Maturity Growing Into Self
ADDICTION is a search for immature gratificationsit is an over-concentration on oneself resembling that of a dependent child. As a result, overcoming addiction requires growing up and assuming adult roles. In this process you learn to take responsibility not only for yourself and your own behavior but for other people in your life. One natural outgrowth of this mature outlook is that you may no longer see yourself as powerless or label yourself an addict. You may no longer feel any need for the addiction, so it ceases to have any presence in your life.
The addiction field has an evocative term for this phenomenonmaturing out. Many people once addicted to heroin or other so-called hard drugs often use this term. The typical reason former heroin habitues give for outgrowing their addiction is that they are tired of the lifestylebeing on the outside, being cut off from normal life, the constant hustling and evading the law, the absence of anything new or better stretching out before them.
Certainly, maturing out is not limited to heroin it happens with all addictions, including alcohol, sex, and gambling. As you mature, you become dissatisfied with your limitations. You develop more connections to life, through marriage, parenthood, or career accomplishments. While undergoing these external developments, you simultaneously experience critical internal emotional changes. At the same time, your self-image and identity change.
7.1. Gaining a Positive Identity
How To Deal With Addiction When Its Someone Else That Has The Problem
Dealing with addiction is commonly said to only be possible when someone is ready to face their problem. That is true to a certain extent but it is possible to begin dealing with addiction even when the person isnt yet ready to get help.
When you care about someone who has an addiction, you can take steps to help them begin to see their problem.
This includes educating yourself about addiction and treatment, learning how best to raise the issue with them and to communicate positively and compassionately and doing so as much as you can. Recognising that you may need support too and seeking that out yourself is another powerful step you can take.
A Willingness To Change
People often say, the first step to getting help is admitting you have a problem. But at Turnbridge, we believe the initial step to recovery, more than anything, is a combination of recognition and readiness: not only do you need to be aware of your drug habit, you must also be ready to address it.
The key to a successful recovery starts with the active decision to make a change a change to better your mind, your body, your relationships, your outlook, and your sense of self. A change to move away from the drug-using lifestyle youve come to know so well. A change in your friend groups and what you do in your free time. A change in your mindset and attitude towards life.
For most people battling drug addiction, this first step is often the hardest. And it doesnt always happen right away. For some, this willingness does not develop until weeks into a rehab program, and that is okay. We understand that change can be scary its unfamiliar territory. If you are here, though, you have likely already decided that something has got to give. There are reasons you want to live sober. There is something inside telling you its time to take the leap. You dont have to do it alone. A professional treatment center like Turnbridge can support you through the entire recovery process.
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Replace Your Old Habits With New Similar Ones
Finding something similar to your bad habit can help you easily replace it. If you only have the choice to give into your habit or stay at an equilibrium, your habit will likely influence your choosing. If you have two choices, one new choice and one old choice, you have a better chance at picking the new choice that will help you form a positive habit since it puts you at an elevated level compared to where you were before.
For example, when someone who uses drugs feel stressed, they are more inclined to use the drugs than to not use the drugs and deal with stress on their own. Using the drugs puts them at a higher point than before but not using keeps them at the same stressful level. Instead, if you have the option to use drugs or go for a walk to get rid of stress you might pick going for a walk since the walk will likely de-stress your mind and body and put you at a better state than before.
If you drink alcohol when going out with friends and want to get sober, try a new non-alcoholic drink. You will still enjoy having something in your hand and tasting a good drink , but this time it wont be giving into your bad habit. As you start to replace your bad choices with better choices, you will likely reach for the better choice first, without even contemplating it!
How To Fight And Beat Addiction On Your Own Without Rehab
Are you ready to fight and beat addiction?
Fortunately, your being here reading this suggests that youre ready to accept a life-change, which is a critical step on the way to recovery.
Of course, you may already have tried to overcome addiction in the past but have found it difficult to keep the momentum going.
If so, then youre understandably discouraged, but dont give up! No matter how many times you have tried before, its likely that you will achieve the change that youre seeking with the right approach and support, you can develop a more healthful and balanced lifestyle. In fact, youll soon see that recovery, even without rehab, is more common than not. Really! And well prove it to you throughout this guide.
In short, the way to beat addiction is to make your urge to use or to act on your addiction a secondary factor in your life by clarifying, recognizing, honoring and living by your most authentic values that make you who you are. Admittedly, this is easier said than done but the fundamental elements of recovery are well-understood. Thats why weve made this guide available to you.
