We also recommend looking for someone who seems to be growing and is esteemed by others. This must be a mature person who keeps confidences and one you trust enough to be totally open without holding back.
Before looking for an AP, it’s important to understand why an AP is important to the recovery process. Here are six reasons to choose an accountability partner:
ACCOUNTABILITY: Having a person who knows enough about us to ask the right, sometimes hard, questions will help us be successful. Those in early recovery are often still plagued with addictive thinking. That’s why accountability is so important.
PRIDE: Ego, grandiosity, and self-centeredness (“I can do this all by myself, I don’t need help from anyone”)will get in the way of recovery. There is an ancient proverb that says, “Pride goes before a fall.” Ultimately, an AP helps us to keep from getting trapped by our own false sense of “powerfulness” or “powerlessness” and keeps us humble.
HONESTY: It’s really easy to fool others and even ourselves. We’ve learned how to look really good on the outside while we’re doing terrible on the inside. Here again, if we’ve been open with our AP about our personal issues, they will hold us accountable and confront us when we’ve slipped into dishonesty.
OBJECTIVITY: “Stinking thinking” is a real trap. Having a person committed to being a “sounding board” for us gives us someone who can say stuff like, “I don’t think you are understanding that correctly” or “Have you considered this might be what’s really going on?” This is especially helpful in the always difficult area of relationships in which all recovering people struggle. Most others in our lives have some “vested interest” in how we behave or how well we do in our lives. It’s hard for these folks to be very objective. So, we need someone who doesn’t have as much at stake to help us to steer a clear course.
ENCOURAGEMENT: We may be apt to get down on ourselves at times because of things over which we have little or no control. Having an objective and supportive person who understands the process of recovery helps us keep a healthy perspective. Sometimes, we need the support and hope provided by our AP to keep growing. Our AP reminds us that we can make it!
SPIRITUAL: The key to all recovery is spiritual. In other words, this is all about growing in your walk with the Lord and becoming more Christ-like. A good AP will encourage you in the spiritual disciplines of reading God’s Word, prayer, humility, and worship.
The role of the AP is significant to the success of your recovery. Keep this in mind: “A lot of people have gone further than they thought they could because someone else thought they could” (Zig Ziglar).