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Journals => Ages 40 and up => Topic started by: Gabriel1960 on March 04, 2016, 08:39:03 PM

Title: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 04, 2016, 08:39:03 PM
New here.  Glad I found this place.  Thanks to the moderators for this website.
I was talking yesterday with my therapist when I mentioned, for the first time in 22 years of PMO recovery, that I had learned that what I was really addicted to was not the PMO, but what they call on www.yourbrainonporn.com the "neuro-chemical auto pilot."
That's when he recommended to me the book "Your Brain on Porn," which I ordered yesterday.
How I got to this new realization was from attending Gamblers Anonymous (GA) meetings.  In GA, we acknowledge that it's not the wagering that is the problem.  The problem is the "action."  Action is the addiction, and what we're powerless over.  (Action being the trance like state a gambler enters into when we're gambling.)
I now realize that what my problem is:  the "neuro-chemical auto pilot."  Everything else is merely window dressing for it.
That's all I have today.  Thanks again for this web presence. 
Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 05, 2016, 04:21:43 AM
I came to the realization recently that I needed a moderated forum to discuss the PMO issue. 
I've been attending face-to-face PMO meetings since 1994.  One of the difficulties that I encountered from the beginning was the experience in PMO recovery of those members who suffer from what is known as "Boarderline Personality Disorder (BPD)."   I have a good friend who suffers from BPD, so I'm not judging here.
The problem is that men and women with BPD feel compelled to share with you their deepest, darkest, PMO related experiences (a.k.a. drop bombs) almost immediately upon meeting a total stranger.   :-\ 
They're the guys that drop the most horrifying bombs on you upon meeting you for the first time.    :-[
After dropping their bomb on you, these guys then decide that they must therefore shun you, because anyone who knows such a horrifying tidbit about them, (that they have voluntarily disclosed!) is obviously a mortal enemy.   :o
You get the picture.
The neat thing about a moderated forum: these men can be counseled, and if they can't stop themselves from bomb dropping, will be asked to move on. 
That gives the rest of us some breathing room to get on with our busy, productive lives.   :)  :)  :)
Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: hans32 on March 05, 2016, 04:38:13 AM
Thnks for your insights and experience and welcome aboard!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 05, 2016, 04:46:02 AM
BTW, the movie "Deadpool" makes great comedic fun of bomb dropping and bomb droppers.  (No spoilers here.)
There is a scene where Deadpool is talking to his new girlfriend, Vanessa, sharing that he was molested by his Uncle, when she responds:  "Well, I was molested by all of my Uncles." and it goes on from there, each trying to outdo the other in bomb dropping. 
Hilarious!
Deadpool:  "I live in a crack house."
Vanessa:  "Wait....you have a house?"
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 05, 2016, 09:40:05 AM
I'm feeling pretty optimistic today.   8)  I can relate it back to finding this suite of websites and support options.
I can only imagine how different my life would have been had these websites been available back in the early 1990's.
I sense some government funding here.  My only comment:  What took mankind so long?    :)
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 05, 2016, 08:48:08 PM
It's worth mentioning that I just came back from one of the best gym workouts that I've had in many years.  I guess I'm feeling optimistic about the future again.
Thanks,
Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: now-man on March 06, 2016, 12:01:31 AM
Hi Gabriel, Welcome! Really glad you're here. You'll find this is a really supportive community, you'll find a lot of awesome guys here.  Feel free to reach out, private message, post often, post on other's threads. You never know who may find what you've written helpful. I look forward to following your journey.  Thanks for joining in! Keep going man.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 06, 2016, 11:06:08 AM
Thanks Now-man.  Your support is both needed and appreciated.

I need to bring up a serious problem I've encountered all my adult life with this no PMO thing....

This is a problem that is, ironically, very common for those of us who have also decided to give up booze and drugs.   A "side effect," if you will.

I have a chronic serious problem with too many, and too frequent erections.  Sounds like a non-issue?  It's a problem.  Most of my friends who gave up booze and drugs have the same problem.

This morning I, a 55 year old adult male, woke up with a raging morning wood.   A cat couldn't scratch it.  Obviously, you older guys who are off PMO can relate.   I had just had sex six hours earlier!

It's both painful, and annoying.  The quick answer, of course, in today's high speed internet society is simply to PMO. 

Not a good idea. 

I guess, that's where this suite of websites come in.  This suite is giving me the ammunition I need to blog through this problem.  It seems to be helping.

The silver lining is that I will never, ever need Viagra. 

It's kind of ironic.  I gave up booze and drugs to avoid PMO, and it has only increased my cravings for PMO.  I've heard other men who gave up booze and drugs complain of the same thing.  Sometimes, the increased urges drive men back to the bottle.  I have watched that happen with several friends.   They say the main reasons why men relapse on booze and drugs is "romance and finance."  This is serious stuff.

Thanks for listening.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 06, 2016, 12:55:46 PM
OK, so I'm not gonna lie.  It's going to be a challenge to weave this suite of websites into my daily recovery approach.  I've also got a full time job, and am finishing a Masters Degree. 

I already have a full plate.  I've never been a daily blogger. 

But I'm going to give it the old college try.

Thanks,

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 06, 2016, 01:16:15 PM
My biggest problem is that I have just too high a sex drive.  It is what it is.  My ex-wife always said that she could picture me being married to a woman who bore me six children. 

Yes.  I have a very high sex drive.  I always have.  That is my curse. 

I am active in my Church, do a lot of volunteer work, engage in daily meditation, have a job that requires OT, and am finishing a Masters Degree.  I guess I'm doing everything possible to burn off all of the excess sex drive energy that I have.

What about getting a dog?  Do you think having a dog would help?

Thanks.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 06, 2016, 01:38:48 PM
Thanks Leon.  I am in the presence of giants.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: now-man on March 06, 2016, 01:54:56 PM
Hey Gabriel, I don't think a dog will keep you from PMOing, and it sounds like your plate is pretty full, and a dog takes a lot of time and focus - So, my thought is: get a dog if getting a dog is what is really up for you right now. But not as a strategy for avoiding PMO.

Also, thanks for your words about alcohol and the boner effect. I'm not an alcoholic but I've noticed I just naturally have been drinking less since getting further into my reboot. Your post encourages me to keep it up (looking forward to more 'keeping it up'). I won't complain about excess erections at 55 - you da man! ;)
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 06, 2016, 02:02:41 PM
Thanks Now-man.

Excess erections sounds a lot nicer than they are.

"Be careful what you wish for, for you may get it."   Norman Vincent Peale

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 06, 2016, 09:28:43 PM
I'm starting to see a pattern here.  We have successes with the disease, and it opens up our world.    We start to feel bullet proof, get cocky, and relapse. 

That's my biggest concern today....how to not become over confident.

I'm tired of losing.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 07, 2016, 09:07:19 AM
I'm having a good day today.  I'm kind of on a "pink cloud" after finding this suite of websites. 

Recently, it had gotten to the point where I didn't want to be alone at home, because I couldn't predict the outcome with the PMO thing.  Last month I had a day where PMO lasted twelve solid hours.  Having that experience really made me afraid to be me.

I don't see that happening today. 

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 07, 2016, 10:22:51 AM
I feel like I've just been cured of brain cancer.   

This, too, shall pass, but I'm going to enjoy this pink cloud while I can.

Life throws us so many curve balls.  I'll accept whatever joy comes my way.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 07, 2016, 06:04:44 PM
It was through my therapist (a Certified Addictions Counselor) that I found out about this suite of websites.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 07, 2016, 08:03:38 PM
In the recovery community, there is this concept know as "High Class Problems."  These are problems that a person is lucky to have.  Such as an angry boss (at least I have a job).  A flat tire (at least I own a car).  Etc......

It's considered vulgar, rude, lame, ungrateful to complain about high class problems.  Example:  Someone goes on a Caribbean cruise and ends up in a cabin without a view of the ocean.  That would be pretty stupid to bring up at a group setting.

Well, I have high class problems, that I'm just soooo grateful for !

Gabriel

 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 07, 2016, 08:23:33 PM
I've noticed that the more I exercise, the less hungry I am. 

What a surprise.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 08, 2016, 08:25:59 AM
My experience is that relapse is all about a bad memory.  I've said this hundreds of times.  What I've learned is that this bad memory thing is specifically tied to my PMO "problem."  There's a psychological term for that.  It's called "denial."  "Denial" belongs in the DSM as a disorder all by itself.    But it's not there anywhere.

Alcoholics suffer from it, so do we.  You could give a lie detector test to an alcoholic, asking him whether he drank, while the liquor is still on his breath, and he would pass it, saying he never had a drop.  The phenomenon known as denial is baffling. 

We've got it.  I have a great memory, except when it comes to anything related to PMO.

Some day, scientists will be able to explain it.  I'm guessing here, but maybe it's that our PMO disease burns through (kind of like short circuits) the brain synapses that are also responsible for the memory capability related to events surrounding the disease itself. 

Like maybe those memory circuits that are responsible for memory, related to PMO, are burned through, and therefore nonfunctional.  Or maybe the dopamine erases them somehow. 

Example:  If I got a dopamine high related to placing my hand on a hot stove, then the dopamine would erase any memory of the pain related to placing my hand on a hot stove.  Under this scenario, our memory circuits are erased....maybe like an etch-a-sketch, when dopamine is present.

Hopefully, researchers will solve this puzzle someday, if they haven't already.

Maybe dopamine is the underlying culprit related to the phenomenon of denial.

Gabriel

Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 09, 2016, 09:02:32 AM
I'm still amazed at the vast resources available here for recovery.

I'm currently displaying the cycle:  ....strength, setting goals, stress, isolation, fall, shame, get up........

Right now I'm in the "strength, and setting goals" phase.

Before long (I'm guessing about two weeks) I'll be convinced that I never had a problem with PMO.  Why did I make such a big deal about it?  Just don't think about it!  Then comes the inevitable work related stress, I'll feel rejected, then alone, and then BAM!  I make the decision to engage in a PMO session.  (Why was I avoiding PMO in the first place?  There's nothing wrong with PMO.  Stop being such a prude!)   Then comes the shame.  Then the whole cycle starts all over again......

I'm guessing the weakest link in this cycle is the "I make a decision to engage in a PMO session" phase.   What happens when I don't choose PMO?  Back to facing reality.  Find other outlets for work related stress. 

Exercise.  Meditation.  Vacation.  Time off.  Hobbies.  Time with Spouse.  See my Therapist.  Live a sane life.  Find healthy self enriching excitement. 

I need to seek out healthy, self-enriching excitement. 

It doesn't have to match the excitement of PMO.  But adrenaline and dopamine it must provide.  I tried marathon running, but I blew out my Achilles.  What's next?

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: camus on March 09, 2016, 06:34:16 PM
Quote
I'm currently displaying the cycle:  ....strength, setting goals, stress, isolation, fall, shame, get up........

I know this cycle only too well Gabriel. I too am currently in the strength/setting goals phase - after having a pretty bad relapse last week.

When I do make a decision to use porn again, after a sober streak, I find I try my best not to think about the consequences. I must have relapsed over 100 times. There hasn't been a single time when I thought 'yes, this was a great idea'!

Looking forward to following your recovery thread buddy.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 10, 2016, 07:18:21 AM
I'm thinking of taking up fencing or boxing.  I need something new and exciting in my life.  I have no direct experience with either.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 10, 2016, 08:58:52 PM
Turns out there is a Fencing Club two blocks from my house.   Who knew?

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 11, 2016, 09:50:22 AM
I'm entering that phase, once again, in my addiction cycle, where I've forgotten why I'm even interested in abstaining from PMO.  My consequences, which have been huge, seem minor.  I just want to kick back and relax.  Just chill out.

This is probably the best journaling about my addiction to porn I've ever done, ever in life.  It must be the group journal/blog effect that is so useful.   

I'm driving (five hours each way) to spend some time with my Dad this weekend.  I have "Daddy" issues.  My Father suffers from narcissism.  Textbook case.  Not a malignant narcissist, but a narcissist none the less. 

Those of you with a narcissistic parent know what I'm going through.  Ugh.

I don't exist outside of him.  I'm merely an appendage of his, like and arm or a leg.  I have no individuality.  No separate humanity.  It's pretty repulsive.  Yet they can't exist without us.  Whatever.

Wish me luck.

Gabriel.

Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: camus on March 15, 2016, 03:34:44 AM
Hey Gabriel, you have a lot of insight into your addiction. I have similar thoughts as I progress through porn withdrawl and start thinking; 'maybe I can control it this time', or 'perhaps I can just stick to soft porn' or 'porn is a normal healthy thing which men enjoy'.

In AA they say that alcohol is 'cunning and baffling' and in my experience, the same is true for porn. At the moment I have to acknowledge that any thinking whatsoever that minimizes the effect porn has had on my life, is my addiction, not me.

Stay strong brother :-)
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 15, 2016, 07:07:04 AM
Planned on watching a five minute scene from a movie I've already watched several times.  Ended up watching the entire movie, so now I'm sleep-deprived.  If I can't get to the "neuro-chemical auto-pilot" from watching porn, I'll settle for a "Die Hard" movie. 

