One Day At A Time

Most people know the saying “One Day At A Time” but you may not know it is associated with Alcoholics Anonymous.  This saying offers encouragement and hope to people keeping their focus on 24 hours.  It focuses on the importance of being grateful for sobriety in this day.  It represents the importance of  living each day as it comes in order to remain sober and grateful.  

Photo by Andrew Neel on

To live one day at a time is to focus on the present moment, and to not concern yourself about the past or the future. Recovering individuals may feel guilt and shame about their past addictive behaviors.  In addition, recovering individuals may be unsure about their future and anxious regarding the uncertainty of it.  Focusing on the goals of the present moment allows these individuals to work on developing useful coping skills now, so that they are prepared for the future and able to handle the past.

“The best thing about the future is that it comes one day at a time.” 

Abraham Lincoln

During this pandemic, it is important for all of us to live with this saying in mind.  We need to live one day at a time in order to be able to function.  If we dwell too much on the past, then we can become sad remembering the good times spent with friends and loved ones.  If we think too much about the future, we can become anxious because of the unknown state of things in our country.  

Tips for Living One Day at a Time:

  • Keep a positive attitude
  • Take on one problem at a time
  • Don’t live in “auto-pilot”
  • Be kind to others 
  • Love yourself
  • Keep a journal
  • Step outside of your comfort zone to try new things
  • Take care of your mind and body
  • Don’t worry about “what-if’s”
  • Create daily goals
Photo by Lukas Rychvalsky on

One technique that can help us to learn to remain in the present moment is mindfulness meditation. This is meditation with an inner focus on our emotions, concerns, and goals. With practice and patience, meditation can help to shape our thinking and help us remain in the present moment.

“A good friend of mine once told me that each morning when you wake up, think about winning the day.  Don’t worry about a week from now or a month from now – just think about one day at a time. If you are worried about the mountain in the distance, you might trip over the molehill right in front of you.  Win the day!”  

Drew Brees

During this pandemic/quarantine, we may become flooded with emotions that are unusual for us  to experience.  It may seem challenging, overwhelming, and even impossible to deal with these feelings some days.  Taking it one day at a time means managing these emotions individually, as they come up. It’s much easier to cope with present problems rather than to worry about all of the possible potential problems and become stressed. If we are able to work on what is in front of us, rather than worry about prospective problems, then we will be better able to control our suffering. 

It is important to remember that we only get to live each day once, so make it fantastic.  

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