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 Post subject: Re: Ace's Recovery Forum
PostPosted: Fri Feb 15, 2019 4:21 am 
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Location: Ireland
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5. During the consultation notice and feel this pull between wanting to create a fantasy about how she is ex mad and would love to be ravished by me and how much I too would enjoy the affair and the opposite of being true to myself, acting maturly and with compassion with this young woman - she is here for my advice not for a quickie!! Emotions: Fantasy, Excitement, Adventure mixed with Fear of being caught, dissapointment and despair of the strength of my sexualised thoughts, Fear of what teh future may hold if I continue these fantasies.


I suppose what I learn forom a above is what the last number of weeks have shown me...that the further I go into the fantasy = the higher teh likelihood that I will engage in some type of sexualised behaviour (porn , mb etc.) Also it has shown me that unlike I may have previously thought that I would have these 'pulls to fantasy - of will I wont I and then I would either act out or I would'nt - I now realise that they were constant - every few hours and even though I may not have 'acted out' I was still feeding them making my day longer and more difficult.
Bulding better boundaries (by including the development of fantasy as a boundary) has meant that I have been more likely to cut those thoughts off at the root before they strengthen.
An example of that may have been last night. I was away from home in a hotel. Traditionally a very difficult struggle ensues.
Lat night not so much, not that the thoughts of acting out (mb. porn, viewing/ contacting escorts sites) did'nt come into my mind, they did, as usual BUT the difference may have been their intensity, due to that the craving was'nt as strong and I managed another successful night away on my own.
The lesson I am taking from that is that the more I feed a thought during teh day (even if I don't act on it) the more it builds up and will be looking for a release that evening/ a few days/ weeks later.
In other words the more I feed the wrong wolf, even though it may not attack me then, I am strengthening it for its attack in the future.
I need to view those dopamine producing short fantasies (seeing an attarctive woman walk by in lycra etc. etc. the more I am losing control of my rational thought an actions.

Quote:
6. Manage to bring myself to reality and provide the advice to the young lady in teh manner she would have expected and deserved, even gained her confidence when she volunteered to send her Mother in to see me who has a similar query. Emotions: relief that I had been able to take control of my leacherous thoughts and present a professional compassionate approach, Hope that maybe I can control these fantasies and my core values will rise to the fore.


The emotion I take from this is RELIEF - The fact that as I put it "being able to take control of my leacherous thoughts" and then feeling a sense of great relief that I did'nt develop those thoughts and act on them confirms that they are damaging me. draining my energy.
Clearly if I am getting a sense of relief then those thoughts rather than harmless, dopamine filled distractions should be recognised as DANGEROUS, UNHELPFUL and DESTROYING.
In the past I have been very guilty of minimising - "everyone does it' "its not liuka eACTUALLY acting out" "I need it" "I'm in control and can stop whenever I want"

_________________
"Don't judge each day by the Harvest that you reap but by the seeds that you plant"
"If you do not succeed, make sure it is not because you did'nt try hard enough"


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 Post subject: Re: Ace's Recovery Forum
PostPosted: Fri Feb 22, 2019 8:45 am 
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Location: Ireland
Quote:
D. Consider the element identified just prior to 'the point of no return'. This is the element that you will want to isolate and use as your primary trigger for breaking a compulsive urge. Eventually, you can isolate multiple elements, and thus create multiple points where a compulsive event can be effectively stopped, but for now we will focus solely on this one element.


The example I gave was not a great one as I did'nt complete the ritual however I suppose I did engage longer in fanytasy than I would have liked to so perhaps teh 'point of no return ' was when I took that 'second look' at teh girls cleavage.
I would love to live my life without a need or desire to take a second look, Thats what I'm working on.

A better example of anm element in a chain may be what happened last night - I slipped :(
I was in bed on teh lap top looking at work related things when teh urge to just put some porn on my phone and mb came.
It all happened in an instant but if I examine it in the clois light of day I can see that the perfect storm was brewing - I was tired, alone, away from home, feeling sorry for myself, hav'nt done any lessons on RN for over a week and have been on a good 6 week stretch so convinced myself (in a split second) that it was ok to look at porn and mb, sure everyone does it and its alot safre than doing something more dangerous.......

The point of no return came as soon as I had the phone in my hand.

