What is the difference between wanting to stop versus needing to stop? My thoughts after 45 days.
Why does it seem that some people are so successful at no fap over long time periods while others struggle through multiple relapses and resets? That question has really been bugging me lately. The cold factual no fap statistics as well as all the sad stories of relapse have had me terrified that I myself might never be able to successfully live PMO free. Then it finally hit me like a bolt of lightning…. There are many Fapstronauts here that earnestly and truly do WANT to break their PMO addiction. But I know with every fiber of my personal being that I NEED to break mine. That distinction is very important; the subtle difference between WANTING to accomplish something versus NEEDING to accomplish something has long been regarded as a key factor in personal goal attainment.
If you have found yourself seriously struggling to fight off the urges to relapse or if you have relapsed one or more times and are growing discouraged, then I urge you learn to channel the incredible power difference between a WANT and a NEED. Let me be clear, regardless of what initially brought you here to no fap in the first place, you can use the power of your own brain to develop a personal NEED to stop PMO. The burning NEED to stop PMO will be so much more effective than a mere “desire” to accomplish your 90 day (or whatever) goal (desire is a synonym of WANT).
We have all no doubt heard of a losing sports team coach who in the process of the post game interview described the winning team as WANTING it more on that particular day “They wanted it more than we did”. However, sports studies have shown that when a team has their backs against the wall in a playoff race or a tight situation where they NEEDED to win, more often times than not, a team with a desperate burning NEED will emerge as the victor. Successful coaches and leaders learn to artificially stimulate that key difference to help them consistently achieve goals.
Here is another example of what I am talking about. An estimated seventy five million Americans say that they WANT to lose weight. Weight loss in America has become a Sixty Billion dollar a year industry and it has continued to grow despite the down economy. Yet despite all this self professed DESIRE to lose weight, we as a country are now fatter than ever. Why is this? Because WANT and DESIRE (desire is a synonym of want) rarely translate into successful long term goal attainment. We may have decided to go on a diet because we WANTED to lose a few pounds before summer vacation or because we WANTED to fit into our clothes better etc. yet we often relapse directly into a hot fudge sundae or an extra large pizza and pitcher of beer because there is still a part of us that “likes” that greasy food or “likes” that satisfied feeling of a full stomach (like is another synonym of the word WANT). We are fighting against our own inertia and conflicting internal desires. However, several studies on weight loss success have also proven that those who begin a diet immediately after being told by a doctor or other reputable authority figure that they NEEDED to lose weight are many times more successful. The only difference was the study participants own mental frame of reference at the start of the diet. They thought that they really did NEED to lose or there would be dire consequences, so they were so much more motivated to succeed the then those who started by WANT or DESIRE alone.
So, if you are here because no fap seemed like an interesting experiment to try then please do not be discouraged if you relapse and continue to struggle from time to time. It is perfectly normal for you to be conflicted and challenged if your current WANT and DESIRE to no fap is not yet an urgent NEED. But if you truly know that you NEED to quit PMO if you truly WANT to succeed, then you can learn to amp up that inner feeling, create that burning NEED to quit and to never fap again until the temptation to relapse passes each and every time it happens.
You can easily use the immense power of your own brain to convert a casual WANT or DESIRE into a burning NEED in order to increase you probability of no fap success. One fairly easy way to accomplish this is to channel the incredible power of fear (even if it is artificially created) to help you. Go to the library and grab a copy of Personal Power by Tony Robbins or similar self help books as an excellent primer on how to do this in detail.
Here is a very basic example, pretend that you are currently struggling badly with relapse issues, thoughts and feelings. But like most people, you probably also fear being caught in the actual act of PMO by friends, family, or strangers. So you could harness that fear for your own benefit by moving your computer into a public room, installing a filter like k9 with your spouse or parents holding the keys to the logs, only use your bathroom or the shower area with the bathroom door unlocked, go to sleep with your bedroom door unlocked and your window shades open etc. By being creative, even someone with a mere DESIRE or WANT to complete no fap can develop and harness the same mental burring NEED to succeed that virtually guarantees eventual success!
Best wishes to all.