The Ninth Step
Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
How do I make amends to myself?
As with any addiction we have many behaviors that are self destructive and extremely abusive to ourselves, that is the nature of addiction. Quite a few years ago I read a book about "the child within" and the book asked the reader "What kind of parent are you to your inner child, a loving or critical one?"
Of course I immediately knew the answer... critical of course! That is what I grew up with and that was the running voice (the parent) in my head. If I was upset about something, "my parent" would say "What's you problem? Snap out of it". If I was tired or moving slow, my "parent" would say "Let's get moving, come on and pick up the pace".... it goes on and on, you get the picture.
So when it came to my ninth step - in making amends to myself, I wrote a list in the eighth step of all the abusive things I did to myself and I looked at as if it was a parent treating a small child that way. In the ninth step I read each item out load and apologizing for each one by one, like I was speaking to a child. It was extremely emotional and very healing. It was a big eye opener how traumatic this emotional and physical abuse would be to ANYONE let alone a child. And, I would NEVER put up with that treatment from anyone else in my life and here I was doing it to myself. I have shared this with many people over the years and it seems to be a good tool for many. I hope it helps some of you! Below is the list I came up with - my continuing amends to myself is to love and accept myself and be my own best friend :)
- I am sorry for expecting you to be perfect.
- I am sorry for making you believe you are not worthwhile unless
you are constantly productive.
- I am sorry I don't let you play.
- I am sorry I don't let you see your friends.
- I am sorry I don't feed you enough.
- I am sorry I don't let you rest enough.
- I am sorry I make you feel that nothing you do is ever good enough.
- I am sorry I make you feel in a state of fear all the time.
- I am sorry I am always so critical.
- I am sorry I don't praise you enough.
- I am sorry I don't accept you for who you are and expect you to
constantly please everyone else.
- I am sorry I don't give you any hugs or love you enough.
The gifts of serenity and a more balanced and fulfilling life are ours as we work the Steps and allow the Steps to work us.
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