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The Addictive Personality: Understanding the Addictive Process and Compulsive Behavior
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The Addictive Personality: Understanding the Addictive Process and Compulsive Behavior

3.92  ·  Rating Details ·  296 Ratings  ·  21 Reviews
Second Edition
Since its publication in 1988, The Addictive Personality has helped people understand the process of addiction. Now, through this second edition, author Craig Nakken brings new depth and dimension to our understanding of how an individual becomes an addict. Going beyond the definition that limits dependency to the realm of alcohol and other drugs, Nakken unco
Paperback, 144 pages
Published September 18th 1996 by Hazelden (first published January 1st 1988)
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Jan 05, 2016 Jacob rated it liked it
This book, which looks similar to Addictive Thinking: Understanding the Addictive Process and Compulsive Behavior, covers more of the behavorial side of addiction. The author's main idea is that an alternate personality, The Addict, develops for some people and addiction comes when that personality beats the original into submission and takes over. His advice for therapy is to bring the original back out and encourage the individual to act in ways that don't allow The Addict to reassert control. ...more
John Martindale
Apr 16, 2013 John Martindale rated it it was amazing
It is truly refreshing to hear someone else eloquently voice many observations I've made concerning my own experience and those of others. Craig Nakken did an excellent job of explaining the addictive process and the horrible consequences, over and over again I thought he hit the nail square on the head. i liked for example how he pointed out that a terrible part of addiction is it results in one no longer seeing people as valuable individuals, but rather as objects, mere means to selfish ends. ...more
Chelsea Jennings
Dec 01, 2013 Chelsea Jennings rated it it was amazing
Excellent. Explains what addiction is and how it operates better than anything out there. Should be required reading for all people. Should be taught in middle school. Warning: do not judge this book by it's cover. It does NOT posit that there are certain people who are predisposed to addiction because they have the "personality" for it. Quite the opposite, it lays out clearly and systematically how addiction begins and can happen to anyone, and how the addictive personality is something that is ...more
Dec 08, 2007 Catherine rated it really liked it
While I'm not big on most alcoholism/addiction/self-help books, this one was both fascinating and helpful to me in its central theses about personality types and the destructive quest for happiness. While my personal experience leads me to question the author's description of the "stages" of addiction, and what he includes in the realm of "addictions" seems positively comical, the basic thesis of the book is a brilliantly resonant speculation on the essential core of addictive behavior.
Steve Lee Sr
Nov 04, 2013 Steve Lee Sr rated it it was amazing
There's so much I never knew...

Just when I think I'm getting out, they pull me back in! The many aspects of the addictive personality are complex and TRICKY. The chances of understanding how it all works, apart from an excellent book like this, are remote.

The addictive personality that develops within some of us, replaces the "true" self and will go to great lengths to survive, even giving-up one addiction for another, just to remain in control.

I am so glad I read this book. It gives a clear vie
Efi Zeibeki
Aug 20, 2016 Efi Zeibeki rated it did not like it
Author brings new depth and dimension to our understanding of how an individual becomes an addict.
I don't see the ''how'' here at all. Neither depth! I see some very one-dimensional, totally rigid explanation of the addicted person that whatever they do is bad, bad and (guess what!), bad!
There is absolutely no explanation of the real causes that lead to addiction. Some personal ones are mentioned but what about social ones? And that's it, they're just mentioned. It's like the person is expecte
Matthew Laurenceau
Mar 09, 2016 Matthew Laurenceau rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Individuals suffering from addiction or family members being affected by addiction
I found this book to be enlightening regarding the stages of how addiction begins and then evolves into the monster that it becomes. It provided a lot of insight on the nature of addiction and the root causes of why one would develop into or be prone to becoming an addict. This book relies a lot on the use of AA in helping the addict on the road to recovery, and I was somewhat indifferent to this. I did, however, like how the author stressed the need to reconnect with one's Self, their ...more
Jun 14, 2016 Nathan rated it liked it
Pretty good introduction to addiction. It's not very comprehensive and sophisticated, but then again it is probably not supposed to be. Someone with an addict in the family, or just looking to learn more about addiction will find this is a good place to start. It deals more with the social dimension of addiction and uses metaphor to explain addictive impulses. This method is helpful for people in recovery or trying to understand their own addictive tendencies. Recommended for people looking for ...more
Aug 12, 2014 Calvin rated it liked it
At first I thought it was a rather dull read but as I kept reading I noticed that the author is quite insightful. The addictive element of a person fragments his character into two parts - the addict self and the normal self. This book also taught that recovery is a life-long process. I am glad I read it.
Jan 14, 2013 Fed rated it really liked it
I was fairly new to this subject and this book helped me understanding the "law of magnetism" of people with addictions + the compulsions. Useful for anyone who wants to counsel especially because it is written by a counselor who knows what works.
Kelsie Augustin
I considered this a very good book because personally, I too have an addictive personality for affection.
horace dudley jr.

Much needed in recovery. Awesome take on the addictive personality. Much to think about. I recommend it. Quick read and straight to the point.
Rita Nunez
Jul 05, 2014 Rita Nunez rated it it was amazing
This book offers so much more than the scientific script that books typically provide. I'm sorry I didn't come across it sooner. Very interesting and thought provoking.
Marjolein Mooij
Jul 03, 2013 Marjolein Mooij rated it it was amazing
Fantastic book! The book really helped me to understand myself and my addiction and I have been doing great sins i have read this book. It worked for me!
Heather Moselle
May 02, 2013 Heather Moselle rated it it was amazing
What can I say. This is a must-read for anyone who is, or knows someone struggling with addiction. Perfectly clear and truthful; a concise read.
Georgina Haller
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“Self. Through a caring relationship with ourselves we learn self-nurturing—the ability to love ourselves and see ourselves as one resource we can turn to during times of difficulty. It’s through a relationship with ourselves that we learn the most about change, either positive or negative. As we watch and interact with ourselves, we see our vast potential for change. It’s through a caring relationship with ourselves that we learn to be caring and patient with others. The relationship we have with ourselves is carried in some form to all our other relationships.” 0 likes
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