Author Topic: A Better Tomorrow  (Read 7334 times)

mattdes

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #100 on: October 26, 2019, 03:02:42 PM »
Well done man. Your detailed and analyzed reports are very helpful. I read through them and i feel very lazy for not putting the same effort into posts. Maybe it's time I followed your example. Keep going strong pal. You are helping others with your posts.

NewStart04

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #101 on: October 28, 2019, 02:10:15 PM »
switcheroc

Thanks for the kind words. I appreciate it.

I think I've gotten to the point where it won't be "easy" per se, but that it's a given. I'm done. I just have to the run the gauntlet of recovery, emerging battered and bruised, but in the end a lot more resilient. Looking forward to it.

Take care

NewStart04

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #102 on: October 28, 2019, 02:12:41 PM »
mattdes

We all have things that work for us. It's about experimentation. I definitely recommend at least trying it out, but in the end it might not be for you. Feel free to copy the format entirely, but tweaking it to match your needs might be the best approach.

Take care

NewStart04

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #103 on: October 28, 2019, 02:13:07 PM »
October 26, 2019
- Day 9 (No porn)
- Day 3 (Masturbation, orgasm, or intentional fantasy)


Writing this two days after the fact, so it’ll be a short entry. I was out all day with a friend, and, for me at least, being outside my place and spending time with people is a surefire antidote for not relapsing. So was the case.

NewStart04

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #104 on: October 28, 2019, 02:13:30 PM »
October 27, 2019
- Day 10 (No porn)
- Day 4 (Masturbation, orgasm, or intentional fantasy)


Again, after the fact so a short entry. Not the best day to be honest, but still clean. Sleep can be a struggle at times.
     


NewStart04

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #105 on: October 29, 2019, 07:54:00 PM »
October 28, 2019
- Day 11 (No porn)
- Day 5 (No masturbation, orgasm, or intentional fantasy)


Another day down. For the first time in who knows how long, I actually turned to reading a book when I had difficulty falling asleep. What I’ve read so far has been a good read. For those of you who practice/are interested in meditation, I recommend it. It’s called On Having No Head, written by Douglas Harding. So far, he is doing a great job of describing things like the loss of self. It's amazing how some people are so gifted at conveying thoughts and experience through language.

Also, I finally finished watching through all of Noah B.E. Church’s YouTube channel. I’ll continue to watch any new content he adds, but it feels nice to have finished my mini-goal of watching all of his and The Reboot Nation’s videos. Tons of great content on both channels, and I really recommend the YBR Radio podcast series (missing episode here) on Noah’s channel. Be forewarned that it’s 15 episodes in total at about an hour per episode. I really wish that the two channels had more subscribers and views. It’s a shame they don’t.

NewStart04

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #106 on: October 30, 2019, 06:10:41 PM »
October 29, 2019
- Day 12 (No porn)
- Day 6 (No masturbation, orgasm, or intentional fantasy)


Wow, I’m on a roll with these “after-the-fact” entries. I’ll try to get back to my normal format, as it helps me fully flesh out how the day went and makes it easier for me to track my progress.

Anyway, yesterday was ok, but the evening was tough. It culminated with me being on the computer, looking at something on Google Images—not sexual, but very triggering—and getting blindsided by urges. But I knew the drill, so I shut down my computer and went to bed. Mindfulness 3, urges 0.

NewStart04

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #107 on: October 31, 2019, 04:24:33 AM »
October 30, 2019
- Day 13 (No porn)
- Day 7 (No masturbation, orgasm, or intentional fantasy)

Remarks/Summary of the Day:
Well, here I am, back to the normal format! My sleep schedule has been pretty terrible for a while now. Not sure how much of this is due to the ups and downs of recovery, how much of it is due to poor choices on my part, and how much is due to natural causes. I want to go through a few more weeks (maybe even months) of hard mode before I think more about this. It’ll make the decision making process easier and more focused.

Nothing of note happened today, but urges and emotions were particularly tough this evening. But I made it through regardless. Can’t have it any other way ; ) I told you all I’ll prove that I have it in me to put this addiction in the past where it belongs. Actions speak louder than words right?

