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 Post subject: Re: Ace's Recovery Forum
PostPosted: Wed Jul 25, 2018 3:31 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:50 am
Posts: 175
Location: Ireland
I hav'nt managed 2 weeks sobriety in a long time (and my longest stretch was 3 months), I think its partly because I have been using an excuse of having 'bottom line behaviours' that as long as I did'nt engage in those (contacting escorts/ massage parlours/camming) then Porn and mb were viewed (in my eyes) as an acceptable second best. Perhaps a bit like a heroin addict allowing himself to have class b drugs like hashish instead. That thought pattern has kept the door of compulsion open.
I now recognise that if I have any chance of true recovery then I must erase all porn and mb from my life also...it is just feeding the addiction. I've been afraid of going 'cold turkey' because it is uncomfortable.
Its amazing to me how I have held onto those beliefs for so long and also how at times of 'craving' I convince myself that 'just a little bit' wont do anyharm as it could be 'so much worse'.....
How can I have kept fooling myself for so long wit this thought process?
I am back to tracking my days and monitoring how I am feeling emotionally. I stopped this years ago as I felt that 'counting days' was setting myself up for failure - as soon as I would reach a certain milestone, one week, 10 days, 2 weeks etc. my resolve was weakerned as teh voice in my head would say "you can give up if you WANT to - you've just proved it ...time to reward yourself...just a litle bit wont hurt" etc....
This tracking is different though - I mark when I have slipped with detail - what was happening pysically emotionally etc.

_________________
"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 25, 2018 5:01 am 
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Recovery Coach

Joined: Thu Apr 29, 2010 8:07 pm
Posts: 3914
Location: UK
Hello Ace
Quote:
I now recognise that if I have any chance of true recovery then I must erase all porn and mb from my life also...it is just feeding the addiction. I've been afraid of going 'cold turkey' because it is uncomfortable.


IMO it goes deeper than erasing the lesser of our "drugs of choice"

True recovery requires a step change in our way of thinking and consequent behaviour, yes this is certainly "uncomfortable" or more likely painful but only in the short term
recovery is so liberating it has to be lived to be appreciated


Quote:
This tracking is different though - I mark when I have slipped with detail - what was happening pysically emotionally etc.


:g:
to a point
having the data available recorded and logged is one thing, interpreting and using , learning from and thus changing is another
so I guess my point is that we need to walk the talk
I do hope that you do so
good luck, choose wisely

_________________
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: Tue Aug 07, 2018 6:20 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:50 am
Posts: 175
Location: Ireland
Update;
I have just returned from a weeks holiday with my family, it was good connecting time, we all got on very well except that myself and my wife often argue about our kids.
I feel that they are spoilt and need firmer boundaries, she puts up with more 'moaning' than I feel is in the best interests of the parents OR the children.
Myself and my wife got on very well, probably better than ever and I know at least part of the reason for that is that I was 'present' on this holiday, not day dreaming about other women or porn or sex.
I'm embarressed writing that statement because of the cringe factor of my wife reading it, the shame.
However I am moving in the right direction.
I've returned to work and am hit with the sense of urgency to get some business/ money in the door but I am definitely calmer.
It is so much better living a life without anything to hide on my phone.

_________________
"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 Aug 07, 2018 6:23 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:50 am
Posts: 175
Location: Ireland
Thanks for the advice Kenzo

_________________
"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 Aug 07, 2018 7:40 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:50 am
Posts: 175
Location: Ireland
Quote:
Lesson 28 Exercise:
1. Develop a compulsive chain of your most recent acting out behavior.

2. Upon completion of this chain, review it to ensure that you can recognize the way that each element affected your emotional state.

3. Thinking as an addict, look for areas within this chain where you could add additional destructive elements that would have (most likely) increased the overall stimulation of the event. The actual events that you add should be realistic, and related to the chain itself. For instance, someone viewing porn might add the element of setting up a Power Point slide show of the images. Someone engaging in escort services might add the element of videotaping the encounters. Share these in your recovery thread.


