Bringing people together in recovery the LifeRing Way
A Convenor’s Handbook
How was your week? is the starter topic for most LifeRing meetings — an invitation to report on the person’s recovery work since the last meeting, and look forward to the challenges of the coming week. This book describes the deeper healing processes that are at work beneath the surface of this simple format and empowers the meeting facilitator to set these forces in motion and keep them on track.
How Was Your Week? is a handbook for the core members of the LifeRing network: the people who start and lead LifeRing meetings, or perform other services that keep the organization humming. To “convene” means to bring people together. Bringing people together in recovery the LifeRing way is what LifeRing meeting facilitators do, which is why they are known in the organization as “convenors.”
The book covers the basic model of the LifeRing recovery process: the division of the addicted mind into an addict self (A) and a sober self (S). It outlines the fundamental process at work in LifeRing meetings: empowerment of the sober self. It explains the proper role of the convenor in facilitating this process. It looks at the dynamics at work in the meeting room. It discusses common issues and problems that may arise and suggests methods of handling them. The work also looks at the nuts and bolts of the meeting framework, such as door signs, signup sheets, passing the basket, and distributing literature. There is a chapter on the LifeRing process online in chat rooms and other web venues, and a chapter on the annual LifeRing Congress.
Discussion of the basic philosophy of LifeRing — the three S — is a major portion of the book. Chapters on Sobriety (Abstinence), Secularity, and Self-Help offer the deepest and most detailed analysis of these foundations in print. A separate chapter introduces the basics of building a personal recovery program. Although aimed primarily at the convenor, the book is accessible to anyone who wants a deeper understanding of what LifeRing is about.
A major chapter (Ch. 15) outlines the work involved in starting a new LifeRing meeting. Everything is covered here from the initial contacts to the final successful passing of the baton. This chapter is the indispensable guide for the pioneers who establish a LifeRing presence in new territory.
An excerpt from the book, consisting of the first two chapters plus Table of Contents and Index, is available for free download on this website at Selections from HWYW in pdf format.
To purchase How Was Your Week? online, please go to the LifeRing Bookstore. Originally published in 2003, How Was Your Week? is now in its second edition (2015). This edition is updated, expanded, easier to read, and professionally printed and bound with a handsome full-color cover.