Step 4 Inventory guide

How to Work the AA 4th Step of Alcoholics Anonymous

4th Step Advice

“You can not solve a problem on the same level of mind that created it” -Albert Einstein

It is highly suggested to have a sponsor before working the 4th step. Its tough to fix something with a broken tool.

4th Step Review:

A. Complete steps: 1, 2 and 3 before looking at or proceeding with step 4. (Keep it in the day/step)

B.  Please read from the bottom of page 63 through page 65 in the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous before beginning.

Step 4 Instructions:

In order to do a thorough house cleaning you are going to take three inventories as outlined in the book Alcoholics Anonymous. The first Inventory is of your past and present resentments, called your resentment inventory.

The next inventory will be about fears, and all things that make you nervous, anxious or afraid.

The last inventory is of your sex conduct.

Begin by praying for willingness and an open-mind, also pray for all persons concerned with your writing. (ya, all of them!)

First list all your resentments in column 1 of the resentment worksheet. We complete column 1 first. All inventory worksheets are worked from top to bottom, and not from left to right. We do not move onto column 2 until column one is completed filled out.
Big book reading of the 4th step instructions.

Resentment Inventory Instructions:

Column 1:

List all people, places, things, institutions, ideas or principles with which you are angry with, resentful of, feel hurt or threatened by. What are some situations that upset you? Definition of resentment

Column 2:

Write in column 2 the reason for your resentment: why are/were you resentful, “burned up” or sore at __________? What about them, they, or it make you angry? List all the reasons you have for each name in column 1. You could have more than one resentment toward each person, place or thing. What happened? Be specific, why were you angry, hurt, or threatened.

Column 3:

In column 3 we check off which part of self was affected. Remember, our self-esteem is how we view ourselves. Pride is how we think others view us.

Column 4:

Here we list our part in the resentment, we list where we were at fault (big book instructions for column 4)

What’s the truth here? Where was my responsibility in this resentment, what part do I own? What might I have done differently?

Resentment Work Sheet

AA 4th step resentment inventory prompt sheet

The Seven Parts of Self Defined:

  • Self Esteem – How I Think of Myself
  • Pride – How I Think Others View Me
  • Pocketbook – Basic Desire for Money,Property, Possessions, Financial Security
  • Emotional Security – General Sense of Personal Well Being
  • Ambitions – Our Plans – Our Wants – Our Desires
  • Personal Relations – Our Relationships With Other People
  • Sex Relations – Basic Drive For Sexual Intimacy

Fear Inventory  Instructions

aa 4th step fear worksheet - prompt sheet

Sex Worksheet Example Sex Inventory Instructions

AA forth step sex prompt sheet - worksheet

List all names, Harm Done, Where were we at fault?
Whom did we hurt? What should we have done instead?

7 Responses to Step 4 Inventory guide

  1. Pingback: Step 4 - SoberRecovery : Alcoholism Drug Addiction Help and Information

  2. michael s. says:

    How long do steps 1 through nine actially take.

    • John Doe says:

      If you take longer than a month. I would suggest you aren’t working it as if your life depends on it…

    • Fred C says:

      Michael S, there is no timeline for the steps per se. Some folks race through them in the first few months of sobriety and others take longer. I struggled with steps 1-3, and while I stayed sober and didn’t drink, it was a year before I started Step 4 and that was the way my sponsor worked it with me.

      I immediately did my 5th step with him after finishing my 4th step.

      It took me a good year to work through steps 6-9 as I had many people to make amends to.

      Don’t overlook steps 6-7 as the foundation for making amends, one has to be willing to have God remove the character flaws and then ask Him to do so.

      One day at a time brother!

    • Rich D. says:

      There are different lengths of time for different people. I read the big book from cover to cover in the penitentiary and began to go through the steps listed in chapter five. Then when I got out, another person took me through the steps, by reading the first 164 pages to me, one week at a time for about an hour and a half each week.
      The fist step was found in The Dr’s Opinion and the first three chapters. Step two was found in chapter four. Step three and for were found in chapter five. Step six-eleven were found in chapter six. And step twelve was found in chapter seven.
      Other people may do it differently. I’ve heard back to the basics goes through the steps in for sessions.
      Thanks, Rich

    • Amanda says:

      As long as it takes you. there really is no set amount of time in which the steps take. it’s your willingness and how much you work. :)

  3. Graham says:

    It just depends how willing and open-minded you are. Some are more sick than others so there is really no set time. You just do them one at a time, in order (They’re numbered for a reason) and with your sponsor from start to finish. (The steps weren’t meant to be worked alone.) I can tell you from my own experience that aa has changed my life more than anything else I’ve ever experienced and it’s all good changes. I hope you stick with it.

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