Written By Mitch Flugge
“Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to male amends to them all.”
Step four could be seen as your personal housecleaning, Step Eight is more of a social application of the shame reduction that was begun in Step Four, when you realized that you have hurt others as well as yourself because of alcoholic drinking. Step 8 is mostly about identifying the damage you have done to others and listing those names. It doesn’t matter if the harm you caused was from selfishness, carelessness, anger, arrogance, dishonesty or any other character defect, it doesn’t even matter if you didn’t intend to cause harm. The names on your list could be people you bullied, cheated on or treated coldly. Whether they are living or dead or will want to hear from you or not, it doesn’t matter. You are
There will be fear and there are going to be people who come to mind who also caused you harm. A lot of people delay in starting to work on Step 8 because they aren’t willing to make amends to these people because they resent them too much. Even if you are so unwilling that you don’t even want to pray for willingness because you can’t imagine having any compassion for certain people, put their names on the list anyway. The truth is that forgiving someone who
harmed us may mean swallowing our pride. But unfortunately not forgiving that person costs us our freedom. So instead of getting caught up in those tricky old feelings, get out your pen and paper and put those names on a list. After allowing a higher power into your life in the previous steps. It will create strength and courage to complete Step 8. Gain your freedom!