Author Topic: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot  (Read 2865 times)

blueicetea10

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My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« on: April 14, 2020, 11:30:20 AM »
Hello! I am starting a journal in this thread. I am new to the forum and I'm excited to keep a public but anonymous account of my journey on the path to success. I hope that keeping this journal will be a resource for my recovery, somewhere I can record and learn from the challenges I face and discuss what I am going through with others.

To give some context on where I am at from where I came from first let's have a blast from the past:

**ALERT Many Possible Triggers Including In Depth Description Of My Historic Consumption Habits**
I have watched and masturbated to pornography since I was 12. I accidentally stumbled onto it when it was left open on my brother's computer. My consumption has varied between frequent (daily) to infrequent (weekly) and at a time my relationship with it was 'normal'. However, since the age of 16 I have participated in forums such as nofap for a few reasons. My use at times became disturbingly frequent and interrupted my natural libido. I found myself masturbating the day before a date with my girlfriend and then not being particularly aroused during real sex and experienced reduced sensitivity. I found also that my tastes in porn grew more and more extreme until I would finish a session feeling ashamed. I recognise in myself a tendency to use porn in ways that do not bring positivity into my life, and so many times I have tried to return to "normal" or "healthy" use (a couple times a week and only soft core). All of these attempts failed and I realise that porn to me is like a toxic, addictive drug. It is not something I can consume healthily due to the physical changes in my brain's reward network which crave more of it and in more extreme forms. Then comes the second major phase in my journey so far. I began visiting niche forums with content that I thought at first was silly, strange, even funny at times. I was looking at captioned wincest and cuckold material with far fetched captions that in the beginning I felt was a strange world that I would bravely touch a toe into, if for nothing other than curiosity. Then I experienced something particularly strange. Upon engaging with the material, particularly degrading cuckold themed captioned material, my heart started racing and adrenaline starting pumping. I PMO'd through the experience and felt shocked and disgusted, however the feeling itself was so visceral that it eclipsed anything i had experienced while watching even hardcore mainstream pornography. From that day around two years ago consumption of that sort of material has been quite regular. Now my brain fires up its arousal modules in the presence of adrenaline and anxiety. I see this as a malfunction of the brain and sign that my issue with pornography is related to my insecurities.
** Trigger warning end**

So that's where I am at now. A few landmark changes happened in the past few days and it is no coincidence that I am posting on here now.
  • I had a conversation with myself ("face to face" sort of thing) where I got to the bottom of what is going on and made the resolution that I am stepping onto the path of recovery. This is a step that must be taken and it is not enough to simply think about stepping onto the path. It is important to make that step. I made the uncomfortable statement that enough is enough. Somehow I manage to convince myself that just one last time won't hurt. I have had one last time for the last 2 years... I have made that step and I am now on the road that will take me to recovery. It won't be easy and I wouldn't be surprised to see a few ups and downs along the way, but I see myself now as someone recovered from addiction and am describing what happens next as a tale of success.
  • Yesterday I engaged with the typical kind of material again. After the session I realised just how silly it was. There is a disconnect between the material I was consuming and my real sexuality. So I decided to do something stupid... I began retracing my footsteps of how I got from sexual thought to relapse and analysed the material I looked at. I used my skills as a mindfulness practitioner to notice the way my heart pounded unnaturally as I navigated the content. I noticed a few things but mostly that the material I am engaging with is silly, ridiculous, not even hot when you analyse what is actually on screen, and something to laugh at. I know that this goes against the common advice, and I do not recommend dipping your toes into the shark invested water as I did. However, it allowed me to open up a new and exciting phase of my recover: positivity. I love myself, I love my life and I wish happiness for myself. I see these videos as silly and something to laugh at. I will no longer fight off sexual thoughts and feelings and fight a battle with my addiction, instead I will gently welcome those thoughts, recognise them and let them go.

My decision to join this forum was for two reasons:

  • Because I recognise the importance of learning from those who have already succeeded. There's a reason we don't spend our time at preschool trying to figure out which combination of colours makes light orange and our time in maths trying to find all the prime numbers by trial and error. It's that the oldest way of learning is by doing: engaging with the practice and adapting your approach by trial and error. However, the second oldest is to apprentice yourself under someone who has already mastered the task. Absorb their knowledge and adapt their strategies to suit you; this method is rapid and reliable and will accelerate your progress. This is the missing ingredient I believe I have been lacking while I walked this path alone in years prior.
  • Because I believe that recording my thoughts and gathering them will be damn good therapy. This is something frowned upon that I feel I have to keep quite about in my life on the surface. It is comforting to have somewhere to go that I can discuss this with others going through a similar thing.

