Robin Sharma once said, "An addiction to distraction is the death of creative production."


Addiction is your co-dependent relationship with the person or item(s) which you're too reliant on. There's an addiction to food, porn, shopping, pain, drama, caffeine, gambling, exercising, social media, etc.


Addiction's intent is a sort of temporary anesthesia, although one must remember that with addiction, it both starts and ends with pain.


In other words, addiction helps us put a blanket over a messy bed and call it clean. It's like a tiny person standing on your shoulders and calling themselves tall. It is a delusion; that relief isn't real.


You have two options here.


A) Pursue an addiction recovery program.

B) Continue pursuing the pro-addiction program that society provides for free.


Continue watching free porn, continue buying cheap foods and fancy-branded clothes, continue scrolling through social media, and wishing you had a great ass like the models you look up to on Instagram. It's as simple as that.


I like to think of addiction like so:


Think of yourself as a bed. Each blanket represents an addiction you have. Underneath all of the blankets you've covered yourself with, lies your true consciousness trying to realize itself. Each time you repeat bad habits, you lose yourself to these addictions as they consume and control you.


I have struggled with addiction in the past; addiction to porn, addiction to (micro) spending, addiction to fast food, and addiction to constantly rehashing the past (trauma) as if it were the only thing that mattered or existed.


Insightful introspection taught me that addiction isn't about what you're addicted to. It's about your inner world vs. the external world. When you feel as though you have to look outward to fix what's going on inside of you (inward), that's when you know you have a problem. You can't fit a square into a circle (queue "Come Clean" by Hilary Duff).


Porn never solved my problems. I was simply re-living my initial traumas by focusing on the sexual energy in all the wrong ways. So, after I realized that what porn was doing was actually amplifying the ever-pressing problems, I did a lot of reading and stopped the disgusting habit. Looking back, I can't believe JOI was my drug of choice. 


With fast food, I looked to the external world and said "I control the situation. I buy food when I want and I get to choose what happens to my body." Again, all it took was a simple objective look at the words I was saying in my mind after thousands of attempts to go clean with no luck.


Rationalizing was a huge problem for me. I often thought "You know, I had a really rough day. I just want to eat food that tastes good to me." My objective self responded with "Wow, what a load of shit, dude. Yes, you had a bad day but don't be telling me that you're eating this food because you want to feel better. You're eating this food because you're an addict who's rationalizing. You eat the food and what, suddenly your problems are no more? What are you, fucking David Blaine? Do I need to slap you?"


Don't judge me. I talk to myself as if I were my own mentor. I have needed to do that for most of my life, on account of most therapists being no more intelligent than Borat. The only difference is that my insurance paid my therapists to sit there like an idiot and stay silent while they listened to my life go down the drain but never actually say anything helpful. (I did have an amazing art therapist though, but she was the exception).


Increasingly, the more I learn about the nature of addiction and how it previously played a role in my life, is that the less interest you have in things, the better. That's not to say that you shouldn't be passionate about working with your talents and skills, but that you shouldn't be interested in things that don't actually serve you.


Porn: It takes from you your focus, your sense of self-control, your time, your ability to forge healthy (sexual and intimate) relationships, etc. It doesn't give you anything other than a false sense of pleasure.


Food: It takes from you your money, your time, and your health. You fill an emotional void with food, which is physical.


Social media (unhealthy usage): 'You're comparing your behind-the-scenes to everyone else's highlight reels.' How many times do you scroll through social media and feel better afterward? Not often, right? It's more often that you end up feeling worse about yourself, or about something terrible that happened to someone else.


Addictions are distracting, not truly compelling. They're not uplifting, they're hypnotizing in all the worst possible ways. It keeps you standing still.


The broader concept of addiction is that it's an attachment to the external world, a belief that the solutions it proposes are enough to solve pressing problems.


Charlie Harper's (Two and a Half Men) view of alcoholism is the epitome of the addiction mentality in general. "It's only temporary if you stop drinking... so I just won't stop. Problem solved."


Addiction begins with pain and it ends with pain. It's a vicious cycle of behaviors that you want to stop but can't seem to put to a permanent end.


At the core of it all, I firmly believe that addiction is a spiritual affliction. When we're at war with two sides of ourselves (the societal norm, materialistic and oh so egotistical vs. the spiritual, non-attached beings that we all are underneath), it becomes easier to go with the easy answer and allow ourselves to be defined by yet another problem. Addiction shifts one problem to another. In a sense, it's like you're under anesthesia so that you can then have someone gut you like a fish but you don't feel anything. To me, addiction fits that notion perfectly. You're numbing the problem but then creating an even bigger one.


If you have something bad-smelling in your pocket, wherever you go it will smell bad. Don’t blame it on the place.


I'm fortunate enough to realize that mentorship is a huge part of addiction recovery. Community power keeps you honest and keeps you accountable. When you realize that you're not the only one trying to reconcile with two sides of yourself, you'll be there for others and realize that there's always another way. You gain clarity in seeing brothers and sisters in arms, what processes they used to conquer their battlefield, and so forth. For me, it hurt so much because at the core of it all, I'm very old-fashioned and conservative, but the material world got a hold of me after trauma. Mentorship saved me, and in turn, I helped save others from their former selves.


Make amends with the people you've hurt, including yourself, and find it in your heart to look beyond the scope of everything you've known, for there is more to learn.


Being a mentor, though, is not about being an addict who thinks that they can deal with their own addiction by making another addict go straight. You've got to do the work you're preaching and be responsible for yourself and others.


We crave connection, but so much of the time we are not alive, neutralized. Who are you when you’re listening to the radio in traffic? You are not you, you are on standby. Mostly we are free-floating and disengaged, lost in the spectacle. ― Russell Brand


Addiction, in a way, although harmful, is a creative way to keep yourself alive in a time where you really might not want to be; and although I'm not condoning addictive habits, heed its warning that something needs to change (and fast).


What, then, does addiction recovery look like?


For me, it's fully owning your addictions, making them known, taking responsibility, and fixing them one day at a time.


"Success isn't bought, it's rented -- and its rent is due every single day."


Another thing that's been important for my recovery is believing in something bigger than myself and being of service to others.


We're all addicts, to some degree. There's no shame in your story, just as much as there is no shame in my story. We shall focus on who we're trying to become rather than the people we used to be; and in light of that, we shall flourish and succeed by never stopping and always evolving.


The Teardown - tl;dr


- Increasingly, the more I learn about the nature of addiction and how it previously played a role in my life, is that the less interest you have in things, the better.


- We shall focus on who we're trying to become rather than the people we used to be.


- I'm fortunate enough to realize that mentorship is a huge part of addiction recovery. Community power keeps you honest and keeps you accountable. When you realize that you're not the only one trying to reconcile with two sides of yourself, you'll be there for others and realize that there's always another way.


- "We crave connection, but so much of the time we are not alive, neutralized. Who are you when you’re listening to the radio in traffic? You are not you, you are on standby. Mostly we are free-floating and disengaged, lost in the spectacle."


- At the core of it all, I firmly believe that addiction is a spiritual affliction.


- Rationalizing is a huge problem.


- Insightful introspection taught me that addiction isn't about what you're addicted to. It's about your inner world vs. the external world.


- In other words, addiction helps us put a blanket over a messy bed and call it clean. It's like a tiny person standing on your shoulders and calling themselves tall. It is a delusion; that relief isn't real.


- Addiction is your co-dependent relationship with the person or item(s) which you're too reliant on.