Show Posts

This section allows you to view all posts made by this member. Note that you can only see posts made in areas you currently have access to.


Messages - Phineas 808

Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 12
1
Ages 40 and up / Re: Making Recovery my #1 Priority
« on: Today at 12:13:27 PM »
Thank you, PF58!

I'm from the Southwest, U.S.!

Great idea using special dates to launch a fresh recovery effort, recognizing of course that past efforts are by no means 'failures'. But you must know this. I'm very big on symbolism myself, and it's part of my alchemical approach like dates, numbers, colors, etc...(no, I'm not OCD, I promise!),

Look forward to our interaction and mutual support.

2
Good going for day 26, Do!

'Do' keep going, (see what I did there?)  ;)

3
Ages 40 and up / Re: Making Recovery my #1 Priority
« on: January 15, 2021, 11:53:30 AM »
PF58, nice to meet you!

Started reading your journal, and I like the Smart Recovery approach right out of the gate!

Great post here, too, about insanity. I appreciate the saying,

Doing the same thing, but expecting a different result is a form of insanity.

Something like that, lol...

Hope to see more of your posts soon, and will continue reading your journal.


4
Ages 40 and up / Re: First month
« on: January 15, 2021, 11:47:28 AM »
Good going, Marco!

You're making progress, and changing things for the better, slowly but surely!

Keep it going!

5
Ages 40 and up / Re: See them grow up
« on: January 15, 2021, 11:30:49 AM »
Congrats, WIP on the 144 days, and for the 245 besides!

It's unfortunate, isn't it? That for some of us that holidays, especially regarding our significant other, can be 'high risk scenarios'. This is true for myself also.

Learning to separate former habits from reoccurring emotional landmines with the wife is important. To identify if the urges are simply knee-jerk lower brain reactions to cues and stimuli, or perhaps stronger urges driven by deeper emotions, is something we each should know and identify. As the maxim goes, Know thyself.

Be well.

6
Ages 20-29 / Re: My Reboot Journal - 2020
« on: January 13, 2021, 11:24:15 AM »
I like your list, Robert7M!

Good job on laying out the principles that help you (and now others), and walking them out!

Good on you, and blessings.

7
Ages 30-39 / Re: stepbystep's journal
« on: January 13, 2021, 11:14:57 AM »
You're welcome, sbs!

Quote
Everytime I feel bad I go check my phone and social media. But, I know that’s not good from past experience because for me social media leads to porn eventually. I’ll remain extra aware of my phone use this week.

This is an excellent opportunity to change your habits, and hence your behaviors. Try placing your phone elsewhere, and put a carrot (or your favorite healthy snack) in you pocket instead, and reach for that when stressed or feeling bad.

Alternatively, keep your phone (and this will sound silly), when you feel bad, take it out and without opening it, just look at the screen, and then put it back.

These temporary tactics can help change the brain's expectations toward eventual porn use by changing the surrounding habits. And, it shows you that you are ultimately in control, not the bad habit.

8
Success Stories / Re: 60 Days In!
« on: January 13, 2021, 10:58:28 AM »
Quote
Congratulations to you, Phineas.

Above all, don't let your guard down.

Thank you so much, Robert7M!

I've only been able to come 'this far' because I'm not letting my guard down, and have changed my approach to social media, which was a big trip-up for me in the past.

But not letting our guard down means something different to different people:

1. In my case, it means a mindful awareness that pornography no longer (or never has) served me. And it's also a recognition of the power of habit, that if I do certain things to 'feed' urges, then it will lead me down certain already carved out pathways that eventually lead to porn use and/or masturbation. So, it means that I have to change surrounding, even not directly related, habits in order to change my behaviors.

To do the same old things, and yet expect change, is a form of insanity.

