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Haven’t Found Your Power Yet?

Discussion in 'Rebooting - Porn Addiction Recovery' started by WBradford, Oct 1, 2022.

  1. WBradford

    WBradford Fapstronaut

    You have the power. I often felt I could never overcome PMO. I was addicted for 1.5 decades, from 13yo til now. But now im convinced I can do it. You may think you dont have the power, but thats just cuz you haven’t figured out how to use it yet. You’re like a prepubescent superhero learning to use your powers; but you may need a little guidance and training. Here’s what you need:

    1) Research the harmful effects of PMO and the benefits of Rebooting. Im talking read a book, watch a documentary, listen to personal accounts, podcasts, YouTube, nofap journals, articles. Hours, days, weeks of research, not just for knowledge but motivation. Train yourself to believe that this is what you need. Having a sense of purpose would sure help. Nothing worth having comes easy.

    2) Build strong physical control (ie. Cold showers, exercise, cut out mood altering substances like caffeine and alcohol, fasting, erect physical barriers to PMO). If you can build up to jumping into a cold shower, go to the gym when you feel lazy, or resist food for a day or more, then you have the power to resist PMO. The harder you train the better; but its not an end-all solution. All this does is strengthen your endurance.

    3) Build strong mental/emotional control (exercise, emotion reflection, meditation, breathing, journal, tool-belt). Thing is, resistance can only take you so far. Eventually your stone mountain fortress will erode under the rains of stress, anxiety, loneliness, depression, desire, un-fulfillment, tiredness, insecurity, self doubt, self image, trauma, boredom, laziness, disappointments, sadness, anger, and everything else. These are all reasons you feel the need to relax by PMO. Thats why you need to solve the puzzle of your mind before you relapse; like a time trial you can retry as many times as you want. Mental/emotional control is about identifying the underlying reasons leading up to PMO urges in the moment, using your self prescribed utility-belt to fix it, and learning how to avoid the rabbit hole the next time.

    4) Make a utility-belt full of resources and alternative activities. Compile a list. Include things you can do anytime anywhere when villainy is afoot, and things you should do on a regular basis to fortify your spirit. You should try to maintain top mental/emotional condition at all times.

    5) Journal your journey so you can better reflect on your failures, and internalize and reference your experiences.

    This is what I’ve learned in the last few weeks of intense trying. You can read more about my experience in my Continuous Journal.
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2022
    swiftowl51 likes this.
  2. WBradford

    WBradford Fapstronaut

    I am powerful in my recovery journey, and it feels awesome.
  3. available_username

    available_username Fapstronaut

    Thanks for this post

    I had a streak for around 40 days, then could no longer handle the stress and sleeplessness due to week old newborn.
    Exciting yet stresful times I am going through. Then had another mini streak of 10 days, relapsed again.

    Esp. now I am a father, I want to stay on path. I dont want to be a negative influwnce to my son. He doesnt deserve a wanker as a father, but someone who aspires great goals and someone he can look up to.
    aveganbutcher and Shadow01 like this.
  4. WBradford

    WBradford Fapstronaut

    The first year of my daughter's life was probably the most stressful of mine. Taking care of a newborn is a lot. And fighting PMO at the same time? Oh man, I can't imagine. That's like doing the most difficult thing ever during the most stressful time ever. I applaud your vigor. Is this your first kid?

    What was your question?
    available_username likes this.
  5. Your post is brilliant WBradford. Can you share some insights about number 4 - resources and alternative activities.
    What as always let me down is not having the power to shift my mind when I get a slight trigger and it builds and builds.
    I can see that is a reason for potential failure and I need to build a way to cope with that.
    WBradford likes this.
  6. available_username

    available_username Fapstronaut

    Yes, our 1st child.
    The question? Good question.

    I am overwhelmed, sleepless and stressed. Do I try the impossible? Maybe.

    But I cant look my son in the eyes while I wank. He should not become a wanker, he should not have a wanker as father.

    Are the urges strong? Hell yes. Just now, I feel the urges, strongly. Will I resist? I hope so.