Cruising the red light district after attending the cinema:

1. As soon as I hear 'Cinema' I think of an enjoyable healthy outlet but also unforunately I also associate it crusiing the red light district afterwards because that is what I have done in the past searching 'the buzz'.
1.b. Recognise the conflicting emotions - firstly that a visit to the cinema is always a helathy enjoyable outlet for me and secondly that it poses a danger.
2. I fleetingly engage with a sense of conflict - I don't want to cruise but I know the excitement that it has provided me in the past, I know there may be a struggle ahead.
3. I convince myself that I will only go to the cinema and then straight home (but only 99% convinced)
4. While at the cinema I think about cruising and what I could see, what possibilities there are.....
5. I stop myself and try and return/ focus back on the movie and 'connecting' with my brother/ friends
6. Notice the tingling in my stomach - crusining/ engaging in those voyeuristic behaviours gives me a 10 of adrenaline rush going home after the movie gives me a 3.
7. Finish the movie and still pretend to myself that I am going to go straight home
8. Notice the thrill, adrenaline rush as I turn the car and head towards teh red light district, the anticipation is always better than the event.
9. Heighten teh sense of excitement , thrill by keeping an eye on teh clock knowing that I should be home by now.
10. Push away the feelings of guilt, shame and impending regret telling myself that I am only looking
11. Cruise and search for 'the one' image that will give me the greatest sense of thrill.
12. See other 'kerb crawlers' and notice how many lone males seem to drive the same route, think about how many of them are 'struggling' with this behaviour like I am and how many do not consider anything wrong with it.
13. See a police car and notice the excitement exhiliration rise with teh thoughts of what may happen if I was stopped and questioned - sense of fear and danger heightened.
14. See a prostitute and drive by back and forth, imagine engaging with her which extends teh excitement.
15. Due to time, turn the car and head home and high speed.
16. On the way back feel ashamed to the core. How did this happen again? I hate myself.

Quote:
look for areas within this chain where you could add additional destructive elements that would have (most likely) increased the overall stimulation of the event.


I could have stoped and talked with a prostitute, that would give an extended high as I come closer and closer to the edge.
I could have stopped the car and asked a prostitute to climb in and engage sexually - again teh thought of that and the event itrself would be very destructive elements guarateed to increase the overall stimulation of the event (and the overall sense of despair and shame afterwards)

_________________
"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 Aug 10, 2018 3:02 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:50 am
Posts: 175
Location: Ireland
Quote:
Lesson 29
After you have done this for fifteen minutes (or longer), and before you engage in any compulsive behavior, open your eyes and complete the following:

A. Describe the emotions that you experienced and the thoughts that triggered them.

B. In assessing your own anxiety, describe the extremes of your personal experiences with anxiety. What has been the least anxious state you have experienced and the most extreme anxious state you have experienced?


I will have to return to part (A) when I have quiet time.

(B) Some of my most extreme experiences with anxiety have been

1) Anytime I thought I was about to 'get caught' by my wife after engaging in in some compulsivebehaviour or other, suddenly freezing while in the kiltchen when I realise that I have left my phone unsecured upstairs and my wife may be scrolling through it seeing contacts for massage parlours, escorts etc. that deep feeling of shock, upset, shame, need to cover my tracks, the need to come up with some excuse to legitimise or minimise whatever is found......the memory sends an unpleasant heat through my body - I am on maximum tension and feel sick at the pit of my stomach.

2) At work, a problem client was due in with her so who happens to be a solicitor and well versed in tearing apart people like myself who avoid arguments and confrontation....(in the end the cause of the problem was clearly the clients so teh solicitor had little argument however I remember not sleeping for days before the 'meeting' - I remember all teh emotions of
FEAR - i will not be able to defend myself adequately and will make a bad situation worse
SHAME - i cannot stand up for myself the way I should be able to
WORRY - that things may escalate and worsen, that I will be 'found out' to be less than adequate
DESPAIR - That I am trying to defend a situation in a work role that I do not enjoy
POOR SELF ESTEEM - I do not have confidence in myself to handle the situation well

3) There have been many occasions when I should stand up for myself, return goods that do not fit, demand a better quality work from a contrator etc. but I do not (I get my wife to do it!!) as I can't stand teh confrontation, I find excuses for the contracter and convince myself and my wife that there is no point in argueing with the contracter as we got teh job done for a cheap price or it is not a simple fix or we just wont use them again etc. There have been many emotions of discomfort around that and feelings similar to above.