2. In some others cases, not letting one's guard down can be a disempowering view of environment or a fear of the murky unconscious mind. What I mean is, this is being overly fearful of being 'triggered', out of a fear that outward circumstances or sub-conscious hurts and traumas of the past, can just jump out of no where, and force you to turn on the computer, and perform PMO. Always viewing oneself as inherently flawed, always a diseased-addict who can never be trusted to be alone, or can never see that certain billboard on the way to work, etc, etc, keeps one in a state of weakness and hyper-vigilance and/or excuse making ('the billboard made me do it').

We have to be convinced, and this will help us bounce back quicker after a lapse, that the reason why I could or did lapse came from within myself, from me- I did it. 

 

9
Ages 40 and up / Re: Lost case. Relapse in day 60
« on: January 11, 2021, 09:24:59 AM »
Strecker, first of all, welcome!

You’re right to say that not all stories on here should be success stories, but neither should you present your story as a failure coming out of the gate.

Really, I see neither success nor failure, but a lot of men (and women) trying, working at changing their lives. Habit change is very possible, but not easy.

I think 60 days without your addiction is wonderful! The fact that you keep trying, even after a lapse is itself a success! It’s not for no reason that this forum doesn’t have a category titled, “Reboot Failures”- because even if your habits persist for decades (as mine have), the fact is that we should always try new things to beat our addiction and never give up trying.

I think in many of our cases, we should focus on changing the mental attitudes that kept us addicted for years, before looking for the physical benefits (which take a little longer) of stopping porn.

You can do it, just pick yourself up and keep going!

10
Ages 30-39 / Re: stepbystep's journal
« on: January 10, 2021, 05:56:15 PM »
Congrats on day 20, sbs!

Keep reaching for those milestones, you're on your way to changing your life.

11
Ages 20-29 / Re: Zander Reboot - Light at the end of the tunnel
« on: January 10, 2021, 05:46:18 PM »
Good determination, Zander!

12
Ages 40 and up / Re: How Shall We Escape?
« on: January 10, 2021, 05:20:12 PM »
In answer to what was yesterday the perfect storm:

* Actively refuse adds on IG and FB, selecting 'Not Interested', if they're of an allurring and suggestive nature.

* Continue to proactively alter IG algorithms to steer away from the provacative in the suggestion area.

* Expect that, as I continue to say No to self-soothing behaviors and exhibit self-control, the opposite sex will be more attracted to me. This will include younger and older women. I need to know how to accept that, yes as flattering, but to also keep focused. I cannot afford to take this as any kind of affirmation or validation of my person or masculinity.

* With the earliest sign of edging or self-soothing, nonjudgmentally speak outloud words that snap you out of whatever fantasy and/or rationalizations. Get up, go to office, and pray it through.

* If you take the iPhone into the restroom in the middle of the night with that intent, as you sit there, type in searches that divert away from p-subs, or even searches that equal recovery or spirituality. Again, take it into prayer, and work it out spiritually.

* If undergoing strong urges, wake up the wife, and work it out with her sexually.

* Overall, relax but sharpen your focus, while being mindful.

Still on point: no reset, and no judgement.   

13
Ages 40 and up / Re: How Shall We Escape?
« on: January 09, 2021, 12:03:48 PM »
Day 64!

This is 8/15 toward my overall goal of 120 days.

This is also 2 months, 3 days or 9 weeks, 1 day into this recovery effort.

Today I hit my goal of 64 days, this is without P, PMO, MO, and without P-Subs or edging.

How do I feel? I feel good, clean, happy that I'm working my plan, hitting my goals toward my main goal. But I'm also very much aware of my weaknesses, and stand- but in His mercy.

I have these 15 day goals divided up into 4 sections in my hard journal, color coded: Red, Maroon, Blue and Green.

Today, I come into my 3rd phase: Blue.

And as I go along, things should be getting easier, and they are. I'm not tempted every day. Most days I don't have urges, but they do come. Sometimes unexpectedly, I'll encounter a post, a picture, a profile on social media. If the cue is strong, I'll simply set my phone aside, and check my pulse rate, has it quickened? I'll also check my breathing, am I breathing shallow? This is in addition to other, more obvious responses. Without shame, I'll simply breathe deep (3-5 deep breaths), then I'll check my pulse again. If the cue is less strong, I will mindfully exit the app or look away from it (if on T.V.).