Trigger / Response Log:

Cooking a bunch of food that was moldy, realizing that after cooking it and eating a little, having to throw it all away -> Taking a break from cooking and doing something else
Feeling discomfort in my gut caused by drinking too much caffeine -> Being mindful of the feeling without adding anything on to it
Wasting time on the computer (YouTube) -> Separating myself from the computer and moving somewhere else
Feeling painful emotions like anxiety, pointlessness -> Being mindful, relocating

Urges:
For the last third of the day, I felt what I refer to as an “urge cloud”. This is essentially a general feeling of horniness that I get, which persists across a period of time and makes me susceptible to feeling urges for the entirety of its duration. So I decided to do my first sitting meditation for a while, 40 minutes total. It was tough. Really hard to be mindful. My mind was mostly lost in thought. Intense feelings of pointlessness and anxiety emerged, and right when my timer went off, I had the thought of looking up types of “2D” VR that I didn’t see during my last relapse flash in my head. What’s worse, I had my phone in my bedroom—because of the impromptu meditation session—which is something I always try to avoid. Oh boy, the thought of looking up amateur homemade “2D” VR porn was so novel and arousing…and also so out of the question. I turned that digital devil off, and instead came upstairs to write this entry so that I could go to bed. That was a great choice to make. No doubt about it.

Emotions:
I mentioned it above, but I felt strong pangs of anxiety and pointlessness this evening. I also generally felt irritable throughout the day.

Cognition:
I don’t feel like I am making much headway here at all…but that’s ok. Even if this is the true nature of my cognition, then that’s ok. Doesn’t mean I won’t welcome any improvements in this category if they do come. I just have to work with what I got.

Pain:
A bit of stinging here and there, but I think this is consistently getting better.

* Something positive / something I did well:

- Got a little high off the energy of all the people in the park today while I was doing my walking meditation. The parents, the kids, the dogs, and the sunlight. More of this please. I love when normal, everyday experience feels good

NewStart04

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #108 on: November 02, 2019, 01:22:40 AM »
October 31, 2019
- Day 14 (No porn)
- Day 8 (No masturbation, orgasm, or intentional fantasy)


Remarks/Summary of the Day:
Another after the fact entry, but I’ll try to keep this post in my normal format. The day felt kind of grey and mediocre, but that’s fine. I took some Ritalin for the first time in years, as I have adult ADHD and wanted to see if I noticed any benefits from taking it. Suffice it to say, it didn’t help and instead amplified aspects of myself I’d rather not have amplified. I had some strong urges that hit me during the evening that lasted for a couple of hours while I was in bed. Not sure if the Ritalin had any role to play here, but I made it through regardless.

Oh yea, I watched a movie at a theater in the evening, and partway through the film, two people from the audience got in an extremely heated argument (i.e. a shoutfest), which ballooned after members of their families joined in. At one point, the person nearest me (two seats away) fell on top of me, apparently too engrossed in their screaming fit of rage. I kept my cool throughout though, which was nice. At one point, I was getting ready to calmly leave the theater to inform a staff member in case things devolved into all an out fistfight, but thankfully things cooled down.

Trigger / Response Log:
Nothing specific here. I think the hours of urges I had last night resulted from being in a fatigued state but not being unable to fall asleep. I’ve relapsed many times because of this precise state. But not this time. Nor the next.

Urges:
See trigger/response log.

Emotions:
Things just felt kind of grey and crappy for most of the day. The onslaught of urges made me feel some pronounced irritability in the evening.

Cognition:
Seems like I am not gaining any ground here. Continued brain fog and poor verbal fluency.

Pain:
Ok I think.

* Something positive / something I did well:
- Didn’t let a substance’s effect on me serve as an excuse to question recovery

NewStart04

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #109 on: November 02, 2019, 04:26:01 AM »
November 1, 2019
- Day 15 (No porn)
- Day 9 (No masturbation, orgasm, or intentional fantasy)


Remarks/Summary of the Day:

A bit like yesterday, though I felt a little more productive and the evening wasn’t as tough to get through. I felt a “hangover” of sorts from the Ritalin in the morning and early afternoon. Maybe a better comparison would be that permabaked feeling you get the next morning after smoking too much weed. Except worse.

