Fear and the Fourth Step

Inaction breeds doubt and fear. Action breeds confidence and courage. If you want to conquer fear, do not sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy. -Dale Carnegie

Who reading this is sick of me saying that there are no coincidences?  Sorry, but, no coincidence that the day I am attempting to do my “fear inventory” is the same day I am embarking on the legal program I wrote about last week.

When I first started the fourth step inventory, I thought the fear inventory would be the second easiest of the four worksheets (the other three are Resentments, People I Have Harmed, and Sex… if you can’t guess which one will be the easiest than you haven’t been reading my blog very closely).  I don’t, or at least I didn’t, think of myself as a very fearful person.  I don’t worry much about any of the obvious things (probably I should be worrying about)… things like death, car accidents, and the like.

But when I sat down with the worksheet, prayed about it and really took the time, let’s put it this way… I had to go back to the photocopier three additional times to make room for all the fears I actually do have.  And, just a note to those readers who know me personally, yes, I did write down “fear of bedsores” on the worksheet, it should be interesting discussing this fear with my sponsor this weekend when I do my fifth step!

So on this particular day, I am experiencing the Fear of the Unknown, the Fear of Disapproval, the Fear of Confrontation, just to name a few.  What is interesting about this exercise is that just by naming the fears I am having, they seem to lessen in intensity.  As I writing them down for all of you to see, they lessen some more.

So I guess there is something to this whole idea of writing down all the crap in your life… Stay tuned for the outcome of today’s “inauguration,” as well as the completion of the 4th step!


Posted on September 27, 2012, in Recovery and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. I see this frequently with my kids when they are upset about something, mostly because it generally is easier to see “stuff” in others than it is in us. (I think that is why it is so easy and common to judge others .) I think you are touching on a universal truth about fears in that when we don’t fully understand that which we fear we can easily be overwhelmed by it which ultimately is an extension of the fear of the unknown. Breaking down a fear/ problem makes it more manageable but it is still hard for me to remember that in the moment don’t you think? Possibly because there are other fears/distractions clouding the focus… I need to get better at catching myself sooner.


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