The Surprising Cause Of Addiction

Maria HillAyurveda, Diseases, Stress5 Comments

Have you ever wondered what causes addiction? Does it seem sometimes that all around us is one form of addiction or another? Entertainment, shopping, work, the internet, sex, food, drugs, alcohol? The Cause Of Addiction Stress and addiction are actually cause and effect according to Yogi Amrit Desai, founder of Kripalu Yoga. His thinking is explained in  Natural Awakenings, Healing the Root Cause of Addiction with Ayurveda A Natural Cure for Unhealthy Dependence by Linda Sechrist.  According to Yogi Desai in this article, “Addictions are antidotes that provide a temporary escape from the stress- producing, conflict-creating reactions you have about what you are doing, where you are going and who you are with. Addiction, which is only an effect, occurs when you continue to use inappropriate external resources to reduce stress and restore a sense of balance, while failing to resolve the cause of the stress hidden in the unconscious.” The first question this raises is: why does anyone need an antidote to a reaction? are some reactions OK and others not? Have you ever noticed when your feelings and reactions are “corrected” by other people and how that feels?  and what is your reaction to that experience? Problems with reactions and the need to escape them come from a conflict we are unable to resolve. Usually the seeds of addiction are created when we are children.  As children we are stuck not only physically but also emotionally as well. We have to survive in the environment into which we are born. It is that natural need to survive that can get us in trouble because we sometimes have to live with compromises to our worth and dignity that we do not want or deserve. Unfortunately the seeds of addiction can happen innocently. If, as a child, someone were to step on your foot, and … Read More

Uprooting The Seeds Of Addiction: 5 Ideas And 5 Solutions

Maria HillEmotional And Mental Health0 Comments

Addiction is often misunderstood as a weakness of the will when in fact it is more complex than that. Addiction is closely related to stress.  According to Yogi Amrit Desai, founder of Kripalu Yoga, stress and addiction are actually cause and effect as explained in a June, 2010 article in Natural Awakenings, Healing the Root Cause of Addiction with Ayurveda A Natural Cure for Unhealthy Dependence by Linda Sechrist.  Yogi Desai states that, “Addictions are antidotes that provide a temporary escape from the stress- producing, conflict-creating reactions you have about what you are doing, where you are going and who you are with. Addiction, which is only an effect, occurs when you continue to use inappropriate external resources to reduce stress and restore a sense of balance, while failing to resolve the cause of the stress hidden in the unconscious.” Basically then, all addiction comes from a desire to escape some kind of conflict or consequence which raises some important questions: why does anyone need an antidote to a reaction or an escape? how can we live in a way that lets us handle challenges without becoming addicts? Problems with reactions and the need to escape them come from a conflict we are unable to resolve which means that usually the seeds of addiction are created when we are children. As children we have to survive in the environment into which we are born which can cause trouble when we have to live with compromises to our worth and dignity that we do not want or deserve. The seeds of addiction can be magnified in a situation of extreme abuse where the child is not only physically and emotionally harmed but also expected to cover up the abuse for the parents. Children will also cover up abuse to avoid abandonment. If the child must act with … Read More

Stress, Addiction And Weight

Maria HillDiseases, Stress0 Comments

Scientists have been researching the link between stress, cortisol and weight. Because addiction and stress are related, scientists have been wondering if a similar relationship exists between stress and food. The research is showing that people use drugs and food to self-medicate when they are living in situations which pose an extreme threat to the self. The 2007 paper, Stress, eating and the reward system  by Tanja C. Adam, Elissa S. Epel of the University of California, San Francisco, Department of Psychiatry found that not all stressful situations create the conditions that induce an individual to eat or take drugs. Chronic anxiety of the kind that is perceived as a direct threat to the self including situations of embarrassment and social rejection have the greatest potential to result in addiction or stress disorders. Because we all have limits to the amount of pain we can handle and because we cannot be in severe pain and still function, any individual in a situation of chronic extreme stress will seek a way to survive and function. If a change of scenery is not possible, that individual will look for alternatives. If there is so way to change the situation, the individual suffering from severe anxiety will often turn to a substance to handle their pain. In effect they are medicating their distress. Once the individual successfully medicates the anxiety of a negative situation, a feedback loop is activated that reinforces the activity, paving the way to a food or substance addiction. Essentially a reward system has been activated; it effectively anesthetizes the suffering individual and reinforces a negative habit to relieve a negative situation. Highly sensitive people are particularly susceptible to addiction and eating disorders because they are so sensitive to pain both in themselves and others. Their natural empathy makes it more difficult for … Read More

Overcoming The Desire To Take The Easy Way Out

Maria HillEmotional And Mental Health, Personal Development, Stress3 Comments

Do you sometimes take the easy way out? We all do. Have you ever wondered why that is? Have you ever wondered what to do about it? Why Do We Take The Easy Way Out So here’s the deal. We humans all like pleasure. There is nothing wrong with that. When we take the easy way out, it is to feel good. That’s it. When we are taking the easy way out, it means that we are usually harming ourselves in order to get the good feeling we are seeking. The example of someone who has a bad experience and then gets drunk or overeats are classic examples of this. But taking the easy way out does not necessarily have to be this obvious. When Feeling Good Is Taking The Easy Way Out There is nothing wrong with feeling good. There are some important positives to feeling good. One positive is that it can be an indication that we are healthy. Feeling good can tell us when we are doing good work. However, feeling good has a downside: we are conditioned to seek pleasure outside of ourselves. We live in a world of rewards and punishments that engage us even if we do not want them. We have to interact with the world and its existing structure just by being alive. For highly sensitive people, dealing with the challenge around the rewards and punishments we live with can be daunting because they were not designed for us. One of the observable differences between HSPs and non-HSPs is how HSPs have a more internal locus of control whereas non-HSPs are more apt to seek outside rewards. This situation makes feeling good and interacting with the cultural rewards structure difficult for HSPs. When HSPs Take The Easy Way Out Even if we … Read More

Unfreeze Those Feelings!

Maria HillAyurveda, Diseases, Emotional And Mental Health, Energy Healing4 Comments

To a child all feelings may seem huge, since they feel so small – and are. Children are very natural about their feelings. They experience them and let them go. Unfortunately, it does not take long before we learn that our feelings are unwanted and inconvenient. Then we start to reject them and hold them in with all the negative effects that brings. What Happens To Our Feelings? Our feelings become objectified. We learn to treat them like objects at a store, some unwanted and others preferred as demonstrated to us by our families and educators. And so the stress starts. According to Yogi Amrit Desai, founder of Kripalu Yoga in a June, 2010 article in Natural Awakenings, Healing the Root Cause of Addiction with Ayurveda A Natural Cure for Unhealthy Dependence by Linda Sechrist,   “It is important to recognize that most people don’t know the difference between tension and stress… He observes that stressors—thoughts and reactions to our lifestyle, relationships, work environment and family life—are introduced through the ego mind. Emotionally charged thoughts and feelings of blame, shame or guilt then get metabolized into our biological body system. Stored in the form of toxins and neuro-glandular imbalances, these feelings create energy blocks that prevent the free flow of energy, or prana, the body’s self-healing wisdom. Energy blocks may take the form of muscular tensions and weakness in liver, kidney and digestive functions. Gradual decline results in a progressive deterioration of biological processes and consequently can manifest in external symptoms of fatigue, fear, anxiety and insecurity.” Essentially we are socialized to have certain emotions and reject others and our unwanted emotions then get stuck in our bodies and gradually make us sick. Why Rejecting Feelings Is A Mistake When we reject our feelings, we cannot own them and process them. When we are processing our feelings, we … Read More