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15 Quotes of Encouragement for Sobriety

Motivational enhancement therapy is a method of treatment that encourages an addict to undergo a motivated change within themselves. It is one of the effective methods of treatment for addiction, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Motivation can therefore be seen as a part of getting and remaining sober. During recovery, motivation can waver; however, quotes of encouragement for sobriety can help to keep a person motivated during their recovery. 

5 Minute Read | Published Aug 09 2023 | Updated Mar 08 2024 Expert Verified
Emma Collins
Written by
David Levin
Reviewed by
Emma Collins
Written by
David Levin
Reviewed by


Discover more sobriety motivation here

Motivational enhancement therapy has been found to be particularly effective for those overcoming alcohol use disorder. Many famous people such as Matthew Perry, Robert Downey Jr., and Daniel Radcliff have been through rehab and remained sober. Whether through self-motivation or the use of encouraging words for recovering alcoholics, they have achieved a happy, sober state. To help you on your recovery journey, we will look at 15 quotes of encouragement for sobriety to help you through the tougher days.

Words of Encouragement for Sobriety

The following quotes of encouragement for sobriety will be followed by a short interpretation in an effort to enhance the effects they may have.

1. “If you know someone who tries to drown their sorrows, you might tell them that sorrows know how to swim.” – Ann Landers

This quote helps to remind people that alcohol abuse is a quick fix that never really fixes a problem; it just postpones dealing with the problem because alcohol does not resolve anything.

2. “Don’t let the past steal your present.” – Terri Guillemets

The next of our quotes of encouragement for sobriety reminds us that our past can haunt our present and continue to affect our current wellbeing if we let it.

3. “The thing is, if I don’t have sobriety, I don’t have anything.” – Matthew Perry

These words of encouragement for sobriety by the famous “Friends” star remind us that sobriety isn’t just a passing thing; it is a way of life and a reason for being – without it, your life can just slip away.

4. “I think it’s important for me to show the world that sobriety hasn’t made me soft. I’m on a mission to prove I’m still a nutcase.” – Steve-O

The next of our quotes of encouragement for sobriety is by the star of the “Jack-Ass” franchise. In it, he reminds people that he is who he is not because of his previous drinking habits, but because it is who he truly is, and alcohol was merely taking away from that.

5. “My main focus in sobriety has been to replace fear with faith or love.” – Steve-O

Another of the encouraging words for recovering alcoholics by Steve-O shows how he changed his life by embracing love and faith, and casting fear and the unknown out of his mind.

6. “I’m pretty confident about my sobriety, but I don’t want to get too confident because that’s when I’ll crash.” – Mary Docter

One of the pitfalls that people may run into during their sobriety is overconfidence. The reason that overconfidence becomes is problem is that it often causes a person to stop with their relapse prevention plan – the very thing that is keeping them sober.

7. “There’s not a drug on earth can make life meaningful.” – Sarah Kane

One of the biggest questions in life is “what’s the meaning of it?” For some it may be their vocation while others may find meaning in their family or helping those less fortunate. Purpose and meaning in life can never come from a substance, only from embracing life.

8. “Hit the bottom and get back up; or hit the bottle and stay down.” – Anthony Liccione

Life is full of challenges for everyone. Sometimes life throws hard lessons our way that can make us feel like it cannot possibly get any worse, but this is when we find courage and get back up stronger than before. If we interfere with this process with alcohol, we don’t learn and we don’t get stronger; we just stay in the same place.

9. “Hardships often prepare ordinary people for an extraordinary destiny.” – C.S. Lewis

It is through hardships that we strive to become better and meet our destiny. The best things in life don’t come easy, but through the hardships, you can find your way to a life you never thought possible.

10. “Sometimes we motivate ourselves by thinking of what we want to become. Sometimes we motivate ourselves by thinking about who we don’t ever want to be again.” – Shane Niemeyer

A bad day when your sober is still nothing compared to what you used to be and go through in your days of alcoholism. Let that motivate you to never go back to that state again, even if you aren’t quite where you want to be in life yet.

11. “If you can quit for a day, you can quit for a lifetime.” – Benjamin Alire Sáenz

It’s important to remember that cravings don’t last forever – in fact, they tend to only last for around 15 to 30 minutes at a time. When faced with a tougher-than-usual day, remember that all you have to do is get through that hour or that day, and don’t worry about your future sobriety because all you have to do is get through this moment.

12. “There is no better high than discovery.” – Edward O. Wilson

Every single “high” from alcohol or drugs is always short-lived. It’s only a matter of time before the joy or relief you felt is met with an equally negative experience. The only long-lasting “high” that one can experience is discovery of the world and of yourself.

13. “Getting sober is a radically creative act.” – Meredith Bell

Alcohol abuse only takes; it never gives. It takes happiness, meaning, and new experience away from those cannot stop drinking. Through sobriety, one finds the road to creativity and new experience again.

14. “Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out.” – Robert Collier

As with anything in life, success doesn’t usually come from a single moment, but rather a culmination of many small efforts that are done over a long time. Every day that passes in your sobriety is another day closer to a lifetime of success.

15. “The only person you are destined to become is the person you decide to be.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Destiny is a like a dance between you and the forces of the world. We make choices along the way that mold our experience and who we become. Only through your own effort can you become the person you are destined to be.


bullet National Library of Medicine
"Enhancing Motivation for Change in Substance Abuse Treatment."
Retrieved on October 23, 2018
bullet National Institute on Drug Abuse
"Drugs, Brains, and Behavior: The Science of Addiction Treatment and Recovery"
Retrieved on October 23, 2018

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