My strategy is to avoid cue's, urges, cravings from happening


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Hello everyone,

My post and reboot is not finished yet but I decided with thanks to two people giving their feedback to make a treat just in case it could help someone. I will update when I got time. Feel free to post your questions and ideas, thank you.

Side note: I am single and I suffer from premature ejaculation. My dopamine gets fired easily with almost anything not even related to porn.  Healing myself was almost impossible until now. For single guys like me, I recommend to stay single until your brain is healed. Because this will shorten your recovery.

For people in romantic relationships, this strategy might work or not. I want to help these people too but I can't analyze it and test it without my own experience.
Therefore still in progress...

Today is day 73. No PMO, no MO, no edging, no sexual thoughts, no peeking, no sexual substitutes. I realized something. Why in the world was I able to reach this day and keep continuing but I wasn't able to reach 22 days in the last 4 years or so?

I did something wrong. You see, if I just focus on my goals and try to forget about porn, there is a chance I lose my guard. This happened to me all the time till I realized I have to observe myself throughout the day. One mistake can ruin all my progress.

But if I focus only on fighting this addiction with porn blockers, cold showers, It is like taking  medicine. It does not heal the root underlying cause of the problem. Therefore I keep failing.

For all these years my conclusion is, ''urges'' cannot be defeated. Once I have an urge and suppress it, it will get me back in a couple of hours, days or even in my dreams. Urges will lead to relapses eventually. I would say the point of no return. I might be wrong though.

However I have noticed, if I can just avoid urges, I can go for a pretty long time.

But to avoid urges, I need to know my cues, which causes triggers and triggers leads to urges. The best method for me is to stop Cue's from happening in the first place. So there will be no urges that causes my brain energy to fight with.

I think it works like this in the brain: Cue > trigger > dopamine release (mini orgasm) > urge > MO/Porn > relapse > chaser effect

After the first dopamine release, this is the point of no return I believe and urges follow up to relapse.

The chain must be broken to prevent a relapse I believe and what I found out is this:

Between the trigger and the dopamine release there is the mind, our pre-frontal cortex.

We have the power to make a choice at that very moment with awareness but the timing is limited for a porn addict. The easiest way is to stop cue's from happening and there will be no urges to fight with.

The cycle of a porn addicts brain I think looks something like this:

Cue > trigger > dopamine release (mini orgasm) > urge > MO/Porn > relapse > chaser effect

However I figured out 2 learned habits can be added in the cycle of a porn addicts brain

On guard yes/no > Cue > trigger > mind willpower yes/no  > dopamine release (mini orgasm) > urge > MO/Porn > relapse > chaser effect

Stage 1 On guard: anticipate the situation and prevent cue's from happening

Stage 2 Mind willpower: Second chance (timing is important!)  Stop thoughts within 1/2 to 1  seconds right away.

Stage 3 Dopamine release: the point of no return (too late)

The cycle of a porn addiction can be broken down at stage 1 and at stage 2 at best.

If he is on guard, the cycle stops right there: On guard yes > ....

No triggers, no urges, no relapses and no chaser effect.

If he is not on guard he get a second change with his willpower: On guard no > Cue > trigger > mind willpower yes  > ....

If he ignores this warning, a relapse is inevitable.

To succeed in this, a person needs to only learn two habits.

(I am not finished writing explaining the 3 stages in detail)

Repeat, (sorry I was typing this on different days but I still have to put it together in one document)

Here is a quick summary concept how the cycle of an addiction in the brain works according to me:

Cue > trigger >  dopamine release (mini orgasm) > urge > MO/Porn > relapse > chaser effect

This cycle continues like domino pieces falling from beginning to end non stop.

However what I found out is that there is a way to break the chain before the point of no return (having urges).

Human awareness it is! '' you have power over you mind, not on outside events. Knowing this will give you strength'' Marcus Aurelius.

You know the moment you think you shouldn't go watch porn but you can't help do it anyway. That moment of awareness is what I am talking about that is capable of stopping urges and relapses from happening. It is able to stop an erection or bring an erection down when a person have to like social meetings. The bad news, you got only 1/2 to 2 seconds to change your mind to stop it. But with habits, this can be learned like I did.