Sometimes, there's an anticipated scene in a movie, or a strong allure toward something. Do I escape this mindfully? Or, is this just fight-or-flight? Is this prefrontal cortex or the limbic system at play? Can I use this moment as exposure therapy (ERP)? How can I show here that the strength doesn't lie in the external phenomenon but within myself?

There's also the ongoing need to recognize when deeper emotional or spiritual hungers are at play. When these are present, I need to turn to the Lord to fulfill them- or be with family.

So, the 120 days are not here approached in a naive way, as I did before. Nothing magic will happen, I won't all of a sudden be 'Super Christian', etc... Life will go on, with all its problems and pleasures. My cues will change, my urges will be weaker (depending on the cue), but my response will still be in my own power. If I stand or fall, it's all from myself. I say this under grace and undergirded by mercy. These goals, this recovery effort is for me training ground. No, I am not an addict, but I have habituated myself to addictive behaviors, and now I must train myself to live life day-to-day whilst navigating occasional outer or inner cues, situational or emotional, and becoming more and more practiced in using my free-won't.

14
Ages 40 and up / Re: I guess every form of refuge has its price
« on: January 09, 2021, 11:13:26 AM »
jixu, it's all in how you decide to paint this picture now.

This is just a speedbump, and little warning that any slack in diligence can bring us to this place of playing out an old patterned behavior.

You went 57 days clean! That's no small feat. If you take those 57 days and add them to your last streak, and perhaps the one before that, then you can say, for example, you've been clean for 100 days, and only lapsed 1 or 2 times.

I know from your answers and posts here that you're a serious rebooter, one who takes your recovery as highly important. In that regard, you help me to stay sharp. So thank you!

I know that it's so easy to fall back into our former habits... Just this morning I felt that need within me, a post here, a topic there, I knew that all too familiar feeling to linger on social media, and perhaps indulge. So, these are decisions, even after so many days, that we must make mindfully.

By all means, don't think that you're 'starting all over', or anything like that. We know that this is all a part of recovery.

Blessings to you, standing with you, jixu! 

15
Ages 40 and up / Re: New to Reboot Nation
« on: January 09, 2021, 11:03:25 AM »
Good going on 53 and more days, Mark!

Yes, prayer is indispensable as we walk out this victory.

16
Ages 40 and up / Re: Life and Peace (Romans 8:6)
« on: January 06, 2021, 12:46:24 PM »
Quote
It is so crazy to me how one slip up changes your entire mood. It's an almost immediate response. I HATE how I feel physically and mentally after an episode, and you'd think that would be strong enough a reason to stay away forever. Just shows how strong the urge can be...but I know with time and small victories by responding appropriately to the urges that they will diminish.

Yes, the negatives of this thing, even with one's family or health at stake, are not enough to stay away, because of the power of habit. The urges simply are coming from that habituated lower brain (the limbic system). But, no matter how strong the urges, they can never force you to act on them. Learn to neither act on them or act against them, simply do not respond. The more you do this, dismissing the urges, the less strong the urges, and you'll discover your power to change this habit.

So, exactly what you said, lol...! Responding appropriately (by a non-response) to the urges, they will indeed diminish.


Quote
I think part of the reason the urges are strong right now is that I worked this weekend with a group of college students, and many of the girls wore yoga pants (these are not pants and certainly shouldn't be appropriate as winter wear!). This is obviously very difficult to avoid when they're all around you and you have to work closely with them. This coupled with the new stresses of my job lately create a strong urge. I'm just trying to move forward with what I know is good and healthy for me (prayer and Bible reading in the mornings, etc...).

