By Paula Bianchi –
Depending on the person, addiction can be an extremely hard mind game. The purpose of addiction is to fill some kind of void that either you, or the people around you, can’t fill, or to help you forget, or cope, with whatever struggles you’re having from the negativity of people’s actions against you.
When we’re born, we’re a clean slate. Our brains are empty computers waiting for data to be downloaded. The things we know, as babies, are hunger, sleep, and discomfort. The only way a baby can communicate their needs or discomfort is to cry. This is the first time when parents get a glimpse of their child’s personality. Some babies may fuss a bit to communicate their needs, and the parents are successful in understanding their cues. Others may cry and cry until their needs or discomfort is finally met. Then, there’s the babies whose needs and discomfort aren’t being met because of neglectful or abusive parents. Our upbringing sets the stage for the rest of our lives.
As we grow, we have the tendency to emulate our parents and their beliefs because they’ve been downloading information into to us ever since we were born. It isn’t until we venture out into school that we learn how different life is for other kids our age. It’s during middle school that kids become more aware of drugs and alcohol. Some may learn even earlier because of the environment they’re raised in.
Every day when they go to school, they see the click of kids who engage in drug use, and they have to decide if they’re going to join them or not. There are some who will join, but only a few of them will end up with a drug addiction that they’ll carry with them for the rest of their lives.
For some people, their addiction grows slowly over time, and they’ve learned all the tricks to keep it hidden from family and friends, so they don’t feel they have a problem because, luckily, their addiction hasn’t messed up their lives yet. These are your functioning addicts. The one’s you never would’ve guessed had a problem.
Most addicts can’t hide their addiction though. They end up in rehabs trying to kick their habit. Some will be successful and never return to rehab again. Others may take a little longer because they relapse during pivotal moments and some may end up in the hospital due to an overdose.
Others may dive deeper into their addiction and find themselves lost in the culture that surrounds it. Untrustworthy friends, being cut off from family or friends, run ins with the police, and time spent in jail, can be the consequences of this lifestyle. It’s usually at this point when family and friends may pull away from their loved one because they can’t bear to watch their loved ones decline, or our loved one may pull away from us in an attempt to protect us from getting tangled up in that culture.
They say it usually takes us hitting rock bottom before we’ll finally go get help. The sad part is many of us can hit bottom more than once. Family members may give ultimatums and make their loved one go seek help. They watch the struggle the addict goes through coming to terms with their problem. Even if they don’t understand what they’re going through, they still have empathy for their loved one, and can see how difficult the journey may be. But family can only do so much, and if, sadly, their loved one chooses to continue living in this kind of negative lifestyle, they may have to choose to let their loved one go.
A lot of times, the addict is so caught up in their world that they don’t take the time to imagine what they’re putting their family through. Because they want to continue with their addiction, they push their family away. To listen to family means hearing the good common sense they make about the negative choices they’ve seen their loved one make. The first step in getting better is: Listen to them.
That’s just the first step, of many, on the road to recovery, but not the key to being successful. There’s only one person, alone, who can help an addict, and that’s the addict themselves. That’s right. You’re the key. No matter how many times we seek treatment, the only way we’ll overcome it is if we truly want to. We must do it for ourselves. It’s our responsibility to make ourselves happy in a positive way.
Here are some tips that may help you win your mind game:
- Be fully committed to the fact that you’re done and want to quit your addiction.
- Take control of your inner dialog and be strong with your resolve to silence the babbler in your head. You know, the voice telling you to use again.
- Distance yourself from that world and its culture, also from the friends that inhabit that space.
- Join a group of like-minded people that share your same goal.
- Build a support system of family and friends who want to see you succeed.
- If you’ve tried all of the above, and you’re still struggling, seek out professional help and find a therapist you feel comfortable with.
- Start journaling. It helps to get all those unwanted thoughts out of you, and it’s a way to help you focus on the positive, not the negative.
- Pick 3 words that inspire you to help you on your journey. Repeat these words in your head to help quiet the babbler and keep you on track.
Hopefully, these tips can help you keep your eye on the goal. You can apply these to just about every kind of addiction. Now it’s up to you. Are you ready to begin your first chapter of an addiction free life? Don’t forget; where your thoughts go, your energy flows.
In my next article, I’ll post my last psychic seminar story. Sorry I missed Friday’s post, but it was for a happy occasion. My daughter married the man of her dreams. It was beautiful. Thanks for stopping by and take care. Bye for now.