In the process of addressing an addiction, it is not uncommon for people to swap out the substance for another in hopes of transitioning to being addicted to a lesser evil. For example, someone giving up alcohol, may turn to sugar. The whole premise behind swapping addictions is that it becomes easier to deal with coming off of a certain substance if you’re able to transfer your trigger substance to something that is considered “less evil” than the original addiction. The prime example of this can be seen at any drug rehab program where sugar consumption is off the charts.
The difficulty with this is that there will always be a lesser evil to keep you from confronting the reason you’re addicted to a substance in the first place. Transferring uncomfortable emotions to an external substance is far easier than confronting the uncomfortable emotions in the first place.
Often the avoidance of being present in these uncomfortable feelings is what keeps us in the pattern of turning to those external substances to keep you distracted from what you don’t want to feel. So when you’re giving up sugar, it may feel natural to turn to something else. What can you do to make sure that you’re not turning to another evil in the process of coming off of sugar?
It all comes down to addressing the issue of avoidance. Instead of turning to a lesser evil, turn to a habit that requires your presence. Try the following:
1. Go for a walk
Being present with yourself outside is one of the best ways to work through your emotions. Being able to work it out and work it through while also moving your body puts you in a state of being able to respond to your emotions in a healthy way
Being still and quiet is another amazing way to work through the present un-comfortability. So when you’re starting to feel like the present is too much, take yourself on a meditative journey that allows you to throw your problems out to the universe and ask for help from whatever your belief in so that you don’t have to bear the full burden on your own. In our world of doing too much, eating too much, thinking too much, the best antidote is to get quiet.
3. Write in a journal
This mode of dealing with emotion is so extremely powerful. Being able to write down what makes you uncomfortable is one of the most therapeutic behaviors you can cultivate. By writing them down, it feels as though you are placing them into an external arena – An arena that you can examine and digest without feeling as if the turmoil is happening within you.
So if you’re looking to heal your sugar addiction, remember that addressing the un-comfortability is best when you’re present, not transferring that avoidance to another substance. Although this seems like the easiest route, you can develop the above strategies to addressing the un-comfortability and eventually become an expert at dealing with your own internal battles, and that is what we call Sweet Freedom.