See them grow up

workinprogressUK

Well-Known Member
As I get further away from dependency on P, I'm coming to question my poor attention span. I assumed that my inability to focus, on work especially, stemmed from my brain being conditioned to prioritise P or fantasy, but I'm no longer so sure. I think like many chronic P addicts, when I was using a lot, I rarely focused on one thing for long. I'd click from photo to photo, and rarely reach the end of a 3-minute video before I'd can it, and start the next. Fantasy was probably the only thing I could hold in focus for any duration. I've only used P once in the last 11 months, back in August, but when I'm at a desk, in front of my laptop, I find it almost impossible to focus on a task mindfully. I can get into a mindful flow when I'm playing sport, at the gym, walking or even gardening. Maybe I need to be physically engaged in order to quieten my mind? Maybe it's a hangover of the association my memory has with computers? Like "WTF are you doing, man? You're at your laptop.... start clicking stuff". Or maybe I was never good at concentrating, which made it pretty easy for me to get hooked on the moving feast of online P? As I'm typing this, I'm more convinced of the link between using the laptop and inability to focus. That should help me find a solution.
 

TheNorman

Active Member
Computer's and the internet are automatically going to get your brain flipping around because...it can. I constantly flip over to check sports scores or the news even in the middle of work...because I can. I have questioned whether or not I have ADD or something similar because even in the midst of other things like reading, walking, building etc. my mind constantly wanders. Maybe P and the scrolling found a more hospitable brain in us because of these scattered tendencies.
 

workinprogressUK

Well-Known Member
No P. No fantasy. No libido either. Life's full. Perhaps a bit too full, to the point where it felt like my feet barely touched the ground this weekend. But using P wasn't a consideration during the weekend. Hoping for a calm week.
 

workinprogressUK

Well-Known Member
Hectic week. Lots of work pressure and long hours, but no cravings for P. I wish sex life with wife was in better shape, but I'm lacking desire and she hasn't shown interest for a long time.
 

workinprogressUK

Well-Known Member
No P. Approaching a year since last binge, allowing for one-hour slip-up back in August. My actions at the start of 2020 put everything I value at risk, so I'm grateful to be functional and reliable now. It could be that COVID-19, hopefully the most universally miserable episode of our generation, was my saviour. It's truly an ill wind that blows nobody any good. Life is better, even if it isn't any happier. I was a slave to a selfish entitlement to happiness for too long and I appreciate that it isn't currently as important as providing security, stability and safety for my family. I think about death far too often at the moment. Not in a suicidal way. I'm just reminded in so many moments of my own mortality and lack of impact. I was tempted earlier today to stray into some grey areas online. Coming here was better. As long as I keep coming here when I'm tempted to go back out there, I'll stay in control.
 

workinprogressUK

Well-Known Member
Early night again last night, and I didn't want to get out of bed again this morning. I'm sleeping a lot and still lacking drive or energy. Worrying trend that I need to address. Generally low emotional response to life. I need to make time for a walk today. Get away from my obligations for a little while and try to refresh. Why am I coming here and typing this? Porn still presents itself as the antidote to my lack of motivation and desire. I know it's a really bad option, though. I'm not going to fall today.
 

workinprogressUK

Well-Known Member
Grateful to be more purposeful, productive and positive today. Could be because I started out by telephoning a bunch of people and having conversations, walking round the garden, rather than just going to my desk and logging on. Didn't get to my desk until 10:30. Must try to do more of that. I know it works for me. Always has. Same neural pathways that used to pull me straight into porn when I didn't want to, will sure as hell be pulling me into newspapers and prevarication. Funny how being conscious that something works doesn't always lead me to consistently do it. The power of the automatic brain, I guess. Soooo.... what to do? I'll commit to finding a way to spend less of my working day looking at my laptop, and more of it speaking to people and moving around.
 

guitar1968

Active Member
Sounds like things are going pretty well for you. That's good. I know it's a struggle and reading your last few posts reminds me of myself. I have days where I have no motivation at all. Other days I get off to a good start and feel better during the day.

