A Fun Journal

Discussion in 'Ages 30-39' started by trapped7, Jan 18, 2013.

  1. trapped7

    trapped7 "what you resist persists"

    Day 0

    Just relapsed again after going for a few days.
    I throught I was going to be ok this time and able to go for a longer time.

    I don't know what to say anymore at this point.
    I won't give up.

    @Gilgamesh and @Raskolnikov
    Thanks for your words.
    Gil79 likes this.
  2. Gil79

    Gil79 Seize the day

    In the book 'psychocybernetics' I just read about the imortance of having mid- to long-term goals or better 'projects' or 'causes'. The author compares it to the need for forward momentum to stay upright when you ride your bike. It makes sense to me and I am redefining them for myself. How about you? Not talking about getting more healthy or free from addiction, but more the things you want to do or accomplish in life. Do you have such kind of anchors?
  3. trapped7

    trapped7 "what you resist persists"

    It's true. P isn't produced to satisfy, but to sell products.
    Just as our brain evolved to help us survive. It didn't evolve to handle this kind of insane stimulation.

    I've read "Psychocybernetics" some 10 years ago (as Bertrand Russell once put it, there are two reasons to read a book. One is to read it, the other to brag about having read it. In my case the reason is the latter as I don't remember a single word from it)
    I don't have a lot of goals right now, be they mid or longterm. There's only one, which I am at least somehwat motivated about. I remember however that at times when I was able to go for a longer period of time without P, gradually goals came to arise more and more clearly. Which is why I think I have to rid myself of the negative, soul-killing, thought-clouding effects of the addiction first.

    Day 1

    There's this notion that's becoming more and more clear to me.
    In order to have an effective recovery strategy in place, i not only have to be able to disengage from addictive behaviour, but it also needs to have an additional quality.
    In order for it to be successful it needs to be sustainable.

    There is no use in being able to go abstain for an X amount of days, weeks or months, if after that one gets sucked back in by the dark embrace of the addiction.

    Getting to 90 days without any addictive behaviour, be it P, F, borderline content or whatever else shall be my goal.
    In recent relapses the common pitfalls were borderline content and F.

    In order to get to the first 30 days, I need to make use of every tool and technique I have aquired since I have started this path.
    Simply having an intention to disengage is nice, but not nearly enough.

    What follows are some ideas in an effort to create a recovery plan that will be both working and durable.

    - Practicing Mindfulness to recognize F better
    - Disengaging instantly when F arises.
    - Recognizing borderline content for what it is - a one-way street back to the depth of the addiction and disengaging.
    - Having a basic framework in place in terms of regular eating, exercise and meditation
    - Going over some of the 10 commandments of relapse prevention as part of my mourning routine.
    - Posting on this forum daily, if only briefly and supporting others if possible
    - P filters - coudn't find anything that was straightforward and efficient, this helped me a lot in the past.
    - looking at problems that are in the back of psyche and trying to tackle them gradually.

    One thing I was successful in this month was meditation, I did so on more than 80% of days.
    30 days is my first goals in my long term goal of 90 days.

    I wish to get to 90 days just to see if my anxiety and symptoms will get better as a result.
    There must be some connection even if it's not the only reason, my feeling is it must be part of it.
  4. A New Man

    A New Man White Knuckle Brigade 2013

    This is so hard to get your head around- how can a single moment of titillation be harmful? It's like the recovering alcoholic or former cigarette smoker who can't even smell drink or smoke without it setting off cascades of associations and the whole addictive chain reaction. For guys like us even sitting next to an attractive woman on the train can be a challenge. Whatever sets fire to the dopamine pathways (and it feels more and more like fire the longer i'm clean) is to be avoided.

    YES. 1000 x YES.

    Awesome! Can i ask, what type of meditation do you do? Do you have a special spot you sit, how long do you do it, and have you found it getting easier/"improving"?
  5. trapped7

    trapped7 "what you resist persists"

    So I've found out a few things over the past month.

