First let me explain what an addiction is. Addiction is often forced into a behavior that provides short-term relief but causes long-term damage in any area of your life (health, relationships, finances, work, etc.). The important word here is forced.
Addiction is a formidable challenge. Not because addictive behaviors are difficult to quit once the addict realizes they have it, but because the addiction is clouded by denial, preventing the addict from seeing their actions clearly.
Addicts create denial to protect them from the losses they feel they will suffer if they give up the addicting behavior or substance. Perceived is a very important word here because addicts don’t actually get anything from their addiction at all. Their addiction gradually and systematically destroys every area of the addict’s life until all that remains is the addiction. As every area of the addict’s life is slowly destroyed, the addict becomes more and more dependent on the addiction because it is seen as a pleasure. The key to breaking any addiction is breaking the wrong thinking loop that keeps the addict stuck in this loop. So the good news is that overcoming drug addiction is much easier than we think.
First let’s explore addiction itself. Regardless of the substance or behavior that constitutes the addiction, all addictions have the exact same roots. So an addiction can be to substances such as alcohol, drugs or food, or to behaviors such as gambling or shopping. All addictions serve the same purpose, which is to change how the addict feels. All addictions mask unresolved pain.
Here’s how it works. Addicts have a feeling. Feelings right now can be good or bad. Good feelings make addicts celebrate. If they are obsessed with food, they will celebrate by eating it. Alcoholics drink. A gambler lets himself get a little carried away. If addicts have bad feelings, they indulge in addictive behaviors in an attempt to make themselves feel better. This is the paradox of addiction. A way to heal all emotions! So, as the addictive behavior continues, it naturally grows (I’ll explain why later) and becomes a bigger and bigger part of the addict’s life. In extreme cases, if left unchecked, it can become the only thing in the addict’s life.
Addiction naturally gathers momentum for a number of reasons. The first reason is that addicts think they get some sort of reward from their addiction. This has never been the case. If you enjoy something, you can take part in it and feel better when you’re done. Addicts often feel worse after an addictive behavior. A drinker gets hungover, a shopper feels guilty about the bill they now have to pay, an emotional eater feels guilty about their latest binge, etc. As mentioned earlier, addicts become obsessed with their addictive behavior in order to alter their emotional state. Once a bad mood surfaces after their latest indulgence, what do you think is the first thing they want to do? yes! They will re-indulge in their addictive behavior to get rid of their unwanted feelings. It’s clearly a downward spiral.
The second reason addictive behaviors gather momentum is because it is used as a coping mechanism, but also as a celebration (initially anyway. Once the addiction really takes hold, there is no desire to celebrate anymore). In general, if we are physically healthy and balanced, we can change our emotional state in a number of ways. A few examples are, taking a hot bath, meditating, reading, relaxing and watching a movie, chatting with a friend, etc. Addicts stop looking for new ways to solve challenges and relieve stress. They exploit addiction for instant gratification. This leaves addicts with fewer and fewer coping mechanisms as addiction becomes an increasingly important part of their lives.
A third reason why addictions gain momentum is that addictions are to substances rather than behaviors. If the substance is physically addictive, this further complicates the addiction cycle as the body begins to crave the substance and responds when the substance leaves the body (withdrawal symptoms).
A fourth reason addictions gather momentum is tolerance. Our bodies are amazing and complex machines. If you’re addicted to nicotine or alcohol, try to think back to the first time you smoked or drank alcohol. It tastes disgusting! You feel nauseous, dizzy, and have all sorts of unpleasant sensations in your body. It does this because you poisoned it! This is a warning. Now nature is very smart. Over time, your body assumes that if you keep poisoning it, it’s because you have no choice. So to make you more comfortable, it stops producing warning signs. This means that in order to get any “benefit” from your drug of choice, you have to take more of it. Then your body reacts again to warn you. You ignore the warning, so your body decides to stop warning you, because it thinks you have no choice but to poison yourself, so you have to increase the dose. This is called tolerance. Apparently, as the dose increases, the body is put under more stress as it tries to cope. As our bodies are put under increasing stress, our health and well-being are increasingly compromised. Again, a very painful downward spiral.
