Obtaining an objective view on your own life requires a certain kind of self awareness. Self awareness itself in this meaning doesn’t mean the fact that you can claim you are a person or alive, but the ability to take a personal inventory of your own actions and behavior in a way in which you can judge them with as little defense as possible. You could think of it as looking at yourself as if you’re a jury member for another person; in this case, the person is yourself. When questioned, is that person who is being questioned telling the truth or not? Are they engaging in behavior that is damaging life or not?
We can’t expect anyone at all to be perfectly self aware in this way at all times; there’s probably no one in existence and no one who ever will exist who can achieve this level of self knowledge. Even mild self awareness isn’t easy in many cases. People will have more agency to take personal stock at certain times than others. It’s could be fairly assumed that while under the influence of alcohol or a drug, especially those that alter mood and their reality, makes self assessment difficult or even impossible. This is especially true when determining if you have a problem with addiction since addiction itself involves behavior changes which support the substance abuse and carries with it defense mechanisms to prevent a change to the addiction supporting behaviors.
We can reflect off of people around us, though, to help take stock in our behaviors to determine if the possibility of we have addictive behavior. A few simple but honest questions can be asked to get a general idea of where you stand with drug or alcohol addiction. Keep in mind, they don’t paint an entire picture of your situation but they can be used as general barometer of something less deterministic such as whether you’re at risk of becoming an addict or not. Ask yourself a few of these questions:
- Have I made a decisions while under the influence recently that I regret making that I wouldn’t have made otherwise?
- Do I find myself missing appointments or failing in relatively easy schedule obligations like getting to work on time because of my use of a substance?
- Do I become anxious or depressed when I’m not under the influence of a drug or alcohol?
- When I want to stop imbibing in my drug or alcohol of choice during a session of using it, am I able to do it?
These are only a few questions and not intended to be deterministic in and of themselves as to whether you’re addicted to anything or not but simply a tool to possibly gain enough self awareness to identify if you may have a problem or not. Answering yes or no to these questions doesn’t immediately mean you are addicted to a substance. There’s a possibility that something else such as general depression, anxiety, stress and other factors might be leading you to do the things you do, but that ultimately should be determined by more objective parties, such as those of a substance abuse treatment clinic.
To get a professional diagnoses on you or someone you know, contact us at Philly Counselling Center today.