The break that was needed if that scenario played again was to move my phone away from me - phone my friend for support/ advice/ accountability, write out my values or say them out loud......
None of those steps were taken and I slipped, I enjoyed it while it was happending, the excitement, mental and physical stimulation but am now dissapointed.
Life is definitely better without such unwsb's.

_________________
"Don't judge each day by the Harvest that you reap but by the seeds that you plant"
"If you do not succeed, make sure it is not because you did'nt try hard enough"


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 Post subject: Re: Ace's Recovery Forum
PostPosted: Fri Feb 22, 2019 8:57 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:50 am
Posts: 150
Location: Ireland
The next lesson begins with
In learning to manage compulsive urges, there are four skills that are necessary to master:

Quote:
You need to understand the role that compulsive behavior plays in your life (e.g. providing you with a means of achieving immediate emotional stimulation)


I wish I had read that last night!!!!

_________________
"Don't judge each day by the Harvest that you reap but by the seeds that you plant"
"If you do not succeed, make sure it is not because you did'nt try hard enough"


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 Post subject: Re: Ace's Recovery Forum
PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 2019 10:36 am 
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Recovery Coach

Joined: Thu Apr 29, 2010 8:07 pm
Posts: 3846
Location: UK
Hello Ace
a couple of months ago you posted
Quote:
last night - I slipped :(


that was your last post WHY????????????

slips can and do happen as does relapse but that/they are no reason to simply say F*** it :ni:

you can do this but only if you want to
what do you have to lose ? SFA
what do you have to gain? a life

CHOOSE
put that guilt and shame behind you
I suggest you reflect and as said CHOOSE

_________________
Remember recovery is more than abstinence
Every transition begins with an ending
Do not confuse happiness with seeking pleasure
stay healthy keep safe
Coach Kenzo


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 Post subject: Re: Ace's Recovery Forum
PostPosted: Wed Jun 19, 2019 6:07 am 
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Location: Ireland
I have been MIA since late February.
Alike most of teh guys who sign up to this course and then dissapear it was not because I 'recovered' or found teh answer somewhere else.

It is because I slipped and felt bad, slipped again and have been on and off teh wagon ever since.

The more I put into 'recovery' - the more I get out of it but for some reason I cannot seem to COMMIT to daily recovery. I get a few days or weeks of sobriety under my belt and then slip. The self dialouge is the same " Go on - you deserve it - its no big deal - everyone (nearly) does it - you are not hurting anyone - C'mon man up and get it over with, you'll feel better and be more productive at work.......etc. etc."

Each of those statements is of course a lie. Its the addict trying to get what he wants.

Not sure now whether I should stsrt from teh beginning again or take up from where I left off.... I think I will do the latter and if I stick with it determine then if I should continue or restart.

_________________
"Don't judge each day by the Harvest that you reap but by the seeds that you plant"
"If you do not succeed, make sure it is not because you did'nt try hard enough"


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 Post subject: Re: Ace's Recovery Forum
PostPosted: Mon Jun 24, 2019 6:26 am 
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Recovery Mentor

Joined: Wed Nov 14, 2018 2:39 am
Posts: 148
Hi Ace,

Glad to see you are back.
First of all, if you slip, try and not feel bad about slipping and please do not avoid your RN work because of that. Everyone is here to help, so while you may be embarrassed to post it, hiding away will probably lead to more problems.

Quote:
The more I put into 'recovery' - the more I get out of it but for some reason I cannot seem to COMMIT to daily recovery. I get a few days or weeks of sobriety under my belt and then slip. The self dialouge is the same " Go on - you deserve it - its no big deal - everyone (nearly) does it - you are not hurting anyone - C'mon man up and get it over with, you'll feel better and be more productive at work.......etc. etc."


I will say that you have to commit to daily recovery and I will say, remind yourself that you are hurting someone even if that someone is YOU.

I would not suggest that you start again, but review your reasons, values & goals before moving on, make sure everything you wished for is still what you want as an end result.

The more you concentrate on the work, the more chance you have of succeeding.

_________________
“Change your thoughts, change your life.” ~Lao Tzu
Regards
T


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 Post subject: Re: Ace's Recovery Forum
PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2019 7:49 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:50 am
Posts: 150
Location: Ireland
Thank you Theseus for your comments.

Even though I have not been doing the lessons the way I should (actually I hav'nt been doing them at all!) I still use some of the principles espoused in RN to keep me on the straight and narrow.

Also, As I have stated before on the forum that I am lucky enough to have a couple of guys that I speak to weekly (more if needed) that originated from a different recovery site.

