Age 28 - 90 days: Important realizations, extraordinary benefits
Well, the time has certainly flown by... but who I am today, and who I was 90 days ago... there's a huge difference. I guess for years, I had always known porn & masturbation were a problem for me, but they both just seemed so normal and natural... everyone jokes about it, and porn is so easily accessible and the women are so hot... I never would have thought before that the two processes are right alongside any other addiction to drugs or alcohol.
Watching the Gary Wilson Ted Talk, and seeing some of the YBOP videos was tremendously eye opening--if you are new to the community and haven't yet viewed them, do yourself a favor and open them in a new tab right now [They over in the sidebar --->]
For me, NoFap was too enticing not to try. Im in my late 20's and have never been in love, and until recently had no idea why. I have been with about the same number of women as my age, and yet only a handful were women I was in relationships with (no relationship lasting longer than 6 months). The rest, I barely remember their names or even their faces at this point. It would have been hard to face it at the time, but I realize now I am not only addicted to sex, but basically love & romance too, and any measurable amount of affection from a woman.
What I believe led to these addictions now is emotional neglect from my mother my whole life. A mother can be physically present, and provide you with clothes and food, but if she is not there to nurture you emotionally, and is always concerned with her own relationships and goals first, a child can feel essentially robbed of a childhood, and feel that his needs are simply "not worth it". Chemically, this can also cause an imbalance in dopamine regulation, as well as oxytocin regulation (the love/bonding chemical), hence why I never really say I love you to anyone. Here is the link to the scientific paper where I made this connection: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3319675/
These realizations came well into no fap, I may have already been halfway through. The increased confidence, boost in energy, greater concentration, all these "super powers" are definitely true! But I imagine they would be taken away quite easily with a single fap. The good stuff, the realizations as to why we fap like its a drug we use to feel better, those come later, and you must be patient and you must have faith. Its just like diet... if you have slowly put on weight over the last 10-15 years, you can't expect that you will shed it all in a matter of weeks.
I truly endorse the 90 day challenge to anyone out there struggling with a feeling that his sexual urges need to be met in order to escape his unconscious fears, anxiety, and loneliness. You might be thinking, "Whats the big deal, I just like porn and jerkin' it!", but look deeper... when are you doing this? What thoughts occur in your mind before hand? I can't speak for everyone, of course, there are exceptions to every rule... but getting a better handle on where your urges come from is the best way to nip any addiction in the bud. Otherwise, you may conquer one addiction, but the source of the feelings remain and you simply move onto something else. In my first few weeks of NoFap, I was doing awesome--but its because I had a cute ex gf that I was hanging around telling her everything. Little did I know, my addiction was already manifesting itself into being attached to being around her, and feeling the high of her closeness and interest in me. There is an excellent book that helps to unblur the lines between whether or not you truly love someone and whether or not you are just using them on some level to feel better about yourself. I haven't even finished it yet, but what I have learned has been phenomenal: http://www.amazon.com/Love-Addiction-Changed-Romance-Intimacy/dp/1592857337
On a lighter note, the positive benefits of no fap for me have been extraordinary. I have so much less fear and doubt--this is especially more apparent at work. I sometimes work with very high ranking officials, and yet I don't feel so anxious that I'm going to screw something up anymore--I just float along confidently and nothing goes wrong. I take less crap from people too, and have become a much bigger advocate of myself. This is also shown itself in terms of cleaning up my house. I feel like I have always been a slob, but really its just that the mind is so preoccupied with feeding its addiction, you let things like vacuuming and laundry and buying decent food from the grocery store fall by the wayside. Now, I'm cleaning parts of my house I hadn't in 4+ years, and making green smoothies, and all kinds of just great stuff in terms of my home life. I've stopped trying to have sex with some of the women that are my friends but that I'm very attracted to, and it's lead to new understanding about who they are--maybe before I was just too busy fantasizing about them to listen? I now attend meditation classes, jam with friends, make more art, WORK OUT LIKE CRAZY, joined a kickball team, booked a trip to Europe... I mean the list goes on and on people, I can't tell you what a difference there is in my life. You need to take this seriously if you want to advance confidently in the direction of your own dream (Dr. Wayne Dyer)