I did go for a long drive today and took a walk down a nice little trail. It was during the sunset, which was pretty beautiful. I also encountered a group of deer. They weren’t all that spooked by my presence, so I just stood there observing them for a little.

Trigger / Response Log:
Didn’t note any specific examples today.

Urges:
Had one of those “urge clouds” I mentioned in an earlier entry. During the evening. Lasted 2-3 hours.

Emotions:

Like yesterday, but more anxiety instead of irritability in the evening.

Cognition:

Same old, same old.

Pain:
Nothing noticeable.

* Something positive / something I did well:
- Remembering that this is a process that I can’t control when I was ruminating over the fact that the last couple of days have been back to back unpleasant overall. It just needs to run its course. I haven’t even been off for a month yet. Slow and steady.

NewStart04

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #110 on: November 03, 2019, 04:00:51 AM »
November 2, 2019
- Day 16 (No porn)
- Day 10 (No masturbation, orgasm, or intentional fantasy)


Remarks/Summary of the Day:
Today was alright. Not as grey as the past two days. Productivity was…ok, not awful. Had a nice sitting meditation session today. The sun was intense, but it was one of the better ones I’ve had in a while. I still like the walking ones though. There are so many distractions that you encounter when walking through the city, so I think it is a good way to train mindfulness, but damn these sitting ones have their perks too.

Read some more of Harding’s On Having No Head. He really is gifted at describing the meditative experience. I’d include some quotes from the text, but it might be a bit esoteric (or even ostensibly nonsensical, although that definitely isn’t the case), so I’ll refrain from doing so.

I haven’t mentioned this before, but I started doing monthly video messages to my “future self” about three months ago, and today is the day of my fourth video, which I will record after this journal entry. I watched the one from last month—for the first time since I recorded it, that’s how I always do it—and comparing how I feel now to then, I would say that I am in a similar place, maybe a little better overall, which is completely fine with me. I’m just glad that things aren’t worse.

Going to a friend’s wedding tomorrow. Should be great!

Trigger / Response Log:
Wasting time on the computer -> Talking to someone
Wasting time on YouTube -> Relocating
Boredom -> Moving around
Feeling anxiety caused by poor reading comprehension and focus -> Switching to another task

Urges:
The daytime was fine for the most part, but the evening was subsumed by a few hours of horniness and urges. I’ve really been buffeted by them these past couple of evenings, but that’s fine. Bring it. Give me everything you got. You’ll tire eventually, not me. Every time I'm challenged, I persevere. No porn. No masturbation. No fantasies. Don't need any of it. It's so difficult but at the same time so simple. Mindfulness to the rescue.

Emotions:
Felt anxiety throughout the day, particularly during the evening.

Cognition:
Verbal fluency was up a little perhaps. Same goes for brain fog.

Pain:
A little bit of dull aching in the evening, but otherwise fine.

* Something positive / something I did well:

- Reading a little today. I’ve been doing poorly in this category recently, as my cognition has been pretty awful. At least I tried to engage for a bit. Looking forward to some change in cognition next week, but I'll see what happens.

NewStart04

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #111 on: November 04, 2019, 06:35:40 PM »
November 3, 2019
- Day 17 (No porn)
- Day 11 (No masturbation, orgasm, or intentional fantasy)

This will be a short entry not in the usual format. Went to a friend’s wedding yesterday. It was nice. My urges, mood, and withdrawals were all over the place, but I think I handled myself well all things considered. These day-long special events can be difficult for me as they disrupt the daily regimen I am working diligently on building, but I also know that these events are a normal part of life, and I just have to experiment and adjust more with how to incorporate them into a structured life. As a quick aside, my poor verbal fluency really hit me today. It was frustrating, but I know there is no reason to ruminate over it.

Anyway, after I got back home—pretty late, around 12:30 AM—I felt the restless, disorienting effects of the event. I was exhausted and had difficulty falling asleep again, plus an hour or two of depression and an hour of urges. Eventually managed to go to sleep though. No danger of turning to porn or masturbation. I just dealt with the feelings, giving them the time they needed to die down.
     


