ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Addiction - when should I be worried?

Updated on July 26, 2016

What is addiction?

Addiction is when you are addicted to a substance, thing or activity. Physically and/or mentally meaning you suffer adverse effects if you stop taking/doing said addiction.

My experiance with addiction

The first thing that comes to mind is cigarettes. Like any other drug it has both positive and negative side effects. Though the now I feel that the Negatives far outweigh the positives. I smoked on and off from the age of 15 to 23. I first became a regular smoker at the age of 19, I quit several times upto the age of 23 when I stopped for good.

When I first started it was only ever with friends who smoked then as I got older only when I had a drink. Then as I started working full time at the age of 19 I started smoking every day. I stopped many times but after a few drinks I would smoke. then a few weeks/months later I would get back to smoking without alcohol.

A big part of me didn't want to smoke, especially after having suffered Pneumonia at the age of 20. (read more about my history here) However I always ended up giving in to my cravings which ultimately came when I was consciously weakened through the use of alcohol. I finally stopped when I decided to give up alcohol due to the negative effects on my brain even if I consumed a small amount. (Read more)

A year or two following this I then made the decision to stop taking caffeine, which again is a drug with both positive and negative effects that is most definitely addictive. If you're a coffee drinker and you don't believe that it's addictive. Have no coffee for one day(or more) Thats how I found out.


When is an addiction a problem?

While many people are addicted to coffee, for most it does not cause much of a problem. An addiction becomes a problem when it starts taking over your life. When an addiction starts to interfere with your life and your responsibilities then it becomes a problem.
To you it may not seem to be a problem but often it helps to take a look from an objective point of view and think about how your addiction or 'vice' is affecting others around you.

While I believe that we are each on our own personal journey, I also find that it is important to think about how what you do and how you act has an effect on others and if this is good/bad for your and their overall wellbeing.


Do you have any addictions?

Do you have any addictions?

See results

Addiction is more than just drugs...

While over time I have always made sure that I knew about and noticed the effects of drugs and now try to limit my intake of such substances if at all. It is not just substances that are addictive. I started thinking about this when I was watching a documentary about Mr Olympia 2012 (bodybuilding) I started to look at my own life, as I have recently increased my gym activity from 3 to 5 times per week.

I started to ask myself 'am I addicted?' 'if so is it a problem?'. While 5 gym sessions per week feels like a lot it is not interfering with my work or social life. While my working hours and social hours are flexible the gym hours are too. If one day I wake up and feel like I need to have a restful day then I can. If there is an event when I had been planning on going to the gym I can go at a different time. (the gym is open from 6am to 11pm) Looking at the negative side of it I have been feeling more tired more often. However the flip side of this is that I have been sleeping better. (read about my insomnia here) Also during time when I am not too tired I have found myself feeling more able to take on work related tasks or even just more competent at completing basic daily tasks and chores.

Stigma of addiction

The word 'addiction' comes with a stigma, in my opinion. For the likes of someone who is addicted to alcohol being labeled 'an alcoholic' is something that is often looked down upon. While many people look down upon smokers calling it 'dirty', 'filthy' and 'unhealthy'. Not to mention other addictions like gambling or even illegal drug addictions.

While addiction is often looked at as a weakness it is important to understand that awareness is key to overcoming an addiction. Often in cases of addiction, people don't like to admit their problem. (in the past, for me, this was a problem)

You may have a problem yourself or you may have someone close to you that has a problem. I believe the starting point is with conscious awareness. Becoming aware of your problem and why your behaviour is in any way damaging to yourself and/or others around you. It is a more difficult situation if the addiction that is problematic is of someone else as you personally cannot make decisions for them. In these cases all you can do is (without being patronising) drop hints etc. to help them become aware of their negative behaviour. While this is not a quick fix remember that if a friend or family member is causing you stress or worry because of their addiction that you can only do what you can and that they are on their own life journey which is separate to yours despite the fact that you come into contact with them at whatever frequency that you do.

An interesting video on addiction

Following the video

While this video uses the example of testing on rats, which is a very simplified experiment compared to humans. It could indeed be on to something. Where more of my addictions became problematic following a trauma with the life changing effects of the trauma. Even looking back to before the trauma I was quite a nervous person, something that I self medicated with nicotine and alcohol.

These are all food for thought, just remember to be the best that you can be firstly within yourself and then for others around you.

Thanks for reading, please take a look at my other blogs if you enjoyed this one.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)