Step 8 requires more action. From completing a thorough 4th step, we find our 8th step is mostly laid out for us. In our 4th Step, we take an open and honest look at ourselves, and we now understand where we were wrong in our past. We review the list we have from our 4th step and take time to thoroughly consider if there are any others we harmed who should have a place on that list. Once we have a full list in place, we set out to clear the wreckage we created throughout our active addiction career.
As we prepare to take on the task of making amends, many of us find ourselves wondering how we can face those we have wronged, or worse yet, those who wronged us. It is hard to fathom how we can ask someone whose indiscretions may be greater than our own to forgive us for our wrongdoings. We cannot let ourselves slip into the resentments of the wrongs done to us, but rather our lives depend on us focusing solely on the wrongs we have done.
In addition, we must take pause and think about the task we are preparing to embark upon. The task necessary to further maintain our sobriety is one of forgiveness. This task is imperative if we hope to achieve the spiritual awakening talked about in the 12th step. Would it not suit us well to practice forgiveness to those who have done us harm, especially if we are about to ask our wrongs be forgiven? This includes forgiveness for the most important person of all – OURSELVES!
If we fail to forgive ourselves for the wreckage we caused, how can we ask another to be willing to forgive us? Now we have a list comprised of those we need to seek out. We understand the upcoming task will not be an easy one, but one necessary for our recovery. We are ready to move forward. We should do so free of judgment, and be willing to practice forgiveness for ourselves and others. If we feel we can enter into Step 8 taking all of this into consideration, we find ourselves ready to begin our 9th step.