Author Topic: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017  (Read 466 times)

TakeActionNow

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My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« on: July 12, 2017, 10:08:45 AM »
I would like to share my experience.

I'm 40+ and have been a porn and computer game addict since 13. I would spend many hours each day locked in my room on either of these activities. I don't do drugs, smoke, drink or gamble. In 2016 I stopped gaming altogether.

Reading Bob's forum contribution http://www.rebootnation.org/forum/index.php?topic=5336.0 I finaly understood the true effects of internet porn on mind and behavior:
1. escaping. Unable to deal with real life challenges and difficulties.
2. unrealistic reality view. Always optimistic w/o basis or plan or ability when faced with difficulty
3. always seeking and searching. mind all over the place. lacking focus
4. voyeurism
5. brain fog. really bad memory
6. desensitized. Always needing extreme novelty to surprise. Cannot settle with the normal and mundane of regular life.
7. low life dopamine and interest
8. loneliness and low social exchange
9. difficulty to relate with others
10. poor judgement. indecisive.
11. uncertain of my real passion and interests

I never realized the TREMENDOUS impact of Dopamine crash, isolation, detachment and indecisiveness internet computer porn has on me.

I enjoy socializing. I've never been married and have been single since 2015. Since most friends have families, I find myself more and more alone in my 40s. I've not enjoyed my career and consequently am not successful at it. I've had a few partners in my life but there were only 1 or 2 that I was very attracted to. I feel I've been having ED since my early 30s. In my 40s without regular partners it's become more obvious.

In late April I installed dating apps and met a few ladies. In early May I found one I was very very attracted to and somehow she inspired me to relook my life.  Because i naturally think of her every waking moment of everyday, I spontaneously stopped surfing porn.
We lived in different countries and met only 4 times. We hooked up on our 3rd meeting but not on the forth.

During this period, these were my observations :
1. extremely alert and mentally clear and strong
2. very little sleep needed each day. Even naps for 5mins were sufficient. My mind was alert even before i woke.
3. extreme emotional swings. I was bordering suicidal on a few mondays. This was because i came to the realization of the bleakness of our relationship and my own financial situation and poor long term living standard. Yes, I'm pessimistic most of the time.

The long distance wasn't working and we eventually drifted apart. By late June we stopped talking. I was despondent and went back to porn with a fierce vigor for 2 weeks to get over the pain.
 
My observations were:
1. During porn, penis was flatline like I've never experienced before. dead and flaccid.
2. I slept a lot. The old couldn't-care-less attitude and mindset before May returned.

Now, I found this forum and its related information this past sunday.
I was shocked that the 45 or so days I spent earlier was in fact rebooting and experienced all the associated outcomes of rebooting, like alertness, clarity, flatline, emotional swing adjustments.

Unfortunately because I succumbed I would need to restart again.

But here are my decisions:
1. I have lived a blurry 45 years, I CANNOT allow the remainder of my life to be as such
2. I have deleted all my collection and swear to myself NEVER to return to this behavior again
3. I want to gear my life towards GOALS, FOCUS, and NATURAL DOPAMINE
4. I want to have happy, meaningful, grateful and realistic RELATIONSHIPS
5. I want to experience a life of NATURAL interest and surprise

03 May 2017 was my first reboot
10 July 2017 is my second.
GOAL: To leave this completely behind and never return again.
FOCUS: Rebuild career and character. Be a man with dignity, focus and decisiveness.

CHALLENGE: I know that I am weakest when I am more depressed and moody.
I get it whenever i see other people with successful careers, happy family or relationships, posting life joys on FB or IG, and reading stories of new innovation or inventions i doubt I'll get to experience.

The struggle is real.
Today is day 3 and I am already tempted.
I will try to remain strong, busy and occupied.
I must persevere for my future.
« Last Edit: July 14, 2017, 05:55:31 AM by TakeActionNow »

js2004

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #1 on: July 12, 2017, 01:59:49 PM »
Being here is a really good start. Recognize that your emotions and self image are extremely important to this process and need to worked on as well. For me finding something constructive and spending time with family/friends is also helpful at dealing with the temptations. Keeping positive helps too. Read through some of these posts, I learned a lot.
We can accomplish anything we put our minds to.