Thank you for reading my strange ramble, I hope it was interesting and I'm excited to share the rest of my success story.
« Last Edit: April 17, 2020, 04:45:17 AM by blueicetea10 »
Mastery is not an exalted state that lies at the end of the path; it is a state of mind the lies at the very beginning.
Mastery is in the act of setting foot on the path, not in reaching its end.

blueicetea10

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #1 on: April 17, 2020, 05:05:44 AM »
Today I woke up with a sexual charge in my body, as though I though I was a tightly drawn bow string ready to fire off at a slip of a finger. I was instantly aware that I was in a vulnerable state with regards to losing self control and engaging with some material. A quick visit to Instagram exposed me to a story shared of a model, I began to scroll through their profile. I exited within minutes, mindful of the subtle drug rush in my brain. A while later I had googled something about the cast of friends and then clicked on Jenifer Anniston’s photograph. As google likes to do it brought up a hundred photos of season 1-2 Jen. I could feel a stronger rush and the thought crossed my mind “ahhh one last time wouldn’t hurt” blended with “there’s nothing insidious about soft core photos”.

I put my phone down and became aware of the feeling of pumping blood and arousal, I let it wash over me, I tried to welcome it like an old friend, then I let it go. Then I came straight here. I know that soft core porn is like a small dose of this addictive substance. Just like it has in the past it would lead somewhere else. I would find myself on forums then porn sites then hardcore porn and the feeling after PMOing what leave me feeling so disappointed in myself for giving in. 

I am proud of myself for overcoming this first challenge. I recognise that there will be much bigger fish but I know too, that I will grow to match the size of the problem. I have also started messaging an accountability partner, i know that we’ll help each other out.

Today might well present more challenges, but I’m ready for them!
« Last Edit: April 17, 2020, 05:08:02 AM by blueicetea10 »
Mastery is not an exalted state that lies at the end of the path; it is a state of mind the lies at the very beginning.
Mastery is in the act of setting foot on the path, not in reaching its end.

blueicetea10

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #2 on: April 22, 2020, 10:09:14 AM »
It’s a beautiful day.

I have decided not to visit this forum two days in a row, as I don’t want to become dependant. I will make exceptions if I’m in need of support, but as far as my journal updates go they will become less frequent as time passes. This is because I don’t want to become obsessive over this like it’s some short term hobby. I’m in this for the long term, so I do not want to burn out my interest or enthusiasm. Fortunately I recognise my positive relationship with porn, sex and self control has fast become a self replenishing habit.

I have had a couple of close calls, both on Instagram. Rushes of adrenaline, the idea that it will feel super nice crosses my mind. I notice these thoughts, welcome them in like old friends and let them go.

Any dosage of porn use will destabilise me and set me right back. That is a big reason not to dip my toes in.

Sex has been much better and more frequent which is a bonus. I also feel charged with testosterone, have more energy and have been working out a lot. I anticipate a plateau as my body adapts to its new stimulus in the next couple weeks.

Sending out good wishes to everyone else on this beautiful path. ☺️
« Last Edit: April 24, 2020, 03:06:48 AM by blueicetea10 »
Mastery is not an exalted state that lies at the end of the path; it is a state of mind the lies at the very beginning.
Mastery is in the act of setting foot on the path, not in reaching its end.

blueicetea10

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #3 on: April 24, 2020, 03:19:58 AM »
Yesterday was pretty tough. I had a strong sexual charge the whole day like my heart wanted to spring out of chest. My theory is that this is signs of withdrawal, or my hormones being jacked up from changing my sexual habits, or both. Anyway I was struggling with sexual thoughts all day but steered away from any kind of screen based stimulation. Problems came more in the evening when it was hot as hell and I was struggling to sleep. I tossed and turned in bed for some time before I fell into some sexual fantasising. I don't recognise this as strictly malicious, as my focus is much more strongly on a total elimination of porn than of MO. However, at this early time I am still trying to do a full reboot. Anyway I felt like I couldn't sleep, and the sexual charge in my heart was disturbing. So I MO'd. My feeling afterwards was of course: "that was fucking stupid." During the affair I relied on a lot of visualisation and I felt like it was coming from a similar place as the part that porn itches. Partly I feel frustrated but partly I feel proud that I so strongly steered away from use or fantasising about hardcore or fetish material, which is pretty fantastic.

Takeaways:
  • If I can't sleep then I can't sleep. I'll have to accept that in the first couple of weeks of recovery my body will be in flux. I have plenty of good books to overcome this.
  • Be more aware of sexual charge and setup my environment before bed to be optimally conducive to an easy ride. I could talk to my gf when I'm feeling that way for more support, or visit this forum.

I need to be ready for an aftershock in the next few days. My past experience is that one setback can trigger multiple so I'll visit here quite regularly in the next week.
Mastery is not an exalted state that lies at the end of the path; it is a state of mind the lies at the very beginning.
Mastery is in the act of setting foot on the path, not in reaching its end.

blueicetea10

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #4 on: May 03, 2020, 07:17:49 AM »
I had a moment of weakness last week while I was studying. I kept having urges and distractions. I eventually conceded to the urges and masturbated to pretty vanilla porn. I did this twice more in the last week and again this morning. My use this morning was to slightly more intense material and that's what woke me up and brought me back here.