I realized something. There are to types of love I learned from a spiritual person.
There is the lower vibration love, this consist of lust and crime which we see in movies and there is the true higher vibration love. This is love you have for your parents, your friends, your pets. When you pet your cat or dog, you can feel great and happy right? But it doesn't mean I want to fuck my dog. I am talking about this kind of love which respects women and don't see them as sexual objects. This real thing brought me the awareness of the pre-frontal cortex.
We can look at images and women without getting turned on in just a short period. We can really stop the dopamine getting released in the brain I think but the timing must be perfect! And this can only be done by learning two habits I am about to teach you in just a moment.

The cycle will look like this with added awareness:

On guard yes/no > Cue > trigger > mind willpower 1/2 - 2 seconds yes/no  > dopamine release (mini orgasm) > urge > MO/Porn > relapse > chaser effect

This cycle can only be broken down in two occasions before the point of no return. In the beginning ''On guard yes'' and for a second chance ''mind willpower yes''
The first dopamine release is the point of no return I believe which will lead to having strong urges.

The second chance mind willpower is tricky. I experienced I still have awareness to not do it but I can only stop urges from happening within 1/2 to 1 second. In other words, to stop the dopamine getting released in the brain.
Over time a porn addict will increase his willpower time period more. But until then, we only have a couple of seconds to stop it.

If you deal with strong urges, it means you already did something like watching porn, masturbating and orgasm, peeking or thinking related to sexual or you saw an image or a pretty lady or you are searching for sexual substitute.
We need to avoid all of this as Williams explained in his treat. We need to avoid the dopamine release in the brain related to sexual stimulants and this can be anything not related to porn.

I am afraid this is the only way to get a long streak to eventually heal the brain.
Also be aware, once you relapse, the second time trying to reach a longer streak will be much harder! Therefore relapses must be avoided during rebooting.

I'd say the only way to heal the brain for a rebooter, is to finish the 90 days clean with no dopamine release, with no mistakes in between!

Dopamine release can be anything according to Williams treat. All substitutes the mind is searching instead off porn, should be avoided. This can be anything.
I absolutely recommend, a must to read his treat

This might be impossible, but it isn't. Once we learn 2 habits, we can go pretty easy after the initial stage.

Unfortunate, I don't have a hack to reach the first 3 weeks. I believe the first 3 weeks are the most difficult to reach, because the withdrawal symtoms are the strongest! However, when a rebooter reach 14 days and is about to reach day 21, he must be very very careful. Relapse is waiting for him around the corner. He must fight this and do whatever it takes to reach day 21 and day 22. This is going to be very painful, but it must happen. After day 22, It will be easier to reach day 30.

I feel like rebooting is like taking anti-biotics. 14 days but when I stop at day 10, the anti-biotic does not work anymore. I need a stronger one next. That is why when a rebooter does reach day 21 but relapse on day 22, it can take him weeks to months to get back on track. It will get much more difficult.

Not finished yet below, I am working on it and thinking about how the brain works

When a person does relapse I believe the cycle of porn addiction will look like this:

trigger > dopamine release (mini orgasm) > urge > relapse > chaser effect

Because of the last porn session, thoughts and feelings are still present in the mind so the cycle skips the '' on guard part'' and the ''cue '' part and goes straight to trigger and also skips the mind willpower (weakened because of the last relapse session)

To stop this cycle is much more difficult! Now you have to use all your willpower to stop urges turning into a relapse! Basically it's like watching your favorite porn video but you decide not to orgasm and turn the video off. Good luck with that!

''Suffer the pain of discipline or suffer the pain of regret.'' Therefore relapses should be avoided at all cost. Never ever let your guard down!

As I mentioned above, urges cannot be defeated in a full reboot I am sure. However, all you have right now is your willlpower and motivation to stop it. You have power over your mind according to Marcus Aurelius.
I don't have a hack. You will have to suffer and fight the first three days the old fashioned way. Brutally!

