You have to just throw in the towel. You have to believe wholeheartedly that when it comes to drugs and alcohol, you have absolutely no power. You must be willing to be wrong, cede entire control and then look at the recovered person holding the Big Book and genuinely say,
“Okay, tell me what you did, I’ll do anything. Anything.”
Do you see? You have to let go completely and give up not just drugs and alcohol, but perhaps your entire previous life, including any previous beliefs, attitudes and desires that no longer serve you. That is the only way. You have to be willing to give up everything and literally hurl yourself into this process. If you really let go and give everything you have to this mind-altering program of spiritual action, that is how you get better.
A kid I spoke to one time ended up going to treatment and after taking Steps and having a profound spiritual experience, the entire course of his life changed. His affluent parents called me almost disappointed and said,
“What about his job? He has this great job in the city! Now he wants to stay at the treatment center to help people and then pursue some graduate degree in theology!!! Oh no! What did you do to him?!?!”
Hahaha, um, would you rather have him in the city making money only to relapse again and again and again until he finally overdoses or sinks into some depression and then jumps off a bridge? If he’s not okay, he loses everything anyway.
The bottom line is that this is what it takes to recover. You have to be willing to flip the table over and start over completely. You have to be willing to blow the whole thing up. You have to be willing to do go to ANY lengths, and that might mean starting a whole new life.
If we have created a life entirely based on self-will and the principles which drive the addict mind, that life becomes obsolete when the addict has an entire psychic change. Think about it. The previous life is of little use because priorities and purpose have changed completely. Instead of doing things for self-seeking, selfish, dishonest or fearful reasons, the recovered addict now desires to do things that will help him and others to grow spiritually, things that are productive and useful, things that have meaning, value and purpose.