This is a place on the forum where I will store all of the tips that have shared with others as well as tips I have seen others post. It is an ongoing list and will continue to grow. [General Notes: Words in blue are links to information, click on the link to be taken to the source. The majority of the information is gender neutral but information in pink pertains more towards women but a variation may apply to men.] Everything ain't for everybody and if something doesn't work for you or you don't agree with it... don't do it, continue reading until you find something that does. It is very important to understand that the strategies below are to help you through the journey but it is vital that you replace your old habits with new habits so that you won't fall backwards into your old habits. When you stop watching porn and masturbating and you do not replace those habits/ activities with healthier ones, chances are great you will return to where you once found comfort and escape. Here is a growing collection of startup strategies compiled from myself and I've added some from others on NoFap. Keep these in mind, this is by no means a be-all-end-all list of suggestions but it is a list for you to use and add to for yourself and modify to meet your needs. Check back every once in awhile because I do add to it. Also skim over the entire list because new tips may not always be added at the end of the list. Understand that you are engaged in a war to regain the possession of the life you unknowingly gave away to PMO. It should be treated as a hostile enemy because it doesn't play fairly. By not taking this seriously or by taking this halfheartedly, you not will get very far before frustration causes you to surrender to the enemy. Be warned, failure is a part of the process. Not every battle will be won. There are many Success Stories to show that victory is possible but remember, an addict always has the opportunity to fall backwards and thus again surrendering the life you have fought so hard to regain. The battling may end soon for some but the war may last a lifetime for others. That doesn't mean there will be constant battles for life. Even in times of peace the enemy is out to still, kill and destroy you. Take up your shield and your sword and prepare for war! Addiction... Am I really an addict? You wonder if you really have an addiction or you "just happen to like porn/ masturbation" well, the way you know something has control over you or not is, to choose to stop doing it, at that moment, to never do it again. If the thought of that unnerves you, there's a problem, if you can't do it, you have an addiction. For an example, normal addictions everyone has are to food, water and air. Just because you've progressed more than you initially expected on your first (or first few) tries, it doesn't make you any less of an addict than those who are struggling lots more or who have a darker history. Accepting that you're an addict is not enough, you are a serious addict, we are all serious addicts. There are no "stages" or "degree" in a PMO addiction (at least that's how your mindset needs to be). (from @ZenPhysics) This is a marathon, not a sprint. Along the way, the addiction will talk to you, and never in a good way. It will try and joke with you. It will threaten your life, it will tell you you cannot do it, that getting clean is impossible. It will lie to you, reason with you, shout at you, scream at you, whisper to you, beg you, threaten you, blackmail you. It will tell you that it is your only true friend, the only thing in this world you can, actually, count on. You must NOT listen. This addiction is a lying [motherf****r] that you must defriend, disown, eradicate, hate, and expel from your life. If you adopt this attitude for the hard 90, you will win. You cannot beat the addiction while staying friendly with it. It is time to get real. Reality hurts, at first. Then, later, you just become a person who eats pain like candy. Then, later, the pain recedes. Welcome to the fight... (from @WilliamOneAndDone) Addiction acceptance means you acknowledge what you thought you were controlling is now controlling you. Once you accept you have an addiction: Delete all of the P that you have from your computer and smartphone including the browser history and cookies. This will not stop you but will slow you down. Here is how to block sites on your phone or computer. Identify your triggers. What are the things that you happening in your world to cause you to turn to PMO for escape and comfort! This is the most crucial step in the process. (Common triggers are listed at the end of this post) Once your triggers are identified, determine healthy ways of dealing with those triggers such as exercise, running, leaving the stressful situation and going outside for air. Rebooting 101 will show you how to maneuver around the NoFap site. Newbies: List Of Reboot Resources will help understand what NoFap is about. Within this link is a link to a glossary of terms commonly used on NoFap. This will help you communicate knowledgeably and more effectively: Go to Your Brain On Porn to learn more about the effect PMO has on you. Do this also to educate yourself on the damage you are doing to yourself. Guard your eyes. Be careful of what you allow yourself to see. No, you can't live with your eyes closed but you can determine how long you look at something. If you know it may cause you to fall, flee from it! Run in the other direction, sometimes that needs to be literal. When you go to the bathroom, don't take your smartphone with you. (from @countryboy94) Be careful of visual triggers from social media. Delete accounts if necessary. (from @countryboy94) Stop placing yourself in situations where the situation has leverage over you. That means