Realities of Addiction

For someone struggling with addictions, their life has become unmanageable as a result of the activity or substance and in spite of the negative consequences, the person continues to participate in the activity or use of the substance.


In some situations the individual has experienced trauma and abuse resulting in buried emotions. It is these emotions that have created anxiety, stress, and pain leaving the person feeling isolated, angry and desperate.  Addictions offers a way to numb the feelings, to escape.


There are four factors that can create addictions:

  1. Biological - such as a genetic predisposition or brain chemistry
  2. Psychological - an emotional need or trauma that necessitates the desire to create a numbing state
  3. Sociological - the accessibility, social groups, acceptance and even the culture of the time
  4. Spiritual - individuals walk through life with the focus on themselves and spirituality looks at what life demands out of me (what can I give back).

Addictions is about making a person feel better, i.e. how can this substance or this activity make me feel good. Addictions becomes about living in a state of wanting, having self pity and focusing on oneself. 


Do you have an addiction?

Answer the following questions honestly to find out for yourself.

Can I set limits?
Can I maintain control?
Do I plan my days and energy around my habit?
Does my habit become the focus?
Are bad things happening to me as a result of this habit?
In spite of these problems do I continue with my habit anyhow? 



Recovery is not a one time event or as a result of fortune or good luck. Recovery is a major process of psychological, social and spiritual adjustment.  This process can be filled with growth while tackling emotional obstacles, barriers about self and feelings of hopelessness. Many people struggle at first while in recovery but with the right strategies and support they will find hope, a sense of balance and the courage to move forward.  It is about learning an entirely new lifestyle of recovery and living.  It is about change and possibilities.



Wellness Wheel Model

Developed by C. Patterson-Sterling

The Wellness Wheel Model examines an individual's life from many perspectives. Having a healthy and balanced life can mean wellness to the individual. In counselling, the individual struggling with addictions can work through these areas of their lives to find balance, hope, and fulfillment.

Emotional wellness is about keeping a positive attitude, learning to cope with stress and taking responsibility for your own behaviour.


Social wellness is being comfortable with yourself and interacting easily with others while developing friendships.


Legacy wellness is what a person is remembered for or what they have left behind that is honoured or has an impact now and in the future.

Relationship wellness is about building up and caring for those relationships you have with your family and friends.


Intellectual wellness can focus on what things or activities can keep you challenged and learning while listening and observing the world around you.


Spiritual wellness is spending time in personal reflection, participating in spiritual activities and caring about the well being of others and making it happen.


Occupational wellness is finding satisfaction and value in your work while recognizing opportunities that can lead you to develop as a individual.






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