Almost everyone who has gotten clean and sober knows the unique terror of waking up after a wild night and looking at your phone. The texts, calls, and messages sent while under the influence can be a brutal reminder of how when we’re drunk or high, we’re not ourselves.
But putting down drinks and drugs doesn’t mean that you can let your fingers fly across your phone or keyboard with abandon. In recovery, it’s still very possible to relay messages that you will later regret, or that will hurt the ones you love.
Just because you’re clean and sober doesn’t mean you’re right in every situation, or the authority on what’s right and wrong.
Before you send a text or email, think about whether you might have to make an amends after sending it. Looking ahead to the consequences of an action means you can decide not to take it, saving yourself so much trouble in the long run.
And if you’re having trouble deciding, there’s a handy five-point checklist you can run through before you decide to click send: THINK.
Is what you’re about to send THOUGHTFUL? Are you sure you’re not sending it emotionally, and on an impulse?
Is it INTELLIGENT? Does it really represent your best thinking and highest self?
Is it NECESSARY? Does the risk of hurting the person on the other end by relaying your message outweigh the potential benefits?
And is it KIND?
If you think that what you want to say clears each of those hurdles, then go ahead and make that call or click send. But it never hurts to sleep on it first!