How to quit anything you are addicted to (porn, drugs, alcohol, etc.)

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Some people like marijuana, but I fell in love with it.

I would wake up, have a toke. Or a bunch of tokes. And continue throughout the day until I was ready to sleep at night when I'd have some bong hits before bedtime.

Every spare $100 I earned (and I earned a very good income for someone my age) went to pot, so to speak.

I smoked more than anyone I know or knew.

I smoked every waking hour from the time I was maybe 16 or 17 to about 24.

I want you to know that although marijuana wasn't for me physically addicting, I was extremely addicted to it.

Tried to quit? A number of times. Never lasted more than maybe 5 days.

The brain always rationalizes addictions. It would say, "one toke isn't going to hurt." You know the drill. Always ready with rationalizations.

I finally totally and completely quit.

I was a successful person and I knew that I didn't need or want this and quitting was inevitable.

When I quit, I never once ever had a single hit of marijuana.

It was very tough. Several months of flatlining in every way. No spark to life. Except that I had met this new girl and my attentions were focused on her. The fact that I knew she wouldn't want a marijuana addict as a boyfriend was the final impetus to me stopping although I didn't tell her that or mention my marijuana addiction.

Pretty much the day I met her was the last time I smoked. Because of her, I was able to refocus my life and not spiral down, relapse, etc.

More recently I gave up alcohol. I felt an emptiness in my life for several months. But I never had another drink. I wasn't an addict the way I was with marijuana, but I felt it was impeding my life and I would never go a day without 3 drinks at night sometimes 4 or even 5. I didn't like that feeling of always wanting more.

I think that all addictions are the same in the way quitting leaves you empty, low dopamine, and there is no way but plowing through. I think sexual addictions are tougher because of how deeply our brain is wired, which I learned here from Gary and Marnia and on YBOP.

But the key to quitting is always this: replace the addiction behavior with something else. I had my new girlfriend to focus on and this made quitting marijuana easy.

The young guys here who don't have a girlfriend and are quitting PMO -- they have it tough because they have to find a new behavior to replace the vacuum that PMO filled.

I've heard it put like this. You have a garden and there is a big old weed and you dig it up. Now there is a big old hole in your flower bed and you need to put something there or else another weed will sprout up there.

That is the biggest key: replacing the behavior and what it helped you with, the addiction behavior, with something else.

What does your addiction behavior do for you? In my case, marijuana helped me prevent boredom that would have been short term un-fun but long term would have been painful enough for me to make good positive changes in my life a lot sooner (like meeting women.)

If you are going to quit PMO or weed or alcohol, you need to find out what hole that will leave in your life and you need to consciously fill it. Choose something healthy, and don't let it become an addiction. I am spending far less time on the Internet now and that is opening up a space for new things that I'm excited about. I think this idea of positively doing something that takes the place of the old behavior is extremely key.

The guys who have recovered have found something new that replaces the PMO behaviors. Usually a relationship but I suppose not always. But something must replace it. If you are addicted to PMO, and you don't have a relationship, don't let that stop you from quitting. But your first order of business has to be to find something to replace the PMO time and whatever PMO was bringing you, or else relapse is almost inevitable.

Our thoughts are not to be believed.

When they tell us "it's okay, just a little peek" or whatever it is. That's why absolute behavior, quitting completely and totally, is the best way to quit porn, IMHO.

Those who succeed, and I've read a number of their accounts by now here, do so by quitting totally, completely, absolutely, 100%. They may possibly have a relapse but it is a very minor accidental one. Masturbation relapses are one thing, but "just a peek at some bathing beauties" or whatever, is quite another.

If you are quitting PMO that means you positively must NEVER EVER knowingly look at porn EVER EVER no matter what your brain tells you.

It's marvelous how people believe their minds. News flash: Thoughts lie.

If you are totally committed to quitting, you realize YOU WILL HAVE THOUGHTS THAT ONE LOOK IS OKAY and you will not look anyway. Thoughts lie. Your brain will tell you all SORTS of things and it's all LIES.

You simply think to yourself, "this is what emerson said would happen. My thoughts are lying to me." Then you throw some cold water on your genitals and go work out, or whatever it is. You change your environment, you do something that takes you away, even if it's 3 in the morning. Whatever it is and whenever, you REMOVE yourself from temptation at that moment.

That's what gets guys through this successfully. Your thoughts WILL lie and what happens then depends simply on this: Will you realize that your brain is lying to you, and will you remove yourself from temptation at that very instant?

I wrote about my quitting marijuana and alcohol today. These were *very* difficult but what I did was simply quit totally 100% and when I was tempted to have just one bong hit or one shot, I said to myself, "brain, you are lying again, you wonderful devious bastard" and I removed myself from temptation by going and doing something else.