    Do I try the impossible? Maybe. Sleeplessness is my trigger because.
  7. WBradford

    WBradford Fapstronaut

    Thank you for the vote of confidence :) My utility belt has sort of evolved from just a list of tips and tricks since I originally made this thread. For me, purpose, knowledge, and self control have been probably the biggest factors in recovery.

    Purpose: It's a major advantage to have a purpose greater than yourself. What I mean is, something outside of yourself that concretes your reasons for overcoming PMO addiction; so that when the you get emotionally worn out and overwhelmed with temptation, you can't simply decide that there's no point in trying or that your actions are justified or that its not worth the effort. But people don't always know how to use their purpose to their advantage. I've always had a purpose, but I never knew how to leverage it the way I needed to until last year. Figuring that out is changing how I live my life.

    Knowledge: And where it comes from--learning. I know all too well what you mean when you say you don't have the power to shift your mind once you're triggered. That's addiction in a nutshell. But think about this: Are there NBA players who don't know basketball extremely well? Is someone a good theoretical physicist if they never took a class in physics? Think of the best of the best in something. That person thinks, eats, and breathes that thing. Once PMO urges get intense, they become the forefront of your mind. What we all need to do is make PMO recovery the forefront of our minds, as much of the time that we can. I think this is going to be key for you because when you're overwhelmed with urges you can more easily remember your goal. Think, eat, breathe recovery. Research, take classes, join a group, read books, watch documentaries, see a therapist, listen to podcasts; put your money, time, and energy into what counts. Respect this most difficult task by giving it the resources that it deserves. This should become your hobby. I spent many hours per week in the beginning just researching PMO recovery.

    Self Control: The big issue. You have your purpose for doing this difficult thing, and you've dedicated half of your free time to pursuing it. All the purpose and knowledge in the world wont help you overcome an addiction if you don't use it to strengthen your self control. Exercising your self control is just like body building, except that it's all psychological. You need to weight train and recover right to be a body builder. This is sort of where the list of tips and tricks comes in.

    Exercise to train your power of will
    Take cold showers
    Wear a rubber band on your wrist for snapping yourself (4 purpose: [1] puts urges into perspective, [2] trains your power of will, [3] associates urges with pain, [4] simple distraction. {I've also used face & nut slapping when I don't have a rubber band :emoji_laughing:})
    Actually exercise
    Cut out caffeine (caffeine is known to cause anxiety)
    Cut out alcohol (hinders judgement)
    Cut out other psychoactive substances
    Set ultimatums for the events of relapses (like starting therapy)
    Find creative ways to get out of your comfort zone​

    Recover by seeking motivation, and feeding your spirit and emotions
    Emotional analysis (figure out the underlying emotional reason you're experiencing the urge)
    Research how to become emotionally intelligent
    Journaling (to internalize what you learn as you progress, keep track, and be able to go back and review)
    Read other's journals to see what they've learned
    Read Your Brain on Porn and other relevant books
    Recovery podcasts
    Watch Youtube speakers (motivation, addiction neurology, the effects of porn use, and any subtopic related to an aspect PMO recovery)
    Get plenty of sleep
    Get authentic, personal, and specific in prayer & scripture (and realize: www.youtube.com/watch?v=0PocD_P45vc)
    Socialize (this too can be exercised)
    Join a local addiction recovery group
    Get creative with your recovery​
  8. WBradford

