Step 5 Worksheet

Step 5 – I admit to God, to myself and to another human being the exact nature of my wrongs.

  • After working through the fourth step questions, what do you realize about your limitations and capabilities?


  • Describe any person who has helped you to see yourself more clearly and objectively in your process of recovery and of life.


  • What qualities would you like to have in a sponsor? How do the people in the list of possible sponsors measure up to these criteria?


  • Write down the names of the most trustworthy people that you know. Do you think that they would be willing or interested in being a sponsor for you?


  • Describe your feelings and expectations about sharing your fifth step with your sponsor.


  • List people that you can think of that you might share your story with. Write whether you think that they are a safe, risky or a bad choice to work your 5th step with:

Person                                              Safe, Risky or Bad choice


  • Describe who you have chosen to be your sponsor and how they reacted when you approached them.


  • Describe what it was like in sharing the fifth step. How did you feel before, after and during the process? Are you glad that you have done this?


  • Describe any celebrations or activities that you have done in honor of completing the fifth step.

Step 5 – Feelings of Shame


BIBLE READING:  John 8:3-11

 Step Five – “We admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.”


Shame has kept many of us in hiding.  The thought of admitting our sins and revealing ourself to other human beings stirs up feelings of shame and the fear of being publicly exposed.

“The teachers of religious law and Pharisees brought a woman they had caught in the act of adultery.  They put her in front of the crowd.  ‘Teacher,’ they said to Jesus, ‘…the law of Moses says to stone her.  What do you say?’…Jesus stooped down and wrote in the dust with his finger  They kept demanding an answer, so He stood up again and said, ‘All right, stone her.  But let those who have never sinned throw the first stones!’  Then he stooped down again and wrote in the dust.  When the accusers heard this, they slipped away one by one…until only Jesus was left in the middle of the crowd with the woman” (John 8:3-9).

Many believe that it was Jesus’ writing in the dust that caused the accusers to leave.  Perhaps he was listing the secret sins of the Jewish leaders.  If this is true, it gives us a beautiful picture of the kind of person Jesus is—a person to whom we can safely expose our secrets.  Our confessor needs to be someone who is not surprised by sin and will not be waiting to condemn us.  Such a person needs to take private note of our wrongs, writing them in the soft dust, not etching them in stone and posting them in public.  Since shame can be a trigger for addictive behavior, we need to be careful about whom we choose to confide in.