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Overcoming Self-Deception

Self-deceptions can be powerful during our time in active addiction. We don’t want to think that we are unable to handle our problems on our own and we deceive ourselves into thinking that our problems are not unmanageable. Self-deception in regards to addiction can be particularly damaging because we convince ourselves that we do not need help, even if the truth of our problem is plainly obvious to others.

We are often well aware of our intentions to deceive others during active addiction, but we may also be deceiving ourselves without recognizing it. Father Zossima, a character in Fyodor Dostoevsky’s The Brothers Karamazov, says, “Above all, don’t lie to yourself. The man who lies to himself and listens to his own lie comes to such a pass that he cannot distinguish the truth within him, or around him, and so loses all respect for himself and for others.” An inability to distinguish the lies we tell ourselves from the truth of our addiction can lull us into a false sense of self-sufficiency that keeps us from reaching out for the help we so desperately need.

As we begin to experience the nagging feeling that perhaps we cannot handle our addiction on our own, we are given the opportunity to finally face the truth of our situation or recede deeper into self-deception. The Academy of Ideas, in a 2017 article entitled The Psychology of Self-Deception, explains that taking the opportunity to face the truth and beak down our deception can be a difficult, but extremely beneficial process: “at such times, faced with the terrifying prospect that one’s character was in many ways built on a lie, it is far more likely that people will flee further in the opposite direction, piling deception on deception. To do this we run to the comfort of our daily routines, busy ourselves with social concerns, accumulate more material things, and turn to the security of conformity.” In the case of men and women suffering from addiction, we run to the comfort of drugs and alcohol. The recognition that we have been deceiving ourselves and minimizing our problems with drugs and alcohol can be a major step forward in making the decision to finally accept help.

Your life doesn’t have to be held back by the chains of addiction. You can make the decision to seek help today and begin building a brighter future. Resilient House, located in beautiful Shreveport, Louisiana, brings together the highest quality behavioral health and addictions specialists, holistic experts, and spiritual guides to help clients develop all the tools necessary to achieve and maintain sobriety. For information about treatment options, please call today: (833) 242-6431