Actually, there’s no one type of person that is prone to addiction. You might be an extrovert, an introvert, or a little of both. The truth is neither is a prescription for addiction.
Some people might define being an introvert in different ways. They may believe that those who tend to want to be by themselves or those that are shy or those that drink alone are introverts. However, the term introvert was first developed by the Swiss psychologist Carl Jung. He developed this personality type to describe people who tend to be more concerned with the inner life than they are about the outer life. Introverts tend to keep their attention inward rather than focused outwardly.
Because introverts tend to focus on their inner experience, they may be more apt to feel lonely, depressed, anxious, or angry. And each of these experiences can be a trigger for drinking or drug use. Of course, whether you’re an introvert or not, the feeling of loneliness is common trigger for many people.
In fact, one of the most common reasons to drink or use substances of any kind is the feeling of loneliness. This might be particularly true if you’ve just separated from a relationship or marriage. If you’re living alone, without a community of people to spend time with, then loneliness can easily be a feeling that you experience in life. This feeling is very commonly one that draws men and women to want to get high or change their emotional experience through drinking. Others might turn to substance use, such as marijuana or painkillers to try to feel better.
However, you don’t have to turn to drugs or alcohol to feel like you’re not alone. There are many options to choose from to alleviate loneliness. These options might include finding friends you enjoy spending time with, calling a relative, or taking a walk in your community. You might connect with others or with yourself more deeply to feel like you have a greater connection than you did before. Of course, it might be challenging at first to change your coping tool from drinking to reaching out to others when you feel lonely. It’s going to take some practice and patience.
And for the introvert, one option might be focusing outwardly instead of inward. In fact, some introverts might strongly resist the idea of attending an addiction treatment center or rehab program. He or she might enjoy their solitude and not want to participate in programs with others. This could be a serious obstacle to getting treatment for the introvert.
Yet, research shows that sobriety and recovery are significantly more successful when an individual has professional support in doing so. Whether you’re an introvert or not, attending a program or working closely with a mental health professional will more likely get you sober and keep you that way. If you’re feeling too shy or withdrawn to reach out for help, at the very least, call a close friend or family member. Let that be the beginning of your recovery. As you move forward in treatment, you can craft your recovery so that you’re working one-on-one with someone versus in large groups.
Although loneliness or introversion might have been the initial cause for drinking or drug use, it doesn’t have to be the reason that keeps you out of treatment.
If you are reading this on any blog other than Transcend Recovery Community or via my RSS Feed, it is stolen content without credit. You can find me on Twitter via @RecoveryRobert Come and visit our blog at http://TranscendRecoveryCommunity.com/blog