Step 10: Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it
It is easy to let up on the spiritual program of action and rest on our laurels. We are headed for trouble if we do, for alcohol is a subtle foe. We are not cured of alcoholism. What we really have is a daily reprieve contingent on the maintenance of our spiritual condition. Every day is a day when we must carry the vision of God’s will into all of our activities. “How can I best serve Thee – Thy will (not mine) be done.” These are thoughts which must go with us constantly. We can exercise our will power along this line all we wish. It is the proper use of the will.
Asking ourselves these question each night, writing about it, discussing things with our sponsor to get a different perspective…ect…we have daily tools to grow that have been laid at our feet…
When we retire at night, we constructively review our day.
Were we resentful, selfish, dishonest or afraid?
Do we owe an apology?
Have we kept something to ourselves which should be discussed with another person at once?
Were we kind and loving toward all?
What could we have done better?
Were we thinking of ourselves most of the time?
Or were we thinking of what we could do for others, of what we could pack into the stream of life?
“But we must be careful not to drift into worry, remorse or morbid reflection, for that would diminish our usefulness to others. After making our review we ask God’s forgiveness and inquire what corrective measures should be taken.”
On awakening let us think about the twenty-four hours ahead.
We consider our plans for the day.
Before we begin, we ask God to direct our thinking, especially asking that it be divorced from self-pity, dishonest or self-seeking motives.
“Under these conditions we can employ our mental faculties with assurance, for after all God gave us brains to use. Our thought-life will be placed on a much higher plane when our thinking is cleared of wrong motives.”
“In thinking about our day we may face indecision. We may not be able to determine which course to take. Here we ask God for inspiration, an intuitive thought or a decision. We relax and take it easy. We don’t struggle. We are often surprised how the right answers come after we have tried this for a while.”
“We usually conclude the period of meditation with a prayer that we be shown all through the day what our next step is to be, that we be given whatever we need to take care of such problems.”
We ask especially for freedom from self-will, and are careful to make no request for ourselves only.
We may ask for ourselves, however, if others will be helped.
We are careful never to pray for our own selfish ends.
“Many of us have wasted a lot of time doing that and it doesn’t work. You can easily see why.”
As we go through the day we pause, when agitated or doubtful, and ask for the right thought or action.
We constantly remind ourselves we are no longer running the show, humbly saying to ourselves many times each day “Thy will be done.”
We are then in much less danger of excitement, fear, anger, worry, self-pity, or foolish decisions. We become much more efficient. We do not tire so easily, for we are not burning up energy foolishly as we did when we were trying to arrange life to suit ourselves.
It works – it really does.
“We alcoholics are undisciplined. So we let God discipline us in the simple way we have just outlined.”
My personal Step 10 consists of a daily written inventory. I of course spot check throughout the day, but I find it’s harder to lie to myself when I have the truth written out in front of me in black and white. My mind will justify and rationalize everything in my favor. It likes to tell me that I am a victim and blameless. The Spirit knows otherwise. I spent years and years in my head justifying my reactions, decisions and behaviors, pretty much always based in a victim mentality. I blamed others (still have to watch that everyday) instead of admitting that I participated in my own self destruction.
Now, because of God and the Steps of AA, my brain is being continually being rewired to match my soul-where before my mind running the show. Since it doesn’t come automatically to admit my faults, I find this daily 10th Step keeps my accounts with God and others short, so that my next 4th Step won’t be as dramatic.
Simply by asking myself honestly the questions mentioned above, keeps me in check. It’s hard for me to be honest if I am so full of anger, self pity, resentment or blame, so I pray for the willingness to be honest and for God to revel to me the truth in all things. I also ask for the courage to face myself and take responsibility for my thoughts and actions. I would have NEVER known how to do this if not for AA and spiritually fit people God put in my life.
Please share on your experience with Step 10, your personal daily process or whatever experience, strength and hope your sober walk can bless us with!