My way to Liberty

Discussion in 'Ages 40+' started by Libertad, Oct 22, 2013.

  1. Libertad

    Libertad Well-Known Member

    My coffee consumption went up over the last year and I was consuming around 6-7 cups of coffee a day and started to look into it a bit more.

    Here is a good article about coffee consumption: All About Caffeine Addiction and Withdrawal & How to Quit | Be Brain Fit

    Two take aways I found interesting:

    1. Caffeine floods the brain with unnaturally high levels of dopamine, fueling tendencies toward insomnia, an overactive libido, addictions, and other self-destructive behaviors.


    2.When your system is flooded with caffeine, adenosine can no longer turn off your brain. So, your brain on caffeine is like a car with no brakes and the accelerator pushed to the floor.



    “Caffeine is the Trojan horse. It looks like a gift but instead delivers adrenal stress, low blood sugar, mood and energy swings, fatigue, depression, malnutrition, and disturbed sleep.”
    — Stephen Cherniske, author of Caffeine Blues


    Caffeine also changes the electrical activity of the brain, causing an increase in beta brainwaves which are linked to a state of arousal.

    My conclusion from the two points above: In our case of addiction to PMO, it could be a really good idea to look into the coffee consumption and maybe limit it or quit it for a period of time to see if something changes in the gravings for PMO.

    To point 1: After not using PMO but I still graved for dopamine, I felt the unconscious need for coffee to give me at least a little bit of a dopamine rush.

    To point 2: The expression that the adenosine disabler coffee can lower the control one has, they used the term like a car with no brakes and the accelerator pushed to the floor, should be a warning if one is losing control in some aspect of life.

    I cut out coffee 28 days ago. I love coffee, but it seems not a good idea if one has difficulty to quit something, to continue to take a substance that lowers the control you have over your actions.
    Maybe I will introduce it later again but with a strict limit of 1 or 2 cups a day, because it seems that it also has a few health benefits when consumed in moderation.
    All the best to all of you here.
     
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2022
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  2. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    I used food to get that dopamine rush. Once I quit PMO my food intake increased dramatically, particularly things like chocolate.

    I think it's good to quit certain things for a time and see what the effect, if any, is on our person. We are all so individual. I do think 6-7 coffees is too many, but probably 1 a day would be fine.
     
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  3. Libertad

    Libertad Well-Known Member

    Because in the last few months, I overreacted a few times against other people, also I would like to be calmer and less stressed over things that in the great scheme of things do not really matter, and also because I feel the need in this modern times of fast changes and chaos of some sort of guidance, for example like Dave Ramsey has for finances, a based guidance for life, I was looking into Stoicism. I belief that stoicism, which I find is in big parts based on biblical principals, has a more practical view on things in my opinion. The emphasis on meditation, journaling, but combined with action.

    The way to overcome past trauma and get out of the comfort zone:
    Action-Trigger- Release- Repeat

    I was doing the action step in a few occasions over the last few months, got triggered mainly in two instances by the words and reactions of others pretty bad and had difficulty to find a way to release it. I went into a kind of revenge mode and reacted harsh, which looking back was not the best way to deal with the situation. Before, when I was still using PMO as an escape, I would have gone into a binge session practicing PMO and after that into a depressed state of mind for days.
    Now the energy, anger, rage, goes more externally.
    Also, I should find a way to be mindfull to the fact, that I am changing, and friends and family need their time to adapt to the changing me, that has more energy, is less of a push over, stands up for himself and is clearer in what he wants or what he is willing to accept from others.



    Here is an overview over Stoicism as Markus Aurelius saw it.

    Marcus Aurelius: A Brief Summary of The Meditations
    March 6, 2015Stoicism


    [​IMG]
    Statue of Marcus Aurelius on horseback.

    If you are distressed by anything external, the pain is not due to the thing itself, but to your estimate of it; and this you have the power to revoke at any moment.~ Marcus Aurelius


    Marcus Aurelius (121 – 180 AD) was Roman Emperor from 161 to 180 and is one of the most important Stoic philosophers. What today we call the Meditations take the form of a personal notebook, which wasn’t intended for publication. Aurelius called them “Writings To Myself.” They were written in Greek, although his native tongue was Latin, and were probably composed while he was on military campaigns in central Europe, c. AD 171-175. Today it is widely regarded as one of the most important works in all of Western literature. He died, most likely from the plague or cancer, on a military campaign in present-day Austria. The work is divided into 12 short books.

    In Book I Aurelius thanks those to whom he is indebted. He thanks his grandfather for teaching him to be candid, modest, and even-tempered; his father for teaching him to be humble, calm, and frugal; his mother for teaching him to be generous and non-materialistic; and his teachers who taught him the value of hard work, self-discipline, equanimity, rationality, humor, and tolerance. From his teachers, he also learned to love practical philosophy, instead of metaphysics, logic and the vanity of the Sophists. He also thanks his wife for being affectionate.

    In Book II Aurelius reminds us that each day we will meet some terrible people. But we have faults too, so we shouldn’t be angry with them. For we are all just bits of blood, bones, and breath; our life is fleeting; our bodies will decay. As for death, it is nothing to fear; it can’t hurt us. But what is most important about us is our minds. We shouldn’t let them be slaves to selfish passions, quarrel with fate, or be anxious about the present or afraid of the future. We can’t guarantee fame or fortune, but we can keep our minds calm and free from injury, a state superior to both pleasure and pain. Freedom is the control of our minds.

