The Two Paths
A great 20-minute analysis by Rabbi YY Jacobson
In a nutshell:
There are real human needs. If we're missing those needs, we feel a void, which causes us pain. In such a case, we can do one of two things:
1) Address the needs and fill the void and go back to a state of happiness.
2) Deal only with the pain we feel, by numbing the pain with some pleasurable experience.
Number 1 is hard, requires sacrifice and can take time. But it deals with the root of the issue and solves it, bringing us back to a state of happiness.
Number 2 feels good, it eliminates the pain, but it gets us nowhere. And then we just need more of the 'drug' to numb the pain.