A fresh start for a mountain goat ⛰️

the_mountain_goat

Active Member
94 ME | 4 PORN
CURRENT STREAK : 2

November 🟩 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩
December 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟨 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩
January 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟦 🟩🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟩
February πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟦 🟨 🟩 🟩

Doing OK although the drop in energy was intense! I think it was caused both by the relapse and the lack of sleep. I am feeling a bit better today.

I think I do need to find a moment and motivation to do something Β« sporty Β» in the midst of my work weekend trip. For sure running tomorrow morning, and perhaps some form of workout today (end of the day) if I have the time. I’ll try. I know this can help me with my energy levels.

The sentimental issue with the person I’m seeing hasn’t helped either. But I’m navigating through that slowly. I think it’s the distance and the fact that it bursted while I’m gone that is most difficult. Or perhaps not… Perhaps it’s helping us see things differently. I think I need to focus on here, on my trip, which will help me step back on this issue. I think it means not messaging her, or less, in the coming days.

I want to try and be present (and energetic) as much as I can here. I might use some of these in my next few posts here...

If I had to narrow my biggest trigger down to one word, what would it be and why?
  • OK, it will be three words: boredom, loneliness and 'emptiness'.
  • I am someone who does a lot of things, active things like sports, and now less active too (like, nicely, just going to a coffee shop to read a book). When I find myself without anything to do, it surprises me still. I guess the void of it scares me. And the opportunity it presents is weirdly exciting. That's when the trigger hits!
  • I am also a very social person, I care about being liked and about what people think of me. Friends are super important in my life. I nurture my friendships. But then, if I'm alone, with nothing to do... That's when there's a chance of relapsing too.
When I look back at my life, what events can I trace back to that directly impacted substance use habits?
  • They are short periods of time. I was never "deep" into PMO for weeks and weeks.
Interestingly, a couple of days after the relapse, I'm getting the feeling that I'm not losing all of the progress that I harnessed in my last two streaks. As written above, in the last 94 days, I've only had 4 days of relapse. Yes, there are some brain-related stuff happening with PMO, but here, there are a lot of psychological things too. Confidence is a big one for me. And the current relationship helped so much in that regard, getting that confidence back, realizing that I'm a nice sexual partner. I'm present. I'm fun. I'm generous. I'm listening. I'm (trying) to be communicative about one I and the other might like. So, the goal here is to remind myself of all of these great things that happened, and not let the narrative of "a relapse destroys everything" win.
 

MapleSyrup

Member
Really sorry to hear this, mountain goat :(

But I just want to encourage you that your progress isn't over, and you don't have to re-start from scratch.

4 relapses in 96 days is pretty stellar if you ask me, compared to probably 90% of guys who are more like 80 PMO in 96 days.

Keep up your healthy habits as much as possible, keep the positive momentum going and get right back on track.
 

the_mountain_goat

Active Member
96 ME | 4 PORN
CURRENT STREAK : 4

November 🟩 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩
December 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟨 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩
January 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟩
February πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟦 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩

Thanks @MapleSyrup for the positive feedback!

Energy is back! Did abs on Saturday, went running yesterday, and a bike ride today. It has helped a lot! The relapse's effects were intense, but then it was also re-assuring to se how quickly I recovered from it.

Also, I'm pretty sure that if I were to have sex in the coming days, it would work like it did before the relapse, as I said, 96 days PMO free vs 4 days of relapse.

What was my biggest barrier to lasting sobriety, last time I tried to break my addiction?

  • Idle time, boredom compounded with unaddressed stress
  • Solution: well, first, breathe!
 

the_mountain_goat

Active Member
98 ME | 5 PORN
CURRENT STREAK : 0

November 🟩 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩
December 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟨 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩
January 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟩
February πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟦 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟨

And... relapse again. Same reason as last time (idle, boredom...).

With a hint of self-sabotage; meaning I'm indirectly saboting a potential romantic-sexual relationship I'm at the beginning of, by "ruining the potential sex" we may have because of a relapse.

How might I break this cycle?
  • By realizing that relapsing didn't solve my 'boredom' issue, it made it worse, time was not fulfilling.
  • As soon as I start thinking about edging to non-P but stimulating content, I'm starting a relapse. I must "stop right there".
  • By realizing it disconnects me from reality, while I actually enjoy reality a lot!
  • By remembering how horrible I felt last Saturday!
So, now. Let's quit it. Things to look forward to:
  • Yoga w/ friend
  • Dinner w/ friends
  • Day @ climbing gym Friday w/ friends
  • Skiing this weekend
  • Starting to read a new novel
There are big things ahead. I'm going to have apartment soon. Lots of things to do for this... I gotta get my shit together, and do this well!
 

the_mountain_goat

Active Member
102 ME | 6 PORN
CURRENT STREAK : 4

November 🟩 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩
December 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟨 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩
January 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟩
February πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟦 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟨 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩

Feeling better. Relapsed the day following the last relapse. I had very compulsive urges, that were sort of striking me without a warning.

