The Nature of Addiction



We can be addicted to anything. Food, television, work, exercise, cigarettes, drugs and alcohol are some of the most discussed addictions, but habits like “judging other people” or “being too critical” also qualify as addiction.

Do any of those feel familiar?

Modern addictions such as constantly checking social media or email can be just as difficult to manage. These habits are challenging to overcome because the truth is that addictions do a couple of things for us.

First, they give us an excuse for why we haven’t done more or why we’re not dealing with a particular issue. They’re an “out” that keeps us from fully engaging with our thoughts and more importantly, our emotions.

Addictions help us avoid potentially life-changing thoughts like, “This isn’t the relationship I’m supposed to be in. My heart doesn’t feel engaged,” or “I am scared to really throw myself into my business because… what if it doesn’t work out?”

The addiction distracts us. We think it’s a buffer between us and the world, but it’s really a buffer between us and ourselves. Between us and our fears, our own pain and our own sorrow.

Addiction Helps Us Cope with Extreme Emotion

When someone in my family experienced the death of a child, there was a long period of alcohol and romance novels. That’s not at all to blame her! The loss of a child can be devastating to a parent. Her pain was so great that she couldn’t face it without being overwhelmed by it.

We all have pain from the past. And the question is, “How long do we want to live from that pain and have that pain be what’s creating our now?

On the other side of the spectrum, addictions help us when we become intimidated by our own power.

We all say, “I want to be more empowered. I want more personal power in the world.” But being empowered can be uncomfortable and it can mean making drastic changes in our lives.

We Grow from the Discomfort

So often, we want life to get better in a very comfortable, predictable and safe way. If you want your business to get better, it might mean releasing clients who aren’t a good fit or letting go of an income stream or a team member – and those things can be really uncomfortable!

And so, we say we want change… just not the uncomfortable stuff!

Addictions are a way of slowing down our own progress so we don’t have to go to that really uncomfortable place, the place where the big changes really would occur.

SA_Twitter_IconTweet: Addictions keep us from fully engaging with our thoughts and more importantly, our emotions.

Daily practices can make a difference in facing our addictions and choosing a different path. Doing regular clearings where we let go of our fears and our junk from the past so that we’re not trying to avoid things can make this day-to-day journey more clear.

Getting support from others and creating accountability is another way to move forward more quickly. It’s so easy to let ourselves off the hook for not exercising today or not getting the work done we intended to do. But when we have to show up in front of someone else and admit, “Ooh, I didn’t do it!” that’s much more incentive to hunker down and get it done!

Are you ready to create a support and accountability system for yourself? My Wealth School group program is already underway, but if you sign up to be on the first-to-know list, you’ll get advanced notice when I offer it again next spring. Sign up here.  If you want to explore working with me one-on-one to dissolve your money muck, sign up for a discovery call with me and we’ll chat soon.

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