What is an Addictive Personality?

An addictive personality is a set of personality traits that make addiction more likely. Addictions can come in a wide range of forms, including drugs, alcohol, gambling, exercise, pornography and more. Uniting these addictions is the repeated use of pleasurable activities to cope with stress, pressure, and conflict. Addicts use substances or activities to deal with the troubles of their daily lives. This can negatively impact their lives and personal relationships as an addict becomes dependent.

Traits of an Addictive Personality

Simply because you fit the description of several traits of an addictive personality does not necessarily mean that you have one. However, it may mean that you should watch your relationship with harmful substances and activities because you may be more prone to an addiction. The following personality traits may be indicative of someone with an addictive personality.

Impulsive Behavior

Impulsive behavior means acting without thinking about the impact of your actions. It’s kind of like eating a large piece of cake when you’re on a diet or staying out drinking even when you have to get up early the next day. Though everyone succumbs to temptations sometimes, a person who engages in this type of behavior habitually is exhibiting impulsive behavior that can be indicative of an addictive personality.

Sensation Seeking

A second personality trait that may be indicative of someone with an addictive personality is sensation-seeking. This means a person is constantly seeking out new experiences – new flavors, new travel locations or new sources of adrenaline rushes such as extreme sports. People who are sensation-seeking may also be the first to try a form of psychoactive drugs. This constant desire for new experience can lead to more experimentation, and later abuse, of drugs and alcohol.

Valuing Nonconformity

Placing a high value on nonconformity can contribute to having an addictive personality. When combined with the achievement goals valued by society, this personality trait can lead to greater chance of addiction. If you have less of a desire to achieve goals valued by society, you may be less likely to notice when substance abuse or other forms of addiction begin to negatively impact personal, social or work life. Sometimes the value of nonconformity is an indicator of someone with an addictive personality.

Social Alienation

Valuing nonconformity sometimes comes with a tolerance for deviance and a sense of social alienation. This tolerance for deviance can mean individuals are more likely to come into contact with substances and behaviors frowned upon by society at large. A person who has more tolerance for deviance may be more likely to experiment with drugs, opening themselves up to the possibility of addiction.

If you lack a consistent social group or social connections, it may be difficult to develop long-lasting bonds. Lack of strong social bonds may lead to loneliness. It may also be more difficult to control impulses and adhere to commitments without steady social contracts. Thus, social alienation can contribute to an addictive personality in these ways.

Compulsive Behavior

The final personality trait often present in those with addictive personalities is compulsivity. Compulsive behavior refers to engaging in activities even when they may result in negative consequences. If you are already more likely to engage in “deviant” behavior due to an impulsive personality, sensation-seeking, placing value in nonconformity and a sense of social alienation, having a compulsive personality may make you even more likely to form an addiction.

How to Deal with an Addictive Personality

Recovery can be a reality. Having an addictive personality  has numerous challenges but, with awareness and work, you can manage an addictive personality and channel it into a positive life. We move from destruction to construction one day at a time.

Beth Snyder

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Trust God, Clean House, Help Others

On June 10th, 2018 this day marked the 83rd birthday of Alcoholics anonymous. People in AA refer to this date as “Founder’s Day”. It’s remarkable and astonishing how much AA has evolved and grown. Millions of lives have been saved. Millions of damaged and destroyed families have been completely restored. Miracle upon miracle. What is the AA way of Life? In very simple terms : Trust God, Clean House, Help Others.

People experiencing long term recovery and are happy about it have been taught these three practices and apply this as a way of life. How do we come to trust God? We take steps 1,2,3. How do we clean house? We take steps 4-10.. How do we help others? we take steps 11 & 12.

My mother used to tell me “Beth, if you can read you can learn to cook.”  I found this same reasoning and idea very true with my own recovery. If I  can read I can learn the 12 steps! I studied the 12 steps and began to apply each one immediately to the best of my ability. I approached the 12 steps the same way I approached my first attempt at making lasagna and although I was much more emotional and desperate to get it done right and achieve my very own “Spiritual Awakening” I discovered if I just followed the directions laid out in the Alcoholics Anonymous book first 164 pages and really listened to my sponsor and home group members, that everything about the 12 step program is very simple. I say it is as simple as digging a hole with a shovel. Most alcoholics/addicts are maladjusted and will try to get out of work at all costs. It’s not that the 12 steps are misunderstood by some – it’s that they just aren’t convinced. So what does convince the suffering addict /alcoholic to pick up the tools of recovery and dig in? The destructive using of alcohol & drugs themselves is the only way to become convinced of our powerlessness.

