Are you addicted to your own emotional problems? |

Are you addicted to your own emotional problems?

Catherine Zeeb, PhDVail, CO, Colorado
Columnist Cathy Zeeb

We all have addictions. We are addicted to our emotions, to drugs, to alcohol, food, sugar, work, exercise, sodas, gambling and so much more. People do not particularly like the word addiction, and you may want to argue this point with me, but most of us are experiencing or have experienced an addiction of some sort whether you want to admit it or not. I will not be talking here about chemical imbalance, which can lead to addiction, nor am I talking about severe addictions to drugs and alcohol. Although there is a metaphysical response to severe addictions, there is not enough space or time here to address it. An addiction is a thing we do too much of that causes an imbalance in other areas of our lives. Our search for well-being and the lack thereof can lead to addictions. When we do something and expect a certain result, we either do more of the same to get the result we are looking for or we change what we are doing to see if we get the results we want. We seek happiness in things outside of ourselves to provide the joy lacking in our lives. Lets talk about addiction to our emotions for a moment. The addiction may look like the inability to let go of sadness. It may look like depression that exists for what seems like every moment of every day with no way to get out of it. The addiction can look like replaying a past conversation over and over. It can look like should-haves, could-haves and would-haves. It may look like looking for love in all the wrong places. It can be just as difficult to detox from emotions as it is to recover from heavy drugs or alcohol.Our logical mind may find it ridiculous to think that we could be addicted to sadness, depression or lacking love, but it becomes a way of life we identify with. If we arent sad or depressed about something, it would seem out of the ordinary. If we arent replaying a conversation, we would have to let it go and maybe feel like we didnt win, if only in our own minds. If we arent out looking for love, we would fear feeling lonely, not needed or wanted by someone.Addiction can seem like a good thing, too. You may think an addiction to exercise is a good thing, for example. If the need to exercise is so great that it takes away from work, family and friends or is a threat to your health, it could be considered an addiction an imbalance in your life.I am not talking here about having a passion for something. Im talking about something you do too much of, and as a result, something or someone suffers because of it. Having passion for something in life is wonderful and fulfilling. There is a big difference between having passion for something in life and having an addiction toward it, though. If, for example, your passion is women, lots of them, then dont get married and expect your partner to understand. If your passion is video games and you spend eight to 10 hours a day playing them and dont spend quality time with your partner, children or family or if your work suffers for it, this is an addiction.Addictions are escapes from life. They are an escape from an emotion that youre not wanting or willing to face. It may seem easier to be so busy that you dont stop long enough to truly take care of yourself or those around you. Its all about balance. Are your children getting the best of you? Are you truly available for your relationship? Are you taking one moment a day to check in to see how youre feeling and how youre participating with those around you? Are you being the best you can be for you?We all want balance and well-being. If you find that you recognize a possible addiction, then change at least some of that behavior today. Addictions dont change without our participation. Our need to feel more balanced and our need to have a sense of well-being and unity in our lives is strong. We forget. We dont realize how it takes one moment to recognize something and one moment to change it.Live your passions, and enjoy the balance that life can be. Your relationships will flourish, your children will thrive, and your work will succeed because you fully participate. Take a quick look at how you want your life to be, and make it happen. Catherine Zeeb holds a Doctorate of Philosophy in metaphysics. She has a private therapy practice in Edwards and teaches metaphysics at Colorado Mountain College in Edwards. You can visit her Web site at

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