“Addiction isn’t about alcohol and drugs. It’s the absence of self. This absence is described as a hole in your soul. You can’t love others when you are empty inside. Recovery peels back the painful layers and heals that hole through connection, honesty and hard work. To love one self, is the beginning of a lifetime recovery.”

Addiction presents itself in many forms. A substance is only one of those symptoms. Underneath is the cause that is screaming out to be healed.

Underneath every addiction is a set of unhealthy behavioural patterns that is our best attempt to find love, belonging, and connection in this world. If we found that in unhealthy relationships, we develop a soul-destroying addiction to low self-worth! It formed so young that we’ve been repeating the pattern since childhood without awareness. It becomes our way of being. Addiction presents itself as a lack of self-love with unhealthy boundaries for self and others in the relationships in our lives.

If we are not loving ourselves in a healthy way, we connect in this world through codependency. Codependency is addiction’s first cousin. They hang out together constantly and keep the user of these unhealthy traits caught in toxic situations and relationships. We can remove the substance etc, but unless we look at these patterns of behaving in this world that lie behind the addiction, we’ll end up back on the merry-go-round again. Moving from codependency to interdependency is a lifetime journey home to self-acceptance and self-love.

It’s at the core of who we are as human beings and takes honesty, courage and strength to face, change and heal. We will change profoundly as a result. We won’t fit in the same mould again. And that’s a good thing. The mould wasn’t of our making in the first place. We attached ourselves to it and completely overrode our need for authenticity. When we override our need for authenticity in order to attach, we’re in trouble, we’ve just abandoned our soul.

Overcoming addiction, which is at the core of every human being, is a life-long journey back to loving the self. That’s the hole in the soul we experience. It’s calling us home to self. Been shouting out to us all our lives. We hear it as a feeling of “I don’t fit in in this world”, you don’t, you fit inside you.

We were trying to escape ourselves all our lives. When we love ourselves fully and in a healthy way, we’re delighted to stay home inside ourselves wherever we go. Do we wake up and hear our soul calling? Or do go back asleep and numb it down? To love oneself is a life long journey of self-discovery and exploration. It’s not for the faint-hearted, but it’s the only worthwhile journey we can experience here on earth. Be an inner explorer.


Norah Finn.