My thoughts and reflections are as follows.

  • Urges are real. They are hard to imagine when you are not experiencing them, but when you do you can see the world in a different way. The rational part of yourself is muted slightly and drowned out by the more impulsive hungry self, seeking instant gratification. I know that I have the power to recognise these feelings and to let them blow in one ear and out the other gently. However, this requires a degree of purpose. I must have the firm decision in my mind that I am not using the material. My reasons for not using porn are as clear as day while I'm here writing this, but in moments of extreme urges I find it hard to remember these reasons clearly. I start to reason that "if it's just vanilla material then it's not bad." This is perhaps at the heart of the issue for me: the illusion that the thrill is in the consumption and not in the searching, in the grasping and not in the reaching. The thrill is entirely in the searching, and all you will find there is a rush of opioids, a dulling of the senses, and a niggling thirst for more.
  • This forum is super important for me to remember why I'm here, what I'm doing and to respect the journey. I find interacting with others on here a very positive thing for me and the success stories forum is full of inspiration. I will see this forum as the height of productivity, and never shame myself for browsing it in moments of weakness, because so far it has been a beacon of knowledge and support. I think it was naive of me to talk about distancing myself from the forum at such an early stage, and for the next ~6 months I predict I will be quite active. But perhaps the naivety is in trying to predict the future...

I wish everyone on here the best and good luck in their journey. The database feeding this forum is full of many, many accounts of people over the years who have sought out support for their porn addiction. Of the accounts no longer active, one can only wonder if those people continued on their journey elsewhere or are still battling or suffering in solitude. That is a reminder that no matter our situation, the fact that you are reading this post right now means you have come to seek out a better tomorrow, and that is a beautiful, beautiful thing.
Mastery is not an exalted state that lies at the end of the path; it is a state of mind the lies at the very beginning.
Mastery is in the act of setting foot on the path, not in reaching its end.

blueicetea10

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #5 on: May 05, 2020, 05:19:23 AM »
I'm feeling pretty good today and coming on here as been a nice reminder of what I'm doing and why I'm doing it. I feel like I can usually tell as soon as I wake up if I'm gonna have a load of urges that day. Just need to get used to not acting on them + be aware that in the first two weeks the urges are crazy, then they'll die down again.


Just read an awesome post in success stories and it showed how it really is blood, sweat and tears up to a certain point. I need to tough through the initial couple weeks that's for sure. Last time I made it to two weeks I started getting crazy urges but they only last a few minutes if you distract yourself etc.

Best wishes if you are reading this. Life is a wonderful adventure, its ups and downs are part of its strange and beautiful tapestry.

 :D
Mastery is not an exalted state that lies at the end of the path; it is a state of mind the lies at the very beginning.
Mastery is in the act of setting foot on the path, not in reaching its end.

blueicetea10

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #6 on: May 06, 2020, 05:55:54 AM »
Another day another entry! I felt the urge as I opened my laptop to visit Instagram with the intention of looking at sexual imagery. It's weird because Instagram has this deep connection to me with porn and voyeuristic behaviour. When I was a kid I used to use Instagram to stalk girls I had crushes on and masturbate to their photographs. At some points it became pretty obsessive and ritualistic, to the point where I would see the girls in real life and have no strong sexual attraction to them, but I built a deep arousal connected to their photographs. Looking back on it I think this eroded what was once a much stronger sense of right and wrong in terms of undesired sexual attention. I spent some years during my late teens making inappropriate eye contact with females in all kinds of settings and making obvious glances in an inappropriate fashion. I once went as far as taking a bikini shot of a girl I had a crush on and removed her bikini through photo manipulation and replaced them with another persons breasts. This was all at the height of my porn use and in parallel with a diminished sense of self worth due to some complications with my genitalia which have since been resolved.

Seeing photographs now of women, friends and acquaintances, on my Instagram feed can bring some of these feelings back. There is a sort of rush at the idea of opening Instagram and it isn't because I'm excited to see what my friends are up to. I don't know exactly what to do about this. I do care about my friends, past and present, and enjoy being somewhat up to date on what they are doing. However, I also find some of their photos to be stimulus for that part of my brain that craves pornography. Many of my friend are beautiful women and I need to be armed with the sense of self direction to admire their beauty without acting in a creepy way, both in real life and on the strange virtual world I am so often submerged in. Perhaps for now I will focus on noticing that feeling and doing my urge pushups as I do with porn. I should also keep use of it to a minimum.

