onesea's journey

Discussion in 'Ages 40+' started by onesea, May 14, 2015.

  1. onesea

    onesea Active Member

    Hey Newman. I have to remember to check my own journal because I get on too often and just go to yours or someone elses.

    It is pretty funny to think we celebrate a good internet connection. It helps me be on here but it is the device that really made my issues worse starting 20 years ago. I laugh at that. But I'm on here right now and not surfing porn. Ha.

    The reason I wrote about how I relish noticing that moment when my mind says it is okay to take part in pmo is that I'm really into mindfullness right now. And I also realize that as we struggle that that moment is right when we go from handling, understand and learning about our pmo back to partaking in the destructive behaviors that brought us here. I'm trying to understand that moment and look at what happens with my emotions, my thinking and my behaviors that gets allows my mind to switch. What is going on in my brain? What brain chemistry is it? What emotion am I feeling? What am I thinking about? What do I do about it? How does my physical body feel (sick, less sleep, hungry, in pan, etc)? Just trying to understand that moment. I have had a lot of those moments recently and I have been able to ask myself enough questions to remove myself. I have not been perfect by any means but it is helping.

    I'll get on here when I can.
    Billy B. likes this.
  2. Newman8888

    Newman8888 The wound is the place where the Light enters you

    I like what you wrote, Onesea. Any time, we're able to put some space or distance between our impulse to act out and noticing what's happening at the moment in terms of what we're thinking and feeling, we're no longer being on automatic pilot, repeating the same behavior.

    I'm analyzing less these days and trying more to establish new habits, like exercising regularly and meditating daily. I avoid starting up my PC unless I have a specific reason to do so. I've started to journal here on an almost daily basis. I lost focus and my priorities. I want to stay motivated. As I wrote before, this addiction is far more difficult to beat than I initially thought when I started here.

    I'm always happy to see you hear. I'm glad that you're doing well, and that you're finding a way that works for you. Newman.
    Billy B. likes this.
  3. Billy B.

    Billy B. PMO is NOT an option!

    Great to see the mindfulness workin' for ya, Onesea.
  4. onesea

    onesea Active Member

    I may be getting better at the mindfullness but it is really hard at times. There are times where I'm doing anything in life from dealing the pmo to driving to whatever and I become mindful of bad behavior, negative thoughts, and such. At those times it hurts because it feels so raw to see the process and how I fail at something or act negatively. I can even be mindfull of being on autopilot and noticing that hurts. But it has it's benefits. Practice is what I need.

    Glad to see you back on here so much. I may soon make the same effort.

  5. Billy B.

    Billy B. PMO is NOT an option!

    You know you can practice mindfulness to help you notice and appreciate 'positive' things, too, don'tcha? It's about bringing ourselves fully and as much as possible into the moment, even the pleasant moments (let's not forget them!)

    The way I understand it, one important aspect of mindfulness is about working towards not labelling things as good or bad, just observing them. In Cognitive Behavioural Therapy I learned to weigh up the evidence for and against the truthfulness of negative thoughts and to see them in a more balanced way, which was helpful. But in the mindfulness-based Acceptance and Commitment Training... part of it, anyway (it's quite broad) we don't concern our selves as to whether a thought or feeling is good/bad or true/false, we practice simply observing in an unbiased way, as might an anthropologist or some-such. The question we ask is "Is it helpful?", if so, no problem. But if acting on that thought or feeling would not be helpful, we can practice holding it lightly and choose to act in line with our goals and values, regardless. That's the theory, as I understand it. Takes time, though, to get better at it, as we're finding out! Progress is not linear and we're not going to get it 'right' 100% of the time, ever. And that's okay, too.

    Blah, blah, blah!

    You seem a bit flat, mate (I know that one!). I send you posi-vibes.

