If we begin to think of addictions as learned skill sets that come to be preferred patterns of action, what happens if we find a generalized pattern of behavior that works more effectively? If we create a new set of behaviors, beliefs or experiences that serve the purposes of social integration, positive self-regard, transcendence, etc., what happens to the addiction?
One of the interesting facets of the interface between the concepts of addiction-as-disease and addiction-as-skill-set is that you never really lose a skill. Once it’s learned, it can always be revived. It may take a little practice but, like bicycle riding, it is always there. How does this differ from the chronic nature of addictions? If addiction is the skill of solving every problem by artificially, and momentarily transcending it, is it unreasonable that when other strategies fail, the problem behavior recurs? Just so, IF THE NEW BEHAVIORS ARE SUFFICIENTLY REWARDING, THE OLD SKILL MAY NEVER BE NEEDED AGAIN. NLP Comprehensive-Addiction by Richard Gray, Ph.D.