Taking the Moral Inventory; It’s Okay – You Are Not Alone

Mature woman consoling her young daughter in the living room.

Contributor: Crystal Karges, MS, RDN, IBCLC, Special Projects Coordinator at Eating Disorder Hope/Addiction Hope

If you have been in recovery from addiction, you can likely relate to the roller coaster of emotions you are constantly experiencing. Where a substance once served the place of numbing various emotions, a new surge of feelings may seem to spring up in the absence of the drug or alcohol addiction.

Learning how to process and deal with these emotions in a healthy way and without depending on the crutch of an addiction is necessary to healing and recovery.

Processing Emotional and Psychological Issues

One completing the acute phase of addiction recovery, an individual can begin to process some of the deeper emotional and psychological issues that may be related to the addiction. This is often completed through a 12-step program, which are guiding principles that are spiritual by nature, and which promote fellowship with others and ongoing abstinence.

Step 4 of this process involves creating a “fearless and moral inventory of ourselves.” This involves having an honest reflection of your life and life events, taking responsibility for any poor choices or behaviors and admitting faults and weaknesses.

Emotions Can Be Triggered

Taking a moral inventory in your sobriety can trigger a variety of emotions, including shame, fear, and embarrassment. It can be difficult and painful to look back on a time in your life when so many poor choices were made.

Human hands showing unityAs hard as this step can be, it is a crucial first step towards taking responsibility in your life once more and regaining your life back from your addiction – step by step.

Feeling Overwhelmed? That’s Okay

Perhaps you also feel overwhelmed about your own mistakes and mishaps while under the influence of an addiction. It is important to know that you are not alone in your struggle and that the fact that you developed an addiction is not something that can be blamed on anybody.

Addictions are mental health illnesses that countless of individuals struggle with. Your road to recovery is unique to yourself but it is also a journey that many other people are familiar with. As others have found success before you, so too shall you find healing and freedom from addiction.

Community Discussion – Share your thoughts here!

What aspects about taking a moral inventory can be overwhelming? Why do you think this is a crucial part of recovery and treatment?

Last Updated & Reviewed By: Jacquelyn Ekern, MS, LPC on June 26th, 2015
Published on AddictionHope.com