    Keep coming back (as they say in the 12-step groups).
    Last edited: May 4, 2017
    Newman8888 likes this.
  6. Newman8888

    Newman8888 The wound is the place where the Light enters you

    Onesea, I think I know what you mean. While mindfulness is a useful practice, it's not a cure all, or remedy that will spare us from negativity, anger, etc.

    I wonder sometimes if it even can become a tool that makes us too detached from ourselves. We go to much into a "watcher mode" instead of feeling what needs to be felt. At some point, I wonder if we have to feel and digest whatever we're seeking to avoid through addiction, distraction, etc.

    I don't know if anyone here on this forum has some good answers, based on their own direct experience.

    The last couple of weeks have been uncharacteristically slow here at work. No projects, everything seems to be in a wait and hold mode. Instead of stress, I have had hours of boredom, which is rare for me. Even boredom is difficult, I have noticed. The mind is restless. It wonders and begins looking for distraction and relief. I'm watching the mind but the watching doesn't relieve the restlessness and agitation. It seems to be the human condition.

    Take care.
    Libertad likes this.
  7. Billy B.

    Billy B. PMO is NOT an option!

    I think that practicing mindfulness allows us to hold the emotions lightly, so that they're not so overwhelming and we don't feel like we have to avoid feeling them. I'm not saying I've got it nailed, by any means, but I think it must be possible to feel unpleasant emotions, to allow them to be, to let them take their course, while not overly identifying with them. It's why in mindfulness we try to avoid the use of emotive or qualitative language in describing experience. Pleasant, unpleasant, or neutral, is the way my teacher describes it. In Buddhist philosophy, which mindfulness springs from, they take great pains to differentiate between non-attachment and detachment. The latter cuts us off from experience but the former allows us to experience things fully, but without be consumed by them. Or something.

    I hope that helps!
    Last edited: May 4, 2017
  8. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    This rawness is the gift of sobriety. It is us becoming ourselves. It is rebirth. Our travel from the womb to the outer world was not an easy one. We went from the comfort of our pond to blinding light. We were squeezed through a vice like canal and then had our tether to the insides cut. But, we separated from this safety into something so much more incredible. Would any of us really want to climb back inside our mothers?
    Billy B. and Newman8888 like this.
  9. Newman8888

    Newman8888 The wound is the place where the Light enters you

    Beautifully put, Saville.
  10. Newman8888

    Newman8888 The wound is the place where the Light enters you

    Thanks for clarifying the difference between non-attachment and detachment, Billy. Very helpful.

    In the past, I used to get overwhelmed by my emotions, ranging from tears of beauty as though my heart wanted to implode to outright rage. After I began practicing meditation and mindfulness, I've noticed that I am far less reactive.

    A book that I just finished reading prescribes an antidote to addiction as actually consciously noticing what's going on in the mind and body while acting out our addiction. This method has been used successfully to quit smoking.

    What I have seen from my own experience is that when I go from being in a unconscious, unaware, dream-like fog while staring at arousing images, I usually stop when I finally get to the point of truly seeing what I am doing. This is when I wake up from the trance. Of course, I don't advocate doing this with P addiction because it requires a level of commitment to staying conscious and aware that I don't think I possess.
    Billy B. likes this.
  11. Billy B.

    Billy B. PMO is NOT an option!

    What's this book called? It sounds interesting and reminds me of a friend who quit smoking by, as she described it "Saying 'yes' to it". She would only smoke if she felt the need for nicotine (by being present she was able to notice if her desire was merely out of habit) and when she smoked she did so ultra-consciously, as you say, staying present with what was going on in her mind and body giving herself permission to enjoy it and putting the cigarette out when she had enough (rather than finishing it simply out of habit). Can't say it would work for everyone, but you know... perhaps illustrative of the concept.

    And it's a fascinating concept. Like the student who went to his master. "Master", he said "I find that my masturbation is getting in the way of my meditation practice. Would it be okay if I masturbate while I meditate?". "Get out of here, you fool!" replied the master, aghast "and come back when you're serious about committing to the practice!". As he was leaving, the student paused, turned, and asked "What about if I meditate while I'm masturbating...?"

