habit – a settled or regular tendency or practice, especially one that is hard to give up
addicted – strongly inclined or compelled to do, use, or indulge in something repeatedly
binge – indulge in an activity to excess
THE DANGER OF HABITS
Habits are so easy, so “fulfilling” – good ones like hobbies, bad ones like overeating, porn, gaming, gambling, control, and basically overdoing anything.
Dopamine modulates the brain’s ability to perceive reward reinforcement.
The amount of dopamine rush decreases as the brain becomes habituated to an experience
“Over time, the consistently high levels of dopamine create plastic changes to the brain, desensitizing neurons so that they are less affected by it and decreasing the number of receptors. That leads to the process of addiction, wherein a person loses control…”
Dr. Nora Volkow
Over time the habit rewires the brain into believing the habit is beneficial or necessary to make it through certain situations. As a result these situations become cues that trigger the habit. This vicious cycle is called a “habit loop.”
And here lies the spiritual danger: Ephesians 5:18
Don’t become reliant on a habit to get through your circumstances. Instead, rely on the Holy Spirit!
Setting new habits is often difficult
As soon as a behavior becomes automatic, the decision-making part of the brain stops responding. So basically, established habits put us on autopilot! We stop thinking. We don’t consider the time spent, whether we need to be doing something else, whether the behavior is good or bad, etc.
This is why it takes reckless action to overcome bad habits. You don’t ease your way out of a rut. You’ll just slide back in. You have to abruptly, somewhat aggressively change course!
I wish I could stop _______ (fill in the blank).
So a question: What have you tried beyond easy?
- Pray, communicate with God about everything. Talk and listen. He has your answer!
- Fasting helps keep habits in check so they don’t progress into addictions!
- Draw the line far enough away that if you fall you won’t fail.
- Join a Small Group—Don’t just sign up! Even if it’s not in your area of struggle the support, friendships, prayer, and iron-sharpening you find will all be powerful, including the answers to your questions!
- Read the Bible and other good material
LINKS AND RESOURCES
Ways you can handle the constant connection to our phones and devices.
Online accountability for every device.
Online accountability created to specifically guard children and keep them away from internet hazards.
Click on any of the scenarios you identify with to get basic advice and discover resources that can help you or someone you love find their true self – the one that lives in freedom from sexual addictions.
Starting points for helping someone with drug addiction.
Understanding addiction and recovery. Connections to recovery centers.
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