This is actually an excellent opportunity to show the lower brain (and your flesh) whose actually in charge, the new man! Recognize that attraction to beauty is natural. Appreciate the beauty, but then focus elsewhere. Decide ahead of time that you are simply a man who does not lust. What's the saying, "The first look's on God, the second one's on us" ? I used to follow a '2-second rule', also. And there's also the 'bouncing the eyes' strategy from the Every Man's Battle book series. I try not to give it too much thought, though. Decide ahead of time, don't shame yourself (or them), and stay in the presence of God. I also have links on my page1 concerning the issue of lust.

Quote
Trying not to focus so much on not using porn and focusing more on what I know to do. I'm not saying we shouldn't try to muster up some will power, but I know for myself that my will power alone won't ever be enough.

You're absolutely right, will power alone can't do it, and that it's a matter of both the science of habit-change, and spirituality under grace.

We remember from Colossians 2, 'will-worship', which legalists are all about. No, we recognize that the spirit may be willing, but the flesh is weak. This is why law-keeping itself doesn't work. Instead, we surrender our will to God, surrender to the truth of who you are in Christ, holy, a man of God, a man who does not use porn, or lust. Be who you are in Christ, be holy as He is holy. You can be holy because He is holy, you can be holy because you are holy in Him.

17
Ages 40 and up / Re: nofap journal
« on: January 06, 2021, 12:26:11 PM »
Hi, Joel.

Yes, having a strong boundary is important, like, what constitutes a reset for you. And this can only be determined by yourself. Too loose, and it will be full of compromises. Too strict, and your recovery efforts will be too burdensome, legalistic, and actually work against you.

For myself, I'm very imaginative. Fantasy is a serious danger for me, if I engage in that behavior again. In fact, after a moment of p-subs at night, my mind seems to come alive like a movie theater. But to seriously reboot/recover, I have to die to this part of myself. But really, imagination is better served and sharpened by refusing to use it to create sexual fantasies. So, I know what you're talking about. Good idea about labeling and inquiring as to what's behind the need to do this.

Good work on creating a new plan! I was a little concerned on your statements above on punishing yourself, or using that whole negative reinforcement approach. You'll find that most behavioral scientists will agree that this is not necessarily helpful in habit change. I'm not seeking to pontificate here, as it's not my concern how other people do it, but if there's something counter productive, than I hope I can help. I would say, reward? Yes! But punish? Never.

Grateful to see you, Joel. Standing with you no matter what. 

18
Ages 40 and up / Re: How Shall We Escape?
« on: January 06, 2021, 12:01:37 PM »
Quote
Well done on the milestone, Phin. Those Neural Chemical numbers are interesting. Hopefully we can push through the streaks to heal our brains, and make the shift in our hearts, that have also been corrupted by this addiction. I'm with you, let's push forward.

Thank you, Joel! Good to see you!  ;)

Yes, the neural chemicals bring out the physiology of this thing. While habit change itself is physiological, in that the lower brain sends its signals or urges, we pretty much just need to mindfully dismiss these urges, and our habit is changed. This can occur without us being overly focused on the science or even the psychology of it, though they can help (or hurt) in the moment. But what brings it back into the physiology of it, is the quicker mind we acquire and the weaker memories of p-use that longevity provides for us.

In other words, once we get into the habit of dismissing urges, mindfully, non-judgementally, in a relaxed and almost effortless way (though persistent urges and their strength sometimes need extra vigilance), the benefits of the physiology will become more apparent after about 2 months. Our rational mind will be more potent, and the memories of p-use won't be so strong anymore.

Truly glad to see you again, brother!

19
Ages 40 and up / Re: How Shall We Escape?
« on: January 06, 2021, 11:46:29 AM »
Quote
"my overall approach, which is mostly not spent thinking about it."

This is a good and healthy approach! You and I have chatted some in my journal about dealing with triggers and such, and I agree with this approach. I think before a person starts a reboot or early into it, the idea of just not thinking about it seems impossible, but its a worthy goal and a powerful tool. Another thing about it is that it's realistic for the long-term. I mean, if you beat this thing for good, you hope to end up at a place where you are simply not thinking about it. If we're forever running away from every little trigger and white-knuckling through every temptation, that's not freedom and feels exhausting and impractical for the rest of my life. Glad to hear its working for you! And I hope lots of other guys see this as hopeful that they too can stop thinking so much about p.

