Recovery Nation

learningtorun's Recovery Thread
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Author:  Ace [ Wed Nov 28, 2018 10:57 am ]
Post subject:  Re: learningtorun's Recovery Thread

Hands up - I am one of those half committed as L2R has called out..Why is that?
I got stuck on a recap of 'boundaries'a few weeks ago and instead of taking time to work though it I procrastinated... lucky to enjoy healthy food options and also enjoy excercise, how many people sign up to a new gym or excercise program full of commitment and gusto only to falter afzer a few weeks / months and look back in the mirror feeling defeated and a failure.
The truth is continuing ANY healthy lifestyle change is difficult with addiction being more difficult again.
If it was a case of just turn up, complete the lessons and then live the rest of your life free from any compulsion, even with that promise students would not make it all the way ghrough the program or ( like me) be so inconsistent.
Just like diets and excercise programs - if you eat less and excercise more YOU WILL become stronger and lose fat - its a biological fact yet very few do it.
Many join RM or similar sites in desperation and are committed to change theur ways...until things become difficult...
Thanks for the reminder, I have found this site a fantastic resource but I wont achieve anything if i don't commit to it.
I plan on doing that excercise on boundaries when I have a gap tomorrow night ( I am away for the night which brings its own triggers) and commit to using that time productively....

Author:  Ace [ Thu Nov 29, 2018 8:51 am ]
Post subject:  Re: learningtorun's Recovery Thread

Oops! Just realised I posted in that in L2R's thread, apologies.

Author:  learningtorun [ Thu Dec 13, 2018 9:56 am ]
Post subject:  Re: learningtorun's Recovery Thread

I was interested to read Kenzo's comments on the Firm Commitment thread that Anon posted into the Community Forum. In particular there is reference to gaps being left which he felt hindered his recovery at one stage which may not have been altogether accidental. I can certainly relate to this as I know that I have gone through phases where I have tried to kid myself that I need to test my recovery by allowing myself to think about inappropriate behaviour before I then head it off. I know that in fact what I was trying to do was to allow myself to have a little taste of what I used to enjoy. This is just playing with fire and I noted on my second tour of the workshop that CoachJon comments that:
If you are going to lie to yourself — play games with yourself...your recovery is a farce anyway.

Recovery will only occur if it is taken seriously, if dangerous games are not played with it and therefore if there is a full commitment.

Kenzo also wrote in his post:
I know that my sex addiction is over and I am free

Those 11 simple words are the envy of almost everyone on RN. But Kenzo arrived at RN as we all did with his life turned upside down and wanting to change. He made promises to himself in his first lesson and came through the same workshop that is all offered to us. So why has his sex addiction finished whereas most of the rest of us continue to struggle? It is because he realised part way through that he was not doing it properly and in line with the guidance provided in the workshops. That changed and his full commitment took effect and there was then no turning back. That is full commitment and it is what we all need to sign up to if we are also going to succeed. The tools are all here to recovery, we just need to apply ourselves fully and CHOOSE WISELY.

Author:  learningtorun [ Fri Jan 04, 2019 12:15 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: learningtorun's Recovery Thread

I haven't posted for a while and have been putting it off because part of my can't face posting because I am always honest and don't really want to post that I am struggling. I also put pressure on myself to offer hope to others which (completely self-imposed) makes me feel like I need to be seen to live the perfect "recovered" life which I know is ridiculous but is how I see myself. I also don't like mentoring when I am feeling like this as I feel two faced in offer guidance (which I know is suitable guidance) to others when I am not necessarily following it myself.

I have been struggling for a few weeks now and have spent a lot of time trying to work out what the problem is. In some ways I feel like I am back at the beginning again because of how I am acting but I know I have learned too much for that. After a lot of reflection I think I felt that I had got to the stage where I had managed to avoid acting or thinking inappropriately and had achieved the holy grail of only having any desire purely for my wife only to find that she wasn't much interested. That is perhaps oversimplifying it but I also think that is the crux of it. She is not someone who likes to talk about feelings and emotions although I have tried so that door is shut. I have tried talking to her about our sex life (or lack thereof) a while back on a couple of occasions and that was also made clear that it was a conversation that was not welcomed. So I was then faced with a future with much uncertainty, I realise that sex is not the be all and end all but it does have a place and it is scarce. I tried to get myself into a position where I accepted that it may rarely happen if at all and to just take complete focus off of it which to some extent helped. But after a while I felt that I was becoming quite down and almost depressed. The wider issue is that 90% of the time my relationship with my wife is very good, we are like best mates and laugh and joke and get on well. There is 10% where we see things differently and if things are not done as she wishes then there is a very bad reaction to it which on the one hand I realise that I need to stand my ground at times (and experience the stress that goes with that) or (more often than not) I give in and then feel resentful that my wife has complete control over everything which irritates me. Conversations that I have tried to initiate calmly about this are short lived and not really tolerated. Over the Xmas break where I was spending a lot of time around my family I could feel myself getting dragged down and feeling depressed about it all.

