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Vol. 11.3 • WWW.PSYCHARTS.COM • (512) 343- 8307 • BILL@SOULDIRECTED.COM

Addictive Disorders: Summary of Solutions
To become free of dependence you will have to solve the puzzles that maintain your particular trap. Because each of us has a unique biology and life history, your path of greatest advantage is for your steps alone. A treatment method that works well for one person may be worthless or counterproductive for another. The Extraordinary claim: The keys to the unique solution to your trap of chemical dependence are described in this 2 page newsletter. The descriptions are condensed, more complete text as well as well as tools you can use are available at our web site [above]. Chemical dependence is a result of natural – although occasionally perverse – causal sequences. The details of your particular solution will gradually become apparent as you develop an appreciation of how this bio-psycho-social system you inhabit works, and how to operate it.
The PIG says: “The influence of the incentive increases so rapidly as you approach it, that you are biased to underestimate its corruptive power.” •

Solution: Pre-commit your future behavior; see PIG #9 “Will Power & the PIG.”

The Soul Illusion
Things are not always as they appear to be. The first lapse looks different in anticipation than in hindsight. Even though most everyone realizes this when reading text such as this, the next time you are in a high risk situation you may, perversely, act as if you were ignorant of this lesson in cause and effect that you have learned again and again. We voluntarily repeat the error of a first lapse not because we want to act counter to our own interests, but because we are once again the victims of different state-dependent biases at different times. [Perceptual biases are, necessarily, invisible to the perceiver]. When we review a relapse, the thinking errors, which are so obvious in hindsight, were not so obvious when they were made. We do not learn from painful experience, because we are repeatedly fooled - we are taken in by an illusion over and over again Each stimulus has the power to elicit a motivational state, which in turn determines your appraisal of whether it is a good idea to consume the substance. You will have to accept the responsibility to manage your state of mind in real time, so that you will be motivated to do the right thing when confronted with a crisis.

The Problem of Immediate Gratification - The attractive pull of an incentive increases hyperbolically with decreasing psychological distance. Just as a small magnet has a greater influence over the behavior of a nearby compass needle than does the magnetic force of the earth, a small but nearby incentive [e.g., a line of cocaine] can have a greater influence over the behavior a chemically dependent mother than the pull of her child. There are several variations of the PIG that pertain to our challenge - including the desire to be rid of this problem . . . immediately and effortlessly. The influence of your earlier commitment to remain abstinent will at best remain stable over time. But the pull of the incentive increases exponentially as you approach it. As a result, you have insufficient respect for this challenge, now when you are far from a real opportunity to use, and do not appreciate the true nature of the challenge that awaits you. You continue to underestimate what is required to prevent relapse, despite your experience; you’ll never learn [see “The Soul Illusion” - the next section].

Solution: Trance Formation is our name for the
method of intentionally altering your current trance.
A brief example of the soul illusion and intentional trance formation: Stimulus 1 – imagine how good it would feel to get high. Stimulus 2 - imagine the details of telling a loved one you had been arrested as a result of your problem

behavior. If you have good powers of imagery, each of these stimuli would influence your motivation to get high, and the more vivid the imagery and the longer you held it in mind, the greater would be the motivational effect. To learn how to trance form a high risk state into a resourceful state, please visit our web site:, or call our office - 512-343-830 to arrange a personal consultation.

very weak man - always has been, and always will be. Consider Hasslebring's subjective reality, and how this will likely affect his will power. Solution: Meta-Cognitive Awareness – the understanding that whatever you are currently experiencing, e.g., cravings, negative thoughts, anxious feelings, are state-dependent phenomena that will pass in a few moments, rather than permanent, valid reflections of objective reality. Meta-cognitive awareness has been shown to reduce relapse rates. The appreciation that a belief or craving is simply a passing mental phenomenon opens the possibility of standing back from it and objectively evaluating its accuracy. You can recognize and pull out of self-sabotaging recursive traps, by breaking its trance – specifically: purposely aim your attention to a stimulus that gets you out of the recursive sequence.

Counter-Regulatory Motivation
The PIG bets that as soon as someone tells you that you are not allowed to do something, you will want to do it. This perverse motivation to do what you are told not to do is called: Reactance, and is one example of counter-regulatory motivation is – See PIG #4 - “The Imp of the Perverse.”
Even if you are the one to tell yourself not to do something, the negative intention sets in motion a sequence of ironic processes that wind up resulting in the very outcome you were seeking not to produce.

Attachment to Outcomes
Focusing on outcomes produces a madness that motivates escape into one form of intoxication or another. For this a solution has been found: Detachment from outcomes. Many people react to trivial stressors as though they were life and death issues, which results in chronic activation of their fight or flight system, and is related to shorter lifespan, less satisfying relationships with others, and desperate attempts to escape their misery by becoming absorbed in intoxication. • Solution: Detachment from outcomes.

Solution: Focus on what you want, not what you don't want.

Don't use negatives in your imagery or goal statements. You cannot image a negative. Mr. Lickfire tries to imagine himself not smoking crack, and the best he can do is see himself smoking crack with a red X through the image. Perversely, the longer he argues with himself about not using cocaine the more likely it is that he will use cocaine. Your mission in life is not: not to use drugs, that may be someone else's mission for you. You get to choose your mission. So, when it is time to compose your intentions, phrase and image everything in the positive: What you want, not what you don't want.

Good outcome is a byproduct of good performance. You will perform best when you are cool calm and collected, and focused on the actions in the here and now.

Recursive Structures
It is often possible to discern a structure to peoples difficulties in which internal states and external events continually recreate the conditions for the recurrence of each other. – Paul Wachtel Addictive disorders tend to become chronic; because once they begin they produce realities that promote dependence. For example, certain thinking errors produce perceptual biases that motivate actions that are not only harmful to the self, but reinforce the original thinking error. Mr. Hasselbring has relapsed again, which proves to him that he is a failure. He sees his future as hopeless, because he is a

The Karma of Practice:
We don't pay for our sins in the next life - we pay for them during this life. Practicing a behavioral sequence strengthens it until the sequence becomes autonomous - that is, the sequence can be triggered to begin by itself and then carry on to a successful conclusion without conscious intention. The Karma of Practice is that if you repeatedly use a substance, the actions associated with substance use become autonomous and surprisingly difficult to interrupt. Moreover, if you repeatedly relapse, the relapse sequence itself becomes autonomous.

Solution: Train the experiential processing system by performing well in real time.

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