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PostPosted: Fri Jul 12, 2019 3:26 am 
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A. Three keys to establishing a successful foundation for permanent change in early recovery are:

1) actively committing yourself to change
It has taken me about 12 months to realize that I need to change through activity/training, since I first realized that I might have a problem. I was quick to decide that I wanted to stop certain behaviors, but only now do I start to understand that I need to actively embrace and adopt new ways of thinking and acting in order to succeed. I thought I was doing well but over the last couple of months I have relapsed and I didn't even consider that I was betraying myself. I now want to be a different person.

2) not allowing guilt/shame to sabotage your commitment to change
I've been very open with my partner for the last 12 months, maybe too open sometimes as I need to think carefully about how she feels rather than only focusing on the benefits to me of being honest. I do feel guilt for the hurt I've caused and I do strongly dislike the way I have behaved and the person I have been. There is still a part of me that thinks "are you sure what you did was so bad? do you really need to worry so much and go through all this?". I think I need to remind myself of the impact on others and the impact on myself to keep this part of me from sabotaging my commitment to change! So actually a bit of guilt and shame doesn't seem like a bad thing right now. I don't worry that guilt and shame will lead me to act out (to make myself feel comforted), but I know that's a common problem, so I am going to try not to assume it won't happen to me.

3) allowing yourself time to change.
I feel like I am already changing. I don't know how long it will take to be fully healthy, I don't even yet fully understand what the steps will be or what it will feel like looking back. I am focused on working hard on this every day, making it my #1 focus. It will take as long as it takes but every day along the way will be a change in itself and that's good enough for today.

B. Beyond an active commitment to change, another important factor in determining your ultimate success is your motivation. Look deep inside and list ten to fifteen reasons why you seek to permanently change your life. Don't stop at three or four obvious ones, really examine your life and what is important to you. Phrase these in the positve. For example: " I don't want to keep deceiving my wife" would serve you better if written like "I want to be honest and transparent with my wife". Positive statements have much more power in our mindset than negative ones. List these in your recovery thread.
1. I want my partner to feel deep love and trust for me that gives her security and support to achieve her goals
2. I want my partner to respect me
3. I want to make a success of marriage with my partner
4. I want to have a loving and active sex life with my partner
5. I want to have children one day and give them strong values, especially that they should always see others as people with their own wants and thoughts, not as problems to solve or opportunities to take advantage of
6. I want to have a mind free of sexual images of strangers
7. I want to reclaim my mental energy that's being wasted on sexual fantasy and redirect it towards creativity and ambition
8. I want to be in public without ogling strangers
9. I want to be in public without feeling bombarded by impulses to ogle, which I have to fight off like a swarm of biting insects
10. I want to build real, platonic friendships with women I know
11. I want to become a person who listens, learns and cares for others
12. I want discipline and training to become a part of my everyday life
13. I want to write about life in a genuine way, understanding characters and allowing them to amuse and edify


C. One of the most powerful insights you can gain in establishing a foundation for permanent recovery is to come to see your addiction within the scope of your life span. In other words, to not just see your addiction as it is now, but to look across the span of your life to see the role that addiction has played in your development. Find a picture of yourself when you were a small child. Now, with the picture in hand, look into that child's eyes. Feel their innocence. Acknowledge that this child is you at a point in your life. It is this child who lost their way and you are the one now showing the courage to guide this child, who is you, back to health.
I can only do this from memory right now but I will do it from a real picture when I can get one (very soon). That child had so much potential and I don't feel I represent the future that he believed in.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 22, 2019 5:10 am 
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Joined: Thu Apr 29, 2010 8:07 pm
Posts: 3846
Location: UK
Hello HL

welcome to RN a proven well trodden path for recovery

Quote:
It has taken me about 12 months to realize that I need to change through activity/training, since I first realized that I might have a problem.


realisation of the fact is one step, acceptance is another as we addicts are great at denial
time taken is not an issue so long a commitment is maintained and progress is achieved


So if you really do want to improve your life and remove those self inflicted shackles of addiction and to recover from your emotion driven compulsive behaviours then you are at a good place to make that a reality, RN can show you the way
To achieve recovery then commit , fully and completely
work through the lessons and understand them , if you miss something ask on the help forum , assistance is always on hand, this community is supportive to those who demonstrate sincerity in their journey
coaches and mentors are likely to drop by occasionally but if not, don't worry as this is generally a good indicator that you are on the right path, you have not been abandoned

the path is long and difficult but it is well proven and you are not alone, many have taken the path sucessfully, your actions are yours but you are not the first and unfortunately will not be the last
we usually suggest completing about 3 lessons a week but spending time every day posting , reading, evaluating and putting into practice what you have learned, be open be honest, nobody here will judge you
get to know your addiction and see yourself with honesty and openness

remember to work at your own pace and its not a race indeed some consider recovery to be a journey rather than a destination

good luck

_________________
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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PostPosted: Wed Jul 24, 2019 3:20 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jun 29, 2019 8:40 am
Posts: 6
Thanks Kenzo, really appreciate the encouragement!

