Moz journal

Discussion in 'Ages 40+' started by Mozenjo, May 22, 2014.

  1. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    Pushed through some urges and came here to read other's journals. That's always a great source of sustenance. It's why I'm still here almost 7 years into this.
    The plan is to read a chapter in my workbook every 2 days and do the exercises, no matter how difficult they may be.
     
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  2. realness

    realness Active Member

    Thinking of you Moz and hope you're having a good day.
     
  3. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    Thanks realness, I appreciate that. My day has been tough, even though it's only 9am here on the west coast.
    Lost sleep thinking about work stresses, got up in a bad mood and then left a frustrated voice message for a flaky consultant, and have been battling anxiety and urges all morning. Now I'm just working, and am calming down, but really wanted to get lost in the PMO sauce to escape. But I knew what that would do: Make my mood exponentially worse. So I didn't do it. I'm going to log off and go take a shower (yes, with a COLD finish!).

    I reset because when I returned from the GF's house early Sunday morning after a nice night of sex, I justified rubbing another one out since I still had sexual energy going on. But instead of doing it without pics, or even better, just pushing through the urges, I PMO'd. Shit.
    Later that day I did some good work in my addiction workbook, which was identifying the faulty thinking patterns I engage in when falling into the habit. Writing them down; things like rationalization, entitlement, playing the victim, minimization of the problem, etc., was very helpful. Thinking about them this morning when I was in the danger zone, helped get me through.

    Have a great day.
     
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  4. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    This can be a real bugger. I always feel like jacking off after the wife and I have had sex. It takes me two to three days before the compulsion to MO dies down. It reminds me of when people are angry and seeing red - there is simply no reasoning with them. So, sometimes when I get that inevitable feeling after sex I say to myself "why are you angry?" This can be enough to just drain that energy away, while other times it at least makes me think about my life, which can also dissuade me from MO.

    I remember how you used to write, Moz and your tone has changed. You have changed. Even when you have a little stumble you are guiding yourself to get back on track. You are doing great work, my friend.
     
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  5. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    Saville, your words are exactly what I needed this morning! Yes, having real sex primes the pump :D and I usually want more. The girlfriend told me after sex on Saturday that I should feel free to "release" during the week, since saving it up for her means there is a lot of, uh, me in her, and she would be OK with a little less mess. That felt like a pass to MO, which as I've been saying here forever, isn't my main problem. Sure, MO also primes the pump, and my ability to MO without pictures hasn't worked out very often, so best to keep MO to a bare minimum. Or not at all. Stopping the viewing is the problem. That's what fucked my brain up and caused this ED, not MO. I've gone longer without MO than I have without pictures, which is telling. My compulsion to O isn't nearly what it used to be. I don't get myself worked up so I can O. That's not how the dopamine craving works. It wants the search for pleasure, not the actual pleasure. If we could look over our own shoulders as we flip through hundreds or thousands of pictures looking for the right one, we'd see how ridiculous and unsatisfying that is.

    I'm really trying to get to that critical point where I take that sense of inevitability and flip it. The tractor beam that guides my hands to the phone or mouse is just inertia. I listened to some Eckhart Tolle on the way to work yesterday. He was talking to a group about breaking habits. He said that people are sometimes like caterpillars that aren't ready to become butterflies. They like being caterpillars. The won't break out of their cocoons (bad habits) because they are comfortable with what they know, and they won't break free until they're ready, if at all. But he said that the inertia to just keep doing what we've always done is the problem. So waiting until we're ready to break free isn't the ticket out of this. I remember someone posting on my journal years ago, saying, "Moz, one day you'll just be done with this", or something like that. But here I am, an older, balder, greyer caterpillar. I'm not going to break out of this cocoon if I wait for some beam of enlightenment to finally change my behavior. I know what I need to do. I know why I've done this thing over and over in my past, why I still do it now, and what I have to do to stop doing it. I just need to stop doing it.
     
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  6. forlorn

    forlorn Well-Known Member

    Reminds me of a saying by Tony Robbins:

    "You see, in life, lots of people know what to do, but few actually do what they know. Knowing is not enough! You must take action".

    Our situation is not an easy one. We're dealing with chemical withdrawal and in order to break out of the cocoon, we have to get off the dopamine.
     
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  7. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    You got it, forlorn.
    My number one priority is to stop and think before taking that first peek. That's what it's all about.
    My latest exercise is to list every little step in the leadup to a fall. The goal is to write down the genesis of the process and see if you can get to 36 steps or so. That's going to be difficult, since the step that is clicking on the first YouTube video doesn't have many steps that come before it, other than maybe thinking "I've got it under control this time". But there are things that do happen before that, like any of the HALT symptoms (hungry, angry, lonely, tired). They can break down the wall if not seen for what they are.
    I'm getting there, but this is a bitch.
     
  8. forlorn

    forlorn Well-Known Member

    36 does seem like a lot, but I suppose it depends how you identify the physical and emotional patterns that lead to a fall. After all, there are likely lots of smaller steps that occur along the way (when we’re on autopilot we don’t think about them). Breaking it down could allow you to see the different elements that make up the habit e.g. slumped in office chair, felt stressed about work, decided to open a new browser, moved the cursor, typed in YouTube, watched a regular video, navigated to a different video, decided to search for something with adult content, performed a new search, took that first peek etc etc
     
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  9. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    Yes you are!