    Most importantly I found one of the causes of the extremely strong symptoms I've had.
    Turns out it was supplements I've been taking over the past year or so. These were supposed to contribute to my overall health and help me sleep better.
    Well, not only did they not help me sleep, but they also caused an entire host of symptoms during the day, fatigue and dizziness being the most prevalent of them.

    Now I still have fatigue and experience symptoms but not on that scale. So in general I was able to move from feeling like a general 0.5/10 (Sometimes I basically felt close to dying) to an overall 2/10 and at some times 3/10 which is tremendous progress. So now I feel like at least I have a chance if I continue the right way, even if it's still really tough.

    It's too bad I couldn't see it earlier, but in the meantime I know that's just the way life moves sometimes.

    What has this experience taught me:

    What I am _not_ doing is probably even more important for my health than what I _am_ doing.
    To identify everything I am doing that might be detrimental to my health and disposing of it in a strategic fashion will be very important. Addictive behavior is the obvious one, but not the only one.

    The other thing I realized with my addiction, after having reviewed InnerGold's insightful video about P - they refer to it as the "perfect poison" is that I need realistic goals with my addiction.
    It reminded me that I need to manage my addiction rather getting rid of it.

    The point they are making is that while a part of me has decided to quit a hundred times over, there's also a part of me that wants to continue the behavior.
    And not only does it want to continue, it's in fact a matter of survival for that part. It is conditioned to viewing P as a matter of survival.

    So whenever I say "I promise myself never to watch P again" or I need to get to 90 days without P, that part actually sees it as a threat to survival, which is why it is initially so hard to stop.

    Therefore I shall have humble goals for now. Right now it's to go for 3 days without acting out, which I find achievable - I need to get through today and tomorrow without acting out.
    If I relapse I will try to set a realistic goal again.

    The main purpose here is to extend the time intervals between relapses for longer and longer periods of time, and to only slide down the mountain a bit when relapsing, as opposed to all the way down.

    Thanks for the post and sorry for the late response.
    I do have a spot that is dedicated to meditating and found that helps.
    It also helped me to set a time every day where I would meditate. I found that there needs to be some kind of trigger to start the desired behavior.

    I practice meditation the way I learned it in Zen, and I usually sit for 25 minutes or 2x 25 minutes with a minute to stand up in between.
    5 minutes are certainly better than nothing, but in my experience I can actually start to feel a difference if I go for longer intervals.
    I haven't meditated that much this month, but I plan to start again.
    Bezoechow and A New Man like this.
  6. Fry2

    Fry2 Well-Known Member

    What supplements did you take? I found that some really help for fatigue and some tend to make it worse.
  7. Gil79

    Gil79 Seize the day

    I am happy to hear you found at least a part of the causes of feeling so bad. What about the insomnia then? I think it woukd still be good if you talk to a medical practitioner.
  8. trapped7

    trapped7 "what you resist persists"


    I have tried everything from Siberian Ginseng to Rhodiola Rosea and from Lavender to Ashwagandha.
    The only supplement I ever found that produces a noticable positive difference is Magnesium, which seems to help the heart palpitations I've had.

    Lemon Balm was probably one of the ones that produced strong symptoms during the day.
    What are you taking?

    The insomnia got a bit better. Now, I can sleep for 6 hours at least during most nights, without waking up more than once.
    A good medical practicioner might be good. Unfortunately I've made the experience that doctors often can't tell me what I have or make a misdiagnosis, especially if blood tests come back normal.

    I was able to go for about 10 days without any acting out, which is huge progress.
    I will make humble, achievable goals and try to make my streaks longer.

    That's pretty much it right now. I am not feeling great at all, and still have symptoms, but I definitely got quite a bit better.
  9. trapped7

    trapped7 "what you resist persists"

    My health is a bit better.
    It's still far from great, but since I stopped supplements altogether it certainly got better.