NewStart04

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #112 on: November 05, 2019, 10:46:21 PM »
November 4, 2019
- Day 18 (No porn)
- Day 12 (No masturbation, orgasm, or intentional fantasy)


Remarks/Summary of the Day:
Whew, today—well at the time of writing this yesterday—was tough! Depression and lethargy all day. Productivity close to 0. I don’t want to remember it to be honest, but it’s done and I made it through. I went for a long drive during the evening, kind of like an amusement park with lots of curves. I also drove through some thick fog, like something out of a movie or video game. It was quite picturesque.

Trigger / Response Log:
Didn’t log any.

Urges:
They kept popping up, probably because I wanted an outlet to escape the sea of depression. Nothing too intense thankfully.

Emotions:
Depression all day. Mindfulness really helps with days like this.

Cognition:

Pretty much untested, though it still felt the same as usual, i.e. like a dull knife that can’t cut much of anything.

Pain:
Nothing noticeable. The other categories should catch up to this in time. Just need to be patient.

* Something positive / something I did well:

- Didn’t let the depression guide my behavior and decisions

NewStart04

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #113 on: November 06, 2019, 06:48:22 PM »
November 5, 2019
- Day 19 (No porn)
- Day 13 (No masturbation, orgasm, or intentional fantasy)

Remarks/Summary of the Day:
Nothing of note during the daytime. Was moderately productive, I suppose. Some depression again in the evening, and then some intense feelings of horniness, where your gut is clenching really intensely and you primitively just want to stick your **** into something. That was tough to deal with, but another day down. I know I am still early on in the recovery process, but it feels like it is going to be a few more weeks of this roller coaster until the suffering consistently begins to dampen.

Trigger / Response Log:
Procrastinating -> Sitting with the feeling and letting it run its course, instead of pushing myself to get something done
Wasting time on the computer -> Getting away from the computer
Eating too much ice cream (haha, what am I, four years old? ; p) -> Stopping what I was doing and relaxing
Struggling with reading comprehension -> Taking a break and doing something else

Urges:
An unintentional image of vigorously taking someone doggy-style flashed in my head, and this lead to an explosion of horniness within me that went up and down like a sinusoidal wave for an hour or two. Just when I thought it was dying down and I was in the green, it’d flare up again.

Emotions:
Some depression in the evening. Felt okay otherwise.

Cognition:
I was able to—for the first time in a while—return to some of the reading I had done and go over my notes and the concepts contained within. I wasn’t able to last too long however, but I hope to see this slowly improve with time. I want my brain back!

Pain:
A little bit of stinging, perhaps from some random erections I experienced while sleeping.

* Something positive / something I did well:

- Helped the cashier at the supermarket
- Was a little more productive than usual

NewStart04

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #114 on: November 07, 2019, 04:00:38 AM »
November 6, 2019
- Day 20 (No porn)
- Day 14 (No masturbation, orgasm, or intentional fantasy)


Remarks/Summary of the Day:
Slept in really late today. I’ve always had difficulties with sleep, something I’ve struggled with my whole life since I was a kid. But I have had rare periods where I was able to maintain a sleep schedule truly divine. Where you are able to fall asleep soon after getting into bed. The land of slumber is welcoming, beckoning, readily accessible, and you are able to just drift away into the realm of the unconscious. And you wake up in the morning, naturally, no need for an alarm. You don’t feel groggy. You don’t feel glued to the bed. You don’t feel the malaise of having to start a new day.

I think I have enough pieces in place now to strive for more consistency in this category. Sleep is so fundamental. If various changes are necessary for it to become more consistent, then so be it. Those are changes worth making.

Trigger / Response Log:

Remembering the intensity of yesterday’s horniness -> not identifying with the feeling and recognizing it is in the past
Experiencing a setback in something I was doing -> stopping my work on it for the day
Dealing with a task I have been avoiding for a while -> taking my time with it and stopping when it felt too overwhelming
Obsessing over checking the forums -> getting away from the computer

Urges:
Memories of yesterday replicated a weaker version of what I experienced, but it wasn’t all that frequent.

Emotions:
Anxiety in the background all day.