Best wishes everyone on here !  ;D
Mastery is not an exalted state that lies at the end of the path; it is a state of mind the lies at the very beginning.
Mastery is in the act of setting foot on the path, not in reaching its end.

smitdum

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #7 on: May 06, 2020, 07:56:27 AM »
I had very similar story. Instagram was a huge trigger for me. Here's what I did, I blocked all the pretty girls I knew and guess what i lost  interest in Instagram. Before i did this, i used to check my phone everytime i got a notificaton from instagram to check for new posts and stories from those chicks but now I dont as I know that its just my guy friends who are posting.

blueicetea10

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #8 on: May 10, 2020, 11:19:10 AM »
I have done as you said and found exactly the same in the past few days since that last post! If a thought arises that I should visit Instagram, I try and inspect it. If the thought is arising with the intention of seeing girls then I don't visit it. So far I haven't been on it once which says something.

I just masturbated to porn. That still seems like a funny thing to exclaim "out loud" but it also feels good to be open about it this time.

What happened was as follows: I started singing a pitbull song that's pretty catchy. Had a slight urge to watch it. Saw girls in the thumbnail. Literally said "yikes" to myself. Here is when I should have done the pushup. If not earlier actually. I went into the comments, someone mentioned wondering what they looked like now. I googled their instagrams, then went to lookup vintage & 2000s porn on reddit. Then I went on pornhub, saw I had a pornblocker enabled. Then the doorbell rang, I dropped everything. This was a good chance to snap out of it. I literally said to myself "eh vanilla porn isn't so bad." Disabled the porn blocker, looked at some vanilla porn, searched for vintage porn, clicked on the top result and masturbated to that. Now that I do that, it's actually quite an interesting exercise to go back and retrace my footsteps.

First up let's look at what happened:
  • I got urges to look at porn.
  • I dipped my toes into the shark invested water by looking at something containing mild nudity / sexual themes.
  • I convinced myself that looking at vanilla porn would not be so bad.
  • I looked at and masturbated to porn.

I see the key steps for control as in 1 and 3. In step 1 & 2 I can use mindfulness techniques to see sensations arise, notice them, gently let them fly away, and then go and do my push up. However, I have been having a strange sensation a couple days in where I doubt just how important this quitting porn business really is. This undercuts any mindful control in step 1 because I have no intention to quit, which is really the most important thing.

Now to where I am ... now. I still care about quitting porn. Even though my consumption this time was pretty vanilla, the slope is damn slippery. I therefore want to help to reaffirm my reasons for quitting more regularly. I am gonna make a list of reasons on my phone behind a passcoded notes app. I will look at and update that every morning.

Some reasons to start me off:

  • Porn is addictive to me. My use of it in any fashion will push me back into an escalating cycle of use.
  • My energy is better without it.
  • Real sex is better without it.
... (thinking of more)...

Best wishes everyone!  :)
Mastery is not an exalted state that lies at the end of the path; it is a state of mind the lies at the very beginning.
Mastery is in the act of setting foot on the path, not in reaching its end.

smitdum

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #9 on: May 10, 2020, 10:52:33 PM »
Thats exactly what happens. Its a chain of events where one thing leads to another and before you know it, you realize you have relapsed. The ability to resist oneself in the first few steps is the easiest and then is gets more difficult with every step. Mindfulness and willpower is the key.
Remind yourself everyday why did you start in the first place.

Try meditating and saying the following affirmations EVERY MORNING:(People have used this technique to cure cancer):
I am able to resist viewing p*rn.
My life is great without p*rn.
I am stronger than any addiction.
I am in control of my impulses.
My willpower is strong and unwavering.
I easily resist the temptation to view p*rn.

Be aware of your body and its chemistry. ONLY YOU can control it. I am no expert in this field, but just trying to help myself and others.
Good luck! and keep posting

Chris Oz

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #10 on: May 11, 2020, 01:31:38 AM »
Hey Alex, nice one. I like the improvement in attitude  towards this thing. Keep. Pushing.
Also, try to put in your recovery day number so we'd know what day you are... And track your progress too.

blueicetea10

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #11 on: May 14, 2020, 08:50:27 AM »
Thanks for the thoughts! I appreciate those affirmations smitdum I I have been doing something quite similar via my reasons for quitting list on a passcode locked app on my phone.

Also thanks Chris I'm im this for the long term. With regards to a tracker I'm not tracking my progress numerically at all as in the past I have found this to be counter productive to me personally. I see myself as someone who has already successfully recovered from this addiction still trying to find my feet, so as far I'm concerned my counter's on as many days as I've got left on the planet. I do however appreciate that others enjoy the use of counters and find them helpful, so thanks for the advice. The forum posts I have been doing also allow some level of tracking and recounting previous behaviour.