I'm just over 3 weeks into this round of no porn. I don't plan on ever going back, but that is something we all want, we just don't always get there. But I, like you, choose to come here now when I get the itch. Maybe I'll be coming back here the rest of my life.
 

Phineas 808

Well-Known Member
Funny how being conscious that something works doesn't always lead me to consistently do it. The power of the automatic brain, I guess. Soooo.... what to do? I'll commit to finding a way to spend less of my working day looking at my laptop, and more of it speaking to people and moving around.

That is such an important component in my own recovery efforts is approaching it first in the context of habit change. If I change my go to patterns of behavior, especially as regarding how we react to various stimuli, then it helps when we're really pressured by life. Changing the habits that surround our habits, is a way I see it, too.

For example, if I'm used to going to my iPhone for distraction throughout the day, I'm not in a good place if due to stress or other 'triggering' stimuli, that it's far easier to go down that road if I'm mindlessly letting habit drive the bus.

If I change that habit, like, I no longer take my phone with me to the restroom in the middle of the night- so, if I find myself doing so, I know something is up... Now, the thought might cross my mind in the night, but I typically catch this as habit- even if innocent.

Your systems are working for you, and you're not allowing mindlessness to drive the bus, and are effectively changing your habits, your responses, and your life.
 

workinprogressUK

Well-Known Member
That is such an important component in my own recovery efforts is approaching it first in the context of habit change. If I change my go to patterns of behavior, especially as regarding how we react to various stimuli, then it helps when we're really pressured by life. Changing the habits that surround our habits, is a way I see it, too.
Very much agree. Habits form powerfully for me, for good and for bad. I think of books like "Thinking Fast & Slow" and the power of the automatic mind and it's easy to see how becoming conscious of our habits can have profound impact on outcomes.

Taking stock:
20 May 2020 was the last time I indulged in a big P binge. It came at the end of a period of acting out. I had a slip-up one morning in August. I still have to resist urges daily to go back to my old life, because a large part of me still sees the old life as more enjoyable than the current one. I can't indulge that need for enjoyment through porn and I must keep investing in other sources of happiness. I could be more assertive in finding time for things I enjoy, and less of a doormat for my family. I also need to continue to grow-up and respect that life can't all be "play time" but nor should it all be guilt and duty. I don't yet see light at the end of my personal tunnel but hopefully that changes.
 

workinprogressUK

Well-Known Member
Back from holiday and checking-in. Still feeling good. I haven't missed this forum as much as I thought I would. Connection ebbs and flows, and my tide has been on the way out for a while. I'm sure I'll still journal occasionally, but I'll be here less often.
 

TheNorman

Active Member
Hey WIP, just dropping in to say "hi" and that I'm proud of you. Keep up the good work. I'm going to post in my own thread too but wanted to make sure I dropped you a line.
 

workinprogressUK

Well-Known Member
Nothing is more important to my recovery than living in the here and now. As soon as I allow my mind to wander into what-if, could have been, wish it were, wish I hadn't, if only...... then I diminish the good things I should appreciate, minimise them.... and open my brain up to fantasy and a reality that isn't mine. It's good to stay mindfully in the here and now.
 

guitar1968

Active Member
Nothing is more important to my recovery than living in the here and now. As soon as I allow my mind to wander into what-if, could have been, wish it were, wish I hadn't, if only...... then I diminish the good things I should appreciate, minimise them.... and open my brain up to fantasy and a reality that isn't mine. It's good to stay mindfully in the here and now.
This is very well said and so true. Not always easy, but it is something we all need to work on and we can get better at it. I've let my mind wonder into some of this lately. I was able to overcome it and not lapse which I was pleased with but it let me know that I'm still very new to my "sobriety". I'm only 60+ days in. I imagine I have much more time to go before I start to feel free of these thoughts.
 
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