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Recovery From Addictions, Part 5

By Dr. Margaret Paul
December 31, 2006



In this final part of a 5-part series on recovery from addictions, I address the way out of addictions.



In Part 1 of this series of articles, I defined substance and process addictions, and described the four major false beliefs that underlie most addictions:

  1. I can't handle my pain.
  2. I am unworthy and unlovable.
  3. Others are my source of love.
  4. I can have control over how others feel about me and treat me.

In Parts 2,3 and 4, I explored in depth each of these false beliefs and how they contribute to addictive behavior. In this final part of this series, I address the way out of addictions.

 

Recovery from addictions is based on two major shifts in your thinking and behavior:

  • Shifting your intention from avoiding repsonsibility for your feelilngs to learing about loving yourself. This means shifting from your ego wounded self having dominion over your choices to your loving adult having dominion over your choices.
     
  • Learning to access your personal spiritual Guidance so that you can fill yourself with the unconditional love and compassion of Spirit rather than turning to addictions to fill the emptiness and take away the pain.

As long as getting love and avoiding pain is your highest priority, you will not be able to recover from your addictions. When you decide that being loving to yourself and others is your highest priority, you are on your way to healing from your addictive behavior.

 

Your intent is everything - it completely determines your actions and the resulting outcome.

If your intent is to get love and avoid pain in order to feel safe, you will continue to resort to addictive behaviors as a way of trying to have control over getting love and avoiding pain.

When your intent is to be on the spiritual path of evolving in love and fully manifesting yourself, then you will bring the Six-Step Inner Bonding process into your life throughout the day.

  1. You will stay tuned into your feelings throughout the day so that you know the minute you feel anything other than peace inside. You will be present within your body with your feelings, just as you would be present to the feelings of a baby if you wanted to be a loving parent, with a desire to take responsibility for them.
     
  2. You will immediately move into a compassionate intention to learn about what you are thinking or doing that is causing your distressing feelings of anger, fear, anxiety, depression, hurt, guilt, shame, stress, emptiness, aloneness, jealousy, and so on. You will access your loving adult by opening to your spiritual Guidance - the wise and loving presence that is always here for you - inviting that love and wisdom to come into your heart.
     
  3. You will explore with your inner child - your feeling self - what you are thinking, doing, or believing that is causing the distress. You will explore with your wounded self the false beliefs and
    resulting unloving behavior that are causing your pain.
     
  4. You will open to learning with your spiritual Guidance, asking "What is the truth about these beliefs?" and "What is the loving action?" You will allow the answers to these questions to come when they will, not trying to control the process.
     
  5. You will take the loving action you are guided to take, which can take many different forms - from lovingly holding your inner child, to getting more exercise and eating better, to speaking your truth or moving into compassion with someone else.
     
  6. You will evaluate your actions to see how you feel now. If you are not feeling better, you will seek another loving action until you feel peaceful within.
     

If you do these steps each time you feel any distress instead of turning to your habitual addictions, you will gradually move beyond addictive behavior.

You always have these two choices regarding your intent - to control or to learn. You, and only you, are in charge of which of these you choose moment-by monent. If you do not consciously choose the intent to learn about loving yourself, you will unconsciously and automatically choose to try to have control over getting love and avoiding pain through your addictive behavior.

Choosing the intent to learn about loving yourself and practicing Inner Bonding throughout the day is a powerful path to becoming addiction-free. Joining our Inner Bonding membership community provides the support you need to heal your addictions.

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."



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