Cognition:

Ok. Still dull. But a little less so than usual.

Pain:
Aching present throughout the day. Guess this category wanted to join its brethren.

* Something positive / something I did well:

- Dealt with some paperwork and emails I have been avoiding for a while

NewStart04

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #115 on: November 10, 2019, 01:52:51 AM »
Attention all board members and guests reading this topic!

I've got some significant changes in store and want to devote more time to them, so I am going to be taking another indefinite break from the forum. I think it'll be a nice change of pace to think less about my streak, my journal, and just porn in general.

I still want to share the effects of my PMO-free lifestyle with all of you, so I'll be back sometime in the future. Probably sometime around five weeks from now. I'm excited to discover what experiences I'll be able to share with you all!

Take care and best of luck

CB

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #116 on: November 10, 2019, 04:29:13 PM »
Keep it going! You’re doing great! I hope you make it through, when you do I’m promising you it will get easier. It’s still difficult most days a week on day 144 for me but it is way easier to not slip than the beginning. I know you can do it!

NewStart04

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #117 on: June 05, 2020, 10:26:08 PM »
CB

Long time no talk. Thank you so much for the kind words. At times, it is support like this that really makes all the difference.

Wishing you all the best and I hope that things have been more on the up since your last post on the 24th.

Take care
« Last Edit: June 06, 2020, 02:06:24 PM by NewStart04 »

NewStart04

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #118 on: June 05, 2020, 10:27:31 PM »
Wow! It's been quite a while since I've posted here. More than 6 months!

Well, I don't have too much to write at the moment. For those of you that are interested, I am still walking the path of recovery (although I suppose it is arguable if that ever really ends), but in general I am doing better than I was in the past, which is something I feel quite proud of.

The main reason why I am posting here today however is to recommend a somewhat new edition to my library that I think is a worthwhile purchase for anyone struggling with porn or sex addiction (or any other addiction to be honest).

The title is Gifts of Recovery: Daily Meditations for Men and Women in Recovery from Sex Addiction. It is a little reader that--aside from a short introduction at the beginning and an acknowledgements section, index, and about-the-author blurb at the back--consists entirely of daily meditations for the whole year (by this I mean reflections that are meant to guide others in contemplation) and questions that provide, in the words of the author, "...guidance, information, clinical insight, and recovery wisdom." And I really think they do.

Now all of these insights may not be for you, but based on what I have read and applied so far, I can't help but feel the need to at least mention this book in my post. In the spirit of potentially triggering users' interest in adding this book to their recovery toolkit, I am including a few excerpts below to give you all an idea of what the format is like.


June 1


Just because it is OK for others does not mean it is OK for you.
-Therapy Lesson


Everyone is different. What we need for balance and sobriety may
be different than what someone else needs. This is true for us when
we compare our sobriety and recovery boundaries to other addicts.
This is especially true when we, as addicts, compare ourselves to
someone who is not an addict. What may be normal, acceptable,
and even healthy for a non-addict, can be a death knell for someone
with an addiction. More than one of us has found ourselves in relapse
and saying "They let themselves do this behavior and I thought that
sounded like a good idea for me." We must each take responsibility for
realizing and respecting our own boundaries.

Am I finding effective boundaries for myself or am I copying the
boundaries of others? What can others do that simply does not work
for me? What gifts await me as I choose my boundaries based on what
I need and not what others do?


-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

May 17

"A ship in the harbor is safe, but that is not what ships are built for."
-John A. Shedd


The same old same old is the safest bet but it does not get you anywhere.
An addict's life can be chaotic not only because of their addictive behaviors
but also because of the choices they continue to make and the patterns they
continue to follow. Change requires leaving the known and venturing into
the unknown. Only then can we find a life of recovery.

When have I fallen back into my same old patterns? What has been the
outcome of these patterns? What gifts await me as I venture out of the
known and into recovery?


