Addiction is dependent on triggers, those moments filled with uncontrollable, compulsive urges towards a substance or a behavior.
The key to breaking an addiction, and I mean breaking it, not avoiding it, is to understand and uncover the cause each time you are being triggered and then do the internal work to rid yourself of this trigger. This is the same for all dysfunctional behavior and disorder, unless there is a true mental cause and it’s not purely emotional.
The answers to each trigger can be found in differing levels of consciousness. Some are easy to find and concur and some are very deeply hidden within our subconscious. The reason they differ is greatly dependent upon the age the person was when the trauma happened.
What happens when we are triggered is we are reminded of a place and time when emotional pain or fear became trapped. As an example, someone may say something today that is upsetting and you head towards your addiction for comfort. Addiction is really just a method of coping which has been put in place at a time when we didn’t have the tools to understand how to cope healthier ways.
From my own personal experience what I’d advise first is to learn to be very kind to yourself. You are not damaged because you have an addiction. You are very simply a person who is living with trapped painful emotions that need to be cleared. This is a process, there is no instant fix, so when you first start to dissolve this it may seem like you are not making progress and get frustrated, don’t. You can learn to use triggers as your ally; they are actually the key to understanding and breaking your addiction. Below I’ve included an answer that explains a bit more about how triggers are created.
The second thing I’d recommend is to journal and write about how you are feeling. The key to finding the root of what’s triggering you is to find the exact moment you were triggered and then find out why what happened bothered you so much. The more you write and get things out of your head the more room you make to process and release. A trigger can be as simple as someone saying something that reminded you of a painful thing that was said to you as a child.
My example is very extreme. I’ve been my own personal case study on breaking addiction and finding mindfulness. But I did both and I’ve not been happier at any time in my life.
I’m in the process of creating more extensive material to help others understand all I’ve uncovered but until I get this finished I’m happy to chat if anyone has questions.
We all need healing, every last one of us. And we can all learn and grow all throughout our lives. It’s so much easier once you get rid of the emotional baggage!