Back from death, I need another round of work

Discussion in 'Ages 40+' started by Gandalf the Grey, Nov 24, 2017.

  1. Bad start to the day. Woke up with a hint of wood. Fascination with it caught my attention for about an hour. Thankfully I had someplace I had to go. The forced time commitment saved me. I feel like I’ll be ok the rest of the day.

    This not quite flatline is going to be a challenge.
  2. Yesterday was a train wreck.

    It started out badly. I thought the half day I planned watching a wrestling tournament with friends (my son wrestles) would give me firm ground from which to finish the day. No dice. Came home and eventually MO'd. No P. But I'm committed to a 90 day no O rewiring so slip and a reset.

    I've made it to 4 days twice now. I started yesterday with no plan, no routine. Frankly, I knew I would give in when things started out badly in the morning. I spent a lot of energy "fighting" but surrendered; understanding the way this shit rots the brain I the fighting effort is going to lose b/c the executive function is so fucked up. When I get into a weak position like I was I need to flip into lists of things to do and work on blocks of 2 or 4 hours. I'm going to lose if I just fight for the day.

    I feel good about my weekly routine; I do not have a viable weekend routine.

    Today I am redoing my time management system (use Todoist; will look at @Billy B.'s suggestion of bullet journal). It needs a refresh. My routine and time management were truly my best weapons last year when I got totally clean for a while. My letting them slip have been the reason I let my addiction slip back in. So I'm rebuilding that today.

    Part of me is worried about the rebooting / rewiring process as a single. I'm trying to set that aside for now. At least I don't have the pressure of a relationship where I might be expected to perform when I'm not ready or when I might share my story and be rejected. I'm setting ... trying to set ... all thoughts of relationship on the shelf for at least 2 months. Yesterday started with a bit of an "oh, woe is me, I'm single ... " and careened off the tracks.

    I know what I have to do. I just have to do it.

  3. It is simpler than I’m making it.

    If I wake up with enough calmness and time in the morning to walk the dogs and meditate AND have a plan for the day calendared I am resilient in fighting the addiction. If I don’t have the time, calmness and plan I am weak in my fight.
    40New30 and Libertad like this.
  4. bobjes

    bobjes Active Member

    Or even simpler.

    MO is not an option!

    Thanks @Billy B. it still works a treat for me right now.

    A man with a plan. Yep very helpful.

    You have this, good feel about your new incarnation (-:
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2017
    Billy B. likes this.
  5. 40New30

    40New30 Keep going

    Billy B. likes this.
  6. I am having an awful day.

    Worked out last night the hardest I've worked out in years. Crossfit workout. The good for me is that I was the only one in the gym who finished the damn thing and I was using the most weight. Went home, ate. Decided to crash. Couldn't sleep and had a drink. Turned into 3 drinks. Finally slept. Slept harder than I have in a long, long time. Didn't set alarm. Overslept.

    Woke up later than I wanted. Panic'd because I thought I'd overslept a conference call. Shameful of the drinks as I don't want to drink when I'm alone. But I did. Got a text from a girl I used to talk with a long time ago. Woman. It started out flirty and went to dirty. Bad, bad timing for me. No porn today but I've M'd some. I am certain I've got that under control but I am in a total fog. Can't concentrate on my work. Shaking I'm so anxious. Feel like I could release the anxiety with a good FAP but I'm not going there. I've been struggling all morning. I'm between sales calls at a Starbucks. I'm going to go out to my car and do a headspace session to see if I can settle it down.

    This feels like withdrawl.

  7. 40New30

    40New30 Keep going

    Not that you didn't already know it but things like alcohol and coffee actually make recovery harder.
    When you're withdrawing your anxiety spikes and drinking and coffee can tip your brain over.

    Anything that increases stress can bring on bad withdrawal symptoms or make them worse.

    Working out hard and then drinking alcohol probably drained your adrenals. Take it easy tonight!
    Billy B. likes this.
  8. I took myself out for dinner. I made a frog list of those things I’ve got to do before the two day conference I have that starts tomorrow.

    And then I went to this Mediterranean restaurant in the neighborhood and had the biggest hugest beef schwarma that I could eat. Set the table with no phone. Just enjoy the meal.

