I had been fapping since my early childhood and watching porn on and off since my early twenties. Few years ago I recognized that porn was a problem for me and that I was probably a porn addict. This habit was controlling my life. I had trouble getting things done.
I avoided uncomfortable tasks. I forced myself to lead a double life, appearing hard-working and responsible on the outside, but always feeling like I’m hiding something. There were a couple of times when I tried to quit porn, and 2 years ago I managed to stay porn-free for a couple of months, but at that time I still continued masturbating and reading erotic stories. While I did experience positive effects like less social anxiety at that time in my porn-free period, I eventually fell back into my porn habit. In retrospect, I have observed that there was a connection between fap and porn in my case. When I was tired or stressed or rejected, I fapped many times, explaining it that I’m just taking care of myself, but then I wanted more, and very often I would eventually switch to porn to keep my erection and instant artificial pleasure going…This continued on and off until 3 months ago when I typed NoFap on my keyboard. At that time I thought that NoFap was some backwards extremist medieval bullshit trying to restrict people from their natural needs. But I was so frustrated that I decided to give it a try anyway and sign up for the 90-day experiment and I have completed the 90 days.
What did I observe as outcomes of my 90-days PMO-free experiment?
- I’m no longer trying to hide that I’m selfish.
- I’m no longer trying to please everybody.
- I’ve pissed off a few people who were taking advantage of me.
- I’m less afraid to say NO and I’m saying NO more often.
- There are times when I feel very frustrated, sad, angry, depressed, and I don’t know how to handle my emotions.
- I’ve become more assertive and it does work in most cases.
- I’ve become more honest.
- I have more time.
- I’m getting more things done.
- I’m actually getting some projects done few days ahead of the last-minute deadline.
- I don’t give in to sudden cravings and urges so fast.
- I had my first scientific journal article published and accepted
- I’ve become a little bit more social again, and sometimes I’m surprised that I actually enjoy the socializing
- I spent more than one week together with my female friend (that would have been unthinkable one year ago).
- I feel like I don’t need to pretend anything.
- I feel MUCH more self-respect
How did my body react?
There were a couple of 2-week cycles, for 2 weeks I would have a boner every day and strong sexual urges, and then for another 2 weeks nothing (flatline?). Sometimes I would see flashbacks of the porn that I watched in my dreams. During the last 30 days, I had a ‘wet dream’ two times. So my engine is still working and taking care of itself on its own natural schedule. I’ve been running a lot, and during the 90 days I’ve won a 5k race, completed a half-marathon (PR) and completed a marathon (also PR). So NoFap has not decreased my physical fitness, probably the opposite is true and my physical fitness has gone up.
What worked for me to get this far?
- Using porn-filters both on my PC (K9) and on my smartphone (SafeBrowser), and more importantly, accepting the blockers and filters as my good friends instead of trying to outwit and outsmart them. There was a couple of times when I caught myself sub-consciously typing words like “sex” or “make love” in my google search, and the porn filter gave me extra time to think about my urge and resolutely turn away.
- Running: I’ve replaced the self-pleasuring but destructive habit of fap and porn with a self-pleasuring but healthy habit of running. Running makes me feel connected with the nature and humanity, gives me time to organize my thoughts, helps me overcome my stress, and I always come back from a run with a peaceful mind and a positive feeling of accomplishment.
- Journal writing: In times of big stress and frustration, writing down my thoughts really helped me. By writing about my negative emotions, I took them out of my head and felt like I could breathe again.
- Measuring my results: Sometimes it made me happy just to see my counter and give myself a compliment on how far I have made it.
- Viewing the NoFap challenge as an experiment: Although religion is a part of me, the religious reasons for stopping fap didn’t click with me. I had the experience that in religious circles not watching porn and not masturbating is often taken for granted as something very basic and easy, just like brushing your teeth or washing your hands. Too often it’s still seen as a tabu, as something you need to deal with on your own.
On the other hand, taking NoFap as an experiment and a challenge has really clicked with my natural curiosity and competitiveness.
In the coming year from now I have two big goals: Defend my dissertation in a way that I can be proud of, and then walk the PCT. If I want my two dreams to become reality, there’s no room for my self-destructive habits of my past. Wasting my precious time and energy on porn is out of question. And for me personally fap/masturbation functioned as a trigger making me super vulnerable to porn, so fap is also out of question.
On the contrary, I feel like I need to break free from my general Internet addiction. I also need to work on my communication skills, and be more open to meeting new people both men and women (If I gather up my guts and courage, then I’ll take a ballroom dancing class for singles Sex is not out of question, but only when I’ll feel ready. I don’t feel quite ready yet and I don’t have any desire to have sex just to make some random person happy. There’s got to be more to it. I will know when my sexual reboot it is complete and if I find the right person, then I’ll be more ready than ever before.
To keep me on the path of becoming myself again, I’ve extended my experiment to one year. I like the one-year challenge because I’ve never ever done NoFap for more than a couple of months since I was at least 5 years old. I’m entering unmapped territory and I’m looking forward to new discoveries.