The least anxious states that I have experienced have been with my family:

1) When I was younger (late teens) living at home, in the kitchen setting with my Mother and sisters laughing and telling stories, I was the one cracking jokes and showing confidence - I'm sure even now my family believe I have alot of confidence, alot more than I actually have. I remember being teh opposite to anxious - I was relaxed, confident and really enjoying myself in a safe environment.

2) With my wife - whether sitting in bed together watching a movie or going for a walk holding hands - I trust her completely and know that even when I make mistakes and am imperfect she still loves me and supports me. I am lucky to have her, neither of us like confrontation so for the most part we try and agree on things that may cause other couples arguments.

_________________
"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 Aug 10, 2018 3:12 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:50 am
Posts: 175
Location: Ireland
Im now over two weeks 'clean' and just spent a night away from home which traditionally would be a guaratee of acting out in some compulsive way.
Last night / yesterday I did not, I went for a swim after work and then back to my hotel room and did some work on recovery. This has been a big milestone for me because it is te forst time I can remmeber in 25 years of struggle that I did not have to wrestle the cravings and either give in (most often) or get through by white knuckling and then slip a few days later.
The 'cravings' were reduced - partly I believe by the fact that I was recognising the point at which I had a 'choice' of which direction to lead myself - compulsions or my values.
For example in teh swimming pool I noticed a very attractive woman. I noticed that she had tanned skin and athletic body and had a young child with her, my mind began racing with thoughts of an affair, how tired she must be with a child and how exciting an affair would be for her and me 9Unfortunately having children does not preclude someone for having an affair)
I noticed this as a critical point - I had a choice to make. I turned away and began swimming in teh opposite direction trying to get a sense of 'how I felt'.
That decision contributed to my success later that evening and helped ensure that I did not have the pre loaded images/ thoughts knocking at my minds door setting me up for a slip.
I'm certainly not out of the woods yet but I can start to see some light in the distance.

_________________
"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 Aug 13, 2018 4:14 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:50 am
Posts: 175
Location: Ireland
I'm kind of using this Forum as my own Recovery Journal, I don't know whether that is right or wrong but including my daily emotions/ observations along with the lesson responses seems to be helping me so I'll keep doing it until I hear otherwise.
I'm defintley a bit calmer, less 'on edge' as I approach 20 days clean and that feels good.
However, I was channel hopping last night and a news report on the criminalisation of lap dancing clubs was being shown, it showed two strippers and I was moe than aroused by their dancing (isnt that the purpose)...
2 things - Number one I could have turned it off immediately but did not, I'm not going to beat myself up over that too much except to note its effect on me for teh future as number 2 - I recognise that I havnt had that type of fantasy/ stimulation in about 3 weeks and how powerful a surge that it was.
I'll have to be extra vigilant over the next few days, not just beacause I am exceeding 3 weeks clean without major craving but now also because those images will ramain in my mind (although I am challenging them straight away with ststements like "The reason this was on teh news is because lapdancing/ stripping has already been criminalized in Denmark and there is evidence that many of teh young women working within teh industry turn to drugs or alcohol ot 'numb' the emotions so that they can 'perform'. Do I really want to be the type of man who contributes to an industry that damages young women?
Does being stimulated by these images bring me closer to or further away from my values?
Would I be comfortable leering at these women if my wife or son were watching me?....
These questions and others bring me back to the reality that I have a choice and I am making a values based decision to distance myself from such images/ industry.

