060 An Addiction of Attention

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060 AddictionAddiction…it’s the opposite of release.

When we are addicted, we are blinded to the damage the substance, repeated action or unhealthy relationship creates. Whether it’s drug dependency, a workaholic syndrome or being victimized in a relationship, addiction is a spiraling collapse for the next high. When we are in a constant state of anticipating the next fix, we lose perspective of time and space and become desensitized to the pain it wreaks on our bodies, minds, hearts and souls.

Addictions are attractive. They offer an immediate, easy “fix.” A workaholic may increase their financial stability by racking up overtime and weekends, but at a cost of losing time and attention with those who love us most. A chemical addiction may take away immediate physical or psychological pain only to cause further damage to the bodies and mind when it’s not available. And those relationship addictions that cause a settling, a sacrifice to values and acceptance of disrespect in fear of abandonment only further decrease a desire to seek healthy partnerships. We become a victim of short term attention, of immediate physical satisfaction and lose any potential to seek the long term reward of reciprocated love, and committment to self love.

Recovering from addiction is EXACTLY the same process as letting go. We must first become aware that it is not a healthy state of being. We do this by listening to our superfriends who know our blind spots well and do not place judgement against us because of them. Their lenses are in tune to identifying what ours cannot because the addiction itself filters it out. We learn to accept their observations as another truth, a truth our addiction doesn’t want us to know. We become aware that the addiction of short term attention without a deeper connection ultimately leaves us dissatisfied, unhappy and in a perpetual state of longing. Even worse, when we become addicted to attention (Facebook likes, Twitter followers, chasing multiple relationships) we lose authentic respect for where and who give us attention to begin with. They are seen as simply a supplier, a “fix” to our insecurities, and easily become replaced by the next distraction, interaction or attraction. We become resentful when that addiction abandons us and in a desperate desire to fill the space we seek a new high elsewhere. We spiral down with unrelenting acceleration

Addiction is an automated response, a dependency, a reflex and can never be sustained. Addictions take away our freedom of choice and mortar a brick wall to our most important choice – self love.

When we are addicted to mental, physical, emotional and spiritual pain, the only remedy is letting go.