I know about "The Secret" via Oprah. I didn't read "The Secret", I read "The Celestine" prophecy which is secretively "The Secret". Both of these books talk about the unseen laws of the universe like karma, manifestation and the law of economics (we get back what we put in). Somehow the atom is an accepted theory, but the law of economics is a very hard concept for people to understand. We let things like perceived unfairness cloud our perception i.e. when bad things happen to good people we start to think there is no God, no fairness, no order. We expect our rewards to be relative to our offerings i.e. If I give to the poor, people will help me when I am struggling. The problem here is that we are assuming that we know what is best for us at all times without consideration of things that are outside of our contextual environment such as: how it will effect others around us, how it will shape our future, etc.
A good example is a meeting I was in recently. This older guy starts talking about how his house was broken into a year and a half ago. He called 911 and the woman asked if he had a gun. He did. She then proceeded to tell him that because the intruder was in his home, it would be fully legal for him to shoot them. This man was fairly new in recovery and really didn't want to do that. Instead he waited for the cops to arrive and apprehend the man.
So the guy telling the story goes on to talk about how at that time he was volunteering to hold meetings at the prison. Maybe you can see where this is going. He ends up running into the (then) meth addict that broke into his home. For the next year and a half he goes through the steps with this guy. This is where I come in. At the meeting I'm at he explains to us that he just gave the man his 18 month chip THAT day and the man's 2 children came up to him and thanked him for saving their dad, not only by not shooting him, but by giving him a second chance at life by being sober and a part of their lives again. It was really beautiful.
This is a perfect example of God/The Creator and/or Universal Law. A man does the"right thing" (gets sober in his life). He then gets "punished" or a perceived punishment (If I'm sober and doing the right thing then why are bad things happening to me?). He then goes on to save the man's life. If you don't follow that whole path to the end, the man is sober and volunteering and yet he's still getting fucked over. With our limited knowledge of the future, our lack of vision gets in the way and instead of being merciful (in this man's case) we pull the trigger.
There are laws that exist in the universe and whether you see it immediately or it happens down the road, you will get back what you put in. Hopefully, this story helped to illustrate that. I have many, many more supplemental stories just like this as evidence, but the literature is out there too. The thing I like about this story is that it that it also talks about the path of the man on meth and that sometimes it's necessary to go down before we go up.
Now that I'm out of the fizz fog of drinking an 18 pack a night I get to sit back and watch the newbies struggle their way through the first few months. To a degree people in recovery are very much the same. Most of us think we can trick ourselves into drinking only on weekends or only on Holidays. Most of us think we can set traps like having someone hold our cash on payday or having our roommate stash our booze where we can't find it. Just like our drinking life, our sober life is filled with methodologies and superstitions we've conjured to try and control an outcome. And most of us don't understand the idea of surrender or letting go because you can't control surrendering and control is all we really know.
Some of the interesting concepts I've seen newbies come in with are straight entertainment. The Sober Calculator was the first one that comes to mind. This "anonymous" kid thought that by downloading this app that counted his sober days down to the second would be enough to keep him in check. The one thing the calculator is missing is a tally of how many times a person uninstalls it and installs it to start all over again. Can you imagine if these app makers figured out the key to what some of the world's greatest physicians couldn't solve? First app to receive the Nobel Prize?
Another one I see often is the gung-ho quit everything at once guy. Not a good idea! I hate to promote smoking (it won't be the first time) but smoking can actually help you curb the monster cravings hitting you from every angle. This is where that saying "Take It Easy" comes in. Dieting, getting a good job, buying a house, quitting smoking...those things can all come later. Please don't try to run for senate the week you quit drinking.
This one I love: A girl I met at a meeting said that instead of going to AA she was just going to watch "Mom" reruns. I never saw her again. Sure, maybe she's walking around sober and getting a shot of "Mom" every night before she goes to bed, but sadly that theory seems like a bust. Straight up the reasons we go to meetings are like a) the get support b) to connect and c) to identify ourselves as alcoholics so that one day our unconscious mind might actually believe we have a problem cause we certainly don't feel like we do.
I like the addict mind, it's cunning, manipulative and irrational and those things make for REALLY great comedy. What are your insane tricks to getting sober? Best one gets a lollipop.