    In Book III Aurelius tells us to be mindful of little things like cracks in a loaf of bread, the texture of figs and olives, and the expressions of wild animals—even mundane things have charm he says. But we shouldn’t gossip or speculate about what others say or do. Instead, think and talk only about things you would not be ashamed of if they were found out. Think and talk with sincerity and cheerfulness, and there will be a kind of divinity within you. There is nothing more valuable than a mind pursuing truth, justice, temperance, fortitude, rationality and the like. So be resolute in pursuit of the good.

    In Book IV Aurelius tells us that we can always find solitude in our own minds. If our minds are serene, we will find peace and happiness. As for how others view us, we have little control over this. But virtue is still virtue even if it isn’t acknowledged. Remember, our lives are ephemeral, one day we live, the next we are dead. So act virtuous, use your time well, and be cheerful. Then, when you drop from life’s tree, you will drop like a ripe fruit.

    In Book V Aurelius says we should get up each morning and do good work. We should act naturally and contribute to society, unconcerned about the reproach of others. And don’t ask or expect payment or gratitude for doing good deeds. Instead, be satisfied with being like a vine that bears good fruit. Virtue is its own reward.

    In Book V Aurelius disavows revenge—better not to imitate injury. We should do our duty, act righteously and not be disturbed by the rest, for in the vastness of space and time we are insignificant. Think of good things and control your mind.

    In Book VII Aurelius advocates patience and tolerance. Nature works like wax, continually transforming—so be patient. People will speak ill of you no matter what you do, but be tolerant. Evil people try our patience and tolerance, but we can remain happy by controlling our response to them.

    In Book VIII Aurelius argues that being disconnected from humanity is like cutting off one of your own limbs. Instead, live connected to nature and other people. No matter what you encounter maintain a moderate and controlled mind. If you are cursed by others, don’t let it affect you any more than your cursing the spring affects the springtime.

    In Books IX, X, and XI Aurelius argues that we should be moderate, sincere, honest, and calm. If someone reports that you are not virtuous, dispel such notions with your probity, and use humor to disarm the worst people.

    In Books XII Aurelius asks why we love ourselves best, but so often value the opinion of others over our own. This is a mistake. Remember too that the destiny of the greatest and worst of human beings is the same—they all turn to ashes. Do not then be proud, but be humble. Die in serenity. As Aurelius wrote from his tent, far from home and never to return: “Life is warfare and a stranger’s sojourn, and after fame, oblivion.”
     
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  4. Libertad

    Libertad Well-Known Member

    I am almost 49 years now. During our regular PMO use we can forget that our life´s time is finite and think that we have an infinite time to stop with it. I don´t want to get too deep into a thinking of regret over the past, but for all who are still fighting, ones we make us aware and can see the amount of energy and time we put into PMO during years even decades, it can be a good kick in the a.. to think about that for a moment. The past is the past, and thoughts and feelings of regret can keep us stuck and be unmotivating, but a look at the facts without excuses can also be usefull to motivate and push us in the right direction.

    Here is a passage from Markus Aurelius Book 2 Verse 4:

    Remember how long you have been putting this off, how many times you have been given a period of grace by the gods and not used it. It is high time now for you to understand the universe of which you are a part, and the governor of that universe of whom you constitute an emanation: and that there is a limit circumscribed to your time - if you do not use it to clear away your clouds, it will be gone, and you will be gone, and the opportunity will not return.

    I hope I can keep that in mind when the next temptations come.
     
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  5. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    49 is young in my books! :) Maybe time to date someone?
     
  6. Libertad

    Libertad Well-Known Member

    Yes @Saville , it could be time for that too.
    I am not forcing it. At the moment I am more into solving a few things about myself and my believe system, but I am not opposed to it if a good girl appears.
    I am confronted more and more with the fact that PMO was just the part of the ice berg that peaks out of the water but the bigger part and problems lay beneath the obvious unhealthy habbit of PMO and that I have a messed up belief system.
    Journaling (private) daily helps a lot but the things that come up are not easy to let go. I am glad, that at least I have now the motivation and bravery to confront myself with it. Before, PMO was my cowardly way to not deal with what lays beneath and distract myself, but about this function of PMO many here talked about already, the role that PMO plays in escaping reality and uncomfortable facts and hard memories and Traumas.
    I am continuing to go ones a week to a shrink and I am glad that this service is included in the health care system were I live in the moment.
    To sum it up, things did not get easier, but on the other hand, my motivation and energy to finally resolve things and not run from them grew also. I don´t deny that sometimes it feels hopeless like a sisyphus job.
    I found it really fits my situation at the moment. Here is the quote from the myth, maybe others can see themselves and their struggle also in it:

    Camus uses the Greek legend of Sisyphus, who is condemned by the gods for eternity to repeatedly roll a boulder up a hill only to have it roll down again once he got it to the top, as a metaphor for the individual’s persistent struggle against the essential absurdity of life. According to Camus, the first step an individual must take is to accept the fact of this absurdity. If, as for Sisyphus, suicide is not a possible response, the only alternative is to rebel by rejoicing in the act of rolling the boulder up the hill. Camus further argues that with the joyful acceptance of the struggle against defeat, the individual gains definition and identity.

    In conclusion, enough of whining and complaining.:) Finding joy in the daily struggles is the secret then. Ha

    Overall, I hide less, from others and from my inner self and my problems. Small steps towards the resolution of what comes up and no longer running from it.
    All the best to all of you out there.
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2022 at 6:46 PM

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