12 Steps: Discussions related to the 12 Steps and using them as a treatment to recover from alcohol and drug addiction.
Step 10: Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
I have been thinking about this step a lot lately, and just how important it is in my life today as a member of AA and society as a whole. I didn't see it on the forum under the 12 steps, so I thought I would ask all of you out there who trudge the Road of Happy Destiny, how do you do step 10 and do you do step 10 every day?
I have been reading page 83-88 three time a day for the last few days, and I think I may just now get the point of of it in my life.
Yesterday, I was blessed to be one of 4 who took a meeting to a gentleman who has 20+ years in the program, and he is dying of lung cancer, I'm not a Dr. but I would say he wont be with us much longer.
He and his wife shared a little about dying, but not in the way I had expected, they both had a shine in their eyes as they did. His wife said he will be home before I will but I know he will be waiting for me when I get there, I was overwhelmed by the love and peace she had. That was such a humbling day for me, two people who I thought would have been crying and hurting, were two of the most peaceful people I have ever met. When I got home I was reading step 10 and 11 and I thought, that's why, If I do step 10 everyday of my life, I will have peace, I will stop blaming anyone, I will learn to trust in my God completely, I will learn to live without fear, I will learn, that to do any of this ,I have to help someone else and learn love and tolerance for all. Man how could you not be at peace with that in your life.
I have always loved the 9Th step promises, but it says we will be amazed before we are half way through (if we are painstaking) with step 9. I have been caught up on those promises since the day I walked into a meeting. I was thinking they would happen by osmosis I guess, I also think I overlooked the part about "they will always materialize if we work for them.'
In my mind step 10 is where I learned HOW to work for them.
I was driving to pick up my mom last night from a trip, and I was running late so I was speeding, and I was pulled over (no warrants & I was legal
) and the policeman gave me a ticket, then ask me to step out of the car, ask if I had been drinking, and I said 'not in 2 months' he ask if he could search the car and I said sure and ask him if he wanted me to open the trunk. So they searched the car and said "you have a long record, did you know that?' I said "yes, I do that is why I haven't had a drink in two months" So he handed me my ticket and I said I was sorry that I had caused them any trouble
, and I meant it. So I called my mom and told her I was going to be even more late, and she was pissed off bad, not at me at the police, for treating me that way, and I told her I was the one speeding, I was the one who had the DWI's on my record and everything else that may have shown up. Why was she mad at them for doing there job, if I was someone else, they may have got a drunk driver off the road and save a life or two. AND I MEANT IT, me, I used to hate cops, and in a calm way I took responsibility for what I had done now and in the past, without anger at them or myself. That is in the 9Th step promises, but I had to be applying step 10 in order for it to happen. I can't say I will handle it that way every time something bad comes up, but I am learning, "what we really have is a daily reprieve contingent of the maintenance of our spiritual condition."
These step continue to amaze me, and I continue to be amazed when I see them and God working through me. What a GREAT program.
Thanks for letting me share.
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Great topic! Thank you for sharing your experience with Step 10!!!
For me, Step 10 has become one of the most powerful of the 12 Steps, that continually moves me and my life forward -- towards continued sober living, continued emotional balance, and continued good living -- under all situations, circumstances and conditions!
Don't feel alone on your speeding ticket!
At 6:00 am, yesterday morning I started taking a guy through the Steps. By 11:00 am, he was headed home to do Steps 6 & 7, -- and he got called into work immediately after doing Step 7 -- we were to meet at 5:00 pm to take Steps 8 through 12, and he, too, got heavy on the gas petal, and got a ticket for speeding, not having the right tags on his truck, and not having his insurance card with him! (Gonna be some big fines!)
I bring that up for one reason: So often, A.A.'s start thinking that "now that I've had a spiritual experience -- all will be great!" And, they back off doing the things that brought about the spiritual experiences and made things great! Then -- they start having troubles again and get consummed by their problems, forgetting that the whole deal was to give us tools to deal with our problems.
Just because we get sober and take the Steps and everything is going great -- it doesn't mean that we won't have problems.
By practicing Steps 10 through 12 "DAILY" as you've mentioned -- we will eventually have less problems to deal with -- and when we are faced with a problem, we CAN HAVE the serenity to match any calamity that comes our way -- as we solve the problem in an effective, efficient and healthy way. The choice is ours.
Below are some links to the threads on Step 10, in both the 12 Steps Forum and the Recovery Forum. And, just because we have some there -- doesn't mean that we can't use more! So, I'm glad you started another one on Step 10!!!!
12 Steps Forum
Taken the 12 Steps? It was great. Now disturbed again?
Practicing Step Ten â€“ For Practical Purposes!
Step 10 Promises
More benefits from A.A.â€™s Daily Inventories
Feeling a little disturbed?
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Funny, I've been thinking a lot about the 10th step lately, too, and how it's impossible to "unring a bell" -- I'll explain that, but first...
To me, the 9th step promises refer to being painstaking in working the steps -- that wonderful sense of relief that comes after doing a 5th step, at least for me, was amazing and it happened before I was halfway through the steps.