Without '' on guard'' ''Cue'' '' mind willpower 2 sec '' the addiction cycle could look like this:

.... > .... > trigger > ....  > dopamine release (mini orgasm) > urge > MO/Porn > relapse > chaser effect

With added willpower

.... > .... > trigger > ....  > dopamine release (mini orgasm) > urge > willpower yes/no > MO/Porn > relapse > chaser effect

As you can see, I added the willpower after urges, because that is what is happening I think. We got our urges straight from our last porn session and using our willpower is therefore placed after ''urge''

You will have to use strong willpower for a couple of days until you get back to being able on guard with having cues and normal triggers again. For me it took me 4 to 6 weeks every time I relapsed after I reached 14 days or more. That is how difficult it is to get out of this cycle.

How a relapse happen:

These cue's and triggers have nothing to do being horny and sexual:

1. Stress, impaired decision making, information overload, not aware body needs food ( no feeling of hunger)
2. Negative emotions, anger, fear, anxiety, resentment, boredom, shame, guilt, disappointments, regret, mistake, dispute, failure, feeling tired (insomnia)

We want to escape feeling bad by using PMO. It became a habit.

These cue's and triggers are related to sexual energy: craving for more dopamine after the initial dopamine hit.
3. After sex
4. By surprise
5. Getting aroused, loneliness
6. Chaser effect

Habit 1: be on guard all the time, avoid cue's and triggers by anticipating the situation

Tip: use the app habitual and start a journal every time you relapse. Write down the cue's. Learn from it and avoid next time. Habitual is a spreadsheet and counter in one. I like it when I can add notes on days I relapse.

Habit 2: stop your sexual thoughts on time 2 second rule

If you learn this habit, you can sit behind a computer without using porn blockers. I want you to create a strong foundation so you will never have to worry when sitting behind a pc without blockers. I used to relapse when visiting my parents. Porn blockers will only increase urges and triggers. That one last cookie is must more tempting to eat than having cookies in abundance. The result is having the urge to bypass the filter.

The 2 second rule explained:

The moment every time I become aware of a sexual image or video popping in  my mind, I can see it in my mind, hear it or feel it, snap right out of it! Don't give it a second thought. Do not get fooled. One thought will lead to another until relapse. You only got 1/2 to 2 seconds till your dopamine  get fired and giving you a mini orgasm.

My technique is a followed. I find myself thinking about something and it turned bad. I see the image, got aware and then I visualize the image got erased like a fog of mist wipes the image away until I see a blank image.

It doesn't matter what kind of a way. The point is to shift your attention away from the image by replacing the thoughts with something else.  Use what works for you and make it your own, make it fun. Don't worry about mistakes.


Porn addiction causes impaired decision making. It is a damage to the pre frontal cortex. This means rational thoughts goes down, memory goes down but stress goes up. I figured this out thank to watching a video from Gabe about impaired decision making. When I searched what exactly does impaired decision making means, I came across a science article. See the link below.

An important cue is stress. Or stress is the trigger!

Now backed up with science I finally understood what is happening in my brain. I knew stress was bad but I didn't know stress was the cause of creating an impulse to watch porn.

Our addiction has made the brain seek to porn, every time we experience a form of stress. For me I think 9 out of 10 times, it wasn't being horny, it was having stress. Therefore my stage 1, anticipate the situation is to avoid the stress from happening and so I can avoid getting triggered.

It is very difficult to stop triggers and urges from happening for an addict when the body is flooded with stress hormones. The body wants to release the stress by ejaculation. A body mechanism to protect itself I think.

To be continued....

I recommend reading these post from Hablablos! It contains wisdom, experience, philosophy, habits, insights, a must read!



I think you've come to the right realization. You understand the mechanism well, that's why you have so many days without relapse. It's true, porn is the button we push to get a dopamine release. The solution is simple: Don't push the button, don't give yourself a dopamine high. What happens to us is that we experience craving for porn and this creates arousal or the urges as people call it. As addicts we can't stop the craving but we must make an effort to stop the hypersexualized thoughts immediately. If you fuck with them, you're done. Not only they increase the craving beyond control but they actually do what we want to avoid: They give us a crazy dopamine high. Of course number one thing to do is avoiding actually watching porn and substitutes but porn doesn't stop only there. We have porn stored in our mind and we can "watch it" there and give ourselves a dopamine high. This porn from our head must not be engaged. As I looked at other addictions, they succeeded only when they eliminated the drug completely so why porn addiction should be different? Drugs create a chemical reaction in the brain and no drugs means no chemical reaction. It's the same with porn: No porn means no dopamine. Of course we still get some dopamine release because when porn pops up in our head, it's inevitable but don't swim in it for the next 30 minutes. I would say it like this: Don't give yourself a deliberate, conscious dopamine high.


