"Working Step Seven" by: Marie B.

Step Seven: “Humbly asked our Higher Power to remove our shortcomings.”

These few words are quite powerful in releasing the burden of our codependent tendencies. The load gets so much lighter.

When I envision asking my Higher Power to remove my shortcomings, I imagine my shortcomings as small cloth-wrapped pouches. I offer the packages up in my open palms and hope that they float away like helium balloons.

I cannot expect anything of my Higher Power, but I can humbly ask for my Higher Power to remove my shortcomings.

It is important to remember that we developed these maladaptive coping mechanisms and dysfunctional patterns of behavior throughout our lives. That took years, and we have repeated these behaviors for decades. The “first pass” of this step might take a few days, weeks, or months, but the truth is that I will be asking my Higher Power to remove my shortcomings for many years to come, as I continually become aware of them.

We might feel lonely without our shortcomings.

One person in our group described this process like the tide—she felt her old life go out, and she was waiting for her new life to “come in.” Unfortunately, it doesn’t come overnight from Amazon! In our group, we talk about “Bambi legs”—as we live our lives without our shortcomings, we build confidence as we gain experience and learn what to do. In many ways, we are re-learning how to live. Our legs become stronger as we work our recovery.

As I close this blog post, I wonder:

  • How do you envision humbly asking your Higher Power to remove your shortcomings?

  • After your tried-and-not-so-true behaviors (shortcomings) are removed, how will you know if you are practicing healthier behaviors?

  • How will you know if you are resistant to letting go of a shortcoming? What would be a reason to hold on to a shortcoming instead of letting your Higher Power remove it?

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