The Purpose of Addictive Behavior [Client Notes]

The Purpose of Addictive Behavior [Client Notes]

January 29, 2019 Off By bingecoach
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Quick review of what we discussed in session:

One theory about the purpose of addictive behavior is that the decision to do the addiction is an act of empowerment that rescues you from a vulnerable situation.

From a parts model perspective, the rescue is done by a part of you that has the power to pull it off. Often, as in your case, it’s a “fuck it!” part:) And we often say, “Fuck it! I’m going to (addictive behavior).

Our entire attitude changes, but the most important change involves going from feeling helpless or vulnerable to feel empowered and full of certainty again. Like the guy at work who’s taking it on the chin from his boss. He feels beaten down, helpless, trapped. He can barely tolerate this asshole of a supervisor!

Midway through his workday, after yet another asshole maneuver from his boss, he yells to himself, “Fuck it! I’m getting a drink on the way home tonight!” Immediately, he calms down and feels more in control.

Interesting how the mere decision to drink made him feel better. No alcohol required! He did stop off for a drink on the way home to maintain his own credibility, which is also very interesting!

Homework on the purpose of addictive behavior in your life:

  1. Notice when you fee the “fuck it!” part of you come on.
  2. Be with this part of you, acknowledging it.
  3. Trace the string of events back to any vulnerable feelings you were having so that you understand what the fuck it! part of you is rescued you from.

Purpose of Addiction in Action

Like the guy at work who’s taking it on the chin from his boss. He feels beaten down, helpless, trapped. He can barely tolerate this jerk of a supervisor! 

Midway through his workday, after yet another disrespectful maneuver from his boss, he yells to himself, “Fuck it! I’m getting a drink on the way home tonight!” 

Immediately, he calms down and feels more in control.

Interesting how the mere decision to drink made him feel better. No alcohol required! He did stop off for a drink on the way home to maintain his own credibility, which is also very interesting!

Final Thoughts

Then, as you can, consider that the fuck it! part of you is not so keen on your mother. Ok. Learn all you can about this part’s perspective in relation to her. Given your inner conflict about your mother, it may be time to stop avoiding it and learn all you can about it. The end result will be a more balanced view of her.


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