Active Member
Hello escapeandnevercomeback,

Thank you for your message. The beginning is the hardest part of the reboot. High cravings and urges because of our last session, we still can feel it and see it in our minds. The first three days and three weeks are hard. However with every day, hour and minute we suppress these thoughts and feelings, we get a little stronger.

I observed my thoughts throughout the day in the first three weeks. From the moment I wake up to the moment I go to sleep. I was always prepared just in case one bad thought slips in unnoticed. This was my way to prevent cravings and urges. When I did had one, I suppressed it by observing myself even more and I forgot to mention I replace cue's with something else.

Without me realizing it, I created a habit. I can now easily erase images in my mind and look away when seeing women walking down the street. Because just in case.

At the moment I don't have any cravings. It could be flatline. I am okay with that because it helps me in my reboot.

Take care.


Stopping myself from engaging with porn flashbacks and fantasies has definitely helped me in the past. When I give the dopamine a chance to go wild, I torture myself and I almost always end up edging. And then it's game over.
Hey zaraki888,

Thanks for letting me know this, it really helps, I?m on day18 now. Your post makes me realize that I am already using the strongest ?anti-biotics? I have, don?t get a second chance, I have to be very careful as you said. I agree that the guard on stage is very important, we don?t always have the chance to keep our willpower strong all the time. Day 18 is the furthest I reached in the past years time, I used several porn block software and also let my dad to help me, it?s hard to talk to him about this topic but I really suffered from this. I would share your post with my friends in this forum. Take care.


Active Member
escapeandnevercomeback said:
Stopping myself from engaging with porn flashbacks and fantasies has definitely helped me in the past. When I give the dopamine a chance to go wild, I torture myself and I almost always end up edging. And then it's game over.

Yes, I have a rule to be strict with myself. I know I will relapse so I have to stop my thoughts on time and avoid triggers. When I was younger, I always thought the only way to heal myself from addiction, was to watch some P and then after stop myself on time. I was so wrong back then and I never was able to stop myself.

By the way, me and my accountable partner are paying each other money every time one of us relapse. I didn't mention it yet in the treat.
It is actually thank to him that I am able to reach so many days I could only dream about.
I don't know exactly why but somehow it works. Because when we are tempted, our rational thinking goes down and we tell ourselves stories why we should give in, why we should just enjoy, why one peek doesn't hurt. At those moments I use to give in and thinking I really want this! After the relapse I felt so disappointed in myself. Why did I let this happen again?

So I changed my rule paying to my accountable partner from just PMO to more strictly. This was the reason I eventually found out about the porn cycle and how to stop it on time. Also learning about stress was a big one for me.



Active Member
pengyty121 said:
Hey zaraki888,

Thanks for letting me know this, it really helps, I?m on day18 now. Your post makes me realize that I am already using the strongest ?anti-biotics? I have, don?t get a second chance, I have to be very careful as you said. I agree that the guard on stage is very important, we don?t always have the chance to keep our willpower strong all the time. Day 18 is the furthest I reached in the past years time, I used several porn block software and also let my dad to help me, it?s hard to talk to him about this topic but I really suffered from this. I would share your post with my friends in this forum. Take care.

Hello pengyty121,

I am glad I could help. Thank you for your message. Yes absolutely as you wrote '' using the strongest ''anti-bionics''. We have this power over our mind.

Great you managed to reach day 18! Well done! Keep going. In the third week just at the end it could get a little more difficult.

I experienced, the more days a rebooter manage to reach, the easier it is going to be. Almost effortless which was for me on day 45. However the bad news is, he may also be at his most vulnerable. His vulnerable increases with each day I think. When the brain gets re-wired but experience a relapse (dopamine high), not only do we have to reset our counters, the second or third try will be more difficult this time. Therefore the best chance we have is to go all the way, if possible with no mistakes in between. I don't like to use the word ''mistake''. There are no mistakes in life, only experience. I just tell this to myself every time so I will be strict and not lose my guard.

I understand you. On this day my parents still don't know about my habit. I only told it to my sister.

Thanks for sharing.