I have just MO'd with no porn. Otherwise I have been pretty successful just following two simple practices:
  • Affirming my reasons for quitting in the morning. I'm not gonna get obsessive over this, but I have just added into my routine 30 seconds to remind my self and test myself to recall reasons my I'm quitting. If I think of a new one I'll also add it. The list is already getting pretty long with a phrase I got from Gabe "If it isn't real, no deal." This helps the rational part of my brain keep the impulsive part in check.
  • Doing a pushup when I am aware of artificial sexual stimulus. Distracts the impulsive part of my brain and lets the rational part take control. Also nice to move my body and snap away from the computer. If the urges are too intense I'll go for a walk.

Regarding my recent MO with no porn, I did rely on visualisation and rather intense stimulation much more than I would like. Therefore or I am setting the intention to treat all visualisation as artificial sexual stim. and will avoid that like porn. I will review this in the coming weeks and see if it's a good long term idea.

It's also been nice keeping up with my reboot buddies on here, and I'm feeling pretty positive about the whole process. It's not on my mind much and when it is I have to tools to deal with it.
Mastery is not an exalted state that lies at the end of the path; it is a state of mind the lies at the very beginning.
Mastery is in the act of setting foot on the path, not in reaching its end.

quitforeverthenwin2

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #12 on: May 16, 2020, 07:28:54 AM »
Sounds like all very good ideas. Keep up the good work! Reviewing the reasons sounds great. I like that phrase "isn't real no deal!" easy to remember and a great true guide!

blueicetea10

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #13 on: May 16, 2020, 11:59:59 AM »
Thank you ! Yes I've been saying that phrase every now and then the past couple days. It's a funny way to remind myself that fantasies for example still count.

Feeling pretty positive about this all. Enjoying life, and I'm enjoying this forum and the journey. Super nice to log on and see my buddies have messaged me and work on our stuff together.

Biggest things recently:
  • Affirming the reasons why I'm quitting. (Recounting and testing myself of them).
  • Doing a pushup if I have urges.
  • Visiting this forum for support and fresh inspiration.


If you're looking for a casual accountability partner type thing please do give me a message. I'm not on daily but I'm happy to chat and support each other.

Best wishes all
Mastery is not an exalted state that lies at the end of the path; it is a state of mind the lies at the very beginning.
Mastery is in the act of setting foot on the path, not in reaching its end.

blueicetea10

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #14 on: May 18, 2020, 11:28:07 AM »
I just PMO'd and am trying to process how I feel about it. I believe my mistake was hanging out around a computer after I felt two urges on a short space of time. Next time that happens I'll go straight to a public or shared place to work or go for a walk.

During the relapse I didn't actually really enjoy myself. It felt kind of uncomfortable and I got an adrenaline release of sorts that made the whole thing less than relaxing. My feelings afterwards are: I can see why people do that. If you can consume "a glass of wine now and then" and only wine and only one glass type of behaviour then it's an exciting way to explore your sexuality and get a rush from your bedroom. However. (Big however). I also do not believe for one second that I can maintain a healthy level of use and even if I could I don't want to. I hate that my mind is plugged into the system and being pumped with content that's dark and toxic. And in that period of use I felt my old feelings of shame lurking in the shadows.

I'm still positive and I want to be better and that's an incredible thing to want. However I can't lie in that I do feel tired and frustrated. How am I really going to push past the next urge? God dang I'm getting urges while I'm writing this and even thoughts of bingeing. Therefore I'm gonna go sit and work in a shared space where I don't need to rely on self control to get through this.

I'll be back, stronger.

Best wishes all  :)
Mastery is not an exalted state that lies at the end of the path; it is a state of mind the lies at the very beginning.
Mastery is in the act of setting foot on the path, not in reaching its end.

blueicetea10

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #15 on: May 18, 2020, 11:34:29 AM »
Hello! I am starting a journal in this thread. I am new to the forum and I'm excited to keep a public but anonymous account of my journey on the path to success. I hope that keeping this journal will be a resource for my recovery, somewhere I can record and learn from the challenges I face and discuss what I am going through with others.

To give some context on where I am at from where I came from first let's have a blast from the past:

**ALERT Many Possible Triggers Including In Depth Description Of My Historic Consumption Habits**
I have watched and masturbated to pornography since I was 12. I accidentally stumbled onto it when it was left open on my brother's computer. My consumption has varied between frequent (daily) to infrequent (weekly) and at a time my relationship with it was 'normal'. However, since the age of 16 I have participated in forums such as nofap for a few reasons. My use at times became disturbingly frequent and interrupted my natural libido. I found myself masturbating the day before a date with my girlfriend and then not being particularly aroused during real sex and experienced reduced sensitivity. I found also that my tastes in porn grew more and more extreme until I would finish a session feeling ashamed. I recognise in myself a tendency to use porn in ways that do not bring positivity into my life, and so many times I have tried to return to "normal" or "healthy" use (a couple times a week and only soft core). All of these attempts failed and I realise that porn to me is like a toxic, addictive drug. It is not something I can consume healthily due to the physical changes in my brain's reward network which crave more of it and in more extreme forms. Then comes the second major phase in my journey so far. I began visiting niche forums with content that I thought at first was silly, strange, even funny at times. I was looking at captioned wincest and cuckold material with far fetched captions that in the beginning I felt was a strange world that I would bravely touch a toe into, if for nothing other than curiosity. Then I experienced something particularly strange. Upon engaging with the material, particularly degrading cuckold themed captioned material, my heart started racing and adrenaline starting pumping. I PMO'd through the experience and felt shocked and disgusted, however the feeling itself was so visceral that it eclipsed anything i had experienced while watching even hardcore mainstream pornography. From that day around two years ago consumption of that sort of material has been quite regular. Now my brain fires up its arousal modules in the presence of adrenaline and anxiety. I see this as a malfunction of the brain and sign that my issue with pornography is related to my insecurities.
** Trigger warning end**