_________________
"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 Aug 13, 2018 6:18 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:50 am
Posts: 175
Location: Ireland
Quote:
Now, consider one of your milder compulsive behaviors. Try to get in touch with the feelings that are generated with this behavior. If you find yourself getting triggered to act, forbid yourself. Then focus on the anxiety that is produced with that decision. Really allow yourself to get in touch with the stress that is building. Consider the reality that, either during this exercise or soon thereafter, you will face the challenge of deciding whether or not you should act on these feelings. Begin to feel the consequences of both your decision to masturbate, and your decision to remain committed to recovery.

After you have done this for fifteen minutes (or longer), and before you engage in any compulsive behavior, open your eyes and complete the following:

A. Describe the emotions that you experienced and the thoughts that triggered them.


I thought about the images that I had seen on the TV screen last night, I felt emotions of arousal and warmth, as if I was in a tunnel except not driving though it, insteda being taken on a train ride through it, I was blanking out everything to teh left and right and being pulled towards a warmth, a comfort, an excitement of physical and emotional exporation and satisfaction.
At the same time I felt na undercurrent that this journey was incongruent with what I really wanted, that it was leading me to a dangerous place and was on high alert that I could be 'caught' and would regret it, I thought of my wifes face and and how dissapointed and hurt she would be if I engaged with those fantasies, I felt uncomfortable.

This excercise has helped me understand how by developing those 'harmless fantasies' I am in fact doing damage, my resolve weakens and I am more likely to seek 'the rush' from those and similar fantasies soon, I feel dissapointed in myself and ashamed but also fearful of where it may lead and for how long my life will be a tug of war between compulsive behaviour and my values.

_________________
"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 Aug 13, 2018 10:48 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:50 am
Posts: 175
Location: Ireland
Quote:
Lesson 31 Exercise:
In learning to effectively manage your life (e.g. maintain relative emotional balance), it is important to develop an ongoing awareness of where the majority of your energy is being exhausted and where it is being derived. In your Personal Recovery Thread:

A. Make a list of all identifiable stressors that have affected your emotional health over the past week. For each, document whether it is a mild, moderate, severe or extreme stressor. Example: 1) Facing Possible Divorce: extreme; 2) Lost respect among friends and family: moderate

B. Return to your values list created earlier in the workshop. In a healthy life, the majority of energy being drained (e.g. stress) should be related to the pursuit of your highest prioritized values (top fifteen or so). Do you see this pattern in your life? If not, what do you think this means in terms of the way that you are expending your energy?

C. Likewise, in a healthy life, the majority of meaning and stimulation that you gain should also be related to your highest values. Do you see this pattern in your life? If not, what do you think this means in terms of the quality of life you are living?

Share any insights in your Personal Recovery Thread.


My major stressors this week were a lack of success in sales for my new business leading to great feelings of inadequacy and supporting a belief that I will fail. I have had a sore throat for the last few days and know it is directly related to these above emotions.
Although investing time and energy in my career is one of my values I need to balance it more with realistic expectations.
I have had a good level of communication with my wife considering that we spent the majority of teh week with the parents in law which brings its own stress and agreed last night to book a night away for ourselves next week to re connect.
My son misbehaving was the second highest stressor for me and although myself and my wife have argued about how best to parent/discipline/teach/guide him she (in credit to her) seems to be coming around to my way of thinking that he needs more firmness. Getting that nmessage across without undermining her parenting skills is not an easy task and I admit that I am not the most skilled in that area and also admit that just because I may think it teh best way to discipline/ guide/ teach a child does not neccessarily make it so.....
Due to feeling under the weather, I did not get the excercise that I usually like to take so feel that I am missing out there - thats a value that is missing.
Recovery - Investing time in my recovery to become a better man is one of my values and I have succeeded in doing that each day hence my long streak.
I need to review my values.

_________________
"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 Aug 14, 2018 10:59 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:50 am
Posts: 175
Location: Ireland
Quote:
Lesson 32 Exercise:
1. Early in the workshop, you created approximately fifteen 'proactive action plans' that were intended to list specific steps to take to strengthen certain values that are important to you. Return to these action plans and for each, review your progress. Summarize your progress on your recovery thread.

