Addiction is Real. Here’s How to Beat It

Addiction is real

Have you known an addict or been an addict? Are you an addict now?

Unfortunately, addictions come with the human condition. We’ve got alcoholics, drug addicts, sex addicts, workaholics, self-mutilators, and more. You name it, our culture has found it and become addicted to it.

Addiction is defined as anything we do repeatedly that causes harm to ourselves and/or others. The underlying driver to addiction is a general dissatisfaction with your life, your self-image, or identity. In extreme cases, an intense self-hatred and a sense of hopelessness and despair are the foundations of addiction.
Are you saying to yourself right now, “I can’t think of anything I’m addicted to”? Well, I’d say to you, “Come on. We’re all addicted to something.” If you don’t think that’s true of you, look through this list with me.

Are you addicted to:

  • Achievement – Always needing to perform to feel valuable
  • Self-Pity – Constant feeling of “poor me” and “life is unfair”
  • Worry – A consistent lack of peace
  • Drinking – You need a drink to be happy, sleep, or feel connected to people
  • Being Busy – If you’re alone or still, you feel depressed or lonely
  • Sex – You can’t stop viewing porn, quit masturbating , or view the others without sexual thoughts.
  • Social Media – You’re constantly connected to your phone or computer, ignoring the people right in front of you
  • Gambling – A need to take risk, make money, and feel valued from winning
  • Self-Sabotage – You can’t hold on to a relationship, you screw up great opportunities, and you can’t allow yourself to succeed.

Yes, you can be addicted to so-called positive things such as achievement. Look at Dale Partridge for example. He struggled with a serious addiction of being busy and achievement. Achievement became part of his identity. He started 6 businesses within 8 years producing over $15 million in revenue. But he didn’t know who was apart from outside praise and achievement. His addiction to work and achievement linked directly with a general dissatisfaction, if not, a downright dislike for who he was. He thought that his identity and worth was based solely in what I accomplished instead of who he was.

The bottom line is this: we all just want to be loved. We want to feel loved. We all deserve love. We starve for connectivity and depth, but we’re seriously scared and often times, lack the basic relational ability to reach out and get it.

So, if you had to choose something, what would you say you’re addicted to? Think about your thoughts for the day. Are there patterns? Ruts? Are there places in your mind that you continue to visit and obsess over during each 24-hour period?

What are they? Be brave and write them down. Let’s begin the healing process.

I want you to pay attention here. You deserve better. You deserve more. You were created for awe and purpose. You were created to love and be loved. The things that grip you don’t have to strangle the life out of you. There is hope and there is a way out.

Today begin telling yourself the opposite of the lies in your head. Begin practicing love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness and self-control. Tell a trusted friend about your addiction. Reach out. Call a group. Don’t wait. This is your life we’re talking about.

You deserve normal. You deserve love, balance, joy, peace, and success. Go after it.

Advertisements

Ways to Replace Temptation with Self Control

Surfing the internet this morning, I couldn’t help but share this write up from daily positives.

Overall, I would consider myself a fairly controlled person. Yet when it comes to men, food, and social drinking – sayonara! As much fun as it might be at the time, the regret of: “Man, I told myself I would be in control this time” that comes later is not a good feeling.

Sound familiar?

Saying you want one thing and doing the complete opposite can create a lot of unnecessary chaos in life.

Not only does being impulsive throw off our equilibrium, but it also takes away from our broader personal goals.

When it comes down to avoiding what’s good for us or making decisions we will regret later, it’s a matter of exercising self control and learning how to BUILD that muscle.

Yet, this tends to be easier said than done and requires a conscious, mindful effort.

Here are 5 simple ways to practice more self control during the moments that tempt you most. Pick at least 2 you can use right now, practice them for 7 days, and see what a difference it makes!

1. Be Honest About Your Temptations

The first step is being truthful with yourselfabout what your temptations are, so you know how to manage them in the future.

What situations, without fail, always leave you saying, “I wish I didn’t do that”?

For example, if you know you can’t have chips in the house without finishing the entire bag upon opening them, deciding not to buy them in the first place is a good starting point. Recognizing the temptations lets you help prevent them before you’ve gone too deep.

2. Quit Cold Turkey

While we want to believe we are strong enough to overcome temptation when faced with it (or at least try to), avoiding the temptation altogether is the only guarantee for doing so.

Living in extremes can require quitting in extremes.

Try a 30-day alcohol free month, social media detox challenge, or cut off communication from a toxic relationship.

3. Recognize Your Long-Term Goals & Tie the Present Moment to Them

When avoiding your temptation triggers may not be an option, consider your long-term goals before engaging in a potential regretful activity.

Living for short-term gratification can seem harmless, but has the ability to negatively impact your aspirations down the line.

Make sure that a Wednesday night Happy Hour is really worth the lost productivity at work the next day!

4. Get an Accountability Partner

Having an accountability partner (or group) is a great way to stay on track for any goal, and becoming more self-disciplined is no exception.

It’s always easier to assess a situation and see clearly when you’re not directly in it.

So the next time you’re feeling tempted, call a friend for encouragement and reminders to help you choose positively, wisely and in alignment with your goal/s.

5. Listen to & Trust the “Good” Shoulder Angel

We all have the little voice that tells us not to do something, and the one that tells us to do it anyway.

Impulsiveness is often engaging in something that goes against our better judgment, and against our values.

So the next time you feel conflicted, stop and make a deliberate choice to do the opposite of what you might want to do. Over time, this will become second nature.

Ultimately, every choice in life has a consequence. It is rewarding to engage in decisions that bring you closer to the person you want to be (the person you really are deep down!).

After awhile, you’ll be able to appreciate the peace which comes from aligning what you say you want with your actions. You will live from a place of equilibrium.

Credit: Ashley David

Does Being Labeled As Gifted Undermine Personal Growth?

Stanford psychologist, Carol Dweck, has spent her career studying the mental phenomena that lead to success. The Effort Effect provides an overview of her findings.

Why do some people reach their potential, while others with equal or greater talent fail?

The answer, according to Dweck, is attitude. In fact, Dweck has observed that believing in fixed intelligence can undermine a person’s ability to succeed.

Many people who believe in fixed intelligence also think you shouldn’t need hard work to do well. This belief isn’t entirely irrational, she says. A student who finishes a problem set in 10 minutes is indeed better at math than someone who takes four hours to solve the problems. And a soccer player who scores effortlessly probably is more talented than someone who’s always practicing. “The fallacy comes when people generalize it to the belief that effort on any task, even very hard ones, implies low ability,” Dweck says.

This fallacy leads people to view set backs as personal failures rather than opportunities for growth.

Students for whom performance is paramount want to look smart even if it means not learning a thing in the process. For them, each task is a challenge to their self-image, and each setback becomes a personal threat.

Is Being Gifted Harmful?

As a person labeled ‘gifted’ as an adolescent, this article lead me to reflect on my own intellectual development.
Has being ‘gifted’ undermined my achievement? Possibly.

When you’re ‘gifted’ expectations change. Intelligence becomes your identity. Everyone knows you’re supposed to do well in school. When you don’t surpass other students with ease you feel like a failure.

Having your identity tarnished is very threatening.

If you do live up to expectations, you start to believe you really are gifted, and that your natural gifts will carry you to immense personal success. This leads to an inflated ego and underdeveloped work ethic.

Did this hurt me? It’s possible, but I wouldn’t want to use it as an excuse for personal shortcomings.

Still, I’m optimistic. At least I’ve realized that being ‘gifted’ doesn’t get you anywhere in the real world. That’s something they should teach in schools.