How to Build a Battle Plan Against Caffeine Addiction
Win the war against addiction
You’ve finally done it. You’ve decided to give up caffeine once and for all. That’s great, and well done; but where to start? What’s needed to succeed?
In this article we’ll walk through the process of creating a plan that will help you to conquer your caffeine addiction!
Wanting to Quit
We all know that addictions are difficult to overcome. Many addicts want to give up their addiction but find it too difficult to let go of the temporary satisfaction that giving into their addiction brings.
Unfortunately when someone is under the influence of an addiction it becomes difficult to think logically, which in turn leads them to act irrationally and continue to depend on a substance that they know is doing harm to themselves.
It’s Difficult to Stay the Course
Caffeine addiction is so effective because it tricks the brain into releasing dopamine and serotonin.
Dopamine activates the pleasure or reward centers of the brain. When an activity releases dopamine, the brain makes an association between the action and pleasure, which if abused can lead to addiction.
Serotonin acts as a mood regulator, and is known for inducing good moods and happiness. The body needs tryptophan (an essential amino acid) to produce it. Sources of tryptophan include eggs, salmon and nuts. Because caffeine is known to increase the production of serotonin, natural levels of serotonin will feel less than adequate.
The fact that these two chemicals are affected by caffeine may explain why when people try giving it up they feel some if not all of the following:
- Low energy
Many people that are trying to quit caffeine fail, and feel bad about it. Some feel so bad that they flat out wont try to quit again, believing that they are just more naturally addicted to caffeine.
However, everyone has the potential to beat a caffeine addiction, it’s just that they underestimate how difficult it can be.
There is no one thing that can beat an addiction, rather it takes planning and numerous strategies to overcome it, some of which are outlined below.
- If you are in a work environment, try starting your caffeine abstinence on a weekend.
That way you can go through some of the withdrawal without the temptation of watching others drinking coffee or energy drinks.
- Share your struggles with others.
Join a social media group dedicated to fellow caffeine addicts to get nonjudgmental encouragement and support. They are also often a goldmine of info and resources that can help make the withdrawal easier.
- Be aware of your tiredness.
When you are tired it is easier to relapse back into old habits. For me I replaced waking up in the morning and reaching for a coffee, with reaching for water to drink. I also use a tiredness Apple Watch app called V-CAF . It alerts me when I’m most likely to be tired so I can take preventative measures.
- Seek professional help – councilors and doctors can help with advice and in extreme cases medication.
- Take it a day at a time.
Track your progression using a chart or journal so that you can see the progress you are making. The charts and journal can also help you on your weak days to remind you that you’ve done it before and can do it again.
Addictions are very complex. There are no known magic bullets that can slay the beast. However, there are positive steps that you can take to battle and win.
- Choose to take action and commit, and then plan.
- If you are starting your abstinence, start on a weekend.
- Join a social media caffeine addicts support group.
- Be aware of your tiredness and use a tool like V-CAF.
- Seek professional help.
- Keep a journal or chart your progress.
Taking charge of your response to caffeine addiction goes a long way in helping you to overcome it.
Use the techniques in this article as a starting point, but to get the best results make it personal to you.
You can do it 🙂