I then realised I had started playing mind games with myself and playing trade-offs with myself by saying that I could better accept my lot if I made myself feel better by doing stuff I should be doing. Before I knew it I was finding opportunities for making myself feel better which was drifting back to a world of immediate gratification. It is a bit of a downward spiral as you can see it happening, it makes you feel rubbish then you need to do more of it to make you feel better and it only makes you feel worse.

I have mentally told myself to draw a line and start again countless times over the last couple of weeks only for me to allow it to happen again. So by posting to my thread I am making myself more publicly accountable so that I can't keep shifting the goalposts. The line is now officially draw in the sand again right now and I will commit to resuming healthy behaviour again from this point on.

You think that sex makes you happy because it has given so many pleasurable experiences over the years. But that is not right, sex has brought me excitement, it has not brought me happiness. In fact I would say that sex has brought me misery which is what brought me to RN in the first place. I reached a point last year where I was following all of the guidance on RN where at last I felt happy with myself and proud of myself too. I haven't felt that way for a while now and it is because I have stopped living my life that way again now. I have tried tinkering with the rules and despite me knowing deep down that that will spell disaster I have been stupid enough to think I could do it that way. It doesn't work, it is all or nothing which I why I put that in my sign-off and I get so irritated that I keep avoiding doing just that. Full commitment, what is it going to take for me to get that into my thick skull?

So, things which I need to focus on now so that I can get back on the right track:

1. Healthy masturbation does not work and trying to make mental justifications as to why it does is just a complete waste of time, I am kidding myself
2. If sex does not naturally arise in my relationship then it isn't a big deal, I need to adopt an approach assuming nothing will happen and then anything is a bonus.
3. I went several months on joining RN without masturbating and it was completely fine, there is absolutely no need for it and it was during that spell where I felt happiest. Get back there
4. I have set myself boundaries for a reason, stick to them
5. I will start weekly monitoring again knowing that I have avoided it recently because I knew I was not acting healthily (pathetic!)
6. If I am not comfortable with the 10% relationship issues then I need to find a way of dealing with it so that I do not find myself resenting what is going on around me. I can be assertive in dealing with things rather than letting my frustration build up and lead me to handle those situations badly

I do my weekly monitoring on Fridays so by next Friday I aim to be back on an even keel and will report back honestly and publicly on my thread.

Happy New Year (bah humbug!)

Author:  learningtorun [ Fri Jan 11, 2019 5:18 am ]
Post subject:  Re: learningtorun's Recovery Thread

I wrote this time last week that I would formally draw a new line in the sand and then would record my progress a week later.

It has been a difficult week in many ways but interestingly not in respect of my recovery. It has been incredibly hectic at work and probably as stressful as it gets with something particularly difficult to manage that came out of left field towards the end of the week. I knew that this would be a tough week so had readied myself to expect a lot of emotions to be surfacing and to anticipate a possible reaction to that. But however difficult it got I managed to take everything in my stride. It is the first time in a little while that I was not concerned about reading down my weekly monitoring list this morning and was able to positively answer each item. I have felt good about myself this week and I have not been able to say that for a bit which is satisfying.

Drawing a line in the sand is fine as long as it is taken seriously. I have achieved a week with no problem so another week should not be either. I am not going to be counting but the back of it has been broken and I can see a healthy path lying ahead of me again. Thank goodness for that.

Author:  learningtorun [ Fri Feb 01, 2019 6:50 am ]
Post subject:  Re: learningtorun's Recovery Thread

I took the decision to read Coach Jon's story this week. There are strong warnings around this for those in recovery and I would certainly reinforce that as it would be easy to be triggered by a lot of what is being recounted until you have learned the tools to manage that. All of that said I found it fascinating.

