Monday, 11 July 2016

Stop Your Addiction to Stealing by Identifying the Problem

Some people steal once or twice in their lives, while others can't stop themselves from stealing things on a regular basis. It seems that in today's society, stealing has become a regular thing.

Some people steal because they do not have money to buy things themselves, but others are addicted and love the thrill! Stealing leads to serious punishment, such as being thrown in jail and ending up with a criminal record. 

Stealing is still not thought of as an addiction, however when you think about it Kleptomania is a control disorder that may leave you feeling guilty. So, stealing should infact be identified as an addiction.

If you want to deal with the problem of stealing, you first have to identify the problem, look for help, change your thoughts and educate yourself.

1. Understand that you deserve help. It is important to know that you are worthy because many individuals with guilt (including shame about stealing) may not believe that they deserve help. This often prevents them from seeking assistance. You do deserve help and understanding, and you are not alone. NICRO is a non-profit organization that is committed to turning lives around – contact NICRO today and we can help you!

2. Define your stealing behaviours. It is important to first identify the specific reasons why you steal in order to begin to change this behaviour.
  •  Do you steal for an emotional high? Do you feel initial tension, then a thrill of excitement that builds up prior to the theft and relief after it's done? Is this then followed by feeling guilt, shame and remorse? These are some signs that stealing may be a problem for you.
  •  Do you steal to escape? When stealing, do you feel different, as if you're not yourself or you're not in touch with reality? This is a fairly common state of feeling for individuals who steal.

3. Write out your feelings. After you've discovered what drives your stealing behaviours, try free writing about your need to steal. Don't censor your feelings – everything you think about or feel is important to note.

Be sure to name the feelings, such as anger, fear, sadness, loneliness, being creeped out, exposed, vulnerable, etc. that accompany the need to steal.

4. Determine the consequences. Thinking about the consequences of your behaviours can help to reduce impulsivity. If you have been nearly caught, or have been caught (or caught several times), write all of this down. Also write down your own subsequent feelings, such as shame and guilt, and the actions you use to try to cope with these feelings or remorse or disgust, such as drinking too much, destroying the things you've stolen, or other destructive actions.

If you have been caught, how strong were the accompanying feelings? Why do you feel that even being caught isn't enough to overcome the need to steal? Write it all down.

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