    No I’m home cleaning my apartment so I’ll come back to a clean place. I’ve got time to do that in my frog list and still get to bed at a decent time.

    I finally feel grounded.
    Billy B. likes this.
  9. I'm going to spend two days at a conference. I look forward to it as I have a two hour drive so from the time I leave the house in the morning at 6 until Thursday when I'm done with the conference about 430 I won't have any room in my schedule to succumb to temptation. It is a strategic planning conference for the firm and I have a role so I'll be fully engaged. It is almost ... almost ... like a backpacking trip I'll be so focused and disconnected from tech.

    I made some progress here at the end of the day.

    1. No more alcohol in the house. I'll drink at a social function but not to excess (a doable thing for me) but I won't drink alone or have alcohol in the house. I don't have chips or other bad carbs in the house and so I don't food binge anymore.
    2. I'm going to wean myself off coffee starting Friday.
    3. I had been planning on going on a keto diet starting Friday. I do extremely well on that diet format.
    4. I'm going to continue the workouts. I'm actually felling good about myself as I get fit again. I'll feel better if I peel some pounds. But I'm also going to plan for recovery. Last night started with an "I'm too old to workout like this" nap which turned into a I'm going to sleep for a while which turned into I can't sleep, drink! And then disaster. If I work out like that .... and I will ... I'm going to be more pronounced about my cooldown and recovery. Last night I should have walked the dogs when I got home after I ate and then taken a hot bath with epsom. No work but maybe reading. And then gone to bed at a normal time. That means I have to get the work done during the workday.
    5. I have a 13 week plan that gets me to the end of February focused on wellness, fitness and routine.

    And then I am going to make it all work.

    Today has been a wakeup. I started or restarted/recommitted to getting healthy about a week ago. Before that being 92% healthy with 92% hard-ons sometimes that turned into 9% hard-ons with a partner was "ok". It isn't ok. I just thought I needed a tune up, hence the name change and all. After today I realize this "thing" still has me fully by the balls. I've been hiding it from myself not a wife or g/f. My brain is capable of "tipping" at any time. Scares the fuck out of me. I want it to scare the masturbation out of me so I can get my fuck back .... well, you know what I mean.

    I read a weight lifter / strong man / Christian / college strength coach named Dan John a lot. He was a big motivation for my previous weight loss. He says fat loss is a war. Losing this addiction is a war. I thought I had won the war when I won some big battles last Fall. But I didn't finish it.

    I can be happy living at 92% but I will have to be ok being happy and alone. That feels lonely to me. I have to get well to move forward.

    Billy B. likes this.
  10. Billy B.

    Billy B. PMO is NOT an option!


    It's great to see you doin' so well.

    Feelin' strong, committed, makin' healthy choices.


    You've got this.
  11. Heading back from a two day work conference. Completely focused and untempted. It was my company shareholders meeting. It was a working meeting and we went from 8 AM yesterday morning till midnight. Back up to work at eight again this morning. Just finished. Driving back and contemplating. Spending my windshield time to think. Siri is typing for me.

    I enjoyed the structure of the last two days. I want to improve my ability to keep my days structured.
    Billy B. likes this.
  12. Reset. On a 4 day cycle. I can make it to 4 days as I've proven 3 times. Why do I lose it before day 5? Goal at the moment is 7 days and then when I hit 7 add to it.

    Therapist today. I don't even know what to talk about. I feel like I'm stuck at the same place I've been at for a long time -- socially, spiritually, financially, physically, etc. It's not true but I feel that way.

    When I started working out consistently again about 6 weeks ago I could not bench press 135 and could not do 95 more than 5 or 6 times without one of my arms failing. Last night I did 215. I AM improving as I invest myself in me. But it doesn't feel like improvement.

    On to the day. Next stop meditation.

    40New30 likes this.
  13. TheScriabin

    TheScriabin Well-Known Member

    Sometimes that happens. If you have a good therapist they will recognise that your silence speaks volumes, but a bad therapist won't know how to work with this and you'll just feel that you need to say anything to fill the silence, and around and around you go on the crazy merry-go-nowhere.

