Choices take a second, commitment takes a lifetime
Welcome to 2021 everybody!! 2020 is done, we’re here. As I said before: the new year is a new opportunity, but just in the same way that every single moment is a chance for something new. So embrace it, regain your control and keep forging your path. Today we’re talking about breaking addictions.
This came up on an episode of my Podcast, available below, with the incredible life coach and recovery mentor: Adam Jablin.
That episode goes out this Friday at 9:00am (EST)
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We discussed his journey to sobriety, what he learned and how he’s brought so much hope and solace to the lives of others. A huge part of how we break free from addiction, is first identifying what it is!
As Adam points out in the podcast; we can very easily, and quite without intention, slip into excusing away our addictive behaviours. We don’t ask ourselves “what is addiction” yet keep coming back to the same destructive actions.
Breaking an addiction requires awareness and sufficient leverage over ourselves.
Sounds simple doesn’t it? So why do we keep coming back, time and time again, to behaviours that aren’t serving us?
Well, as Adam and I discussed on the show: we’re really looking to fill a gap inside us. Some would call this a ‘God-shaped hole’ – in other words: they’re lacking direction and have allowed themselves to be controlled by something external to themselves.
They’ve checked out!
If you want to know if you are addicted in your own life, having relinquished control and left the driving seat, just ask yourself: what do you find yourself thinking about, when there’s nothing to do?!
Are you sat there with your spouse, or your kids, thinking: “I need to send that email” or “I must remember to book a meeting with X” or “I have to get this project wrapped up by Monday” or whatever? If so, you could well be addicted to work. You might also be addicted to stress, which is a very physical, chemical addiction that can be hugely damaging to your health.
Were we want to get to, ultimately, is self-mastery. That takes time though and it takes patience! This is a journey of self-discovery and you have to see it as that, no matter what it is that you’re addicted to.
It is very easy to slip into a state of denial, when confronting ourselves about our behaviour.
“It’s not that bad, I only drink at weekends and I don’t really need it.”
“I can put my phone away at the weekends and focus on my kids….let me just check hat the weather is doing….oh, I have a FaceBook notification…I’ll just check that and…hmmm what’s she doing in Miami?!”
You get the picture.
We all know the oft quoted definition of insanity: repeating the same action and expecting a different outcome. Well addictions take that further still!
With an addiction we are repeating the same action, knowing that there will be the same outcome and that it’s not one that we want. What we’re really doing is willingly believing a lie! Feigning ignorance and supporting our crappy behaviour.
Why do we do it?
Well some of it is short-termism right? We seek the things that will make us feel good in the moment, even if it’s as a reward for prior good behaviour. We call it ‘letting off steam’ or a ‘blow out’ but these come with such regularity that, over time, the compound effect is destructive.
The trouble is that we are indulging in these addictions to fill our god-shaped hole up, without ever having known what it feels like to be full!
This is a massive problem! We know that we’re missing something, but we don’t know what being complete feels like. We keep going back to the addiction because it’s all we know.
If we were truly complete and fulfilled; we wouldn’t need to keep indulging. We would be afforded the perspective on our behaviour, that all it is doing is keeping us from our potential.
This doesn’t, by the way, simply mean that reaching the top of your chosen career ladder will eradicate addictive behaviour. Lots of Adam’s clients are celebrities and high-achievers, who achieved greatness in their careers, spend every day doing what they love to do, but have ignored other areas of their life.
I’ve spoken about this before, but lots of us see life as a zero-sum game. We think that in order to have career success, we must make sacrifices in our home life. If we want to be rich and successful, we have to spend every waking moment at the coal face, flogging ourselves to death. This just isn’t true!
What Adam finds with a lot of his clients, is that there is a disconnect with life. They have lost that connection with what makes them truly happy in life. They’ve laboured, under the misapprehension, that more success in one area will make them happy.
They’ve abdicated responsibility for their happiness, instead choosing to pin it on achieving a goal.
It’s SO easy to do: allowing yourself to adopt an end goal mentality. Convincing yourself that you’ll be happy on the other side of the hill.
The problem comes when you actually get there and realise that it didn’t work!
It’s also a problem because you’re putting yourself in a space of lack! If we assume that happiness and fulfilment lie on the other side of something, we’re effectively saying that it isn’t with us now. That we’re lacking the means to be happy in the present. This creates a downward spiral and makes it impossible for us to create any kind of abundance.
This is, in a nutshell, what the “God-Shaped” hole is all about. It’s not religious, or anything of that nature. It’s about finding the purpose/life that you’re most aligned with!
I’m sure you’ve had, at least once in your life (but hopefully much more) that moment of alignment.
A situation where you just knew what to do, in order to perfectly execute the desired outcome. Something that draws on your innate skill, intuition and talent, so much so that the task itself feels effortless.
We can find that kind of alignment in our lives every day, if we truly want to.
We can be so in flow with our purpose, that the idea of indulging in an addiction of some kind or another, seems utterly preposterous.
Having gained that leverage over ourselves, the evidence for our subconscious that proves to it that there is something better and that we are worthy of it.
What also comes from this life of alignment is the clarity to identify what our addictions are. With that kind of perspective: why would you ever want to engage in addictive behaviour again?!
If you would like some free guidance and practical tools that you can use to help in breaking addictions, and start sailing towards your dream life: please check out my FREE RESOURCES page. There’s lots there to get you started and for some of you, those may be all you need! So check them out.
Did I mention that they’re free? Cause….they’re free.
We also offer loads more resources and information here in the blog, over on my YouTube channel, my Podcast and my books:Stepping Beyond Intention, The Dreamer’s Manifesto and From Time-to-Time (a really great book on time mastery). All of these are here to serve you and make you part of the journey as well.
For yet more guidance on how to change your internal programming, to attract greater abundance and experience greater freedom: please click on the link below for free access to my…