How is your New Year’s Resolution coming along? It’s the third week of January and by this point we are all becoming a little less diligent with regards to our New Year’s resolutions; let’s face it many of us have just given up. But what happens to those of us who suffer from an addictive personality disorder? Does a New Year’s resolution improve one’s lifestyle or does it become a new addiction? Should people with addictive personality disorder risk making resolutions?
An addictive personality is a set of personality traits which predispose one into becoming an addict, and an addiction is ANY behaviour (not only drugs and alcohol) which becomes compulsive and ultimately interferes with the quality of one’s life. The following are some of the most popular resolutions addictive personalities make each year;
- Lose Weight: This happens to be among the most popular of all resolutions. After an indulgent holiday season we are more than ready to commit to a new healthy lifestyle. The best way to achieve this goal is simple move more and eat less but, for anyone with an addictive personality diet and exercise can become a whole new addiction; over exercising and orthorexia. Over exercising occurs when an individual exercises over and above what is considered safe and will miss work, school, family and social events in order to get in one more work out; at this point exercising has become a disruptive if not destructive activity in one’s life. “Eating healthy” can also develop into various eating disorders such and Orthorexia (an obsession with eating healthy food), anorexia, and bulimia. Start this resolution with a friend or few friends, your new support system will not only be on the look out for signs of developing addiction but, also provide positive support and encouragement.
- Quit Smoking: This resolution is interchangeable with weight loss for the most popular of all resolutions. Health and welfare professional insist that anyone who attempts to quit smoking they make use of available support systems (friends, family and support groups) particularly during the first few weeks when your body is experiencing withdrawal. Staying positive, getting plenty of sleep and staying hydrated (this is the best way to express the toxins from your system) will help you get through the first couple of weeks. If you find you need additional support, talk to your physician about the nicotine patch.
- Improve Personal Relationships: Social relationships are one of the greatest casualties for people with addictive personality disorder and thus they resolve to foster more meaningful relationships. For someone in the grips of addiction this is easier said than done; addiction commands all of your attention, focus and energies, unless this is dealt with, it becomes almost impossible to make progress on his resolution. It is strongly suggested that one seeks support ( i.e. relationship counselling) in order to realize any kind of success with this resolution.
- Live life off line: The internet and social media has become another type of addiction. Whether it’s the various social media outlets (Facebook, Twitter etc.) online gaming or online chat rooms, these forums have proven to promote escapism and anti-social behaviour. Limiting your data package is one way of limiting your time online, once you have to pay for going over your package, you may be less inclined to surf the net for extended periods of time.
Should someone with addictive personality disorder make New Year’s resolutions? Of course! The goal of any resolution is improve one’s quality of life, and while there is the possibility of creating a new addiction, if one surounds oneself with a strong and positive support system this risk becomes mitigated. Remember to seek professional help if you begin to feel overwhelmed.
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