I've made a few realisations in my 20 year struggle with addiction - one would be how CONSISTENCY of effort whether it be in sporting prowess, business or recovery is a key to success. I have a history of making progress and then falling back into old ways. I am SO MUCH better than where I was just a few years ago yet am never to far away. Things have been going relatively well lately but I am back because I have to credit RN with giving me the tools and awareness that I never had in the past - also it learning and going through teh program was the first time in my life I noticed the DESIRE for porn and unhealthy sexual behaviours dissapate. So I am back attempting to use the tools and learn with more consitstency.

_________________
"Don't judge each day by the Harvest that you reap but by the seeds that you plant"
"If you do not succeed, make sure it is not because you did'nt try hard enough"


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 Post subject: Re: Ace's Recovery Forum
PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2019 8:32 am 
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Posts: 150
Location: Ireland
Lesson 44:

Using the Urge awareness form.

I have decided to start back a few lessons form where I stopped a few months ago. The Urge control is poignent as I am about to travel away from home for business and will be gone for 48hrs.

I'll map my ritual and add awareness breaks.

RITUAL:
1. Night before going out of town on business, knowing as I lie in bed that I could do ANYTHING that I want to with that time - I am an adult - I work for myself - the time is my own to do with what I choose. That in itself is a trigger - I may stsrt to dip my toe in teh water of fantasy ...what if....the thought of viewing porn and escort sites...massage parlours...how good it could feel.
2. Notice that my conscience is attempting to pull me back - to remind me that those fantasies are definitely NOT what I really want - they bring hurt, depsir and chaos.
3. On the two jour journey to my destination - I notice thoughts creep back in again - what if I was was to meet an escort ....how good could that potentially be? Fantasy starts to build...attempt to fight it but not too much, other thoughts take over but teh seed has been sown.
4. At some stage in the day, usually late afternoon, I am a little fed up, concerned about business, concerned about not enjoying my job, seeing problems in my life, the thoughts of escape through porn and escort sites gets stronger. I fight it a little bit but I know it will offer immediate escape and it feels exhiliarating.
5. Use my phone to log on to view escorts in the local area, then further afield - always looking for someone to be just what I am looking for but as you can never get enough of what wont satisfy you, that search continues on and on.
6. It may culminate in watching porn and mb so that I can get some relief from the constant pull.
7. I then feel dissapointed, spent, sad, lonely, upset and fearful of what the night holds - th efact teh door is opened now after a few hours I may be seeking relief again.
8. In bed in the hotel hours later, perhaps I have viewed porn again and mb.
9. Fall alseep further dissapointed, despondent, regretful, the wasted time, if only I could beat this.....
10. Awake the following day, go to work and do my best but I have a heavy heart, I am ashamed and sad, fearful of when if ever this will end and where it may lead....

So thats a ritual - writing and reading it out like that is helpful especially as I am going away so soon (tomorrow morning)

I can see quite clearly where that sequence of events starts (in bed this evening) I must be vigilant and create a break immediately.
Also I need to fill teh darkness with light - Have a plan for tomorrow - exactly what will I be doing and when...
How to I expect and hope to feel?
How do I ensure that the odds are stackd in my favour rather than against?

The first steps are writing this out here - already it is more real to me as I have lived teh above scenario so many times - teh addictive / compulsive part of me deceiving me into teh false belief that "Theres nothing wrong with just thinking about it".......but there is - Its like a cub scout starting a campfire under a tree in a dry forest saying "theres nothing wrong with lighting just a small fire'....

So from here I am recognising the urge and taking action.

_________________
"Don't judge each day by the Harvest that you reap but by the seeds that you plant"
"If you do not succeed, make sure it is not because you did'nt try hard enough"


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 Post subject: Re: Ace's Recovery Forum
PostPosted: Tue Jul 02, 2019 7:28 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:50 am
Posts: 150
Location: Ireland
POST NIGHT AWAY UPDATE:

Really, Really Struggled.

The day before yesterday I had written out my action plan and felt very confident.

Then yesterday I drove into a mcDonalds to get some breakfast on my two hour journey.
Then I saw a woman who renminded me greatly of someone who I had a relationship years ago. Exactly. She was very attractive and ticked all my boxes.
I was immediately and dissapointingly thrown. Thoughts of the past and the potential future, how exciting, exhilarating etc. etc. The less exciting reality of the chaos that could be caused by engaging in an affair or anything else was hidden from my minds view.

