What is Addiction?

    Three-Legged Stool

    The three-legged stool of addiction recovery.1:58

    It takes time and effort to recover from addiction—there is no quick fix. In order to make a full recovery, your mind, body, and spirit each need changing and healing. Through the power of Jesus Christ, your entire being can be renewed. There is hope for a fresh start.

    If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, find help at addictionrecovery.lds.org.


      It takes a long time to heal from an addiction. There is no quick fix. A full recovery involves the mind, body, and spirit. Like three legs of a stool, when one leg becomes weak and wobbly, it affects the other two. In order for recovery to be effective, all legs must be fully functioning and equally strong. To heal, we have to stop lying and rationalizing our actions. We must stop negative thoughts, improve our self-esteem, and believe in our ability to change. We have to learn a whole new way of looking at the world and how we think about ourselves in it.

      Healing our bodies starts with detoxing, or recovering from any physical dependency we may have developed. We need to change how we cope with negative emotions like shame, boredom, anger, loneliness, and the stress of daily life. For some, recovery may include medications taken under medical supervision. Changing our spirit means understanding our true worth in God's sight. We can begin to heal by humbling ourselves, seeking God's grace and forgiveness, and submitting our will to His.

      As we come to know our Heavenly Father, we let Him strengthen us through the grace of His Son, Jesus Christ. This power is what can free us from addiction and allows us to keep progressing as sons and daughters of God. Recovery is never easy. We should not get discouraged if we continue to have cravings. This doesn't mean you haven't made any progress or that you will never get better. There is always hope, and it's a lifelong pursuit. If you or someone you love has a problem, get help. Want to learn more about addiction? Find help at addictionrecovery.lds.org.