Beliefnet
The Celebrity Therapist

Sherry Gaba LCSW, Psychotherapist, Life & Recovery Coach is featured Celebrity Rehab on VH1. Sherry is the author of “The Law of Sobriety” which uses the law of attraction to recover from any addiction. Please download your copy of “Manifest Holistic Health” from Sherry’s Enrich Your Life Series. Contact Sherry at sherry@sgabatherapy.com for webinars, teleseminars, coaching packages and speaking engagements. Listen to Sherry on “A Moment of Change with Sherry Gaba”on CBS Radio.

Have you ever stopped to wonder when your behaviors cross
over the line from desires to addictions or obsessions? When specifically does
that perfectly normal act take on a life of its own and become a negative driving
force in your life? The answers to these questions are not as cut and dried as
most people believe and, as I discuss in my book “The Law of Sobriety”
that specific tipping point moment may even register in our minds and in our
thoughts. While it may not be a pinpoint in our memories once it has happened that
normal behavior of shopping, eating, exercising, texting, surfing the internet,
our Facebook page or whatever the focus is becomes the driving force that
overrides our normal behavior.

In essence an addition is maladaptive or harmful because of
the persistence of the behavior.  However, the behavior itself is not harmful on
its own; it is the persistence and compulsion to do the specific behavior that
causes it to reach the level of addiction. Examples of this include exercising
and shopping which are both very normal and appropriate behaviors. When these
behaviors become addictive they no longer act in positive ways in our lives and
they actually become harmful.

Addiction to exercise can create metabolic imbalances and potential long term damage to
the body. Shopping addictions can lead to financial ruin not to mention the
relationships that can and will be destroyed because of the results of the compulsive
behavior.

Having an addition is not a sign of weakness, lack of willpower or even a lack of understanding. While some people with addictions
are in denial, most realize what they are doing is not healthy and they hide
their behavior from friends and family. Learning that there are resources such
as life and recovery coaches and addiction specialists that can help you when
behavior become compulsive and destructive is the first step in making changes
to get your life back on a positive and healthy track.

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