Trading Addictions

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Dear Jane,
I quit drinking alcohol almost 20 years ago, and I quit smoking more than 5 years ago, but I have yet to release my attachment to sugar. What would you suggest?

We will tend to “trade” addictions until we get to the bottom line of why we have the addiction to begin with. While there is ample evidence that addictions have a physical and even a genetic component, there are thousands of people who kick addictions daily. Studies suggest that the best way to heal an addiction is to work on all levels simultaneously. Here are a few questions to get you started on the emotional and spiritual levels of healing:
When did your addictive behavior begin?
What triggered it?
What were you feeling at the time: Scared? Hurt? Humiliated? Abandoned?
What do you feel when you kick one habit? Do you feel the same original painful feeling?
Answering these questions will give you clues about why you’re trading addictions.

Addictions serve as coping strategies to help us handle difficult or frightening emotions and situations. Of course, they present a new set of difficulties, and once we get into an addictive pattern, we suffer the loss of what little self-esteem we may have had.

You need to know that you deserve to like the person you see reflected in the mirror. In order to admire yourself, discover and heal the root pain that has kept you in this vicious circle, enduring humiliation and shame. Often, people are afraid to go to that root pain. I promise you that nothing you will experience when you go back to it can be worse than what you have already experienced.

Never tell yourself that you should be fixed by now. That’s hanging out in Courtroom Earth. Hang out in Classroom Earth instead. (Chapter 2, Enough Is Enough!)
Acknowledge yourself for being in the truth that you are suffering and don’t deny yourself more help. Find someone you can trust to work with, someone compassionate and insightful. Those in your life deserve you to be free of this pain. Most of all, you deserve it.

About Jane
Jane Straus is a trusted life coach, dynamic keynote speaker, and the author of Enough Is Enough! Stop Enduring and Start Living Your Extraordinary Life. With humor and grace, Jane offers her clients and seminar participants insights and exercises to ensure that the next chapter of their lives is about thriving as the unique individuals they have always been and the extraordinary ones they are still becoming. She serves clients worldwide and invites you to visit her site, Here you will find excerpts from her book, more articles, TV and radio interviews, and clips from her presentations.
She is also the author of The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation,, an award-winning online resource and workbook with easy-to-understand rules, real-world examples, and fun quizzes.
Contact Jane at

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