    WBradford Fapstronaut

    I am overwhelmed, sleepless and stressed. Do I try the impossible? Maybe.
    I know what you mean. This is a stressful time for you and your partner (assuming you have one). You could wait until after the kid is a little grown, but how long are we talking? Think about what you're risking and what you're willing to lose. Raising a baby is already hard enough on your relationship. PMO is hard on it too. My PMO use broke my ex-wife's heart. It steals your sexual energy that's meant for your spouse and turns it inward on itself. This means less connecting with them and less need for them. Does your partner know about your PMO use, and are they helping you with it? They should realize that if they love you, then they should research it to try to understand you. You may have to explain that to them.
    But I cant look my son in the eyes while I wank. He should not become a wanker, he should not have a wanker as father.
    You're absolutely right. You owe it to him to do whatever it takes to become better. Fact is, your son is in extreme danger of becoming a porn addict himself. According to a Common Sense survey, "Most teens (73%) reported that they have consumed pornography... including roughly one in three (31%) who said they had viewed pornography while attending school in person... most (54%) reported that they first saw online pornography when they were 13 or younger, including 15% who reported they had seen pornography before they turned 11" (https://www.commonsensemedia.org/si...port/2022-teens-and-pornography-final-web.pdf). You need to be the one to raise him in what is good and right. How can you teach him what he needs to know about PMO if you haven't figured it out yourself? He really needs you man.​

    Are the urges strong? Hell yes. Just now, I feel the urges, strongly. Will I resist? I hope so.
    The urges can get so bad they almost hurt. Several times I experienced an electric tingling sensation in my genitals. I could feel it from the tip, all along my urethra, and down into the vas deferens. You need to understand that PMO recovery is a long process. Almost no one gets it on their first try. It takes a lot of work, knowledge, and persistence. I've been in real recovery since September of last year (tho I've always wanted to stop). They say it takes 3-6mo of abstinence to be considered recovered from an addiction.​

    Do I try the impossible? Maybe. Sleeplessness is my trigger because.
    You need to leverage your existential purpose, expand your knowledge of PMO recovery as much as you can, and strengthen your power of self control. You literally need to be strong enough to stew in your urges all night long alone in the dark without giving in; even if it means you don't get to sleep that night. Recovery has to be of the utmost importance to you.​
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2023
    available_username likes this.
  9. available_username

    available_username Fapstronaut

    Yes, I have a partner. My wife knows about nothing.
    You talk about setting ultimatoms, but I cant inflict this upon her. I cant tell her. Thank god it isnt that bad (else I would have been caught). For once, I dont watch P, but rather only indulge in P subs to do MO. Still bad, dont get me wrong.

    My wife has been traumatized by her P addict father (still married: my MIL is a saint).
    My MIL repeatedly caught him watching P, and even all her kids know about this behavior. Even these days, I caught my FIL search history. Yes, a 56 years old man, a wanker.

    Needless to say, he had always been tired, depressed, lethargic. Looking like a boy in a mans body. P addictions robs you of your humanity and drive to live and enjoy life.

    I should not be like him.
  10. WBradford

    WBradford Fapstronaut

    I hope you're right, man. But it sounds like you haven't reached the bottom of your barrel. I advise you to reconsider your situation. Any and all sexual activity outside of a life long commitment is destructive to both individuals that are a part of the relationship. You're already "doing that to her". She just doesn't know it yet. I think most of us have to make extreme effort and utilize all our resources to overcome PMO. Anything less is a joke.
  11. available_username

    available_username Fapstronaut

    You might be right. But nevertheless, I will try it on my own. It is a curse and blessing that my situation isnt that bad: although it does negatively effect my marriage, so far the effect has been manageable.

    It is that constant nagging feeling that my marriage, career could be so much better. Noone can deny I am in fact an addict when I do MO in the bathroom at work. Yes, I had to write that.

    Yes, you might be right I am afraid. But my wifes situation is different that she was already traumatized by a P addicted father. No need to bring this up, she is already in an emotional fragile state now post partum.
  12. WBradford

    WBradford Fapstronaut

    Perhaps you're right. You don't want to traumatize her even more. After she recovers physically and mentally from childbearing, and once you've had the opportunity to correct the MO yourself, I would still tell her about it. Whether its all in the past or not. She has a right to know who she has committed the rest of her life to. But when it comes time to tell her, do it tactfully. Ponder the right way to bring it up and how to best explain your circumstances. Vulnerability, openness, honesty, empathy; these are essential in marriage. But I'm no marriage counselor.

    And make sure to prioritize your recovery as a significant part of your daily life, cuz an MO addiction is not something your spouse can fix for you. She could help, come the right time, but ultimately it's up to you.