This comprehensive guide is designed to help when you are ready to begin your fight with an addiction. Use it at your leisure we hope it brings you great value.
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Seek Alternative Sources Of Pleasure
You can still experience bliss in life without having to consume hallucinogens or alcohol, betting all your money at the casino, or watching mind-numbing programs on TV. Everyone wants to feel good. Unfortunately, mass media and societal norms encourage unhealthy ways of attaining pleasure. Because of social engineering, many people are convinced that mind-altering substances, lustful relationships, material items, food, and technological gadgets will pave the way to a higher state of existence.
However, the brain receptors eventually build a tolerance to these stimuli as they become overwhelmed. Therefore, they release less and less dopamine over time. Therefore, you have to ingest more of the substance, spend even more money, or seek out more unfulfilling, shallow relationships to release the same amount of dopamine. The brain then becomes conditioned to receive these rewards over and over again, and the cravings get harder to handle.
In order to truly overcome an addiction, you need to reflect deeply on your life and figure out why you choose harmful substances and behaviors to fill the emptiness. Start replacing destructive practices with more wholesome activities or foods, like exercising and consuming more fruits and vegetables. Fill your life with a wide variety of fun, engaging activities that will make you feel satisfied and happy so that you dont resort to quick fixes to achieve the same goal.
How Addiction Affects Life
There are several means of substance misuse, such as Alcohol, Cocaine, Drugs, and so on. But by no means can any of this be justified as an advantageous thing for humans to do. No addiction is protected or free of harm. Anyone who consumes an abundance of drugs or alcohol could put their life at risk. It also affects the personal, professional, and social life of the person suffering from the addiction as their health can deteriorate over time.
Misuse of any means of drugs or alcohol can ruin the lives of those struggling. It impacts every facet of their life by influencing them financially, healthily, and socially. For anyone struggling out there, I would advise you to seek help as I want to help you turn your life around as soon as possible.
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How To Deal With Addiction
Dealing with addiction requires an understanding of what addiction is and what it is not.
Addiction is not:
- a choice
- something that can be overcome with willpower alone
- about people desiring to continue their addictive behaviour. Often giving up is the thing they want more than anything.
- likely something some people are predisposed or more vulnerable to than others
- very often a failed coping mechanism. So often, the behaviour begins as a conscious or unconscious attempt to forget past trauma, gain a sense of confidence, attempt to escape anxiety or depression, for example.
- something people can move on from, even if they have tried and failed before.
Tips To Overcome Internet Addiction
If you find in it inevitable to look at your phone again and again, checking your social media accounts, and signing in frequently, you might be suffering from internet addiction. Internet addiction happens when you get dependant on the use of internet whether it is texting, constantly peeking, or using social media. Professionals have compared this addiction to drug addiction because it impacts your health, work performance, daily life, engagement with others, and mental process the same way drugs do.
Throughout 2014, around 420 million people were addicted to the internet. The American Psychiatric Association has also stated that kids of age 13-17 are almost online constantly. Such statistics show that internet addiction is getting more common and real day by day. If you find yourself or your loved one suffering with this, there are a few things that can be done to overcome it. Such as:
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Quitting An Addictive Behavior
Quitting is a different experience for everyone. Some find the process liberating and empowering, and feel they can achieve anything. Others find it painful, difficult, and frustrating, sometimes needing many failed attempts before achieving their goal. Still others discover new sides to themselves during the quitting process .
There is no “right” way to feel while you are quitting. But if you are feeling depressed or find yourself constantly wanting to return to the addictive behavior, you should seek support and treatment.
Ways To Overcome Any Addiction
People can fall victim to many types of addiction. Some of the most prevalent ones are drugs and alcohol, food, gambling, social media and television, and sex. Addicts of any behavior, activity, or substance just want to experience something that makes them feel pleasure in order to escape reality.
After feeling that high the first time, the person becomes hooked due to the release of dopamine into the part of the brain that registers pleasure. That center also plays a role in learning and memory. So, compulsive behavior starts when the brain responds to a gratifying substance or activity by releasing large amounts of dopamine. Then the reward circuit in the brain stores these memories of satisfaction, making you crave more.
While it may seem like addiction happens whether you want it to or not, you can actually overcome compulsive behavior using these simple, yet powerful methods.
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Overcoming Addiction Through Increasing Self
Self-efficacy is really self-confidence, or a belief in your ability to successfully handle lifes challenges.