stop placing yourself where you know you may get weak and either give in at the moment or later on. When you see yourself beginning to be in a bad situation (ex. alone with a computer and horny), say what you feel or know you are about to do or likely to do so you can hear yourself say it. (Ex. "I'm alone in a room [with a computer] and I'm feeling lonely [or whatever the emotion is] and horny and I want to [watch watch porn and] masturbate but if I do that, I will have lost the progress I've made and strengthened the desire to do it again". By hearing you say what you are about to do, you may realize the price you pay is not worth what you will receive in return. Be careful of porn substitutes (p-subs). Whether it is Facebook, Instagram, Sports Illustrated Swimsuit edition, adult comics, erotic fiction, etc., using them may eventually lead to porn and in as the name suggests, are often used as porn. You are not helping yourself by using it. If you are a woman, seek out the other women fapstronauts in the Women in Reboot. The women community here is small but no less powerful! Seek solace among your sisters during your journey. A female AP you can rely can make all the difference. (@FlawedChristian) Do not harden your heart against the male fapstronauts that are genuinely trying to help you (you will know them when you see them!). Many of the guys here offering advice come from a good place. (@FlawedChristian) That being said, the report button is here for a reason. Unfortunately some male users will target you because you are a woman here. Do not respond to inappropriate questions for the sake of being nice or polite. (@FlawedChristian) While it can feel empowering speaking up against the misogynistic or sexist comments you come across, remember to practice self-care. It's OK to leave a conversation that you feel is going nowhere. Just like PMO, harmful attitudes about women will take time to unlearn. Save some energy for yourself. (@FlawedChristian) Even though focused on romance first, avoid rom-coms and romance novels if you need too. Just because they are not as sexually explicit doesn't mean they can't contribute to unhealthy fantasies. It's called fiction for a reason. Find your "perfect guy" in the real world. Don't live in your head. (@FlawedChristian) Avoid sex scenes in television/movies and music with sexually explicit lyrics (@Alexandrea) Masturbation... do not keep your hands to yourself. Unless you are bathing, changing your underwear or actually using the bathroom, your hands should be nowhere near your penis. YOU ARE BANNED FROM TOUCHING YOUR PENIS (VAGINA) FOR RECREATION!!! IT IS NOT A TOY!!! IF YOU ENGAGE IN PRONE MASTURBATION (masturbation while on your stomach) STOP THIS BEHAVIOR NOW!!! YOU ARE HARMING YOURSELF!!! Edging - Masturbation without ejaculation or to prolong the act of ejaculation, so if you have been edging, you have been masturbating, they are the same thing [to those who know this, there are too many who seem to see these as two separate actions or issues... they are not.] Your bed is limited to only the time you are sleeping. No laying in bed. As soon you awake, you should get out of bed. Can't sleep, if awake for more than a few minutes, get out of bed until you are sleepy enough to go to sleep. Keep doors open unless necessary. You need to be isolated as little as possible. You're less likely to M when people can see you. Keep curtains and blinds open as much as possible. Similar reason as above and also allows light inside. Many times M'ing is more likely in dark places. At night, keep lights on as often as possible. Similar to above, lights on may lessen your desire to fap. If you are a naked sleeper or a boxer sleeper, consider sleeping in a in jockstrap, cup or briefs or compression shorts, something more constrictive so that you are less likely to feel movement while falling asleep or when awaking. They may provide a better barrier to prevent those that subconsciously reach for their penis at night or in the morning. They may also be a visual barrier for those that have morning erections too irresistible to not touch. Many have found cold and short showers beneficial for temptations control. If you have a faith, lean into it. Allow it to strengthen you in times of weakness. Many of us have gained strength in our weakest moments due to our faith. There are several spiritual and religious groups that are on NoFap dedicated to allow a person to gain additional encouragement and strength through prayer, scripture. There are other social groups as well which support those looking for a specific community of similar interests. Consider seeking an accountability partner. We in the forum will help you but some may become stronger with one or a few to keep them accountable. Never agree with your temptation. (@mvp35lusanity) Begin a journal so that others can encourage you and connect with you.To create a journal, go to the Reboot Logs, find your age group, begin a thread. That thread is your journal. Go back to your first post and place a link to your new journal there so people can find you can follow you. Consider setting up a PMO-tracking day counter to monitor your progress. Become active in this community. The more active you are, the less time you will spend focused on you. The less time focused solely on you, the faster time goes. There is an old saying, "a watched pot of water doesn't boil any faster", which means for this example, focusing solely on yourself and your issues won't make them go away sooner. It's OK to track progress but when spending more time actually living and encouraging others, you will notice the time of your sobriety will go so much faster than if you didn't. Each one, teach one means for each person who has been helped, consider teaching