Congrats on 60 days! Thats definitely a huge marker!

Thank you so much, berrylewis!

I do appreciate how challenging that sounds early on in one's recovery efforts, to simply not think about it.... Now speaking from one spiritual man to another, you know that part of us loves the swill of swine, and yet another part of us loves the things of God, prayer, scripture reading/study, etc... In fact, if we're honest, we can't quite sin as we used to, right? Even if we jumped headlong into it, it doesn't feel natural or normal, something's off.

The reason is, you and I are different creations now, we're brand new because of the resurrection. In Scripture, we're enjoined to cast down every rationalization, every high and prideful thing in ourselves, and bring every thought into captivity unto Christ's obedience (which saves us). This is through weapons that are mighty through God... (2Cor 10).

We know, too, per Rom 8, that our thoughts are either 'spiritual' or 'carnal' as your journal title alludes to. So, if in the early part of our recovery/reboot we're constantly thinking about P-use or PMO, as spiritual people, I would take authority over that in the name of Jesus, bind any evil spirits that seek to keep us in bondage to this, and get 'into the spirit' through prayer and worship. This isn't so much to fight the habit or sin itself (as this is futile per Rom 7), but to change the chanel from carnal thinking to spiritual thinking. It's in this state of spiritual thinking that I have in mind simply not thinking about it.

For you and I, brother, and others if they see this, that not thinking about it is our right and our freedom. We are forgiven of all our sins, past-present-and future. We are right now saved, righteous, holy and sanctified by what He did for us on the cross. If we start with that as our default, as our ground, as our foundation, we can build the rest of our recovery on that.

Thank you again!

20
Success Stories / Re: 60 Days In!
« on: January 05, 2021, 05:27:17 PM »
Thank you, zaraki888!

Yes, this victory comes after years and years of trial and error, discarding what doesn’t work and discovering what does.

I appreciate that you “strongly” discourage porn-blockers, as I do. In fact, I reject the disease-model of addiction as a whole, for disempowering folk from what can be simply a matter of habit change. This, notwithstanding a jacked-up past, abuse scenarios, and/or decades of use.

Be well.

21
Ages 20-29 / Re: Pushing back!
« on: January 05, 2021, 01:04:54 PM »
You got this, Chris! This is just a minor speedbump on the road to recovery.

I couldn't tell you how many milestones I've missed, like, I'm not going to bring this thing into 2018, 2019, 2020, etc...! Or, when I'm about to hit a major goal for me, the night before, bam, flat on my face...!

The truth is, it wasn't that these goals couldn't be hit, it was that I was responding to urges (p-subs, or p) all along, and so I was strengthening the habit, that's all.

It's all habit change, and it's also spiritual.

God's grace and mercy have you, He knows what you're trying to do, and supports you!

"Fall seven times, stand up eight." - Japanese proverb.

The important thing here isn't that you lapsed, but that you bounced back as soon as possible- no lingering! Learn your lessons, and go forward.


22
Success Stories / 60 Days In!
« on: January 05, 2021, 12:06:30 PM »
Day 60!

This is 50% or 1/2 way toward my overall goal of 120 days.

This is also 1 month and 30 days into this recovery effort.

These 60 days are without P, PMO, MO, and 99% without P-Subs or edging.

Also, this is without support groups (like AA, SA, SSA, other than RN), twelve steps, accountability partners, porn-blockers, or other disempowering methods (...if these help you, I'm not knocking them, but they should be only training wheels toward your [actual] recovery).

So, halfway from my goal, how do I feel? Really good, and very optimistic for the future. I know I could, even now, turn heels and fall headlong into porn, and other related habits, but I don't want to.

