Working the Steps - Step 8 | The Recovery Place

Working the Steps – Step 8

November 8th, 2013 12 Steps, Helpful Articles

Step 8 of the 12 Steps addiction recovery programIn active addiction we make mistakes – many of which can cause great harm to the people around us. From “borrowing” or stealing money, to causing physical and emotional harm, we can ultimately lose the relationships we’ll need to support us throughout recovery.

Step Eight is the first step towards making amends with our family and friends through a process of looking back on what we have done, vigorously attempting to repair any damage caused, and making the promise to live differently moving forward.

Step Eight

Made a list of all persons we had harmed and became willing to make amends to them all.

Step Eight is the first portion of making a vigorous attempt at repairing the damage we have done in our active addiction.

The first part of Step Eight is compiling a list of people we feel we have harmed in our active addiction. Going back and reviewing our Step Four inventory will help us move forward in this process as it may include the individuals we have hurt in our destructive path.

After we have listed the individuals we need to make amends with, we should also take not of the severity of the harm caused and how each person reacted to the situation. These details will help as we continue to work Step Eight.

Working Step Eight

There are two portions to Step Eight. First we list all of the persons we may have harmed in our active addiction. Then we need to become willing to make amends to them, which is the more important part to reach.

Below you will find a series of questions, that when answered honestly and completely will help you fully work Step Eight:

  • How have you hurt yourself in your active addiction?
  • List the important relationships you damaged and/or destroyed because of your addictive behaviors:
  • How much time and energy have you lost while addicted?
  • Do you think you could have accomplished more or become something else had you not become addicted?
  • Make a list of everyone you could have possibly harmed by your addictive behaviors. List what effect you had on them personally and how it affected your relationship with each person:
  • Take the list of every individual you have harmed and make a list of possible amends to each person:
  • What consequences do you fear in making amends? What are the worst and best things that could happen?
  • Do you feel angry or resentful towards any people on your amends list? Try writing a letter of anger to them, but don’t give it to them. This is a good exercise to relieve the anger and move forward in your new sober way of living.

Step Eight is only the first step in this process of taking a deeper look at our interpersonal relations and how they were affected by addiction. In Step Nine we will take what we have learned and prepared in Step Eight and start to actively make amends.

For more information on working the steps refer back to our blog series, or call to find a drug rehab program that will work the steps with you. Reaching Step Eight has taken a lot of hard work and dedication. Congratulations on your work towards recovery and keep it up!

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