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Blessings, Misery, Madness and Blessings (BMMB): The Cycle of Addictions

Blessings, Misery, Madness and Blessings (BMMB): The Cycle of Addictions


L.T. Force, Ph.D


It is amazing how we learn. Our species is completely alert and: “Open for Business”. There are things we learn across our lives - based upon “studying and focus” - also known as “Intentional Learning”. In contrast, there are things we learn across our life - incidentally (without study or focus). In the field of Learning Psychology - we know “Incidental Learning” is more powerful and durable. An example, if questioned we may not remember what we learned in 3rd Grade. However, if we were asked to show the route we traveled from Home-to- School in 3rd Grade - we could show that route to anyone - as though we traveled it yesterday. What’s the point? We learn things in different modalities and forms (intentionally or incidentally). The other point, the things we learn incidentally - we seem to never forget - the reason is they have more meaning for us.

In my Private Practice, I focus on Adult Development. As I tell my students: “individuals are not approaching you or seeking therapeutic treatment from you - because things are going well in their life. Typically, individuals are approaching you - because things are not going well - or they want to change a behavior or thought pattern - their discussion and orientation is more - problem oriented”. The reality is: “We all have stuff and everything passes!”.

On a personal level, I come to the “Therapeutic Table” based upon years of training, years of practice experience and years of generational- patterns, including addictive patterns, within my own family system. We all have stuff! All families have strengths and weaknesses. Combined, those family strengths and weaknesses are gifts….they provide the foundation and tools for the discovery of: “reset, resiliency and recovery”. We all have those tools and resources available to us - based upon our individual experiences, our family patterns and our “incidental-learning life experiences”.

What do I see? What are the patterns? This is what I see - the patterns of addiction: “Blessings, Misery, Madness and Blessings (BMMB)”. Typically, when individuals and Family Systems wrestle with what evolves into addictive patterns - it doesn’t start with an overwhelming sense of problems and concerns. The “Addictive Patterns” start innocently and evolve insidiously - slowly into Misery - and at times into Madness - but it doesn’t have to stop there - the other side of Madness - one can find Blessings again. But this time, it looks different, feels different…..and the reason is because it is is different. Most people, absorbed by a “Cycle of Addiction” - will recount they never thought they would have the gifts in their life they have today. The reason: Yes, there is a “Cycle of Addictions” and the cycle begins with Blessings and transitions through Misery and Madness into more Blessings. Why? Because, as a result of the ability to “learn incidentally” - we see people who have experienced the “BMMB Cycle” and one begins to understand, learn and appreciate the power of Blessings - if you are willing to open your Heart and Mind and travel all of the stages of the: “Cycle of Addictions” . Those stages transition from: “Blessings to Misery to Madness to Blessings (BMMD)”…. there are always Blessings….and they come in different forms, shapes and colors….just be open to them!


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