One week since caffeine

Wednesday, May 20th.

That was when I had my last Mountain Dew.

The only day I had a major headache was last Friday, two days later.

Apart from that, the only symptoms I’ve noticed have been feeling extra tired. I’ve been sleeping ten hours or more most nights.

My withdrawal symptoms may be relatively minor because I’ve been going easy on myself. I’ve been letting myself have soda every day, just not caffeine.

If you’re thinking of quitting caffeine, I’d recommend doing it at a time when you can sleep in every day, especially for the first week or so.

I still don’t feel very energetic, but it’s only been a week. I do feel less irritable, though.

Overall, I’m glad I quit.

I’ll be even more glad when I stop feeling so tired.

Fear of Discomfort?

Why is it so hard to quit things I know are bad for me?

Maybe just because I don’t want to be uncomfortable.

I know if I ever want to achieve anything worthwhile, I’m going to have to leave my comfort zone.

But it’s so comfortable there!

I’ve let my body call the shots for too long.

It’s time to put my spirit in charge.

It’s holding me back

My porn addiction.

Yup, it’s still there.

I don’t talk about it much.

I’m sure it’s part of the reason I feel like I don’t deserve a better life.

I relapse.

I feel bad about myself.

I relapse again to try to feel better.

That’s the thing. In the moment it feels good.

After a few relapses I start becoming numb to the shame. Like wading out into cold water. At first it’s shocking. Painful. Until you get used to it.

Then I get lazy for a while.

And there’s the part that doesn’t even want to quit. The part that enjoys it. It’s like eating an all-candy diet. It’s terrible for you, but it tastes good in the moment.

Self-Sabotage

I’ll quit doing something.

Something I know isn’t good for me.

I’ll quit for days. Weeks. Months, sometimes.

Then I’ll go back to it. Like a dog to its vomit.

Yum.

One example is Mountain Dew.

I know it’s not good for me.

I’ve quit many times. Sometimts for months.

Then I’ll go back.

Sometimes I’m tired. I didn’t sleep well, long enough, got up too early, etc.

Other times I’ll crave it for no apparent reason. Even after months away.

I just want a taste.

A taste won’t hurt.

Of course, it’s never just one.

Tomorrow I’ll want another.

I’ve been sucked back in.

Why do I do this?

I’d weigh half as much if not for the sugar water.

It’s unhealthy.

It makes me feel bad long term.

So why do I do it?

Especially after so much time away?

Job security is an illusion

Boss dropping employee down a hidden trap doorI’ve had a lot of jobs. Most of which I’ve hated.

I know I’m not alone there.

Most of us will stay in jobs we hate because we think they’re secure. As long as we keep showing up the money will keep flowing.

Most employment is at-will. That means you can quit any time you like. For any reason. Or no reason. I’ve done that plenty of times.

It also means you can lose your job at any time. Maybe you showed up late one too many times. Sick one too many days. Your car broke down too many times.

Maybe the company just can’t afford to pay all of it’s employees anymore. Or they just don’t want to.

Maybe you’re being replaced by someone from China. Or India. Or a robot.

As long as you work for someone else, you’re placing your future in their hands.

Is that secure?

Porn addiction

XXX

She knew I’d had problems with it before.

She asked me about it directly .

I was ashamed. I didn’t want to admit I’d done it AGAIN.

So I lied.

Eventually the truth came out. She could accept that I’d slipped again. She couldn’t accept my dishonesty. That’s why she left me.

My addiction started years before I met her. Someone had shown me some dirty magazines, then suggested I get some of my own. At first I said no. Eventually my curiosity got the better of me.

It became a cycle. I’d buy a few magazines. Hold on to them for a while. Then throw them out in disgust. What had I become?

I’d be good for a while. Eventually I’d be drawn back in.

After several years I went back to church. I tried to stay invisible. Eventually the Bishop asked to meet with me. I told him everything.

I started checking in with him once a week. That seemed to do the trick. Eventually I got a Temple recommend. I did baptisms for the dead a few times.

After a while I stopped going to church. I fell back into old habits. Then I met her.

After we got married it was easier not to indulge. At least at first. Life became stressful, and I wasn’t good at communicating. I started acting out when she wasn’t around.

We moved. I resolved to quit once and for all. I went to the Bishop and confessed. He wanted me to get counseling, and said he would pay for it. He also said I needed to confess to my wife.

Confessing to her that first time was hard. I was sure she would leave me. She was hurt. But my confession helped us grow closer. I promised not to lie to her again.

I was good for three years after that. It didn’t seem hard.

We moved a few more times. Life got more stressful. I gave in to my urges. I was so ashamed.

Then she asked. I forgot my promise. I lied.

I confessed to the Bishop, but not to her.

We started marriage counseling. We became closer than ever. But something was in the way. So I told her.

I thought it would be like before. Our marriage would be stronger than ever. I couldn’t have been more wrong.

For six months she struggled. Eventually she decided to separate.

Why am I telling you all this? Because I’m not the only one. A LOT of men in the Church have this problem. My guess is around half. You’re not alone. Far from it.

There are a lot of single brethren out there who are addicted to pornography. Get it out of your lives. Do whatever you have to in order to be clean.

Then there are the married brethren. I’m not singling you out to shame you. I’m singling you out to warn you. You could lose everything. You don’t want that. Be open with your wives. Do whatever you need to do to save your marriages. I hope it’s not too late for you.

Ask Heavenly Father for help. Meet with your Bishop as often as you need to. Get marriage counseling. Go to addiction recovery meetings. Do what must be done.

If you slip, BE HONEST.

You may think you’re sparing her feelings, but you’re really betraying her trust.