I've been working through the lessons but not posting them. I got up to lesson 5 and then got a bit stuck, I found it a bit daunting to have to boil down to 15 or so fundamental yet practical values to live by. I've been working with a therapist too so I have not given up! Am coming back to these RN lessons now and will try to work through :)

My post for lesson #2:

Think about who you are, the life that you have led, and the life that you want to lead from this point forward. Think about your legacy. Create a vision that you would feel comfortable committing yourself to pursuing. One that, as you someday look back upon your life, will allow you to feel proud of the person that you developed into. Of the life that you led.
Write out your vision. Use any format you would like. As a general rule, the more personal, the better.
"As we review these visions, what we will be looking for is the following:

1) Is it practical or is it idealistic? Practical is what we are shooting for. Idealistic visions feel good, sound good...but they serve very little purpose, other than to create unrealistic goals for which failure is already guaranteed.

2) Is this vision capable of sustaining a healthy life? Are there enough values identified that have the potential to generate fulfillment. To counter instability. To drive decision-making."

I want to be a source of wisdom and insight. I want to tell stories with purpose, to empathise with the person I'm with, to walk together with them towards enlightenment. Trust, and a feeling of welcome; these are what I hope people will feel when they are with me. I will work hard to learn, understand and be humble so that I create this value for others. I will make time and space in my life to find out new and wonderful things about the world we live in (whether natural or man-made, concrete or abstract, physical, cultural or intellectual). I will provide foundation and inspiration for my wife-to-be, my friends, my family and, to the extent that I can, to anyone with whom I come into contact. Perhaps one day I will be confident enough to do this in public, but not for fame or financial gain, instead only for the sake of whatever value each person finds in our interaction. For my wife-to-be I also want to exchange love, physical affection, sexual energy, trust and fun for all the days of our lives.

Marriage - starting with writing truly meaningful vows for ceremony, then planning an amazing wedding next year, then supporting and inspiring my wife throughout all the years to come and being the best partner I can be. Rekindle and nurture physical affection and sexual attraction.
Physical health and fitness - yoga, meditation, cycling, sports (tennis, skiing, diving) - "mens sana in corpore sano" but also the social aspect of arranging/hosting these activities
Friendships - take the initiative to arrange gatherings (even if just 2 people), contact people regularly to just talk about how they are
Family - spend quality time with parents in their final years, try to improve contact with the rest of the family
Creative skills - writing, music, cooking, science
Social impact - charity, education
Bring up children - joint enterprise
Design/renovate/build a new home - joint enterprise

Common factors: curiosity, patience, self-awareness, willingness to change, insight, strength of character, leadership, determination, breadth of perception, empathy, humour, discipline, wisdom

I want to be a father figure? What does that mean for me? Someone people trust, someone who hosts, someone who provides wisdom and insight, someone who can tell a story with a purpose.


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 24, 2019 3:22 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jun 29, 2019 8:40 am
Posts: 6
Lesson #3

Your goal for this lesson is to create a single, comprehensive list that involves all of the primary ways that you derive stimulation from your life. Or, those areas that you want to derive stimulation from. Most lists will contain between 50-100 items.
curiosity
patience
self-awareness
willingness to change
insight
strength of character
leadership
determination
breadth of perception
empathy
humour
discipline
wisdom
wordsmithing
creativity
freedom of imagination
understanding patterns of human thought, emotion and behaviour
understanding patterns in the natural world
integrity
genuine communication
bravery
being the best partner I can be
investing time in my wife's needs
planning events that others will enjoy
mindfulness
good posture
healthy heart
healthy lungs
strong bones
flexible muscles and tendons
playing tennis
skiing
diving
contacting friends to ask how they are
spending time with my parents
creating sounds
writing music
performing music
cooking food
discovering foods
learning about wine
hosting lunches and dinners
keeping up with scientific discoveries
helping people understand the nature of the universe
teaching my children
providing security to my children
helping my children stay free to make their own paths in life
make our home a happy place to live
make our home interesting
keep our home clean, warm, bright, comfortable
find a new home when the time is right
design/build/renovate a home
read new books
watch new films
listen to new music
go to art galleries
play new computer games
play board games with friends
visit my godson
teach my godson about science, maths, the world - whatever he wants to learn that I can teach
planning holidays that my wife-to-be and I will enjoy together
learning new things in my work
delivering more value to my colleagues at work so we all succeed together
taking care of my skin twice daily
getting a more regular haircut
cleaning my teeth more thoroughly and more regular flossing
buying thoughtful birthday gifts for a wider range of people
giving my time and expertize to charitable works
be physically affectionate with my wife-to-be (but not needy!)
be sexually attuned to my wife-to-be, and enjoy an active sex life with her based on intimacy and love


