Chris Newcomb, M.Div.
H.O.W. is an acronym that is often taught to newcomers in the 12 step community so they can learn to stay sober. It stands for Honest, Open, and Willing. That is, if you want to stay sober, you must do the following.
You must be honest. If you lie, you undermine your chances at recovery. The truth is hard to tell. As the saying goes, "you're only as sick as your secrets." Telling the truth will set you free.
You must be open (see pic above). That is, you must open your mind to consider a different way of life, different ideas, and different ways of doing things that may fly in the face of your preconceived notions of right and wrong, good and bad, cool and uncool, etc.
You must be willing. Willingness is very important. If you are not willing, you might as well hang it up. It won't happen. You must be willing to take suggestions AND try to do what is suggested. It's the only way.
I believe that you must be open more than anything. If you are not open to honesty, how can you be honest? If you are not open to willingness, how can you be willing? In fact, people get stuck in drug and alcohol abuse exactly because they are not open. They are closed off: closed off to love, closed off to self-discipline, closed off to self-care, closed off to so many life giving things that they spiral down into their addiction.
Today is a new day. We can change anytime we want to change. I encourage you to chose openness. Open your mind. Be open to honesty. Be open to willingness. Be open to change. Be open to a new life. Be open to letting go of your old life. Be open to a new existence. Then, pass it on!
At The Coleman Institute, we specialize in helping people get clean clean and stay clean from alcohol and drugs. We are in the business of helping our clients open their minds so they can change their lives for the better by living free from substance abuse. If you or someone you love is in need of detox from opiates, alcohol, benzos, Methadone, or Suboxone, please do not hesitant to call Jennifer Pius at 1-877-77-DETOX (33869). Help, hope and healing begin here!