There are a lot of people out there who do not even think of weed as being a real addiction. They consider it to be a “soft drug” and not really worthy of the label of addiction. For the most part, there are generally no withdrawal symptoms when someone stops smoking weed, and there is very little evidence of physical dependence. So it gets passed off all the time as being somehow less than other “real drugs.”
This is a big mistake because Marijuana is a real drug and it can seriously screw up your life. For a moment, forget about the fact that weed is illegal, or that it is physically unhealthy to smoke, or that it can impair your driving, and so on. Forget all those arguments for a moment because they are besides the point.
Here are the 3 main problems with weed addiction:
1) You are medicating your feelings, just like with any other mood or mind altering substance (such as alcohol, cocaine, etc.).
2) You are dedicating your life to a hollow purpose.
3) Your ambitions and motivation is being sapped by your drug habit.
If you smoke weed every day then all 3 of these factors can be applied to your life. They will all exist for you in some form or another. Let’s take a closer look at these 3 problems.
Smoking weed medicates your feelings
One of the things about a chemical addiction, be it alcohol or any other drug, is that eventually we are using the chemical to medicate our feelings with. Now this doesn’t always happen overnight but it always happens in the end. We might not start out using a drug with the intention of medicating our feelings but we develop the pattern over time.
Why does this happen? Because our drug of choice becomes our coping mechanism. If we are a drinker, then every time we experience drama in our life or get upset over something, what do we do? We reach for a drink, of course. The same is true with other drugs of abuse. Those who smoke weed will naturally want to get high when they are faced with any sort of emotional upheaval in their lives. And when we keep doing this over time, it establishes a form of dependency. We might not be physically addicted to weed but we are addicted to using it as a coping mechanism. We become comfortable with using weed to mask our true feelings when we don’t want to feel them.
Why is this a problem? Well, it can become a problem for many people if they continue to use weed as a way to cope. It creates a dependency and results in emotional immaturity. We basically stunt our emotional growth because we are no longer facing reality when we need to; instead we are coping out and just getting high. It is actually a very immature way to go through life and it certainly doesn’t keep you “real.”
Eventually, if you ever decide to quit smoking weed (or become forced to due to the legal ramifications) then you are going to have to relearn how to deal with your emotions.
Your life purpose is diverted
Another reason that weed addiction is a problem for people is because it diverts your life purpose. Essentially, when you start smoking weed on a regular basis and get caught up in the lifestyle of doing so, your entire life purpose shifts to those activities. Getting high and scoring more weed becomes your purpose in life and any other dreams that you might have had about accomplishing anything are basically shelved.
A lot of people who smoke weed stay in denial about this, because they maintain that they still have dreams and they still have goals. This is usually a form of denial though because now that they are full time weed smokers they are no longer actively pursuing those goals and dreams. They are complacent with their life.
The habit of smoking weed creates a certain lifestyle and that lifestyle becomes your life purpose. It becomes difficult to pursue anything outside of this relatively limited world view.
Weed addiction destroys your ambition
If you want to sit around all day and be lazy then smoking weed is one way to accomplish this. The lifestyle prevents you from doing things because eventually all things must be accompanied with getting high. This starts to limit what you can typically do throughout your day and this is also what starts to shape the lifestyle for you. In essence, you are what you do all day. Not only does weed addiction take away your dreams and goals, but it also demotivates you from achieving any goals that you might still have intact.
Because smoking weed has become central to your reward system, you no longer have to pursue other typical rewards that might come from achieving positive goals in your life, such as with exercise, health habits, or learning goals. There is no reason to push yourself to grow in any of those ways because the rewards for doing so have been reduced in comparison to your “weed reward.” In other words, because you are in the habit of rewarding yourself with weed, other rewards in life become less desirable for you.
The justifications don’t matter
There are a million reasons out there about why smoking weed should be legal and why it is less harmful than alcohol and so on and so forth.
None of it matters.
Weed is still harmful and addictive and it still destroys your life, even if it does so in a more subtle way than “harder drugs.” This subtlety is what makes it so dangerous. Even if the drug were legal it would not be any less problematic for people.
Smoking weed saps your life away a little bit at a time.