When you have extracted every possible value that you can think of from your vision, do the following:
1) Review this example values list for any additional values that you may want to add to your own list. List them.
Professional growth and value as a coworker
Good personal/family finance management and judgement


2) Consider the 'dark side' of your decision-making. The compulsive behavior. The sexual behavior. Take some time to extract the values that went into those behaviors, and list them as well.
take pleasure wherever I find it
don't commit to anything
enjoy as much sex as possible
if I'm doing something in private it can't be harmful
it's natural to enjoy looking at sexy women
being flexible / rejecting schedules and patterns
my personal experience of life is the only thing that matters
I should always explore hedonistic pleasure
I deserve to have treats
other people don't care about making me happy
the world is there for me to enjoy
I work hard and don't get enough in return
there's no point in being ambitious if I don't get sex in return


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 06, 2019 7:13 am 
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Joined: Sat Jun 29, 2019 8:40 am
Posts: 6
Lesson 4:

investing time in my wife's needs
planning holidays that my wife and I will enjoy together
buying thoughtful gifts
planning events that others will enjoy
willingness to change, especially actively evolving my interests and pastimes
be physically affectionate with my wife (but not needy!)
be sexually attuned to my wife, and enjoy an active sex life with her based on intimacy and love
cooking food
discovering foods
learning about wine
mindfulness
good posture
healthy heart
healthy lungs
taking care of my skin twice daily
getting a more regular haircut
cleaning my teeth more thoroughly and more regular flossing
wordsmithing
creativity
genuine communication
make our home a happy place to live
make our home interesting
keep our home clean, warm, bright, comfortable
Good personal/familiy finance management and judgement
giving my time and expertize to charitable works
teaching my children
providing security to my children
helping my children stay free to make their own paths in life
visit my godson
teach my godson about science, maths, the world - whatever he wants to learn that I can teach
contacting friends to ask how they are
spending time with my parents
learning new things in my work
delivering more value to my colleagues at work so we all succeed together
Professional growth and value as a coworker
strong bones
flexible muscles and tendons
playing tennis
skiing
diving
insight
breadth of perception
integrity
freedom of imagination
being the best partner I can be
curiosity
keeping up with scientific discoveries
patience
self-awareness
strength of character
leadership
determination
empathy
humour
discipline
wisdom
understanding patterns of human thought, emotion and behaviour
understanding patterns in the natural world
bravery
creating sounds
writing music
performing music
hosting lunches and dinners
helping people understand the nature of the universe
find a new home when the time is right
design/build/renovate a home
read new books
watch new films
listen to new music
go to art galleries
play new computer games
play board games with friends


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 06, 2019 7:24 am 
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Joined: Sat Jun 29, 2019 8:40 am
Posts: 6
Lesson 5. For this one I have written them as commitments to my fiancee.

Value / Commitment
1. I want to provide you with the things you need and the things you enjoy, whether on your own, with me, or with our friends; you shouldn't always have to ask nor do the research and planning. I will be curious about what makes you happy and healthy and I will take the initiative to bring such things into our life. When you tell me about something you find interesting I will actively listen and find out more.

2. I am willing to change; it's important to enjoy new experiences, both expanding on existing interests and seeking out new ones. It takes active, mindful participation in life activities to enact these changes (as opposed to just gointg through the motions of long-established habits). When I come across something that interests me I will take the time to explore it, instead of assuming my life is already complicated enough and therefore I don't have the time or the energy. Expanding my horizons is a source of energy, not a chore!

3. When our relationship is strong we are affectionate and sensual with each other, and vice versa. I love it when we are close and warm together, when our scents mingle, when we stroke each other's skin. When the mood is right this sensuality opens the way to arousal, to intimacy and sexual pleasure, to satisfaction and strength.