So that's where I am at now. A few landmark changes happened in the past few days and it is no coincidence that I am posting on here now.
  • I had a conversation with myself ("face to face" sort of thing) where I got to the bottom of what is going on and made the resolution that I am stepping onto the path of recovery. This is a step that must be taken and it is not enough to simply think about stepping onto the path. It is important to make that step. I made the uncomfortable statement that enough is enough. Somehow I manage to convince myself that just one last time won't hurt. I have had one last time for the last 2 years... I have made that step and I am now on the road that will take me to recovery. It won't be easy and I wouldn't be surprised to see a few ups and downs along the way, but I see myself now as someone recovered from addiction and am describing what happens next as a tale of success.
  • Yesterday I engaged with the typical kind of material again. After the session I realised just how silly it was. There is a disconnect between the material I was consuming and my real sexuality. So I decided to do something stupid... I began retracing my footsteps of how I got from sexual thought to relapse and analysed the material I looked at. I used my skills as a mindfulness practitioner to notice the way my heart pounded unnaturally as I navigated the content. I noticed a few things but mostly that the material I am engaging with is silly, ridiculous, not even hot when you analyse what is actually on screen, and something to laugh at. I know that this goes against the common advice, and I do not recommend dipping your toes into the shark invested water as I did. However, it allowed me to open up a new and exciting phase of my recover: positivity. I love myself, I love my life and I wish happiness for myself. I see these videos as silly and something to laugh at. I will no longer fight off sexual thoughts and feelings and fight a battle with my addiction, instead I will gently welcome those thoughts, recognise them and let them go.

My decision to join this forum was for two reasons:

  • Because I recognise the importance of learning from those who have already succeeded. There's a reason we don't spend our time at preschool trying to figure out which combination of colours makes light orange and our time in maths trying to find all the prime numbers by trial and error. It's that the oldest way of learning is by doing: engaging with the practice and adapting your approach by trial and error. However, the second oldest is to apprentice yourself under someone who has already mastered the task. Absorb their knowledge and adapt their strategies to suit you; this method is rapid and reliable and will accelerate your progress. This is the missing ingredient I believe I have been lacking while I walked this path alone in years prior.
  • Because I believe that recording my thoughts and gathering them will be damn good therapy. This is something frowned upon that I feel I have to keep quite about in my life on the surface. It is comforting to have somewhere to go that I can discuss this with others going through a similar thing.

Thank you for reading my strange ramble, I hope it was interesting and I'm excited to share the rest of my success story.

I've just reread this because I need something to inspire myself. This is as true today as it was when I wrote this. I am in one of those downs I predicted. And I've just had the thought that it's in the moments like these that keeping on going is so difficult, and you seem to be so far from where you want to be, but just believe in the process and keep on going.
Mastery is not an exalted state that lies at the end of the path; it is a state of mind the lies at the very beginning.
Mastery is in the act of setting foot on the path, not in reaching its end.

blueicetea10

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #16 on: May 18, 2020, 11:42:27 AM »
Ok that was all a bit serious this gave me a good laugh

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gFqyb1opGR4
Mastery is not an exalted state that lies at the end of the path; it is a state of mind the lies at the very beginning.
Mastery is in the act of setting foot on the path, not in reaching its end.

blueicetea10

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #17 on: May 21, 2020, 02:14:19 PM »
How do I keep ending up in this situation?

Yesterday I had some of the most intense urges I have had, probably the second most intense after the urges I got 2 weeks in to my first attempt. Kept having thoughts related to porn and even looked at some. I didn't masturbate to the content but I did look through quite a lot, I tried to push the thoughts about how I don't really want to do it away and just kept looking. I managed to break myself free and go for a walk and was away from my computer but felt like my mind was all over the place and constantly thinking about sex.

Then today I had similar thoughts and pushed them away. I went from watching a YT video featuring a female, to scrolling her instagram, scrolling other ladies instagrams, then on porn subreddits, then on pornhub. I felt so guilty about watching porn that the guilt fueled up that old part of my brain, and for the first time since I started this journey I looked cuckold themed material. This made me feel ashamed, disgusted in myself and pumped me full of adrenaline. Not something that is healthy for me. I even had some pretty dark thoughts during...

