Day 40. Some observations & advice, especially to newer guys
by wentlyman39 days
Here I am. Day 40. Things are going well; school is stressful and still looking for work but I have great support from my friends and family and I am staying positive. I woke up this morning and had to remind myself that today was a milestone because I had honestly forgotten how long it had been. After thinking for a bit, I’d like to share some things that come to mind in thinking about my last 40 days of nofap. Those new to nofap pay close attention because a lot of this stuff I couldn’t find or didn’t want to admit when I was first starting out.
There are good days and bad days. Good days, you feel positive and secure. In control. These days are not random. They are the result of you setting yourself up for success. They are you putting forward the effort to organize a day that will satisfy you. What makes you happy, or feel successful? Achievements, setting goals and achieving them, connecting; whatever sounds like a good day to you, find the time to do that. Sometimes it’s as small as getting through all of your classes, or a full day of work. That is an achievement, and good for you for getting through it. You’re in control, and that means you can steer yourself in any direction you choose, so pick one that will make you happy.
Bad days. They will happen. When things are all piling up and starting to snowball into one big weight on your shoulders. And it can feel like the one thing in life that could give you a no cost, no fuss great feeling about yourself--good old fappin--is now the one thing you want the most. Don’t listen to that. Bad days will come, and when they do you have to remind yourself of the reason(s) that you started this crazy journey in the first place. Especially in the early days, I was constantly reflecting on why I was refraining from PMO (porn, masturbation, orgasm) to keep myself focused on my goals and what I had to gain from this experience.
If you are having a bad day, take a breath, recommit, and start having a good one. You can relapse, feel like complete crap, remind yourself why you are doing this, and put another solid effort into nofap.
Learn from your mistakes. What makes you struggle? What works for you? What doesn’t? Listen to your body and observe your characteristics and reactions. Organize a routine that works for you.
Think positive. Don’t focus on what you can’t have anymore (PMO). Instead keep your energy focused on what you have to gain. What you are getting out of this experience. More self-control? Better understanding of yourself? Kicking an addiction? Becoming a better person? Becoming a better potential partner? Improving your sexual performance? Whatever it is, you won’t get there unless you work at it and work through the bad days.
You can’t lie to yourself. You might want to browse some more risque subreddits or webpages or look up videos that will take your mind places that you know are not good for your commitment to nofap. But deep down you know that you are not helping your own situation. You can’t lie to yourself. You know if you are doing something you don’t want to do. And everyone is here to help you.
Try to find support in other people. For most of us, that means relying on /r/NoFap and its dedicated users to give us inspiration, advice, and distractions. These people are your friends. They know what you’re going through and can empathize with your pain. Ask them for help, make jokes, talk about things that are important and mundane. I am lucky enough to have some close friends that I have been open to about my nofap. None of them understand my commitment to the extent that I have talked about it on here but they don’t need to. The important thing is that they understand my commitment is important to me and they support me on that. They make jokes about it sometimes too, but if you can’t laugh at yourself sometimes, what can you do?
In the early days of my nofap, I couldn’t stop thinking about sex. Every part of the human body, and everything that could be done to it. I stopped cold turkey one evening after I had had enough of the PMO cycle that was taking me nowhere. And so, my body needed time to react and adjust. Yours will too. You are going to have excess energy, sexual and otherwise, that you are going to need to channel into other ways than masturbation. Find a way to channel it. Exercise is a great one. When I couldn’t stop my mind from obsessing over my arousal, I would do 10 push ups. Simple as that. After ten push ups, I would find my heartrate was a little faster, I was thinking clearer, and I had more energy to start whatever was next in my day. Somedays I did between 50 and 100 push ups. Some of those sets were back to back when my scumbag brain was really acting up. Somedays I did none. You have to be willing to work with your body. It is not the enemy.
Take the time to individualize your experience with nofap. Nobody knows how and why I use porn and masturbation more than I do, and I decided that giving up masturbation wasn’t good enough. When I masturbated, I was funneling my sexual desire back into myself and creating scenarios in my mind that led nowhere for the real me. Porn was another way of doing the same thing. I want to be the guy who gets to do that filthy stuff with real people, again and again, and that means that I dropped porn and masturbation both. But that doesn’t have to be your experience. Perhaps porn is affecting you poorly, or messing with your head, or sexual performance. Or maybe its the masturbating, too much or if it’s interfering with other aspects of your health/wellbeing/lifestyle. For me it was both. I was numbing myself to real sexual experiences because I was so focused on satisfying myself. What I’m trying to say is take the time to really figure out what your concerns are and why you want a change in your life. Define what nofap means, as a commitment, for you. For me, is is refraining from masturbation, porn, and related self-pleasure (edging, etc.) for the sake of waiting to share that with someone else and to encourage me to think more clearly about sex in reality.
Things will get easier. Where I am now, my life is still stressful and I have a ton of responsibilities that I am juggling. That hasn’t changed. What has changed is the way that I deal with that stress and decompress because I don’t think PMO is a good way to relieve my stress anymore given what it takes from my life. I found other things that satisfy me and replaced it. And now, I honestly haven’t thought about masturbating or porn in days. If you are firm with yourself and give your body/mind time to adjust, I’m convinced that there is nothing you can’t accomplish.
You will, despite your best efforts, likely stumble onto porn sometimes. This is the internet. Just click out of it and go about your day. The important thing to remember is your intention. Did you mean to find that? If not, you’ve done nothing wrong. If so, you need to recommit yourself and work harder. For added difficulty, I am trying to steer clear of media that demeans women in general because, like porn, I don’t like what it has to say about them, ie. they are only worth what you think of their body. But that type of media if flippin everywhere, which means I fail a lot. But I remind myself why I am refraining from it and move along.
I’m sure there are more things I could add but this is plenty to think about for now. Lastly, I would like to thank everyone past and present on /r/NoFap who has supplied articles or submissions that I have learned from, responded to, and