I have no desire to go back to porn, and if I see a scene on T.V. that's suggestive, or an ad on FB or elsewhere, there's a natural attraction maybe, but there's also an aversion, like, I don't want to tarnish, soil, or compromise my recovery efforts this time... The couple of times, so far, that p-subs (strangely) became an obsession were only episodic moments with no judgment, as they were ultimately dismissed, even if momentarily acted on.

Neural Chemicals and Habit change:

One thing I wanted to mention last 'goal-post' was that I passed what are neural chemical levels acquired during porn use:

DeltaFos B: 6-8 weeks (42-56 days, or between 1 month, 2 weeks to 2 months).

Hypofrontality: 8 weeks (56 days, or close to 2 months).

Having hit 60 days, I've surpassed these limitations concerning neural chemicals. I honestly don't think I was so addicted that I had hypofrontality (slowed blood flow to the prefrontal cortex), but who knows? For certain, if DeltaFos B was acquired, and I'm sure it was (it locks in our memory of porn use), that has subsided. And I feel that, too, meaning that the memories of porn use, while there, seem to no longer have strong feelings attached to them for me.

I'm confident and feel good about my overall approach, which is mostly not spent thinking about it. And while sometimes ambivalence toward p-use exists (between lower and higher brain, or between flesh and spirit), this is becoming less and less, and I'm excited to leave these habits behind as last year's news, and in the rearview mirror of my life.

Let's walk this freedom out together.

23
Ages 40 and up / Re: How Shall We Escape?
« on: January 05, 2021, 11:53:51 AM »
Day 60!

This is 50% or 1/2 way toward my overall goal of 120 days.

This is also 1 month and 30 days into this recovery effort.

These 60 days are without P, PMO, MO, and 99% without P-Subs or edging.

Also, this is without support groups (like AA, SA, SSA, other than RN), twelve steps, accountability partners, porn-blockers, or other disempowering methods (...if these help you, I'm not knocking them, but they should be only training wheels toward your [actual] recovery).

So, halfway from my goal, how do I feel? Really good, and very optimistic for the future. I know I could, even now, turn heels and fall headlong into porn, and other related habits, but I don't want to.

I have no desire to go back to porn, and if I see a scene on T.V. that's suggestive, or an ad on FB or elsewhere, there's a natural attraction maybe, but there's also an aversion, like, I don't want to tarnish, soil, or compromise my recovery efforts this time... The couple of times, so far, that p-subs (strangely) became an obsession were only episodic moments with no judgment, as they were ultimately dismissed, even if momentarily acted on.

Neural Chemicals and Habit change:

One thing I wanted to mention last 'goal-post' was that I passed what are neural chemical levels acquired during porn use:

DeltaFos B: 6-8 weeks (42-56 days, or between 1 month, 2 weeks to 2 months).

Hypofrontality: 8 weeks (56 days, or close to 2 months).

Having hit 60 days, I've surpassed these limitations concerning neural chemicals. I honestly don't think I was so addicted that I had hypofrontality (slowed blood flow to the prefrontal cortex), but who knows? For certain, if DeltaFos B was acquired, and I'm sure it was (it locks in our memory of porn use), that has subsided. And I feel that, too, meaning that the memories of porn use, while there, seem to no longer have strong feelings attached to them for me.

I'm confident and feel good about my overall approach, which is mostly not spent thinking about it. And while sometimes ambivalence toward p-use exists (between lower and higher brain, or between flesh and spirit), this is becoming less and less, and I'm excited to leave these habits behind as last year's news, and in the rearview mirror of my life.

Let's walk this freedom out together.

24
Ages 40 and up / Re: I guess every form of refuge has its price
« on: January 05, 2021, 11:23:59 AM »
Good going, jixu, on 55 days clean!

Your methods or approach are working for you, keep it up!

25
Ages 40 and up / Re: Life and Peace (Romans 8:6)
« on: January 05, 2021, 11:21:06 AM »
Remember, too, how bad it feels when we lapse. All the regret, shame, tiredness, and all the other ugly feelings that accompany only a few moments of exaggerated pleasure.

Be strong, and dismiss the urges.


Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 12