Becoming Addicted

Almost always when we hear the word “addiction” we imagine it referring to a drug, alcohol, nicotine, or any other substance that can have negative consequences in life. However, there are many other ways to become “addicted” that can actually have healthy effects. William Glasser, founder of Reality Therapy, is a well-known American psychiatrist born in Ohio who talks about the human ability to develop positive addictions.

The term “positive addiction” means to develop a strong involvement with exercise or other activity that may have beneficial effects on the mind and body. There is no doubt that carrying out a healthy activity will provide a better quality of life; not only improving our physical health, but our mood and mental health as well.

There are many activities that can help us feel better. Running, swimming, dancing (without alcoholic beverages), and walking are some which can become a habit. However, it is important to note that we must not allow even these healthy activities to control our lives. Losing control is usually the cause of problems at home, at work, and in interpersonal relationships in general. Having a balance is crucial to healthy living.

Eating properly is something we can incorporate into our daily routine. Getting used to eating fresh fruit and vegetables and drinking water may be important components of good physical and emotional health. Other mental activities that can help us to be psychologically stable are reading (i.e., educational books), playing chess, or putting puzzles together.
Often when a person suffers from depression, anxiety, or other emotional disorders, they also demonstrate a lack of physical activity.

It has been found that when stress levels increase in an individual, emotional problems can be triggered; problems which can often be alleviated in part with the discipline of a simple daily regimen. Relaxation techniques for managing stress are another of the many activities that we can add to our repertoire of healthy activities.

Clearly, forming health-enhancing habits and behaviors can increase your energy and reduce health problems that might later be a source of regret if left unaddressed.

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