Well-Being is the Answer to Addiction

You are here:Home>>Posts>>Blog>>Program>>Well-Being is the Answer to Addiction

Well-Being is the Answer to Addiction

Topic at a glance:

  • Is ‘being mindful’ the end goal of mindfulness practices?
  • What is well-being?
  • How do we develop a relationship with life based on trust, intimacy, and wonder?
This is an Extract from The Hope Mindfulness Manual  – Click to Download This Free eBook

Beyond Mindfulness

It took me many years to realize that the goal of mindfulness is not to be mindful, but to use it as a tool to gain insight into the three characteristics. It is by gaining a deep understanding of impermanence, non-self, and the nature of suffering that our lives begin to change in a profound way. These insights lead to a permanent shift in our experience of reality that are not dependent on our continued mindfulness practice.

The mindfulness journey can lead us to a state that I call ‘well-being’. It was my desperate search for well-being that caused me to fall into addiction in the first place. My lack of well-being also generated endless seeking that made life uncomfortable for me in our out of addiction. It was only by reaching a state of well-being that I could finally be free. I describe this well-being as having three aspects:


Much of our dissatisfaction with life occurs because we think we know that is going on. Our head is full of stories about how things ‘should be’ rather than noticing how things actually are. Instead of being fascinated by the mysterious and ever-changing world around us, we prefer to focus on what we know. This leads to a life that feels stale, limited, and where taking drugs to feel better makes perfect sense.

Wonder means meeting life from a place of curiosity. It involves letting go of our ideas about how things are, and actually looking to see what’s there. When we do this, something amazing happens. Everything we took for granted suddenly appears new, mysterious, and full of possibilities. Most of us are flabbergasted by how we could have missed such a wonder that was always right in front of us.


Our sense of disconnection from the world is arises due to the fact that we have become mesmerized by thinking. It is like becoming so engrossed while reading a horror story that we began to believe it is real. This relationship with thinking creates an imaginary barrier between us and everything else. As we pay more attention to our life, we begin to see how ridiculous this belief was – there is no part of us that doesn’t belong to life, so how could we be separate from it?

Once the sense of disconnection disappears, we discover a sense of intimacy with life that our heart yearns for. This sense of connection does not depend in any way on life behaving a certain way or other people behaving a certain way. We discover that intimacy is not something that we have to earn, but is what exists when we lower our thought-generated barriers.


Trust is the recognition that right now is the only way it ever could be. It is what it is – always. It is the ridiculous belief that we are somehow getting ‘now’ wrong that triggers anxiety, self-loathing and an inability to relax. Practices like Vipassana can help us to see that we have no choice as to what is arising – all that matters for our peace of mind is how we are relating to what happens. The Christian mystic Anthony de Mello summed up trust best with the words ‘absolute cooperation with the inevitable’.

In this video, I delve deeper into these three aspects of well-being.

Read the full book ‘The Hope Method’ or choose another title by visiting the Hope Library. Just click here. 

Other Topics That Might Interest You

Hope Rehab Thailand Online Help

Unfortunately, due to travel restrictions put in place in response to Coronavirus, our clients are unable to get to us. It is for this reason that we have put together Hope Rehab Online Services to keep you safe and committed until things get back to normal.

Non-Pharmaceutical Approaches to Pain Management

Drugs such as opiates play an important role in the management of chronic pain, but there is always the potential for addiction and other undesirable consequences. This is why non-pharmaceutical approaches to pain management can be the preferred option for those of us with a history of drug dependence.

It is OK Not To Be OK

In this episode of the podcast, Sophie shares her ideas about why it is OK not to be OK. Those recovering from an addiction can sometimes feel uncomfortable about admitting that life has become a bit of a struggle - this may be because they don't want to appear negative or incapable. The danger with this is that pretending that things are fine  can mean not getting the support that is needed to deal with the situation.

Without Imagination There is No Hope

Without Imagination There is No Hope by Paul Garrigan  The Link Between Addiction and Impoverished Imagination The nastiest trick that addiction plays [...]

The Ultrarunner Mindset – Podcast Episode 49

Ultrarunning is all about going beyond our preconceived ideas about what we are capable of doing. Even if we have no intention of ever running an ultramarathon, this mindset of leaving our comfort zone can be of a huge importance for anyone attempting to break free of addiction and start a new life.