There was so many tales recounted where I felt like I was reading my own story. The thing that particularly interested me is that he had this underlying theme that he knew he was a good person and that often stopped him from recognising himself as an addict. It is like someone who has a drink problem (I did) but does not associate himself with someone who drinks vodka out of a bottle in a brown bag as soon as he wakes up in the morning and therefore concludes that he isn't addicted to drink. (I was and I stopped successfully 2 years ago, same thing with smoking) An SA comes in all shapes and sizes and you don't have to be a serial killer or child abuser to have a problem with sex. A major first step in the process of recovery is being honest with yourself and recognising that you have a problem. Some members may be asking themselves that very question as they embark on the workshop but to be perfectly honest, you have already come to that conclusion by joining RN in the first place. So we need to let go of the stigma attached to the label of SA and just get on with learning and recovering.

The other big thing that I took from the story is that because of there being so many similarities between Coach Jon's story and my own is that he was able to recover fully and therefore there is absolutely no reason why I can not do that same thing myself. It is so easy to put obstacles in your own way (e.g. "I know that others have problems with sex that can be cured by RN but I am different and it has been going on for too much of my life for me to realistically have a chance of recovering" or "I understand the theory of the workshop that addiction or health comes down to making wise rather than unwise choices but deep down I'm not sure if genuinely believe that I have control over that"). We always have the opportunity to choose. Acting out does not just happen to us, we need to actually do something and make a decision to do it for the acting out event to take place. That means that we have made a conscious decision to go against our values on something and at this stage we are only too aware that it is an unhealthy decision. The workshop gives us knowledge so we can no longer play our ignorance cards. Does that make the decision to choose wisely easy? Of course not, it can be really hard at times but having gone through cycles of it being easy and it being hard over the last year or so I have been able to reflect on what was different in each cycle. When it was going well I had all of the key positive thoughts running through my head at all times and was very aware of what was going on around me. When a threat comes I am able to snuff it out almost before it starts which means that there is little or no stress left to manage afterwards. It is a quick habit to form and it leaves you with a warm sense of self respect for how you are now managing your life. When a bad cycle emerges I would say that I have become complacent, I became lazy and did not have all the good stuff flowing through my mind and I did not snuff things out quickly, I stupidly allow the reminder of the feeling of excitement from urges to arrive briefly before I cut it off. That is stupid and dangerous and very quickly throws me off balance and into a downward spiral. I would not allow myself to have a sip of alcohol under any circumstances as I know how dangerous that would be for me. Likewise, I can not allow any urges to develop, however briefly, for the same reason.

I am someone who tends to learn things the hard way at times and my recovery is certainly testament to that. I can not let my guard down, ever, and I must keep all of the positive thoughts and trigger snuffing in place constantly. Recovery can be hard work at times but it is achievable, the tools are all here but it requires total commitment WITH NO EXCEPTIONS and a confidence that I am not different from other SAs and that if Coach Jon can recover then so can I and I will.

Author:  learningtorun [ Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:43 am ]
Post subject:  Re: learningtorun's Recovery Thread

One of the points made in the workshop is that there can at times be a difference comparing the theory of the lessons to how things work in practice and whilst taking on board all of the learning from the workshop it is also important to realise that in practice there are other challenges to take into account too. One of the most important ones is that we are human beings at the end of the day which means that we have emotions (and an SA has more than their fair share of these!) Naturally, then, something that seems quite straight forward one day to us when we are feeling fine can appear far more challenging the next day if we are feeling differently about ourselves.