So we can now explore how to overcome addiction. As mentioned earlier, difficulty is not an addiction, but an addiction. The addict’s perception of his or her addiction is the challenge. Addiction can be overcome relatively easily if the addict’s mindset is changed. Addicts feel helpless in overcoming their addiction because they think their addicting behavior is precious to them. This is denial. It is this denial that needs to be addressed before the addiction can be addressed, as the addict can clearly see that the addiction is not good for them. It’s actually doing the opposite. It is destroying them. The strongest addictions are actually psychological ones, not physical ones. Physical addictions can often resolve after a few days of detox. If physical addiction is the strongest addictive factor, then after a few days of detoxification, you will be free. As we all know, this is not the case. Psychological addiction is at the root and is caused by wrong and negative thinking. Change the mind and the addiction no longer exists because it is no longer “needed”.
If you think you have a physical addiction, get help because you may need a supervised drug recovery program. With addictive behaviors, your first step is to admit that you have a problem. You don’t have to hit rock bottom to overcome an addiction. People hit rock bottom because they are so afraid of living without their addictive behavior that they continue the behavior until they have nothing left. I promise you. Life without addiction is wonderful. To tell you otherwise is wrong thinking!
Behind an addiction is often unresolved emotional pain. If you have suffered any kind of trauma in the past, please seek help to deal with it now. Avoiding emotional pain won’t help you. You have to learn to work through emotional pain. Don’t let your past determine your future.
Addiction often masks a sense of lack of purpose as well. Addiction can make someone “opt out” of life and sit on the fence just to watch from a distance. We all have skills and talents to share with the world. You are no exception (although you may think you are). Trust me, you have a purpose. Decide today that you will commit to finding and living for it.
As I said before, addiction often masks emotional pain. If you have been traumatized in the past, seek help to process the trauma today, then resolve to make sense of your pain. There are probably thousands of people who have been through similar traumas and could truly benefit from your help, even just to hear your story.
Addiction can also exacerbate emotional pain. When you try to navigate life through the eyes of addiction, you create more challenges for yourself. Your behavior can make people feel helpless and guilty. This has a huge impact on your self esteem which then requires further treatment with an addiction of your choice. be good to yourself. Try to think back to something that once made you happy. Slowly introduce these things into your life. If you try to quit and then relapse, don’t beat yourself up, that will only make your journey more difficult.
Finally, as a homeopath, I have worked with many clients with addictive behaviors. I’ve listed below some remedies that may help you with your addiction recovery. The remedy should be 30c potency and should be taken 3 times a day until you start feeling better. Once you start feeling better, use another remedy only when you start feeling worse.
If you work hard, take this remedy. You may worry about work, eat unhealthy food, and drink to cope. You may be short-tempered and stressed out.
If you are feeling anxious and restless, take this remedy. You may not be eating or have a large appetite. You may feel sick from seeing or smelling food. You’re exhausted but still get things done. You like everything in place.
If you want to be perfect, take this remedy. You may have had abusive or strict parents while you were growing up. You may have had to take on adult responsibilities as a child. You need to be a ‘good girl’ ‘good boy’.
Use this tool if you find it difficult to share your issues with others. You like to cry alone. You don’t like people getting too close. You may like salt. You dwell on past disagreements or negative situations. You find it hard to forgive. This is also good for past unresolved grief/loss.
Use it if you feel like you’re bending over and rocking to win people’s love and approval. You can be needy and clingy. You may cry a lot. You don’t like being alone.
If you have a philosophical approach, take this approach. You probably think more than you do. It is also good for restoring energy as it is depleted due to liver toxicity.
This is a great supplement for people who are emaciated from too many medications. When used with a good diet, it helps strengthen the body.