Magic Shares on Becoming Willing in Step 8

'My List Grew By Leaps and Bounds'

Writing a List
Step 8 Is More Than Making a List. © Getty Images

Step 8 is simply a "list" of people we have harmed. I was told that if I had done my 4th step inventory, that much of this list had been covered.

The second part of the 8th step is to become "willing" to make the amends necessary. I didn't actually have to "do" anything in the way of amends just yet. This perspective relieved a little of the fear I had regarding making the list. I was advised to ask my higher power to guide me through this step as I had all the others.

Looking at My Behavior

My sponsor asked me to look at my behavior whether drinking or not. Was I kind, tolerant and considerate of others, or was I mean spirited, impatient and selfish? What were my motives when dealing with family members, friends, co-workers etc. Was I hell-bent in getting only what I wanted and not concerned with what was "right?" Oh, and lets not forget the self pity that I poured out on those from whom I was sure to extract sympathy. (sheesh, was I good at this one!)

Upon looking at the 8th step in this light, the list grew by leaps and bounds. I now not only had a list of those whom I had resentments, but a list that included those I may have given resentments and caused harm. Promises made but not kept. Telling that "homeless" (surely lazy, drug addicted alkie) to "get a job!" There is no way of knowing exactly how many people I hurt through my insensitivity.

Humbling, But Not Impossible

Some of these amends would be direct.

Humbling but not impossible. Others through changing my attitude and behavior by not perpetrating the old sick self-serving behavior on friends, family or strangers.

If I work this step to the best of my ability, the promise of living a life free of isolation from my fellow man and God will come to be.

My sobriety is "the" priority! I must be willing to go to any length to get it. So far it's working, so I think I'll just keep coming back!

-- Magic

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