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    What is a “moral inventory,” and how do I make one? The Alcoholics Anonymous Big Blue Book (AABBB) describes a sort of detailed “grudge list,” and I’ve also heard about a two-column list of good and bad character traits. I need some specific instructions.



    An inventory is about counting everything.

    So write it as honestly as you can, and yes, include the good stuff too. It’s hard to admit, but there is good stuff. (we not as bad or as good as we think….)

    Anyway, if it’s your first one, the “bad” side will likely be alot longer than the “good” side. But next time you do one, it will even out a bit.

    Got a sponsor you can do this with?



    The purpose of a searching and fearless moral inventory is to sort through the confusion and the contradiction of our lives so that we can find out who we really are. We are starting a new way of life and need to be rid of the burdens and traps which have controlled us and prevented our growth.

    As we approach this step, most of us are afraid that there is a monster inside us that, if released, will destroy us. This fear can cause us to put off our inventory or may even prevent us from taking this crucial step at all. We have found that fear is lack of faith, and we have found a loving, personal God to whom we can turn. We no longer need to be afraid.

    … Step Four will help us toward our recovery more than we imagine. Most of us find that we were neither as terrible, nor as wonderful, as we supposed. We are surprised to find that we have good points in our inventory. Anyone who has some time in the Program and has worked this step will tell you that the Fourth Step was a turning point in their life. Some of us make the mistake of approaching the Fourth Step as if it were a confession of how horrible we are-what a bad person we have been. In this new way of life, a binge of emotional sorrow can be dangerous. This is not the purpose of the Fourth Step. We are trying to free ourselves of living in old, useless patterns. We take the Fourth Step to gain the necessary strength and insight which enables us to grow. We may approach the Fourth Step in a number of ways.

    It is advisable that before we start, we go over the first three steps with a sponsor.

    – Narcotics Anonymous Basic Text, Chapter 4/Step 4

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