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One Day At A Time - What does it really mean?
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TOPIC: One Day At A Time - What does it really mean? 3660 Views

One Day At A Time - What does it really mean? 11 May 2016 20:17 #287536

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ODAAT, Or One Day At A Time, is a concept that is very helpful - crucial in fact to many people working on recovery.
But what it actually means is not so simple.
I thought I knew, and I was corrected. I thought I learnt the new meaning, but I was wrong again.
The purpose of this thread is for those people with experience in odaat, to have a place to explain to us others the true meaning (or their true meaning, if that's the case), and for those who want to hear it, to come, read, ask, (yes - even debate!) and learn.

So, Let the fun begin
BIG SHOT!
Free Choice?!
Yirai's Memories
STORY TIME :)

Dr. Seuss - You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose. You're on your own, and you know what you know. And you are the guy who'll decide where to go.

FSKOT! (Fell Shmell--Keep on Trucking) (The Rebba R' Bards)

Re: One Day At A Time - What does it really mean? 11 May 2016 20:18 #287537

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"shmirashachaim" post=286259 date=1462160372
I also have been thinking about the one day principle. Can someone give me some clarity on it? I feel as if I am deluding myself because I really want to look at a lifetime of sobriety. How can I honestly say that I am only looking to be sober today, and all that matters is today, when I really want tomorrow as well?


"realsimcha" post=286270 date=1462161689
There are gedolei program on this site who can certainly explain it better than I can. But a thought: I think its not about one day its about today - meaning now. Everything is in the hands of Hashem and the future remains to be seen, but for now we ask Hashem to give us sobriety at this present moment. Now. And now I can do. and if I keep doing now ... well you see where that can go ...

BIG SHOT!
Free Choice?!
Yirai's Memories
STORY TIME :)

Dr. Seuss - You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose. You're on your own, and you know what you know. And you are the guy who'll decide where to go.

FSKOT! (Fell Shmell--Keep on Trucking) (The Rebba R' Bards)
Last Edit: 11 May 2016 20:24 by stillgoing.

Re: One Day At A Time - What does it really mean? 11 May 2016 20:18 #287538

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Rsvd

"cordnoy" post=286271 date=1462162763
I don't have much control over today, but I certainly have no right to worry about tomorrow. [I shouldn't do anything today to jeopardize my tomorrow, but I cannot be concerned with it.]



"Shlomo24" post=286274 date=1462177856
For me, one day at a time means that I'm not going to worry about yesterday or tomorrow that much. Obviously I am going to try to avoid doing things that cause long-term harm, ex. smoking. I am also going to do things that can set me up for the future, ex. college. BUT, I have no control over yesterday or tomorrow, so planning things too far in advance is something I try to avoid. Saying "Im Yirtzeh Hashem" doesn't help me, by the way.

In terms of wanting continual sobriety, I can't be sober in the future without being sober in the present. And I only have the ability to be sober in the present, I am powerless over the future, whatever God wants is what will happen. So there is no use worrying or thinking about "when will I EVER get long-term sobriety!" because I have absolutely no control over that. Also, ODAAT helps me when I am struggling, I have said on occasion that I will act out tomorrow, but not today. Or even act out in an hour, but not now. I can stay sober for a day or an hour, right? Another thing that ODDAt means to me is that yesterday's sobriety has nothing to do with today. That is the reason why I have my day count permanently set at 1 day because I believe that is important for me to remember that today is the only day that counts. I could be sober for a while before or have just acted out, still today is the only day that counts. An XA, (any anonymous group), phrase is "The person with the longest sobriety is the person who woke up earliest today".



 
BIG SHOT!
Free Choice?!
Yirai's Memories
STORY TIME :)

Dr. Seuss - You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose. You're on your own, and you know what you know. And you are the guy who'll decide where to go.

FSKOT! (Fell Shmell--Keep on Trucking) (The Rebba R' Bards)
Last Edit: 11 May 2016 20:27 by stillgoing.

Re: One Day At A Time - What does it really mean? 11 May 2016 20:18 #287539

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"inastruggle" post=287150 date=1462723681
There's a major principle that's taught here called "one day at a time" that should help with your other fears. There are a lot of nuances to it but I'll try to sum it up.