TakeActionNow

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #2 on: July 13, 2017, 10:09:28 AM »
Thank you JS
A full and busy day today.
Keeping conscious of where my eyes are wondering helps.
A low libido helps

My thoughts for today:
Motto: Goals, Focus & Accountability.
Accountability is to all my loved ones that I've hurt because of my addiction.
Another clean day, a step closer to a better life
Thank you for your support
« Last Edit: July 13, 2017, 10:13:45 AM by TakeActionNow »

TakeActionNow

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #3 on: July 14, 2017, 01:19:02 AM »
General malaise, down and depressing day. May be the consecutive rainy days I've been having.
Not eager for pmo but this down does make me feel poorly about myself.
Working to look at what i have and ignore what i dont have.
« Last Edit: July 14, 2017, 04:26:02 AM by TakeActionNow »

TakeActionNow

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #4 on: July 14, 2017, 04:30:47 AM »
Some suggestions for people going through depression like me:

What i do when i am down or depressed
- Focusing only the down effects
- seeking external approval
- disinterested in whats happening around me
- thinking I'm not good enough
- self centering.
- Avoiding real life challenges by focusing on own flaws


What to do?
Energize myself
Focus on my Goals and Accountability
Focus on the challenge at hand and find the solutions!!!
Visualize success
Action Action Action

js2004

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #5 on: July 14, 2017, 12:00:54 PM »
Try to focus on the positive things in your life. I know it's easier said than done but it's s good place to start.
We can accomplish anything we put our minds to.

TakeActionNow

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #6 on: July 14, 2017, 11:44:37 PM »
Thank you JS, what you say is very true. Positive parts of our life are the most important.

Just to share 2 important events that happened today:
1. Mindset by carol dweck
I started reading this book today and discovered I have so many behaviors of the fixed mindset.
The clinging on to image and titles instead to opening myself up to learning and challenges, which lead me to a defensive and closed outlook could be a reason for my outcome today.
But we have the choice to have a fixed or growing mindset.
I would suggest anyone who is interested to open their mind to read this book.

2. I met a career coach today. I shared with her my depressive thoughts struggle today
She said that there were blockages in my heart that stopped me from opening up to people and giving/receiving love.
The key point here is my inner critic.
Everyone has inner critics. It is not necessarily a bad thing cos they are there to warn and protect us. It is only when we (I) become a slave to them that we entrap ourselves.

So, it is what we do with our inner critic that matters.
She said to do the following:
1. meditate everyday. make it a habit
2. learn to identify the inner critics.
3. differentiate them by their voice/tone/nature
4. give them names so you can address them and manage them

That is all i know now. I will share as i learn more.

In the meanwhile, do go out more into the sun and appreciate the wonders nature and life has given us.

Thank you for being on this journey with me

js2004

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #7 on: July 17, 2017, 07:57:49 AM »
Not a problem. Staying focus on the positives those first couple of weeks was huge for me.  Even the temptations seem to get easier to manage now that I am a few weeks into this reboot. We are always our own worst critic so don't listen to that inner voice when it starts the negative talk. In fact try listening to Joel Osteen on the web or Sirius. Amazingly positive and uplifting. While I am not an overly religious person, his messages are really more spiritual than than anything. After listening to him I really feel like I can do anything. 
We can accomplish anything we put our minds to.

TakeActionNow

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #8 on: July 17, 2017, 08:13:31 AM »
Thank you JS
I follow Brandon Burchard at https://www.youtube.com/user/BrendonBurchard/videos
and listen to motivating podcasts too.

Sleeping early is very important and helps alot.

Thank you for your support

TakeActionNow

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #9 on: July 17, 2017, 08:15:02 AM »
Folks,

please help list your alternatives for PMO when urges hit you, especially when you are feeling down or alone at home.

