Age 29 - My brain's gone back to a simpler, happier existence
April 20, 2012 - Finished my reboot last month. Unreal...life feels so ALIVE now!
- Age: 29
- Reboot Period: Variable; 2-phase reboot.
- Phase 1: Approx. 90 days no Porn.
- Phase 2: 25 days No PMO
- ED: No
- Started looking at porn in early teens - the usual, late night cable, etc. nothing major
- College: occasional to regular Internet porn. Sometimes short sessions, 20 minutes, sometimes an hour, not longer.
- Grad School: Habitual quick 15 minute sessions, 'pressure relief' I'd name it.
:: Reboot - Phase 1 ::
Duration: Approximately 3 Months
At this point I didn't know what a reboot was. After graduating I had much more leisure time, which for me meant more time away from the computer and back to enjoying sports. I immersed myself in Triathlons, Marathons, and Yoga. I joined teams and connected with people. Approximately three months passed without looking at porn. There was just no time and I didn't feel a need for it.
:: Reboot - Phase 2 ::
Duration: 25 days
After the season was over I had some downtime and started looking at porn again, 'just for kicks'. I'd enjoy it, but something always nagged me, like something wasn't right about this habit. Unfortunately, I could never deduce any concrete reason why porn was bad for me. So I'd go back to it for a cheap thrill. I spent about a month with it being a regular habit, and then I began to escalate to longer sessions and edging for up to two hours. The second month was spent in this state.
Then while browsing Psychology Today I found your Cupid's Poisoned Arrow articles. The neuroscience fascinated me. That led me to deeper study and to your site. I began a reboot in March. It lasted 25 days, I tested, and found the rewiring complete. My thoughts about that period:
-First week was the most difficult - in terms of urges to look again
-Definite ups and downs in mood, libido, and energy levels, very erratic
-Having active hobbies and connecting with people was key.
-This made the reboot much easier
After 25 days I really felt the biological need to release, so I did - without any porn or fantasy. It felt great, and there was no chaser effect afterward, and zero urge for porn. Life after the reboot is uncanny, the brain really is rewired. My vitality is through the roof. I no longer feel any urge, like there's nothing to resist. I know the neural pathway for porn must still exist, so I remain vigilant, but I'm busy enjoying life so there are no worries. So I declare my reboot a success. It's been over three weeks now since. I'm more aware now than ever of all life's pleasures, great and small. The difference is astounding.
August 25th, 2012
I just wanted to let you know it's been months now since my reboot and life's been good! What surprised me is that the brain continues to change subtly long after the reboot. It's like my brain's gone back in time to a simpler, happier existence.
I keep to my same hobbies of endurance sports, technology, and yoga, but all with a passion like never before. I also just landed a new job and promotion at my company as a software developer.
February 10, 2013
I just wanted to let you know that with all the time that has passed, I'm still continuing to see improvements. When I look at all the smaller, subtler improvements taken together, what I see is the brain's dopamine regulation totally rebalanced. What struck me is that after the reboot, where there was no more urge to look at porn, some abnormal stress reaction was still present. After stressful situations, I would feel the urgent need for either video games, or junk food. It was strong, very much the 'gotta have it' feeling you've described in your videos. Once I'd get it, I'd typically lose myself in it, and overindulge. This happened less and less as time went on after the reboot. Now it's ceased completely, it feels like executive control has been fully restored. I'm passionate about many things in life, but I don't feel overwhelmed by urges anymore. I feel, but the 'think about it' response always kicks in. Amazing...thanks again!
I like listening to your radio shows and dropping in your site from time to time. Recently I heard talk in one about 'normies' - who after a reboot use porn normally. My personal feeling on that is that, while it may be theoretically possible, in practice it's a really bad idea. I find that Internet porn is too engineered to override satiety and cause excess, and cause addiction. The comparison with enjoying an occasional drink doesn't stand up for me. I personally recommend that those who reboot stay away from the stuff, I don't think any good can come of it. To quote one of your articles. As the late Douglas Adams wrote:
"Human beings, who are almost unique in having the ability to learn from the experience of others, are also remarkable for their apparent disinclination to do so."'
[Reboot account via email]