AA Sayings

aamedalAlcoholics Anonymous has been around for more than 75 years (it was started shortly after Prohibition was repealed). In that time a great deal of wisdom has accumulated. Much of it is captured in the sayings, or slogans of AA.

There are five sayings that are considered “original”.

Easy Does It.
First Things First.
Think, Think, Think.
But for the grace of God.
Live and let live.

Since then, the sayings have exploded, with at least one website listing more than 400. They start with the original five, followed by, One day at a time and Let go and let God.

These are powerful little nuggets that simplify principles into a form that is both immediate and capable of being grasped by the alcoholic mind. They do lose some of their strength when tossed off in a knee-jerk fashion. On the other hand, many quality meetings have been driven by starting with an AA saying and letting each member explain what the phrase means to them.

You can also find favorite sayings in sig files attached to posts on AA forums. Some are familiar, others seem fresh and inspired. It’s anonym-us, not anonym-me.

Even individual groups sometimes adopt a tagline or unofficial saying they use that gives them encouragement. I remember one with a wooden plaque, “Jenni lived through it.” If you asked, any regular there could tell you the story about a woman in the group who had pretty much done it all – every imaginable tragedy, from jail to a partial liver transplant. They sometimes pointed to the plaque whenever someone was drifting off into self-pity about how hard their life had become.

So treasure your favorite saying. Use its power to help you along the path. Share it with others and share the meaning you have found in it.

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