Addiction continues to thrive because of a few primary conditions and one of them is denial. Denial could be described as an inability to see yourself.
You’re unable to have insight or see yourself clearly. However, what’s even trickier is that you want to continue to avoid what’s really going on because seeing yourself will be difficult.
Denial is a blind spot. It prevents you from seeing what you’re doing to yourself and to others. Denial exacerbates the cycle of addiction and keeps you imprisoned despite the many warning signs that recovering addicts later admit to.
Reasons For Denial
Denial creates the need to justify their behavior and leads to hiding the truth from themselves and from others. It keeps one’s attention away from the illness of addiction, despite the fact that that illness is only getting worse
Sadly, denial can keep you imprisoned. Yet, the moment someone chooses to be honest, everything changes. The wall of denial, which up until then, prevented your ability to see, comes crashing down.
Honesty can counter the tendency to deny that there is a problem, to ignore the illnesses of the mind, and to avoid the truth. Honesty is the treatment for denial, which leads to the healing experience of acceptance – acceptance that there is a problem, acceptance that you need help, and acceptance of the truth.
One primary way that honesty is healing is that it reconnects you to yourself. It builds a bridge between parts of you as well as a bridge between you and others. In addition to countering denial, the connections that honesty creates are also healing.
Later in this article, you’ll find ways to be more honest, to counter denial, so that you can bring more and more of yourself into the light of the truth. However, first, the following addresses the many ways that denial can show up in your life.
Denial Comes in Many Forms, as Listed Below:
- Avoidance – I will talk about anything but my problems.
- Minimizing – My problems are not that bad.
- Rationalizing – My problems exist for this or that reason and because of that I don’t have to deal with them.
- Blaming – My problems are not my fault.
- Comparing – Others have worse problems than I do and so I don’t have to deal with problems of my own.
- Manipulating – I will admit to my problems if you solve them for me.
- Fear – Being afraid of my problems gives me a reason to avoid them.
- Hopelessness – Nothing works so I don’t have to try.
The benefit of learning the above versions of denial is to be able to recognize it in yourself. Furthermore, you might want to learn a few ways to be more and more honest in your life.
Suggestions to Keep Yourself in Check
- Keep a journal as a way to track your behavior. Journaling builds self-awareness and reduces the possibility of getting caught up in self-delusions. The circumstances in your life become clearer when written out on paper.
- Once you notice yourself being dishonest, admit what you’re hiding to someone right away. Although it might be hard at first, later you’ll find a sense of freedom for not having to carry around material that you think you need to be responsible for. Developing honesty in your life is like building a muscle – it’s going to take some work.
- Work with a therapist to uncover the ways you might be dishonest in your life and work to change those patterns. Talking with a therapist on a regular basis is another way of staying honest. It’s another way of working through what’s difficult and having the support to make the changes you want to make.
These are suggestions for creating more honesty in your life and breaking through the barrier of denial.
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