“Make a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.”
Man I dreaded going through this process and really thought it would be grueling and humiliating and would rip my heart out, chop it into tiny pieces, do the Mexican Hat Dance on the pieces with hobnailed boots, and then torch whatever is left.
I did not want to look at myself and the following categories at the same time: Honesty, Integrity, Dependability, Sexuality, Relationships, etc. I was intimidated by Intimacy. I recoiled at Resentments and felt eviscerated by my Values. And that was all before I started the process of going through Step 4.
Not going to share truckloads of issues, but will share a couple of key points I learned.
Point 1: This step is not only about areas that need improvement. It is about those, but it is also a great time to give yourself credit for the the good things you do well, too. There ya go. Something to feel good about.
Point 2: Doing an inventory is a really good idea, so you can see areas to work on and then work on them. Duh! Unless you are really, really happy with where you are and who you are in your life, which I was absofreakinlutely not happy with! Hence the effort to De-barnacle myself of those things that no longer serve me.
Point 3: I confess here, that I hit a brick wall when I started working on my Resentments, so I’ll share a bit on that. I resented about everything and almost everyone. I resented everyone but a handful of friends and all my kids. Everyone else and my childhood church and places I had worked for and people I had worked for and and and… Going through this inventory process helped me let them go. Bam! Just like that. No long, drawn out pitiful exercise in suffering, wallowing in self misery… just gone. And that folks, is very handy, let me tell ya. Because now, I recognize Resentments when they start to rear their hideous little heads and I can nip them in the bud fairly quickly now. In fact, now that I think about it, I bet the 16 pounds I’ve dropped in 6 months, may have been all my Resentments. Huh… imagine that…
Point 4: Oh yah. I’m a good person. My default is cheerful, sweet and loving. You should know that, in case you would like a happy, nice and caring person in your life. That’s me. And I am drawing people like me into my life and letting those who aren’t go, with love and caring detachment. And that is quite healing and refreshingly so.
Highly recommend doing a lovely moral inventory on yourself, if you are so inclined. I used the Blueprints for Progress workbook and have actually gone through it all the way twice and refer to it when I need a bit of help in an area. Self Worth seems to be a bit recurring! Isn’t that delightful!
Today, I have been in recovery in Al Anon for over 10 months now. It has been 10 months of healing and I am grateful. I no longer see Step 4 as something fearful, but as a kind and helpful friend.