I could use some sleep.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 16, 2016, 06:54:03 AM
My major focus will be on trying to manage isolation.  That's my Achilles Heel in this game.  The good news:  I'm happily married!    8) 8) 8)

I can tell already that 2016 is going to be a great year!

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 17, 2016, 09:18:18 AM
I'm feeling OK today.  I've come a long way.  Had many, many successes.  I've got nine years of monogamy.
Will be talking to my therapist about this stuff.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 18, 2016, 10:13:05 AM
Am bookending that I'm going to check out the fencing club today.    It's two blocks from my place! 

Having a great week.  Went to a face-to-face meeting today.  I try, and generally succeed, in attending five face-to-face meetings a week.

Love you all,

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 18, 2016, 12:42:57 PM
I'm just experiencing my first major challenge.   

In the past, I would get this crazy idea about wanting to view a porn (related) video related to any particular nonsexually related task.  Any task, athletic or mundane, just viewed in a porn setting.

I just had a thought related to an activity I've been investigating, and how it would be to see that activity pornographically.

Wow.  I feel upset, and even sick about these thoughts.  I'm actually feeling dizzy and nauseous right now. 

This nausea and dizziness are probably the perfectly normal reaction to sexualizing something nonsexual.  I'm actually starting to feel sort of depressed just writing this.    I need to take a break.

Thanks,

Gabriel

 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 18, 2016, 01:20:19 PM
Well, I just suffered through my first episode, for this run, of nausea related to sexual thoughts I had which disgusted me. 

I survived.   I experienced dizziness and nausea.  I blogged about it here (new behavior).  I made some outreach phone calls about it (have done this before, but not within the past several years).    I seem to be back on the beam now, but you know how that goes.

I investigated Fencing, which apparently includes fencing against members of the opposite sex.  (There is almost no physical contact.  As little physical contact is involved as possible, no matter which genders are participating.)    It's still a great work out, though.

The club only meets on Tuesdays and Thursdays.  The weekends are reserved for tournaments.  Everyone is fully clothed.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 18, 2016, 02:05:10 PM
It is not reasonable for me to expect that abstinence from PMO is going to be all efficiency and top of my game.   Being triggered will upset me and throw me off balance sometimes.  Today I was really thrown off balance.  I got nauseous and dizzy, without PMO.

No one promised me that it would be easy.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 18, 2016, 02:49:09 PM
I guess I'm going through actual physical withdrawal.  Wow.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 18, 2016, 03:00:40 PM
I went to MSU.  I guess watching the NCAA playoffs this afternoon, even though State is behind so far, does make me feel better. 

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 18, 2016, 04:27:47 PM
Dealing with a lot of temptation. 

This, too, shall pass.

Gabriel   8)
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 18, 2016, 09:38:37 PM
Today Dharmabum said:

"So often, my desire for arousal (fantasy, porn) has little to do with my libido and so much more to do with wanting to hide from my feelings.  I feel fear, anxiety, or boredom and rather than sit with that honestly, I go into what i call my own personal "man cave", which is my mind, where I pull up some mental image of a former kinky situation or one I wished would happen.  But i don't really want those to happen.  I want an intimate, authentic relationship with my wife, and every time I let fantasy take over, I tell myself I'm powerless over my thoughts and decisions, but that's just not so. 

I've started using my meditation training to follow my breath when I start to get triggered, and I find that helps me snap out of my mental check-out and come back to the present moment.  The breathing also helps me settle down my anxieties and realize they are not yet realities...and may never be.  "

I guess this is true for me also.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Feetfirst on March 19, 2016, 03:53:47 AM
Hey Gabriel, just like to say you are doing brilliantly! Well done for your regular posts and face to face meetings. All essential stuff for recovery. Keep it up my friend. FF
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 19, 2016, 07:39:24 AM
Thank buddy.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 19, 2016, 08:08:20 AM
1. "Reboot/recovery for me means..."
2. "The root cause of my addiction is...."
3. "I get a dopamine high from..."
4. "Before relapsing, I start to feel..."
5. "The conditions that lead to relapse are always..."
6. "My safety plan before a relapse will now be..."

Reboot/recovery for me means I'll not be placing my happiness at risk.  I married well and I have an excellent job.  I want to keep both.  Backing away from PMO will help in my maintaining my relationships.

The root cause of my addiction is brain chemistry.  Although I suffered trauma in the past, many have suffered trauma without descending into porn addiction.  My problem is brain wiring and chemistry, and these can be conquered via behavioral modification.  Recovery is possible.

I get a dopamine high from PMO.  My brain craves it, even at the subconscious level, leading me to even dream about the pornographic images.  I can even feel the dopamine high while I'm in the dream state.

Before relapsing, I start to feel stress and isolation.  The isolation can be either physical, or just a mental isolation.

The conditions that lead to relapse are always stress and isolation.

My safety plan before a relapse will now be prayer and meditation, blogging, making phone calls, and attending face to face meetings.

Gabriel




Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 19, 2016, 08:25:36 AM
  Quote from MTNMAN6288:  Anyone else's brains trying this trick:

"Just try softer stuff or even Swimsuit Issue-level images...that's a step in the right direction...wouldn't be as bad as before!"


LOL!  Yes!   And how about this one: 

"Looks like I picked the wrong week/month/year to quit PMO." 

LOL.

It's actually a Lloyd Bridges quote from the 1980 movie Airplane:

McCroskey: Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit smoking.

Later in the movie....

McCroskey: Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit drinking. 

Later in the movie....

McCroskey: Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit amphetamines.

Later in the movie....

McCroskey: Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit sniffing glue.


Peace and love,

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 19, 2016, 10:14:45 PM
Based upon what I'm seeing here, and what my instinct is telling me.....

I'm going to start planning, for the first time ever in life, for a lifetime free from PMO, and it's effects. 

There's some dreams that I've want to fulfill, and now for the first time, I have the option of following up on them.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 20, 2016, 08:18:47 AM
Having a great day.  Of course, since I'm still so close to my PMO date, I'm sure I'll have some challenges this week.

But I'm optimistic.  Look forward to writing to all of you in the coming year.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 20, 2016, 10:08:32 AM
One of the benefits of my recovering in this area, is that I can be more present for others.  I have learned that this addiction is not a victimless crime.  Our behavior affects others in our lives.

My husband has an eating disorder that is at least as severe as my addiction to PMO.  As I continue to recover in this area of my life, which I seem to be doing, not only will I be dragging less spiritual debris into our marriage, but I'll actually be able to be a source of strength to him in his own recovery walk with food.

For those of us who are married, this disorder sometimes puts our spouses into the position of a parent role.....and things can go downhill from there.  I've been lucky in this area, that my spouse has been understanding and helpful.

I hope and pray that this recovery will place me in a position to be a further source of strength to others.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 20, 2016, 02:14:18 PM
The fencing club meets Tuesday and Thursday nights, with Tournaments on weekends.  I think it works pretty much like a dojo.   It might be rough on the knees, like basketball or tennis, but at 55, I'll never take it to that level.  I'm too old to be getting thrown around a dojo.

I need to mention that the daily blogging and reading routine, which is helping greatly, is also pretty triggering.  (But then again, so is watching TV.) 

So, although this suite of websites is somewhat triggering, the good outweighs the bad.  I noticed than on one of these lists they even have a problem with bloggers recommending the hiring of prostitutes!  That's not what I was expecting to see here.   Talk about out of the frying pan and into the fire!   

Great idea!  Avoid PMO!  Get Gonorrhea, Syphilis, and a whole host of other hard to spell STDs!   Now there's a solution. That must of been what they meant when they thought up the metaphor of hitting oneself on the head with a hammer to cure a headache.  LOL.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 21, 2016, 06:08:05 AM
I just encountered an important epiphany.

I have the mental capacity to achieve as much of a mental dopamine high from daydreaming/fantasizing (without PMO) as I can obtain from physically engaging in PMO.   The huge difference is that I can generally pull myself out of a daydream, whereas I usually am unable to pull myself out of a PMO session.   PMO sessions can go on for twelve solid hours.  Daydreaming usually only lasts for a few minutes.  But my daydreaming can get very hot and heavy. 

This new understanding explains a lot of the discouragement I've encountered over the last twenty years of my PMO recovery.

In the past, when I've sustained lengthy abstinence (in 1995 I was able to pull together about eleven months), I would daydream, and then be able to realistically tell myself:   "Well, you might as well physically relapse, you are experiencing the same overall impact of a relapse anyway."   

That wasn't true then, and it isn't true now, but it sounds pretty convincing in the moment.  You understand.

Those thoughts and rationalizations were pretty confusing and discouraging.  My dopamine-hungry brain can be impressively persuasive.

I haven't been able to open up about this ever before.

In the context of "Your Brain on Porn," though, this all make a lot of sense. 

Now the question becomes...do I need or want to track an "abstinence date" from daydreaming? 

Would that even be healthy? 

Scrupulosity

In the past, I've driven myself nearly insane with scrupulosity.  (I discovered that there actually is a twelve step program known as "Scruples Anonymous.") 

I'm going to discuss this with my Therapist.  Does it make sense to track an abstinence date from daydreaming, which can place me in the same dopamine-infused mental state as PMO?

These kind of discussions can, themselves, drive a person crazy.

Still though, I am looking forward to more epiphanies.  How can you solve for an answer, when you don't even know the question?

Gabriel

Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 21, 2016, 01:56:47 PM
I'd like to lessen my use of the "f" word.  It doesn't really fit with my lifestyle. 

I'll add this to my morning meditation.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 22, 2016, 10:02:53 AM
For some great laughs, I added the phrase "NoFap" to my work passwords. It lightened up my day, for sure.

Gabriel
 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 23, 2016, 06:30:48 AM
My therapist introduced me to YBOP for the first time this month. Been working on NoFap since 1994, when my first wife caught me. I knew as soon as I saw all of this content that I needed something to help me to take the focus off of PMO. I read somewhere on reddit/NoFap this month about guys who recommended Fencing, of all things.
 At 55, I'm too old to be tossed around a dojo. I need something that will keep my attention and yet still be good for my core.
 After some research, I found out that there's a fencing school two blocks from my house, in the basement of a Cultural Organization. The fencing school is renting space from the Cultural Organization.
 Fencing is hard on your knees, but my knees are OK, so that shouldn't be a problem.
 I went last night and I really enjoyed it. I figured I can keep it up for at least a while. This school is only for sabre fighting, they don't use the foil or the epee. It turns out that sabre fencing has the lowest injury rate.
 The things we'll do to avoid PMO!
 As an aside, if you need a good laugh now and then: I changed my work/banking computer passwords to include the phrase "NoFap." (Like Nof@p2016!) Guaranteed to put a smile on your face throughout the day.
 Best,
 Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 25, 2016, 04:34:25 PM
"When life gives you lemons......punch life in the dick." - NoFap Emergency Website.
 Was served with a Grand Jury subpoena today. No worries.

 Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 26, 2016, 12:26:37 AM
I just had a recovery growth spurt this evening. For the first time in 22 years of working on this PMO thing, it dawned on me what a pathetically stupid idea it was to substitute PMO with eating sweets. How remarkably ignorant of me. Eating sweets only fuels PMO addiction. Duh!

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 26, 2016, 08:05:06 AM
I just realized last night, after going to AA for twenty-two years, that although eating sweets, as a substitute for booze is a GREAT idea while detoxing, eating sweets - if I'm feeling particularly compulsive - is a STUPID idea. If I'm feeling compulsive, eating candy is like throwing GASOLINE on a FIRE.

At least I know I now!

Woo-hoo!

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 26, 2016, 08:45:51 AM
Just took my first NoFap cold shower.

I didn't scream like a girl. What I heard come out of me was the blood-curdling scream of a 55 year old woman being brutally murdered.

I survived.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: harry on March 26, 2016, 09:18:22 AM
Good for you, Gabriel!

You've joined the Cold Shower Brigade.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Feetfirst on March 27, 2016, 06:49:52 AM
Hey Gabriel, just dropping in to say well done! You are doing great! 30 days under the belt. Great progress. Cold showers. Not sure I am up for that but I'm sure it works. Enjoy. Yes I am with you on the sweeties. One of my downfalls. As I don't drink or smoke sweeties is my remaining indulgence. Tough one to break but as you say. It is only fuel to the fire of addiction. Keep going!! FF
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 27, 2016, 09:23:23 AM
I grew up in a household where we would celebrate weight loss by having an ice cream sundae.   No joke.

Why not celebrate one month of freedom from PMO by engaging in PMO?  That's my sick mind for you.   I've actually been on hard mode this past week because my spouse has been in Florida this week visiting relatives.  It goes back to the old Airplane! movie joke: "I guess I picked the wrong week to stop sniffing glue!"

I'll be OK today.  One day, one hour, sometimes one minute at a time. 

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 28, 2016, 07:19:57 PM
Had a rough day today.

 Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 31, 2016, 06:28:33 PM
Feeling a little better.  Had a rough week.  Am going through the phase I always have encountered where I don't remember ever having a problem with PMO, and I can't imagine why I ever thought I did. 

This thought pattern used to frighten me, because I knew that it implied that I was experiencing a sort of denial.  But today, I know I have a solution when I encounter my next test. 