    Ah, hah! :p
  12. Billy B.

    Billy B. PMO is NOT an option!

    Someone once recommended placing a mirror so that you can see yrself in the act, or recording it on video. I never did it but just the idea, knowing what a depraved and desperate degenerate I would look like, was often enough to keep me from slipping, at times. Ugly!
    Newman8888 likes this.
  13. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    Often when PMO'ing I would catch a glimpse of my double chins reflected off the screen and it was sobering; not sobering enough, but the pathetic nature of what I was doing was dimly recognized.
    Billy B. likes this.
  14. Newman8888

    Newman8888 The wound is the place where the Light enters you

    Billy, the book's title is "The Craving mind: from cigarettes to smartphones to love - why we get hooked and how we can break bad habits." Author's name is Judson Brewer.

    My interest in the nature of desire, cravings drew me to read this book. I think you would enjoy it.
  15. Billy B.

    Billy B. PMO is NOT an option!

    Thanks, man. I'll see if our library system has it.
  16. Billy B.

    Billy B. PMO is NOT an option!

    How's tricks, Onesea?
  17. onesea

    onesea Active Member

    Billy - that is a better way of describing what mindfulness is doing for me. Yes it gets difficult at times to take emotions this lightly but I see your point.

    And Newman I would agree on meditation. The more I practice it the less reactive I am. That lasts for hours or a day depending on the things going on in my life. I try to meditate every day because of that.

    Things are good right now. I've actually wanted to be on here to talk more about that but yes my internet connection was down for 2 days. Hard to imagine the people I live with don't care much to fix it. Can't wait to get my own connection back, but it will be used for better things.

    Billy B. likes this.
  18. Newman8888

    Newman8888 The wound is the place where the Light enters you

    Onesea, I am glad to hear that things are good, as you put it. Boredom is a form of agitation and restlessness. I don't experience this emotion so much mainly due to my fairly busy work schedule.

    However, I had an unusual 2 week period at work some time ago when there was almost nothing to do other than waiting for work to come in. I enjoyed the peace and quiet, slower tempo for a couple of days before the boredom started taking hold. I started battling a lot of urges, which I don't normally have time to entertain while at work. So thinking back at that situation, I can easily imagine what can come up for you when you're by yourself and don't have a job to go to or things that you have to do.

    How do you deal with this situation? Without some sort of structure, it's easy for me to lose focus, get less vigilant, pay less attention.

    Good to hear from you my friend.
  19. onesea

    onesea Active Member

    Boredom to me is a real problem. Not working means it is something I face everyday. I'm getting better every week staying busy so I'm learning.

    I've had too many jobs where I just sat around waiting on other people and such. Being bored when you are supposed to be busy is the worst. Sounds like it worse for you after the initial relief of having less to do. I'm dealing with the situation by doing everything to make life easier for my wife, working on the house we just sold, working on the one to come, exercising, cooking, learning things, looking for work and volunteering. I've had to create a structure for most of my week just so I can stay busy enough and not get myself into trouble.

    Have a good holiday if I miss you the next few days.
    Billy B. and Saville like this.
  20. Newman8888

    Newman8888 The wound is the place where the Light enters you

    Onesea, I think it would be very difficult for me to not have a job to go to in the mornings. Basically, just being by myself at home on the few weekends when my wife is at work is very challenging. I think this has a lot to do with the fact that this was the time when I had the opportunity to act out and often did. Being at home by myself is associated with P.

    I'm really impressed that you're finding a way to stay focused, setting up a structure while you're wife is at work. Not having a structure, plan, getting bored, spacing out, wasting time is all fodder for the addiction machine.

    Overall, I am heartened to see that you're managing your life as well as you do, being disciplined, staying away from the immediate gratification so easily available on the internet.

    I'm glad to see you here. I assume that you have already moved into your new home.

    Enjoy the Memorial Day weekend.

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