Do I Have an Addictive Personality?
You would not believe how many times I have heard someone tell me with unbreakable certainty that they have an ‘addictive personality’.
This they go on to explain is why they are so hopelessly hooked on booze.
Addictive Personality? There is no such thing, let me explain why!
These days we get obsessed with giving labels to things.
You can no longer find a naughty child anymore; they are all suffering with this disorder or that disorder. The word addictive has become so over used that it no longer has any real meaning.
We talk about a new TV series being addictive; apparently we are surrounded by sex addicts and serial pornography users.
The fact is we like doing certain things! We enjoy being entertained by a well-written TV series and there is nothing wrong with that. It doesn’t mean we are hopelessly out of control because we watch an entire box set in a weekend.
The phrase ‘an addictive personality’ doesn’t make any sense. It implies that something impossible is being achieved. That the addictive nature of a substance is being generated by the user and not the substance itself.
If some people were really said to have an addictive personality they would, therefore be addicted to everything.
It wouldn’t matter whether the substance in question was addictive or not, because the affliction would be being generated internally within the user.
People suffering with an addictive personality would be hooked on potatoes and mayonnaise.
No More Excuses
They would all be 400lbs from their addiction to food and most of them would be dead by the time they are 20 from all the cigarettes they smoked and all the glue they sniffed constantly throughout the day.
Drinkers use the phrase ‘addictive personality’ because the Evil Clown gives it to them as a justification to carry on drinking the poison.
We tend to become the label we apply to ourselves. But we can also manifest our beliefs into the lives of other people through our belief system and corresponding actions.
The first psychologist to systematically study this was a Harvard professor named R. Rosenthal, who in 1964 did a wonderful experiment at a USA elementary school.
The idea was to figure out what would happen if teachers were told that certain kids in their class were destined to succeed, so he took a normal IQ test and dressed it up as a different test.
“It was a standardized IQ test, Flanagan’s Test of General Ability,” he says. “But the cover we put on it, we had printed on every test booklet, said ‘Harvard Test of Inflected Acquisition.’ ”
Rosenthal told the teachers that this very special test from Harvard had the very special ability to predict which children were about to be very special — that is, which kids were about to experience a dramatic growth in their IQ.
After the kids took the test, he then chose from every class several children totally at random. There was nothing at all to distinguish these kids from the other kids, but he told their teachers that the test predicted the kids were on the verge of an intense intellectual bloom.
As he followed the children over the next two years, Rosenthal discovered that the teachers’ expectations of these kids really did affect the students. “If teachers had been led to expect greater gains in IQ, then increasingly, those kids gained more IQ,” he says.
You get what you think about, most of the time.
Thoughts really do become things. I once coached a millionaire entrepreneur who believed he was ugly and would never find a beautiful woman to be his wife.
We sat talking for half and hour and he explained how he had started with nothing, coming for a broken home with absolutely no opportunities around.
He explained he had fought hard and invested in himself. He had taken a lot of risks along the way but through sheer passion, determination and commitment he had built a business empire that now employs thousands of people.
He finished his story and said ‘so as you can see I need no help with money. I have all the money I will ever need. My problem is I am just so unattractive to women, I always end up with people who are no good for me or who treat me badly’.
It took me a whole weekend working with this guy to demonstrate to him just how valuable a man he was. He had personality traits and strength of character that most women would find totally irresistible. He had integrity and moral fiber that women can spend a lifetime looking for in a man.
On our final night together he saw a woman he was attracted to. He looked me in the eye and said ‘I just want to try something’, and then he got up from our table and walked over to her.
After a few seconds he had her smiling and laughing. In total he chatted with her for no more than ten minutes before he came back to me with a scrap of paper in his hand. Written on the paper were the name Zoe and a cell phone number.
He couldn’t believe what had just happened to him, but I could!
I had seen it happen many times before.
So what happened to this guy, did he become attractive to women during our time together or had he always been attractive but deliberately sabotaging himself to ensure reality fit the belief structure?
The Evil Clown knows you can stop drinking any time you want to. So he must convince you that you are not to blame and cannot accept responsibility.
It’s not the blind man’s fault that he is blind and there is nothing he can do about it. Equally the clown suggests; it’s not your fault that you have an addictive personality and there is nothing you can do about it. So you might as well drink and accept it.
There is no such thing as an addictive personality, it’s just another excuse, and another license to fail printed by the Evil Clown living inside your head.