Most addictions work in the same way: what was once a pleasurable activity becomes a necessity to function normally in your life. Caffeine is a great example because lots of people simply enjoy a coffee every now and then but soon find that they need a coffee to wake up in the morning.
While lots of addictions or addictive behaviours might fly under the radar and not cause any problems, many addictions have severe consequences if they aren’t dealt with soon. Smoking, alcohol and narcotics (drugs) are the most common harmful addictions and in the UK around 2 million people are currently fighting an addiction.
Acknowledge You Have a Problem
The first step you must take is to realise that you have a problem. Perhaps your drinking is getting you into trouble a lot lately or you are finding ways to have a secret drink while no one is looking. Maybe you are constantly craving cigarettes and you are spending more and more on the habit. Isolation and mood swings are the first signs of an addiction.
Whatever your addiction, you must first recognise that there is a problem. For most people, this is a difficult thing to do alone, so try talking to your trusted friends and family about your concerns. They will be able to support you through the treatment and be there for you once you are recovered too.
Now you need to see your GP.
Decide on a Treatment Plan
Together with your GP, you will be able to decide upon a treatment plan. You will need a lot of determination to kick your habit so be prepared for some difficult days ahead, knowing that at the end of the process you will feel a lot better.
For some addictions like smoking, you might find that the best plan is to try quitting on your own. One method gaining popularity is switching to vaping and then gradually reducing the strength of the nicotine in the liquid over a few months. This is a good way to avoid the shock of going cold turkey and is similar enough to help you adjust without craving the smoking break. You can buy vaping supplies here. A few members of my family have switched to vaping which has then resulted in them successfully quitting all forms of smoking.
Take Control of Your Life
Even once you are clean of any substances, you will still inevitably feel cravings. The key is to find a method to prevent yourself from giving in and relapsing. This might mean that you need to make new friends so that you can’t be peer-pressured or it could be that you have someone to call when you feel the urge coming on. Finding a group like AA or NA will provide you with an instant support network of other recovering addicts.
Taking control of your life isn’t just about resisting temptation, though. Now you can focus on the things that really matter to you like holding down a job you enjoy, finding new hobbies and activities where you can make new friends and loving your family. There are a lot of beautiful things ahead of you and with some real determination, you can get there.