First Things First – Step 1- Admitting Powerlessness

Being convinced we were powerless – is the bedrock for a foundation in lasting long term permanent sobriety. We must finally understand that without total abstinence from all mood mind altering drugs we have nothing. Recovery must include total abstinence. If we don’t first practice the principle of total abstinence-step 1- there is no recovery. True sobriety is once – everything else is us getting by in between our drunks or drug use or binges. First things first – acceptance of the fact we are powerless means action and to be willing to go to any length not to pick up the first drink or drug. This must come before all else which is very difficult once we start feeling better due to getting some relief from our active addiction. Relief is not recovery. Working all 12 steps daily is active recovery. Many addicts or alcoholics want to rest on their laurels after they have gotten some clean time. They make the mistake of just practicing abstinence and not much else. Experience has shown it never lasts. The insanity of the first drink or drug returns and they are off on a bender again. So what does it mean to follow our slogan “First things first” it means complete abstinence from all drugs and alcohol and working and living the 12 step recovery plan everyday. This is always first! If we do put any person, job , relationship, money etc. first – even our kids or spouse- ahead of our recovery – we are returned to the problem of powerlessness. Abstinence and the 12 steps produce a new power – a spiritual awakening- and enough of a deep effective physic change sufficient to recover from this hopeless state of mind and body. I recently celebrated 30 years of continuous abstinence from all alcohol and drugs. We do recover if we remember first things first. Permanent sobriety is possible. Once we learned the formula to solve our powerless problem as our primary purpose we then devote at least our spare time if not more –  to helping other addicts and alcoholics solve their powerless problem- we say we can’t keep it unless we give it away. I’m grateful I was given this gift of sobriety and my primary purpose. To me and the other 23 million people in long term recovery this is always first!

Holiday Recovery Plan – The Do’s and Dont’s

Happy Holidays! For some of you this might be your first Holiday Season in Recovery! This is a very big challenge since so many of our deep rooted hurts are associated with family and the holidays. We call this a potential emotional “Boobie Trap” for people in early recovery. The good news is that your personal recovery is not based on the “luck of the draw”. Recovery skills can be learned , practiced, and some even mastered. Here are a few our top picks of experienced “Do’s and Dont’s for maintained sobriety and abstinence from all mood / mind altering chemicals.

Do:   Double Up – Double Up – Double Up !!! on 12 step meetings , prayer & meditation, all step work, service, time with sponsor, reading literature, sober fellowship, 12 step work, sober social fun, making phone contacts daily with other recovering people. Starting new sober holiday traditions and activities, journal feelings, get exercising!

Don’t: Hang around slippery places and slippery people! Don’t let your self get too hungry, angry, lonely, or tired. Don’t go to bars or places where people are drinking or using.Don’t get or carry any resentments. Don’t try to repair broken relations all at once. Don’t rush. Don’t overspend. Don’t complicate. Don’t force family situations or making amends. Don’t be selfish or self centered. Don’t get into any self pity! Don’t forget to be grateful your in RECOVERY!!!!! and Don’t forget to stay clean and sober no matter what – we just don’t use!

Happy Holidays & God Bless from the Lighthouse Family

Why do we have to Surrender to Win?

10610930_902107226483948_4713513282761993680_n                                                                                                              Why do we have to Surrender to Win ?

What does Surrender have to do with the subject of recovery from active addiction?

How do we Surrender?

Who or What do we Surrender to ?

 

The world’s population is now 7.5 billion. Nearly 1/2 of the world’s population — more than 3 billion people — live on less than $2.50 a day. More than 1.3 billion live in extreme poverty — less than $1.25 a day and  1 billion children worldwide are living in poverty. According to UNICEF, 22,000 children die each day due to poverty. (stats on world poverty)- Google Search

Only 5% of the world’s population lives  in the United States – yet – over 77% of all  the entire world’s illegal drugs are located in the United States. That doesn’t even include all the legal controlled substances nor America’s number one controlled substance and drug – King Alcohol.

Is the U.S. going to hell in a hand basket??? Well ….we are using most of the illegal drugs in the world over 77%,and  just in the state of Indiana alone,we can fill TWO – BIG -2 ton dump trucks with all the legal prescriptions(pills) in 2015 and don’t forget that our number one drug we consume  is still – Alcohol.

