I Can’t Stop Using Drug and/or Alcohol

Powerlessness is a central part of addiction. Trying to quit, and failing is a characteristic of addiction. If you can quit (and not just for a few days or weeks) then you are not chemical dependency. People who seek drug or alcohol treatment have tried and failed to quit dozens of times already. Why are they unable to quit? Why are some addiction treatment centers effective, and others are not? When you have failed to quit, it is easy to become demoralized. Recovery is a frustrating process. But there is hope. The key is in the unconscious. This is what holistic treatment really means. It is treating the whole psyche.

Why I can’t stop using?

People think they have more control than they actually have. They believe they are logical rational individuals that can consider their options and make choices. Unfortunately, this just is not true. We have known this isn’t true for centuries. Modern research is proving this in the lab. People have multiple “selves”, “drives”, “personas”, “systems”. These conflicting selves each compete to get their needs met.

For example, you get home from a working a double shift working retail. You have been on your feet all day and need a shower. You skipped lunch and haven’t eaten dinner yet. Now, do you eat or shower first?

This is how the human mind works. In order to make decisions, we have to decide what we value more. For most people, they are unaware of this decision process. It happens in the unconscious. The decision for sobriety happens when a person weathers a craving. In order to make this shift, their craving self needs to be considered.

Many people decide to sign up for a gym membership after the new year. They plan to wake up an hour early before work to exercise. But when their alarm goes off, they cannot motivate to get themselves out of bed. They underestimated the value of sleep at 6 am. People chronically underestimate they value of their emotions. Research clearly shows these emotions are the driving force for many of our actions

The key is not the plan to stay sober or go to the gym. The key is what happens when you stay sober or go to the gym when it is difficult. It is in the action. During bad treatment, a logical plan is created for sobriety. Therapists give worksheets identifying triggers to fill out. They have the client list all the reasons drugs are harmful. They completely ignore the reason the person is using drugs. Consequently, their clients are unprepared to face a craving outside of treatment.