Closer to your 100, Nick! Excited to read of your deep reflections!
Congratulations Nick. You have been an inspiration. I'm over 100 days myself, but I feel they were quite a struggle at times and not perfect. No PMO, but 5 MO's and a few times looking a little too long at some porn that I've come across on Twitter. I'm hoping my next 100 go smoother and get even smoother from there.So yesterday was my day 100 ... and although I would definitely say there were bumps in the road on the journey, overall I am feeling a sense of accomplishment and gratitude (as well as a recognition that there is still work to be done to get me to where I really want to be).
As I step back and really think about it, I don't want to minimize how much farther I have come than at any time since I was in my mid-teens and this crazy rollercoaster lifestyle began. So full stop, that really is amazing. And along the way (perhaps most importantly) as I have strung together long intervals of "non-PMO" living, I have had the chance to really experience first hand what this new lifestyle can feel like ... when I wake up in the morning and the first thought I have is not one of shame and exhaustion but of pride and an eagerness to start my day. And at times throughout the day and evening when I would normally just give in to the old patterns without a second thought ... I am now able to walk away (sometimes very easily and sometimes kicking and screaming after a long fought mental tug of war). More than anything this gives me hope and an assurance that there really is a path to victory that I have never really believed could be there for me.
I'll end this check-in here for now but I will reflect further in a subsequent note on what I feel was most instrumental in helping me stay the course these past 100 days.
'Till then - stay strong all.
You could be writing about my journey. So much the same and the furthest I've come and I'm finally feeling like I've got this beat. I'm not done by any means, but I feel like I have a handle on it. This was a truly great post. I'm sure your new 40 day challenge will be great. I'm now on a 90 day challenge to go full Hard Mode. I finally feel like I can do it and I'm already 20+ days in.Back on the grid after stepping away for a few weeks ... and it feels good to be back. I have been thinking about the next chapter in my journey to full recovery and so thought I would dump down some thoughts and frame how I need to move forward based on my learnings to date.
So as I step back and reflect on my last 167 days since I started here at Reboot Nation a few things stand out:
- having this forum as a regular outlet where I could honestly share my struggles, successes, and generally connect with others and their
- first and foremost, I have to acknowledge that these last 5 1/2 months represent the farthest (by far) that I have ever been able to get in my 40ish year struggle with porn addiction (by no means perfect but a step change improvement)- so my Reboot Nation journey has provided me with genuine hope for a lasting and complete recovery as well as the practical "tools" to know how to fix myself
- so what made the difference for me this time around (vs. all of my previous attempts / failures that never got me farther than 1 week of freedom) ... here's what tops the list for me:
journey was huge (it gave me the accountability group I have always known was needed but I was always too ashamed / too prideful to
reach out for).
- getting educated on YBOP to fully understand (for the first time) what is actually happening in my head, how to change what has been
done, and what to expect emotionally / physically as I go through the recovery process.
- having my perspective totally reframed as to what recovery really means for me (from the EasyPeasy Method) ... I realized that recovery
did not have to be a long, drawn out, and painful process of having to "give up" something hugely valuable ... instead it is a minute by
minute personal choice (that I have 100% control over) to fully realize the joy of what living without porn can mean for me and the
tragedy of what continuing to live with porn would be like - and then acting in ways that take me 1 step forward.
- introducing a manageable number of small, healthy changes in my daily habits that collectively worked to distance me from my old
triggers that might draw me back into the downward vicious cycle of porn use / shame / rinse and repeat.
- so as I now look forward, I feel the next chapter for me is to take all that I have learned to date - both the good stuff from above but also the many missteps that I still had on my last 5 1/2 months ... and pour myself into a new 40 day challenge where I can hopefully continue to whittle away at my lingering bad habits and further engrain the good stuff. I'm looking forward to the next ascent (to use a climbing metaphor) that begins today ... day 1! Stay strong all.
Are you setting a timer or alarm to remind you to breathe? I often forget myself and taking 5 minutes to focus, breathe and reset every few hours really helps me, but sometimes I look up and the day is gone and I totally forgot to do it!Thanks Jerry T! I appreciate your thoughts as well as your ongoing journal (so similar to mine).
Day 5 today and yesterday was a mixed bag as I tried to dial in more consistently mini "time out" session in my day to step back, breathe, and be present and grounded. I must admit I found it difficult at times not to get consumed by whatever I was doing and just completely forget about the "level set" breathing exercise that has been to this point an adhoc activity. I will play with this today and work in some "planned" timeouts and see how this feels.
That's great Nick. I may do the exact same thing. Look at my schedule and then drop in mindfulness times throughout the day.Hey Guitar, yes setting an alarm - that's exactly what I have just started to do (because otherwise I too just get carried away in the moment). I set 6 of them yesterday for various times of the day and I found it really did help me to step out of the moment and rebalance. I am going to let this approach play out over the next few days and see how this settles in but so far I have found this to be helpful.
When you feel urges to visit porn sites or masturbate, just catch yourself and take a few minutes to breathe deeply and remove yourself from the urge. If you are aware that it is a behavior you don't want, taking a few moments when you feel the urge to just sit peaceful and breathe, you may not feel the urge any longer.I’ve been into mindfulness practice since the eighty‘s. I don’t know how to use it to help in this situation? Im completely judgmental about porn, but that mentality doesn’t sync with mindfulness.
That's fantastic Nick. It really does help in so many ways. I end up feeling more relaxed at the end of the day. That's a win right there. Not to mention all the other benefits.Yes Guitar you described it well - that's exactly how I am trying to use the practice of mindfulness as well. It is simply a skill that I am trying to master (by breathing and letting go of being overly attached either to my emotions or thinking in the moment) that allows me to reset and get back in balance whenever I feel stress or triggers that may lead me into my old non-productive behaviors.
I am finding that not only does it provide me with a chance to detach and reset in the moment (breaking the old engrained habit), but I also get a secondary benefit in just feeling better about myself because I have demonstrated to me that I actually do have control over my actions and have been able to step up to the challenge take back control of my life.
So yesterday, I set alarms for 7 random times in the day and used that as a trigger to practice mindfulness in the moment - with the hope that this will build the mental muscle to do the same whenever adhoc potential porn triggering events happen throughout the day. Despite a very busy day at work yesterday, I actually found these 7 mini breaks to be quite refreshing and enjoyable. The experiment continues today. Talk soon.