Nov 11, 2017, 07:00AM

What We Consume Ends Up Consuming Us

Struggles with addiction.

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At 30, I’ve had just about every bad habit imaginable. I’ve drank too much, struggled with addiction, gambled recklessly, and smoked a pack of cigarettes almost every day since I was 13. While many of those habits have had a detrimental effect on my body physically, where they truly hurt and hindered me was mentally. They consumed my thoughts, leaving little energy or brainpower for much else. They’ve consumed my time, money, and relationships.

Addiction isn’t limited to drugs, gambling, alcohol, or tobacco. Anything we obsess over has the potential to ruin our lives, whether it’s porn, clothes, social media, or video games. I’ve seen so many people escape one addiction and pick up another. Women who put down drugs and shop irresponsibly hoping that a Michael Kors handbag will fill the void. Men who spend hundreds of dollars put aside for rent on a pair of Jordan’s. No amount of merchandise will make your life better. Like George Carlin once said, It’s all bullshit and it’s bad for ya.”

We all search for something that will make us whole again, failing to realize we were never anything but to begin with. It’s not even the money that matters to most gambling addicts, it’s the chase or the thrill of the win. They may tell you otherwise but so many gamble their winnings back to their bookie or local casino before they even collect or cash out. Their winnings were imaginary and both the casinos and bookies knew it. The house always wins.

That there are entire rehabilitation wings dedicated to porn both perplexes and intrigues me. In fact, any non-chemical addiction fascinates me. I say all of this without judgment. I’ve no right to judge another for their shortcomings or how they choose to sin. I enjoy Pornhub from time to time, but it baffles me it has the ability to consume people and ruin lives. Our thoughts become our realities.

The flip side is that although we may not be able to stop our thoughts from wandering, we’re always in full control of where we allow them to roam. It doesn’t always feel that way but nothing’s stopping you from cutting an ugly thought off short. We’ve all heard the old saying “You are what you eat.” The same goes for our minds. What we put into it is what we get out of it. The thoughts we allow to enter and reside within us dictate how we see ourselves and the world around us. So choose what you consume — both mentally and physically.


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