by Marcus Antebi
Article at a Glance:
Think about the moment that happens right before a relapse. Then think about the days of the week that lead up to that moment.
If we relapsed it was because we didn’t allow ourselves to step into a new reality of being liberated from suffering. We didn’t fully embrace the new lifestyle. We didn’t have enough tasks to do every day to keep us from using substances to escape pain, having false perceptions of the world, or getting overcome with anxiety.
It’s likely that we used other types of addictions to keep the gateway wide open for us to eventually fall back into negative patterns. We can become addicted to anything in the cosmos—not only to things such as drugs, alcohol, and the like. Human beings will very quickly become addicted to anything that makes them feel good.
By this I don’t mean that we will become addicted to drinking water or breathing air. These and other things are behavior patterns that are necessary for survival. But addictions drive us to things that bring us pleasure, comfort, or safety in ways that are not in our best interests. We become addicted to the behavior patterns that give us the impression of control and safety although we deceive ourselves about the costs they exact on our physical and mental health and wellness.
Prior to our addictions flaring up and manifesting themselves in our behaviors, something happens in our mind that is very predictable and it occurs through a linear process. The addiction is triggered and the behavior process of relapse then begins. We lead ourselves step-by-step emotionally and physically to the actual relapse and then we get back into the destructive cycle of addiction. Hopefully it comes to an end, though. If we reach another bottom, we can make another set of commitments. We can stop the behavior at that point.
We can relapse, go through all of the struggles, waste time, and put our health and sometimes even our lives at risk. But a far better option is to discover what work we need to do to overcome the obsessions and disorders in our ways of thinking before those relapses begin.
The work that a person will need to do to overcome addiction will be slightly different for each addiction and for each personality type. But there are beginning steps that anyone wishing to rid themselves of an addiction will need to take. First and foremost is the need to reach an emotional bottom of some kind.
How do you physically do that? Begin by sitting quietly with yourself and thinking of all the different things that you’re doing in connection with an addiction or an addictive behavior. Check in with your feelings. It may not be easy to do that. But your feelings might be powerful enough to push through all your denials, your fears, and your cloudy confusion.
You have to have the capacity to be honest with yourself. That can be very difficult. Being honest with yourself or you won’t be able to see what it is that you’re doing. Look at your life and your patterns carefully and say to yourself, “I’ve had enough. I don’t like what I’m doing and I want to change.”
Doing this is hardest for those who have never had anything better to compare themselves to. Or they may have become so habituated to a particular behavior for so long that they just can’t see that they have a problem. Such people just haven’t reached the physical bottoms of their addictions yet.
A person about to reach the bottom is often terrified. They feel that way because the suffering is so great but they’re still afraid of change. They’re afraid to fail, they’re afraid to be in pain, and they’re afraid to be without their substance or their behavior pattern.
Perhaps this describes your situation. Do you want to get through these issues? Then you’ve got to pray. Prayer is such an easy practice. You don’t have to know anything about it. You don’t even necessarily have to believe in anything. You just have to put your hands together, get on your hands and knees, and do it.
Pray to be lifted. Pray for power. Pray for solutions. Pray for clarity of the mind. But don’t pray for money. Don’t pray for gifts. Don’t pray for rewards. Instead, pray to the highest aspect of yourself to arise and change your circumstances once and for all. Pray old school if you like, kneeling by the side of your bed looking skyward with your hands clasped together as you ask for help.
I’m not telling you to pray to God if you don’t wish to. I’m not telling you to believe in God if you don’t wish to. I’m telling you over and over again to pray to your higher self and your super consciousness. If you believe in God, though, by all means pray to God.
Be advised that there is power within you and power outside of you. The power inside of you now is connected to your higher nature and seeks to overcome the lower nature that drives your cravings. Allow your higher nature to overcome the lower nature. You can do it!