What does the word addiction even mean?
Addiction for me means depending on a substance.
This dependence does not even need to be a daily dependence.
For example, one can be addicted to alcohol but doesn’t require it daily. One may use it in social events, one may use it to numb ones feelings. One may have no control around alcohol, so when it’s offered or when in an environment where there’s lots of it, one may struggle to say no or will have no self-control to stop after one or two drinks.
Unfortunately during these increasingly pressured and stressful times, I’m seeing more and more people (especially loved ones around me) turning to alcohol because they don’t want to deal with themselves.
They use it to numb out the entrenching pain they’re feeling deep within.
I can relate and I can relate to why they’re doing it. Because I spent alot of my 20’s in this sad and miserable place. There was often many times where I felt that I no longer wanted to even live. This makes me so sad, but you see I didn’t have the tools back then to pull myself out of the darkness.
As many of you know I’m Irish, I grew up in Ireland and left when I was 24 to travel the world with a one year working visa to Australia. I was bored of the drinking scene in Dublin; I was craving change and an outdoor lifestyle (which Ireland couldn’t give me due to the constant rainy weather).
Now I’ll be honest, when I arrived in Australia my binge drinking continued for many years. An illness woke me up and I made the decision that I needed to change many areas of my life and that’s what took me on this path.
Binge drinking in particular is a big problem among the Irish (but also to be fare I’d say it’s quite big over here in Australia too). Binge drinking is the tendency to consume large amounts of alcohol during a very short period of time.
This way of drinking can easily lead to very poor health. Before long, people develop liver damage and disease (some might start with a fatty liver), brain damage and other organ problems. It often leads to alcoholism.
How are addictions formed?
Habit. I believe every addiction comes from a habit formed. It becomes normal practice. It becomes part of your life. I believe the fact that the pub is considered the only social outlet is a huge factor in many people’s drinking problems.
I also believe that many people drink to numb themselves out (I’ve had first hand experience with this one for many years). Alcohol numbs emotional pain: it helps people to disconnect from themselves.
We can numb our self and our emotions in many ways (alcohol isn’t the only way):
- Drinking – needing a glass of wine or two to relax in the evening after a stressful day, binge drinking at the weekend at social gatherings
- Emotional eating
- Watching hours of TV
- Emotional shopping
- Using social media and your phone as a distraction
- Drinking coffee
So when does an addiction become a problem?
It becomes a serious problem when it starts affecting your life, your relationships, your work, your health, productivity etc. (I could go on, the list is endless).
Here’s a little eye opener to how alcohol is absorbed in the body
- 20% of alcohol is absorbed in the stomach
- 80% is absorbed in small intestine
After a few drinks, physical effects of alcohol are apparent, which are related to Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC).
BAC goes up when body is taking in alcohol faster than the body can remove it.
- 10% is removed by kidneys (urine) and lungs (breath)
- Liver metabolizes remainder
Our poor liver is left to metabolise the rest, that’s a lot for our liver to handle isn’t it? So no wonder liver disease occurs.
How to tackle your addiction?
- The very first step to create any form of positive change is awareness. You need to be aware and see that you have a problem.
- Do you want to change? Do you want to do something about it? Do you even see it as an issue (perhaps others are telling you it is, but what about you)?
- Are you willing to look honestly and deeply at the emotions and feelings you’ve been numbing out? This takes a lot of courage and you may need to seek the guidance of a mentor/coach/counscellor.
- Recognise and know that there’s no quick fix here. There’s no magic pill you can take. You’re going to have to get very comfortable with all those uncomfortable emotions and feelings you’ve been avoiding. But this is where transformation and true healing occurs.
- Start practicing Kundalini Yoga. Kundlaini Yoga is esentially a program of recovery.The exercises (kriyas) were specifically taught to build discipline, overcome conscious and unconscious blocks, and develop an overall sense of physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being. There are many many Kundalini Meditations you can do as a 40 day practice (or even longer) to tackle your addiction.
We have a very short time on this planet earth. Life is too short to be ruining it with self-medicating and numbing yourself out. This is not living. This is waiting to die.
If you’d like to book in a 20 min complimentary chat with me to see how I can help you, you can go ahead and do so here lovely.
Are you struggling with an addiction right now? What’s been helping you? Please share with us in the comments below.
Love and Light,
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