You are talented, beautiful, and... humble!
 
 
  Breaking Free Chizuk #1412  
 
 
In Today's Issue
   
Image of the Day: Just Be You
Daily Dose of Dov: How do I stay humble?
Q & A: Caught My 15 Year Old Watching Porn
12 Step Attitude: My 7th Mitzva T'midi
 
 
90 Day Journey
 
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Image of the Day
 

Being humble does not mean thinking less of yourself. It means thinking of yourself less often. But we must recognize our good qualities - and true humility demands giving credit to our Maker for those. 

Just Be You
 
Just Be You
Daily Dose of Dov
 
How do I stay humble?
 
How can I celebrate accomplishments without feeling pride?
 
By the.guard

Tomorrow I will iyH complete my first (hopefully of many) 90 days clean bH. My problem is that every time I start having accomplishments in these areas I start to feel like I overcame the problem and start slacking off and before long end up back @ square 1.

My first question is what is the proper way (if any) to celebrate this accomplishment?

My second question is how can I knock into my heart a sense of humility and the feeling that this is only the first steps in this journey in times of acheivement?


GYE Responds:

To stay humble when you have accomplishments, just remember the last time you acted out.

Always remember to give the credit to Hashem. We don't deserve any credit, because He is helping us. The more we internalize this and really believe it, the more we will be zoche to see His help.

There is no need to celebrate really, even if you succeed in staying clean for the long term. You need to realize that these are self-destructive behaviors. Do you celebrate that you didn't shoot yourself in the head for 90 days? :-)

Hatzlacha!


Dov Responds:

Question 1-

It's very simple. In your case, I'd never celebrate it. You see from your past that it's really not an 'event' at all. The 91st day is exactly like the 27th day, etc, etc. Reaching the milestone of 30 or celebrating '90' is feeding into a false belief that day 30 is meaningful of it's own right. It's obviously not. Just like reaching 30 years of age...what's the difference to your body or mind or neshoma at that very day? There is none. The milestone is nice... but celebrating it leads us to think all sorts of silly things in our heart-of-hearts, that (you already see) are nonsense (or worse).

If you need some sort of celebration (and most of us do), then let the other people in your life be the ones to celebrate -- when they take notice of the fact that you are a better person to live with; when they show you that they now enjoy you being more present; when you are trusted more than previously by others because they now sense your increased serenity and maturity. I am serious. Let all the celebration be from others, never from yourself. Let it happen naturally and be patient. These things will happen, as long as you work some sort of recovery consistently. And when they happen, all you will need to do to join in the celebration is to be aware of the privilege of being a truly better man (friend, father, son, brother, husband, chavrusa, worker, etc) by G-d's Grace. 'Grace' means you do not deserve it. All you did was make room for it by getting your silliness out of His way. And that's indeed something. Why not share it on the phone with another sick guy like me by calling and telling over exactly what you have been given as a result of finally acting less crazy than is natural for you. Call a GYE friend up and tell him in 3-4 months from now when you notice things are better at home or work, "Hey, Teshuva613, this is IshEmess again. Guess what?! Life is better at home and I see that it only happened because I am not escaping to play with myself in a corner like I naturally do when I get bored, annoyed, or scared! Hodu LaShem ki Tov!" Isn't that enough celebration for you?

I have done just that many times, b"H. And so can you.

Question 2 -

If you actually put the answer to the 1st question into action, then you will discover the answer to your second question. It will create a humility within you that you may never have had. It is a humility called patience, acceptance, and just getting lost in living the real life G-d is giving you - without expectations and demands for recognition, great feelings, etc.

Celebrating milestones obviously means something to your inner mind that is unhealthy for you. It's just gotta stop. And the humility of accepting that little (but real) change in how you let things run, is what people in the Program call living along spiritual lines. It's fresh and new. It easily becomes corrupted when we slide back into expectations and demands...

While the old derech for you and me was scripted by our expectations - we are supposed to feel this way, get that recognition, have something from others around us...this is a new path. Just living. Letting Hashem run the show and accepting that all outcomes are in His hands.

And if you lose the humility of acceptance as soon as you realize how accepting you are.... well, then you have arrogance rather than humility. Congratulations, you are just like the rest of us. Is arrogance is a thing to be proud of? Nah. We are people who need work. We do not have need of mental gymnastics to admit we are still truly arrogant, ignorant, selfish, and small-minded - even if we have been successfully clean for 90 days, a year or ten years. If you feel you 'have made it' by being clean 90 days, then all it shows is that you still have a long, long way to go, as I do. I've been sober 18 years bH and trust me - you and I are still a mess. And it's fine. That's the fertile soil that Hashem's Chessed works in.

Q & A
 
Caught My 15 Year Old Watching Porn
 
By GYE

Rabbi Dr. Avraham Twerski wrote to GYE:

I received a call from a mother who found her 15 yr old son watching porn

What do you recommend for this age group

Twerski

 

Read article
12 Step Attitude
 
My 7th Mitzva T'midi
 
By Dov

I have come to see that there really is something broken with me and that I need Hashem's help to be saved from it. I am an addict. That is the 1st step, as I do it.

And I do it every day and all the time, whenever I remember. It's no big deal, it's just the truth about me. Just like doing the six mitzvos t'midios for any Jew. That's life. This is my 7th mitzvah t'midi, that's all. This is not a cute vort, a metaphor, or a moshol. It's the plain truth, or else I'm fooling myself and soon I'll be dead.

And talking about it whenever possible, helps keep it alive in my mind. It's the difference between Chochma and Da'as - Da'as is a continual awareness that makes the knowledge real, natural, and usable in life. But enough shmuz...

The only reason I need for why I acted out on my lust addiction and "became" an addict, is: I am an addict.

And the only reason I am aware of that I'd ever act out again now, is that I did not take care of myself by adequately working the 12 Steps in my life. And that, of course, includes the 1st step (admission) that I mentioned above.

Of course, if you embark on the journey of 12 Step recovery, you'll understand what I'm talking about a lot better, so perhaps it's best to wait to go into details until then...

When I share how - and what - I do when I act out, I tell people "what I do when I act out" (not what I "used to do", or "did"), even though boruch Hashem I have not acted out in years, because I have no evidence that I can't do it again. I learned this from my sponsor.

Like many addicts, I have plenty of ga'avah telling me I won't do it again, but no evidence, at all. So I don't test it any more. That's why I'm here, rather than still "searching for the answer" as so many are, or dead - or worse.

I thank G-d that as of today, I have not fallen prey to the stupidity of checking whether I can use lust like a normal person can (and they obviously can) without ruining my life.

My wife and children would thank Hashem, too, if they understood.

Do you think you may have a porn addiction?
 

Do you have a problem with obsessive and compulsive porn use? Have you seriously tried the tools on GYE and feel that you are not getting better? Maybe it’s time to consider joining a 12-Step program.

Porn Anonymous (PA)
If you’re compulsively acting-out with pornography and masturbation we suggest you explore joining Porn Anonymous (PA). If you need help deciding whether to join PA, call Michael at 347-699-2368, or email help@pornanonymous.org to schedule a time to talk. For more information visit pornanonymous.org (Hebrew: p-a.org.il / Yiddish: pa-yid.org).

Sexaholics Anonymous (SA)
If your compulsive acting-out has progressed beyond the screen (with other people, paid sexual services, etc.) we suggest you explore joining Sexaholics Anonymous (SA). To figure out if SA is for you, call Dov at 917-414-8205, or email Dov at dov@guardyoureyes.org to schedule a time to talk. For more information visit www.sa.org.

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