We never know what's going to happen, all we can affect is today. There's no point in worrying about tomorrow since it doesn't help us, just hurts us. Even if we end up falling tomorrow, at least today we'll be happy because we're clean. Today is all that counts, it's all that we should focus on at any given day. (This doesn't mean we shouldn't plan ahead or learn from the past, it means that that's all we should do and not any more.)

Will we stay clean forever? Day after day, month after month, year after year, without a single slip or fall? Who cares, today is what counts.



"Avrohom" post=287232 date=1462771636
The concept of one day at a time,  is one that I've long struggled with. Sometimes that's when I'm doing better, sometimes when I'm doing worse. Always the issue is, that my biggest motivation is often longer term then "today". 
....
My problem is, that often when i'm only thinking about "today", i don't have a motivation to hold back "today".



"Yosef Hatzadik" post=287233 date=1462773501
I can't take a shower today to wash off tomorrow's dirt. All I can afford to focus on today is, today.
...
I can't bite off more than I can chew.

At times, if I were to commit to never again look at porn, I will fail. Because I enjoy porn too much to just give up on never having it again. But I can definitely manage without porn or other Lust TODAY.... 



"Yesod" post=287251 date=1462801736
I also have just one question,  are you in need of a vacuum cleaner........



"stillgoing" post=287373 date=1462892984
Avrohom, I can relate very much to what you are saying. I don't believe (and perhaps others will disagree) that odaat (One Day At A Time) means completely ignore the rest of your life. That's why I like Yesod's map example. We need to have long term plans, and I think long term goals, but each and every day when we are living our lives and we are faced with temptation, it doesn't always help to say "oy, if I act out now I'll break my streak" (sometimes it does help, which is why the 90 day chart is a good idea), but sometimes we'll say "long term smong term, I want this junk NOW." That's where it helps to say odaat. Will I be clean tomorrow, who knows, next year - too long to think about, can I make this day count as an absolute win over my animalistic dirty lust - YES! Today I Can Do It! And Today I Will! 



 
BIG SHOT!
Free Choice?!
Yirai's Memories
STORY TIME :)

Dr. Seuss - You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose. You're on your own, and you know what you know. And you are the guy who'll decide where to go.

FSKOT! (Fell Shmell--Keep on Trucking) (The Rebba R' Bards)
Last Edit: 11 May 2016 21:43 by stillgoing.

Re: One Day At A Time - What does it really mean? 11 May 2016 22:05 #287552

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From a group email

SG "If today I am feeling lustful, and I have not set up a long term plan.. then why would I Want to stay clean 'just for today' . Today, I want to act out. Tomorrow I'll be clean.

CORDNOY: Go right ahead

SG: Slicha, I don't understand your response.
Gracias

CORDNOY: The answer is that if you wanna act out today, go right ahead.

I wanna as well, but I know that I can't afford to.

SG: Why can't you afford to? Its just one day?

CORDNOY: Several reasons, but the practical one is that one day will turn into many.

Besides that, I experienced liberation, and slavery - not even for one day, does not interest me at all.

SG: To your first line, the practical answer is that if you are worried that one will turn into many, then you are taking tomorrow into consideration.

and for the second line, are you saying that you don't have times anymore that you are at a risk of giving in? That's pretty cool. Halivay by me.

CORDNOY: 1 it is today's decision.
2 I can lust and there is risk. The thought of slavery helps me today.

SG: To both, of course we are making the decision today, but it seem like you are taking the rest of your life into consideration while making that decision.
I thought that odaat is about only making the Commitment for today, but it seems to me that the Motivation still needs to take the rest of our life into consideration.

DOV: Rather, it is very different, as I tried to express during the call today. Did you hear that part, or should I review it? Whatever you want, man.

OK Everybody, I’m all out of ideas. Is odaat a really simple concept and im just missing the sail boat, or can a little more clarification here help everyone.

BIG SHOT!
Free Choice?!
Yirai's Memories
STORY TIME :)

Dr. Seuss - You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose. You're on your own, and you know what you know. And you are the guy who'll decide where to go.

