How to Change Addictive Thinking

How To Change Addictive Thinking

In order to understand how to change addictive thinking, we must first understand the psychological nature of addiction. This condition extends far beyond the physical dependencies that often come to mind; it is deeply rooted in the ways we process thoughts, emotions, and experiences. Addiction hijacks the brain’s reward system, leading individuals to seek out substances or behaviors that provide temporary relief or pleasure, often at the expense of long-term wellbeing. By examining the underlying cognitive patterns and emotional triggers that contribute to addictive behaviors, we can begin to unravel the complex web of addiction. This understanding lays the groundwork for developing effective strategies to alter these entrenched thought processes, ultimately paving the way for recovery and healing. Through this lens, we see that changing addictive thinking isn’t just about breaking a habit; it’s about transforming one’s entire outlook on life, one thought at a time.

What Are Addictive Thought Patterns?

People caught in addictive behaviors and ongoing substance abuse often face formidable challenges. Despite the difficulties, some may hold onto the belief that addiction is something they can overcome gradually, akin to a myth. However, grappling with various addictive thought patterns can make the process exceptionally tough. Chemical alterations in the brain trigger sensations of euphoria, fueling both psychological and physical cravings that perpetuate addictive behaviors. These patterns commonly observed in addicts include:

  • Increase in stress levels
  • Fearing one’s exposure to public
  • Blaming others for negative feelings
  • Impulsive behavior
  • Always seeks pleasure
  • Less societal outlook
  • Deviance
How to Change Addictive Thinking
Patterns of Addictive thinking

Patterns Of Addictive Thinking

These patterns will help you understand how to change addictive thinking. They are supported by five critical mechanisms: denial, selfishness, irrationality, conditions, and victim mentality.

1. Denial

When someone refuses to acknowledge the reality of their situation, it’s called denial. Denial involves downplaying substance use and avoiding the truth about having an addiction. For many addicts, this can seem like an easier way to cope, as it helps them avoid confronting feelings of guilt or regret. Additionally, denial can perpetuate substance abuse because individuals may convince themselves of the following beliefs:

  • ‘I don’t drink during the day.’
  • ‘I have had a hard day.’
  • ‘It eases the pain.’

2. Selfishness

Distraction from being absorbed by one’s thoughts and emotions defines selfishness. People who recover from substance addiction tend to go back to addiction because they can think:

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  • ‘I don’t have a problem if I can stop for a month.’
  • ‘Since I know how to handle myself, I can’t return to the same patterns.’

3. Irrationality

This means making abrupt decisions that are illogical and not accompanied by reasoning.

4. Conditions

We believe that we need external aspects such as approval, jobs, or drugs to feel satisfied, confident, and secure. Addicts use drugs to feel happy, worthy, and stable, which is also why these people are having a hard time quitting addicting substances.

How do these conditions keep people from abusing substances? They might think of the following:

  • ‘Having a few drinks will keep me at ease.’
  • ‘I feel happy when I take drugs.’
  • ‘I am not myself when I do not take drugs.’.

5. Victim Mentality

Victim mentality occurs when someone falsely believes that their circumstances dictate their actions rather than recognizing that they have control over their own choices. It often surfaces when individuals blame others for their poor decisions, such as drug use. Adopting a victim mentality serves as a defense mechanism, allowing individuals to avoid taking full responsibility for their addiction and hindering their ability to achieve lasting recovery.

How To Change Addictive Thinking

To recover from addictive thinking patterns, here are ways how to change addictive thinking and get sober:

  1. Be conscious of the consequences

Substance use triggers people to have impulsive actions. You must be aware of the abrupt feeling that causes you to act inappropriately. One thing is to pause and evaluate how these actions significantly affect your loved ones. It is better to list all addictive patterns you have struggled with in order to manage and think of them as the shadow of addiction. Accept it as something you need to fight back for you to be better.

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  1. Make yourself busy to avoid triggers

Triggers are reminders that subconsciously keep you influenced by addiction. They can take various forms, like places, people, events, or things, and it’s best to keep them away from you. Instead, find new activities to keep yourself occupied, such as hobbies, work, spending time outdoors, moving to a new place, or starting fresh. It’s crucial to steer clear of people who might trigger addictive behaviors. Since triggers are unavoidable, maintaining your mental health is essential for coping and staying sober. Counseling, therapy, and rehabilitation at a luxury rehab center such as Heal can be valuable resources if you haven’t explored them yet.

  1. Abstinence

Letting the voice of addiction come out will only make things harder for you. You need to stop listening to that addictive voice. It will just get in the way of your hope and positive outlook on getting better. The voice will keep going over the same things, making you feel trapped and convinced that the addiction is correct. Instead of paying attention to those thoughts, you should ignore them and get involved in more exciting and healthy activities.

  1. Refocus and rethink within the present

The most important thing to focus on is the present moment. Look for peace and calm in what’s around you, in what you can see, hear, and smell. Pay attention to the small things, like a new song on the radio or learning to cook your favorite dish. When you’re talking to someone, really listen to them. Notice their voice, their body language, and their facial expressions. Work on being more present. This will help you pull away from addictive thoughts more gently.

  1. Invest in your physical and mental well-being.

Eating healthily, exercising regularly, or even taking morning walks is essential, and ensuring you get enough sleep to help your mind stay calm. You could also try activities like yoga or meditation to help change your thoughts to be more positive.

How To Change Addictive Thinking

Getting sober takes time, effort, and patience, but it’s ultimately worth it. Change starts with focusing on yourself, ignoring the addictive voice, and staying connected with loved ones. Prioritize your mental and physical health, and embrace strategies like finding peace in your surroundings. Believe in your ability to overcome addiction and commit to personal growth. A crucial first step is to change addictive thinking, equipped with hope and knowledge for a better future. You’ll appreciate your resilience and strength through this journey.


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