Could you have an Online Addiction?

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Online addiction is a growing concern world wide with more and more people becoming increasingly addicted to the internet. Online addictions can be divided into categories such as, online shopping addictions, an online gambling addiction, or cyber sex/porn addiction.

Perhaps a less recognised but growing addiction; particularly among teenagers is that of Social Media Addiction. Both teenagers and indeed many adults find it difficult to not engage with their social media sites frequently throughout the day with some teenagers admitting to checking Facebook over one hundred times daily.

The problem with online addictions is that people are living their lives online and disengage from the present moment they are living in. They are missing out on life, face to face communication and more importantly human contact which is vital to our mental health.

Some people develop online friendships and relationships which they come to depend on for emotional support and loose all interest and contact with real life friends. Others create fake profiles and lives to make them feel better about themselves. These people generally suffer from low self esteem to begin with and can become depressed and further isolated through living their online lives.

Online shopping and gambling can have catastrophic effects on families and friendships with people loosing their homes, jobs, loved ones and getting further into financial trouble through their online activities.

So what signs should we be looking out for if we are concerned that we ourselves or a loved one may have an Online Addiction?

According the The Illinois Institute for Addiction Recovery some of the signs include the following:

  • The individual may need to use the internet more frequently to get satisfaction from the activity
  • The individual will be preoccupied with thinking about their last online experience and thinking about or planning for when they will next go online
  • When the individual does not have online access they may feel upset, restless, bored, depressed, moody or anxiety ridden
  • The individual forgets all out time when online
  • The individual may get angry when asked to get off line or share the computer (if it is a family computer)
  • The individual cannot stay off the internet no matter how hard they try too
  • The individual may consistently lie to loved ones about the amount of time they spend online
  • When the individual puts a job, relationship or some other responsibility at risk in order too stay online i.e. forgetting a meeting for work, cancelling on a date, missing an appointment such as dinner with friends/family etc
  • The individual may use the internet as a way to escape (or) it has become the only way that person can relax
  • The individual while online or having just logged off may feel anxious, depressed, guilty, even hopeless

If you are concerned that you or a loved one may have an online addiction, try this simple step to try to gauge the situation. Turn off your computer, tablet, laptop and even your mobile phone for a weekend to see how you get on. Re-read the above list and if you tick multiple boxes you may wish to consider seeking professional help.

Believe Counselling Worldwide via Skype

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Are you looking for a professional online Counsellor and Psychotherapist to begin sessions from the comfort of your own home or office?

Believe Counselling & Psychotherapy offers a one to one, confidential service on a wide range of issues. Sessions are adapted to the needs of each client and multiple therapeutic approaches can be utilised throughout therapy as required.

For enquiries please Call Carol on 0867371737 or email carol@believecounselling.ie

Talk, heal, believe!

Celebrate Life, Love, Family and Friendship

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Celebrate Life, Love, Family and Friendship.

Situations can change in an instant so don’t leave yourself open to regrets.

If you have something to tell someone and they are in a place that they can hear it go for it! If not, let go and let god, there is nothing you can do at this moment.

Try not to loose sight of the people who truly love and support you. People who love you for who you are and support you when you need it most are priceless!

Always show Compassion

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Please don’t doubt your inner strength…

There are times when it can feel like life is beating us down. We may hate our job, be in a relationship that is not right for us, lack money, time, even hope!

Sometimes we cannot change what is happening in our life BUT most of the time we can. It takes strength and courage to take the necessary steps to CHANGE your life, change your circumstances or take a leap of faith.

If you are fearful of change but know in your heart what you want or need to do, DO IT! Take the leap, make the change if you don’t  YOU are keeping yourself stuck! Fear is an illusion, let go of your fear, face what is holding you back and I gaurantee you will feel empowered no matter how scary the experience was.

Be Honsest with Yourself

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Sometimes being honest with ourself is the hardest thing in the world to do. To admit we are wrong, we have been in denial, we made a mistake, we hurt someone, they hurt us, to admit that we are not quite good enough at something we are trying to do or to realise that we are not living our truth.

The only way to have a happy and fulfiling life is to be yourself and be true to who you are. Stop making excuses, stop trying to please others and listen to your inner voice. The truth will set you free if you have the courage to listen and make changes.

How much time and energy do you waste trying to please other people? Doing things for others that you don’t want to do? How often do you do something or not do something because you are worried about what other people will think about you?

Let me be blunt, what other people think of you is not important and it is none of your business!

It is NOT possible to keep everyone happy or for everyone to like you. People tend to judge you in a glance these days without ever having spoken to you or knowing anything about you. So I ask you, why should you care what they think? Likewise, a friend or family member may disagree with decisions you make, so what? You make your decisions for you based on your life, your needs, your wants etc.. it is none of their business!

Live your life your way. Be who you are and who you want to be. The people who love you will support you regardless and anyone elses opinion does not have to impact on you. Remember people are always projecting their ‘issues’ onto you. Their thoughts and opinions are coloured by their life experience, beliefs, rules they have been thought etc.. No one has to agree with you, just be sure what you do is coming from a good place, with a good intention and that it feels right.

Clarity from the Serenity Prayer

For those of you who are not aware of the Serenity Prayer allow me to introduce you to a very import part of it. These words help me to become grounded and figure out if there is something I can do to improve a situation or if I need to let it go because I have no control over it. If you are religious or spiritual it may be healing and help you to let go, if not, then it may help you to clarify a situation that is on your mind.

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