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on April 02, 2016, 05:06:16 PM
Comfortably settling in to my new life, post detox, without PMO. One day at a time. Have to constantly be on the lookout for denial, which tells me I don't have a problem.

 Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on April 03, 2016, 09:50:47 AM
I've discovered that desserts work like Viagra on me.  It's not necessary for me to consume sugar to PMO, but the two were/are always connected.

Twenty years ago, when I first attempted to stop the PMO,  I was, coincidentally, also encouraged to see a nutritionist.  Both I and the nutritionist were shocked at the level of my dessert consumption.   It was off the charts.  I had no idea.

I then got off sweets for about a year back then, and was also off PMO for about the same time.  I never made the connection, though, between my dessert consumption and how difficult it made it to avoid PMO. 

I am hereby dis-abused of that ignorance.

Thanks for helping me come to this realization.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: now-man on April 03, 2016, 11:45:48 AM
Hey Gabriel,

Your last couple of posts are very perceptive. It's great how you're realizing some of the patterns that in the past have lead you back to PMO, even while you're going through some rough days. If you have more rough days, walking through them like you are, with your eyes open, is exactly what reboot is all about.

If you can make it through times like this, you're headed towards a healthier more centered life. Wishing you well. Keep going!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on April 04, 2016, 09:12:53 PM
Just checking in. Saw my therapist today. We're pretty pleased with my progress.

 I'm very pleased with my progress.

 Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on April 06, 2016, 07:18:29 PM
With regard to denial....today I just live with it, kind of like how a person lives with a physical deformity, or handicap. I try to make allowances for it. Acknowledging denial definitely robs it of power.

As of today I have 19 years of freedom from alcohol and drugs.

 Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Feetfirst on April 07, 2016, 01:48:10 AM
Hey Gabriel! Just wanted to come over to you and say another massive congratulations on 19 years drink and drug sobriety. So much trsnsferrable wisdom for your current journey. And ours! Truly inspiring. Well done. FF
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on April 09, 2016, 08:13:58 AM
Just checking in. Feeling somewhat cocky, which is part of the problem. Need to get real and get humble.

I think I'll spend an extra five minutes in meditation.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on April 10, 2016, 02:57:59 AM
Just checking in.  Things are going well.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on April 11, 2016, 06:13:42 AM
Monday check in.  Nothing to report.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on April 11, 2016, 09:28:52 PM
Just checking in again.  Nothing to report.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on April 12, 2016, 06:12:28 AM
I'm reading YBOP very slowly. Only two pages a day. Right now only I'm on page 28.

 I'm convinced that the slower I go through this process, without interruption, the lower my chances of a relapse.

 This might just be a "turtle versus hare" thing.

 Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on April 12, 2016, 10:06:01 PM
Christians who don't have a problem with porn mean well, but sometimes, they raise more obstacles to solving the PMO problem, then they remove.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on April 14, 2016, 06:23:36 PM
The last several days have been pretty rough.  I sure am glad I'm clean!  I'm also glad that we have all of these resources now.

Thanks, humanity!

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: fyg on April 14, 2016, 06:29:36 PM
HI Gabriel,

I just wanted to say 'Hi' as you posted in my journal last week. I've been reading parts of your journal, and well done on the 48 days man.

Cheers!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on April 16, 2016, 05:59:59 AM
I had a rough week.  *Not* made rougher by PMO.

Hooray!

I graduating from college in early May, which will give me a chance to blog more.  That will help.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Boo on April 16, 2016, 06:42:10 AM
Congrats on school. Also, 50 days is awesome. You've got a nice streak going here. Rough weeks will come and go. Stay the course brother. My best streak was 53 days. I'm sure you'll blow past that and add many more. I hope your on your way to a new way of life. That's my hope for all of us.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on April 17, 2016, 06:06:31 AM
Having a great day.  Glad I'm clean.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on April 18, 2016, 08:48:38 PM
Having a good day.

Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on April 20, 2016, 05:18:22 AM
Today I am experiencing a happy, joyful life. 

I know that today I won't make myself feel anything.  I will only take certain actions and hope that those actions lead to certain feels.  Those feels may or may not occur. 

Before, I was "using" PMO to achieve certain feels.  That approach brings with it nastiness and trouble that just isn't worth it anymore. 

Today I choose to achieve happiness and joy by taking certain actions, and hoping for the best.  It's a better, if somewhat uncertain and trusting, way to live.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on April 22, 2016, 05:43:13 AM
'Sup, y'all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on April 25, 2016, 04:59:30 AM
Just checking in.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on April 26, 2016, 06:30:17 AM
'Sup.  Today I am feeling exhausted, confused, suspicious, hysterical, frustrated, embarrassed, mischievous, disgusted, ashamed, cautious, overwhelmed, hopeful, love-struck, surprised, and shocked.

So, still waters run deep, huh?  LOL.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on April 28, 2016, 05:45:58 AM
'Sup.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on April 29, 2016, 06:05:55 AM
I'm graduating next week.  One of two graduation ceremonies tonight.  (Tonight for college, next week for entire school.)  It's great to be alive.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Feetfirst on April 29, 2016, 10:30:10 AM
Congratulations Gabriel on graduation and 63 days. Well done! FF
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on April 30, 2016, 05:51:16 AM
Ceremony was awesome.  Lots to celebrate in my life right now.  I'm truly blessed!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 01, 2016, 10:29:32 AM
'Sup, y'all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 03, 2016, 09:06:24 AM
Just getting over a cold.  Busy day ahead of me. Hope all of us stay clean today.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 04, 2016, 09:20:13 AM
'Sup, everyone.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 05, 2016, 08:37:47 AM
Graduating today.  Final exam due today.  It's great to be alive.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 08, 2016, 10:17:03 PM
'Sup, everyone.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 10, 2016, 10:48:59 AM
'Sup, ya'll.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: malando on May 10, 2016, 10:51:15 AM
Trying to resist the urge... You?
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 11, 2016, 06:07:29 PM
'Sup, M.

Today, for the first time ever in life, I hired a wardrobe consultant.  I needed some guided advice in the wardrobe selection department.  I doubt I would have had the presence of mind to do this, if I was still on the PMO train.  I'm starting to make better life decisions.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: malando on May 12, 2016, 02:24:37 AM
That's an interesting idea, G. I've never even thought of such a thing. What prompted you to do this?
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 12, 2016, 06:28:34 AM
M.  What prompted me to do that, was having a mind freed from the bondage of PMO.

How ya do'in?
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: malando on May 12, 2016, 06:45:48 AM
So just trying new things to freshen up your life? I can dig that.

I'm doing ok. Got a real shock that I was quite repulsed by the porn I looked at last night. I feared I was going to love it and just go on a binge, but I felt kinda sick looking at it and shut it down before I got too far. Hopefully that means I can kick the porn habit without too much trouble. Doesn't mean I can kick the other habit so easily, but kicking porn would be a major step for me.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 13, 2016, 06:37:02 AM
The NoFap Academy is recommending squats for Nofappers.  I'm sticking to the Leg Press Machine.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 14, 2016, 08:48:37 AM
I promise to quit porn and live a more awesome life.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 14, 2016, 09:11:36 PM
'Sup.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 16, 2016, 09:10:29 PM
'Sup.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: navigator101 on May 17, 2016, 04:58:28 AM
 I was addicted to porn for many years.  I am healing now after spending the last 8 months in a recovery group.  It has been great and as of now, I just don't have the desire to watch internet porn any more.  The reason I am writing on this forum is to maybe get some insight on a problem I am going thru in my recover.  I am in my early 60's.  My problem I have now is with sleep.
I have done a lot of research about sleep deprivation during porn recovery & understand how dopamine works in the brain.  My problem is not falling asleep soon after I go to bed. My problem is staying asleep.  I usually get to bed around 11:30.  Since I am retired I don't have to get up.  I usually read till I get sleepy then go to sleep.  I wake up every morning around 3 am  and then cannot back to sleep.   I feel like it will eventually pass and my normal sleep habits will come back,  at least that is what I understand from research I have done.  I just wanted to get some comments from other viewers on here.  Is this fairly normal in recovery?    The last porn I watched was in late Feb.   Thanks for any insight. 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 17, 2016, 06:46:25 AM
Navigator

I've read up a lot on this subject, and what I've learned is when waking in the middle of the night, continue to lie motionless, you may not believe that you're getting any sleep, but in fact you are having periods of restful sleep that are sufficient to enable you to function.  REM sleep is ideal.  Most U.S. hospitals now have sleep clinics, if your insurance will pay for it.

Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 18, 2016, 09:30:28 AM
Had an excellent work out this morning.  Was surprised to learn yesterday that I am 54 days off sugar. 

There's definitely a connection with my sugar intake and my PMO problem.  Also, I think sugar makes me feel old. 

Also, I need to get to bed by 9:00pm, then being up by 4:00am is not a problem.

Right now I'm in better job search mode.  My current job is OK, but I can do better.  Preparing job application(s) today.  Wish me luck!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 19, 2016, 06:35:59 AM
'Sup everyone.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: malando on May 19, 2016, 08:33:15 AM
Not much. Just the daily struggle. I'm also trying to quit sugar. Porn and sugar need to go from my life. It's hard to get rid of both at the same time.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 20, 2016, 07:24:19 AM
'Sup.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 21, 2016, 05:42:27 AM
'Sup.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 24, 2016, 06:48:45 AM
'Sup.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 24, 2016, 07:36:56 AM
I am with you in your struggles.  Porn and sugar...who'da thunk?  Both reward the dopamine centers in the brain. Both can be detrimental to the physical body.  Both provide pleasure.

So, I guess I will be joining you in the battle against the bulge.  I will have a little difficulty finding the time, but time I used to spend with porn or infront of the television can now be spent working out again.

Confound these blogs!  Lol
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Jon64 on May 27, 2016, 08:36:28 PM
Congratulations on 90 days. keep up the good work Gabriel
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 30, 2016, 12:55:45 PM
Thanks E and J.  Hope all is well.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 31, 2016, 06:15:01 AM
'Sup.  66 days off sugar.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: gummianka on May 31, 2016, 07:31:32 AM
Well done!!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 01, 2016, 07:16:52 AM
.....party people in the house!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 03, 2016, 12:55:06 PM
Hope all is well.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on June 05, 2016, 09:18:45 PM
You're an inspiration, Gabriel.  You joined RN in March and already you've reached your goal of 100 days.  Impressive.  "The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot"--how did I miss that on yourbrainonporn (book and website)?  So thanks for bringing it to me.  Keep up the good work!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 05, 2016, 09:48:15 PM
Thanks Branch.

Went on a four hour AA day cruise today.  It was nice to get out on the water on a hot sunny day.  Sometimes AA will host these day cruises in my area.  (Kind of like a Gilligan's Island "three hour cruise" for those of you old enough to remember.)  Great weather for it today.

I had a nightmare last night that I was hosting a big work meeting, and I dropped a pitcher of water my boss asked me to carry.  My nightmares are exclusively about work these days.  I have a very busy week and month ahead. 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 07, 2016, 06:48:28 AM
Yo.  Very busy week.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 07, 2016, 08:26:02 PM
I own an iPad that I only used for PMO.   

I need it for work, but was too stupid-ed up to use it for its worthwhile purpose.  So today I  downloaded the work apps onto the iPad.  I deleted the leftover residue of all that old PMO junk. 

The software apps actually work!  Things are looking up.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 08, 2016, 06:32:45 AM
'Sup.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 08, 2016, 09:41:58 PM
'Sup.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 09, 2016, 04:32:13 AM
Over-the-top busy day today.   Will be working out-of-state next week.  Needing to prepare for it. 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: BlueSun on June 09, 2016, 09:10:57 AM
I picked up my tablet that used to be my porn outlet. Formatted it fresh so it's got an untainted image. Helped me draw the line, the seal hasn't been broken since. When I picked it up, strangest cell memory though, got cloudy for a moment then cleared up. So odd, yet refreshing to watch it wash away
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 11, 2016, 09:48:35 AM
I'm more functional off PMO.  See the world in a saner, more realistic way. 

I'm grateful for my time off PMO.  My life is too big for it now.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on June 11, 2016, 03:20:50 PM
You go, Gabriel!  I love coming to your journal and getting a shot of inspiration!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 11, 2016, 08:10:24 PM
Sometimes I think of my time off PMO as a vacation.  Maybe it's really just early retirement?   God knows that many times it was like a really low paying job! 

So, I've retired from PMO.  Officially. 

Now to *remain* retired. 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: fyg on June 12, 2016, 07:06:06 AM
Hi Gabriel,

I don't know whether you saw my post to you on Branch's thread (reply # 96), but I promised a quote, that I will put in my own thread (reply # 190). I mentioned it to you as it just seemed to echo with your thoughts about PMO feeding off one's own anger towards PMO. I've put it in my thread, as I, maybe overcautiously, do not wish to trigger yourself or others. Therefore you can leave if you wish, or not read at all!

Completely separate to that, I really liked your recent post; if you don't mind? I'll quote it... :)
Quote
I'm more functional off PMO.  See the world in a saner, more realistic way. 

I'm grateful for my time off PMO.  My life is too big for it now.
- This is very motivating. Thank you.