    My next step is to eat a healthy breakfast every day, consisting mainly of fruits and probably eggs on some days.
    Small steps at a time, and trying to make them more consistent.

    - eating more fruits and veggies, enough protein
    - eating regulary
    - exercising
    - regular sleep, sufficient rest
    - meditation
    - real life socialising
    - speaking the truth to self and others

    - PMO duh
    - too much sugar
    - not eating regularly
    - constant worrying
    - hours of screen time

    Simple enough, but someone's gotta do it, so why not me
  10. Gil79

    Gil79 Seize the day

    I am happy to hear that you feel at least slightly better. I hope that you can find out what is causing the remaining ill-feeling. Have you ever tried intermittent fasting? Basically for a couple of days a week, you don't eat after dinner and skip breakfast. It gives your digestive system time to recover and burn the waste in your body. At least that is how it is promoted. I have tried it multiple times and I really feel good with it.
  11. trapped7

    trapped7 "what you resist persists"

    Day 0

    Starting all over again.
    It's already been 6 years since I've started this. And right now I feel like I am exactly where I started.
    Sure, some other aspects in life have changed, some for the better, which is great. But I'm sure it is possible to feel all of that much much more than I do.

    I can feel right now how P and all the acting out is numbing my emotions.
    It covers up how I actually feel and makes it almost impossible to actually connect with people or care about things.

    After all this time I sometimes think I can't do it. It's been a long time since I've been able to go for longer periods of time without.

    I know all the tools, all the things I am supposed to do, but I feel discouraged and it seems now matter if I try, in the end I'll relapse anyway and end up where I started.

    So I come here, because still somewhere I know walking this path is actually good for me.
    And I will keep fighting anyway.
  12. Gil79

    Gil79 Seize the day

    Out of sympathy I decided to support you and start at day 0 again too :p

    Maybe it is good to make a list about the area's in which you have improved your life. I am sure there's more than you think on that list. I am not sure when your health problems kicked in because I have been away for a couple of years, but I do see that your posts were more positive and lighter than they are now. I can imagine that if you don't have energy in general because of health issues it is difficult to improve other aspects of your life and make a plan for the future. Still It is important to keep loking ahead and have a clear image for yourself on how you see yourself in e.g. 6 years from now.

    I know you will keep fighting and I am sure that you find a way to be and feel healthy again. I am with you!
  13. trapped7

    trapped7 "what you resist persists"

    Day 5

    I'm fighting.

    I was able to identify that supplements made things worse, but symptoms are still here.
    The only explanation I have, given I don't have a serious underlying health problem that noone was able to find yet, is the addiction.

    The acting out in combination with me being in my late thirties now and its effects are more strongly felt.

    If I can stay away from internet P, cultivate a healthy lifestyle, it must get better. If I don't have some other chronic health issue.

    I have many problems and/or difficult circumstances in my life, that I need to address. And all of them are difficult to address.
    I want to find a way.

    Thanks to everyone here who has been supporting me in the past.
    Gil79 likes this.
  14. trapped7

    trapped7 "what you resist persists"

    Day 1

    Back to self-therapeutic posting.

    Time here on earth is extremely limited.
    And none of us actually know how much we have.

    Better get this right.

    When triggered with fantasies or a desire to watch P ask:
    - What will be the end result?

    The key is asking this right away, not halfway in the process.

    Also :
    - What will I get if I don't act out?

    We all know the answers to these questions
    There's only one logical decision after answering these.

    They key is engaging the rational mind early enough, before the addicted part can act out.

    That, and living a healthy and balanced lifestyle.
    There's no substitute for eating well, exercising and sleeping enough.
    Bezoechow and Gil79 like this.
  15. Bezoechow

    Bezoechow Member

    Wew I read your entire journal. What a road it's been. I learned that you're a musician, probably from Norway, who's learned over the years about the emotional disturbances behind his addiction. Still however it seems that you haven't been able to get out, to get clean.

