Inspirational Quotes

One of the things that 12 step groups are famous for are the quotes that hang on walls of meetings. They are there for a reason. When some one tries to get off alcohol and drugs, their brains are so wired and so rambled that they just don’t take anything in. It is often said at meetings that when someone can read the first chapter of a book and remember it, it is a huge leap forward in their recovery from addiction.  Quotes and slogans are short, rhythmic and usually memorable. It is why writers and poets throughout history have made frequent use them. They stick in the mind. From Aristotle to Mark Twain, and quotes from many 12 step group member, please enjoy and we hope you find your own one to use.



When you're home by yourself you're behind enemy lines

If you share your pain you cut it in half, if you don't you double it

If you don't want what we have, go back out to what you had

There's no elevator, you have to take the steps

AA is not for people who need it, it's for people who want it

Part of compliance is defiance, but you must arrive at acceptance of the disease

I'm an egomaniac with an inferiority complex

My head is like a bad neighbourhood and I shouldn't go in there alone

Religion is for people who are afraid they'll go to hell. Spirituality is for people who have been there

I'm not going to give anybody free rent in my head

I was hopelessly I'm dopelessly hopeful

I used to be a hopeless dope fiend, now I'm a dopeless hope fiend

I need to put things in perspective because I have a disease of perception

The quality of your recovery is proportional to the quality of your surrender

I'm a W.C.S. person. That's Worst Case scenario"

I'm basically a negative person, that's why I'm so happy

Untreated alcoholism without the steps on a daily basis will make my past my future


Those who relapse are attending powerlessness graduate school

This program changes the way I relate to me.  That's what I'm trying to do, change the way I relate to me

If you commit suicide you're killing the wrong person

If you're not moving away from a drink you're moving closer to it

I've been beating up on myself so much I feel like hitting myself

A critic is a person who goes onto the battlefield after the battle has been fought and shoots the survivors

AA is not a program to get's a program to live your life successfully and to be happy once you get sober

I'd never trade my worst day sober for my best day drunk

Being an alcoholic does not give me the excuse to act alcoholically

I worked my using hard, so now I want to work my sobriety hard

The shortest sentence in the Big Book is, "It Works

"The power behind me is greater than the problem in front of me

When you're in fear you're not in faith

A fear faced is a fear erased

Every time I draw a sober breath I'm like a fish out of water

I was a scream in search of a mouth

I didn't make it all the way to the beach to drown in the sand

Drinking gave me the illusion that I might be alive

I am one drink away from never being sober again for the rest of my life

Praying is asking God for help, meditating is listening for God's answer

The reason I'm here is because I'm not all there

My biggest problem was bottles of the two-legged variety

My basic problem is that I flee from those who want me and I pursue the rejectors

When I live in the past, I live in regret. When I live in the future, I live in fear. When I stay in the NOW, everything's always okay

If I could drink socially I'd get drunk every night

There's no speeding in the trudging zone

Having a resentment is like drinking poison and expecting someone else to die

Courage is fear in action

Had the eyes no tears, the soul would have no rainbow

God will heal your broken heart, if you will give Him all the pieces

My life hereafter is from this moment on

We are attracted to people who share in our growth and  progress and lose interest in those who don't

Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgment that something else is more important than fear

Self-will imprisoned me far more than bars ever did

I've definitely got the "ism" in alcoholism...that's incredibly short memory

I had to learn how to float in this program because I'm a sinker

On relapse: "I never did anything in moderation... except maybe the steps

Bring the body and the mind follows It's not the load that breaks you's the way you carry it

When you choose the lesser of two evils, always remember that it is still an evil

If everything is coming your way, you're in the wrong lane

Go often to the house of thy friend, for weeds choke the unused path

Life is not so much a matter of position as of disposition

Seven days without a meeting makes one weak

If you hang out at the barbershop long enough you're bound to get a haircut

On relapse: "I never did anything in moderation...especially the steps

Bring the body and the mind follows

Tomorrow's a fantasy and yesterday's gone...there's only today

Thank you, God, for the beautiful day I'm going to have if I can just get rid of my fucking attitude

We're sick people trying to get better, not bad people trying to be good

When you've got one foot in yesterday and the other in tomorrow, you can only piss on today

The only way to have gratitude is to live in the now, not in the past or the future

I didn't get my life back in this program...I got my life for the first time

I never had a problem that was worse than the old solution I found for it

What other people think of you is none of your business

If it wasn't for denial my life would be shit

Change only happens when the pain of holding on is greater than the fear of letting go

An expectation is a premeditated resentment

I used to shoot up and throw up, now I suit up and show up

If you can't love everybody today, at least try not to hurt anybody

The reasonable person adapts to society. An unreasonable person adapts society

If it doesn't matter, it doesn't matter

Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great

My sobriety depends on who God is, not who I am

You cannot save your ass and your face at the same time

Cash register honesty is easier than being honest with yourself, because at least you know the rules