How do I do my 10th step on a daily basis? Well, I don't do anything formal -- my conversations with my HP are usually pretty casual (I learned this approach by reading "A New Pair of Glasses" by Chuck C.). Generally, I just kind of review the day -- did I get angry? did I say something in haste that may have hurt someone? what were my motives in what I did or said? Since anger comes from fear, what was I afraid of when I got angry? Then, I ask for guidance to help me correct whatever I did wrong.
Sometimes, I'll write about whatever is bothering me, either in a journal (sort of a letter to my HP), or even on a forum like this one.
As far as "unringing a bell" -- there are times I wish I hadn't said something, or that I had a "delete" button for something I did. Life would be so much easier that way! The 10th step makes me focus on those instances and make amends as necessary. The other person may have forgotten what I said or did, but if I remember it and it bothers me, I have to try to set the situation right.
And for me, that's what the 10th step is all about.
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Thanks for telling us how you do it Carol. I hope more people share, I know I get a lot of new ideas from people like you and others who share, I hope I dont ever stop wanting to learn new ways, and new tools, and more and more about our BB. So thanks to you and others who pass it on.
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Lately Step 10 has been all about my thinking. I don't know how many times i've had to ask someone ' did he say what i thought he said?' And thankfully the answer is always 'no!' It's just my tired head looking to turn something trivial into yet another self defeating drama!
It all goes back to that HALT ' dont get Hungry, Angry ,Lonely or Tired.' I never get to meet one of these four horsemen on there own. When i'm hungry i get edgy and sometimes angry. Its then i can lose it with someone for something trivial. Then i get lonely and tired of living with the consequences so i have to go back and make an amend.
Guess that's what you call managing your life, eating before you get hungry and resting before your flat out tired.
I'm so glad someone thought of all this stuff before i came along, otherwise i'd still be that defiant lost little boy whistling in the dark and could stay that way for the rest of my life.
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I do steps 3,10,11 every day and hopefully 12. I do step 11 in the morning. As part of it I do 3. Then I do step 10 for the day before. It is easier for me to think about the day before when I am fresh in the morning and after my private time with my Higher Power. I keep a little notebook and in it I will write down thoughts about step 10. Sometimes I note that I missed making an amends the day before when something happened. Sometimes I note something I should talk to my sponsor about. Sometimes I review the remarks since I last went to reconciliation and decide it is time. I use both my sponsor and my priest to make sure I am staying right with my Higher Power and that my path to Him is clear of rocks.
I have been following the program for just over 8 months. I started doing it like this at about 3 months. It helps me to have it written down so I can see if I really am making progress in becoming the kinder , gentler being that I believe I am supposed to be. It is too easy for me to rest on my laurels if I am not rigorous bout step 10. I never want to need to do a step 4 again and the way I can make that a reality is by doing the rerun loop of 3.10,11,12 repeat. I pray I will be doing this in ten years as vigorously as I am now.
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The longer i'm sober Step 10 has come in handy for taking stock of what’s on the agenda tomorrow as much as what went on today. Now that I’m no longer a drop out and back in the human race living a full life there is always something on the horizon that needs approached with caution. Be it office politics at work, family politics with a forthcoming social event or neighbourhood politics discussing the kids across the street who are obviously selling drugs when their mums away at her boyfriends. Also being part of an AA group and doing service at intergroup it could even be AA politics.
Unlike before today I like to be prepared so I don’t just jump in and rock the boat without some justification. The old me would rock the boat just for the hell of it. They say everyone has a right to an opinion but if you didn’t want yours I would gladly take it from you and use it to your disadvantage. Guess I just wanted to get noticed no matter what. Today that tells me other peoples opinions of me where far more important than my own, if I didn’t like myself I could always get over it by making other people like me, how sick is that?
Now it all boils down to which of the animals inside me I’m feeding on any given day. Is it the one who wants to take over leadership of the pack either by direct conquest or undermining the present leader? Or is it the playful animal that wants his tummy rubbed for fetching the stick no one else could find? Or is it the animal that’s willing to do whatever’s required to take care of their offspring? And I can only do that if I take care of myself. Some may question the use of animals in this analogy but without a God in my life that’s all I would be. A vicious, snarling wounded animal that would have no hesitation in biting the hand that feeds me.
We’re told that Step 10 is a personal inventory whereas Step 4 is a moral one. The personal inventory means that i take stock of the whole person. Now that God has given me my life back what am I doing with it, am i being all I can be, is my life as good as my mind? Or am I still trying to scrape by doing the bare minimum I need to do just to survive? In my early days carrying a head full of big heavy rocks that was all the strength I could muster, thankfully today it’s not like that. AA has taught me that real poverty is having nothing to give.
For me another important question is what have I done today for AA? Am I in the deep end of the fellowship or still paddling around in the shallow end? Personally I’m not a fan the shallow end, it may be safe and risk free but its no life. Knowing what I know today I’d much rather take my chances in the deep end. Even though I’ve been swamped a few times with Gods help I know I won’t go under for good, its just a blip. And who knows I may even find a pearl when I’m down there!
And when all else fails there is always the ‘Emergency Step 10!’ For me the alarm bell goes every time I say the word ‘should.’ He should do that, they should do this or I should be…? When ever I hear myself say that word my body goes on amber alert for my history tells me when I start thinking I know what everyone else ‘should’ be doing I’m on rocky ground and its time to get off!
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