When it comes to drug and alcohol use, those who are highly confident that they can stay sober and clean are more likely to successfully complete treatment and maintain their sobriety.10
How do you develop more self-efficacy?
Building strong coping skills through cognitive behavioral therapy and then successfully bringing those to bear in everyday life is the best way to shore up belief in yourself.
In fact, a 2005 study identified coping skills as central to relapse prevention.11
Coping skills involve building communication, social and problem-solving skills. Each time you use these newfound skills in life instead of turning to drugs and alcohol, you have a mastery experience. In turn, each mastery experience builds your belief in yourself as someone who can successfully cope without illicit substances.
A Sober Support Network
Recovery is a journey, one with ups and downs and highs and lows. You should never have to walk it alone. While the right treatment program will have 24/7 support staff available to you, it is vital to grow other sober, supportive relationships throughout your recovery journey. Building positive relationships with people who bolster your recovery, who encourage you to stay sober, will be essential to your long-term success. These may be people in your treatment program, in your 12-step meetings, or on your sober baseball team. These may be family members or friends who have made an active choice to stay away from drugs. These may be people in your church, recovery support group, or sober living home. These are people who relate to you, who understand you, and who will be there to answer your call. These people will become your sober support network.
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Distance Yourself From People Who Encourage Addictions
If you want to eliminate drugs and alcohol from your life, dont hang out at bars with former drinking buddies. Nor should you surround yourself with drug abusers.
Instead, find people who value healthy lifestyles and more positive habits, like exercising, playing music, eating nourishing foods, and following their passions in life. Your current friends may not understand why you cant include them in your life anymore, but you have to do whatever will help you break free of harmful habits.
Ultimately, you get to choose your own friends. So make sure you surround yourself with uplifting people who have your best interest at heart.
What Is Sexual Addiction
Id say the biggest thing that most people dont understand about sexual addiction is that sex addiction isnt about sex. The way that I see it, sexual addiction is more about shame, isolation, adrenaline, and unworthiness than it is about chasing after sexual experiences.
Or, as one SAA member once so eloquently put it in a meeting that I attended, When I act out with sex workers, Im not thinking to myself Oh boy, this is going to be super fun!. But rather, Im thinking I have such a tornado of pain inside of myself that I either have to kill myself or compulsively act out to numb the pain.’
Compulsive sexual behaviour is what sex addicts use to numb out their emotions, just like alcoholics often use staying drunk to avoid feeling their underlying difficult emotions.
Sexual addiction, just like any drug addiction, can have a sliding scale of symptoms ranging in severity. For some people, sex addiction looks like chronic masturbation to porn, where they dont feel like they can function in society without climaxing at least seven times a day. For others, sex addiction could look like occasional flare ups of wanting to use or act out with sex workers only when theyre going through emotionally trying times .
Ive met hundreds of sex addicts and there is no singular unifying theme that connects all addicts at least not in terms of how they like to act out sexually.
If the behaviour has control over you, then it has likely become a problem in your life.
Also Check: How Do You Help Someone With An Addiction
Find 3other Ways To Meet The Addiction Needs
In step 1, we identified the needsthe addiction is trying to meet. Now come up with 3 other healthy ways that couldalso meet the same needs as the old addictive behavior. When you find otherways to meet these needs, the addictive behavior can naturally reduce or stop.
If you need alcohol to relax and switch off, think of 3 other ways that could help you relax? Maybe meditation, going to the gym, reading, or listening to music. Perhaps its spending more time with friends. There are so many ways, just find those that help you the most.
Popular Substance Abuse Recovery Programs
When a person with an addiction seeks treatment, odds are they will be directed to a 12-step recovery program such as Alcoholics Anonymous , Narcotics Anonymous or similar spiritual approach to recovery. The AA model was developed by Dr. Bob Smith and Bill Wilson in 1935, and remains the traditional model for addiction recovery in the U.S. It works like this: You admit that you are powerless over the substance or situation, you recognize that a higher power can restore your sobriety, you examine past mistakes with the help of a sponsor and make amends, then you learn to live by a new code of behavior and agree to help others who suffer from the same addiction.
There are other popular out-patient addiction recovery approaches as well. These include motivational techniques, cognitive behavioral therapy and SMART Recovery, a support group model that employs a 4-Point program of building and maintaining motivation, coping with urges, managing thoughts, feelings and behaviors, and living a balanced life. Unlike AA, SMART Recovery does not accept that individuals are powerless, but rather helps participants find their strengths and use them.
When all else fails, there is jail! Of course, this usually is not a solution.
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