It appears that our Nation has evolved into something like “Everyone out for themselves!!” and  the “Me Generation” So much selfishness and we now have an even deeper need to remain comfortably numb- we can’t be comfortable in our own skin? There are plenty of reason for escape and pretty much using any compulsive behavior to get the job done!!..It does appear to be a fallen world and things have gotten worse – especially with drugs…….and…….Don’t even get me started on our latest epidemic with opiate medication being over prescribed in America and abused. The  legally prescribed medicines containing opiates  now  exceed street drugs overdose deaths. BTW Heroin & Opiate overdoses has replaced the number one cause of death (car accidents) in people under 30.Can you believe that 10 ,12, 15 year old kids and on up are using needles to get high everyday?

These are deep concerns and problems that aren’t getting solved sufficiently . This is much deeper than politics ….this is a soul sickness that runs deep…. Who and or what has become the higher power of our great nation? Money?  Drugs? High Tech?Greed? Fast Food? Materialism? So many false idols…Aren’t these secondary problems to the primary problem? …….Soul sickness indeed……….oh my the E.G.O.= Edging…God…Out!

These are deep questions – they are spiritual in nature. No one can answer the deep question if God is Everything or Nothing?  Either God is or is not?Majority in our main stream society less than half our world population probably will never ponder these questions.  We have become very busy with becoming “good consumers” instead of kind happy productive happy human beings. We want or need  to remain numb for the most part and are being now being taught to disconnect from ourselves, life , and each other by means of compulsive behaviors or addictions including social media. Many of us are on a broken path. We have over 21 million alcoholics  in the U.S. and only one in every twenty will seek and or find treatment and recovery.None of that even includes the drug addicts!

Abstinence helps for awhile but, unfortunately one in four untreated “dry/sober” alcoholics commit suicide. (Soul Sickness) Since 2001 to 2014 a 32 % increase in veterans committing suicide  – now averaging 22 per day.That sucks! Many that have taken their life have an untreated duel diagnosis. Some kind of addiction coupled with psych issues like PTSD or other forms of mental illness.

Therefore, these questions about “Surrender”are strongly considered for only the suffering and the dying. The people who are desperate for a simple reprieve from their living nightmare and the vicious cycle called  Addiction. They have tried over and over every human power. Nothing has worked. Nothing lasts. No real solution has been achievable for them. They suffer and the people they love suffer. Everyone suffers and everyone loses. There is no winning team called Addiction. Addicts & alcoholics at some point begin to realize that they will never gain control over their addiction ‘t understand powerlessness.   Families, friends, and professionals never fully understand the lack of control of the addict or alcoholic. Society is powerless. Our society mainly resorts to simply locking them up. Some of that began to change with the birth of Alcoholics Anonymous in 1935. AA began to offer a real solution to the individual who found themselves powerlessness over drugs and alcohol.That solution was a new Power greater than themselves.

So there it is …our nation has fallen into this black hole of Addiction. No one gets out alive without a supreme price that must be paid by the individual.That price is called  – Surrender. We either surrender to the problem or we can begin to surrender to a solution.

So….The answer to all the questions about how we Surrender to Win over our addiction can only come from one place – a loving God or Higher Power – expressing Himself through  our AA/NA Sponsor and our Home group members. This is how we learn to Surrender to a real solution to powerlessness- we surrender to a Power greater than ourselves. We must concede to our inner most self we are beat by drugs and alcohol-we are powerless-we are a real addict of alcoholic. We as alcoholics and addicts that have the disease of addiction our described as having a two-fold illness with a mental obsession and a physical compulsion(allergy). we need a two-fold solution to produce a new power! We need a spiritual awakening and we need other addicts and alcoholics to work with on both sides of the fellowship. We need newcomers and old timers and everyone in between.

When this surrender is applied we are able to recover from a hopeless state of mind and body.We become free from the bondage of Self and from our active addiction.

If your serious about recovery using the 12 step spiritual remedy you must have a sponsor and have regular fellowship with your home group.We must be taught how to be unselfish and help other addicts  & alcoholics recover.  We can’t keep it if we don’t learn how to give it away….

Do you want to win over your addiction? Only you can decide………only you can surrender……are you ready for a real change?….just know we now have over 23 million people all over the world in  long term recovery…their journey started with surrender….