    When I was in the midst of my cheating ways I was not open to reason. I did have that voice that was telling me to stop, but I shouted it down. When I finally got caught those loud voices were nowhere to be found, not a peep out of them. Instead, I felt pathetic, idiotic, like a failure and riddled with guilt. These powerful desires to get our hit of dopamine become sniveling little snails when shown the light of day. I think where I'm going with this is that the hold feels strong, but is in reality illusory. Bust the illusion, bust the addiction.
     
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  10. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    Yes, exactly, forlorn. As I sit here working, the usual thoughts are coming, and I've had to tell my hand to stop gravitating to my crotch. It's pretty automatic to let it wander there, even if just to scratch an itch. Uh huh.
    So, yes, the exercise of writing all this down won't be so difficult after all.
     
  11. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    "Bust the illusion, bust the addiction". Another perfect quote to post on my mental refrigerator. Thank you, my friend.
     
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  12. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    The last 3 days were clean, which feels good. Had some real sex on Sunday, which was great. No acting on the chaser yesterday, and no pictures. A clean day ahead.
     
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  13. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    I'm now starting my 8th year here. I officially finished year seven yesterday.
    Though I'm in a better place than when I started, my resolve is obviously not what it needs to be. I still allow viewing sessions, even if P subs more than porn lately. But that's a false accomplishment, because it still produces the same effects on the brain I so want to eliminate.
    My girlfriend and I had a bad night Friday before last (9 days ago), and I wasn't sure we were going to get past that one. Her dad was verbally abusive to her when she was growing up, so when I express anger about something (which is sometimes unwarranted), she really get's upset. My temper has gotten me into plenty of trouble in the past. I need to keep working on that. We have talked about it, and I told her I'm committed to making good progress on it.
    Anyway, she's a keeper, and if I'm going to be lucky enough to have her in my life, I need to get my shit together in another important way, which of course is to remove porn from my life.
    So I'm starting this week with a renewed commitment to stop the peeking. To be clean. Consistently. Day 1 of Year 8 begins now. It needs to be Year 1 of being clean.
     
  14. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    You can do it! You will do it! :) You really have made great progress, as I've mentioned before. Your GF is a keeper, but so are you!
     
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  15. NCBob

    NCBob The 11th commandment: Thou shalt not peek:-)

    Hey Moz, glad you're still at it, keep up your most excellent efforts:)

    As I've mentioned before, these kind of statements remind me of the brave knight about to go to battle against the fire-eating dragon, and about to get his ass singedo_O
    There's something that this dragon needs to say to us, that we are oblivious to hearing, when we do battle against it. Maybe this needs to be Year 1 of listening deeply:D
     
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  16. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    Thank you Saville! As Musicman used to say: One day at a time.
     
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  17. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    Yep, something's gotta change alright, NCBob. But whatever the beast is trying to tell me, I'll be better at listening to it when I stop feeding it o_O
     
  18. NCBob

    NCBob The 11th commandment: Thou shalt not peek:-)

    It's finding that fine line between feeding it, and pushing back against it, Moz. That's where the listening takes place:)
     
  19. forlorn

    forlorn Well-Known Member

    As I alluded to on OTB's thread I think we need to be careful not to expect perfectionism from ourselves. There's a fine line between defeatism and perfectionism. While the goal is to eliminate peeking / PMO, chances are you will have slips along the way. I guess what I'm trying to say is, don't feel ashamed if you fall short of perfection in your pursuit of the goal. It leads to thinking along the lines of "I said I'd never do XYZ again but then I went and did it. I slipped so I might as well keep going down this path...."

    The pursuit of perfectionism can leave us trapped in a loop. As long as you're striving, improving and building resilience that's what matters. Make it your best year yet.
     
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  20. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    Yes, forlorn, being something of a perfectionist all my life, there is a certain fatalism that comes from missing the mark and just throwing my hands up and saying, "what's the use?"
    Change is hard. It takes real work. I do understand that expecting no slip-ups is unrealistic. But I've experienced glimpses of what life without this addiction will be like. When I go a couple weeks without it, my head is clearer, my ability to perform without a pill in bed improves dramatically, etc. The rewards are amazing, and totally worth the effort. If I could slip up and not undo the good work, then maybe I'd accept the setbacks better. But that's not how I'm wired.
    I've heard so many recovering alcoholics here state what I know to be true: you have to have zero tolerance, or it doesn't work. They've also said that giving up porn is more difficult. I believe them on both points.
    The exercises I'm doing in my addiction workbook are difficult, but are revealing the daily traps I set for myself, and the patterns that are so ingrained. Part of being successful is of course consistency. So, just like daily affirmations can pound positive thoughts into your consciousness and subconsciousness, daily reminders of what works will do the same. If I work harder at this, I'll achieve more success. I may not be perfect, but I'll be better.
     
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