I hope you don't mind my unsolicited interjections here. My intention is to help RN Bro's ;)

Peace
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 12, 2016, 08:31:43 AM
Hey FYG.

All unsolicited interjections are invited.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: fyg on June 12, 2016, 09:46:01 AM
Once again, thanks Gabriel ;) I wish I'd just posted the quote here now... save the confusion! Ha ha. I Hope you read it anyway.

Peace to you, dude
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 13, 2016, 09:21:31 PM
I did.  Thanks.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 14, 2016, 05:34:09 AM
Working out of town.  Work is going well.

I usually struggle with loneliness when I travel. 

Even when I'm at my peak performance on the road, I'm looking for an escape even from that.

Writing and talking about it helps.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on June 14, 2016, 06:45:27 PM
Working out of town.  Work is going well.

I usually struggle with loneliness when I travel. 

Even when I'm at my peak performance on the road, I'm looking for an escape even from that.

Writing and talking about it helps.

You're way ahead of me on the number of days, but having done a lot of traveling, too, I'd suggest seeing travel as an adventure and enjoy the newness of the place, the difference from being at home.  Enjoy the hotel, where everything's done for you.  Work out in the fitness room.  Take a swim.  Go to the lobby and strike up a conversation.  If you're in a city, take a walk, look around.  Have a nice dinner out--or in the room and order a movie.  I've always enjoyed the newness of travel, even to a familiar place, because the change from being at home is interesting and brings a cool feeling.  I like being home, too--just making a point.  Anyway, these are just a few thoughts--you'll figure it out.

Keep that great streak going, Gabriel!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 17, 2016, 03:03:53 PM
Thanks Branch and Chip.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: fyg on June 19, 2016, 04:48:44 AM
I did.  Thanks.

Cool!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 19, 2016, 09:12:11 AM
Branch, when I'm on the road, its frequently (not always) an emotional horror show.  I'm there to investigate fault and assign blame. 

Sometimes things are cool, but that's the exception, not the rule. 

I'm usually partnered out of town with someone else, who is usually (not always) disturbed and insensitive.  Some of the people I am engaged with while traveling are either paranoid of being found out, or seeking revenge for having been "discovered."

Does this sound like an awful job?  It can be.  But it pays the bills. 

I have changed career paths several times, but have somehow ended up back in this work situation again. 

Work is work.  I'm able to process the paperwork that needs to be processed. 

God is good.

It sounds like I'm complaining, but I'm really not.  I've accepted my current life situation, and have made accommodations to remain PMO free, without the anger or resentment that comes with what some would consider a "toxic" job. 

Without the "Hunger, Anger, Loneliness, for Fatigue" (Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired) (H.A.L.T.)  that life brings my way.  It's manageable.





Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 19, 2016, 09:22:39 AM
Chip

The hardest times since posting to this website have been when I found myself mindlessly engaged in behavior that placed me at a high risk of relapse, without even giving the behavior a second thought.  For every one of us, that place is different.

For one person, it might be going out of their way to speak with a woman, or even type of woman, whom they previously had an affair with.  For another, it might be some other behavior.  I discovered that I was chronically, unnecessarily, going out of my way to place myself in high risk situations.  I have put an end to those actions.  I had to.  Why it took me 22 years to do that is beyond me.   

The result has been pretty cool.  I feel more on top of my life then ever.  It is what it is.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 19, 2016, 10:44:34 PM
Nope.  That's not what I'm talking about.  I'm talking about ways that we go waaay out of our way, from force of habit, to set ourselves up for a relapse. 
An example would be contacting an ex for a "legitimate" (work-related) reason.   Going to a restaurant (or anywhere else) where we had previously scored, or "almost" scored.   Blah, blah, blah.    That kind of stuff.   It appears innocent, but realistically, we know it's not. 
Setting ourselves up for an "accident waiting to happen."  "Oops, I didn't mean to."
It reminds me of this:  http://media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/236x/e4/a2/51/e4a25101e8f35f4897f5ddc4eeb03679.jpg
I guess I thought of these kinds of actions as my "reward" for no PMO.   
My ace in the hole right now is that I'm happily married.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 21, 2016, 07:02:03 AM
'Sup.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: fyg on June 21, 2016, 12:31:07 PM
'Sup.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 21, 2016, 10:16:11 PM
Happy Tuesday.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: fyg on June 22, 2016, 04:31:59 AM
Happy Wednesday! :)
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on June 22, 2016, 06:04:41 PM
'Sup?  117 days!  Yo, dog, that's what's up.  Pretty impressive, too.   8)
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 22, 2016, 07:12:27 PM
Back in the 90's, it used be very difficult for me to chase after all of the self-destructive behaviors I was trying to abstain from:  drinking, PMO, smoking, gambling, sugar, even shopping.  It was effortless for me to switch from one behavior to the other.   At first, I was even chain-smoking cigars!  :)
Somehow it all worked itself out.   
I give God all the credit.  It wasn't me that stopped. 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 22, 2016, 09:21:02 PM
I found a lot of answers in YBOP.  I try to read a couple of pages from it every day.  I also frequently check out Nofap Emergency; generally, daily.

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 23, 2016, 05:18:34 PM
I realized this morning that I kind of miss the excitement of constantly kicking my own ass.   But only in a small way. 

It sure makes it easier to remain adult and mature - when I'm not kicking my own butt.

So Chip, had you heard that people who pray/meditate often physically appear younger?  There's been studies done on it.  The opposite was also found to be true.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 24, 2016, 06:27:24 AM
Yup.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: fyg on June 25, 2016, 10:09:39 AM
Yo.
Adrian!!! ???

"I did it!!!" - Congrats on 120 days, Gabriel! Woooo Hoooo!!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: brokensoul on June 25, 2016, 12:27:34 PM
My neuroscience, neurosurgeon boyfriend has been an addict for over 20 years.  I also feel he has a personality disorder.  After disclosing everything to me I have now become the enemy.  He went from I want to get through this with you to you should go find somebody else.  He is constantly defensive.  I have no idea where he is in recovery.  He can actually get a full erection after 2 years.  If I bring anything up about his recovery he freaks out....WHY???  He doesn't like to touch me below the belt.  Says it's disgusting.  I feel like I constantly have to initiate sex.  I am a professional fitness model.  He makes me feel ugly and unattractive, yet the only one I'm attracted to is him.  I think the pmo causes personality disorders.  It destroys the person they were created to be.  When he was younger, (now 40) he had so many aspirations.  Why do you guys waste hours, days, years persuing pictures to satisfy your dick?  You really need to stop and think about that above all.  Before you know it you will have wasted the best years of your life not in persuing the woman of your dreams but in feeding your brain chemicals that alter your personality and destroy your potential. 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 25, 2016, 08:11:07 PM
'Sup.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 26, 2016, 07:53:22 AM
Thanks fyg.

My life is now focused on meeting my work challenges, which could totally consume me, if I let them. 

My work challenges could easily lead me to a relapse, without prayer and meditation to right my ship. 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on June 26, 2016, 03:21:26 PM
Yo, Gabriel, keep on rockin' in the free world!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 27, 2016, 06:58:08 AM
Hey Chip.  How is Brokensoul doing?  I hope she is having a nice day.

Hey Branch:  Happy Tuesday.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 28, 2016, 04:49:58 AM
Although I've been in recovery for 22 years, I've never been to treatment.

Last night, I went to a SMART recovery meeting.  They have this exercise where they ask you to list out your priorities in life, which could be anything (money, friends,  happiness, etc..).  (This is an exercise also done in treatment, I guess). 

I listed as my top priority: "sexual gratification."   

Wrong answer. 

Everyone at the meeting had already been to treatment, and so they knew the right answer was "abstinence," or "sobriety."  So I flunked the test. 

I'll get it right next time, hopefully.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 28, 2016, 06:31:23 PM
Read as "Dwight" from the U.S. version of "The Office:" 

"False!!!  The correct answer is 'No PMO.'"
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 29, 2016, 06:58:45 AM
Yo.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on June 29, 2016, 03:21:03 PM
Although I've been in recovery for 22 years, I've never been to treatment.

Last night, I went to a SMART recovery meeting.  They have this exercise where they ask you to list out your priorities in life, which could be anything (money, friends,  happiness, etc..).  (This is an exercise also done in treatment, I guess). 

I listed as my top priority: "sexual gratification."   

Wrong answer. 

Everyone at the meeting had already been to treatment, and so they knew the right answer was "abstinence," or "sobriety."  So I flunked the test. 

I'll get it right next time, hopefully.

Forgive me for asking, but what's wrong with sexual gratification?  Sexual gratification is a important part of love and intimacy.  It doesn't have to mean monkey sex--no offense to monkeys, but we're homo sapiens, and vive la difference.

I would take your answer to mean, getting past porn and finding real intimacy in a loving relationship. I mean, if there's no sex on the other side of porn, what's the deal?!     

Then again maybe I'm just a heathen.   ;D
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 29, 2016, 07:10:10 PM
Read as "Dwight" from the U.S. version of "The Office:" 

"False!!!  The correct answer is 'No PMO.'"  LOL.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on June 30, 2016, 12:56:59 PM
Although I've been in recovery for 22 years, I've never been to treatment.

Last night, I went to a SMART recovery meeting.  They have this exercise where they ask you to list out your priorities in life, which could be anything (money, friends,  happiness, etc..).  (This is an exercise also done in treatment, I guess). 

I listed as my top priority: "sexual gratification."   

Wrong answer. 

Everyone at the meeting had already been to treatment, and so they knew the right answer was "abstinence," or "sobriety."  So I flunked the test. 

I'll get it right next time, hopefully.

Forgive me for asking, but what's wrong with sexual gratification?  Sexual gratification is a important part of love and intimacy.  It doesn't have to mean monkey sex--no offense to monkeys, but we're homo sapiens, and vive la difference.

I would take your answer to mean, getting past porn and finding real intimacy in a loving relationship. I mean, if there's no sex on the other side of porn, what's the deal?!     

Then again maybe I'm just a heathen.   ;D
Your no Heathen, just a horny bugger.

I think what they mean is it shouldn't be your primary goal, in an altruistic sense.

Horny indeed, but good to know I'm not a heathen.

I stand corrected.  I see what you mean, Chip.

Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 30, 2016, 09:37:09 PM
Yup.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 01, 2016, 07:20:18 AM
FYI. 

My chief defects of character are that I am domineering, overbearing, self-righteous, arrogant, angry, lustful, paranoid, defiant, and opinionated.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 01, 2016, 09:54:32 PM
Yo.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 02, 2016, 01:24:00 AM
Recently I was accused of being better than everyone else. I was also informed that I was one of the top contenders for "Most Humble Person On Earth." 
That's what goes on in AA.  LOL
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 02, 2016, 11:08:26 AM
Yup.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on July 02, 2016, 01:06:20 PM
FYI. 

My chief defects of character are that I am domineering, overbearing, self-righteous, arrogant, angry, lustful, paranoid, defiant, and opinionated.

Nevertheless, other than these few minor defects, you're perfect.  ;)

Seriously, correcting or alleviating our flaws begins with humility, which in turn begins with admitting to flaws. You're making deeper changes along with conquering addictions. 

You continue to inspire.  Wishing you well as you continue on your path.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 03, 2016, 02:38:51 PM
Thanks Branch.
Spending the weekend with my Dad.  This is not good for me, but I bring God along.
God has His hands full with my Dad.
He's God's problem, not mine.  I left him at the cross.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on July 03, 2016, 07:00:23 PM
Thanks Branch.
Spending the weekend with my Dad.  This is not good for me, but I bring God along.
God has hands full with my Dad.
He's God's problem, not mine.  I left him at the cross.

My dad and I had some serious issues, so I understand how tough such times can be.  He passed on several years ago.  About a year before he died, after I'd had some beneficial therapy (he was the main reason for it), I finally realized that his problems were his, not mine, set some boundaries in my mind, and called him up.  We hadn't spoken for a few years.  He answered the phone and we had a good talk.  That last year of his life we had a meaningful relationship. I visited him several times.  We talked regularly on the phone.  It wasn't perfect but it went well.  When he wanted to renew old conflicts, I told him I wanted things to be good between us, and he backed off.  Those moments didn't help, but all in all that year was a blessing.  I hope you'll find better times with your father, and I wanted to let you know that it's possible.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 06, 2016, 08:42:54 PM
I made it back alive!
Thanks Branch, I can really relate to your posting.  He's also the primary reason I'm in therapy right now.  The main topic of conversation. 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 07, 2016, 05:23:24 AM
Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 07, 2016, 05:36:24 PM
Yo.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 08, 2016, 09:05:11 AM
Anger is outside of my price range.

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on July 08, 2016, 12:37:58 PM
Anger is outside of my price range.

Love to all.

Yo, Gabriel, right back at you!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 09, 2016, 08:38:41 AM
It would be nice if someday I got to the point where there was nothing for PMO to fix.

Yo.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 10, 2016, 09:57:09 AM
Yo.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on July 12, 2016, 02:11:16 AM
It would be nice if someday I got to the point where there was nothing for PMO to fix.

Yo.

