12 Steps: Step 7 – Appealing to a Higher Power

Step 7 of the 12 steps is the next logical step after accepting one’s character defects exactly as they are (which is no small feat in itself) and then becoming willing to let go of them. Too often, people only want to see the best in themselves, and push the things that they don’t like to the background. Step 6 challenges 12-step group members to look at the things that they aren’t comfortable with or proud of and accept them as part of the package that makes them who they are.

In step 7, the focus is on humility. No amount of determination will remove these shortcomings. Only a Higher Power can do that. In order to get help with this step, a person needs to know exactly which traits they want to have removed. The homework involved in doing the soul searching and admitting the nature of one’s wrongs all form the basis for getting ready for this important step.

Help To Remove A Variety Of Shortcomings In Step 7 Of The 12 Steps

What types of shortcomings could someone ask for help with while working step 7? Addiction is a disease that robs people of many things, including their relationships with family members and friends. “Faults” that may need to be removed can range from being dishonest about whether or not a person has been using to denial and self-centeredness.

Family members and friends of addicts have no doubt been lied to more times than they can count, and a fault that could be on the list may be that of lying or being untruthful. It’s not uncommon for people who are in the active stages of addiction to steal to support a habit, and that shortcoming needs to be on the list, if applicable.

Addiction also makes people quite selfish, in that they only see the world and people in it in terms of how they can be used to reach their goal of feeding their addiction. Anyone who gets in the way of that may be treated with anger and resentment. Another fault that may need to be removed during Step 7 could be any remaining resentment toward family members and friends.

Turn Shortcomings Over To A Higher Power

Once a person working this step knows exactly what help is needed, they can go to their Higher Power (however they perceive it) and ask for assistance with their shortcomings. This is a deeply humbling experience that prepares program members for the next step: Making a list of all persons we had harmed, and becoming willing to make amends to them all.

Serenity at Summit offers expert, compassionate 12-step group therapy on a residential basis in Massachusetts.

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