FSKOT! (Fell Shmell--Keep on Trucking) (The Rebba R' Bards)

Re: One Day At A Time - What does it really mean? 11 May 2016 23:57 #287557

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Someone (little me) wrote to you in the email what he understood from Dov 

if we don't live life, then we are not doing the real "One day AAT", rather "One white knuckle at a time"
My Story---------Dov Quotes


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Re: One Day At A Time - What does it really mean? 12 May 2016 01:09 #287561

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I think we need to differentiate between planning for tomorrow, and worrying about tomorrow. 
!אנא עבדא דקודשא בריך הוא

וּבְיָדְךָ כֹּחַ וּגְבוּרָה וּבְיָדְךָ לְגַדֵּל וּלְחַזֵּק לַכֹּל

And every day that you want to waste, that you want to waste, you can
And every day that you want to wake up, that you want to wake, you can
And every day that you want to change, that you want to change, yeah
I'll help you see it through...

My story: guardyoureyes.com/forum/19-Introduce-Yourself/111583-hello-my-friends

Re: One Day At A Time - What does it really mean? 12 May 2016 03:16 #287576

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From the Gye Member FAQ:

Taking it one day at a time means that we don’t worry about what happened in the past and what will happen in the future. We just focus on making the right choices right now, at this moment. Just as we can’t eat, sleep or go to the bathroom for tomorrow, we also can’t stay clean for tomorrow. We can only stay clean for today. If we keep this in mind at all times, it makes staying clean much easier. It helps to say everyday: “Today, I am clean, no matter what!"
I am happy to speak on the phone. Please email me at dms1234ongye@gmail.com

My name is Daniel, I go to face to face meetings and I work the 12 steps with a sponsor. 

Re: One Day At A Time - What does it really mean? 12 May 2016 04:52 #287586

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Gevura Shebyesod wrote on 12 May 2016 01:09:
I think we need to differentiate between planning for tomorrow, and worrying about tomorrow. 

So today we should plan for tomorrow, but only worry about today?

Re: One Day At A Time - What does it really mean? 12 May 2016 10:47 #287598

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Imagine if someone was told that his life is ending in 24 hours. would he plan, worry, or even think about the tomorrow?

Instead of worrying and planning, just have the present in mind. Now I wont act out, what will be later will be dealt later.

The more we say NO the easier it becomes to say NO again



I hope what I say makes sense?
 NO, It's not all or nothing, just every bit counts!

I failed yesterday, and I might fail tomorrow. But just for today I'm going to give it a try.


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Re: One Day At A Time - What does it really mean? 12 May 2016 11:02 #287599

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But dt, if someones life was ending in 24 hours he might well decide to forget about his health and long term care and just enjoy today in the way that his impulse tells him to.

Re: One Day At A Time - What does it really mean? 12 May 2016 16:55 #287630

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I think worrying is a bad idea in general
I am happy to speak on the phone. Please email me at dms1234ongye@gmail.com

My name is Daniel, I go to face to face meetings and I work the 12 steps with a sponsor. 

Re: One Day At A Time - What does it really mean? 12 May 2016 18:53 #287641

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mirror wrote on 12 May 2016 11:02:
But dt, if someones life was ending in 24 hours he might well decide to forget about his health and long term care and just enjoy today in the way that his impulse tells him to.

Are you sure that is the best way? Also, do you have your own thread? I have been trying to find your story...
What works for me: 1) Honesty 2) Meetings 3) 12-step 4) Listening to my Sponsor 5) Not doing what I want to do 6) Inviting the God of my understanding into my life

"I can't do it, God can help." | "Everything I want is on the other side of fear." | "Where there is deprivation there is addiction." | "Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery." | "Stop stopping, start living."

My thread: Big Steps

Email: iam24zman@gmail.com

Re: One Day At A Time - What does it really mean? 12 May 2016 20:01 #287652

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I dont't know if it is the best idea, but i think many people might act that way.
I perfer not to start my own introduction thread right now if that is ok, i am not completely new here. In short, i am struggling with much of the same as all of us. My day count (not that high) is next to my name on the left.
Thanks for asking.

Re: One Day At A Time - What does it really mean? 15 May 2016 03:17 #287786

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This is a great post on the topic as well.