That would be nice but it would mean you're no longer human.  You can fix stuff and live your life without pmo.  I'd say that's what you're doing and you'll get better at it as time goes on.

Yo! Wishing you well!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 12, 2016, 05:10:40 AM
Thanks, Branch.

I think I'm getting bored with having a wonderful life.  More meditation!  More prayer!

Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 13, 2016, 10:52:28 AM
Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: johne5 on July 13, 2016, 03:00:04 PM
Lost,
I'm looking through your posts and see that we're in the same boat so to speak.  My problem too has been a mix of porn and affairs.  I'm still trying to sort out how they're connected, but I know I need to quit both. 

I'm still in contact with my AP, and I'm not really sure what that'll look like in the future, but I know for a fact that I have to quit the porn completely now.  Looks like you've got a good number of days under your belt since your relapse back in March, keep up the fight, you're not alone.  I look forward to the day that my PMO days are double or triple digit.

John
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 14, 2016, 06:01:47 AM
I've been working out every day now, and my testosterone level seems to be high.   I'm starting to break out.  I'll need some stridex.

It turns out there really is something known as "bodybuilding acne."  That's news to me.

Whatever.  They should warn us about this.  Small price to pay.

So now abstaining from PMO gives me acne. Pffffft!

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 15, 2016, 07:08:04 AM
Gorilla mode today at the gym.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 16, 2016, 07:16:46 AM
Here are my abstinence dates:
Alcohol - off nineteen years
Credit cards - off eight years
Gambling/gaming - off seven months
Sugar - 112 days
PMO - See below

Regarding my Dad's narcissism:  My therapist recommended a book "Trapped in the Mirror" by Elan Golomb.  It's about coping with being trapped inside someone else's mirror (in this case, my Dad's mirror). 
It's a wonderful life!
Love to all. 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 16, 2016, 08:12:59 AM
Self-actualization rocks!!!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 16, 2016, 04:36:21 PM
Yo.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: regguyinpa on July 16, 2016, 07:09:56 PM
Yo. Keep up the good work!!!!!!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 17, 2016, 05:49:24 AM
Whazzzaaappp?
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: fyg on July 17, 2016, 07:18:11 AM
Sup Gabriel  :)
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 17, 2016, 05:00:44 PM
So I had an unexpected benefit from abstaining from PMO.
I've started working out more consistently than ever before. 
I'm in (what is for me) excellent physical shape right now. 
Yesterday I needed to help seal an asphalt driveway.  It turns out the driveway sealant tubs are very, very heavy.  Over 40 pounds each, easy.  I needed to use a lot of sealant, over six tubs.  If you've ever sealed an asphalt driveway, you'll know that you need to lift and pour the sealant canisters directly onto the pavement, in a series.  A lot of lifting and pouring very heavy tubs. 
In the past, my back would have been strained, and I would have ended up in the doctor's office in severe pain.  In fact, I was expecting to end up there today.  I wasn't expecting to be able to get out of bed, due to the back pain.
But, since I'm now in such good physical shape, no back pain.  In fact, I worked out this morning.
Therefore, abstaining from PMO has saved me from an unwanted visit to the doctor's office to alleviate back pain agony!   Worth it.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 18, 2016, 10:01:48 AM
I don't want to use PMO to avoid growing up, and to avoid learning and developing creative adult problem-solving tools. 

It's only through avoiding PMO that I will have the opportunity to develop further problem-solving tools.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 19, 2016, 09:32:06 AM
This morning for the first time since my reboot, I had the thought that recovery from PMO was not my highest priority at present. 
This is normal.
I get some success, and immediately start focusing on other priorities.  Other mountains to climb. 
Nope.  Nope.  Nope!
I need to maintain recovery from PMO as my #1 priority. 
TMI warning:  I lost a high-paying job in 2004 due to porn.  Got caught using it at the office.
BTW, at the time, I had all of the net nanny software available on the market both at home and at work.  My computer hardware was fully loaded with all of best net nanny hardware and software, but still I went there.
Recovery from PMO needs to be my highest priority, for at least a while. 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 19, 2016, 11:52:55 AM
I cannot tell you how much glee it gives our feminist coworkers, not to mention subordinates at work (I had nine subordinates when I lost my job to porn) to watch a man lose his career to PMO.  I was out of work for nine months, plus I had to switch professions, because the word was on the street.  To be honest, I even ended up accepting government welfare benefits, because I chose to resign rather than be fired.  My male boss gave me a good reference, though.  Probably because I resigned, instead of having to be fired.   
Nowadays, it would be more like 15 months for me to find a new job.  I would lose my house in the process, this time around. 
There is not going to be a "this time around."   
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on July 19, 2016, 04:14:42 PM
Damn, Gabriel, you've been through a lot.  And yet you're so upbeat.  Kudos to you, my man.  And best of luck with everything.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 20, 2016, 07:20:01 AM
I just realized that I have a delusion about exercise, which I inherited from my narcissistic Dad.  The delusion is that daily exercise, while OK occasionally, is a bad idea for a person to engage in every day.  This is one of his "opinions." 
In reality, he didn't want me to appear better/handsomer/more accomplished than himself, so he strongly discouraged my development.  This is normal for a narcissist.  His excuse was that he was protecting me from serious injury.  Pffffft.  What he was doing was protecting himself from the spotlight moving off *him.* 
I grew up living inside his mirror. 

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on July 20, 2016, 10:47:55 AM
I just realized that I have a delusion about exercise, which I inherited from my narcissistic Dad.  The delusion is that daily exercise, while OK occasionally, is a bad idea for a person to engage in every day.  This is one of his "opinions." 
In reality, he didn't want me to appear better/handsomer/more accomplished than himself, so he strongly discouraged my development.  This is normal for a narcissist.  His excuse was that he was protecting me from serious injury.  Pffffft.  What he was doing was protecting himself from the spotlight moving off *him.* 
I grew up living inside his mirror. 

Love to all.

My dad was a narcissist, too.  Reading this, I see that maybe he held me to impossible standards--the old "never good enough" game--to keep me from surpassing him in any way. 

Yeah, it was tough on me, but it's sad to think of him carrying that burden, wasting so much of his time and energy on nothing.  God bless him.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on July 20, 2016, 10:49:21 AM
"I grew up living inside his mirror."

What an incredible line.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 20, 2016, 12:28:05 PM
Just read on page 103 of YBOP:  "Note:  If you are a video-gamer, using a porn-blocker can be risky.  Your brain is accustomed to getting some of is dopamine hits from finding ways around obstacles.  You may unthinkingly treat the porn blocker like just another videogame quest.   If this happens, delete your porn blocker and try extinction training or some other approach."

That is an issue I have.  I am very good at disabling porn blockers, even when I don't know the "safe" word.  It became a dark joke.  (Those porn blockers aren't free, you know.)
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 22, 2016, 08:39:57 AM
I have a big job interview today.  This is normal.  I get some time, and great things start happening to me.  Then I forget what gave rise to all the great stuff, and return to the old behavior.  Not this time.   
Nope. Nope. Nope!
Wish me luck in my job interview today.
Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on July 22, 2016, 11:20:14 AM
Good luck with the job interview!  Sounds like you're going into it at your best!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 22, 2016, 02:38:05 PM
Interview went well.  Will let you know how it goes.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 23, 2016, 09:11:40 AM
Yo.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 23, 2016, 06:14:16 PM
I'm becoming a different person.  I like this new person.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on July 23, 2016, 10:20:00 PM
One more day--nail it!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 24, 2016, 07:26:22 AM
Blinding flash of the obvious time:  I have a lot more energy now.  Well, duh. 

PMO delusion #57: it just *seems like* PMO is providing me with energy. 

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on July 24, 2016, 08:48:52 PM
Congrats on 100%!  You rule, Gabriel!   8)
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: RuntoSpirit on July 24, 2016, 11:33:35 PM
Blinding flash of the obvious time:  I have a lot more energy now.  Well, duh. 

PMO delusion #57: it just *seems like* PMO is providing me with energy. 



YEs, there is always the half truth or bold lie (Porn gives me energy) and then there is the truth (afterwards I feel depleated like a bombed out shelter)
I don't always keep thie perspective of lie/and truth in my consideration.  Part of temptation is that there is SOME truth in the temptation or you woouldn't be tempted at all.  I suppose the key is to go for the WHOLE truth adn know that there is a life advantage to live by that.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 26, 2016, 05:30:13 AM
Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 27, 2016, 01:25:16 AM
My sump pump gave up the ghost tonight at 11:00 pm.  RIP, old timer!

I have a back up, but I need to get a new PVC fitting for it, which will have to wait until the stores open tomorrow.   Good times!  Woo-hoo!  (Read using Homer Simpson's voice.)
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on July 27, 2016, 03:01:43 PM
You reach one goal and set another.  Fantastic.

Re sump pump--ain't life fun sometimes?
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 28, 2016, 04:38:08 AM
This process is transforming my logic, like never before. 
 
Before: Aches and pains from heavy lifting at the gym?  An excellent/logical excuse to stop. 
Now: A logical reason to continue.  Aches/pains are part of the process.

Before:  Life gets hectic (sump pump failure, etc...).  No time for the gym!
Now:  Go to the gym anyway; reap the rewards.

I had an Episcopal Priest in twelve step complain to me on Monday that the gym merely transformed his appearance from "flabby" to "wire-y," so what was the point?   The point is that (no matter what) the gym makes you physically stronger, more flexible, more physically agile, and that it is great for your muscles and especially internal organs (especially your heart).

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 28, 2016, 04:56:39 AM
Prayer and meditation help with lust in a HUGE way.  Here are several prayers that I use/have used.  Some have even turned into mantras:

God, please show me how much you love me.  Please make it obvious, because I'm pretty slow.

God, please remove my delusions about PMO.  (I say this one every day.  Powerful.)

God, please send me someone to love.  (That's an old prayer, that I used to use before I got remarried.  It works.   It's an unselfish prayer/mantra.)
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 28, 2016, 10:41:40 PM
Working out really helps when you're 55, and *sprinting* to catch a train with a heavy bag full of files.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 29, 2016, 07:06:53 PM
Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: RuntoSpirit on July 30, 2016, 10:29:23 AM
I just wanted to congratulate you on your 155 days. 
IT seems like a monumental acheivement to me, but I take heart form your example and keep going one day at a time, enjoying life as I go.
Cheers to you.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 30, 2016, 06:37:59 PM
Thanks RS.  I feel the same. 
I'm the guy that lost an entire career to getting caught with PMO at work.
I see these guys who are just here for 90 days and then they're gone, and I just laugh.

This is from page 106 of YBOP:  "The downside of both accountability partners and forum participation is that they are online activities.  As problematic internet port use is an internet-based issue, you need to spend less time online, not more.  While most people agree that a forum helped them during the first phase of recovery, eventually some find that a recovery forum can itself become a way to avoid real life. At that point, some choose to check a forum only when they need encouragement."

I only spend about 5-10 minutes a day on here, at most.  I hardly call that "avoiding real life." 

Everyone is different.  I'm going to continue to check in daily. 
For those that have an issue with spending five minutes a day on here, I say: "Good luck with that."
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 31, 2016, 08:51:05 AM
Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: RuntoSpirit on July 31, 2016, 10:32:44 AM
Hey,
Do you have any sense as to how you are different in terms of your awareness now that you are 155+ days since no PMO?
By the way I'm with you on a good use of INternet for forums.  For me they clearly are a substitute activity and I feel that I am recaliaming using the internet correctly and healthily.  Congratualtions on your cointinued recovery.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 01, 2016, 04:51:26 AM
RS
How am I different?  At age 55, I am experiencing a personal best at the gym.  Reddit/Nofap talks about "super powers" and I'm one of those that are experiencing them during this reboot. 

I've experienced self actualization for the first time during this reboot. 

But it's different for everyone.  I wouldn't have any expectations.  "Expectations are resentments in the making."  (Old twelve step slogan.)

One of the things I'm working on with my therapist is that I have a very high sex drive/testosterone level (or whatever that is).  My ex said I'd end up fathering twelve children.  She was not a "twelve children" kind of gal!  LOL.

It's a struggle being so interested in sex all the time.  ED isn't a problem.  Meditation helps a lot. 
The answer to all my problems?  More meditation.

It is crucial that I remain humble about the free weight gym personal bests.  I need to remain in balance.

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 02, 2016, 08:47:11 AM
More meditation!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: RuntoSpirit on August 02, 2016, 08:28:00 PM
Congratulations on your 158 days and your new weight lifting record.
HEre's to futher insights in your recovery.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 03, 2016, 08:30:13 AM
Sometimes, it's like I can feel the testosterone coursing through my veins. 

More meditation, of course.  :)

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 03, 2016, 09:34:58 AM
From page 111 of YBOP:

"Meditation is probably the best tool for putting the pre-frontal cortex in the driver's seat."
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Delerium on August 03, 2016, 10:22:21 AM
Damn, kudos on the 159 days!  Thanks for the reminder, have not meditated much lately.  Emotions have been all over the place.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 05, 2016, 11:26:11 PM
Yo.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 06, 2016, 08:14:26 AM
Over the past 22 years, it's been a real rollercoaster ride.  I thought I had the answer in prayer, religion, meditation, group therapy, personal therapy, net nannies, blah, blah, blah.

