Making Your Moral Inventory During Inpatient Care

The fourth step of AA asks members to make a searching and fearless moral inventory of their lives. Doing so can be an extremely difficult task, but during inpatient care is one of the best times to do it. Call 800-839-1686 to find safe, reliable rehab centers that also utilize the 12-step method in their treatment programs.

Consult Your Counselor

One of the best ways to make your moral inventory and to do so effectively and safely is to consult your counselor along the way. After all, you are in a facility where you are able to receive advice and help from professional caregivers, and reaching out to them is one of the best things you can do for your safe recovery.

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, your counselor will likely encourage you to work on your abilities of acceptance and surrender in order to be successful during this step.

Moral Inventory

Writing down your moral inventory will ensure that you don’t forget anything.

  • Acceptance and surrender are two of the most important ideas taught in 12-step facilitation therapy.
  • As an addict, you must accept that you no longer have any control over your substance abuse and that this issue has likely caused you to do and say things you wish you hadn’t.
  • Therefore, it is important to surrender to this fact by promising to be honest about your past and to banish denial from your future behavior.

Write It Down

It is absolutely necessary to write your moral inventory down. If you don’t, you will be likely to forget many things and it also may not seem as real to you as it will when you see it written on the page. Try to find a place in the facility where you feel comfortable and where you will be able to spend some time on reflection.

  • Try not to think too much about what you are writing at first. Merely write down certain feelings, events, or times that stand out to you as you look over your past.
  • It is okay if certain feelings, people, etc. show up more on your list than others.
  • Once you have written these things down, talk to your counselor or attempt to make sense of them by writing about each one in turn.
    • What do you feel when you think back on this event?
    • How do you wish it had turned out?
    • What was motivating you when you acted the way you did?
    • Would you have acted that way if you weren’t struggling with substance abuse?

Fearless ≠ Without Fear

When used in this sense, the program does not mean you should make your inventory completely without fear but without letting your fear control you. Of course going through all these past thoughts, feelings, and events will be uncomfortable, and admitting to certain things can be scary.

Instead of thinking this, though, remember that you are no longer going to deny the truth, and instead, you have made a promise to pursue it even in the face of fear. As a result, you will be able to put past issues behind you (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration).

Why Admitting Your Wrongs to Another Person is Important in AA

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