It's from Dov. For some reason I'm having trouble quoting it directly so you can find it here
guardyoureyes.com/forum/4-On-the-Way-to-90-Days/213548-with-Hashems-help?limit=15&start=15#214802



 'Holding our breath' is a totally different experience than recovery offers. This story illustrates what 'holding breath' is:

The Steipler zt"l was once on guard duty in the Russian or Polish army on Shabbos - and his coat was in a tree, so it would be assur for him to take it down and use it! He decided to stay in place the entire shift without his coat. But it was terribly cold and driving him nuts. How could he stay put?!

He told himself that he could withstand the cold for just a minute (or hour?)...and he did! When that minute was over, he told himself that he just proved that he can tolerate the bitter cold for just a minute. So here before him is: a minute! He then waited a(nother) minute. When it was over, he thought: here before me is another one of those minute-thingies. I can definitely hang on just a minute! So he held on, and tolerated the cold for just a minute.

Etc, etc, and the entire night passed! Amazing. Beautiful.

AND THAT IS NOT AT ALL WHAT 'ONE DAY AT A TIME', MEANS! For what the Steipler did was a gimmick. A mind game. And it worked for him, for one night or day...it may work for more than one day - it may even work for a lifetime, who knows? And if I could stay sober that way for a lifetime, I would probably not take it. It would be gehinnom, would keep me good-and-miserable/crazy, and would generally...suck. I would surely eventually run to lust again just to get out of such a stupid (but kosher!) life. Yup.

But: the Steipler could not have actually held his breath all night using this gimmick. Correct? After a few minutes (about 2-3), a human knows he must breathe, period. So what would you do if someone told you he would give you a million (yep, a million!) bucks if you held your breath for two hours? Would you breath deeply and go give it a try? Silly, of course not. Why suffer for no reason and nothing in the end, anyway?

People who are not sincerely giving up lust for today are just sitting ducks. They are just holding their breath and 'holding back' one day at a time. It does not work. Eventually they will have to breathe. And Hashem knows this. It is a twisting of the meaning of 'one day at a time'.

I know they will say 'vatishlach es amosoh - she sent forth her arm' and all the sweet, encouraging droshos on that. But for an addict, it just does not work here! And in the meantime, the marriage and family are brutalized. Yuch.

[A nasty little digression :pinch:
When B'nei Yisroel (on Rosh chodesh Nissan) went to take the korban Pesach (in four more days!) Hashem writes: "[i]And Bn"Y went and did as Moshe commanded them.[/i]" Rashi brings that they went with the intention, knowing that come the 10th of Nissan, they'd take the goat/lamb, and come the 14th, they'd shecht it, etc. In their hearts, it was a done deal. So from right then, Hashem says He considers it that they already did it all!.

Sadly, the converse is also true. We all know in our hearts that we cannot hold our breath forever. So, as inspired as we may be to hold our breath and resist getting that sweet orgasm/fantasy/porn joy we need...we are full-aware that we are eventually gonna pop. We have not given it up at all, see it as an eventual necessity, and a masculine right. The only guarantee, then, is that we will need to act out when the maximum tolerance of # days clean is reached. So it is almost as though they are already masturbating, in some respect. By the Korban pesach it means they are given over to G-d and committed to doing His Will - and by lust, it means they are given over to lust and committed to doing nothing real about stopping. So what's the use? May Hashem save me from making this mistake and being in that category, one day at a time.

I believe this is true for most ppl who take lots of half-measures and just 'fight it' (but see the exception below).

Therefore, only giving it up in our hearts one day at a time is useful and bears fruit, and that is the 12 step program way - not resisting 'one day at a time'. Get it?

There is one exception to this idea, and it is an important qualification: There are surely some who do the TapHsiC, or 90-day wall thingy, or counting the days, etc...holding their breath all the way - and it works! Because they did experience abstinence from their prize, after all, and did not die. Amazingly, their penises did not fall off. And abstinence sometimes makes it clear to the person that he does not, in fact, really need it at all!

Surprise!

But I doubt that such things will work for most people in the long run - and certainly not for addicts. For when the day comes that they desire it again as strong as ever, they will be 100% convinced again that they can't live without it, period. Back to square one. But surrender one day at a time really does work for alcoholics and others, all over the world.
End of the nasty little digression. ]

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