Habit or Addiction?
"Addiction" has almost become a clich�. "I'm addicted to strawberry yogurt. I'm hooked on Facebook. I'm addicted to him or her. I always have a beer or glass of vino at dinner." Are our daily routines "addictions?"
The expression "We are creatures of habit" is accurate. Routines are our customary or regular span of procedure. They are our commonplace tasks, chores, or duties we frequently enact. They are typical of our everyday activities. Moreover, they normally are unvarying, habitual, unimaginative, and rote. I rise on automatic pilot when I get up, boil water for coffee with my coveted cup, grind coffee beans (medium roast) and add sweetener, creamer, and whipped cream. I don't want to think! I engage cruise control as I tilt the first sip. Effective routines enables us to become more effective, efficient, and expedient.
I habitually brush my teeth after breakfast, but don't obsess about this while i rise from the bed. Easily forget, I would not succumb to withdrawal down the road. This is a habit.
Does somebody who always has a beer or glass of wine simply repeat a routine or, given alcohol's psycho-active properties, placate a dependancy? Probably not-unless the beer is a liter or the "glass" of vino is poured in quart-sized soda glass. Quantity matters!
Obsession Phrases PDF
This illustration should assist in anyone discerning habit vs. addiction. There exists a predictable sequence not only linear but tragically, cyclical:
Trigger-stimulus ? Desire, impulse, obsession, craving ? Preparation-seeking ritual ? Compulsive behavior and increasing tolerance ? Negative consequences (work, family, legal, economic etc.) ? guilt, regret, remorse, frustration, anger, relief (sometimes withdrawal after stopping) ? Trigger-stimulus. "One won't hurt."
Around and around the cycle rotates, but better put, it's more of a spiral because the person's life deteriorates and functioning is impaired. The important thing factors of addiction are obsession, ritual, compulsion and problems.
I used to play hearts and spades within my computer. I liked the frenzy as I anticipated of playing, and that i had to win-no matter how many games it took. When over a losing streak I'd blurt "F--- it" and storm out of the room. No problem, right? No, Irrrve never gambled on-line and lost my checking account. But I fit the addictive cycle: I obsessed after i would play, seeked and engaged the ritual every day, felt the rush as hearts and spades lighted and I vied against cyber opponents, and felt relief if I won. This may seem absurd to you personally, but I had some mild addictive elements. I decided through God's influence to finally stop. You know what? Deliverance. Or in AA's phrase "restore us to sanity."
AA has it as soon as they call alcoholism insanity, which includes tobacco, other drugs or combinations ingested. Inevitably, health and medical problems shall emerge. Behavioral addictions may include work, exercise, sex, romance, co-dependency, gambling, Internet compulsions and whatever activity causes the addictive cycle described above.
Addiction is hell on earth. Theologically, addiction is idolatry. The choices are simple: stop and stay stopped. Permanently. If despite sincere desire and multiple efforts to stop, swallow your pride and obtain help ASAP. You deserve better.
By the way, I shall ready my coffee ritual tomorrow morning.
"Habit vs. Addiction" simply supplies the reader a means to separate common daily routines, habits and unconscious behaviors and predictable signs or symptoms indicating a bio-psychosocial attachment to some psychoactive substance or incessant, compulsive behavior.