In a world where so many people are struggling with an addiction to drugs, alcohol, sex, gambling and other vices, it is easy to question where the line is drawn. At what point does an interest become an addiction? If you are worried that some of your activities may be following the pattern of addiction, here are questions that you can ask yourself before you seek professional help.
Whether the vice in question in playing video games or drinking alcohol, you have to determine how important its role is in your life before you can label it as an addiction. If you find yourself making it a priority over other things in your life, then you may be addicted. You may also have a problem if you find that you are doing other activities less in order to spend more time doing the pleasurable activity in question.
How Does It Make You Feel?
Do you find the activity so enjoyable that you overlook the negative aspects of it? If so, you may be facing an addiction. For example, you may continue to eat an excess of junk food even though your doctor has told you that your health is in jeopardy, or you may continue to spend time on social media at work even after your boss said that his employees should not be on Facebook or Twitter at the office. Your dependence on the activity may be powerful enough that it gives you a sense of control and joy, especially if it helps you avoid tasks that you donâ€™t like doing.
How Often Do You Do It?
In most cases of addiction, a person needs more and more of a substance or activity in order to feel the same euphoric effects. If you find that you want to spend more time gambling, drinking or doing drugs, you should seek professional help. You may also have an addiction if you start to feel anxious when you think about stopping the activity, and you may experience feelings of panic if you go too long without enjoying your indulgence.
Has It Interfered with Your Relationships or Work?
There are plenty of hobbies that people enjoy without letting them interfere with their relationships or work. However, if your hobby is putting a strain on your bond with your loved ones, then it may be an addiction for you. You may also have an addiction if your performance at work has suffered because so much of your time and energy is devoted to the activity.