Acceptance without gratitude is bullshit

You're not responsible for your disease, but you are responsible for your behaviour

If you don't want what we have, we will cheerfully refund your misery

Have a nice day unless you've made other plans

If you refuse to accept anything but the best you very often get it

Now that I'm sober I hit my knees in a different way than I used to

Work to become, not to acquire

Regarding believing in God: "Pretend. Act as if.  Fake it until you make it

Don't be afraid to take a big step. You can't cross a chasm in two small jumps

On the hopelessness of addiction from somebody who is still using: "I used to think there was light at the end of the tunnel, but for me today the light is on a locomotive headed right for me

The value of the average conversation could be enormously improved by the constant use of four simple words: "I do not know

One Day at a time

It works if you work it

Keep it simple stupid (KISS)

Let go, let God

First things first

Easy does it!

Honesty, Openness, Willingness (HOW)

My worst day sober is better than my best day high.

Sick and tired of being sick and tired.

"Living our pre-AA active daily lifestyle was akin to switching seats on the Titanic

You can't direct the wind, but you can adjust your sails

Yes, you can be a dreamer and a doer too, if you will remove one word from your vocabulary: impossible

If triangles had a God, he would have 3 sides

Everyone is kneaded out of the same dough but not baked in the same oven

Never cut a tree down in the wintertime. Never make a negative decision in the low time

Real generosity toward the future lies in giving all to the present

Behaviourism is the art of pulling habits out of rats

The greatest good you can do for another is not just share your riches, but reveal to them their own

The worst of all deceptions is self-deception

Whenever you fall, pick something up

If you continually give you will continually have

He then learns that in going down into the secrets of his own mind he has descended into the secrets of all minds

It is easier to get forgiveness than permission

Fear knocked on my door...I opened it and there was nobody there

Be careful what you pray for, you just might get it

The most important word in the Steps is the first one... "WE"

The world ain't gonna kiss my butt just because I'm getting sober

My mind is out to get me

A recovering alcoholic without a sponsor is much like leaving Dracula in charge of the blood bank

Relapse starts long before the drink is drunk

First the man takes a drink, then the drink takes a drink, then the drink takes the man

The secret to long term sobriety: Don't drink, don't die.

If from the skies fall lemons, make lemonade

Don't let the limits of your imagination block you from what God can do for you

Angels fly because they take themselves so lightly

I have a very high pain threshold and a very low fear threshold

I always look for the hardest way to do the easiest thing

If you don't grow, you go

If you don't hear what you need to hear, say what you need to hear

we shall not cease from exploration And the end of all our exploring Will be to arrive where we started And know the place for the first time

Look at everything as though you were seeing it either for the first or last time. Then your time on earth will be filled with glory

Nothing contributes more to peace of soul than having no opinion at all

We could never learn to be brave and patient, if there were only joy in the world

Fear is a darkroom for developing negatives

I would rather be able to appreciate things I cannot have than to have things I am not able to appreciate

A smooth sea never made a skilful sailor

When you starve with a tiger, the tiger starves last (Griffin's Thought)

While I'm in a meeting, my disease is out in the parking lot doing push-ups (Mike M.)

When I moved in sobriety, I went to the meetings and thought, 'Oh, you do things differently here...i.e., wrong.'" (Mike M.)

Laziness is no more than the habit of resting before you get tired (Jules Renard)

Democracy is where you can say what you think even if you don't think

It is not length of life, but depth of life (Ralph Waldo Emerson)

Two step formula for handling stress: 1. Don't sweat the small stuff. 2. Remember that it's all small stuff. (Anthony Robbins)

The world is made for people who aren't cursed with self-awareness

Listen or thy tongue will keep thee deaf (American Indian Proverb)

When the only tool you own is a hammer, every problem begins to resemble a nail (Abraham Maslow)

Deja Fu: The feeling that somehow, somewhere, you've been kicked in the head like this before.

A day without sunshine is like night

HUMILITY: "To err is human, to moo bovine

ON PROPHECY: "The meek shall inherit the earth -- they are too weak to refuse

People that don't go to meetings, don't hear about what happens to people that don't go to meetings (Phil A.)

You can't think your way into right have to live your way into right thinking (Pat H.)

If you're not enjoying this program, maybe you're not working it right (Pat H.)

If you find working the steps too hard, try living them instead...that's where the real joy in the program lies

If you wanna make God laugh, tell him YOUR plans for the day (Bob B.)

