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Beyond Addictions to Health: It's Not About Will Power

By Dr. Margaret Paul
March 20, 2018

Do you say you want to be healthy but continue to turn to various substance addictions? Do you believe that it's just a matter of will power?

freedom from addictionsAs we all know, many people in our country are suffering from obesity and major health issues. It’s interesting to explore this in terms of intent.

When a person eats too much or eats junk, the intent is to control. The person is using food to suppress pain - to have control over not feeling painful emotions.


Wounded Self: Control Over Avoiding Emotional Pain

While most people would say that their health is important to them, and they might even say that without their health they have nothing, often something else is even more important - having control over avoiding emotional pain.

Health problems can certainly come from a variety of causes other than substance abuse, such as heredity, extreme childhood abuse, polluted air or accidents. But the chronic and degenerative diseases such as cancer, heart disease, diabetes and autoimmune diseases, are often the result of the abuse of food, nicotine, drugs or alcohol.

If a person says he or she wants to be healthy, but continues to eat badly, drink too much, smoke or take dangerous drugs, then obviously the part of this person who is in charge of their choices is more interested in avoiding feelings than in being healthy.

Our wounded self is always more interested in avoiding pain than in loving self-care. This is who the wounded self is - the part of us that wants to have control over feeling safe from pain. One of the reasons that we have such a high rate of obesity and chronic health problems is because, in most people, the wounded self is in charge.

I was a sickly child and I hated being sick. In my early twenties, I discovered the subject of nutrition and began to attempt to eat in a very healthy way. But because I didn't have a loving adult in charge of my eating, eating well was a huge challenge. I would write down everything I ate in the hopes of gaining control over my sugar and carbohydrate addiction. I would go from one diet to another in the hopes of losing weight and staying thin. I went from weight doctor to weight doctor to find the magic pill that would give me control over my weight and health. I would eat well for a while, and then suddenly I would binge on sugar and junk. I just couldn't seem to find the will power to consistently eat well.


Beyond Will Power To True Power

This went on for years, until Spirit brought us Inner Bonding and I began to develop my loving adult. Now I know that a consistent and devoted practice of Inner Bonding will eventually develop enough of a loving adult to truly care more about health than about avoiding pain. Now I know that learning how to manage and learn from painful feelings is the key to weight loss and health.

It is not about will power. The wounded self tries hard to have control by exerting will power, but always eventually fails. It IS about true power - the power of your higher self that comes through when you have a deep intent to learn about what creates health and wellbeing.

Each of us needs to decide which is more important - avoiding pain through our various addictions, or striving for excellent health. When you make the deep decision that creating a healthy body for your beautiful essence to live in is vitally important to you, you will discover the power that comes from Spirit, the power that enables you to let go of substance addictions, eat clean healthy food, and get daily exercise.

Ask yourself now which is more important to you - avoiding pain or creating excellent health? If you find yourself continuing your substance addictions, then you might want to explore why avoiding pain is more important than health and wellbeing.

Join Dr. Margaret Paul for her 30-Day at-home Course: "Love Yourself: An Inner Bonding Experience to Heal Anxiety, Depression, Shame, Addictions and Relationships."

Join IBVillage to connect with others and receive compassionate help and support for learning to love yourself.

Photo by Lechenie-Narkomanii


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Daily Inspiration

When you give from the heart for the joy of giving, you feel filled by the giving and do not feel that anyone owes you anything. When another gives to you from the heart for the joy of giving, you do not feel any sense of obligation or owing. Learning to discern this will enable you to know the difference between giving from the heart and giving to get.


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