-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

February 7


The universe does not say "You've got it!" very often. It does say "You're
getting warmer" and "You're getting colder" quite a bit.
-Therapy Lesson

The moments when we receive the message "You've got it!" are few and far
between. If we base our recovery choices only on these definitive moments,
we will be wandering lost most of the time. However, when we slow down
and pay attention, we notice there are many subtle nudges and hints to guide
us. Recognizing an addictive thought or feeling an addictive urge following a
gray area behavior, especially one that we want to justify as OK, might be the
universe telling us "You're getting colder." A friend commenting on how much
they have enjoyed our company when we have been feeling awkward due to
new recovery boundaries might be the universe telling us "You're getting
warmer." These moments of "You're getting warmer" and "You're getting
colder" provide us with a map to more effectively navigate our lives in recovery.

When have I felt like I did not have the answers to my addiction? When have
I been nudged with smaller and more subtle hints? What gifts await me as I
look for the nudges and hints to guide me in my life of recovery?



And with that out of the way, I'd like to wish everyone reading this post another great, PMO-free day. I hope that you all continue to persevere and keep whatever hope you currently hold, big or small, burning within. I know I'll be doing the same.

Take care

NewStart04

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #119 on: June 16, 2020, 09:16:21 PM »
Hey there fellow rebooters,

Back on November 10, 2019, I mentioned that I was going to take a break from the forum, falsely predicting that I would return about five weeks later. I couldn't have been more wrong. It was more like three months.

At that time, I made a few posts in a handful of journals, only to disappear again for another four months.

I distanced myself from Reboot Nation because I noticed that I was overly obsessing about it, repeatedly checking my topic and those of others. In addition, visiting the forum made me think more about porn and my addiction, which seemed to me to be a bad idea since my thoughts and feelings were already dominated by the two every day. In some ways, I felt like I was adding fuel to the fire.

This doesn't mean that all the time I spent on the forum was detrimental, but it did mean that I needed to take a break until I felt ready to return.

In my November 20 post I mentioned that I had some significant changes in store and that I wanted to devote more time to them. Looking back on the time between then and now, I can say that in some ways I have made significant changes in my life, while in others I haven't. If I imagine that during this period I were to be watched from a third-person perspective (imagine something like The Truman Show), I think the latter would appear truer than the former. This is something that I notice I beat myself up about, more often than I would like. But the fact of the matter is that when I objectively look at the change I have enacted, I see that I've made improvements at a very fundamental, but important, level. And I don't want to lose sight of these victories, as basic as they are.

So I have decided to try and increase my presence on the forum, or at the very least in this topic. I hope that this--in addition to other tools that I use, like my daily records and logs--will serve as a concrete reminder that I have changed and will continue to change for the better, regardless of whatever dark chasm my thoughts and emotions beckon me toward in the present.

What better way to start than to give a concise summary of what has changed for me on the PMO front? Put simply, when I do relapse, I look at porn and its substitutes far less often than before. What's more, I have been able to radically reduce the duration of my sessions, regardless of whether its fantasy or pornography. The result? Recovery has become noticeably easier. Not easy, but easier. And this is so important. I was focused so much on quitting as a whole, to find that 'right' combination of precautions, recovery techniques, behaviors and purpose that would lead me through recovery, that I neglected to invest adequate time, effort and consistency in reducing the problem at its source. To reduce the amount of dopamine that my addiction was being fed so that I could loosen the grip it had on me.

I hope that this isn't misconstrued as me saying that those other components don't matter, because they most certainly do. But at that stage of my journey--which had transformed from a sojourn into a prolonged residence--I had continually overlooked what I had spent time learning when I made the transition from viewing my porn use as a detrimental habit/behavior to seeing it for what it is (an addiction) almost five years ago.

Now for those who are reading, please remember that I am not saying that this is the most important realization to have at your current stage of the recovery journey. Maybe you need to take more consistent precautions. Or maybe you need to look into other techniques to help better cope with recovery. I'm just sharing the above because it was an important change that I had been overlooking for quite some time.

I hope you all have a great, PMO-free day. And if you don't, there's always tomorrow.