4. "Mens sana in corpore sano" - I'm proud of how we are putting this into practice as part of our daily routine (health supplements, meditation, exercise, stretching, care in our diet, looking after our skin, teeth and hair) and how we are taking an active interest in learning how we can make food, wine, activity and self-care all part of a holistic plan to have a long and happy life together. This is more than lip-service, this is putting health at the center or of our lives and our relationship.

5. I want to create art with words - novels, short stories and poetry have always been my vision but I'd like to explore plays, screenplays, lyrics and in fact any format I can discover! I'm going to make writing, researching and learning about writing part of my daily routine, with a strong focus on truthful characters and genuine communication.

6. Our home is beautiful. Thank you for transforming it, in the face of some stiff resistance from me! I understand (at least, I understand better) that we need to keep evolving our home, whether in small ways, like buying new towels, or really big ones, like buying and renovating a whole new place. I'm very proud of, and grateful for, your imagination and judgement in how to do this. I promise to keep an open mind about changes, to provide practicality and structure when necessary, and to try to grow my own faculties for making our home a happy, comfortable and inspiring place to live.

7. Money is important, not for its own sake, but for the effect it has on our lives, for the things it enables us to do and the things it forces on us. I promise I will keep working at understanding better how we can manage our money, and I promise to communicate sensitively and meaningfully about what we need to do (no moaning or doom-saying!)

8. I want to help others through charity work. We are all part of a greater whole that is our society, and spending time and effort on that is something I'm only just starting to realize is important.

9. The next generation carry our hopes and dreams into a future beyond our own lifespans. We must nurture them, equip them with enquiring minds and confidence to build a great future for themselves and their own descendants. I'm still a bit nervous sometimes about the weight of expectation and responsibility for our godchildren, but I also love spending time with them and teaching them how to become. One day we'll be doing this for our own children and that will be the most amazing endeavour to share with you.

10. Our friends and our families are important parts of our lives. They are not always easy to deal with but the relationships we have with them are long-lasting and valuable. I will work on these relationships, I will be honest about what's working and what isn't, and I'll try to make these a source of strength in our lives - even when those we love are having problems and we need to help them.

11. My career has been a part of my life for nearly 20 years. I haven't always taken it as seriously as perhaps I should. It has provided us with security and stability in financial terms. At times, it has allowed me to grow in positive ways; at other times, it has provided an excuse and an escape from responsibility for living life to the full. From now on, I promise to take control of my professional life and make sure it works for us, balancing how we need it to be now and what we need to develop for our future.


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 01, 2019 3:34 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jun 29, 2019 8:40 am
Posts: 6
Lessons 6 and 7: action plan for the 11 items listed in lesson 5.

1. Weekly reminder on Saturday morning to talk about such things and plan for the following weekend

2. Weekly reminder on Sunday morning to spend a few minutes reflecting on what new things I've learned in the past week, and what further steps I will take to investigate what comes next

3. Always (unless not appreciated on the night!) cuddle before sleeping, being aware of how my wife is feeling in that moment and being generous and understanding of what she wants

4. Daily routine of supplements, exercise, diet, meditation; monthly reminder to thing about how we are doing and what we might want to enhance; 6-monthly health check

5. Spend a couple of hours every week on lessons / writing, make notes of ideas, think about using techniques to build characters

6. Put things away where they are meant to be, never say "no" immediately to any new idea (ask questions!) and spend a few minutes every month thinking of ideas to make the place even better.

7. Weekly update of finance tracking; monthly overall finance check. Keep putting future expectations into plan and communicate honestly and gently about what we need to do to stay in good financial health.

8. Charity trusteeship; look into volunteering.

9. Arrange to see godson around once a month if possible; put aside a few minutes every week to think about things he'd be interested in; make sure to actively listen to what he's interested in when I do spend time with him.

10. Build regular efforts to stay in touch with friends. Once a year, spend time thinking about relationships that have changed and decide how to approach them in the future.

11. Each quarter spend time thinking about current and future work situation and take at least one action each time (e.g. starting a new training course, asking for a raise, going to an interview).


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 06, 2019 10:01 am 
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Recovery Coach

Joined: Thu Apr 29, 2010 8:07 pm
Posts: 3846
Location: UK
Hello HL
remember saying
Quote:
It has taken me about 12 months to realize that I need to change through activity/training,


recent activity or lack of it begs the question do you really want change and what are you prepared to do to achieve it?
perhaps you are working on yourself but not posting
perhaps RN is not the tool for you
I do not need answers but suggest you ask yourself
what ever you choose , 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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