Hi everyone. I try to make a good and complete guide for new (and old) members which is easy to follow step by step. To make this as good as possible please help and share thoughts, additional steps or additional videos!
I try to make it as short as possible if you have any questions about something just text me, write a comment or start a new topic to ask
As a general remark for the following guide, writing stuff down sometimes seems redundant because you already know it. But by writing something down for yourself, even if it is only a small note, it gets much more power and is easier to follow!
First step: General knowledge about your behavior (this will be needed in a next set of steps):
1) Where & When?
Most people have a certain time each day or certain places which trigger an urge. Figure out when these are and write them down. These are the times and places you need a good strategy for. (e.g. shower, office, bed // at night, when you come back from work…)
2) Save spots!
What are the times and places during day where you don’t get urges and where you are most focused on other stuff. These are the times / places where you can go to resist urges or think about stuff. (e.g. a public place, living room // after getting up, before going to bed…)
3) The past:
Think back; what do you remember from your past? What was good, what was bad. Which moments are stuck clearly in your mind? (e.g. bulling, lost someone, but also good times…)
4) The present:
What do you think about your present. What do you like, what do you wanna change? (e.g. unfocused, depressed, unmotivated, too much time on smartphone, obviously fapping…)
5) Goals for the future:
What do you wanna reach in life. What are important milestones? (e.g. finish studies, raising a family…)
6) Analyze your relapse
Don’t relapse deliberately but if you do, you could also use it do learn about your problem.
During! the relapse analyze and write down how you feel before starting to fap, what you were doing, when did the urge occur, how do you feel while fapping, how do you feel afterwards.
Second step: Changing your habits
You now know your habits, your past and your goals. This can now help in a first step to reduce the urges drastically!
- Never take any electronic device to a spot where you often have urges!
- Reduce the amount of time you spend on electronic devices during dangerous times (the once you determined before) as much as possible!
- Install a pornblocker on your computer (K9 is free and very good one). Send your password to an accountability partner and forget it.
- If you have to do activities that trigger you, do them either on a save spot or during a save time. (e.g. do your studies in the library or living room, take your shower at night when you are tired…)
- Change your negative daily habits (if you come home and the first thing is to watch TV, check your computer or smartphone -> replace that with coming home and reading a book, cooking or doing anything else you enjoy). Write a list where you state for example what you do as soon as you come home. Do this for all the bad habits you wanna change. Figure out when you are doing them and search something you can do instead. (You have to do this previous to the named time. It doesn’t work to go home and then think what you could do. You already have to know what you wanna do on your way back home or you will fall back into the old habit)
- It can help to plan your day. In one of the “save times” you can write yourself a plan for the next day with all the things you would like to do and should do. It helps to keep a productive cycle with less time for urges.
Third step: Rewiring your brain
- Write down your goal:
In a previous step you figured out what you wanna become. This is what should drive you forward in life.
Write this goal down and place it somewhere you won’t forget it. Best would be to pin it somewhere, where you can see it every day. It helps you to stay motivated and focused
- Writing a diary daily:
One of the most important parts! Write down all the things that come into your mind. These are the things that trouble your brain the most and some of them could be the problem of your addiction.
I recommend doing this daily (at least at the beginning). You can do it for yourself or publicly in the forum. Write down what you liked this day and what you would like to do differently the next day.
- Urge diary
If you get an urge, don’t get frustrated and panic. Calm down, go to a safe place and write down how you feel.
Why do you wanna watch a porn now?
What is the feeling you hope to get from it?
What is the feeling you would like to remove with it?
You are not watching porn because it is something really interesting or beautiful. You wanna hide a feeling!
- Figure out why:
The previous two points are a huge help to figure out why you need porn. It’s highly likely that you miss something in your life (often self-esteem, recognition or security. These are often related to problems happened in your past. Recall the list you wrote about the things you remember from your past).
As soon as you know what your problems are, you can start working on them. How you can work on these points depends on your past, your problem and your way of thinking.
Possibilities are asking in this forum, watching Youtube videos about your problem, talking with friends about it or if you have the option I really recommend a psychologist.
- Accountability partner:
Having someone around with whom you can share your problems is a huge deal! Telling your family/girlfriend/closest friend helps a lot but the step of telling them is often hard to do (and can, in some cases, lead to problems in your relation to them). Another great option is to join a chat group with people from this forum. There are already existing groups on Telegram (see appended links) or add people from this forum to your accountability list in the app. In general, the better you know the people, the stronger is the feeling of accountability.
- If you feel a lack of strength and motivation, join a challenge. This will give you the extra burst of motivation.
- Don’t panic after a relapse. It happens but it is important to get up and trying again.
- Don’t expect too much. No fap can change your life in a good way by giving you motivation, concentration and time to do important stuff but it’s not a magical cure for all your problems.
- Once you get to long counters I would recommend changing the way of using the streak counter. If you have a 40 days streak and you relapse it gets really hard to find the motivation to start from day 0 again. Other options are to count the number of porn free days per month or year or keeping track of the average time between the last 3 relapses.
- Never feel too save! After a longer period without urges it can be really hard to resist a suddenly occurring urge. Prevent that by knowing that the next urge could come every second.
- Figure out one mode that works for you. There are all options around, from no porn but masturbation is allowed, no porn & no masturbation but sex is allowed to no porn no masturbation no sex.
To choose the right one, listen to your heart. It will tell you the right way!
From personal experience I would recommend to not edge. Independent if it is during sex or during masturbation. The rest you have to choose on your own.
Helping pages / videos:
- Ted Talk why you should quit porn: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gRJ_QfP2mhU&t=2s
- Ted Talk about porn: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VU9v8h_OwcY
- Tons and tons of helpful videos from a porn addiction therapist: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCbqaPKeiNW6R6LECHwQkRug/featured
- Telegram group (English): https://t.me/joinchat/Bgu74xDhVeidrSFAp7EY2Q
- Telegram group (German): https://t.me/joinchat/Bgu74xH9LpZT39zH84Vxhw
Please help me to make this guide as good as possible! Comment with other helpful steps, links, Telegram groups and so on! With your experience, you can make the journey of other people easier!