Alcohol & Health
Helping Alcoholics
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Updated on February 2, 2023
5 min read

AA Recovery Quotes

Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) offers fellowship and support to people with alcohol use disorder. The group is international, apolitical, and non-professional. 

AA meetings are available almost anywhere every day of the year, including online. There are no requirements for AA other than having a desire to no longer consume alcohol.

Members also have access to literature and resources that encourage strength and clarity in the pursuit of recovery and sobriety. 

One simple and effective resource available to members is quotes that acknowledge the challenge of battling alcoholism.

Many of the quotes used by people in AA are not attributed to anyone in particular. Alcoholics Anonymous, as the name suggests, is an anonymous group. Participants use only their first names in meetings. 

Participants also do not acknowledge attendance when away from meetings. This means that many of the most profound statements made by participants are anonymous. But this doesn’t make them any less powerful.

Some of the most notable AA recovery quotes include:

“I have found that the process of discovering who I really am begins with knowing who I really don’t want to be.”

If there’s one thing people with alcohol use disorder discover when they are drinking, it’s who they don’t want to be in life. Unfortunately, evolving into someone different is difficult.

People with alcohol use disorder struggle with both physical and psychological addiction. Even if they want to stop drinking, doing so feels impossible. 

Alcoholics experience severe, potentially life-threatening withdrawal symptoms, including significant cravings. It creates a cycle of wanting to recover but struggling to do so and acting in ways they’d rather not.

They’re familiar with their faults and are acutely aware of what they don’t like about themselves. This doesn’t make it easy to change, but it does give them a blueprint for what they want to change.

“It’s simple, not necessarily easy but the rewards are endless.”

Similar to the previous quote, this quote acknowledges how challenging it is to overcome alcoholism. But it also provides hope to those struggling with recovery because it reminds them that it’s worth the effort.

“May I always remember that the power within me is far greater than any fear before me. May I always have patience, for I am on the right road.”

Committing to recovery is scary. This is especially true for people who have relied on alcohol for a long time. 

Giving yourself grace helps you to understand that the strength within you can help you overcome anything.

“The greatest enemies of us alcoholics are resentment, jealousy, envy, frustration, and fear.”

This quote acknowledges that the substance of alcohol is only part of the problem for someone with AUD.

Anyone trying to recover from alcoholism who feels as if they are battling themselves already understands this. It’s the negative emotions inside of them driving their desire to drink. 

A physical alcohol dependence is part of AUD. However, fear, envy, resentment, and other negative emotions also play a significant role.

Learning to manage these negative emotions is one of the most powerful things you can do to overcome AUD.

“God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference. Thy will, not mine, be done.”

The Serenity Prayer is an important tool people with AUD use to help them with sobriety. It offers peace and guidance in any difficult, uncontrollable situation. It is something alcoholics are encouraged to remind themselves of when times are tough.

“One day at a time.”

This quote seems simple and it is, but it’s also powerful. Battling alcohol use disorder is a daily endeavor. Focusing on getting through the day is your most important task when in recovery.

Alcoholics Anonymous encourages participants to focus on the current moment instead of obsessing about the past or worrying about the future. 

Dealing with each moment, alcohol-free, helps you build a strong foundation for a future over which you have very little control.

It’s important to remember, you don’t need to commit to a life free of drinking alcohol. All you need is to get through the day without a drink.

Alcoholics Anonymous Acronyms

Acronyms make challenging concepts easier to remember. It’s important to keep the things you’re learning in recovery simple. And you should be able to bring them to mind quickly when you need a reminder about your desire to stay alcohol-free. 

Acronyms also make it easier to communicate with other AA participants without revealing your struggle to everyone around you.

Some of the most common acronyms used within the AA community include:

  • HALT (Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired): This acronym describes some of the most common relapse triggers. It reminds people in recovery to take care of their basic needs before they’re tempted to turn to alcohol.
  • SLIP (Sobriety Losing Its Priority): You’ve probably heard of the term “slip-up” to describe a mistake. This is AA’s version of a slip-up.
  • KISS (Keep It Simple, Stupid): This is an acronym that applies to many aspects of life. Alcoholics should remember not to complicate things or allow stress to overwhelm them. According to AA, there’s no reason to make recovery complicated. Just focus on getting through each day, each hour, or each minute without a drink.
  • FEAR (False Expectations Appearing Real): Fear and anxiety are often unfounded. This doesn’t mean the feeling isn’t real, though. Understanding real threats versus what you’ve created in your imagination help you better manage sobriety and life in general.
  • GOD (Good, Orderly Direction): Whether you believe in a religious God or another version of a higher power, AA encourages you to acknowledge that guidance from a higher power is essential.
  • EGO (Easing God Out): When you move away from your higher power, things get tougher. It’s the most important support system available to you in recovery. This acronym reminds you that if you’re allowing EGO to creep in, very little room is left for God.
  • HIT (Hang In There): Recovery is a bumpy road with relapse all but guaranteed. It helps to be reminded that better times are ahead of you.
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Updated on February 2, 2023
6 sources cited
Updated on February 2, 2023
All Alcoholrehabhelp content is medically reviewed or fact checked to ensure as much factual accuracy as possible.

We have strict sourcing guidelines and only link to reputable media sites, academic research institutions and, whenever possible, medically peer reviewed studies.
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  2. DiClemente, Ph.D., Carlo C., et al. “Motivation for Change and Alcoholism Treatment.”.
  3. Tracy, Kathlene, and Samantha Wallace. “Benefits of Peer Support Groups in the Treatment of Addiction.” Substance Abuse and Rehabilitation, vol. Volume 7, no. 7, Sept. 2016, pp. 143–154, 10.2147/sar.s81535.
  4. Acharya, Tanvi, and Mark Agius. “The Importance of Hope against Other Factors in the Recovery of Mental Illness.” Psychiatria Danubina, vol. 29, no. Suppl 3, 1 Sept. 2017, pp. 619–622.
  5. Hayes, Laura, et al. “Hope, Recovery and Symptoms: The Importance of Hope for People Living with Severe Mental Illness.” Australasian Psychiatry, vol. 25, no. 6, 4 Sept. 2017, pp. 583–587.
  6. Supporting Recovery | NAMI: National Alliance on Mental Illness.”, 2021.

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