Now I'm feeling better. I had a lovely weekend, despite some very stressful personal stuff that I managed to handle.

Found joy in some beautiful outdoor adventures, one of them which took me out of my comfort zone a lot. Felt good!

I'm so glad that a new cozy coffee shop opened here, where I'll be able to work from. Avoid spending time on my own when I feel like a relapse could happen.

Also, very glad I'm still enjoying my "Dry February", it's been 21 days (started end of January) without alcohol!
 

the_mountain_goat

Active Member
106 ME | 6 PORN
CURRENT STREAK : 8

November 🟩 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩
December 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟨 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩
January 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟩
February πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟦 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟨 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩

Doing good despite injuring my wrist in a bike accident, which is kind of annoying but OK! It seems to be healing slowly though.

Happy that I'm though the first week post relapse. This is always the most difficult.

One key trigger I've noticed in the last relapse is a sense of "life uncertainty" that I find hard to handle.

Nice things to look forward to in the coming days. Hopefully will manage to get on skis. Work is moving ahead nicely. A friend is coming over to visit...
 

the_mountain_goat

Active Member
107 ME | 6 PORN
CURRENT STREAK : 9

November 🟩 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩
December 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟨 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩
January 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟩
February πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟦 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟨 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩

9 days! Yay.

Wrist injury not fully improving but not getting worse.

Decided to stay home and not go outdoors today. Completed many small annoying home tasks that I kept on procrastinating. Gave me a nice feeling of satisfaction.

I had a trigger at some point today. What I did: box breathing for a minute or two. Acknowledged the trigger. And went on with my day.

It's hard for me stay still these days. I think it's the recent relapse and the fear of emptiness (and, how it might lead to a relapse).
 

the_mountain_goat

Active Member
108 ME | 7 PORN
CURRENT STREAK : 0

November 🟩 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩
December 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟨 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩
January 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟦 🟩🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟩
February πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟦 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟨 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟨

And I relapsed. I must say I’m quite disappointed again and it’s one of these moments when I’m starting to lose hope.
 

the_mountain_goat

Active Member
108 ME | 7 PORN
CURRENT STREAK : 0

November 🟩 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩
December 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟨 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩
January 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟦 🟩🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟦 🟩 🟩 🟩
February πŸŸͺ πŸŸͺ 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟦 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟨 🟨 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟩 🟨 🟨

Well at least I did "better" than last time: 10 days without PMO, while last time it was 5. I can keep on doing better.

I've chatted with friends this morning and thought a lot about what triggered all of this...
  • Emptiness and the fear of emptiness - and boredom and loneliness. I'm a bit stressed and hyperactive. I think emptiness scares me. So porn gives me a sense that this void will be filled.
  • Stress / permanent tension. It's related to what I was saying up there. I'm always under tension. Even in my body, I'm aware of it (I think most of my joint pains are aggravated because I'm always tense). So there's this belief that relapsing offers me a form of release from stress.
  • The false belief that my love and sex life are doomed to failure - so there's a form of unconscious self-sabotage in relapse, I guess!
  • Bad weather and the impossibility of enjoying life outside.
  • Wrist injury which prevented me from doing many things and ended up being quite depressing
I find it REALLY hard to find good alternatives. Things that will feel at least a bit attractive to counter my triggers.

Just putting out there my earlier notes about the EasyPeasy book...
  • I'm not giving up anything by stopping using P, on the other hand, I'm gaining a lot! I will not "mope" about it!
  • This is not a doom-inducing decision, I'm not trying to climb Everest by stopping using P, it's an 'easy' and joy inducing decision (and, it actually is, I'm smiling as I'm writing this and whenever I've been thinking about it lately)
  • P won't help me with boredom & stress - it would actually create those and I'm very much happier without them in my life!
  • No peak or substitutes as it would "re-ignite" the process of wanting P (the dopamine rush associated with looking for P, and looking for novelty etc.) ("the thrill is in seeking, not killing")
  • (At least for me) there is no such thing as "clean porn" - experience has proven it - even the slightest peak at a "subtle" Instagram picture feeds the little "addicted monster" in me who will then ask for more!
  1. I must face my fears (without P) around (1) loneliness / emptiness and (2) romantic / sexual relationships
  2. Self-confidence needs to be boosted via recognising that I'm... (1) a good-looking guy and (2) a guy with a nice personality
 
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