“What should I do when I get the urge to use porn?”
If you don’t have an answer to this question, you are setting yourself up for failure. Going “cold turkey” only works for so long. You need to have a strategy.
As I wrote about before, one of the reasons guys are successful at overcoming their porn addiction is by replacing the habit with another habit. Also, because the PMO (porn-masturbation-orgasm) habit is physical, your replacement habit should also be physical.
Below are 7 healthy habit ideas to replace the porn habit. I recommend testing a few of these habits to see what works best for you.
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Recovering Porn Addicts:
1. A short exercise routine.
I personally use this replacement habit. When I feel the urge to use porn, I immediately start my custom “craving-crushing” workout plan. When I started out, it was just 20 push-ups and 30 sit-ups (it did the job!) and now it’s grown to 7 minutes and is bit more involved. I’m writing a post on this right now, so look for it soon.
Find a quiet spot and meditate for 5 – 10 minutes. There are many different way to meditate. For me, I count each complete breath: Inhale slowly, exhale slowly – one. Inhale slowly, exhale slowly – two. People report a ton of benefits from meditating regularly, including decreased anxiety, lower stress and increased focus.
Tyler of Real Social Dynamics created a great introduction to meditation video that answers a lot of questions you might have:
And here’s another great article on Tiny Buddha: http://tinybuddha.com/blog/mindfulness-peace-blog/5-meditation-myths-and-the-benefits-of-starting-today/
Take a few days to learn by heart a simple yoga routine. For example, the sun salutation routine. Yoga improves flexibility, strength, concentration, blood-flow… all good things to help you on your journey. Note: youtube videos of yoga might lead to relapse. For straight guys, I’d recommend videos featuring a male teacher.
Here’s Rodney Yee’s version of the sun salutation:
Similar to yoga (and with comparable benefits), but with more focus on building core strength (abdominals). Want those six pack abs? This will help:
Personally, I would rather tattoo my eyelids than run a mile, but hey, it works for some people. When you get the urge, immediately lace up and go for a quick, 5-10 minute run.
Why some people love to run: http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/the-running-blog/2013/feb/05/why-we-love-to-run
These are also great help for overcoming a common related problem, performance anxiety.
7. Tai Chi.
I took classes in this a few years back and loved it. It’s very relaxing and really forces you to pay attention to your breath and body movements. After you learn the forms, you can do them on your own or along to a video.
Ok. So there’s 7 habits to test out.
After experiencing a craving and using one of the habits below, afterwards ask yourself: Did it work? Do I still feel the urge to use porn? Is the urge less than before?
Find which habit works best for you. Everybody will have different results. The point is to find what best helps you to replace the PMO habit within the habit chain.
On the topic of classes:
For many of these items on the list, you may not know where or how to start. For Yoga, Pilates, or Tai Chi, I highly recommend joining a class to learn the exercises.
There are many reasons why joining a class will help you with your recovery:
-You will get direct feedback from an instructor while learning the proper forms and postures.
-It will get you out of the house (and away from the computer!)
-It will help keep you busy (a major reason for relapse is boredom!)
-You will meet new people and have real-life interactions.
-It will push you outside your comfort zone. Most guys aren’t comfortable with the idea of taking a Yoga class. By stepping out of your usual patterns, you’re giving yourself a chance to grow even more.
-You will meet potential partners. One of the nice things about Yoga and Pilates classes are that they are usually mostly women. And those women are usually fit, healthy and interested in self-development. Many serious and casual relationships I’ve been in have been with women I’ve met in Yoga or Pilates classes.
-It will exercise your willpower muscle. It’s difficult to go to class once a week, let alone 2 or more times per week. See how many classes you can go without skipping and improve your self-discipline.
I commissioned a professionally recorded mp3 to help guys who have cravings for porn.
It’s called “The Craving Crusher”. Yeah, cheesy. I know.
You can download it here for free:
==>> Craving Crusher mp3 <<==
Have other ideas for healthy replacement habits? Please share them in the comments below!