We all know that emotions are one of the cornerstones of addiction and if we are in a negative mood (e.g. tired, angry, depressed, bored, whatever) then we are far more vulnerable to triggers and we need to be aware of our mood and be more vigilent. Whilst the learning from the workshop is being digested and the approach towards triggers is being automated, I feel that it is important to have proactive plans in place for handing triggers as is outlined in the lessons. Each person will have their own plan to suit their own needs but there is one thing that was mentioned by CoachJon in the workshop which particularly resonated with me. This point was also made in the book that I used to give up smoking a number of years ago. In many ways the principles of both recovery approaches were broadly similar looking back and the key part revolved around expecting to have moments when you will be triggered (e.g. negative mood) and to have a sudden overwhelming desire to go and buy some cigarettes and have one. The book talked about trying to calm yourself down in order to make a rational decision. Some days I found this easy (when I was in a positive mood) and other days I found it difficult as I was constantly being bombarded with urges to have a cigarette. At the height of an urge where you are clearly struggling and you are reaching the point of no return the book (and CoachJon) suggests that you ask yourself "What is the problem, are you actually in physical pain? If so what actually hurts?" I found this very helpful back then and I also apply it now. Thankfully most of the time I can ward off urges almost before they happen as I can sense them but I also have days where I am tired or bored and these become more challenging. When I ask myself what actually hurts it puts things into perspective, I am actually in no pain and I know that if I switch off and think about something else that I will be calm again within a minute or two. I have become so used to this with smoking that I no longer need to use it for that which gives me encouragement that, in due course, the same thing will happen with my sexual addiction. It is like that part of the your brain that wants to throw temptation your way eventually gives up because it realises that it will never be successful.

It is a helpful tool for me and others passing by may also benefit from this tip.

Author:  learningtorun [ Mon Mar 18, 2019 10:14 am ]
Post subject:  Re: learningtorun's Recovery Thread

Over the past few weeks I have been really struggling again. I have become very complacent and have not been undertaking monitoring or reading through my action plans in order to keep things fresh in my memory. It's laziness and that means that when I meet with temptation I am not as prepared as I should be which is a recipe for disaster. I have got quite annoyed with myself because I have been through the workshop twice now and am confident that I understand that theory of what is being taught and it makes perfect sense to me. However, I appear to have a mental block at times when I am trying to turn the theory into practice and my own situation which is nonsense. I can go through spells of weeks and months where things are fine and I can head off potential urges almost immediately with ease and then I will hit a brick wall. I think that the timing is probably related to the strength of appeal of the urge concerned which means that minor urges are fine but larger ones cause me problems. It all points to the groundwork that I have done not being enough and I need to strengthen and reinforce what I am doing.

I have spent the weekend doing a lot of reflection and have come to some realisations. I think that a big part of what has thrown me on many occasions is coming to terms with reaching a healthy stage of recovery which will leave me to focus solely on my wife in terms of intimacy and a healthy sex life. She has a lot of things that she is trying to deal with (health and otherwise) where her interest in sex is limited. I have tried to talk to her about his on two occasions in the recent past and it was made clear to me that these conversations were not welcomed and we should just see how things happen naturally. I decided not to mention it again and we have now gone several months with no sex life. I actually don't blame her for this, I have no doubt that I am at least partly to blame for her lack of interest but I need to find a way of managing this for myself. I have come to the conclusion that I need to make a vow of celibacy to myself. This may sound dramatic but it is the only way that I think I can get my head straight where I have no expectation of anything sexual in my life at all and I think I can cope with that. Dipping in and out of sexual thoughts causes me problems and, much like my issues with alcohol, it is easier for me to prepare for there being nothing rather than occasional things from time to time. A close loving relationship should not be about sex but rather intimacy and I have made a point over the last year or so of being more tactile with my wife but have found this difficult as it makes me realise how much I want to make love to her which then can't happen and throws me off. If you remove sex from the equation then my wife and I get on really well on the whole. I feel that this approach will just take a lot of tension away and will make our relationship easier. I have been mulling over what happens as and when my wife is interested on the odd occasion but I think I will cross that bridge a bit further down the road.

I have been giving a lot of thought to what I want from my life and it is living in my current home with my family. If I can stick to what I have proposed here then I see no reason why that can not be the case for the rest of my life. I have tried to put what I am striving for into a few words and came up with "A clean life; a clear conscience". I know that achieving this will bring me happiness and I will make this phrase core to my action plans and my approach towards recovery. I have replaced this in my sign-off too in order that it is in my face at all times on RN.

I am reworking my action plans and monitoring plans. I will resume daily monitoring for the next couple of weeks and the revert back to weekly and in the meantime will resume reading through the lessons again for a third time. Coach Jon talks about failure being when you give up and turn your back on recovery, I still have a lot of fight left in my and I will overcome this.

