Step Ten

Continued to take personal inventory
and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.

Leader's Share and Step Questions

Here are some questions that pertain to Step 10:

1. Steps 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9 spell out the procedure that is implied in Step 10. Besides being the ‘spring cleaning’ of recovery, these 6 earlier steps spell out in detail how we are to deal with the messiness of life on a day to day basis.

Do you work a regular Step 10? Why or why not?

For the following questions, you may either speak to how you have done it in the past, in the present, or how you think you will work this step in the future.

2. Do you have a specific format that you use for working this step?

3. When do you do your Step 10 work?

4. To whom do you admit your wrongdoings?

5. What do you do after you admit them?

6. What might the blessing be of doing a regular 10th step?

7. What might keep you from doing this step regularly?

8. Which do you think is more important: a thorough 4th/5th step or a consistent 10th step?

9. Why is it important to ‘promptly admit’ our wrongdoings?

10. With what attitude do you approach your 10th step work? Shame, guilt, or?

11. Where does gratitude fit into your 10th Step?

12. Why do you think gratitude might be important in a 10th Step?

13. What do you NOT include in your 10th step? Why?

14. How might sharing your 10th step be service?

Here are my answers to these questions:

I have from time to time worked and shared a regular 10 step with my sponsor. I get tired...head to bed before I write it...or send a short version from my phone. Sometimes I choose not to send my 10th step because I don’t want to be honest about my food. The ugly part of leading WTS is I tend to write questions I need to hear and answer! :)

When I do a formal 10th step, I usually use this format, which I adapted from a form that a sponsee used...which she, in turn, adapted from AABB’s directions:

Prayed last night

Prayed this morning


1. Followed my POE?




2. Sponsorship

Contact with my sponsor:

Contact with sponsees:

3. Meetings:

4. Phone/email

5. Writing

6. Literature

7. Anonymity


9.Action plan


Job & general:

12 steps:

Step 10 & 11 issues:

What gave me life today? What sucked out my energy? Is there something I would do differently next time? Do I owe amends? How did I take care of myself? How did I care for others? Where did I see my HP acting in my life?

Ten things I am grateful for.










Letter to God

Generally, I do this work before I head to bed...and I admit my wrongdoings to myself, to my HP and to my sponsor. After I admit them, I make a plan of action to make amends (if I haven’t already done so) or to specifically work Step 4, 5, 6, 7, to clarify what amends might be in order. And then I forgive myself, because beating myself up will only send me to my food. Often I will reach my right hand over my left shoulder, give myself a loving pat, and say, “Oh how very human of me.” And then I ask my HP to order my steps in the future.

A regular 10th step is full of blessings. I don’t carry stuff that is dangerous to me around any longer than I have to...resentments, fears, shame, anger, etc. I have to slow down long enough to do self reflection. I find out what I have done right as well as what I have done wrong. I have a chance to focus on gratitude. I have a chance to share my day with my sponsor and my HP. I have a chance to monitor how much work I am doing in program, and how effective that work is in keeping me in recovery. I am able to look for blessings in my day. I have an opportunity to close the account on the day, and to wake up the next day with a clean slate.

Given all that, it is difficult now to write with conviction what keeps me from doing this work! :) Sloth, fatigue, laziness, inattention, unwillingness to be honest. Gosh, it really only takes about 5 minutes. I have a quote on my computer that says, “I am worthy of willingness.” I am worthy of willingness around doing a daily 10th step too. Sometimes I think that I am pestering my sponsor by filling up her inbox, but really, when I get down to it, she is a big girl, and could tell me if she doesn’t want a daily 10th step, and I could find someone else to share it with, so this is just a bogus excuse.

Speaking as one who has done TWO - 25 page step 4s.... :) I think that a regular step 10 is really more important, because if I have missed something in my Step 4, my HP has a way of bringing it to light in my Step 10 work. Neither step is a ‘once and for all’ step, but Step 10 allows me to address specific issues as they come up, rather than letting them fester. It is, in my experience, easier to make amends right away, than to stew over them for months or years and then face the music. And even if it is an old issue, I have fewer to deal with at a time in my Step 10, and perhaps that is less daunting and I might be more willing.

I think it is important to ‘promptly admit’ our wrongdoings because my ‘itty bitty committee’ likes nothing more than to take a minor offense and grow it into a gargantuan TRANSGRESSION...and the more time I leave it in their ugly little hands, the more chance they have to grow it into something MUCH MORE UGLY that it was in the beginning. Like a stain on my clothes, the sooner I treat it, and get it in the wash, the less chance it has to be a permanent problem.

I once heard a woman say she gave up guilt for Lent....THIRTY YEARS ago—and has never chosen to take it back. I love that woman! Since I have chosen to love my humanity, that means I accept that I am going to mess up from time to time. My intent is to approach my Step 10 with humility and gratitude for a chance to let go of things that could keep me trapped, and to deal with mistakes I made so as to minimize the negative effect on myself and on others.

There is absolutely no way I would have ever been willing to do a 10th Step without the blessings of working the steps, for before program, I was completely mired down in shame and guilt. Therefore, gratitude HAS to be a major component in my 10th Step. The gift of honesty that comes with this program—and the consequences of living in reality and acceptance—these things are priceless.

I do NOT include shame and guilt in my 10th step, for these imposters rob me of the responsibility of action....they masquerade as ‘moral responses’ but they are really just straightjackets that keep me from doing the next right thing. A therapist once said to an offender, “If you feel bad enough, long don’t have to take any action to change your behavior. William James says, “If you believe that feeling bad or worrying long enough will change a past or future event, then you are residing on another planet with a different reality system.”

I know that when my sponsees share a daily 10th step with me, my own recovery is supported. Often I can see myself in their responses...sometimes their successes remind me of mine...sometimes their struggles help me to be honest about mine. Their 10th step in my inbox can encourage (or shame! :) ) me into doing mine. And their gratitudes remind me to focus on mine.

Hugs, Lainey

Step One
Step Two
Step Three
Step Four
Step Five
Step Six
Step Seven
Step Eight
Step Nine
Step Ten

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