    Often when we are close to our deepest feelings, there are no words. Words very often serve to keep the truth at a distance, since that truth may be painful or scary. Highly intellectual, or narcisstic characters may push feelings away a lot with words and rationalisations, because feeings can be messy and make them feel out of control. Underneath the words is sometimes just sadness and pain, and that is non-verbal. You start to realise the meaningless and unhelpfulness of words, and you have to learn to speak from the heart. Then the words will return to you, but in a new way.
    bobjes likes this.
  14. 40New30

    40New30 Keep going

    Those are huge gains in the gym. Awesome.
  15. Libertad

    Libertad Well-Known Member

    I have one appointment a week with a therapist and after waiting for specific advise from him the first few months and after this did not happen, I now see him more like someone who is paid to hear all my shit and to ask me good questions so I can look into myself and find my own view on things. Now, during the week whenever an idea or problem pops up, I write it down, think myself about it and look for possible solutions and take this notes with me when I see the therapist.
  16. I have had an OK week.

    I wrote a long message the other night. Started it and was adding to it as I went through my nightly routine. Before I posted it my computer rebooted to patch. Thoughts lost!

    In summary ...

    Therapist went well. I've been seeing him for nearly 2 years on and off. If we didn't have the relationship we have we would likely be friends. We are working on a new treatment plan which we will finalize in January. Among the things discussed:

    • I find it harder to improve on the margin and move from ok to better than ok to good to great as compared to moving from crisis to ok. The pain of crisis is a motivator! The pain of being less than you want to be is much more subtle.
    • As we were discussing were I am he made the observation that all of my statements were "all or nothing". I do feel I am an all or nothing kind of person. I evaluate myself on an all or nothing basis. I do not do well with normal routine. All or nothing means I am 110% committed or not committed at all. Part of my homework in between sessions is to look out for that.
    • We discussed my PMO habit with the dating sites and the erotica taking the place of porn. His advice was to just let go and acknowledge that I am making a choice. He suggested that I be mindful if I do PMO to the fact that I've made the choice and to understand why that choice makes sense in the moment. Session was Wednesday. I slipped last night. I'm stressed out because of a lot of little things. MO'ing was about relieving the stress. I didn't feel the stress of the 12,562 things (no, I didn't count!) I have to get done before the end of the year while I was MO'ing. I didn't feel the stress of being lonely. It was 100% self medication. Not exactly stunning news. But I am up early this morning working on organizing the list of things and attacking them. I'm stressed out but I am not tempted to PMO / MO.
    • Lastly, he wants me to think about defining myself on the basis of what I don't want / don't want to be. I do make choices that run counter to who I want to be. Many times those decisions are directly creating a situation where I am doing something I don't want or don't want to be. I do not want to be impotent, for instance, so keep my damn hands off myself and my eyeballs on more wholesome things. I see how the homework will help.

    Even with the reset I feel like I am moving forward. We are going to end on the upswing at work. My physical goals (outcomes) are getting hit even as I am struggling to fit fitness into my routine. I'm committed to eradicating PMO / MO from my life even as I'm struggling with it. It is at least an active struggle.

    Watching a wrestling tournament today. Focusing on my son I'll have plenty of thinking time.

  17. I'm doing well without P and O; struggling with the M part.

    I have been mindful about it as my counselor suggested. I am doing it to mute the feelings of stress in my life. Simple as that. I don't do well with details. I'm more of a strategic thinker. And right now in my life it isn't the thinking that needs to be done but he things that get the strategy implemented. And they seem to be an insurmountable pile.

    So I procrastinate. Eat bad. Drink too much. And masturbate.

    Actually, my eating is in check. My drinking is in check. And I'm working through the list. But I am M'ing, sometimes unconsciously. Felling myself through my pants. Bathroom breaks. Just here and there. But its a problem not just here and there ok.

    I woke up early this morning. Yesterday, I made a list of everything that had to get done to relieve the pressure. Today I am knocking the list down one thing at a time. I'm not yet at the point that I feel good about it. I realize that when I get to the other end of the list -- which may not be until Friday -- I'll have at least relived the stress.

    Then I need to figure out how to not get myself back into that position.

