Coping with cravings is the key to tackling alcoholism. If you can manage to not give in to your cravings, or you can adapt so that you don’t get so many cravings in the first place, then there is no more addiction is there?
How you view your own cravings will determine how much power they have over you. If you believe that a craving won’t naturally go away once it has started, or if you think that the only way to deal with a craving is to drink, then of course you will be fairly powerless over them. This is the cognitive component of your addiction.
Making yourself aware of what things in your life tend to give you cravings, and therefore how you might avoid those situations, becomes a vital skill. For those ‘triggers’ that you can’t avoid, you can learn how to deal with them differently.
Lets say there are four types of cravings:
- a reaction to withdrawal symptoms
- escaping from unpleasant feelings (boredom, depression, anxiety etc.)
- a response to a learnt association (people, places etc)
- enhancing a positive mood
Each type requires a different approach to deal with it. And each person’s approach will be unique to them.