Short-lived spectacular recoveries, then equally spectacular relapses.   

What's happened is, I believe, that mankind has developed a solution that is at least equally as attractive as the problem porn created.

So now I'm abstinent for a time, and life is starting to seem boring. 

This is just a misperception.  My life will catch up with my new life style. 

To be honest, a part of me misses the chaos and drama.  Maybe I'll return to it someday, but not today.

Today is day 26 of consecutive days at the gym.  That's a new personal best!   
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Delerium on August 06, 2016, 10:08:20 AM
So now I'm abstinent for a time, and life is starting to seem boring. 

This is just a misperception.  My life will catch up with my new life style. 

To be honest, a part of me misses the chaos and drama.  Maybe I'll return to it someday, but not today.

Today is day 26 of consecutive days at the gym.  That's a new personal best!   

Good job! 

I have been thinking the same thing of myself.  I think back on all the drama in my life, much of it was really created by myself.   

There must be a payoff to creating the drama and sometimes I'm good at spotting it, sometimes not.  Maybe it's something to ask yourself, what benefit are you getting from creating drama? 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 07, 2016, 10:31:41 AM
From YBOP, page 113:

"Tip: Limit activities that cause "empty" dopamine highs, such as frequent, intense videogaming, junk food, gambling, trolling Facebook, Tumblr, Twitter and Yahoo, meaningless TV and so forth."

Meaningless TV is a problem for me.   I'm on it.  There's a new App called "Nomo" that lets a person track abstinence from literally anything.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 08, 2016, 06:24:04 AM
Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 09, 2016, 08:06:17 AM
To me, a real life changer has been my workouts.  Today I have 28 consecutive days at the gym.  Today I'm proud to say that I'm going to be late for work, due to my workout.  That's a first. 

I don't think I've ever exercised consecutively more than a week. 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 09, 2016, 09:41:49 PM
Yo.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Delerium on August 10, 2016, 12:14:07 AM
28 consecutive days at the gym?!!?? You're a f*cking machine!! 

I may increase my workouts as well.  May start doing yoga again too.

165 days is astounding, something to aspire to!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 10, 2016, 04:49:24 AM
I stumbled across this on NoFap Emergency, and I think that this is basically what it's all about:  Grit. 

You may have already seen this TED talk on perseverence.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H14bBuluwB8&feature=youtu.be&t=23s
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 10, 2016, 07:05:48 PM
One prayer that worked for me, that I stumbled across on this journey was: "God, please send me someone to love."

It's an unselfish prayer.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 11, 2016, 05:29:36 AM
Today is one month of daily consecutive gym workouts.   That's a personal best.

I've lost about 13 pounds in the last several months, which I needed to lose.  I'm at 182 lbs now, which is a good weight for me.

A daily prayer that I've been able to get some traction out of is "God, please remove my delusions about PMO."

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 12, 2016, 08:31:32 PM
It's worth mentioning that this is not my first rodeo....

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 13, 2016, 02:28:50 AM
Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 15, 2016, 06:00:20 AM
Yo.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 16, 2016, 06:33:53 PM
I'm continuing to work out and lose weight.  Thirty-six consecutive days of gym visits.  Definitely personal best territory.  Who knew?  I see myself posting less frequently, unless a problem arises.    I've been burned and scarred too badly in the past, to ever try to step away from this remedy. 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 18, 2016, 06:20:39 PM
Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 20, 2016, 01:29:37 PM
So I've been at the gym every day.  Some of the issues that have come up:

1.  I'm going through a clumsy phase, dropping stuff, because the muscles in my shoulders, arms, and hands are not used to the new activity.
2.  Having some distantly familiar aches and pains.  Familiar, because I used to have these same aches and pains when I was working out in my 20's, which led me to stop back then.  But I'm working through them this time. 

Gabriel sans porn is a different person all together.

Love to all.  Thanks for your help and support. 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 21, 2016, 09:08:21 AM
The key is righting the ship as it swerves off course.  A heavy work load has been a major trigger in the past.  This time I'm going to deal with it in a healthy way. 

Staying the course.

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 23, 2016, 06:38:39 AM
Hey

The experience I miss the LEAST from practicing my PMO addiction?  Losing an *entire work day* to PMO. 

No thanks!  Not today!

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 24, 2016, 06:56:29 PM
Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 26, 2016, 12:15:09 PM
Hope everyone is having a great day!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 27, 2016, 11:42:55 AM
Am harboring some misplaced anger lately.  I need to channel this anger into something positive that honors God. 

Doing my job at work honors God. 

Just say'in.

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 27, 2016, 12:27:02 PM
OMG I just checked, and I've lost seventeen pounds (7.7kg) in the last 182 days. 

That's a personal best.

Thanks, mankind!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 28, 2016, 05:38:56 AM
Life is good.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on August 28, 2016, 04:58:36 PM
Back from the depths for more inspiration, Gabriel.  Your posts are short and sweet and have a profound effect on me.  I'll put them to better use this time.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 29, 2016, 04:53:22 AM
Yo.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 30, 2016, 07:17:34 PM
Thanks for everything.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on August 30, 2016, 09:49:06 PM
Rock on, Gabriel.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on September 01, 2016, 05:34:53 AM
Having my once-every-ten-years back muscular spasm (?) problem.  Have been laying off the gym for the last couple of days to compensate.  It's much less severe this time, since I am working out daily.  Back in the day I'd end up in the doctor's office begging for muscle relaxants (Flexaril).  Not this time!  :)

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on September 05, 2016, 04:54:01 PM
Went on a spiritual retreat this past weekend.  Really enjoyed it.

I'm back at the gym in full force.  The back problem issue only lasted less than a day.   Woo-hoo!

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: fyg on September 05, 2016, 07:38:55 PM
Great to hear that, Gabriel. Very motivating! Cheers bro.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on September 06, 2016, 05:36:58 AM
Thanks FYG.

Pleased with my progress. 

Tough work day and work week ahead.  Work is usually a trigger.  Having a balanced life helps a lot.

Wish me luck this week.

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: fyg on September 06, 2016, 06:26:38 AM
Stay strong bro. Wishing you luck, I'm sure other RN bro's are too :)
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on September 07, 2016, 12:32:52 PM
Thanks everyone.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on September 07, 2016, 08:10:41 PM
Keep rolling, Gabriel!  Love your journal!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on September 08, 2016, 07:30:05 PM
I've attended over three thousand face-to-face recovery meetings since 1994 to achieve the abstinence I have today.

Cost? I guess you'd have to include the gasoline/petrol to and from each of these 3,000 meetings. It would be a lot of $$$.

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on September 10, 2016, 08:04:02 AM
Yo.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on September 10, 2016, 03:08:43 PM
I've attended over three thousand face-to-face recovery meetings since 1994 to achieve the abstinence I have today.

Cost? I guess you'd have to include the gasoline/petrol to and from each of these 3,000 meetings. It would be a lot of $$$.

Love to all.

You've paid the price and now you're reaping the rewards.  Bravo, Gabriel!

Branch
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on September 11, 2016, 06:35:42 AM
I am just so impressed with YBOP, as helpful literature.  I can't say enough good things about it.  It's so balanced. 

I suppose the shine will wear off, eventually. 

I must say also that my life is enhanced from learning about the "chaser effect."  Up until reading about it, I thought I was a freak of nature.   I discussed it with my spouse, and we've both agreed that, since I'm 55, it's actually pretty cool.

Thanks, mankind. 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on September 11, 2016, 12:36:30 PM
I agree that YBOP, both the book and the website, are incredible resources for fact and insight.  I don't think they'll wear off, though the need to focus as much on them will, as it should.

Wising you well.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on September 13, 2016, 05:05:04 PM
Here are my abstinence dates:
Alcohol - off nineteen years
Credit cards - off nine years
Gambling/gaming - off ten months
Sugar - 172 days
PMO - See below
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on September 14, 2016, 07:02:54 PM
Here are my abstinence dates:
Alcohol - off nineteen years
Credit cards - off nine years
Gambling/gaming - off ten months
Sugar - 172 days
PMO - See below

Impressive!



Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on September 16, 2016, 10:46:14 AM
Yo.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on September 16, 2016, 12:39:39 PM
Yo.

Yo indeed.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on September 18, 2016, 02:06:22 PM
I'm stepping further and further away from thinking and acting compulsively.

What a wonderful way to live.

Thanks everyone.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on September 18, 2016, 08:09:34 PM
I'm stepping further and further away from thinking and acting compulsively.

What a wonderful way to live.

Thanks everyone.

Your entries are like haiku--short and sweet and very meaningful.  Flashes of inspiration and motivation.  Like this one.

Thanks.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on September 19, 2016, 04:40:27 AM
Another challenging day at work. 

Thanks everyone.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on September 19, 2016, 03:56:07 PM
I wanted to put out there another resource I just learned about several months ago. 

More resources are usually better than fewer.

It's free face-to-face group cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) for anyone suffering from an addiction of any kind. 

It's called SMART Recovery.  (You can google it.)

It's basically free face-to-face group therapy (also available on line, I heard) for a wide variety of addictions offered at an international scale.  You'd be amazed how much each of us has in common with heroin and/or crystal meth addicts, and alcoholics.  I just tried it out, and I can recommend it for our situation.  It's free, and it only takes about an hour to go through.  During the meeting you discuss (1) what you're struggling with (PMO), (2) successes, (3) challenges, and how CBT can help.  CBT is an internationally recognized psychological approach to physically, biologically heal from the effects of addiction, obsession or compulsion.  Ask your therapist about it, if you have one.

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on September 23, 2016, 06:32:01 PM
About one month in, I noticed that eating candy and sweets seemed to make me more compulsive.

So this week, I am six months off candy and sweets (desserts, etc...).  That's a personal best.  Also, I've never gone this long with a regular workout routine.  Another personal best.

The people at work are beginning to notice that there's something different about me, and they're commenting to me about it.

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on September 24, 2016, 08:21:01 AM
So I guess this is something I should be journaling about....

I've developed a phobia about running.  I think it's just my PMO disease trying to sabotage my success. 

While running, I will picture myself falling down and getting very seriously injured.  What nonsense!

People don't get seriously injured while running, other than shin splints or Achilles' tendon horrors.  I had a friend who actually shredded his femur from running too much and too fast.   Ha! Place THAT on the bottom of my list of stuff to worry about.   :)  I'm lucky when I can run a 12 minute mile!

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on September 26, 2016, 07:59:49 PM
So I guess this is something I should be journaling about....

I've developed a phobia about running.  I think it's just my PMO disease trying to sabotage my success. 

While running, I will picture myself falling down and getting very seriously injured.  What nonsense!

People don't get seriously injured while running, other than shin splints or Achilles' tendon horrors.  I had a friend who actually shredded his femur from running too much and too fast.   Ha! Place THAT on the bottom of my list of stuff to worry about.   :)  I'm lucky when I can run a 12 minute mile!

Love to all.

Be careful out there.  8)

Congrats on reaching your latest milestone!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on September 27, 2016, 08:05:03 PM
Bad day at the office.  Boy, am I glad I'm clean of PMO today!  Whew!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on September 28, 2016, 01:29:38 AM
Working ridiculous overtime.  In the past, this was a strong trigger. 

Love to all. 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on September 28, 2016, 12:32:57 PM
Bad day at the office.  Boy, am I glad I'm clean of PMO today!  Whew!

To me this speaks volumes.  After a bad day, you're not tempted by porn, but instead see that it's a bad idea that just makes problems worse.  Wow.  Double wow.  You're where I want to be.  I'm adding this to my visions of success. 

Thanks, man.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on September 29, 2016, 04:48:52 AM
Work is brutal.  18 hour work days.  The thing I can hang my hat on though is no PMO.  That's the silver lining.

I can't do this alone.

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on September 29, 2016, 08:08:14 PM
Work is brutal.  18 hour work days.  The thing I can hang my hat on though is no PMO.  That's the silver lining.

I can't do this alone.

Love to all.

Love to you, too.  And best wishes for calmer waters ahead.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: fyg on September 30, 2016, 07:42:28 AM
Great to read your posts, Gabriel. You're truly soldiering through!

Sending positive (((((vibes))))) your way, man  :)
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on September 30, 2016, 05:24:10 PM
Thanks everyone.  I can feel the good karma surrounding me.

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on October 01, 2016, 08:16:55 AM
Yesterday, people at work were commenting on my appearance, wanting to check out my guns. 

I definitely have more energy.

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Branch on October 01, 2016, 03:06:52 PM
Yesterday, people at work were commenting on my appearance, wanting to check out my guns. 

I definitely have more energy.

Love to all.

Cool. 

"Energy is eternal delight."
                 --William Blake

Guns aren't bad, either.

Branch
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on October 01, 2016, 07:41:49 PM
So, with work pressures, I've been a little depressed lately. 

This afternoon, I was listening to a 2012 popular music anthology.  I had to do a double-take of one song about Nebraska called "You and I."  It seemed like a Gospel/Country Music theme?  I was surprised to find out that the song was actually sung by Lady Gaga.    (At the end, she sings of her allegiance to Jesus Christ.)