Author:  Kenzo [ Sat Mar 23, 2019 7:57 am ]
Post subject:  Re: learningtorun's Recovery Thread

Hello L2R
Over the past few weeks I have been really struggling again.

great that you recognise and then decide "choose" to act upon this fact

I am reworking my action plans and monitoring plans. I will resume daily monitoring for the next couple of weeks and the revert back to weekly and in the meantime will resume reading through the lessons again for a third time. Coach Jon talks about failure being when you give up and turn your back on recovery, I still have a lot of fight left in my and I will overcome this.

:g: :g: :g: :g: :g: :g:

your journey continues, you will succeed because you have chosen to do so, look how far you have come thus far and applaud yourself for doing so

Author:  anon523 [ Tue Aug 06, 2019 8:49 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: learningtorun's Recovery Thread


Next month will make 2 years since you joined RN. My 2 year the following month... we’ve been through a lot my friend.

Although your recent posts discussed struggle...
Coach Jon talks about failure being when you give up and turn your back on recovery, I still have a lot of fight left in my and I will overcome this.

I know this to be true. Should you feel inclined to return, know there are many here standing in solidarity with you no matter what season of life you stand in. Wishing you much health as you live
"A clean life; a clear conscience"

Be well,


Author:  learningtorun [ Mon Sep 09, 2019 11:08 am ]
Post subject:  Re: learningtorun's Recovery Thread

Thanks for the message Anon. I noticed it a day or so after you posted it and you have always had an uncanny sense of knowing when to post to my thread as it is always very timely and much appreciated.

I am well overdue posting an update on where I am with things. In all honesty it has been a difficult few months for me. I have found myself in a very strange situation where on the one hand I have understood the teachings and the principles of it all make sense to me. So from a mentoring perspective I have always found it reasonable straight forward to offer advice and guidance on how other members should approach things. But turning the theory into practice myself has been something different, it shouldn't be for sure, but it is. It suggests that I have not taken on board the learning at all which would be the obvious criticism to make but I am being completely honest in that I don't think it is just that.

The lessons talk at length about recognising an urge happening and then making a point of creating a break and the looking through your values list and choosing a way forward that will satisfy them. At times I have found that I can do this and at others I find the urge so overwhelming that I have struggled to do that. The mind of an addict is that they block out the values in order to get their fix and I have found that at times there is an overwhelming numbing effect where even looking down the list of values it can make little or no difference and the pull towards the urge feels unstoppable - I know it isn't but it feels that way. I remind myself how awful I will feel afterwards if I choose to act out and at times that can have little effect either. If I then act out I get the usual negative feelings of guilt, shame and remorse for having given in to it and then the cycle starts again.

For the avoidance of doubt, I am being completely honest and open here and know that some of the things I am saying fly in the face of the lessons but I will achieve nothing if I am anything other than honest here. It will hopefully help give me more clarity when I read it back and coaches/mentors can become involved if they feel that they have some thoughts to offer me.

I feel overwhelmed by the magnitude of it all and where I ended up getting to is to try and break things down in to various stages because I had got to a point of feeling like I was completely out of control and at real risk of doing something really stupid. Clearly the first line of attack needs to be managing the bigger stuff. None of this appears in the lessons and it may well just be all in my head but in my repeated attempts to try and find a way forward after a huge amount of self-analysis I found that urges vary wildly depending on my state of arousal. Let's say I had had sex on a particular day then for the next day or so it would take more to get aroused than it would if a period of a couple of weeks had passed. So whilst I know that I could (and have) gone for long periods with the right mindset, when it goes off track it can be a far more powerful urge when it happens after a longer period. Trying to manage a stronger urge I have just found really difficult. So I decided to try something different a little while back (which for the benefit of any passing traffic to my thread is clearly not in the lessons so should not be tried) which was to have a two pronged attack. The first line of defence is clearly to use the lessons and have the right state of mind at all times but as an emergency back-up if needed when I found myself experiencing an urge that I found almost overwhelmingly powerful I would masturbate and then it would take the urge away. Part of me feels like a complete failure for doing this because I sense that it shows I am clearly missing something fundamental from the lessons if I can not manage urges in the ways that CoachJon has taught but the other part of me feels like I have taken a sensible course of action in order to avoid acting out. Immediately afterwards the urge is gone and I can get back on track. Interestingly, one of my boundaries is not doing anything that I could not tell my wife about and she told me a while back that she thought it was unnatural not to masturbate and so taking this approach would arguably not violate my boundaries - however you see this, certainly masturbating to relieve an urge is far better than giving into the urge and acting out. So that is kind of where I am at the moment, I am now not acting out which is a big positive although I appear to have found a somewhat unconventional way of achieving it. It may be that as time goes on, knowing I have the emergency get out there means that I can remain calm and actually not need to do that and so I am better able to remain relaxed and cope. It has given me time to digest all of these things knowing that am in a better situation than I had been for some time.

