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PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2017 3:14 pm 
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# 53 - Making the decision

# A - Masturbation would be a violation of my values in the situation where I would use it as a substitute for intimacy with my wife, to use as "stress relief" or to use a a means to fantasize. These are not healthy choices for me.

Masturbation might be a healthy means for me if my spouse had health issues and could not have sex and we talked about it and she experienced with me. If she has passed away, and I was alone, I would consider masturbation for my sexual needs.

# B - other value conflicts would be honesty, not expressing emotions, not being real, not being self-respectful, not expressing my needs and wants, not sharing emotions with my wife, not being sexual with my wife and not modeling good morals.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 16, 2017 3:25 pm 
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#54 Assessing the consequences

Values based decisions - negative consequences:

1. Quit Facebook because it violated my values of being real and self-respect. However I had used FB as a go to website to get a quick escape in the moment from stress/urges. I initially felt more isolated and along and felt sad/lonely from lack of "attention." I had to sit with my anxiety and focus on myself.

2. declining to take bad potential clients - this was/has been healthy for my self esteem and business but I have felt negative emotions about lack of business growth, financial stresss.

Emotional decision that had positive consequences.

in December 2016 I made the choice to join Recovery Nation and work on my addiction. I initially joined because my spouse wanted me too. The positive consequences were that I experienced immediate emotional relief by making my wife relieved that I was starting to heal even though I was not initially doing that for myself. Ultimately I made the choice to be in RN for myself not because my wife wanted me to but because it was what I wanted.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 08, 2017 1:16 pm 
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Lesson # 55 - I completed this exercise


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 08, 2017 1:17 pm 
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Lesson # 56 - I completed this exercise


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 08, 2017 1:17 pm 
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Lesson # 56 - I completed this exercise


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 08, 2017 1:21 pm 
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Lesson # 57 - I have started on this exercise and will update as I learn and improve my self awareness.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 08, 2017 1:44 pm 
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Lesson # 58 - five rituals that I will likely face:

1. objectifying others
2. scanning environment
3. Fantasy/unreal thoughts
4. looking up/searching for unnecessary information about people
5. hiding from old memories and experiences (shame)

Objectification:

When I become aware that I am doing the ritual, I will stop objectifying and reflect on what emotions I am/have been experiencing. I will revisit my prioritized values and reflect on what is going on in my life that caused me to do this behavior. I will talk to my spouse. I anticipate that I will feel guilt/shame for behavior but once I make commitment to get it out of my head I will feel proud and motivated to improving. the other emotions that I will experience are anxiety, dread, regret, helplessness. Mind games that I will pay are rationalizing, excusing myself. Trying to justify the experience and minimize its significance. Every experience is a chance to learn and improve my mental health.

Scanning environment:

When I become aware that I am doing the ritual, I will top scanning and looking around. I will review my prioritized values. Emotionally I will feel some shame and guilt for not living by my values and doing a ritual that specifically hurts my spouse. I will have regret and resolve to be better. I will be energized to do better. The mind games that I will play is that I will excuse myself that I was not intending to look around and didn't see anything. I know the difference between searching for what I need and what is unhealthy. I excuse myself by saying that I am "just testing."

Surfacing old memories/experiences

This ritual is different from what I have previously considered. My ritual is to hide/avoid considering I objectified/fantasized/sexualized/romanticised people from my past, whether they are family/ friends, neighbors, coworkers, clients, or other walks of life. the immediate action that I will take is to ask myself what memories/past thoughts am I running from. is there shame that I need to let go? I will write it down. Have I owned/resolved my issues with this person? the feeling that I will have are of being stupid, guilt/shame, relief from acknowledging the issue, pride in my recovery. the mind games that I will play is that I will tell myself this person is in my past and doesn't matter. I will minimize the old thoughts/memories. I will avoid dealing with the situation.

Fantasy:

as soon as I become aware of this ritual I will call myself out on it. I will acknowledge this image or conversation as unreal. I will tell myself that I am feeling uncomfortable in some way and need to address. The anticipated emotions are feeling stupid, regret, shame, guilt, relief. Likely mind games are dismissing as not significant information, calling it an idea and not fantasy and not talking about it.

looking up information on people:

I will acknowledge to myself and my spouse that I played this game. I will make a choice to learn from this behavior. emotions that I will feel are guilt/shame, pride in talking about it, relief to disclose and anxiety about keeping secret. games that I play are that this information was necessary, doesn't hurt anyone or that I need this - none of this is true.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 16, 2017 4:42 pm 
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Lesson 60 - Preventing Slips/Relapse

1. Prior to a triggering event
a. parties
b. going to dinner @ restaurant
c. social outing/sports events
d. business offices that I visit
e. going on a trip, e.g. airport
f. meetings with clients/customers

2. Action plans for how I will experience potential triggers differently
a. minimize alcohol use
b. do not be alone without spouse - I value spending time with her
c. go to smaller events with less stress
d. review with spouse where we are going and what we want from place/event
e. sit/stand where I am not overlooking entire world
f. change marketing approach for business to reduce unnecessary contacts
g. hold hands with spouse more
h. express my anxiety/fears to spouse more


Prior to spontaneous triggering events
1. Seeing random people
2. Unexpected pop in visits
3. someone walking down the street

Urges
1. Urge for a fantasy
2. urge for masturbation
3. urges for objectifying/scanning


this is a work in progress....