United we stand; divided we stagger

Complete is proved only by giving. All you are unable to give possesses you (Andre Gide)

If you truly want to understand something, try to change it. "

He who foresees calamities suffers them twice over

He who no's himself is wise. He who knows himself is enlightened

Success is the ability to go from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm.(Winston Churchill)

There is an easy answer to your problem that is neat, plausible, and wrong

A designer knows he has achieved perfection not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.(Antoine de Saint-Exup'ery)

Confidence is the feeling you have before you understand the situation

Nervousness is just God trying to shake the truth out of you

Belief without action is the ruin of the soul

(Edward Abbey)

He who knows that enough is enough will always have enough

I have often regretted my speech, never my silence

Our defects of character are the bars of a cage. The central point is not to study the bars, but to get out of the cage

Recovery is a journey between two stations. One station represents total chaos, and the other represents total serenity. What is important is not where you are, but what direction you are facing

Life without recovery: Even roses have thorns. Life in recovery: Even thorns have roses.

If you do not know where you are going, then any road will take

you there (David L.)

The slogans work much better for me when I decorate my life with them rather than decorating the walls with them (Jenn K.)

The most natural state of an alcoholic is irritable, restless, and discontented

We are human BEings, not human DOings

Recognizing someone else's  human dignity cannot cost you your own

I'd rather have a frontal lobotomy than a bottle in front of me

If you don't want what we have, your misery can be refunded

Funny...I ruined my health by drinking to other's!"

Don't Entertain The Thought

Progress Not Perfection

The chains of alcohol are too light to be felt until they are too strong to be broken

I didn't get into trouble every time I drank, but every time I got into trouble I was drinking.

Happiness is not a place you arrive at, it is a way you travel

The only real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes (Marcel Proust)

Is it not better to aim your spear at the moon and strike only an eagle, than to aim your spear at the eagle, and strike only a rock?"

If your ass falls off, put it in a paper bag and take it to a meeting

If my brain didn't need me for transportation, it would have killed me a long time ago!" If you're not a lion tamer, don't go into the lion's den

You can't speed up your recovery, but you sure can slow it down

If I don't let go, I lose my grip

If God is your co-pilot, SWITCH SEATS!"

It's 11:00, do you know where your brain is?"

Talk does not cook rice

If you always do what you always did, you'll always get what you always got

We'll love you until you learn to love yourself

Don't give up before the miracle happens

Unless I accept my virtues, I will be overwhelmed with my faults

Pray daily, God is easier to talk to than most people

Willpower tells me I must, but willingness tells me I can

Emotions aren't facts

Humility is not thinking less of yourself, but thinking of yourself less

If GOD drives you out, BOOZE will bring you back

You can't think your way into a new way of have to

live your way into a new way of thinking!"

No God, no peace...Know God, know peace

It's not the yets we have to worry about, it's the again's

Rejection is God's protection

INTIMACY = In-to-me-I-see

"ME + U is a power greater than ME. U + US is a power greater than U

Winners do what they have to do and losers do what they want to do

It is easier to stay sober than to get sober

My anxiety is in my indecision

Whatever you put before your sobriety; you shall surely lose

Why put off today, what you can put off tomorrow

He who fails to plan, plans to fail

Anything worth doing well, is well worth overdoing

Nothing changes if nothing changes

Attitudes are contagious. Is yours worth catching?"

The only weapon that becomes sharper with constant use is the tongue

Nothing is so strong as gentleness, and nothing is so gentle as true strength  (Ralph Sockman)

Boredom is the feeling that everything is a waste of time; serenity, that nothing is (Thomas Szasz)

To gain that worth having, it may be necessary to lose everything else (Bernadette Devlin)

The trouble with most of us is that we would rather be ruined by praise than saved by criticism

Do not condemn the judgement of another because it differs from your own. You may both be wrong

Reputation: what others are not thinking about you The only time you don't fail is the last time you try anything - and it works. (William Strong)

It's not a matter of where you stand but in what direction you're


May you live all the days of your life (Jonathan Swift)

He who foresees calamities suffers them twice over

When a stupid man is doing something he is ashamed of, he always declares that it is his duty

Don't mistake pleasure for happiness. They're a different breed of dog(Josh Billings)

Modesty is the only sure bait when you angle for praise (Lord Chesterfield)

Swing hard, in case they throw the ball where you're swinging (Duke Snider)

If you judge, investigate (Seneca)

You cannot depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus (Mark Twain)

"Friendship is like money, easier made than kept (Samuel Butler)

The only Zen you find on the tops of mountains is the Zen you bring up there (Robert M. Pirsig)

I'm not much, but I'm all I think about

Don't let the urgent get in the way of the important

People who relapse usually do so because they accepted the things they could have changed

AA is not for people who need it. AA is not for people who want it. AA is for people who do it.