In early recovery, it was suggested "don't drink/use, stay out of relationships, go to meetings, change people, places and things and get a sponsor." While the suggestion to abstain from alcohol and drugs was the most important suggestion, the suggestion to get a sponsor was second in importance. Without a person to guide me through the steps or demonstrate sobriety to me, I would be lost.
At first, I picked a sponsor who was as well as me (which means not well at all!!) It took a while until I realized it wasn't okay to smoke pot "once in a while" with twelve years of so-called sobriety. Next, a professional, Jewish woman like myself approached me to offer me guidance after announcing I was sponsorless.
I went through the steps with her and slowly pushed her away when a sexier sponsor caught my eye. He (yes, I did say he!) was Italian, suave, brilliant and emotionally unavailable. He was exactly what I needed because I had no self worth and chasing him gave me a sense of purpose!
Thankfully, the wisdom he emparted was solid and chasing him from meeting to meeting enabled me to get quite an education on recovery. He went to 4-5 meetings a day and so did I! Eventually, he broke up with me and I had to find a power I could rely on. I found a woman with 25 years to take me through the steps again and she taught me how to use the steps to strengthen my connection with my higher self, which I call G-d.
When she picked up a pill after her husband died, I couldn't believe it. This was the one human being in the world who demonstrated the principles of recovery to me in a consistent manner. If she could pick up, no one was safe! I looked for another woman to replace her and couldnt find someone with her type of sobriety.