    My youngest son is going through a period of extreme anxiety. He is an overachiever who has bit off more than he can chew comfortably. In his therapy session last week I found myself sharing with him how I manage things when I cope well. I realized that I've not been doing well with the things I know to do.

    So today is a work day. Get a little done. Nap. Get a little more done. Bath. Get some more done. YBR post. A few more things. Eat a healthy meal. Play a few minutes of a video game. Get more done. I'm moving ahead but it is slow and it is so far without a serious session of M.

    40New30 likes this.
  18. 40New30

    40New30 Keep going

    Sounds like you're progressing well, one step at a time.
  19. This weekend has all the makings of an awful weekend.

    I traveled this week and in my loneliness jumped back into a couple dating sites. It was easy to rationalize that I was just looking for a dinner date. And I was. But more because I have no confidence I could carry things further. The bad thing about it is that it opened the flood gates. I got to solid ground Thursday night. But I had to reset.

    I'm doing this in 3-4 day cycles.

    Today is day 2. The typical cycle that I've followed is for temptation to build, for a couple of small slips or temptations to arise on day 2, increase on day 3 and then failure on day 4.

    Plan is to reduce and manage the stress before I get to day 4; and to not allow for a small slip today or tomorrow (I've rationalized them as "little" and then they lead to failure. I now see them as the beginning of failure).

    • The boys don't come until noon on Christmas Day. So I have the weekend to get through with the heaviest part emotionally being right at that day 3/4 swing.
    • Money is tight. I've just started year 2 of a 7-year run of paying down the business debt and paying support/alimony payments. I may get a raise in January. But even a raise then doesn't help now. I'm not going to live on the street. I moved our family gift exchange to avoid my doing something stupid that would build long term stress in an effort to relieve short term stress. I'm proud I made that decision. But I've got to deal with the short term stress until payday Friday.
    • I'm terrible behind on tasks at work. Profitability goals are about 6 months behind where I wanted to be (which means no bonus based on plan though I might get a small "attaboy" bonus). Next year is coming up fast and I have things to do to get ready to come out of the gate hard and fast.
    • My apartment is a mess. I get sloppy when I'm depressed. And I have two college kids in the apartment and all of there stuff piled up in the living room.
    • My car is a mess. Sloppy from depression.
    • And, while I want quick fixes nothing on my list is a quick fix. In fact I have some things that little monsters that I have to kill or I'm going to continue in stress limbo. I have to kill them to allow for longer progression but each of them are emotionally yucky to think about.

    That's my pile.

    My therapist asked me to be mindful about my choice when I do give in to PMO or anything related. It is all about relieving stress. And it is clearly the stress of tasks that overwhelms. I'm also stressed from being alone.

    What is different at the beginning of this reset cycle is that I am aware of the cycle dynamic and I'm determined to get this under control.

    I've got a long, long list of things that need to get done. I'm going for the joy of productivity and the dopamine rush of checking things off the list (yup, that's a thing!). I think I'll get through it even if I don't feel entirely confident about it at the moment.

    So that's my day.

    Oh, and something to mention that I am proud of ....

    There's this girl I used to be in love with. Thought she was the one. Turned out I was wrong. Ended up side by side with her at a stop light yesterday. I was there first. My SUV is pretty unique. I caught her looking at me out of the corner of my eye. Looked. We made eye contact for a split second and both looked away. The encounter has not added to my mood. In fact it was really a non event and for that I feel good. It was a positive. Even a few months ago I think she'd have been in my head the entire day yesterday. I'm sad that two people who were so deeply intimate can lose it as quickly and severely as they gain it. But as for her, what might have been, what is and any fantasy of a return ... all gone. I'm over it.

    I'll back today as I work through this.

  20. Gave in.

    I have a little war going on inside.

    On one side is the guy that wants to be well.

    On the other side is a guy who doesn't really give a shit. The work just doesn't seem worth the effort. In fact being well takes away the excuse for why my life is fucked up and I don't have a relationship. My lack of sexual confidence holds me back in pursuing women. I really just go through the motions. I've been thinking ... I'll fix things and get a chick! But deep down part of me doesn't want anyone at all. I'm just comfortable being alone.

    The guy that wants to be well wants a real solid working relationship and a healthy life. But not bad enough to win the war at the moment.

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