Express Yourself

About anything and everything on the planet

February 27, 2008

Addiction: Why We Choose Habits To Mask Our Pain

A dictionary definition of addiction is behavior that is routinely acted out in a habitual manner- whether it’s compulsive, subtle, conscious or unconscious.

When we hear the word addiction or addictive behaviors, we incorrectly presume drugs, alcohol, or smoking. Sure these are addictive in nature but so is sex, eating, talking, lying, manipulating, or being greedy or depressive- essentially anything that consumes our ability to stop and fully think about the action we are about to take. Because if we thought about the consequences but moreso the intent of the action itself, the very recognition would steer us away from our ritualistic behaviors and patterns and into a conscious way of living.

The title of this article still remains; “Why do we choose habits that mask our pain?”The obvious answer is that we cannot deal with our own discomforts, so we find external distractions to bury our attention in. But what I am searching for is the underlying cause- what do we benefit from when we mask our issues with addictive behaviors? What exactly do we gain?

I personally know that when I used to smoke cigarettes I had tricked myself into believing that smoking actually did something satisfying for me, yet I realized in the end the illusion I was dwelling in.I had chosen to use cigarettes as a means of sedating my emotional dysfunction. It was only when I quit, after 10 years of masking my problems with an external crutch that I realized how much I had been avoiding my problems.

This is just one of the many personal examples of mine in which I used an addictive behavior to mask the issues going on in my life.I also learned that it takes a lot of courage to truthfully admit to your flaws- but in the end it’s much better to recognize it earlier on that when it gets to a more difficult stage to break the cycle.

As diverse as all our own habits are, we all share the same root cause for masking our issues in the first place- the only difference is in how we choose to mask them.

When we deal with past pains and hardships that are intense and often draining, we want to look the other way- get our minds off the matter. Sometimes it’s necessary to take your mind off really heavy issues for a bit, just so you can breath. The problem is when you choose to fully ignore the situation and cover it up with an addictive behavior. Yet we all do this to some extent or another.

Whether we break up with someone and eat all the ice cream we can wallow in, as a means of taking the edge off or turning to addictive relationships as a means of suppressing a horrible childhood memories- the list is endless. But what I would like to point out is that, addictive behaviors do not fall into one category of drugs, alcohol, eating and smoking- but they span and interconnect into a diverse array of psychological behaviors that affect us physically, emotionally and mentally.

Often the hardest part about addiction is admitting that you have a problem, the second hardest part is the initial step to break it and the third hardest part is enduring the process of staying clean- whatever that may entail.

The truth of the matter remains is that we all have issues that need healing and resolving. It’s often simpler to mask the problem than to deal with it, but it is necessary we look at ourselves truthfully, no matter how hard that may be.

When we break our own tangled webs of confusion, we unleash a threshold of clarity that opens us to a new awareness never tasted before- and that is the freedom from our own habitual addictions. 

Written By: Jennifer Kunlire aka Truth Whisphers

Similar Posts:

1 Comment(s)

  1. Karen Halls | Feb 27, 2008 | Reply

    I found your site on google blog search and read a few of your other posts. Keep up the good work. Just added your RSS feed to my feed reader. Look forward to reading more from you.

    Karen Halls

Post a Comment