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The Link Between Self-Esteem and Addiction

There are many potential causes for addiction, and they vary depending on the individual’s unique set of circumstances. Sometimes it’s a method of coping with past trauma or a way to practice avoidance. Through the countless paths that lead to addiction, there is at least one commonality. Especially among women, issues with addiction are often linked to a lack of self-esteem. Women that have a healthy self-image and find value in themselves are far less likely to develop problems with addiction in their lives.

To understand this link between self-esteem and addiction, we must appreciate self-worth. It can be defined as confidence in one’s abilities. A person with a lower level of self-esteem is far more likely to influenced by the world around them. They don’t have a lot of belief in themselves, so they tend to be easily manipulated and persuaded. A person with low self-esteem may deal with negative thoughts and feelings and be unsure how to express them. They are also less likely to seek help for these negative thoughts. This makes them more likely to see outside influences that make them feel better, and often that leads to alcohol or drug use, as both are external factors that provide immediate relief of the negativity they feel. Sometimes the ease of negativity in the short term is more attractive than the risks associated with the behavior. The desperation to get away from the negativity can be overwhelming.

Low self-esteem also makes it harder for those individuals to get the help they need once they struggle with addiction. For these reasons, many recovery programs spend a significant amount of time dealing with the potential causes of low self-esteem. It is imperative that people in recovery understand that they do have value, and they are worth it. Despite their prior mistakes or shortcomings, they need to believe in themselves and their inherent self-worth. Once they are clear about the importance of their uniqueness as individuals, healing can indeed begin.

The transition from a primary recovery program back to your daily life can seem daunting. You have worked so hard thus far, and the idea of managing more independently may seem overwhelming. You don’t have to do it alone. Villa Tranquil offers a resort-like atmosphere to help women ages 18-65 as they move through the transition back to their daily lives. If you or a loved one are looking for an extra level of support, please call Villa Tranquil at 866-697-7573.