Afraid to quit drinking? You’re not alone. In part 1, I reviewed some very common fears about quitting drinking or about moderating your drinking. I suggested that there’s a deeper reason behind all of these common fears: Our fear of change.
See, there’s a voice in all of us that tells us that we can’t do something, that when we think about doing something new or different, gets nervous, anxious, or scared. This voice tells us the same “emotional truths” over and over again. It’s trying to protect us from re-experiencing hurts from our childhoods but it’s not helping us anymore as adults.
In fact, it’s keeping us stuck. That voice is known as the ego. But what’s up with the ego? And why is it so important to look at what the ego’s up to if we want to change our drinking?
I always joke that I had to go to seminary to learn to drink.
In the fall of 2003, I moved across the country to go to Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California. I was anxious and scared but also thrilled to be starting graduate school. I was starting a theology degree and wanted to dive in. So what did I do? I signed up a a Biblical Greek intensive; I for the next 2 1/2 months, I studied nothing but Greek. All the time.
It was as exciting and brutal as it sounds. By the end of the term, I was exhausted and stressed as my perfectionism had been in full swing for months on end. I didn’t know it at the time, but I was on the hunt for some way to relax, to not feel so damn wound up all the time.
Christmas, 2003. Enter Johnny Walker, stage left. Thus began my long, storied history with alcohol. It took me years and years, but I finally learned to change my relationship with drinking.
I tried to cut back so many times. Countless times. And each time, I was discouraged. I thought it was hopeless. But the real story?
Ever wonder why it's so damn hard to quit drinking? Or using? I drank alcohol almost daily for most of my adult life. I lost count of the times I tried to cut back or quit. I was having about 5 to 6 drinks per day,...
If you’re in recovery or trying to change a habit that isn’t working for you, you need to find ways of dealing with urges and cravings. That is, you need to become more aware of the thought patterns and feelings that led to you giving in to your desire to engage your habit. Whether it’s shopping, gambling, sex, pornography, eating, or using alcohol or drugs, you’re probably pretty familiar with the desire to engage that habit before actually acting on it; that feeling is called an urge or craving.
Cravings are important because they act as precursors to engaging our problematic habit or behavior. Cravings say, “Hey, we need to gamble/smoke/drink/watch porn right now!” We stay stuck in our habits because we listen to that voice without thinking. If we’re to change our habit, we need to find different ways of interacting with the thoughts and feelings associated with our cravings in order to avoid automatically giving in.
Overcoming porn addiction is no easy task. That online pornography is so widely available and accessible means that pornography is just a click away. That porn can be viewed anonymously makes it easy for its use to stay secret.
Many people struggle in isolation with overcoming porn addiction and they often don’t know where to start. Here are some of my most commonly used tools and tips that I share all the time with clients to help them kick their porn habit.