I am not stupid though and I know that there is also clearly a danger of the risk of slippage with this in that a "when I occasionally need it" could quickly make me feel like I have a free pass to "do it whenever it want it" in which case it might all fall apart again and I am very mindful of that. But for now it feels like it has given me a bit of stability back and I feel a lot less stressed.

I am sure that I have given the coaches/mentors a field day to get stuck into there so will leave it there for now. I have missed being here though and have thought about the site quite often. I sense that having it back in my mind by visiting more regularly again would do me good as it will help keep everything more in the forefront of my mind which is what I plan to do. As Anon states, I am nearly at my second anniversary on RN now and would feel so much better reaching that milestone whilst feeling that I have a plan in place that works for me. We will see.

Author:  learningtorun [ Thu Sep 12, 2019 4:03 am ]
Post subject:  Re: learningtorun's Recovery Thread

I feel like a lot of things are coming together at the moment. My new approach towards urge control seems to be having some substance as I can sense that it is making me feel less stressed about it all knowing I have a get out option if I end up struggling in a given situation. As a result of that I am feeling more relaxed and have felt little in the way of urges at all. That was my aim which is making me feel more comfortable that it was not just an excuse to masturbate (as I have not felt he need to) all the time which would take me down a road I do not want to go.

Another thought that I pondered on this morning is about excitement. I have always been someone that has got excited about things from a very early age. Whilst I completely understand and appreciate that healthy decision making comes from making values based rather than emotions based decisions, there is a fine line between enjoying healthy and unhealthy excitement. Excitement is a very dangerous thing if it gets out of hand but I would be turning myself into someone I am not if I tried to deny myself any excitement at all. So another area I have been exploring over the last few months is to find ways of finding healthy excitement so that I still get this but without it leading to dangerous situations. There is a programme on TV that shows professional and amateur artists drawing celebrities over a 4 hour period and then the judges choose the best ones at the end and move them through to the next round. The competition ends with a final and a winner who gets a £10k commission from an art gallery to do a portrait of someone else famous. The finalists and the winner are seriously talented and generally paint (although some of the people in the earlier rounds use pencil or coloured pencils too). I love watching the drawings/paintings slowly build up as I loved art at school when I did it a hundred years ago but I never drew portraits as they looked too difficult. So a few months ago I decided to give it a go and I did a pencil drawing of a celebrity which took about 15 hours (in a number of different sessions) and it turns out I have a bit of a talent for it. Like all things, the more research you do (what was life like before YouTube?!) and the more you practice and learn you can see development and growth and you improve. I have now done about 10 portraits of celebrities and family and it has got to the point where I finish them and look at them and pinch myself that it is me that has drawn them. I don't record this here to blow smoke up myself but rather to say that it is something that I love doing and I am passionate about. It fills my mind and I can't wat until my next lunch break at work where I can go into our board room my with my sandwich lunch and lose myself in the drawing. Whereas sex and fantasy would have previously fill most of my waking hours on and off over the last 40 years or so, the drawing now does. I got to a point where I felt that the pencil style could not go much further and I have now moved to coloured pencils and am two third of the way through drawing a my first celebrity using that medium and whilst I am learning how to mix colours and blend them and finding that some things work and other don't, it is also turning out quite well. My long term aim is to move from that to paint but that is down the line. Anyway, the whole point of mentioning this is not to bore people by suggesting that I have turned into some raging hippie but that I have landed on something which I love, it fills my mind, I find it exciting but it is HEALTHY. I know that if I shut off all excitement in my life then I would avoid acting out but it would be supressing the real me and it would not be sustainable over the longer term. I need to have some sort of excitement in my life but in a healthy way and my creative side is a way of me being able to release it.

