Ever wonder where irrational thinking comes from? You know, the type of thinking that can be negative or harmful. I mean, when it comes to addiction, what really makes it become the deceptive friend that it pretends to be?
I’ve thought of this topic a lot over the years because I really wanted to know how I became a willing slave to myself. I know how it started but to know how we build our addiction is to know the inner workings of our own mind and yes, how that mind can transform what we believed to be our world into something completely different.
The first thing that comes to mind when thinking these thoughts is the reality that we had to work to create our addictions. We weren’t born with an all consuming desire to smoke. No, in the beginning we had to create that desire with the help of our dopamine receptors which are impacted by our smoking to help us to create the fantasy that what we’re doing is “pleasant”.
Over time we begin to accept that smoking is a normal part of our lives and we slowly forget what really is normal. At first we think about the known damages to our bodies that smoking causes as we continue to create this chemical pleasure within ourselves by creating more damage. I think there were times in the beginning of my addiction when my rational thinking would surface and I’d have to change that thinking by making excuses for my actions.
I’d think of the pleasure that smoking brought me, smothering my thoughts of reality. Over time I’d told myself of the pleasure so often that this became my reality. Thoughts of freedom and health were swept away by my desire to keep my world pleasant, even as I continued damaging myself.
When someone challenged my addiction, it would create an instant intense anger within me. I’d blurt out all of the excuses that I’d used to create my addiction; All of the thoughts that kept me enslaved, never realizing that the non addicted person I’d be talking to found what I was saying to be totally irrational thinking, and the reality is that it was!
I could write an entire book out of my personal discoveries, but that’s not really what this blog is about. The point that I’m really trying to get at is the fact that when we created the condition of addiction within ourselves, it took time and it actually took a lot of effort if you think about it. Changing our perception of our own reality isn’t easy to do and yet as addicts, we’re experts at it!
This is the basis of the fear of change I think. The part that makes us fear life without the comfort of the thoughts we’ve created for so long. Over time, we lose our memories of the past when we weren’t enslaved and the enslavement becomes what we consider to be normal.
I call these thoughts the tentacles of addiction. I see them that way because those irrational thoughts slither their way into the very core of our beings, every day becoming more and more entrenched.
When I quit, I would see myself pulling each of these out of me one by one as I mastered the reality of freedom. Each negative thought that I’d created in order to remain addicted had to be dealt with and transformed into a new positive thought.
That’s why quitting is a process. It took us a long time to create our addicted reality and as such it takes time to replace it. That’s why “one day at a time” or “one step at a time” has to be our mantra as we fight to be free! We must remain proud of each achievement we make as we change our world, and we must remain vigilant.
As we remove our irrational thoughts one by one and then move onto the next, we slowly start to see the reality that once was. We slowly discover that there really was no pleasure in our slavery. No, we created that illusion for ourselves. We learn that there’s so much happiness in our lives and that this happiness has nothing to do with a modified plant and then one day when all the tentacles are removed, we realize that we’re free. We see life the way we were meant to see it on that day we were born. So much peace and yes, a happiness that comes from within and never again has to be created for us!
ONWARD TO FREEDOM!!!