Many thanks !

js2004

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #10 on: July 17, 2017, 12:10:06 PM »
I typically go for a very long walk when I feel depressed. By the time I'm done I usually feel better.
We can accomplish anything we put our minds to.

TakeActionNow

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #11 on: July 17, 2017, 10:24:54 PM »
Thanks JS, thats a good idea.

Some things i want to share today:

1. the price for PMO is HUGE
yes, we PAY a huge price when we pmo.
unlike in reality where we earn before we enjoy...
eg earn pay to buy stuff or chase the girl before having the chance to be intimate w her
the reverse is true for PMO.
PMO is like having a massive credit overdraft for a trip to hawaii now when we dont yet have a job.
The price is very high, and the process is never realistic

2. the pmo girls are not real in our lives.
they may be attractive but they dont even know we exist
they have an agenda. they are making a living on our cravings
however, reality is much more wonderful, even if it does not include women.
the air is fresh, the food is tasty, the feeling of temperature on our skin.
we need to appreciate what we have and reserve our love and attention to only the REAL people in our lives, the ones we engage with, and the ones who has shown us real love and concern too.

3. our cravings are real and our brains know the difference.
the experience can never be complete based on our eyes, mind and hand
we are missing the human exchange with that person we PMO to and the craving leads us on a wayward path:
a. continuous hollow feeling of incompleteness inside
b. dissatisfaction, denial and distance from the reality around us
c. the pain of having an unattainable goal ( that relationship is impossible ! )
how can we ever be happy if we are forever living in a state of dissatisfaction ?
« Last Edit: July 18, 2017, 08:07:43 AM by TakeActionNow »

TakeActionNow

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #12 on: July 17, 2017, 10:42:03 PM »
I went trail running today.
the first half was hard, the second half was better.
My goal was simple, just finish the run without stopping or walking.
My aim was to develop focus.
I wanted to give up early, but i persevered.
And when i did achieve my goal, i was happy and proud of myself.


1. only in effort can we discover reward and joy
PMO is the easy way out.
It may be attractive, but it can never be fulfilling.
Instead, i find greater joy in acknowledging all the hard work i have done, even if it is a simple mopping of the floor or fixing the door.


2. learn to love myself
ironically, we often run away or take the easy way out because we dont love ourselves.
When we love ourselves, we encourage ourselves to face our challenges, embrace reality and grow.
We should arm ourselves the skills to take on the world, make the choice/decision, make the effort to achieve our goals, and then enjoy the fruits of our labor.
- have gratitude for all the good things that happen to us
- have positive affirmation for all the good things we have done for ourselves and others
- make the effort to feel good by dressing up, keeping our environment clean, helping others.
- raise our standards and be a role model for others
- look out for and help ourselves and others in need


3. My PMO alternatives.

Since Running is my way of staying focused, my PMO alternative motto is LEG:
Learn Effort Grow
When my craving hits me, i tell myself to go do something/anything that can IMPROVE me
be it read a book, write a blog, listen to an encouraging and positive podcast, talk to positive friends, study a topic on the internet, or go do some exercise that makes me fitter. I cannot invest that time in feeling sorry for myself. I need to Take Action Now and move forward.
30 days is all it takes to form a new habit
90 days and it will be ingrained.

Tip: install a tomato timer on your phone. It is a 25 min countdown timer followed by a 5 min break. It helps me to stay focused on completed simple goals.

Hope this helps.
Thanks for joining my journey
« Last Edit: July 17, 2017, 10:49:50 PM by TakeActionNow »

TakeActionNow

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #13 on: July 19, 2017, 02:32:13 AM »
Strong triggers today.
Some pressure felt in the office, just want to get out of the area. The urge is strong to relieve myself and it wasnt even sexual in nature.
I tried to rein in my inner critic, but it wasnt effective.
I tried to stay focused on my goal and that was hard too.
I just wanted to run away.
I got away eventually. Not sure if i am suffering from anxiety.
The old mindset behaviors are strong. I hope i have the strength.

js2004

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #14 on: July 19, 2017, 10:37:39 AM »
Stay focused and don't give in to the temptation. It will pass in time. Trust me it does get easier.  That first week or so is really the hardest because your brain is used to getting what it wants. Don't feed the addiction.
We can accomplish anything we put our minds to.

