Everybody tends to have vices, weaknesses, and sometimes even addictions in their lives. I am intimately familiar with mine.
I’ve listened to podcasts, watched videos, read book and articles, and have even prayed about my go-to’s.
But what often seems to get overlooked in the material I’ve found is that the majority of “experts” are talking about the symptoms rather than the root causes.
Instead of offering the reader grace and telling them that they’re not unusual or strange, they cut right into the moral, spiritual and religious reasons for preventing future indiscretions. They’re after behavior modification.
Yet, the reason a person resorts to addictive behavior usually has its roots in something, whether that’s early childhood trauma, or an unhealthy attitude that was passed down from one generation to another. Some experts actually like to do away with such possibilities altogether.
Really? So we’re all completely healthy, self-actualized people out of the womb, and the reason we get into addictive behavior is because we’re sinful, lustful creatures? Hmm… something is definitely missing there.
Oh, I’ve treated the symptoms many times before, and it worked… for a while. I would find some useful insights or techniques, and they would help, but they didn’t really seem to provide long-term relief.
That could have something to do with the difficulty of changing one’s habits. You can stretch an elastic band, but the moment you let go, it snaps back into place.
But it still angers me to think that true healing comes through merely changing your habits. That’s like saying you’ll get better at sports if you just practice enough. That’s true, but only partially. You have to have a self-image that allows you to play at a higher level.
For me, I’ve recognized the importance of treating the root cause. I may not understand it fully, and I won’t deny that there are probably facets of it that could be left alone, but if treating the symptom was enough, I’m sure we’d all be healthy. There are always underlying beliefs, fears and personality factors that play a part.