Thought it would be a cool idea to watch the video of this song.  Thought: this would be safe.   What could go wrong?

Mistake.

Watched less than half of the music video, when I realized that parts of the video were pure porn, which can't be unseen.  (But, it can, over time, be forgotten.)   Clicked out of that mess.

So, I just need to meditate and pray, and go about my day, recognizing that I'm in a sensitive place right now, between being a little depressed, and having those porn images in my head. 

Time fades porn images. 

Aside from all that drama, I had the best day ever at the gym today!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: fyg on October 01, 2016, 07:54:23 PM
It sounds like you're doing great work, Gabriel. Depression can make it more challenging, but your positivity is coming through on your posts. That's how it sounds to me?!

You having the best day at the gym, made me smile! That is so cool to read.

Sorry I haven't been around much - reading these posts is giving me serious motivation!

You've been very busy and productive from the sounds of it, bro. Take care of yourself, like it sounds like you are. Meditation is a great move :)
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on October 03, 2016, 05:18:39 PM
Thanks, man.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Stp215 on October 05, 2016, 01:14:36 PM
Gabriel, I can relate to a lot of what you have posted. There is no doubt in my mind that this thing is 95% mental, 5% physical. When I am abstaining from PMO, I am not feeling strong physical urge to do it. However, I often feel a tremendous urge to do it in my mind. And being idle and/or alone in the house is a case of "idle hands are the tools of the devil." I can distract myself with work, kids, etc. for most of the day. It is the down time that concerns me because that is when my mind drifts to PMO and you convince yourself for whatever reason that "it's OK to do it just once" and next thing you know, you are snowballing back into doing it 2-3 times a day.   
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on October 06, 2016, 03:41:36 AM
The problem is definitely from the neck up. 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on October 06, 2016, 07:49:33 AM
Full body workout today.  Would not have happened if I was PMO'ing.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on October 09, 2016, 01:59:35 AM
Yo. Work is still brutal.  But no PMO!

Woo-hoo!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on October 09, 2016, 10:22:39 AM
Yo.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on October 10, 2016, 06:28:05 AM
This is not my first rodeo.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: clunkjunk on October 10, 2016, 07:32:47 AM
Congrats man. each day a win. Feel the win. Do you feel the win each day?  I think you should practice feeling good .. cos the length of clean behavior you are demonstrating is magnificent.   Very pleased for you.   8) 8)
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on October 10, 2016, 08:24:37 PM
My gym work outs are unbelievable.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on October 14, 2016, 05:12:47 AM
Life.
Life is.
Life is amazing.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on October 16, 2016, 08:52:06 AM
Spent this weekend at a silent men's retreat.  Awesome.  For the past twelve years I've found excellent reasons to ditch, rather than attend, such weekends. 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on October 19, 2016, 06:00:59 PM
Need to pray and meditate some more today.  The solution to all of life's problems:  more meditation.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on October 21, 2016, 06:03:41 AM
Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on October 29, 2016, 10:47:07 PM
Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on November 01, 2016, 06:18:36 AM
Today is my one year anniversary off gambling.  Woo-hoo!

From page 158 of YBOP:

"Is it possible that the teens who grew up with streaming porn and then watched the effects of smartphones on themselves and their peers know more about the impact of internet porn than those who are endeavoring to educate them?"

Have a blessed day!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on November 02, 2016, 05:19:46 PM
I am such a porn junkie.  But, I'm getting a daily reprieve based upon the maintenance of a spiritual condition.

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on November 04, 2016, 02:33:40 PM
From page 161 of YBOP:

"As a matter of science, an attempt to sort good porn from bad is futile.  The brain's reward circuitry, which drives sexual arousal, has no definition of 'porn.'  It just sends a 'go get it!' signal in response to whatever releases sufficient dopamine."

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on November 04, 2016, 03:18:26 PM
I guess here would be the best place to post this.

I signed up for the iPhone porn and sex recovery app "Rtribe" when it first came out in March or April, 2016.  I liked it. 

Well, earlier in October (last month), I noticed that the Rtribe developers were sending out push notifications. 

Rtribe reformatted the website to strongly encourage, (almost felt like require) daily check ins.  That seemed odd, but I rolled with it. 

Then, believe it or not, they began pushing weekly "Recovery Progress" reports.  As if each of us was a construction subcontractor working on the Rtribe building site, and they were the General (Contractor).  Huh? 

I'm not an idiot, and I smelled a developer looking for a buyer (Zuckerberg?), and dusting off their product for sale.  I was an early adopter of FB and LinkedIn, (no longer on either) so I could smell their greed a mile away. 

Not that I blame them.  Not. One. Bit.

My thoughts immediately turned to the Ashley Madison data hack, and those Rtribe idiots being too stupid to know what they were doing,  and I called them on it.  Rtribe played it all:  "No, we're just here to help." 

Right.

And I'm Angela Lansbury. 

Anyway, I revised my iPhone rating for the app to one star, explained why, and deleted my account. 

Within days, iPhone deleted all 28 five star ratings for the app, and reported that the app was "too new to summarize ratings." 

And that was that. 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on November 04, 2016, 04:18:45 PM
Just read on the YBOP website that virtual reality (VR) porn could spell the end of humanity (as we know it). 

I believe it.  Glad I got out when I did! 

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on November 06, 2016, 09:27:31 AM
From page 162 of YBOP:

"Let's steer the debate away from unscientific distractions and back to the effects on porn users and the hard science that helps explain what they're experiencing."

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on November 07, 2016, 08:46:00 AM
Just received this today.  Caution:  STEEP learning curve ahead:

"Hi Tribers!

The Tribe is growing and we wanted to let you know about some positions we are looking to fill.
If you want to change the world of addiction treatment/recovery and are looking for your next gig, listen up!
C Level. If you have been a COO, CFO, CEO we’d love to hear from you. We are looking for an experienced senior player who has had a successful exit or solid career in tech. Ideally, someone who has scaled a company related to mental health or had social connecting as a core component.
CTO. R|TRIBE has a spot for a CTO who is incredibly dedicated and passionate about our mission, is an insatiable learner and passes the burrito test.  Ideally, looking for candidates who have had a successful exit and have scaled a platform similar to R|TRIBE’s.  
To learn more contact alex@rtribe.org.

Alex and the rTribe Team"

Each of these people at rTribe ought to run things like this by their respective Psychiatrists, first.
 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: jjacks on November 07, 2016, 10:41:24 AM
LOL

I routinely call these phone based "apps" "anti-social media". Facebook is really don't-face-anything book.

Nothing beats real human interaction. Each of us will resolve this in the time we spend away from the computer, not in front of it.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on November 11, 2016, 03:44:56 PM
Agreed.

Arriving here always reminds me how important it is for me to try to meditate one hour a day.

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on November 12, 2016, 11:00:31 PM
Yo.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on November 13, 2016, 02:29:14 PM
One of the things I decided about eight years ago to accomplish was to "make friends with my demons."  This was based upon the sage advice: "Keep your friends close, and your enemies closer."  The fact is that my demons and I have to share the same skull/body/organs.  I might as well get to know them, and yes, even make friends with them. 

I've noticed that chronic relapsers of all types can not get their arms around this concept, and think the idea of making friends with their demons stinks.  I'm not so sure. 

It doesn't mean that I have to agree with my demons, or become co-dependent on them.   Just make friends.  It seems to have worked for me.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on November 13, 2016, 03:03:31 PM
I must say that my weight-lifting is blowing my mind.    Wow.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on November 13, 2016, 09:02:14 PM
OK I need to blog about this. 

I was not adopted.  My uncles on both sides of my family (on both my mother's and on my Dad's side of the family, as well as my Dad)  all have full heads of hair.  I always expected to retain a full head of hair as I grew older. 

However, I'm going bald.

We now know that excess testosterone production causes male baldness.  It is what it is. 

I have to acknowledge that PMO creates excess testosterone, and my excess testosterone is making me bald.  So, PMO causes baldness. 

You don't have to be a medical researcher to figure it out.   It is what it is. 

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on November 13, 2016, 09:21:25 PM
Back in the 1990's and early 2000's, they were recommending everybody to read John Bradshaw's book "Healing the Shame that Binds You."  It used to be required reading in the recovery community, but I just sent a copy to a friend, and it was only available online. 

If you're old enough, you may remember that Bradshaw had a U.S. PBS TV series.   He was really popular in the 1990's.   

He died this year. 

Great book.  I re-read it recently.  Great stuff!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on November 15, 2016, 10:57:21 AM
Yo.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on November 18, 2016, 06:40:22 AM
Did my one hour meditation this morning, and read YBOP.  Sometimes fitting in meditation is a real pain. 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on November 20, 2016, 09:56:36 PM
Just returned from spending the weekend visiting my Dad.  He's in a nursing home a six hour drive away (each way).  He's an 89 year old narcissistic pain in the rear.   It's very disruptive to my week and my concentration, and not great for my self esteem.  I spend most of my time in therapy talking about him. 

Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on November 24, 2016, 01:20:29 AM
Thrilled and humbled by my progress. 

The solution:  always more meditation. 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on November 25, 2016, 06:42:38 PM
Yo.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on December 02, 2016, 12:42:36 PM
So I've never had a problem with looking at Porn without the M and the O. My default was always "What's the point? Why bother looking at porn unless you're also going to M and O?"

Within the last two weeks, that has, to my surprise, changed. Now, I have on more than one occasion, looked at porn without the M/O.

So, I'm taking it to this blog.

Alcohol - Nineteen years
Credit cards - nine years
Gambling - one year
Sugar - eight months
Rage - one week
Porn - three days
PMO - see below

Not certain where this is going to take me, but I'm along for the ride!

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on December 03, 2016, 10:05:42 AM
Great, lengthy meditation this morning.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on December 04, 2016, 10:36:44 AM
Great meditation this morning.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on December 08, 2016, 06:11:35 AM
Yo.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on December 09, 2016, 06:43:23 AM
Nine days porn free.

Yahoo!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on December 14, 2016, 11:08:42 PM
Yo.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: DavidRI on December 16, 2016, 07:04:35 AM
Gab', I am on my second day of PMO freedom.  The title of this blog thread ("The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot) caught my eye, so I started reading it from the beginning.  Thank you for posting your thoughts over the past several months.  Those posts are really helpful to me. 

In any event, I am four (4) hours away from the 48-hour milestone.  I am off to exercise and daily mass. 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: DavidRI on December 17, 2016, 08:02:10 AM
As I approach my third full day of PMO freedom, I feel great.  I am motivated.  This morning I did have the urge to get aroused and masturbate, but laughed it off, and it passed.  Over the last few days of PMO freedom, I've kept in mind the research that I did on the neuro-chemical autopilot; that is, each time I get the urge to have phone sex, text sex or to view porn, I remind myself that I am damaging my brain. 

To say it another way, by PMO'ing I am un-learning how to be truly intimate.  By PMO'ing, I am un-learning how to develop a meaningful bond with the woman I love (who I am presently separated from due to my infidelity).  Since I am not inclined to act in a way that damages myself, the thinking goes, I have (thus far) have been able to push off the urge to PMO.  That's my secular approach.

Since I am Catholic, I dovetail the logic of not damaging my physical self with my faith.  Namely, when I've gotten the urge to PMO, I realize that it is the devil exploiting a weakness, a momentary low point, in my God-given free will to gain entry.  To make me sin.  Picture the cartoon'ish image of the devil on one shoulder whispering in my ear, and an angle on the other whispering, too.  For the past three (3) days, I've been able to push off the devil's whispers! 

Since I not inclined to do damage to my brain, and avoiding sin is in keeping with my faith, I have not PMO'ed.   

That's my "Keep it Simple, Stupid" approach to this. 

Thank you to all who post on Reboot Nation; for your stories and experiences really help me to put the compulsion to PMO behind me. 

Merry Christmas!!!! 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: DavidRI on December 18, 2016, 06:33:53 AM
It's day four (4) for me.  I woke up at 5 a.m. this morning and had the urge to masturbate before getting out of bed.  I fantasized about two past lovers as I laid in bed.  I took a deep breath or two and it passed.  I jumped out of bed and put on a pot of coffee.

A quick summary.  My habit was not necessarily porn per se, but dating websites.  From there I would I have cybersex, text sex and phone sex with women.  Sometimes, thought not often, I would meet those women.  I did watch some porn, too. 

In any event, on this fourth day, there is something I am noticing about myself.  Before I stopped PMO'ing, I would wake up each day with an erection and completely aroused.  As I progressed through each of these four days without PMO'ing, I don't wake up in an aroused, erect state.  Not sure what this means, but I thought I would make a note of it. 

It is also worth noting that I feel better as each day passes.  I was able to complete more  items on my daily "to do" list.  I've been eating healthy and exercising, too. 

Thank God for Reboot Nation and "Your Brain on Porn".  The candid posts on these websites have been the greatest help for me. 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on December 20, 2016, 07:56:13 AM
Alcohol - Nineteen years
Credit cards - nine years
Gambling - one year
Sugar - eight months
Rage - three weeks
Porn - twenty days
PMO - see below

Merry Christmas and Happy Whatever-Else-You're-Celebrating.