    In my situation I want to give something back. Reading journals like yours has truely been very helpful for me. But advice you've had in spades over the years, and support as well. The only thing I can offer is my own newbie experience.

    I see that you're struggling with fatigue, especially once you've got a bit of a streak going. I had the same thing for years and years. One month ago I realised that my symptoms were very similar to a burn-out: the exhaustion, the feelings of stress and overstimulation. I was overworking myself! The porn was depleting my dopamine and without that hormone I had no idea what my limits were. I could and did go over my limits again and again, forcing myself to do whatever I thought was good for me. That's the thing, I was only thinking and not feeling. When I reconnected with my feelings I got my limits back. Initially these were extremely tight. I didn't feel like doing anything at all. For the first few days I mostly just sat in my chair waiting for some desire to come up. This was during my vacation so that I had my days free. I would read for a few minutes, then wait. Play a bit of piano, then wait again. You get the picture. But then the miracle started to happen. Every day that I kept within my limits, the limits that were put down by my natural dopamine, I would get a little more energy. A little more focus, better quality sleep, more emotion, more desire. I learned that whenever I went beyond my limits I'd relapse. Simple as that. But if I didn't, I had no problems keeping addiction at bay. Just doing what I feel like, and not doing anything else but that, even if it does mean masturbating, even if it does mean eating a frozen pizza instead of grocery shopping. I found that as my energy returned I started feeling like doing healthy and responsible things. No forcing required! Just happening naturally, and in dialogue with my thinking. Finally it did also bring up strong emotions, emotions that I've wanted to avoid for all these years. That's the hard part now: dealing with anger and sadness.

    Well I got that out of my system :eek:. I'll be following your journal from now on. We have a love for music in common and I'm very jealous that you've been employed as a musician. I'm still mucking about with my studies, heh. I hope you'll have good recovery and that you'll write more about it here. Good luck and keep up the good work!
    Gil79 likes this.
  16. trapped7

    trapped7 "what you resist persists"

    Day 1

    I can't really say that I relapsed.

    "Relapsing" makes it sounds occasional.
    I've just been giving in to an addictive lifestyle again.

    I am trying to focus my mind to "How will I feel afterwards if I / if I don't".

    Reading an entire journal on here, wow. Good to hear if some of it was helpful.
    Reconnecting with our feelings, with our inner state is a large part of what this is about, isn't it.
    Not pursueing addictive behaviour has to be the baseline, then reconnecting can also be practiced I believe. Or maybe more accurately, both support each other.
    Good luck on your way to recovery.
    Bezoechow likes this.
  17. Gil79

    Gil79 Seize the day

    I can really recommend scaling the intensity of acting out like statisticsman79 does ;):D. It goes from 1 (mild fantasies or ogling) to 10 (long edging PMO session). When you just give a number you dont even have to call it a relapse but can just focus on what it is and why. You can follow your progress over time and try to bring down your weekly average by not acting out or staying in the lower intensity. It motivates better than counting days, which (in my case) triggers the all or nothing mentality (better binge now I fucked up anyway).
  18. trapped7

    trapped7 "what you resist persists"

    Ok, let's do some Gilgastats.

    Nutrition 7/10
    Exercise 3/10
    Mindfulness 4/10
    Proactiveness 6/10
    Authenticity 7/10

    more to follow
    Gil79 and Bezoechow like this.
  19. Bezoechow

    Bezoechow Member

    Lol :D
    Gil79 likes this.
  20. trapped7

    trapped7 "what you resist persists"

    Nutrition: 7
    Exercise: 3
    Mindfulness: 3/10
    Proactiveness: 7/10
    Authenticity: 8/10
    Improving skills: 0/10
    Addictive Behaviour: 3/10
    Socialising: 6/10

    Already starting to see potential of tracking these categories daily.

    It's never all or nothing, is it.
    We can move towards increased or decreased health. Towards more fulfillment or more discontentment.

    Only a Sith thinks in absolutes. My god what a ridiculous line that was.
    Bezoechow likes this.

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