I have a designated day and set time of the day to make my "Check-in" call to my sponsor.
In addition to that -- I have to either write him a detailed email or send him a letter, so that he
receives it with time to read it -- before it's my time and day to "check-in"
UNLESS, he has advised me ahead of time to not to call on my designated check-in day and time.
IF his plans change -- I'm to leave a voice mail, to check in when I call.
IF my call is URGENT -- I can call him anytime, 24/7 on his cell phone. And, he'll return my call as soon as he gets the cell phone message, if he doesn't answer on the ring.
IF I don't call -- I had better have a damn good reason for missing my time & day. Not just a "I screwed up" excuse.
I've been doing it this way for about 20 yrs now and it's one of the BEST things my sponsor has ever had me do -- outside of making a "Daily To-Do List".
It has helped me to learn structure, discipline, accountability, responsibility, promptness, efficiency, and priorities -- which previously I had a serious deficit in. It has helped me to learn and practice and make habit "First Things First!" And, it's helped me to keep away from being a lazy bum ALL the time.
Now, the hardest thing for me to do is: to not call at my check-in time. Like, if he is going to be on a different continent for a couple of weeks speaking, and told me ahead of time "don't call for the next two weeks."
It's been so good for me and my sobriety -- My Life -- that I won't even consider sponsoring someone that doesn't meet those two requirements, just like I did. (Passing on, what was passed on to me):
1. The Daily To-Do List. (And, yes -- there will be spot checks on it, until the person has developed it as a habit). And,
2. The strict adherence to the check-in day and time. Not 5 minutes before or after, not one day before or after -- and NO excuses.
I consider these two principles as VITAL to recovery.