Then I struggled for the day. I had time on my hands and was very very close to getting out the phone and viewing escorts and porn.
I managed to phone a friend instead and worked out that if I just got through teh next two hours without acting out then the rest of the night would look after itself as I was no longer on my own.

So I got through it - I am very happy/ relieved about that BUT there was no parade or celebration party organised, my celebration was muted.

So today is teh aftermath. I am tired from yesterdays tug of war. I remember having success on this program before and the highlight was that I had no cravings - I just did'nt want to act out as I had the knowledge of what was happening and it was a fantastic 2/3 months of no cravings, no acing out, no guilt.

So I've started the day with a hangover from yesterday, I did'nt 'act out' but I came very very close. I know have a few ours free to choose to either work or escape into fantasy.

Thats what has brought me here - reaching out - trying to get back control and stayon teh path that has a brighter future.

_________________
"Don't judge each day by the Harvest that you reap but by the seeds that you plant"
"If you do not succeed, make sure it is not because you did'nt try hard enough"


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 Post subject: Re: Ace's Recovery Forum
PostPosted: Tue Jul 02, 2019 8:19 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:50 am
Posts: 150
Location: Ireland
LESSON 44
Another Urge Control Awareness Form:
(based on yesterday)

1. See a very attractive woman who reminds me of a previous lover.
2. Notice my mind 'switching on'
3. Notice a recognition that this may open teh door to fantasy and that I have an opportunity to close that door
4. Choose to 'enjoy' the fantasy, the visual spectacle in foront of me, imagine what it would be like to rekindle a romance with teh previous lover or even with this woman....who knows maybe we would get on great!
5. Notice that my values start to pull at me - this is not wahat I really want, worse than that it could lead to devastating consequences....
6. Make a choice to continue periodically over the next hour fantasisiing about what 'could be'
7. Know that I am feeding the wrong wolf but as dopamine is being pumped I blank that reality out of my mind
8. Convince myself that it is no big deal - its not watching porn, its natural, everyone does it, its not cheating, I can handle it, I deserve it
9. As the wrong wolf has been fed I am set up for a struggle or fall later in teh day, my barrier are down, the tug of war continues - will I - won't I ............Its exhausting.
10. I either act out and feel terrible about myself or I do not and feel drained and dissapointed that I have had to battle again.
11. Both those mindframes set me up tpo sek escape in the future.

_________________
"Don't judge each day by the Harvest that you reap but by the seeds that you plant"
"If you do not succeed, make sure it is not because you did'nt try hard enough"


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 Post subject: Re: Ace's Recovery Forum
PostPosted: Wed Jul 03, 2019 6:21 am 
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Posts: 150
Location: Ireland
Lesson 44
A. Describe in your recovery thread the role that your core identity will play in helping you to establish/maintain a healthy life.


What I understand is that knowing who I am - what is important to me - what is REALLY important to me will help guide me in my decision making.
I've struggled with this question many times - I see how having clearly defined values keeps a person more focused on attaining those values and less distracted by other things.

_________________
"Don't judge each day by the Harvest that you reap but by the seeds that you plant"
"If you do not succeed, make sure it is not because you did'nt try hard enough"


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 Post subject: Re: Ace's Recovery Forum
PostPosted: Wed Jul 03, 2019 6:27 am 
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Posts: 150
Location: Ireland
Quote:
Lesson 44
B. Describe the role that value-based experiences will play in further developing your core identity.


When I think of value based experienced I think of playing tennis in the back garden with my kids and wife (its a kids mini net and racquets - I don't have a tennis court in my garden!)

They are very pleasurable happy experiences and I am meeting my values of strengthening my relationship with my wife, my children and taking physical excercise and being out under the sun.

Thats about 5 values in one activity!!

When I teach my sons how to hit teh ball correctly or not to cheat or other fundamentals of sport then addictional pleasurable chemicals are realeased as it is important to me that my boys feel that their Dad has teached them valuable life lessons.

The fuller my life is of those values based experienced I expect the less I will crave the escape of porn and sexual behaviours

_________________
"Don't judge each day by the Harvest that you reap but by the seeds that you plant"
"If you do not succeed, make sure it is not because you did'nt try hard enough"


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 Post subject: Re: Ace's Recovery Forum
PostPosted: Wed Jul 03, 2019 6:34 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:50 am
Posts: 150
Location: Ireland
Quote:
Lesson 44
C. Take some time to examine the current state of your core identity. How in tune with it are you? When you engage in activity that is destructive, what role does your core identity play in that decision? How is it affected by the consequences of that decision?


