Addiction is an attempt to solve the problem of pain. While it provides temporary relief or pleasure, it is also accompanied by negative consequences and it is difficult to give it up.
How addiction counselling helps
The definition of addiction is the continual, repeated use of something despite negative consequences. Addiction counseling helps people get more conscious about who they are and what they want to let go of, especially the things that are hurting them.
Addiction recovery is more than just stopping. It’s more than abstinence. It’s more than no longer using whatever substance or activity is numbing the pain.
It’s about understanding the root cause of the pain; healing and developing healthier coping strategies. Our addictions provide us with something, often a way to numb or avoid a part of our lives that feels unmanageable. When we can name those things, we can move forward with compassion.
For example, someone who overeats or drinks excessively might achieve a sort of peace and calm while they’re doing so, and that can become a familiar, comfortable way to numb or avoid uncomfortable or painful thoughts, feelings and experiences.
Addictions to overwork or people-pleasing (codependence) can both be attempts to deal with feeling not good enough. In counselling, we address ways to feel good enough, without the need for the sense of accomplishment that they’re getting from abusing themselves with overwork or burning out attempting to make everyone else happy.
If you would like support with your addiction, your counsellor will support you with empathy and compassion to find alternative ways to deal with your pain without the use of the addictive substance or activity.