Everyone, and I do mean everyone, is addicted to something. It may not appear so on the surface. Maybe your addiction is acceptable in this society. (Or at least legal.) Do you shop too much? How many shoes do you have in your closet? Must you always be right? Did you have to drink that coffee? Do you eat unconsciously? Do you not eat? Do you take pills to sleep? For pain?

Addictions come in all shapes and sizes with the same insatiable hunger at the core—seeking relief, comfort, peace.

Years ago, an astrologer was looking at my birth chart and asked me, “So, what are you addicted to?” Aghast, I panicked, and replied, “not me!” She smiled and told me to relax. Then she explained something about this planet here, basically, there it was in the stars and then she said, “Kelly, this addiction is how you’ve chosen to cope with your grief. It can be manifested in almost anything. It takes away the pain, the anxiety, if only just for a moment.”

There it was, that word—grief. The disappointments, the “I’m not enoughs,” and I saw my addiction clearly as I tried over and over to block the relentless tide of grief. The precarious balance I forced myself into over and over when life was really not working, but somehow, by sheer force of will and of course, my fix, I marched on. I used the same tired tactics and tricks that no longer served me over and over as the void within expanded. Thus fueling my addiction, hoping to fill that ever-growing emptiness with something. Hence the term vicious circle. A place we all know too well.

When does it end? I don’t think ever. I think there is always a hunger within each of us to make the hurt go away right now. Oh sure, we may be granted a period of reprieve but life has a funny way of teaching—we think we have cast out this vice only to have it show up in another form later.

Somehow we have bought into this concept that we should only be virtuous and pristine casting out all vice and impurity. Who are these milk toast people? What would these pious people look like? Would they all look the same, think the same, most definitely act the same—doing all the right things every moment and I would despise them.

I rack my brain trying to think of one person who could join these “never make a mistake” ranks and nobody comes to mind. Oh - good people pop in my head and then I think of the mistake, the lesson they learned from not making the “right” choice, going down the wrong path. Even Jesus initially rejected a mother asking for healing for her child, calling her a “little dog,” as they were not of the same tribe/people and she was not of the “chosen” people. He only relented when she asked humbly again and again (Matthew 15:22-28.) Not the Jesus we like to think of where everyone is welcome. He obviously learned something.

It is in these very places of imperfection, the places we fall down, that we can discover our best self. Our addictions are only outward symptoms of our inner turmoil, our hidden wounds. What is your addiction? Does it fill, numb, or adorn you? How big does it have to get before you look at the stuffed hurts?

Here’s the key, acceptance. There will always be so-called triggers. Instead of seeing these triggers as things to be stamped out, I like to think of them as direct signs pointing to the places I struggle with. Usually it is the same old crew of “not enoughs” causing problems, and without fail the sooner I acknowledge the hurt, the sooner it gets better. It’s when I hide from the wounds with addiction that trouble brews and lingers.

I heard this story somewhere about an old shaman answering the question of, are we good or bad?…Within each of us there are two dogs, good and bad. Always there, forever. We decide which dog to feed, everyday.

True peace happens by accepting all your good and bad qualities and recognizing balance come with this integration…So, what are you addicted to?

Author's Bio: 

Kelly Ballard is an Intuitive Guide and Healer specializing in helping others to discover positive solutions for immediate change in their lives. Through private sessions and meditations, Kelly uses a variety of techniques to release blocks, enabling people to experience their most abundant and prosperous lives today. Kelly is also a speaker and a regular contributor to the widely read spiritual magazine, The Odyssey. To read more about her services and CDs, please visit her web site http://www.kellyballard.com .