While we all have different journeys in alcohol recovery, most will agree that accountability is a crucial component when it comes to staying clean and sober. Once we admit we want to rebuild our lives—whether it’s to a close friend, a family member or all our followers on Instagram—it becomes a lot harder to just pick up a drink or pop a pill. After all, who wants to risk having to come clean and admit we lost focus for a sec—or, er, three years? Accountability is how we stay on track and we all have people, places and things that have helped us reach our recovery goals.
This is how accountability has worked for Kelly.
What does accountability mean to you?
To me it means sticking to the goals I have set, telling on myself when I’m not doing the next right thing, and having partners in my life that I can discuss successes and setbacks with. It also means being completely honest about my recovery as much as I can.
Does the fact that people know about your recovery play into you staying sober? How?
Yes, definitely. It’s much harder to think about drinking when literally everyone in my life, plus thousands of followers, knows about my sobriety. People look to me for answers, advice and guidance, which keeps me accountable. I do not want to let anyone down; not my loved ones, not my recovery peers and especially not my fans and followers. It’s also helpful when people know about my recovery because it reminds them to be mindful of putting me in awkward situations with alcohol or drugs. They understand where and with whom I feel comfortable. I can mostly avoid being offered a drink when I go places because people in my life know I’m sober and that makes life a little bit easier.
Who or what are you accountable to in your recovery?
My husband. My family and loved ones, and all of the relationships in my life. My blog followers and the meetings I attend. I am also accountable to the members of the Bloom Club group I started with a fellow sober writer.
How important is having a community to your staying sober? Why?
I think community is essential to success in sobriety. So many of us tend to isolate and feel like there is no one in the world who could have felt or overcome the pain we have. That’s why it’s imperative to find someone who says those comforting words: “Me too.” Our burdens are lighter when we can share them with others and aren’t left wondering if we are the only one struggling. I spent my first year of sobriety without having any sober friends. It was lonely and hard. When I finally went to 12-step meetings, I was dumbfounded by how people in those rooms knew how I was feeling and had stories I could relate to. Today, I am a part of several online recovery communities that have empowered me and allowed me to empower others.
What advice would you give someone who wants to get or stay sober?
It might seem like a daunting and upsetting decision but it will lead you to the best days of your life. You do not have to live with the pain, shame, guilt and self-loathing. There is a way out and that way is sobriety.
How important do you think transparency is in your recovery?
For me, it’s essential. One of the pillars of my recovery is authenticity. To be authentic I must be honest and transparent. I did a lot of lying and was in denial for many years while I was drinking and I’m grateful I don’t have to do that in recovery.
How does it feel to earn people’s trust back now that you’re sober?
It feels wonderful to finally be dependable, honest, and authentic. It feels right and powerful to be able to show up for my loved ones and for my life. I feel like I was walking around in a deep sleep for years and it’s liberating to be awake. Having people trust me is part of the whole deal.
For the ultimate in accountability Soberlink’s Share Program provides recovering individuals a technology to build accountability and structure. The program is designed for those who want to share their sobriety with their support network.
About the Author
Soberlink supports accountability for sobriety through a comprehensive alcohol monitoring system. Combining a breathalyzer with wireless connectivity, the portable design and technology includes facial recognition, tamper detection and real-time reporting. Soberlink proves sobriety with reliability to foster trust and peace of mind.