I'm in the midst of research for my next book. I feel like while I'm learning about what happens in our brains, I'm learning about 'me' and what I can do about it. Hurrah! I don't feel so crazy.
We have 100 billion neurons or so in constant gossip mode, passing zillions of bits of information, things like, "Close up your sphincter! Go to the dry cleaners!" They pass this info via chemicals squirted from one neuron to the next, each one creating its own feelings and thoughts. If those chemicals/feelings are repeated, over time, you could develop an addiction.
Every chemical we pump out if overused is addictive and is habit forming because we eventually believe these feelings and thoughts define who we are so we turn them on again and again just to reinforce our identity, which we cling onto with all our strength.
You could say we're all natural born addicts shooting ourselves up with our own home made chemicals. It's like Breaking Bad we all have a meth lab in our own basements. All these chemicals correspond to specific thoughts and feelings.
Say for a lot of situations you feel shame, eventually you're addicted just because it feels familiar and it defines the feeling of being 'you'. It's better the devil you know because one thing humans really can't stand is uncertainty or unpredictability.
When we understand the chemistry of addiction to our thoughts we can free ourselves to evolve.
Now I can forgive myself for feeling pissed off most of the time.
My new book Wake The F ** K Up - A Mindfulness Guide for the Frazzled will be published in January 2016
I'm on tour with Sane New World throughout the UK this summer. I'm travelling from Aberdeen to Cardiff to Salford to Cambridge and many other places inbetween - full details are on my website.