2. Update your Proactive Action Plans as needed.


I have defitley grown and invested more effort in some of my pro active action plans namely more consistent gym attendence, attempting to reach out and talk to my wife more, soending a bit more quality time with the kids and investing time and effort in my recovery BUT the majority of my other values and pro action plans have not been acted on in any apreciable way.
I guess thats why step 2 above is needed.....

Top 15 Values:

1.Living with Integrity and honesty, what I say and do are congruent.
2. Making my wife and kids feel special, loved, supported, protected, safe.
3.Being without pain, feeling strong and healthy, fit and able, appreciative of the wonderful body and mind that I have been given, looking after it through exercise and nutrition
4. Creating happy memories for my kids to cherish, playing in the garden, laughing, that bond of family and friendship, trying to understand and be patient with a 4 year old, 7 year old, 12 year old, 18year old, 21 year old, etc.
5.I understand how important money is – I want to be able to provide for myself, my family and others who need it more than me – Financial Independence by establishing competence in my field
6.Being dependable and reliable– doing what I say I’ll do, when I say I’ll do it
7.Taking care of myself
8.Being a role model for my family and instilling healthy values in my kids
9.Developing emotional maturity
10.Sharing my true self with the world around me
11.Appreciating natural beauty/nature
12.Connecting to purpose, meaning of life
13.Fidelity
14.Feeling happy and content
15.Sense of accomplishment

1.Living with Integrity and honesty, what I say and do are congruent.

Interestingly, the more work I do on my 'recovery' the more I find myself upholding these values. How good it feels to have nothing on my phone that I am ashamed of.
Proactive action plan:
Log into RN, Fortify or Candeo each day even if just to update my tracker to always 'keep in touch' of why I am here, it helps keep me grounded.
Be as Honest as I can be (I struggle with absolute honesty after so many years covering up) with myself and in Group.
Be as open as I can be with my wife, never lie to her, it is better to disagree than lie.
Remember that when I deceitful or dishonest I am acting incongruently with my values and doing deep damage to my self esteem. "True happiness is when what you say, think and act are all in harmony"

_________________
"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 Aug 23, 2018 5:08 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:50 am
Posts: 175
Location: Ireland
Quote:
Updated Action Plans:


2. Making my wife and kids feel special, loved, supported, protected, safe.

Tell them that I love them as regularly as possible, I find this difficult but I must remember how important it is to say it and to hear it.
Schedule 'family time' so that we can spend time together and enjoy each others company.
Tell my boys how I have noticed them get better/ improve at whatever it is and how I know they have put effort in to make that happen (nurturing a growth/ work mindset)
Tell my wife she is my best friend
Compliment her
Talk to my boys individually to help them understand that I am here for them if ever they feel they need me.
Be aware of the parenting choices/strategies that I have when they need to be reprimanded/guided. Take a deep breath, remember that I am the adult and thus may 'see' teh situation differently then they would.

3.Being without pain, feeling strong and healthy, fit and able, appreciative of the wonderful body and mind that I have been given, looking after it through exercise and nutrition

Commit to a regular pattern of excercise and USE MY DIARY! When I do I am more likely to record the weights lifted, effort expended and that in turn keeps me motivated for teh future.
Remember the times that I have drifted off to sleep tinking of my next workout compared to drifting off to sleep thinking about a compulsive behaviour - one is healthy in a multitude of ways, the other is sacharine and draining.
Commit to doing the excercises for my shoulder and back to reduce the likliehood of pain
Consider the boxing class again it was fun and gets me fit

4. Creating happy memories for my kids to cherish, playing in the garden, laughing, that bond of family and friendship, trying to understand and be patient with a 4 year old, 7 year old, 12 year old, 18year old, 21 year old, etc.

This links into the above of making time for my kids and sometimes thinking 'this could be the last time I am with them' then making sure that they are happy and I am supporting them.