Take care
« Last Edit: June 16, 2020, 09:19:34 PM by NewStart04 »

Icandoit

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #120 on: June 17, 2020, 01:13:21 PM »
Good thing being back here. I understand what you mean that constantly being on a porn addiction forum can make one remember he is an addict. Sometimes we want to forget and focus on our day. But I also believe it's necessary to come constantly to the "meetings" (like AA, Reboot Nation is our place), your frequency depends on you, it depends on you how often you want to come here, I sometimes come daily, sometimes I take several days break. But I need to be here for support, advice and sharing my situation with people who understand what I mean. It's very important, because I haven't been able to open up about my problem to people around me cause they are not porn addicts.

I've seen that you've managed to reduce the porn use. Whatever works for you, do it. It doesn't work for me. I can't reduce, I've tried many times, only hardcore cold turkey works for me, it's brutal but it is what it is. I want to make it to 1 week tomorrow, I don't know how long is your streak but make it to the next level too.

NewStart04

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #121 on: June 17, 2020, 10:14:04 PM »
Icandoit

Thanks for stopping by and posting. I appreciate you taking the time to read what I wrote.

I’m actually one of those people who takes the saying ‘once an addict, always an addict’ to heart. It’s important for me not to forget this because it reminds me of my reality and helps me to make better choices consistent with that reality. What I meant in my previous post is that at that time, due to a combination of how I was using the forums and where I was at that point in my life, I was thinking so much about pornography, my addiction, and recovery, that it was detrimental to making progress. It’s not like all the time spent here and on YBR was problematic, but some of it was. That’s why I needed some time away from the forums. Hopefully that makes sense.

I hear you about the slippery slope of reducing. Had I tried doing doing so during much of my many years struggling with recovery, I think I would have found myself in a position similar to the one you are in. But I had reached a point in my journey where doing so actually started yielding noticeable improvements in urges, withdrawals, self-confidence and self-control.

Don’t get me wrong. I still look at every moment after a relapse as ‘the last time’ so to speak. And I always will, because that is the only way an addict of my severity will ever truly recover. This ultimately means no more porn, no more masturbation, no intentional sexual/romantic fantasy, no intentional arousal searches on the web, and no intentional ogling of women (or as close to zero as humanly possible for the last three). But doing my utmost to pull back the reins on a relapse when it does happen, as well as gathering data and monitoring my changes, has lead to some significant improvements that are making this process comparatively easier than before.

Something I’ve learned from my experience of struggling through recovery is that different combinations are going to work better for different people at different stages. I definitely am not saying that what I’m doing is the right choice for you now or ever. It’s up to each and every one of us to consistently experiment on ourselves and observe the results over time. From that, we can better construct an approach that gets us closer and closer to the life we want to live.

I hope you have a great, PMO-free day.

Take care
« Last Edit: June 17, 2020, 10:15:55 PM by NewStart04 »

NewStart04

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #122 on: June 17, 2020, 10:16:31 PM »
Experienced some pain in the middle of the night and slept somewhat poorly. Nothing I can do about that, but being sleep-deprived is one of the most consistent causes of relapse for me. Unsurprisingly, I had some persistent urges today but made it through them all. Best thing I can do for the remainder of the day is go to bed soon and turn off my IADs starting now.

Good night to all those reading, or perhaps good morning or afternoon depending on where you're located.

Take care

Icandoit

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #123 on: June 18, 2020, 04:15:48 AM »
Experienced some pain in the middle of the night and slept somewhat poorly. Nothing I can do about that, but being sleep-deprived is one of the most consistent causes of relapse for me. Unsurprisingly, I had some persistent urges today but made it through them all. Best thing I can do for the remainder of the day is go to bed soon and turn off my IADs starting now.

Good night to all those reading, or perhaps good morning or afternoon depending on where you're located.

Take care

Being tired is a risk for relapsing for me too. Sometimes I've relapsed being awake at night, not being able to sleep. But the idea is, things will happen, triggers will show up, this is not an excuse for us to relapse, we need to find a way to deal with them.

NewStart04

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Re: A Better Tomorrow
« Reply #124 on: June 18, 2020, 10:02:08 PM »
Icandoit

Exactly. We can’t control everything in our lives. What we can do is change elements of our environment and behavior as well as come up with new ways to respond when confronted with urges and withdrawals.
« Last Edit: June 18, 2020, 10:04:17 PM by NewStart04 »