Pema Chödrön says: “If your mind is expansive and unfettered, you will find yourself in a more accommodating world, a place that’s endlessly interesting and alive. That quality isn’t inherent in the place but in your state of mind.”
After a brain is hardwired for addiction, “developmental trauma-related triggers” come into play. Triggers are the thoughts and feelings that induce cravings. If an addict can learn to identify triggers and stop them in their tracks – before they induce the phenomenon of craving – that person has a chance to retrain the brain, return to the present.
Trauma triggers are experienced as irrational and impulsive thinking. They are so powerful that they simply overwhelm and take control of an individual’s thought process.
Unfortunately, anything that triggers the brain to remember the (long-lost) pleasure of using is a potential precursor for cravings and relapse. This means that almost anything – items both internal and external – can be a trigger. Internal triggers typically involve uncomfortable emotions such as depression, anxiety, shame, anger, fear, guilt, remorse, etc. External triggers can be people, places, things, and events.
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