Over the weekend, we adopted a four year old Yellow Lab.  His previous owner died in a freak car accident, and the family couldn't handle him due to his size and strength.   He's a very strong dog.  Like this...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=07cjVcykgRo

Luckily, due to this PMO thing, I've been working out!!!  Woo-hoo!  The dog likes to wrestle and be carried where he is supposed to go (for now).  Not always fun, but do-able.   

May we all remain abstinent!!!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on December 27, 2016, 06:21:25 PM
Love my new four year old yellow Lab.  He has played a big role in our having a Merry Christmas.

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on December 29, 2016, 08:27:33 AM
Sometimes the desire to PMO is so strong, it brings tears to my eyes. It is what it is.

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on January 02, 2017, 08:17:32 AM
Hi All

We all need to acknowledge our successes, however miniscule, along the way.

Alcohol - Nineteen years
Credit cards - nine years
Social media - five years
Gambling - one year
Sugar - nine months
Rage - one week
Porn - three days
YouTube - three days
Reddit - three days
PMO - see below

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on January 12, 2017, 06:26:00 AM
I must say that getting off sugar, which I embarked on as a result of effort to get off PMO, has had a profound effect on me. I'm experiencing some pretty profound life changing experiences, which trace back to my getting off PMO.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: malando on January 12, 2017, 06:30:39 AM
I recently quit sugar too. After going through an initial flat spot, I am noticing now that I am getting my energy back and it's more stable and consistent. I think the process of getting off sugar is remarkably similar to getting off porn in a lot of ways. I'd say if somebody can get off sugar for 90 days, by that stage the cravings will be largely gone and other more positive effects will have kicked in - weightless, better energy, improved health etc. We need to get off all the addiction that enslave us.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Karzam on January 13, 2017, 02:03:37 AM
I must say that getting off sugar, which I embarked on as a result of effort to get off PMO, has had a profound effect on me. I'm experiencing some pretty profound life changing experiences, which trace back to my getting off PMO.

I've been thinking about this one as well, I don't eat a huge amount of refined sugar, but I don't think it's doing me much good either...strangely enough, I think it'll be tougher than the no PMO for me, partially because I can indulge in some comfort eating...

Do you have any tips for starting? Aside from not eating it, heh. :)
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: malando on January 13, 2017, 05:59:09 AM
I must say that getting off sugar, which I embarked on as a result of effort to get off PMO, has had a profound effect on me. I'm experiencing some pretty profound life changing experiences, which trace back to my getting off PMO.

I've been thinking about this one as well, I don't eat a huge amount of refined sugar, but I don't think it's doing me much good either...strangely enough, I think it'll be tougher than the no PMO for me, partially because I can indulge in some comfort eating...

Do you have any tips for starting? Aside from not eating it, heh. :)

I didn't just quit sugar, I have also cut all carbohydrates down to less than 10% of my diet. For me, bread, rice, pasta, grains, etc - none of it is good for me. It gives short term energy, but it's followed by a crash. I'm focussing on good nutrition though good fats, meat, salads, veggies, yogurt. Nothing low fat. My body is adapting to using fat and protein as its main energy source. I've got more stamina than before and I'm dropping weight because my body isn't on the constant sugar/insulin rollercoaster.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on January 24, 2017, 07:07:48 AM
Yo.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on January 31, 2017, 12:12:10 PM
Have not been exercising since we brought home the dog last month. Made it to the gym today though!

Looking to get back in the saddle with my morning workouts. That's my new mountain to climb.

Also read YBOP today.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on February 01, 2017, 07:47:14 PM
Need to go running tonight. Ugh! Don't want to. Know that it's good for me.

Did my morning meditation and read YBOP this morning.

Love to all.
 
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on February 03, 2017, 01:30:39 PM
Yo.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on February 15, 2017, 10:01:43 AM
Yo.

This blog is helping tremendously. It continues to do so. Meditated and read YBOP this morning.

Alcohol - Nineteen years
Credit cards - nine years
Social media - five years
Gambling - one year
Sugar - ten months
Rage - two months
Porn - one day
YouTube - three days
Reddit - zero days
PMO - see below

Assuming I make it to one year, it will be a messy finish line. That's life.

My experience has been: early milestones are almost always messy.

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on February 17, 2017, 06:17:42 AM
Yo.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on February 22, 2017, 12:36:10 PM
I need to turn to guided meditation, rather than reddit.com, to address stress.

Being informed is overrated.

Alcohol - Nineteen years
Credit cards - nine years
Social media - five years
Gambling - one year
Sugar - Eleven months
Rage - two months
Porn - one week
YouTube - one day
Reddit.com - zero days
PMO - see below

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on February 26, 2017, 08:36:33 AM
Made it! Hooray!

Alcohol - Nineteen years
Credit cards - nine years
Social media - five years
Gambling - one year
Sugar - Eleven months
Rage - two months
Porn - eleven days
YouTube - one day
Reddit.com - zero days
PMO - one year

Amazing!  Totally worth it.

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Firstbigstep on February 26, 2017, 08:53:07 AM
Fantastic achievement! A year is amazing!

I'm about a third of the way and doing ok - Trying to address one issue at a time, but porn use has been the big one that affects so much of my self esteem and identity.

Next targets:

Smoking
Sugar
Carbs
Reduction in drinking.

Thanks for the inspiration.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on February 27, 2017, 12:11:30 PM
Worth it.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 01, 2017, 09:14:49 AM
It's great to know that I'm not alone.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Firstbigstep on March 02, 2017, 12:08:09 PM
You definitely are not alone - there's a lot of fellow sufferers and rebooters out here!

Well done on your achievements
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 07, 2017, 01:03:39 PM
A new focus of my porn recovery is finding new activities to at least replace what PMO used to provide me. The new activities need to at least provide me with exactly the same level of stimulus response that PMO used to provide, or better. These activities are out there. I just need to find them all.

I need to create a list. Wish me luck!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: workinprogressUK on March 08, 2017, 05:29:25 AM
That's the key, isn't it? Once you've fought through the early stages, it's about enriching your life with enough healthy stimuli to avoid leaving an unhealthy vacuum for your PMO to sneak back into. Skydiving... Leaf pressing... Playing the harp... Sculpting... whatever floats your boat!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Firstbigstep on March 15, 2017, 07:29:29 AM
Totally on the money!

I suddenly realised how many hours, days, weeks, months and probably years of my life I'd spent on porn. WHAT A WASTE!

Still, through another RN member, I was introduced to the Buddhist concept of being shot by the second arrow. There is no point in giving myself a hard time for what is past - I just need to excercise enough self control to not repeat those mistakes.

I'm trying to deal with some health issues at present, I feel very old as I need to address vision, hearing, perpetual backache and hip joint pain. With all that going on, I can't read , listening to music is reduced and running is currently a painful process. Not sure what else I fancy at present!

But I have a quiet week on the horizon, so I hope to get some of this sorted out - I really enjoyed doing a few 5k Saturday morning runs and I'd like to get back into some veg growing. Bring it on...

Thanks for your inspiration and for sharing - I'm constantly amazed by the commonality of experience this site shows.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on March 28, 2017, 08:46:59 AM
Alcohol - Nineteen years
Credit cards - nine years
Social media - five years
Gambling - one year
Sugar - one year!!!
Rage - two weeks
Porn - a week
Reddit.com - a week
PMO - 13 months

Read my YBOP today.

Today my appetite for porn is a call for more exercise.


Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: 40New30 on March 28, 2017, 12:15:56 PM
I need more exercise too!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on April 24, 2017, 10:04:05 AM
Taking the harm reduction approach now, which is working very well!

Alcohol - Twenty years
Credit cards - nine years
Social media - five years
Gambling - one year
Sugar - One year
Rage - three months
Porn - two days
YouTube - two weeks
Reddit.com - zero days
PMO - one year

I need and want to be at the gym every day.  Easier said than done. 

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: guyinsideout on April 27, 2017, 11:14:01 AM
Read much of your journal today, thanks for the inspiration Gabriel. Just starting my recovery, gain hope from the experiences shared on this forum. Fascinating how similar everyone's road to get here is.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 03, 2017, 07:47:07 AM
Alcohol - Twenty years
Credit cards - nine years
Social media - five years
Gambling - one year
Sugar - One year
Rage - three months
Porn - two days
YouTube - two weeks
Reddit.com - zero days
PMO - over one year

I've been working my ass off on releasing this porn thing, and I'm getting pretty close.

This week I've come to terms with the reality that I've got an emotional attachment (call it an "addiction" if you will) to self disgust. I've come to learn to enjoy and even find comfort in the self disgust provided by porn. That's a surprise, and not a place where I want to be today. It's good to know this.

Secondly, I've listed many, many reasons to step away from porn, but the only one I can find that is sufficiently compelling for me to end porn use, is the emotional distress I always experience during and after using it. That, for me, is a compelling reason to quit. I might be stressed, or distressed, before choosing to use porn, but I'm *definitely* emotionally distressed during and after using it.

The porn-induced emotional distress is real, tangible, and even measureable. It's worth it for me to give up the emotional distress that porn always gives rise to.

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 05, 2017, 07:48:44 AM
My focus is (what in AA they call) "emotional sobriety."

Porn for me is an emotional relapse, only 100% of the time. PMO, or no PMO.

Today my focus is emotional sobriety, which necessarily means living porn free.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 07, 2017, 02:23:14 PM
Alcohol - Twenty years
Credit cards - nine years
Social media - five years
Gambling - one year
Sugar - One year
Rage - three months
Porn - a week, since April 30th
YouTube - a day
Reddit.com - zero days
PMO - over one year

I'm kind of free-falling with YouTube and Reddit, but I'm so pleased with being released from porn, that I'm not worrying about it.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: workinprogressUK on May 09, 2017, 03:24:58 AM
This week I've come to terms with the reality that I've got an emotional attachment (call it an "addiction" if you will) to self disgust. I've come to learn to enjoy and even find comfort in the self disgust provided by porn. That's a surprise, and not a place where I want to be today. It's good to know this.

Ditto that attachment, Gabe. Thanks for sharing. My deepest seated addiction is to self-loathing. I've come up with any number of new and creative ways to be disgusted with myself. Some sort of twisted logic that if I'm already disgusted with myself.... then it won't hurt when somebody else says they're disgusted with me. Makes perfect sense to me  ;D :o

Thankfully, I'm slowly managing to drag that anchor. Making some progress away from it. Slow and imperfect progress it is.... but the longer I maintain my own version of "emotional sobriety".... the more balanced a self-view I have.

Wishing you every strength in kicking that porn attachment. Serenity, Courage, Wisdom and all that.
Title: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 14, 2017, 11:48:49 AM
Ditto W-I-P.

Alcohol - Twenty years
Credit cards - nine years
Social media - five years
Gambling - one year
Sugar - One year
Rage - three months
Porn - two weeks
YouTube - zero days
Reddit.com - zero days
PMO - over one year

My next frontier is abstaining from intense emotions and, separately, solo internet use (except for work or health related blogs, like this one). That includes news media sites. Woo-hoo! I'll return to them someday down the road, but for now, it's abstinence from strong emotions, and internet media abstinence, time.

This will *definitely* make my life fuller and more joyful, and less isolated!! Hooray!
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on May 24, 2017, 07:03:19 PM
Porn - over three weeks
YouTube - week and a half
Reddit.com - week and a half
PMO - over one year

Finding myself reading a lot more. That's awesome.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 05, 2017, 07:24:49 PM
Porn - over a month.

Remaining off of the media sites. Find myself better at taking care of personal and financial tasks, as a result.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on June 13, 2017, 08:01:13 AM
I've used porn in the past to help smooth out my emotions. Now that I'm not using porn, I have to deal with these strong emotional outbursts. That's my new frontier.
My last emotional outburst was on 6/7/17. I'd like to get some abstinence together in that area.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on July 18, 2017, 09:23:00 PM
I now have 21 days off PMO.
I visited my 92 year old excuse for a father (Jerry) about 21 days ago, and he was his usual upsetting, annoying self.  I got so upset, that I turned to sugar, and then to PMO, is calm down. It did calm me down. Now I have 21 days off sugar and PMO.
It's been suggested that I exclude Jerry from my life. I'm heading in that direction.
I need to make my mental and emotional health my supreme goal. Need to let them (Jerry and another relative) know that I need to remove myself from the situation to maintain my own sanity......for health reasons.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: Gabriel1960 on August 09, 2017, 07:19:03 PM
Having some trouble with the counter.

I have 43 days today.  Really pleased with my progress!

Love to all.
Title: Re: My Journal: The Neuro-Chemical Autopilot
Post by: zzz on August 09, 2017, 08:16:51 PM
That's awesome man !

Regards your prev post .. something about the way you wrote it .. it's like we have this subtle notion that if things get hard enough or we you get upset enough then it's ok to PMO etc ... like above a certain threshold of bad in our personal lives PMO becomes acceptable ... but hey, that's like a wife basher saying 'I know I promised never to do it again but I got terribly upset ...

It's the classic addiction thing .. the secret contracts we make with ourselves where we can transgress under certain conditions ...

But we can do better .. how about 'no matter how upset dad will make me I will never PMO again ever' ...