But addiction is so much more than this, addiction comes in multiple guises.
It is an insatiable craving and dependence that is uncontrollable and damaging to every part of your life. Addictions can crush relationships, both personal and professional. An addiction can affect your physical and mental well-being and hurt not only yourself, but those around you.
From someone who has never had an addiction, their advice would be to, “just stop”. But you know that you can’t do that. Your addiction won’t necessarily stop because you consciously decide to stop it. Your addiction may lay in the part of the mind that can’t be accessed so easily – the unconscious.
It’s a enormous subject to look at, but I invite you to dip a toe into the true meaning of addiction and whether you may indeed be experience addiction in some way?
- Social Media
- Chocolate / Sugar /Food
- Another person
- Prescription drugs - sleeping pills or painkillers
- Cleaning (OCD)
Many people are not even aware that there is a problem, until it begins to have a major impact on their lives - separation, illness, loss of friendships or bankruptcy.
Others are fully aware that they have a problem and bury their head in the sand - I think we have all been guilty of this at some time in our lives - I certainly have...
At University I got so used to drinking alcohol to excess most days, (loved a party!!) that I started to long for it and started to think alcohol gave me the confidence to go out and party and be the life and soul people expected me to be. Luckily I caught this belief before it grabbed hold of me fully and became aware of it, which meant I was able to manage it and break the habit that was starting to be created. I still love a party, yet now recognise when I’ve overdone it and refrain from drinking much for a healthy period thereafter.
I also notice other’s weaknesses to regulate the amount they consume, and their excitement at trying to get really drunk when out. This culture is a concern, with many people particularly in the middle classes now drinking too much. Drinking a lot can often be deemed as being the cool kids, the fun ones, the extraverts and basically the social norm. Sound familiar?
So much so, liver cirrhosis is regularly seen by medics in many ‘non-alcoholic’, middle class people unaware of the amount of wine and alcohol they drink daily and over a week. After all, surely a bottle or two shared at the end of the day with your partner, or on your own or out with friends is fine, isn’t it?
But just how often does it really happen?
I think we all can form beliefs that alcohol is perfectly fine, harmless and as long as we don’t wake up craving a drink then we aren’t alcoholics. Yet a drink problem can be much broader than that, yet can still result in the same physical health problems in the end as alcoholics. … This is where the term ‘functioning alcoholics’ comes from. Basically many people just drinking too much, too often, yet still seen to cope by the outside world.
I came across a situation recently where a client found out that her ex husband was told by a therapist that he had been addicted to her! - that although their relationship was not a happy, healthy, fulfilling one, that he relied on her so heavily for his happiness, that it would actually be considered addiction.
It’s important to remember that in order for any relationship to be a healthy, happy one, we need to work on our own health and happiness and never rely on others to give it to us. We have to take responsibility within ourselves and our actions rather than rely on an external source.
My client had remained in this unhealthy, reliant, dependent, relationship for a long time, as seemed easier than confronting it and dealing with it.
Similar to someone attempting to give up alcohol - it’s far easier to keep going, to not face the truth, to not take the perceived hard road that ultimately leads to a happier outcome.
This chart below relates to drugs, but it could relate to any addictions - they are all intertwined with issues that you may be having, either in childhood, at home, social awkwardness, discomfort, self esteem, thrill seeking, relationship problems, emotional, unhappiness or struggling to relax.
This list is endless and varies with every client I see. These limiting beliefs that mentally and emotionally drive us to addiction can be created from something we have taken on as a young child and been unaware of, yet has sabotaged our efforts and choices all through our lives.
- Social withdrawal from family, friends or relationships
- Mood swings
- Feelings of worthlessness
- Change in appearance - Weight gain/loss
- New peer groups
- Short and long term health problems
- Absence - time of work or not turning up to appointments
- …...and many, many MORE
Well, the time to change is Now, if you want to move forward in life and feel good about yourself and therefore happy in your own skin and environment. Surely all you want in life is to ultimately be happy, healthy and feel good, isn’t it?
Don't wait to get a handle on your addictive behaviours. It's a myth that you have to hit rock bottom before you can put your addiction behind you.
- Identifying that you have an addiction is the first step
- Talk to someone - a therapist, councillor or doctor
- Therapies, such as NLP, hypnotherapy, CBT, or mindfulness.
As a Master NLP practitioner, I believe that to successfully overcome an addiction, whether it’s to smoking, food, drugs, booze, social media or sex, you’ll need to program the brain in a different way and improve how you perceive yourself. This is where neuro-linguistic programming (NLP) can help.
If cravings for your addiction are out of control, NLP and Time Line Therapy techniques can install positive triggers for you to use each time a craving occurs.
Should other factors be the cause of your addiction, such as means of escape from stress or anxiety or an unfulfilled life, or deep rooted pathway that supports your habit, then NLP, Time Line Therapy (™) and Therapeutic Hypnotherapy, can help remove the limiting beliefs and negative emotions keeping you stuck and help you set goals that drive you forward to get what you want rather than focusing on what you don’t want. Therefore you achieve what you want rather than what you didn’t want.
These techniques, plus your willingness and motivation to overcome your problem, can prove a powerful way of challenging and overcoming an addiction.
If you would like to find out more and have a confidential, no obligation, free 15 minute phone call with Nicky click on the link below:
And you have the power to change!