When we are newly sober and just beginning the journey of recovery, we are in need of a guide and mentor to help us navigate the unfamiliar waters of twelve step recovery. It is our responsibility to ask a member of our twelve step fellowship to sponsor us. Choosing a sponsor who is well suited to help us work the steps can be a real difference maker.

Qualities of a good sponsor

A sponsor’s primary purpose is to help the sponsee successfully work through the twelve steps. A sponsor should have successfully worked the twelve steps and be continuously applying the twelve steps in his or her life. In addition, your ideal sponsor should be of the same sex or gender as you.

In addition to working the twelve steps, your sponsor will act as a crucial recovery resource. Each 12 Step program—be it AA, NA, CA, or any other variation—consists of a fellowship, or group of likeminded individuals, who work together to support a common purpose: to help the still-suffering person begin to recover. Your sponsor can answer questions about this fellowship and guide you in 12 Step meeting etiquette, or the things you should and should not do at meetings.

At the meetings you attend, listen to other attendees sharing their experience, strength, and hope. When you hear someone share something that makes sense to you, talk to the person after the meeting. Simply ask him or her to be your sponsor. If the person is an active member of your twelve step fellowship, the answer is almost certainly going to be an enthusiastic yes. The reason for this is simple: The 12th Step directly asks everyone who has recovered to “carry this message to other(s),” to, in essence, become a sponsor. In order to remain recovered, fellowship members must sponsor newcomers. If they do not, they are unlikely to remain clean and sober.

What your sponsor is not

In early recovery, many of us had legal problems and owed a lot of money. Our sponsors helped us solve these problems ourselves by helping us work the twelve steps, but they never did this work for us. We should never rely on our sponsor to solve such problems, but instead allow them to help us to do this work ourselves.

The road to recovery

Although recovery from alcoholism and drug addiction is not easy, it is not only possible but highly likely—if we keep an open mind and turn the suggestions of our sponsors into actions. As the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous tells us: “If we are painstaking about this phase of our development, we will be amazed before we are halfway through.” If you haven’t started walking this path, the time to do so is now. Call Contact Alta Loma Recovery at 866-457-3843 to begin your journey today!

Recovery means being willing to do things differently, including changing the way we eat. A healthy start to your recovery can begin right now. Contact Alta Loma Recovery at 866-457-3843 today and start living a healthy, happy, and sober life!