5 Concrete Tips for Porn Addiction Recovery

Hi Tribers!   I (Alex) recently ran across a cool site: rebootblueprint.com and started to chat with Brian, the creator.  He was severely impacted by porn addiction and was able to overcome his addiction and get his life back on track.  On his site I saw this article and I thought it would really help the Tribe out.

 


5 Reasons Why I Succeeded In Recovering From Porn-Induced Erectile Dysfunction

I (Brian) am free! I haven’t used porn since April, 2011. That’s two years now that I’ve been completely free from a crippling ED-causing porn addiction.

I think there are two main reasons I have been successful:

  1. I eliminated habit triggers as much as possible.
  2. From the start, I had a game plan for contingencies.

Here are 5 concrete tips for how I accomplished this:

1. I replaced the porn habit.

Many guys try to quit porn cold-turkey and find it near impossible.  What many success stories have in common is that they replaced the habit with something else. This means when I got a craving to use porn, I would immediately start my contingency habit – in my case, a seven minute custom workout routine – I call it The Fapstronaut workout (catchy, no?).  At its most basic, it was simply 20 push ups followed by 30 sit ups. As the cravings became more and more sporadic (and I became fitter!), it turned into a longer/more fun workout (I’ll share it in an upcoming post).

Because the porn habit is physical, it’s also important to choose a physical replacement habit.  Until I write my own list, here is a link with some ideas for possible healthy replacement habits. I strongly recommend you choose a physical habit – otherwise, your cravings aren’t likely to be satisfied.

2.  I wrote a daily journal.  

Many guys choose to write a blog or online journal. But for me, I felt it was important to limit my time online so I chose to write an old-fashioned paper journal.  Every day, I wrote a few lines:  How many consecutive days I had gone without; How I felt that day on a scale of 1 to 10; If I had any temptations; and any other thoughts I had. It ended up being a kind of sub-journal to my real journal – just a few lines everyday about the challenge.  I highly recommend journaling as a healing practice and as a positive life habit in general.

3.  I had an accountability buddy.

My support buddy Dave was the saving grace of my recovery process. By having someone to talk about the cravings, the feelings of doubt, and especially the celebration when you reach a goal, you are much more likely to succeed.

The community aspect is one of the reasons why Alcoholics Anonymous is so successful.  Just knowing that you aren’t going through it alone makes you infinitely stronger. It’s really important to have someone with you who is going through (or has gone through) the same thing as you – check out the online community www.yourbrainrebalanced.com.

4. I kept motivated.   

During the really tough times, when I questioned whether it was all worth it, I reminded myself of the many reasons why I was doing it: getting back my libido; wanting to have strong, natural erections; wanting an anxiety free sex-life; wanting to stop being a slave to my lizard brain…  Also, reading about  other guys’ success stories and the benefits they felt from quitting helped a ton.

But, after relapsing around the 60-day mark a few times, I decided I needed to take massive action against my addiction.

I did what I coined Negative Reinforcement Charity (it might have a real name, but I can’t remember where I got the technique from).  Basically, I promised myself and my support buddy Dave that if I even so much as glanced at porn in the next 6 months, I would have to pay $500 to a charity I despise (in my case, the Church of Scientology — sorry Tom Cruise). Dave’s was a radical pro-Creationist charity.  And it worked. For those 6 months, the pain of giving away $500 to Scientology kept me in the clear. Dave too.

The trick is to make the charity amount large enough that it will be very painful to lose, but small enough that it won’t set you into financial trouble.   Note: I did this after I had made it a few times past 60 days without PMO.   I don’t think I would recommend trying this your first try quitting PMO. Unless you want to lose $500 bucks.

5. I made it easier on myself.   

Knowing that just seeing an image in a sidebar could trigger my urge to use porn, I installed a porn blocker to my browser and phone.  I used K9, which I recommend. It’s free and quite good at blocking – too good in fact, sometimes. Make sure you white-list your favorite inspirational recovery websites — www.yourbrainonporn.com and of course www.rebootblueprint.com — as they likely will be blocked for containing the word “porn”.  I set mine up with my accountability buddy Dave, who chose a password (he never told me in almost 3 years!) and I did the same for him.  That way, if I wanted to visit a blocked site, I would have to get the password from Dave – or find another way.

I also use an ad blocker, which eliminates many of the “hot babes” often found in sidebar ads.   Dave even went so far as to get a program that blocked all images (I think it was for google chrome?)  – a little extreme, but it worked for him.

If you’re worried about when other friends use your computer and question you about the blockers, you can always say that you have them in place to stay productive – which is, by the way, a pleasant unintended consequence.

About Brian

Brian overcame a long-standing addiction to Internet porn and fully recovered from serious porn-induced erectile dysfunction and performance anxiety. For more about Brian, see my story.

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