As family and friends begin to gather during the holidays, at one point or another we may have to face either ourselves or a loved one with addiction. There are really very few people who are not touched by addiction in one way or another. Addiction comes in the form of alcohol, drugs, sex, shopping, eating, sugar, and other compulsive behaviors that are an avoidance strategy and eventually cause distress.
When caught up in the cycle of addictive behavior, there is an inability to accept whatever is being felt in the present moment and the mind is constantly wandering onto the next ‘fix.’ So it’s safe to conclude that addiction often builds a wall of disconnection and makes it difficult to actually be present for the holidays.
If you or someone you love struggles with addictive behavior I recommend checking out the Mindfulness and Addiction series I wrote about earlier in the year.
Aside from those, it may be a good idea to do a bit of preparing and planning for the holidays. Here are some tips:
You may want to write some of this on a card and take it with you to remember because the brain may not function that clearly when cravings hit.
As much as possible, practice kindness with yourself and others during this holiday.
Please share what works for you below or any comments and questions you may have. Your interaction provides a living wisdom for us all to benefit from.
Photo by “ori2uru,” available under a Creative Commons attribution, non-commercial license.
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Last reviewed: 9 Dec 2010