The belief that the real cause of drug and alcohol addiction is something other than our thinking and thought process, especially the thoughts that we have about ourselves, about our value and worth as a human being, is very pervasive in our society. The current tendency is to believe that addiction is about the human brain, about its abnormal nature. It is believed further that addicts and alcoholics have a disease.
We offer another possibility. I believe that the real cause of drug and alcohol addiction is to be found in human consciousness, in our thought process. I believe that addicts and alcoholics have a negative self image, believing that they are not good enough, especially when compared to others. This negative self image always causes one to experience a lack of self love, to have poor self esteem.
The first reaction of many individuals suffering from substance abuse issues is to reject the idea that drug and alcohol addiction is about having poor self esteem. The essential reason for this denial is that most addicts and alcoholics have difficulty facing the man or woman in the mirror and assuming responsibility for their way of being. The tendency is to blame other people, places and things for their current condition.
I have found that the ability of an individual to transform his life is determined by the acceptance of one initial belief, of believing that he is completely responsible for all of his experiences and life. When a person acknowledges and accepts that he is the cause of his current situation in life, then and only then, will he be able to work on transforming the true cause of his addiction to drugs and alcohol, his negative self image and the resulting poor self esteem.
Dr. Harry Henshaw