Assessing One’s Own Mistakes in Recovery


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When in recovery from an alcohol addiction, part of the 12 step process, is to assess one’s own mistakes. This process takes quite a bit of time and should be done over and over again. It isn’t a one time thing and then it’s done. In fact, you can and should keep assessing your own mistakes years into your recovery. When you make mistakes and make amends to yourself and others, you have a much better chance of staying sober and in recovery. So, what does assessing your own mistakes consist of?


In Chapter 5 of the Big Book, it states, “…we resolutely looked for our own mistakes. Where we had been selfish..” Many people don’t realize the power that selfish thoughts and actions have on one’s life. It isn’t just the effect it has on you and your life, but the life of others as well. When you are selfish, you aren’t thinking of the other person. This can create a lot of tension in your life and even cause your addictive cycle to spiral out of control again. When you are in recovery, making amends, where you may have been selfish is helpful.


Chapter 5 of the Big Book also states dishonesty as one of the mistakes. When you are working on making amends, think about where you have been dishonest, with yourself and with others. Dishonesty can break a relationship apart. Even when you are dishonest with yourself, it can lead to distrust of your own choices and thinking. During your recovery process, especially while you are in alcohol rehab treatment, you can work on being more honest with yourself and others.


Have you been self-seeking? Chapter 5 of the Big Book states this as one of the mistakes you may have made as well. What is self-seeking behavior? Basically, it defines behavior where you are trying to gain control or when you manipulate situations or people. Many alcoholics have done this. If you have now is the time to make amends. When you are in recovery, you can work on not having any more self-seeking behaviors.


Frightened is also mentioned in Chapter 5 of the Big Book as a mistake. Many people don’t understand this one. However, when you allow your fright to take over your life, you are holding yourself back. You are letting fear and your frightened sensations to stop you from being your true self and from doing things. While some fear is good, many alcoholics are held back in their relationships because of it. This can harm the other person.

When you are attending an alcohol treatment center, you can work on assessing your own mistakes. You can work on making amends and living the best recovering lifestyle possible. Making amends is a process and it needs done over and over again. However, by doing it, you are going to improve your life, your relationships, and your overall well-being.

If you need addiction treatment, contact the rehab center today at 888-992-7955.

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Esra Ahmed - MS, NCC, LPC, MHSP
Esra Ahmed - MS, NCC, LPC, MHSP

Experienced Clinical Director with a demonstrated history of working in the hospital & health care industry. Skilled in Anger Management, Healthcare, Medicine, EMDR, and Life Transitions. Strong healthcare services professional with a Masters Degree focused in Psychology from The University of Memphis.

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