Personal Development

The Nature of Addiction and the Subconscious Mind: Identifying 3 Factors That Lure Some People to Become Addicts

The Nature of Addiction and the Subconscious Mind: Identifying 3 Factors That Lure Some People to Become Addicts

Life on this planet is demanding. Everyone has a job to do, and each person has been given unique gifts that often help to identify his or her purpose. 

Much of the time, an individual does not find a way to live their purpose because they have not found a way to get paid for it. We learn early on that we cannot function well in a society without sufficient monetary resources.

Couple that with society and culture seemingly and endlessly flashing expensive cars, homes, and meaningless “stuff.” The media places so much weight on it, telling us this is to be important to us.  This bombardment can lead a susceptible person to depression and possibly addiction as a way to numb feelings of inadequacy.

The responsibility of life placed on peoples’ shoulders weighs heavily early on. We are distracted from our passions for many reasons, like:

  • The need to provide for one’s self and/or family
  • Accountability to others
  • I come from a family with an addiction history.
  • Lost opportunities

These, and many more reasons can cloud a person in negative emotions.  The need to escape from the heaviness is often what leads to addictions.  These addictions are all self-sabotage and can be to anything like:

  • Drugs
  • Alcohol
  • Caffeine
  • Food, unhealthy food
  • Undesirable or illegal behavior 

3 Factors that Can Lead A Person To Addiction

1. A Need to “Escape”

In the mind of an addiction prone person in general, the above list can lead to an escape. Drugs and alcohol in particular can help cut off the pain- for a short amount of time.  Food and caffeine are also in this category, and are harder to identify because these “drugs” are not illegal.  

Caffeine, in particular, is hailed to be healthy in the mainstream media.  A deep dive into caffeine and the hidden dangers of it will show you quickly that this isn’t so.  Many ailments and conditions attributed to age can be linked to caffeine consumption.

2. That Critical Inner Voice

That Critical Inner Voice

A trigger factor for addiction can be a feeling of lack of support or a need to dull the pain or emptiness, whether it is known to the person or not. 

This is guided by a destructive process of thought that forms an unending loop of seducing the person to participate in the addiction only to punish them for giving in. The punishment is harsh and compounding. It takes away their life force, productivity, and essentially, their happiness and fulfillment.

People prone to addiction have a critical inner voice that guides them to negative behavior by appearing to be comforting. To an alcoholic, that inner critical voice might sound like this:

“You’ve had a very stressful week, and have done very well not indulging. You can have one drink. “

Or to a food addict who is addicted to junk food, that critical inner voice may sound like: “The children aren’t the only ones who need a cookie sometimes.  You’ve been so good.  Just have one or two.”


3. Self-Sabotage

Some may call this critical inner voice self-sabotage because it is cleverly cloaked in kind intentions. A person is usually not consciously aware of the negative programming. 

This inner conversation is an attempt by the subconscious to keep you safe, and being “safe” is not always good for you. Its goal is to stay with what is familiar, whether it is positive or negative. This is how the subconscious mind works. 

As self-sabotage expert and coach, Jason Cristoff explains that the subconscious mind is a powerful entity. To illustrate how powerful it is, consider that in any given second, our conscious mind is able to process 140 items. In that same second, our subconscious mind has the ability to process 11 million items, most of which we are unaware of.

The subconscious mind’s job is to keep you safe and keep you within your herd. What is safe for the subconscious mind is familiarity.  Humans are herd animals. We determine that safety is achieved by doing what the herd is doing and sticking with the majority whether we admit to it or not.  The subconscious mind will ensure that you do.  This is why it is often so hard to break free of a lifestyle that you want to leave behind.

How does the subconscious determine what is safe?

At 11 million items a second, the subconscious mind is constantly making and updating a list of what is happening around you. Most of the things happening around you are not something that you are conscious of. 

Whatever items on that list appear the most are what the subconscious considers safe, and its goal is to stay in the safe zone.

This is why most people who go on a diet fail. If you have to rely on will power alone to change your lifestyle and what you eat, you will be battling your subconscious. It will most always win, because you don’t have a chance to muscle over the subconscious mind. 

The subconscious mind is like a computer, and it has been programmed to prefer and steer you towards whatever the most plentiful experiences you have had in your life. If you have been overweight most of your life, your subconscious mind will see to it that it stays that way.

Well-meaning family and friends

Have you ever noticed how uncomfortable friends and family become when you try to break away from the norm?  For example, start eating better, decline the unhealthy choices and see how those in your close circle become a bit uncomfortable. 

While well meaning, they are the first to offer you your choice from the cookie platter with the justification that you have been doing so well all week.   Whether they know it or not, it is their subconscious trying to bring back normalcy to the herd.  This involves reeling you back into their way of life.

Childhood Home Environment

If a person grew up with turmoil and addiction in their house, whether they understand or agree with this, they are much more likely to find themselves in a chaotic and addictive environment as they grow older. This is all they know, and the subconscious mind is steering this person to what is familiar. 

This is why some people are attracted to others who bring chaos into their lives, despite wanting nothing to do with it.

This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the subconscious mind, and how it is closely tied to addictions and addictive behaviors.

To dive deeper into the incredible subconscious mind,  there are many great books to read further.  A good start is Dr. Joseph Murphy’s book, The Power of Your Subconscious Mind. 

It has over 57,000 reviews at an average rating of 4.5 stars and has made a huge difference in many addicts’  lives.

The book is available in 5 different formats on Amazon:

  • Kindle
  • Audio
  • Paperback (used and new)
  • Hardcover   (used and new)
  • Spiralbound

The Power Of Your Subconscious Mind

The Power Of Your Subconscious Mind
The Power Of Your Subconscious Mind

Here is an excerpt taken from The Power of Your Subconscious Mind by Joseph Murphy

The Power Of Your Subconscious Mind by Joseph Murphy –
I have seen miracles happen to men and women in all walks of life all over the world. Miracles will happen to you too when you begin using the magic power of your subconscious mind.
This book is designed to teach you that your habitual thinking and imagery mold, fashion, and create your destiny; for as a man thinketh in his subconscious mind, so is he. –
Why is one man sad and the other man happy?
Why is one man joyous and prosperous and another man poor and miserable?
Why is one man fearful and anxious and the other full of faith and confidence?
Why does one man have a beautiful, luxurious home while another man lives out a meager existence in a slum?
Why is one man a great success and another an abject failure?
Why is one speaker outstanding, another immensely popular and the third mediocre and unpopular?
Why is one man a genius in his work or profession while the other man toils and moils all his life without doing or accomplishing anything worthwhile?
Why is one man healed of a so-called incurable disease and another isn’t? Why is it so many good, kind, religious people suffer the tortures of the damned in their mind and body?
Why is it that many immoral and irreligious people succeed, prosper, and enjoy radiant health?
Why is one woman happily married and her sister very unhappy and frustrated?

Is there an answer to these questions in the workings of your conscious and subconscious minds? There most certainly is. –
Taken from the book “The Power of Your Subconscious Mind” by Dr. Joseph Murphy

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Teacher, Real Estate Investor
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