another person from his or her own experiences. Whatever you feed will grow and whatever you starve will eventually die or become so weak it's ineffective! Each time you PMO you feed the addiction, each time you resist, you starve the addiction. [Advice and rant] Along your journey, reflect back to who you were but don't go backwards! What I mean is don't fight to gain a week or a month or 6 months sobriety then waste the progress by "checking to see if my penis (vagina) still works because I've been flatlining and I haven't been horny in awhile". Really? That is only a lie you are telling yourself to MO. If it didn't work, you would feel nothing at all, even when urinating. Seriously! You cannot have it both ways! You cannot complain when you are always horny and then complain when your not horny at all. Consider it a NoFap resting station. Keep moving forward. Similarly, don't decide to "watch P to see if you are still affected by it! If you have been watching P for a 3 years... 5 years... 10, 20. 30 years, what makes you think being sober for a week to 1-2 months is going to override all of the years you've been watching P. Think about it! [Note: For those of you who are new to this forum, the previous two may be lies you tell yourself while in recovery. These two may seem crazy and you may think this is common sense but too many have admitted to one of or both of these situations. This is how powerful the addiction can be. Don't allow yourself to fall into this trap of the enemy called a brain addicted to PMO]. PMO is not a need; it is not analogous to our needs for sex and relationships and food. PMO is an addiction; a drug. It is an artificial construct; asimulation designed to hijack our brain. The fact that there is no single "physical substance" only makes PMO more dangerous. The physical substance being abused in the case of PMO is our brain. That said, we will NOT allow our brain to be abused by the pornography industry. We will NOT crave the company of pixels over our friends and families. We will NOT be a slave to witless desires that ruin our relationships and stunt our personal and professional growth. We will NOT stop yearning, striving and persevering against PMO. (from @Tomato_Bisque) Learn from your past mistakes. Making the same mistakes will wear your resolve to fight longer. If possible, learn from the mistakes others' have made. There are far too many new mistakes that can be made than to get stuck making old ones. If you have a relapse/ reset, ask yourself "What could you have done differently which could have led to a different outcome?", then the next time you are in a similar situation, do that! In my opinion, a required movie for everyone to watch is Groundhog Day. Why? It's a movie about a guy that relives the same day over and over until he makes changes. Many NoFap will foolishly believe you can keep repeating the same behaviors and make progress and then rack your brains wondering why you are back at Day 01. As shown in the movie, when you choose to do differently, different results will occur. Beware of what I call the urge ambush. Urge ambushes are those times when all seems to be going well and you feel as though all is fine and then, from out of nowhere, BAM!!!! You get hit by powerful urges to PMO, not provoked by anything you have done but they, at times, can seem crippling and you really have to fight your way free from those urges. When that happens, you've been urge ambushed! NoFap works best when you see the damage PMO has done to your life and you want to regain what you have given away. "To have sex","just having a relationship" or "I'm tired of being a virgin", are not healthy main goals because you are potentially seeing the the other person as an object whose purpose is to satisfy you, similar to watching porn. A goal of becoming a better, healthier, confident person allows someone to notice and a new you (even if you already have a spouse or are already in a relationship) which may result in having sex or a relationship. It's more about growing as a person without PMO as results do vary. You must renew my commitment for sobriety each day. The commitment is only valid for 24 hours. Next day you are free to make a new decision. Each day choose for sobriety. (from @alex_sober) Flatlining... When not flatlining there are spontaneous erections and mild to powerful urges and guys want the urges (and erections) to stop because the libido is in overdrive. During a flatline season, when everything has paused, guys (women) miss their libido and want erections (sex drive) but with erections (sex drive) come the urges. It's a package deal, one doesn't come without the other. Instead of panicking and stressing about whether if will return or whether you penis still works (sex drive will return) [if you are urinating, it still works], choose to see flatlining as a calm inside the storm. Use this time to rest from battling urges and recap what strategies worked and what didn't work so well; what needs to be added and what removed from your arsenal. When you erections (sex drive) return,and they will return, so will the urges and when they come, they may not return gradually but suddenly so be prepared. Treat flatlining like a much needed break in a marathon race. Wet dreams are a part of the process for many. If they occur for you, they do not count as a relapse or a reset. They are only messy and annoying. Blue balls (blue petals)... they occur and it is uncomfortable but do not allow this condition to become a hinderance because it does pass. ...the trick I used was cold showers. You could also take an ice pack and place it down there or a bag of frozen peas, etc. The cold helps to constrict the blood vessels so it slows the flow of blood to that area. I found that doing one of those things helped the best and even made the pain go away fairly quickly. (from @ILoathePorn) You may want to take a warm bath if that doesn't work. “...E + F + C = M. That is, Excitement plus Fatigue, plus Confusion equals Mistakes.”