Eliminating Limiting Beliefs in the Fellowship of Alcoholics Anonymous and other 12 Step groups

- 36 Tips
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12 Steps

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10th Step - Keeping Ourselves Honest

Step10: Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.

Step 10 is the first of the so-called maintenance steps. Once we've worked Steps 1 through 9, our recovery should be on firm footing and we can truly begin getting on with life free of our addiction and truly empowered.

But lasting and empowering recovery requires ongoing growth, and the 10th Step is one of the best ways to ensure we continue to develop.

Create a habit of self-honesty

As addicts we have a long history of dishonesty with ourselves; as people we will make mistakes. Step 10 gives us a framework for the continuing, but not obsessive, self-evaluation that leads to serenity and balance or gives us a way to get back to it when things go wrong.

Tenth Step inventory can be done almost any way you want to do it. Some people actually sit down and write a bit every evening. I've done this from time-to-time; it's great but hard for me to sustain. I find it works better for me first thing in the morning along with organizing my day. But there are times when I don't do that either.

I have discovered I can keep track by noticing my mood and what I'm actually doing some call this maintaining a witness within. When I realize I'm angry or sad or whatever, I mentally check to see what's going on. Sometimes it's a simple as needing a break other times I'll realize I've allowed some resentment to build.

What's worked and what hasn't

One of the best approaches to this I've found is to look at what's worked, or is working and what hasn't worked, or isn't working. This way I avoid falling into self-pity and self-degradation hardly powerful positions!

It's important to note that, in the Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, it says this inventory is not to be totally negative that is, if we use the 10 Step to it's fullest, we also keep track of what we do well as the mistakes we make. If, for example, I find I'm feeling like I'm not getting everything done, I'll pause long enough to notice what I am getting done. Often I realize the problem is I've set myself up to do too much! When this is true, I look at what I can skip, or postpone or just give myself credit.

The point here is we are not to wallow in what we do wrong, but take an honest and total look at ourselves and a complete look means we see what's good about ourselves as well as those things we recognize need changing.


Of course a willingness to make an instant apology when we need to helps as well. I don't mean apologizing for every little thing, but the true taking responsibility that can make such a positive difference and create solutions as well.

At first glance, the 10th Step can seem like a never-ending chore; properly used, it's empowering and a great tool for mental, spiritual and physical growth.

Love, peace and abundance,

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