Recovery One Day At A Time | How To Live One Day At A Time In Recovery?

Recovery One Day At A Time | How To Live One Day At A Time In Recovery?

What it Means to Live One Day at a Time in Recovery

If you have ever been to treatment or known someone who has attended drug or alcohol addiction treatment, you may have heard the saying, “ live one day at a time ”. The phrase is not just a common encouragement, it holds great meaning representing the gratitude an individual feels about their sobriety, and the importance of it presently. Exploring this common addiction recovery phrase and the importance of carrying it out can help us to live each day as they come so that we may remain sober and grateful.

To “Live One Day at a Time” through AA

The phrase, “live one day at a time” is attributed to the phrase, “live one day at a time”, which was not taken from one of the 12 steps. The original concept of AA was that each individual had 24 hours of sober living. Each individual has a daily obligation to feed their spiritual needs, including managing their own sobriety. There is no cure for addiction and it is up to the individual to remain sober. This will allow people in recovery to not have to worry about their commitment to sobriety forever. It’s easier to take a pill for today’s recovery goals than it is to take a pill forever.

Being Present throughout Recovery

To live one day at a time is to focus on the present and not worry about the past or future. Recovering individuals will feel a lot of guilt and shame about their past addictive behaviors, and this can be a triggering factor. Recovering individuals may be unsure about their future and anxious for the unknown, which can also be atrigger to use. The goal and mission of the present moment allows these individuals to work on developing useful skills now so that they are prepared for the future and able to handle the past.

Living one day at a time is a commitment.

A person committing to living today sober and doing all that staying sober entails throughout the next 24 hours is not only committing to living today sober, but they are also committing to doing all that staying sober entails throughout the next 24 hours. These commitments have been made.

  • A positive attitude is maintained.
  • Taking on a single problem at a time.
  • Expanding knowledge can be done in a number of different ways.
  • Do good for others and react amiably.
  • There is a focus on loving the self through meditative techniques.
  • A willingness to try new things outside of their comfort zone.

One day at a time, one problem at a time.

During addiction treatment and recovery, individuals are swarmed with emotions they have been running from through active addiction. It can seem challenging, overwhelming, and nearly impossible to deal with every emotion that comes to play. Taking recovery one day at a time means also dealing with these emotions one at a time, as they come. It’s much easier to deal with present problems rather than to worry about all of the problems and become stressed. When a person works on what is in front of them rather than worry about tomorrow’s issues, they are more likely to handle what is in front of them and be prepared for the next day as it comes.

Recovery to remain present with the use of Mindfulness.

It doesn’t just take repeating the phrase, ” live one day at a time” to remain present. It takes a willingness to stay focused and a commitment to change perception. This is more difficult than it should be. One technique that can help an individual in recovery to stay in the present moment is the use of meditation. This is a meditation that focuses on the emotions, issues, and goals of the present. With practice and patience, meditation can help to shape mindset and help an individual remain in the present moment so that successful long-term recovery can be achieved.

Ready to Live One Day at a Time?

Are you ready for a change of mindset so that you can live in the present moment and fight your addiction one day at a time? The Discovery Institute can provide you with the skill set, knowledge, and healing that you need to live a successful live in recovery. You don’t have to be addicted forever! You CAN get help and stay clean if you take each day at a time and practice being present in this moment. Have questions about what treatment is like at our facility, what we offer, and how to enroll? Give us a call to speak with an addiction specialist confidentially at 844-433-1101.


Reviewed for medical and clinical accuracy by Dr. Jeffrey Berman, MD.

Dr. Jeffrey Berman is a psychiatrist in Teaneck, New Jersey and is affiliated with Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital. He received his medical degree from State University of New York Upstate Medical University and has been in practice for more than 20 years. He also speaks multiple languages, including French and Hebrew.

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