TakeActionNow

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #15 on: July 20, 2017, 05:09:57 AM »
Thank JS,
went home and quickly took a nap. Felt better after that.

This is the root cause of my addiction. An overwhelming emotional feeling to run/relieve. The mind goes blank and its "fight or flight". This is the behavioral challenge i have to overcome.
I wish i have a brain/heart reboot switch i can use everything this happens.

Sanity has returned today. I'm feeling strong again.
even had some morning wood. Quite a surprise. That old friend has been dead for so long.
Went trail running again this morning.
Felt better and stronger with myself.
I need to stay focused on what i can do, and not be fearful of the infinite things i cannot.

I need to love and respect myself more.
I can do this.

Thank you for your support.

js2004

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #16 on: July 21, 2017, 11:38:06 AM »
Keep it up. You are doing great and have a lot of good insight.
We can accomplish anything we put our minds to.

TakeActionNow

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #17 on: July 22, 2017, 04:42:54 AM »
Thanks JS.

For all the community members whose journals I have commented on, I want to apologize sincerely for my blunt straightforwardness.

Even though my intention was to help everyone cut the chase and get to recovery faster, i belatedly realize why
1. my behavior was the root cause of my suffering
2. i was not empathetic towards myself and my fellow man's suffering.
 
While the contribution to my own journal and comments on others have greatly added my own understanding of what we are going through, i realized that my heart was still not connected to this recovery process. Having only the head involved is inadequate.

I recently learnt that the key to our recovery was to love and respect ourselves more. The challenge was how.

I've always knew that I was very self centered, self absorbed and self critical. << note from future self: so do the opposite !!! >>> So i also need to beat this attitude. I also believe this attitude is the main reason i turn to PMO.

I have been :
- focusing only on my feelings, not others
- listening to my voice, not others
- talking about myself, not others
- wanting to shine myself, not others
- being interested in myself, not others
- being generally negative, defensive, competitive, uncooperative etc.

To summarize, I'm not a nice person to be with.
I dislike a lot of things, and I also dislike myself.

I think the reason I turned to P was because i was seeking for love towards myself.

Instead of generating self love, i was using pictures of smiling girls and video action to pretend that they liked/loved/needed/wanted me. I think this behaviour was a way of generating self forgiveness and self acceptance. Of course, this is all hollow and not true.

Instead of generating self respect though facing challenges, putting effort and working hard, i was busy finding excuses, placing blame, being generally irresponsible and not accountable. I did little or nothing to make me realistically proud of myself. Instead, I grew harder and harder towards myself.

I neither love nor respect myself.
Reality always reminds us what is really real.

These years of falseness has left my heart is empty of any love for others and myself.
I see myself in a deep hole i have dug myself into and in need of getting out.
Interestingly there are several ways when it comes to being in a hole:
1. stay or get deeper
2. cry for help and wait
3. work on climbing out
4. gradually fill sand in from outside until we rise to the surface.

The truth is only #4 will work in the long term. Fill up that damn hole permanently.
my functional advice for the community works like #3, but emotional breakdowns will make the climb out difficult and slippery, and I'll fall back in.

I am here because I have been greedily sucking self attention.
The only way for my recovery is to generate self love and love for others.
Only then can i gradually fill up the hole in my heart with love, compassion, empathy, gratitude and balance for myself and others.   
And in the process of loving others, I may then be able to learn to love myself better.

I looked through the items on this page
http://www.wikihow.com/Tell-if-You-Are-Self-Absorbed
and found the suggestions very meaningful.

