• Erica Green

Reaction vs. Reflection: Addiction?


After so much time at home, some have found themselves pulled to their impulses, compulsions, and shadowy mental spaces. It has been more difficult to fight the urges to eat when not hungry, to smoke after quitting, hard to avoid alcohol for self entertainment, and abuse substances they have never abused before. Some fight the term of addiction because they feel they can stop the behavior at any time. Can they? Sure they could, but they fail to see that these urges are consuming their lives by dominating their thoughts, plans, and relationships with people. Overtime, this obsessions begin first thing in the morning, becomes the plus one for events if they appear at the event at all. It becomes their most important relationship. If you identify this with them, it meets anger. How can one step out of this cycle?

As many can attest, it can take years to break the cycle of reacting to impulses as it took years to form. However, there are some things that make the road more clear. If we think about when we are most tempted by urges, we might find a mood connected. Bored? Celebration? Sad? Lonely? When growing up, we learned to accompany these feelings with something, maybe food. When our anxiety is up and there is no positive way to re-direct we get caught into a quick feel better behavior, which might be harmful later. To break this cycle, a pause can help. The pause can allow us to delay an impulsive action and reflect on a better healthier option. Some can learn to delay and delay some more, until the urge subsides. Health wins.

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