- Rutledge Etheridge, Agent of Destruction (from @douggie1962) Habits form in a loop: cue - routine - reward. Successfully changing a habit requires three things: - identify your cues - replace the routine with something else - get reward from doing the new routine You can apply this to any habit behaviour. The people who successfully beat addictions are those who have planned out every detail - they have a detailed relapse prevention strategy for dealing with triggers and urges. Urges feel awful but it can be helpful to remember that the average urge lasts less than 10 minutes. If you can plan out something to do that's distracting for when urges hit. A walk or run is good because it gets you away from the computer and also gives reward in itself... The other thing to remember is that porn may be all you can think about if you've seen a trigger but a day or two later it'll [most likely] be forgotten again. (from @diddykong) Fantasizing... "I realized my fantasies are not fantasies but chains - chains holding me back from real joy, real achievement, real living. A good way to know if something is good for you is how you feel after you do it. I NEVER feel better after indulging in self medication, I never feel better after fapping or giving into or dwelling on, a fantasy (and by fantasy I mean porn or fetish or unwanted fantasy -[places] that I think PMO has taken me that are disconnected from what I am really attracted to.)" (from @ivanhoe) Keep in mind that everyone is different; the amount porn watched, the type(s) of porn watched, the span of years you have watched porn will factor into your recovery. (insert 'camming' instead of porn for those who cam) Masturbation has similar variables; the age when you began, your frequency of masturbating and the amount of edging factor into you sobriety. The point being made is results will vary so whether you choose a 30-day, 60-day or 90-day challenge, you may not see the same or similar results as another Fapstronaut and that okay. You will have to run your own race to recovery. If you reach your day of recovery and don't see enough progress, extend your challenge period. The challenges are goals to keep you going and yes, many will reach their milestone and have huge changes and others won't. It's okay either way. You won't know until you get there. Use discretion when reading some of the claims and advice on NoFap (and the internet in general). Verify scientific claims. Not everything good is good for you. Sexual urges and feelings of anxiety are ways that our bodies are trying to communicate to us that they want PMO. I actually think it is natural to crave PMO during NoFap. After all, sex, sleeping, eating, and having fun are all good things in the right context. Our bodies are very smart, but not very intelligent. They are good at detecting pain and pleasure, but they don't think long-term. If it was up to them, we'd be lying on the couch eating, fapping and watching endless TV shows. If you're working out, you can't just tell it that this pain is intentional; if you're doing NoFap, your body doesn't know that abstinence is actually a good thing; etc, Our bodies are built in such an amazing way that eventually they adapt to almost anything. Unfortunately, this process takes some time. In fact, your body will probably put on a strong physical and psychological fight with you before it gives up and learns to adapt to new circumstances. So please be patient with yourself and your body. You're doing the best you can - and you're doing a good job! And in time, your body will thank you in kind. (@lemn) The key to overcoming any addiction is extreme self-discipline. That means treating yourself as if you are in boot camp in numerous areas in life. Forming habits like exercising, keeping a regular schedule, limiting computer time, taking cold showers, and avoiding sugar will all help you achieve your goal. It is very very difficult to break an addiction like this, and it requires action. Speaking from personal experience, I adopted those disciplinary measures a couple months ago. I got to about 70 days and then slipped back into my lazy habits. Then I relapsed. Now I am starting again. Don't make the same mistakes that I made then. (@P__phonic) This a journey and not a sprint. If you believe "by 'this day (date)' I need (want) to be okay", you may find yourself disappointed. Unless you began your addiction yesterday, don't expect to have complete victory by tomorrow. It takes time. We are here for you for as long as it takes. Identifying your triggers is like hearing an early warning alarm showing you the enemy is lurking and ready to strike. Your triggers are you weak points and the PMO already exploits them so it would be wise for you to know them as well. Your triggers will be those things that occur and you find yourself wanting to turn to PMO for escape and comfort. There are visual triggers that may be avoided but the emotional triggers are much more difficult to avoid. Here are some common emotional triggers: Laziness Fear Hunger Anger/ aggravation / frustration Loneliness Tiredness Depression Inebriation General stress Need for control/ feeling out of control or loss of control Boredom Helplessness Illness Here is an acronym of triggers to remember as well, SIFT: Sensations Images Feelings Thoughts When dealing with triggers, remember to STOP!: Stop Take a breath Observe feelings, sensations and thoughts Proceed with something that will help you in the moment (i.e. coping skills) There is more so check out More You May Not Know.