The most life-changing and healing information for recovery and awakening.
Think about it, the minute we come out of the womb; we need attachment (human connection: closeness, nurturing, cared for, protected from harm). It's a non-negotiable human need wired right into our nervous system for survival. Human Beings need safe, secure attachments for mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual wellbeing.
If a child does not have secure and safe attachments, they will throw their authentic self out the window. It's why the need for attachment will always trump authenticity. Children will do whatever it takes to survive, meaning the child will have to adapt.
The way I adapted was becoming someone else in the hope of staying safe from harm, but there was a heavy price to pay. I had to disconnect from my authentic essence. I call this - someone else 'Mistaken Identity' the title of my book, out very soon.
Today, I can see that my Mistaken Identity" was a brilliant way to survive physiologically and not something to be ashamed of. However, back in those days, toxic shame ruled my life, and I continued to sacrifice authenticity as an adult because it still triggered my survival. It created a painful dilemma: I desperately wanted connection, but I feared the possibility of being rejected. I was in a fight with myself, and fear always seemed to win.
When I look back at those painful years, all I ever wanted was some sense of family, and my substance of choice (addiction) took away that pain. Addiction provided a fake sense of connection and family, which sounds absurd. It was like a big warm hug in the beginning. Eventually, my whole revolved around escaping the pain of not liking who I thought I was. Of course, I was completely unaware that all of this was going on.
My only way out of my addiction was to choose authenticity over fake attachments or continue to not like or know who the hell, I was.
[Sidebar: Authenticity is also a wired human need because humans need strong gut feelings to protect themselves from danger, especially back in our tribal days.]
Dr. Gabor Maté explained in my one-year course ‘Compassionate Inquiry’ that when people are faced with either attachment or authenticity in their relationships, most will go for attachment. They will seek approval, recognition, and acceptance from others instead of learning how to give it to themselves, which is very sad when you process it.
The bottom-line: We are programmed to connect, but we do not have to betray and abandon ourselves in the process once we are in recovery.
Today I have the right people in my life who love and cherish me just as I am. I am one blessed man. Grace, healthy attachments, and hard work paid off. Not only have I recovered, but I woke up to my true authentic self and have worked for four treatment centers, and for the last three years, I have ventured on my own with clients all over the world. I found meaning for all my suffering by serving those still suffering and want more freedom in their lives.