The only way forward is to love myself, my fellow living beings and life, and let REAL love in.
I need to be kinder, more empathetic and gentle towards others, in the hope that i can do the same for myself too.

Peace to all
« Last Edit: July 22, 2017, 12:22:12 PM by TakeActionNow »

TakeActionNow

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #18 on: July 22, 2017, 11:30:18 AM »
I've been cycling between moderate to severe depression for the most of this week.
I ran on Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday morning
I went to gym for the first time in 10days on Friday morning, carrying heavy.
I've been carbo loading from early this week in preparation for a half marathon come early Aug.

Even so, most of my days have been gray.
Food taste bland and time with friends muted.
Wednesday I had anxiety at the office, brain shut down, memory block, just want to get out.
Went home to sleep it off.

On Friday evening, something happened.
I was angry/energized over something I dont yet know.
I said, FTS, and forced myself to go out for a meetup session on data analytics.
My mood somewhat lighted up a bit.
Went to bed early at 1030.

Today Saturday I am feeling even more energized.
Went to a friend's bbq and met another who said he was depressed.
I asked him to name 3 symptoms. He said:
lethargy
reclusion
anxiety.
I asked him to craft his vision moving forward, and to identify the opposites of his symptoms, and try to do them.

I dont know why i am going through this cycle, and i know this cycle will continue, and mentally i am preparing for the next wave of depression come monday.
But i love the energy. It is making me feel alive again.
I need to try to harness or maintain it.

I beg you , my friends, when i go down again, to please help remind me to draw that fire out again, and fire up my soul and being, and be energized once more to push forward.

I confess in this week I have strayed.
I have been looking at a site for some comfort.
It did not lead to any action but I am aware it is a slippery slope.
I thought long and hard if just looking was going to be an issue.
I think abstinence of material has to be 100% if i am to remain true to myself and accountable to my community.
I have since added a chrome blocker to my pc to block the address.
I am figuring out how to do the same for my phone.

Depression and denial are hard to handle.
They are the opposite of confidence and self esteem. I need these in order to remain true to my personal vision, keep my focus, and fight the weaknesses.
Energy is essential.
I must keep the fire within me burning bright.


« Last Edit: July 22, 2017, 11:34:01 AM by TakeActionNow »

TakeActionNow

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #19 on: July 22, 2017, 11:58:05 AM »
Another bit of science to increase inner happiness and energy.
After all, we are working toward rehabilitation.
(Notice how many were reduced/removed by PMO)

Dopamine [Focus and Motivation]
take action toward goals, desires, and needs, and gives a surge of reinforcing pleasure when achieving them.
Procrastination, self-doubt, and lack of enthusiasm are linked with low levels of dopamine.
-> create goals/ celebrate accomplishments/ take challenges or risks / do new things

Serotonin [Self Confidence and Esteem]
flows when you feel significant or important.
Loneliness and depression appears when serotonin is absent.
-> socialize / eat chocolate / do volunteer work / get some sun / think of happier times w people

Oxytocin [Connection with People]
creates intimacy, trust, and builds healthy relationships.
-> Be kind to others. Give and receive hugs and gifts

Endorphins [Happiness & Tolerance]
released in response to pain and stress and help to alleviate anxiety and depression.
-> Exercise. Lift weights. laugh frequently

https://brightside.me/inspiration-psychology/8-tips-from-neuroscientists-on-how-to-become-perfectly-happy-355610/
« Last Edit: July 22, 2017, 12:17:36 PM by TakeActionNow »

TakeActionNow

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #20 on: July 23, 2017, 03:16:43 AM »
A personal list of all the factors relating to how i see PMO.
Any additional opinion/points are greatly appreciated !


