There are certain accomplishments in life that are underappreciated. Most people don't know how difficult it is to complete a marathon or build furniture from scratch so they downplay these achievements.

The same goes for getting sober. While not everyone gives addiction recovery the recognition it deserves, people in Alcoholics Anonymous and other organizations don't let this stop them.

The AA chip system is a way for you to remember and enjoy your accomplishment. Here's your crash course on these treasured coins.

The Basics of AA Chips

Most people know that AA chips signify the amount of time you've been sober. However, they're loaded with other meaningful symbols.

Symbols like the AA circle and triangle icon remind you of the lessons you've learned about addiction and sobriety along to way. To help you stay on track, the back of each AA chip features the serenity prayer.

An AA chip serves as a trophy for your sobriety, but it's even more helpful. Many recovering alcoholics carry their latest chip with them every day. It's a reminder of how hard you've worked and what you stand to lose if you relapse. 

How the AA Chip System Works

Now you know what an AA chip includes and what it signifies, but when will you start earning yours? Here's what you can expect on your sobriety journey. 

The Day One Chip

One of the hardest parts of getting sober is taking the first step and showing a commitment to recovery. This is why AA recognizes your first 24 hours of sobriety as a chip-worthy achievement.

After 24 hours sober, you'll receive your day one AA chip. These chips are usually white to signify the fresh start of your new, sober life. 

Monthly Chips

After earning your 24-hour chip, you'll start earning a chip for every month of sobriety you have.

Each monthly chip has a different color. For example, 30-day chips are often red, while 60-day chips are gold and 90-day chips are green. These colors can vary from one AA group to another, though.

You'll keep collecting monthly AA chips until you reach the envied status of being one year sober.

Yearly Chips

If recovering addicts received a chip for every month of sobriety for the rest of their lives, you'd fill your closet in no time.

When you hit the one year mark in your sobriety, you'll receive a one-year chip which is usually bronze. From this point forward, you'll get a bronze AA chip for each additional year of recovery, 

Using Your Own AA Chip System

The chip system is a helpful way to recognize your accomplishments and to help you keep your recovery on track. There's no reason it has to be limited to sobriety, though.

Other addiction recovery programs have started using the AA chip system too. You can even institute the system on your own for whatever ongoing goals you may have, like losing weight or staying out of jail.

Whether you're an AA leader, a recovering addict, or someone working through another lifelong journey, browse our selection of AA chips online.