Why is it that we categorize people who use what we have labeled "drugs" as addicts, yet anyone else simply needs some medication, therapy, nicotine patch, or the right self help book? Is it because that's the only way to be an addict, or because of what our society has determined through judgements and lack of perspective? The truth is you are an addict, and everyone else is too.
Alcoholics drink because they have a tendency to compulsively drink. Is it not true that we all do things compulsively that do not serve us? From a nail biter, to a hot temper, compulsive liar, shopaholic or workaholic, these are all habits that people do compulsively. We are all addicts because everyone does something compulsively that is not in their best interest.
For those who don't know, compulsively is an adverb meaning "in a way that results from or relates to an irresistible urge." Do you tend to get in arguments where you feel like you have to get in the last word, or be right? Do you have road rage or get irritable easily? Do you bite your lip or nails, or fidget when you're nervous? Are you dependent or want to be the center of attention? What about negative thoughts or fears that you constantly think or talk about? Or the oh so common constant complainer or gossiper? Well, congratulations, you are an addict, just like everyone else. Do not fear, we all have our addictions. The question is, are you willing and have the desire to transcend it, or will you continue to wait until it becomes a problem or can no longer be ignored?
The first step is to acknowledge and accept that you are an addict, and to know that regardless of how long it has been going on, or how severe it is, you can get better. You may think I'm being a little dramatic to be saying this to people who bite their nails, but imagine the relief to be free of that bondage? Really a nail biter is no different from an alcoholic in terms of how the habit was created. Something in the physical world made the person think in a way that brought stress and discomfort, creating hardwiring in the brain that caused that compulsive behavior which is undesirable. Before you judge others for their behavior, remember to have compassion for we are all doing the best we can given our circumstances, and we are all addicts.