How can I do better than this? I want porn out of my life. I do not want to watch porn or masterbate to porn. But at the same time I crave it and enjoy searching it out. How can I do better? How can I have the self control to say no when saying yes feels so good until right after use?

It was not worth it. That's for sure. The edging, time wasting, feelings of guilt and brief feelings of ecstasy that are shadowed by proper sex to not compare the the brilliant glow of a life of abstinence.

I want to do better and be better. But how ?

I will do research, read inspiration threads and seek answers from those that have succeeded. I am still on the path and I promise never to be ashamed of myself for being here, a place where I am honest with myself and seek to be better.

Best wishes all  :)
Mastery is not an exalted state that lies at the end of the path; it is a state of mind the lies at the very beginning.
Mastery is in the act of setting foot on the path, not in reaching its end.

blueicetea10

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #18 on: May 21, 2020, 02:24:48 PM »
Here's some fantastic inspo: (http://www.rebootnation.org/forum/index.php?topic=15932.msg160114#msg160114)

1.)   Do your best to go hard mode, but it turns out it’s freaking hard, probably why they call it that.
When you fail, it’s okay just pick it back up. I don’t even like putting a specific number of days as goals. My goal is NOT TODAY. That’s all I think of is today and how can I prevent it today. I say stop think 3 months ahead, think about today.
2.)   Do your best to find a girl to help you through it and be patient with you. I don’t buy all that incel crap, haha everyone can find a girl if you keep working on it! But it does help to have someone to readjust what you’re sexually attracted to.
3.)   This may be the hardest part but tell the closest people around you. Tell your parents if you live at home, tell your girlfriend, tell your wife, tell your roommate. Whoever it is that needs to know and can work with you through it. It gets easier with each person you tell. I’m not even ashamed of it anymore, it’s just who I am!
a.   I’m not saying you must tell everyone. But you probably know who can help you and who you can leave out. Also you don't have to give all the details. Just explain you're addicted to porn and want to stop. If you have a significant other, you should tell them.
b.   If you have no one, message me. We can call or skype and hold each other accountable.
          (A secret 4th thing is keep coming back here, nothing motivated me like reading these stories.)

In summary:
  • Hard mode is hard. You will fail, but pick yourself up and keep going. That's a successful recovery.
  • Tell the people you love about your porn addiction. This I've done already and might do so again tonight.
  • Think about today. Don't think about the big picture just tell yourself not today.

If it ain't real no deal. Not today.

Also this is awesome https://www.yourbrainonporn.com/miscellaneous-resources/humor/
Mastery is not an exalted state that lies at the end of the path; it is a state of mind the lies at the very beginning.
Mastery is in the act of setting foot on the path, not in reaching its end.

blueicetea10

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #19 on: May 21, 2020, 02:57:28 PM »
In this fantastic video a man describes his story with porn and gave some great advice for quitting:

He pointed out that moment we all get where we think ahhh fuck it ill just watch porn it feels so great. But I know that it actually feels terrible and the bad feeling afterwards lasts much longer. He also said about how if he gets an urge he'll just do something else.

Here's the video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SiDgeVXzloA

I need to distract myself early on.
Mastery is not an exalted state that lies at the end of the path; it is a state of mind the lies at the very beginning.
Mastery is in the act of setting foot on the path, not in reaching its end.

Jeks

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #20 on: May 21, 2020, 04:48:36 PM »
Hey blue ice tea, one of the best advices i can give, is to have strong reasons why you want to quit. They have got to be psychological as strong as the urges, in order to overcome those.
A big one is, that you are playing with fire. If you dont got any psychological or sexual problems yet, you definitely have a bigger chance on getting those with porn.
If you already feel like, porn is effecting you negatively in your life, then make it clear in yout mind, which areas you sabotage yourself in by using porn.
When you are able to recall those while having urges, i am sure you will double your chances on overcoming those.
Against fantasizing i try to focus on my surroundings and try to think about stuff i see around me. For example when seeing a cup, i think about how a cup is made, what i can drink out of it, maybe tea, what types of tea do i like, what types of tea do i dont like, why is that, maybe there are bitter, what else has a bitter taste... You see where this is going. I try to think about other stuff until i feel like i passed the "rabbit hole" (its called the rabbit hole technique, i have got it from the " brain rebalanced radioshow" on youtube).

Wish you the best of luck.

blueicetea10

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #21 on: May 22, 2020, 06:14:49 AM »
Thanks Jeks I really appreciate that advice, the rabbit hole reminds of the curiosity one might have on psychedelics. It sounds like a fun and effective tool to add to my arsenal.

