -- preferably as they were outlined in our Big Book
She taught me how to incorporate my 6th & 7th Steps as part of my 11th Step evening review in early sobriety, as I was still "learning" to be aware of when my character defects (destructive reactionary emotions) flared up! Just being aware of them was progress for me in the beginning, and if I missed one of them... well... she had no problem in pointing them out for me!
I had learned the "God pauses" from day 1, so imagine my surprise when I got to page 87 and saw where my sponsor learned about them, as I thought she & the other old-timers were brilliant with these ideas
I was told that I'd written with my right hand my entire life, and now that I'm in AA... I had to be willing to use my LEFT hand. That meant practice, practice, practice! In early sobriety, when fear or one of those other nasty defects popped up, my instinct was to try to use my right hand, as that was more familiar - though a destructive bad habit learned over my years of drinking. But in time... and with daily practice to the best of my ability... it got much easier to use my left. Then, with more time & practice, those old destructive bad habits were replaced with the spiritually based ones described in Steps 10 & 11 - wow! The promises of those Steps came true for me... especially the one stated on page 87: "We come to rely upon it."
The direction of the Steps helped me find a God of my understanding, One which I totally trust & rely upon today. Prayer, meditation, & even those "God pauses" have all become 2nd nature... like breathing in and out. The old bad habits were eventually replaced with the ones that really worked
I try to keep things very simple, don't over-analyze & take myself too seriously, and still have a sponsor after all these years! For me, living & incorporating the Steps in my daily life has become the easier, softer way. They will for you too... just follow the directions... one day at a time. I believe there is no "neutral" in AA... we're either growing spiritually or slipping backwards. From what you've shared, sounds like you're growing - isn't it a wonderful way of life