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 16, 2017 4:44 pm 
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Lesson 61 - I reviewed this lesson and have been incorporating into my everyday life.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 16, 2017 4:54 pm 
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Lesson 64 - Transitioning to Health

I understand the concepts related to recovery. I still struggle to be honest, playing games and still get urges.

Addiction is not really part of me, but something that I developed during my lifetime. Compulsive rituals have been hugage for me. I see very clearly how I anticipated, engage and felt ashamed by them. I will not return to these compulsive rituals.

If I went back to porn I would be deeply unhappy with myself. I am deeply opposed to that garbage given how much damage it has done to me. I still objectify in my head and will work on managing my emotions that drive me to that ritual in my head. I will not seek external stimulation, e.g. porn.

I do still spend a lot of time fighting urges and much less time acting out with objectifying/scanning. I need to spend much more of my time on healthy recovery activities and I finally have build a good daily plan for doing that.

My day to day enjoyment of life is not enough - I want more. I don't feel hypersexual at all. I don't think of myself that way.

I need to use my value system everyday and I realize that the values that I drafted for myself were overly complicated. I keep losing sight of that.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 16, 2017 5:00 pm 
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Lesson 65 - life after addiction

a. my goal is to genuinely experience a variety of emotions every day and manage them in a natural, healthy way; engage in honest self assessment and communication, focus on living by my values. I want to experience life as a wonderful opportunity to learn and enjoy life with family, support/partner with my spouse and support my kids. I am committed to learning about myself and growing as a man.

b. my visions are not identical at all. My initial vision was lofty - I am more focused on being real and healthy at this point.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 16, 2017 5:17 pm 
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Lesson 66 Recovery triggers vs. relapse triggers

Regarding my triggers in early recovery - I was very narrow in my understanding of triggers. I told myself that there were explicit people, things, places. I was not really looking at my emotional state and how that drivers my compulsive need to find unhealthy ways to cope. I became afraid of the explicit triggers that I had identified and tried to avoid people/places. But I learned that is ridiculous.

Triggers now - how I see triggers now is that anything can really be a "trigger," depending on my emotional state. I have to focus on identifying difficult/subtle emotions that bother me and use a healthy way to cope before I use an unhealthy coping behavior. I know there is a difference between what is people and media that are actually sexualized and what I perceive in my brain. I will focus on calling myself out on small emotions and stepping away from situations when I am overwhelmed.

5 potential triggers

1. woman making advance at me/flirt with me - - this is pretty unlikely and one that never was part of my compulsive rituals

2. person from past sought me out and contacted me. I have liked attention and used fantasy for a good part of my life. If I were to receive inappropriate attention from anyone other that my spouse I would talk to my wife about it. If the unexpected contact brought back old memories and made me feel shame/regrets and the need or fake attention in my brain I would talk about it. I would use the opportunity to be vulnerable and build intimacy with my wife.

3. Seeing nudity/sexuality in media. i.e. not searching but saw in movie. My mind is keen to retain imagery even though I would acknowledge to myself that I will use boundaries to stop further viewing and remind myself that I didn't see out the movie scens and they are not part of my values. I will see the imagery as part of the mainstream sexualized media and will discuss/share my feelings with my wife.

4. "triggers" for old memories - I will use triggers, to correct false perceptions from the past. I will focus on understanding my emotional state when I first saw person and how I used fantasy in the past to cope. I will correct any delusional thinking and remind myself that person has no power over me and I have power to heal myself through honesty and living in reality.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 16, 2017 5:17 pm 
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Joined: Sun Dec 11, 2016 3:34 pm
Posts: 81
Lesson 66 Recovery triggers vs. relapse triggers

Regarding my triggers in early recovery - I was very narrow in my understanding of triggers. I told myself that there were explicit people, things, places. I was not really looking at my emotional state and how that drivers my compulsive need to find unhealthy ways to cope. I became afraid of the explicit triggers that I had identified and tried to avoid people/places. But I learned that is ridiculous.

Triggers now - how I see triggers now is that anything can really be a "trigger," depending on my emotional state. I have to focus on identifying difficult/subtle emotions that bother me and use a healthy way to cope before I use an unhealthy coping behavior. I know there is a difference between what is people and media that are actually sexualized and what I perceive in my brain. I will focus on calling myself out on small emotions and stepping away from situations when I am overwhelmed.

5 potential triggers

1. woman making advance at me/flirt with me - - this is pretty unlikely and one that never was part of my compulsive rituals

2. person from past sought me out and contacted me. I have liked attention and used fantasy for a good part of my life. If I were to receive inappropriate attention from anyone other that my spouse I would talk to my wife about it. If the unexpected contact brought back old memories and made me feel shame/regrets and the need or fake attention in my brain I would talk about it. I would use the opportunity to be vulnerable and build intimacy with my wife.

3. Seeing nudity/sexuality in media. i.e. not searching but saw in movie. My mind is keen to retain imagery even though I would acknowledge to myself that I will use boundaries to stop further viewing and remind myself that I didn't see out the movie scens and they are not part of my values. I will see the imagery as part of the mainstream sexualized media and will discuss/share my feelings with my wife.

4. "triggers" for old memories - I will use triggers, to correct false perceptions from the past. I will focus on understanding my emotional state when I first saw person and how I used fantasy in the past to cope. I will correct any delusional thinking and remind myself that person has no power over me and I have power to heal myself through honesty and living in reality.


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