5.I understand how important money is – I want to be able to provide for myself, my family and others who need it more than me – Financial Independence by establishing competence in my field
Continue working hard, maximising my opportunities

_________________
"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 Aug 24, 2018 3:38 pm 
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Recovery Mentor

Joined: Tue Oct 17, 2017 11:22 am
Posts: 308
Hey Ace,

Quote:
fearful of where it may lead and for how long my life will be a tug of war between compulsive behaviour and my values.


I can tell you this resonates with many, including myself. To question the quality of what life after addiction looks and feels like is a reasonable concern. But what it tells me is how much this means to you. That you want to end this cycle. That you want to experience health. And so you shall if you choose it.

Lesson 15 states:
Quote:
Why the behavior continues is likely the same reason why all compulsive behavior continues: because it has become an efficient way to manage your emotions.

L2R mentions often, and I gently remind you as well, recovery is about managing your life, not about managing your addiction. Managing addiction is exhausting. Managing your life is fulfilling. Once you begin to truly understand this concept, the theories of this workshop can start to be put into practice. I know you've been through some of the lessons before, so please keep in mind that your concerns are absolutely valid and indeed addressed later in the workshop. Keep going.

Be Well,

Anon


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 Post subject: Re: Ace's Recovery Forum
PostPosted: Thu Aug 30, 2018 7:39 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2018 11:50 am
Posts: 175
Location: Ireland
Thanks a lot ANON
I'm struggling today but am on day 36 clean - that's a big deal for me as I always fall after week 1 or 2.
My longest stretch was 90 days but that was years ago.
I am away for. Home tonight out of town on business, the business is not going as well as I would have hoped and that makes me feel disappointed, a failure and a fear of what the future holds...
That mood puts me in a dangerous mindframe.
I have thought more about my old behaviours and what it would be like to engage in them this even I h more than I have in 36 days.
That realisation in itself is also adds to the sense of despair.
I feel as if I am being pulled back into acting out or more correctly that I am allowing myself to be...
Your words of encouragement have helped me pull back and try and focus more on 'managing my life's rather than being consumed by ' will I / won t I " thoughts of acting out.
Thankyou

_________________
"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 Aug 30, 2018 9:38 am 
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Recovery Mentor

Joined: Fri Sep 29, 2017 5:29 am
Posts: 419
Hi Ace,

Anon has offered you some good advice. You are heading towards half way through the programme now so a lot of the work should be starting to fall into place now, certainly in terms of how you should be thinking and dealing with the temptation to act out. You have said that you are away from home on business currently which, from my own experience, can bring back memories of acting out in the past and this brings with it a real threat. You have also said
Quote:
I'm struggling today but am on day 36 clean - that's a big deal for me as I always fall after week 1 or 2.
My longest stretch was 90 days but that was years ago.

Anon mentioned to you one of my favourite phrases gleaned from CoachJon which is that "Your goal in recovery is not to learn to manage addiction, it is to learn to manage your life.". If you are counting the days since you last acted out does that sound to you like an individual managing their life in a healthy way or more like an addict seeing how long it is until the ball is dropped? It sounds to me like you are setting yourself up for a lot of pressure as your 90 days approaches if you are able to make it that far. Perhaps try and disassociate yourself from being an addict and instead think of yourself as someone healthy that has chosen to live their life from now in a different way. The temptations you are counting the days against are not really there, you are putting the potential threat of their appeal into your head. You also mention
Quote:
the business is not going as well as I would have hoped and that makes me feel disappointed, a failure and a fear of what the future holds...
That mood puts me in a dangerous mindframe.

"Disappointment", "failure", "fear" and "mood" are all emotions. An SA will generally act out where they want to improve their emotional state, it is where an SA will try to compensate one emotion (negative) with another (positive). In your next Lesson (No. 33) CoachJon states "Master Your Emotions; Master Your Addiction" This would seem to be quite pertinent to you at this time.

You have choices ahead of you all the time and whilst you are away on business some important ones to make. Please choose wisely. If you are confused or stuck on anything in the lessons please record this on your thread and the coaches and mentors will be around to help you. Good luck and I hope you are able to turn a corner with a new mindset.

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L2R

A clean life; a clear conscience


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