An addiction is an unhealthy obsession with something. It’s something you can’t stop thinking about or doing, even though you know it’s not good for you. Most people think of drugs and alcohol when they hear the word addiction. But it is possible to be addicted to all kinds of things. Addictive behavior damages your body and mind. Usually, addictions give you a temporary high, followed by periods of profound sadness or despair. There are treatments out there to help, but there are also some effective self-help techniques you may wish to try.
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Addictions vary from one individual to another. Some addictions, such as heroin addiction, are incredibly dangerous and potentially life-threatening. Others, such as addiction to exercise or shopping, for example, may seem less serious. But they may have harmful implications for your health and wellbeing and your relationships with others. The nature and severity of an addiction usually dictate the treatment pathway. A severe drug addiction will usually be treated differently to a gambling addiction, for example.
Whatever the addiction, it’s often possible to employ self-help techniques. These methods can be used alongside conventional medical treatments and therapies. Here are some examples, which may aid addiction recovery.
Exercise is often recommended for those struggling with mental health disorders. It has a host of benefits for your body, but it also clears your mind and distracts you from negative thoughts. You can channel anger and frustration in a positive way and burn off excess energy. Working out can also encourage you to be more sociable and set new targets and goals. You may find that once you start exercising, you become more ambitious and confident. You may also find that you start to prioritize your health over other things, including your addiction.
Changes in routine
Addictions usually take over your life. Before you know it, you’ve adopted a routine, which revolves around having a drink or smoking a joint. Try to break the routine as quickly as possible. Keep yourself busy and avoid seeing people who you usually smoke, drink or take drugs with. Reach out to old friends and spend more time with your family. Distract your mind, so that you’re not constantly thinking about your next hit. Try to avoid places you usually go to take drugs or drink.
It can be tough to think positively when you’re battling an addiction, but you can change your mindset with the right support. Talking therapies, such as cognitive behavioral therapy, encourage you to change the way you think. This enables you to cope with difficult situations more effectively. Your therapist can be very helpful, but you can also aid your own recovery. If you think that you’re going to fail, and you’re giving up before you’ve even started, it’s unlikely that you’ll beat your addiction. If you think positively, and you have that goal in your mind, there’s a much higher chance of success.
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Often, self-help techniques won’t be sufficient to help you beat an addiction, but they can be hugely beneficial. If you are worried that you’re addicted to something, don’t hesitate to seek help. See your doctor, get in touch with a charity or speak to a loved one. Taking the first step is the most important milestone on the road to recovery.