I hate to break the news, but there is no more perfect time to quit than right now. That’s right. Now. Frightening isn’t it? Sometimes that is what the truth is. You can distort the truth, deny the truth, or scoff at the truth, but that does not make it less so. The truth is the truth.

Now is now. Now is not next week or any other time. Now is right now. There is no better moment in time than right now. Quitting this minute means this minute is the end of mistreatment of your body and mind. There is no day like today. Because more days of using just add to the harm. No day will be easier. No day is easier. Today is the easiest day. Think about that.

Life presents all the excuses we need to put things off. It’s my birthday coming up, my parents’ anniversary; I am looking for a new job, or I have to wait until I am in a better place. Blah, blah. What you need is motivation. Suppose someone said, Quit today and I will give you one hundred thousand dollars? Whoa, you say, that would be the motivation I need. But really, no outside motivation compares to the motivation from within.

You might start because of outside motivation, but rarely would you stay in a lasting recovery. For so many of you, there is never enough internal motivation. The pull of the drug remains stronger, and so no motivation is strong enough.

Everyone has to find the strength inside of themselves. That is truly the only motivation that propels you to save yourself. Some people say that you have to hit bottom before you can start to come back up, and for some that is true. For others, they can see that waiting to hit bottom is not an option. They have seen what the bottom looks like, and it is not a pretty picture. Still others cannot stop even when they have hit that bottom. There are those that come into recovery because others have begged it or demanded it. That is not the motivation that makes for a lasting recovery. This motivation must come from within. This motivation can be developed. You can develop the motivation by being positive in your thinking that you can do this. By visualizing your joy, your pride, and your health returning, you actually make good thoughts stronger. Good thoughts bring you good results. Be relentless in directing your mind for your good. Banish negativity. “Doubt cannot linger without your consent,” so said King Solomon, the biblical king. Reflect upon the truth and strength of that statement.

If you are still willing and hoping that recovery can be yours, do not hesitate. If you are one of the luckier ones that can still make a decision because you are not completely spaced out, do not hesitate. If you are young and haven’t done irreparable damage to your brain, do not hesitate. If you are thinking you are too scared, too unsure you can make it, even then, do not hesitate. If you toy with the idea that you want to stop, do not hesitate.

The perfect time to quit is now. Not later, not tomorrow, now.

Pick up the phone. Now. Call someone now. Ask for help now.

Imagine your life with choice. Picture yourself as determined to stay the course. Picture you starting out each day with discipline. Picture what you feel like, look like, act like, and how you think. Becoming able to recognize negative-habit thinking and not wasting a moment to distract that thought is within your power. Or even imaging that the negative thought is just like a wave that comes, and just like a wave, it ebbs out. You cannot control the thoughts that come into your mind, but you can choose which ones you want to keep, to dwell upon, to act upon. That you can do.

AA and NA have it spot-on. One day at a time. Don’t even think past this day. Just for today, you can say this is the perfect day to quit. Every day you can say this is a perfect day to give myself the motivation I need and want to stay quit. Remind yourself that no one can take a thought away from you. You are the master of your mind. This is your turning point, your crossroad, your moment of truth. The perfect time is now. Don’t let this moment get away. Don’t double-cross yourself. Stand tall and be prouder of this decision than any other you have ever made. Fight as hard as you can to make this moment the perfect time to quit because it is.