Escape, sorry for your recent struggles.
Pick yourself up, and go again. You have all the tools you need inside of you to say goodbye to P/MO and even alcohol.
Remember you said recently:
I started with 3 rules (Mistakes management, fantasies management, embrace the suck) and it produced results right away.
These rules were simple and it gave you a good run early on. But I noticed 4 things that tripped you up:
1. Going back to alcohol. when at first you were tackling both issues. You successfully drank 2x without going back to porn, but as you say above, the 3rd time led you back...
2. Attempting to offset urges by MO. This worked the first time, probably because you had begun to desensitize your brain to your habits. But by the next 2x
, it led to porn fantasy... You said recently that hard mode
was the way to go...
3. Having a white-knuckled approach, which is relying too much on will-power, which produces in us a 'dry drunk' mentality, where we wish we were using, and are just hanging on to our sobriety for dear life, but are not making actual changes.
4. Depression. Not taking stock of our emotional states, and how they can be warning us of being in a vulnerable or 'high-risk' place, where we might reach for our former coping methods of P/MO.
I think, along with your simple rules, mindfulness will help you to stay true to your goals and give you better urge-management. And if I can modify an important rule you list above, embrace the suck, to instead say this:
Observe the Suck
This is the same idea, but without the embracing. Say urges come, instead of 'running through them like Rambo', just observe them nonjudgmentally. Recognize the urges, the rapid heart rate, the shallow breathing, the feelings of anxiety and lapse-anticipation, not as enemies to combat or 'run through', but as simply thought/feelings.
These by themselves can't make you do jack! But, if you fight them, or feed them, of course they will eventually 'kick your ass'- even if you mangage to say No for X-amount of days.
Yes, you're right, there is the 'suck-factor', we do have to learn to be uncomfortable with urges, to endure- like a cold shower. But instead of embracing the suck, just observe it- like it's happening to someone else. And just mindfully breathe through the urges until they pass.
It is difficult, especially in the beginning. But mindfulness can help you even early on, and maybe that's a good time to learn it, to dismiss urges instead of the white-knuckled approach.
Don't give up on yourself, all these things are learning experiences if you let them be. You got what it takes for a serious reboot/recovery, but your approach is worth tweeking.
Don't worry about all the rest, if you say 'No' to this crap, long enough, your anxiety issue will take care of itself, and you'll confidently find the love of your life.