“This thought brings us to Step Ten, which suggests we continue to take personal inventory and continue to set right any new mistakes as we go along. We vigorously commenced this way of living as we cleaned up the past. We have entered the world of the Spirit. Our next function is to grow in understanding and effectiveness. This is not an overnight matter. It should continue for our lifetime. Continue to watch for selfishness, dishonesty, resentment, and fear. When these crop up, we ask God at once to remove them. We discuss them with someone immediately and make amends quickly if we have harmed anyone. Then we resolutely turn our thoughts to someone we can help. Love and tolerance of others is our code.” – A.A. Big Book pg. 84
“Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.” (A.A. Big Book pg. 59)
Life in recovery is not an event. It is an ongoing journey to employ that which is good and useful in myself and continuing to watch for those things in my life that separate me from being of maximum service to God and others. This is why Step Ten is vital in continued sobriety. The work on self never ends. Recovery is not a destination. The book of Alcoholics Anonymous on page 85 warns the alcoholic that; “It is easy to let up on the spiritual program of action and rest on our laurels”. It continues; “We are heading for trouble if we do, for alcohol is a subtle foe. We are not cured of alcoholism. What we really have is a daily reprieve contingent on the maintenance of our spiritual condition. Every day is a day when we must carry the vision of God’s will into all of our activities – Thy will (not mine) be done.”
When I fail to carry through on continued daily inventory I am setting myself up for problems. Yes, this is another must of the AA program.
P.S. Step Ten – Described on pages 84 – 85
(The directions for taking Step 10 are on page 84, para. 2, lines 1-14)