I feel good about myself at the moment, more than I have for a very long time, and it is mainly due to the fact that I feel I have found a way of managing my life a lot better and moving my focus from unhealthy to healthy pursuits. In some ways it is a displacement of sorts but if that does not represent moving from one unhealthy pursuit to another unhealthy one as I have in the past then I can't see that this is anything other than a good thing. It feels right (with my mentoring hat on and trying to be objective when I self-analyse) and although it is relatively early days I think that it is a step in the right direction. I feel like I am getting some sort of excitement fix but in ways that are satisfying all of my personal boundaries.

Author:  learningtorun [ Thu Sep 19, 2019 8:36 am ]
Post subject:  Re: learningtorun's Recovery Thread

I was chatting to someone yesterday about how bored I feel at work at the moment. I have lots to do but i just struggle to summon the energy to get properly stuck into it. I have an enviable skill where i can kick up several gears and get through a lot of work in a relatively short period of time which means that i can drift a bit in between. I am paid very well for what I do and to have similar pay elsewhere would involve taking on heart attack inducing stress levels which i am not prepared to do. I have worked out i have around 6 years left until i can retire and have no plans to change jobs between now and then.

What interested me yesterday afternoon is what happened when i went through another episode of "I really can't be bothered doing what i am supposed to be doing today" and i had this feeling that i would give anything to be able to just go into our board room with my drawing stuff and lose myself in drawing for the afternoon (previous post refers!) The thought made me reflect on how my low mood made me automatically reach for something else to improve my mental state. That thought is the crux of the workshop here and it was not lost of me that i would ordinarily look to pursue some inappropriate thought which could lead to acting out just to give me some adrenaline to pull me out of my boredom. I then realised how often i can feel bored at work and therefore how often i would act out.

Whilst the boredom at work thing is something i need to manage (I usually create new projects to work on when i get like that which will give me some interest so it tends to be a phase sort of thing) i am taking great comfort that i realise that sex is not the only option for me to pursue when i want to change my emotional state. There are lots of healthy ways of improving your mental state and to be fair they do not need to involve a huge shot of adrenaline, a healthy pursuit (e.g. Drawing or spending 10 minutes reading something interesting but healthy online before heading back to the job at hand) can give you enough to get you back on an even keel which means that you then avoid the whole roller-coastering of excitement -> guilt -> excitement -> shame, etc. It is also easy to dismiss CoachJon's comments about recognising your own progress. As an addict it is very easy to have feelings of low moral worth but when you achieve something you really should recognise it in yourself, however small, as it could be the important first building block to help you get out of the hole. Am I fully recovered? No. Have i got this thing sussed? No. But what i have done is to break the cycle that has been frustrating me for some time. I am enjoying the stability of not having the highs and lows and being able to look at myself in the mirror and not be appalled at what i see. It is far easier to see the right way forward when you are thinking clearly without the distractions that are only to easy to jump to. The journey is a long one but you have to ensure that you have the basics set in order to be confident that you are headed in the direction that you want to go.

Author:  Kenzo [ Fri Sep 20, 2019 5:52 am ]
Post subject:  Re: learningtorun's Recovery Thread

Hi L2R
and welcome back, your presence, viewpoints in mentoring and course continuation of your journey is appreciated by all herein
I would masturbate and then it would take the urge away.

OK your choice, your wife is correct masturbation is normal, unless that is it becomes compulsive or IMO is used as a coping device

you say MB takes the urge away
But does it?
Does it take the urge away or simply put it on hold
perhaps addressing what brought the urge into being is or should be the focus

Coping is not living
dealing with the issues that we all have provides us with the means and opportunity to at least try for that fulfilment of our lives

Am I saying that for an addict to MB is wrong
NO, we all make choices and we then need to accept responsibility for those choices

do not take this as a criticism, simply a differing viewpoint
maybe we are both right, or hopefully not, wrong

As said welcome back

Author:  learningtorun [ Fri Sep 20, 2019 10:38 am ]
Post subject:  Re: learningtorun's Recovery Thread

Hi Kenzo, thanks for stopping by, i have missed you my friend. As always, you have made some pertinent and thought provoking points. I already sense that they attack the heart of where i think the issue is but rather than replying now i will chew over this over the course of the weekend and will provide a more considered response on Monday.

It feels good to be back, I've missed the place and makes me feel like i have renewed energy and focus!

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