Step 4

Made a searching and fearless moral and financial inventory of ourselves

In order to attain a more meaningful life, the compulsive gambler must undergo a complete and thorough self-appraisal. Acceptance of one’s shortcomings is a pre-requisite to correcting them. Members strive to find the truth about themselves, for in the truth is freedom to choose the many alternatives and opportunities that life presents.

In order to make a complete moral inventory, members must examine, to the best of their ability, all aspects of their character. All negative characteristics should be examined, such as:

  • selfishness
  • greed
  • procrastination
  • anger
  • envy
  • pride
  • laziness
  • resentment
  • self-pity
  • jealousy
  • insincerity
  • self-deception
  • impatience
  • intolerance
  • pessimism
  • dishonesty

Equally important, however, is the acknowledgement of all one’s positive characteristics, such as:

  • friendliness
  • optimism
  • empathy
  • industriousness
  • humility
  • kindness
  • dignity
  • tolerance
  • honesty

Members are urged to make a written inventory; nothing should be withheld.

In Gamblers Anonymous, the financial inventory is as important as the moral inventory. members make a list of all monies owed as a result of gambling activities, such as loans, bad checks, thefts and other debts. In addition, they itemize their financial assets and income.

The moral and financial inventories are as important to established members as they are to newcomers. By making these inventories an ongoing process, members continually assess their character. In this way, new defects can be recognized and growth can be measured. Because money is an integral part of gambling, the compulsive gambler must use the financial inventory, together with the moral inventory, to begin a true character change.