What is Addiction?

Put simply it is 90% thinking and 10% indulging in your addiction.

The good news is, that it is possible to combat addiction and change the addictive behaviours. The first step is knowing that you really want to do it, the second step is asking for help. If you truly want to change something, then it really is possible. If we understand that we can change our thought process and we learn to change the way we speak to ourselves, we can change the way we think, we can learn to stop the thoughts that lead to indulgence or destructive behaviours. If we change our thoughts to a more productive way of thinking, we can create a more positive outcome. Of course, this is not an overnight process, especially for someone who has an addiction, but the good news is, it really is possible. All hope is not lost!

Once we learn that the way we speak to ourselves creates the outcome in our lives, this is a great way to identify what we are actually telling ourselves. All too often we are talking negatively to ourselves or about ourselves. If someone was with us 24/7, 365 days of the year and they were talking negatively to us, this of course would have a negative impact on us, but isn’t this what we are doing to ourselves? When we start to work on changing this, we can achieve anything we set our minds to, including changing addictive behaviours. The question is, are you ready to change?

We can learn that when we find ourselves in a negative spiral of thoughts we can “Stop” and change what we are saying to ourselves. We can also find techniques to work with when we find ourselves in these situations. Even if we feel overwhelmed and we just stop and take a relaxing breath, this is taking our thoughts away from the overwhelming thoughts we are having in the moment which could lead to giving into addiction.

Once you find which tools work best for you (there are many coping mechanisms, tools), if you find yourself in a situation which you feel could lead to an outcome of giving into your addiction. You can “stop your thoughts” and you can then start to focus on positives. Change the chatter in your mind. If you really want something for yourself, if you really believe in yourself but know that it is going to take work and you are willing to do the work. You CAN achieve the outcome that you really want for yourself!

There will be times when you do find it difficult but challenge what you are telling yourself, for instance… if you are telling yourself I need to indulge my addiction, what will the outcome be for you and those around you? If you give into the cravings, how will this affect you or your life? But if you stop and you tell yourself, I have had these feelings/cravings before and I allowed them to pass and if I distract myself, they will pass again. This is teaching us that we choose the outcome for ourselves, we just have to decide which outcome it is that we want.

Learn which coping mechanisms work best for you, we are all different and we must learn what will be most effective for us as an individual. I always say, if someone tells you to go to the gym and you hate the gym, you will give up so find what interests you and do that. Otherwise, you are forcing yourself to do to many things that you don’t want to do, and you will give up and won’t achieve your goal of giving up addiction.

This is not an individual journey so you should not feel alone, it is a collaboration and we do need support around us, your support network can be friends, family, support group or therapist. There are many avenues to take so work out which works for you and start the process. Be around people who support you, not judge you, who are there for you as its not going to be easy but again, it is going to be worth it.

There are many programs to follow but understanding that our thoughts are what create our outcome is the first step!

What do you want for you? Work out what that is. Now get to the business of making it happen for you.

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