I don't think that I am in tune with my core identity.
When I engage in an activity that is destructive (like fantasising or viewing porn for hours) it may be because my core identity craves excitement, physical and mental stimulation, chasing the high of danger.

It is eventually like a moth flying around a flame - it is drawn there by teh bright lights and the false promise of something good - after spending hours flirting around teh lightbulb it eventually gets its wings burned and pays the consequences.
When I engage in destructive activities my core identity is brought into question....Is this the real me?...I say I value my wife and family yet when I act in such a destructive way I am putting them in harms way....

Then I think I know what I WANT my vales to be BUT I don't really know what they are or how much I REALLY value them.........

_________________
"Don't judge each day by the Harvest that you reap but by the seeds that you plant"
"If you do not succeed, make sure it is not because you did'nt try hard enough"


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 Post subject: Re: Ace's Recovery Forum
PostPosted: Thu Jul 04, 2019 7:14 am 
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Recovery Mentor

Joined: Wed Nov 14, 2018 2:39 am
Posts: 148
Hi Ace,

Quote:
I don't think that I am in tune with my core identity.
When I engage in an activity that is destructive (like fantasising or viewing porn for hours) it may be because my core identity craves excitement, physical and mental stimulation, chasing the high of danger.


My advice here is to channel the stimulation that your mind needs into other activities. Find new things to do if you do not already have hobbies etc.
I always had other things of interest, but I let them fall by the wayside purely because acting out was always top of my priorities.
What I have not done though, is replace one addiction for another, it is an important thing to remember.

_________________
“Change your thoughts, change your life.” ~Lao Tzu
Regards
T


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 Post subject: Re: Ace's Recovery Forum
PostPosted: Sun Jul 07, 2019 7:17 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:50 am
Posts: 150
Location: Ireland
Thanks for your advice Theseus - appreciated.

Quote:
Lesson 44
B. Describe the role that value-based experiences will play in further developing your core identity.


As I have stepped away from active addiction it is easeier to choose the vale based experiences and enjoy them.
I just played mini tennis with my nephew and son and it was a very good connection, there are only so many hours in the day and when I fill some of them with value based activities it is not just that I have less time for unhealthy compulsive behaviours it is that I am less likely to seek them out for a hit of dopamine.

That said I realise I am still in early recovery (even though I have been 'in recovery' for over 20 years) I have always lacked in CONSISTENCY which is part of the resaon that I have returned here.

I received a couple of whattsapp messages from a friend a few days ago. One was very triggering and even though I looked at it and then deleted it, the image has stayed with me.
Then last night as I was drifting to sleep I found my mind wandering to thoughts of an unhealthy sexual nature.
I recognised thenm but did not want to stop - I was 'enjoying' if that is teh correct word the trance, it is probably more correct to say that I was 'in a trance'.

Ultimately I chose to open that message knowing that half of his messages have a sexual nature to them and knowing that unlike other people those messages can have a lasting negative impact on me.

Choice point:
Step 1. Receive a whattsapp msg from my friend
2. Feel that sense of excitement - it could be really funny as many of them are
3. Feel a sense of excitement - it could be triggering - as many of them are
4. That feeling of excitement is also tinged with afeeling of dissapointment - firstly that I have those cravings and secondly that I often feel powerless to stop them
5. Rememeber that I AM IN CHARGE - I Decide whether to open that message or delete it - Think about how good it will feel to always choose Delete whne I receive them.
6. Remember that tey story teh addictive voice tells me - that "its just a msag - all guys send them" "You are in control of this - you got it - don't fret you can open without consequence" is FALSE.
The plain truth is that opening these messages is opening the door to temptation, acting in a way that is against my values and breaking my boundaries. These images lead to a short term buzz followed by a longer term dissapointment, regret, remorse, fear and sadness and supporting an underlying belief that I WILL NEVER be without these cravings.
A more achievable belief is that a day will come when I no longer have cravings so strong that I feel that I HAVE TO act on them.

_________________
"Don't judge each day by the Harvest that you reap but by the seeds that you plant"
"If you do not succeed, make sure it is not because you did'nt try hard enough"


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