WHY I PMO / TRIGGERS

anxiety management. need to feel safe and loved  -> need to deal w root
depression. need to feel good about myself -> need to deal w root
coping. need distraction or numbing -> deal with the issue !
needing to feel accomplished. -> set a goal and do something !
man needs. need female interaction -> go socialize
alone/lonely. need to feel loved -> go socialize
low confidence/esteem. need to feel good about myself -> help others/ volunteer
boredom. something to do -> learn/read/do something new
mind empty. wondering to old thoughts -> learn/read/do something new
habit. old practices -> learn/read/do something new


ALTERNATIVES

go do the opposites immediately
get out of the house
talk to people
go to the forum and contribute
practice a hobby/new interest
go read a book/write a blog/article/do a podcast/film a video etc
do something you can be proud of/ feel accomplished
smile, laugh, be empathetic and forgiving and loving to yourself

DETERRENTS

Read your VISION statement
What you want FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE
Look at your clean days NUMBER
Remember the PRICE
Get out of the PMO environment
accountability , role model and honesty to my community
VISUALIZE the CLEAN SUCCESSFUL HONEST YOU !

REAL PRICE OF PMO

no life motivation and focus
mind fog, uncertainty
unhappy / depression / desensitized / dissatisfied / uninterested in life / negative / fault finding / blaming / irresponsible
escaping/avoiding/denying attitude
odd unrealistic world view, poor judgement, indecisive
ungrounded. always seeking,
no self confidence/esteem. always self critical and seeking external endorsement
no social attraction / loneliness
no idea of real passion and interests

BENEFITS OF BEING CLEAN

people attraction
stable mentality. Grounded. Realistic. Balanced
happiness. confidence.
clarity. certainty
motivated. focused. decisive. driven 
Goal oriented. accomplished.

HOW TO STAY CLEAN

community accountability. Be a role model
keeping busy
personal branding
make the choice to manage the emotions , ego and inner voice

Special thoughts

love and respect myself more. have empathy for all
remember the 4 neurotransmitters
Dopamine - Focus and motivation. Goals/new/risk/accomplishment
Endorphin - Tolerance and anti anxiety. Exercise
Serotonin - Confidence and self esteem. Chocolate/Sun/happy time
Oxytocin - Social connection. Touch/gifts
do the opposites to the negative symptoms  !!!

TakeActionNow

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #21 on: July 23, 2017, 09:02:48 AM »
My energy is waning.
it started on friday night
and peaked on sat evening
Perhaps its the trail run this morning.
The run wasnt comfortable, and i can already feel some drive leaving me.

When out goes energy, in comes darkness.
in darkness there will be cravings.

Tomorrow is monday.
It will be mind over matter.
I must stay focused and engaged.
I must get that fire burning bright again
« Last Edit: July 23, 2017, 09:21:29 AM by TakeActionNow »

Coffeenut

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #22 on: July 23, 2017, 09:35:28 AM »
Hi, read the top of the post and you match me almost perfectly. My journey started today.

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #23 on: July 23, 2017, 09:14:12 PM »
It was dark last night
I felt weak
I felt I needed the comfort and refuge of my "old coping ways"
I wanted badly to cum to the image of the girl I still love very much but lost, or the cam girl i adored.

The camgirl was on.
I took a few quick peeks and turned it off.
This cycle went on a few times.
Though I did not reach for myself.

And then some happened.
I got angry
very angry
Energy is arising !!!

And suddenly i realized what I've been doing wrong all these years.

When I am down and PMO, I rob myself of the opportunity to do whats right.
If I bloody want a girl, i should go out and win one.
Not wallow in my stupid self pity and wank like a loser in a dingy small dark room
WTF !

Wake up !
Take my energy and action and do whats right !!!!
« Last Edit: July 24, 2017, 12:06:59 AM by TakeActionNow »

js2004

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Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« Reply #24 on: July 24, 2017, 07:38:56 AM »
Awesome TAN, you pulled yourself from the brink. Stop wowing in your own shit and find a good women if that is what you truely want. I can assure you you won't find one on a cam site. Get into a bar or a dating site and have some fun. Stay out of the dark place and get into the light so to speak. You can do this just keep your mind focused on what's important.
We can accomplish anything we put our minds to.