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Overcome Addiction
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Overcome Addiction

Addiction is defined by the Merriam-Webster dictionary as a "quality or state of being addicted" and also as the "compulsive need for and use of a habit-forming substance" that is also characterized by "tolerance and well-defined physiological symptoms upon withdrawal." It is a constant and persistent use of substances or activities known by the user to be harmful.

But how do you know when you are addicted to something? Can you self define yourself as being addicted? Or does someone else have to identify that you have an addiction?

I would suggest that addiction can be determined either internally or externally. If you see a pattern happening in your life that is becoming harmful, then you have recognized it internally. It could be that you find yourself drinking way too much coffee. The effects of the caffiene are keeping you awake at night and impacting your work the next day. There could even be irritability associated with the lack of sleep or a decrease in productivity.

If you find those things going on, you have the ability and choice to decide that coffee or the caffiene has become an addiction. What you do about it from this point forward is also a choice to be made.

There are others that never see the impact of an addication upon their life. The most popular addiction in this category is drug and alcohol abuse. I am always amazed at how we define these categories. Drugs, alcohol, cigarette use and prescription drugs are all drugs in different forms. We tend to separate them into different categories to satisfy our need to classify the severity of each. Abuse of any one of these can have the same devastating effects regardless of how you classify them.

The problem with these types of addictions in the drug classification is that internally our mind is clouded by reason. The addiction has consumed all reason or ability to ascertain the harmfulness of what we are doing to ourselves and those around us. In this particular case, it requires the determined ability of others to identify for us that addiction has taken over our life.

The problem though with addiction is that once it is identified, it can not be fixed by others. Most certainly professionals, friends and counselors can assist, but overcoming an addiction takes place inside. We have to want to end the addiction and be willing to make a change in our life to overcome it. We would like to have a switch that we can turn off or have someone else turn off if we can not find it. But addiction is not a switch to be turned on or off.

Addiction normal grows over time, like a weed that slowly begins to take over a garden. You may see only one or two in a field of beautiful flowers, but if you don't get rid of it soon, the weeds eventually overcome the flowers. Your life becomes consumed by the addiction over time and it is over time that you will rid yourself of it. But you have to be the person weeding your life of addiction with the help of others guiding you along the way.

I am sure that addiction in one form or another has touched everyone reading this. You may have seen it coming and turned it around quickly. You may have had a full blown addiction that required an intervention and help from others. Don't be ashamed by the addiction because that is its power over you. Shame forces you to stay in the dark and hide. Bring light to your problem and the light will begin to destroy the addiction. But regardless, you must know that addiction can be overcome.

There is life, a great life, after addiction waiting for you should you choose to overcome. I am not a professional in this area, but I encourage you to seek out those that can help you where a professional is needed. But also know that I am a person that cares about you and your well being. I will cheer you on and encourage you to overcome. There are other people in your life that care just as much and more for you. Let them be a positive force in life and not enablers. They can help you get to the other side, a side that has great things waiting for you. They are people that love you and define what their love is for you.

Stay inspired my friends and have a great life, your best life.

Street Talk

Joseph I find your article interesting and stimulating. Although I'm only a 3 cup a day coffee drinker it was always a joke with my friends about my obsession with it. Recently I had an amazing experience during a kineseology session that removed the 'feeling' that I carried that was driving me to get the next coffee. I'm still drinking 3 a day but no longer have that feeling and it's very tangible and bizarre. I think the research of what is the underlying support for addictions would be very revealing. Makes me curious. Thanks for a great article!

  about 1 decade ago
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