With regards to having strong reasons to quit I will list some out now as an exercise:
  • I am in a loving and dedicated relationship and I want to be 100% sexually engaged with my partner and not with pixels on a screen attempting to capture the essence of another woman.
  • My porn habits are self destructive and feed off of a centre of shame, any use of any vanilla material leads back to and feeds that shame and I find myself looking at material that conjures many negative feelings that far outweigh the short burst of dopamine which pails in comparison to real sex.
  • I do not want to be plugged into the machine which is pumping dark content in HD into people's minds. The big players behind sights such as p*****b have far too much control over what I grow to find attractive. I want to unplug from that system which is also linked with human trafficking, rape and sexual abuse.
  • I have before experienced very minor PIED and more significant delayed ejaculation and I therefore can see myself as being prone to suffering from porn related penis issues if I continue to watch the stuff.
  • I feel guilty looking at and lusting over images of other women when I am deeply in love with one female who deserves my full attention.
  • I am aware that porn use can errode the ability to feel strong feelings of sexual connection with a real life partner. Regardless of my relationship it is real women that I am interested in, not digital ones.
  • I believe integrity is a measure of your intrinsic value as a human being and I find that my porn use undercuts my own ideas of what's right and who I am. I want to be congruent in my thoughts and actions and proud of the decisions I make, this is not something I can do under the spell of dark, digital errotica.
  • I truly believe that porn is a ticking time bomb of a social and medical epidemic. Given the statistics I have seen on the widespread use of porn, its negative side effects, and the increasing access to more gory and misguided content I predict a wave of PIED and porn induced mental health disorders and relationship problems that will become a huge problem in our time. I have acknowledged this as a young man and I am in a rare position to make this change to my lifestyle young and unplug myself from the machine that is the porn industry and digital sex.

Three current pillars: If it ain't real no deal. Not today. Distract.
« Last Edit: May 27, 2020, 05:37:25 AM by blueicetea10 »
Mastery is not an exalted state that lies at the end of the path; it is a state of mind the lies at the very beginning.
Mastery is in the act of setting foot on the path, not in reaching its end.

blueicetea10

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #22 on: May 27, 2020, 05:49:21 AM »
Hey friends,

I have used porn once since my last post. My tastes were brief and vanilla and the experience was not associated with shame or negative feelings. That's certainly a sign that I can use porn in a way that is at least neutral rather than negative. However, other side effects involved lack of energy, reduced sex drive, reduced sensitivity in real sex, increased oogling and objectification of IRL women and the desire to consume more porn.

I am also very aware that after a while of consuming regular porn, my brain craves more extreme pornography. And I don't want to be spending so many cycles thinking about all this stuff anyway.

I read all my reasons for quitting and they are 100% true! All that's different is the sexual impulsive part of my brain is telling me to deny it and look at it anyway. When I use more rational thinking I totally agree that porn is best to be avoided. If I decide I am going to use it, fine. BUT I will delay delay delay. Because my current focus is not today.

I think to really learn from how living completely without porn would be I will try and go cold turkey from now and for the whole of June. I might M without P during this time but we'll see.

Best of luck all, I hope your journeys are pleasant.
Mastery is not an exalted state that lies at the end of the path; it is a state of mind the lies at the very beginning.
Mastery is in the act of setting foot on the path, not in reaching its end.

blueicetea10

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #23 on: May 29, 2020, 02:44:42 PM »
Hey all !

I hope everyone is well today and wishing the best of luck on your journeys. I used porn yesterday, getting strong urges while working to a deadline and decided to give in rather then fight the distraction all day. Use of material was very vanilla but some compulsive behaviours on show. Next time if it comes to that I'll choose M over PMO. But still following the principles:

  • If it ain't real no deal.
  • Not today. Delay delay delay.
  • M over PMO.
  • Positivity in success and setbacks.

I am joining by accountability buddies on a 90 day challenge.The reason is that I want to see what life is like without PMO! Strange that this is something I have not experienced... for as long as I can remember.

To treat myself when I succeed I'm going to buy something I really really want but can't justify buying. I will keep that in my mind when the urges get real. The 90 day period will end on Thursday 27 August 2020.

Also this thread has has 500 views! Awesome to know others have read and shared in my journey and that I may have helped others who have gone through similar journeys.

Best wishes all  :)
Mastery is not an exalted state that lies at the end of the path; it is a state of mind the lies at the very beginning.
Mastery is in the act of setting foot on the path, not in reaching its end.

Chris Oz

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Re: My Success Story - blueicetea10 Reboot
« Reply #24 on: May 30, 2020, 11:31:37 PM »
Nice one.... I guess I have a partner on this challenge. It's also great to have a reward that we would set to do..... It gsiykd help give extra motivation.

The rabbit hike technique also looks good. I think it works. Only thing is at some point we try to sabotage it.

There's another I talked about on my forum on day 2 of this current challenge. You can check it out.

Congrats on 500 views
Keep pushing back
Chris