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Shteeble's collection of inspiration
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If you've made progress - thank G-d, double your merit by inspiring others as well! Post the tips and advice that worked best for you in your journey to sobriety or tell us about recommendations you heard from others that work.

TOPIC: Shteeble's collection of inspiration 13838 Views

Re: Shteeble's collection of inspiration 04 Jan 2017 02:04 #302118

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#59

eslaasos wrote on 27 Jan 2016 15:47:
Hi Shteeble (that name seems to stick),
The thoughts percolating in my head earlier today seemed like they might be helpful to you.
I've been having interfering thoughts and temptations for the last few days. I've surrendered them privately and also with friends by email and chat which has helped but they keep coming back.

First, I was reminded of AlexEliezer's mantra of surrendering, and then surrendering again, and again, and again, as many times as necessary until you're out of the moment.
Then when I was getting frustrated that I'm seemingly stuck in the mud, I recalled the lessons of acceptance I learnt in therapy. I accept the fact that for this week (I can't think further ahead right now) this is who I am and where I'm at. I am not going to be finishing Shas, winning the lottery (to be able to give mammoth amounts of tzedakah of course) or solving the world's problems. I'm going to be just little me being mind-blasted by negative thoughts and tempted to escape in stupid ways. I'm going to be the best I can be at keeping my head above water.

Do I want to take the easy road to give in and end the struggle? Heck, yes.
Is it worth it? HELL, NO!
Will I? I hope not, and I have a small plan to keep me from it. Not perfect but so far still clean, thank G-d.

Hope this helps, and wishing us all hatzlacha.

Re: Shteeble's collection of inspiration 04 Jan 2017 04:24 #302130

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#60

eslaasos wrote on 12 Feb 2016 14:28:
As I get further into recovery (with the help of certain people here), I start seeing more and more how for the last 20 years my life and my actions were driven by selfishness.
In the past this would have made me shut down and escape into mindless dreamworlds of fantasy.
Now I can look at it and live with it, even if it's still painful. I can recognize the distinction between hating the actions with a passion, and hating the person which is destructive. Even 20 years of selfishness do not define me. I am a mixture of selfishness and generosity and I have the potential to develop the generous selfless part. May Hashem help me get there.

Additionally, this distinction is a great lesson to apply to my children, boss and others who sometimes irritate me. It's included in V'ohavto lreacho komocho. When judging myself I can sometimes distinguish between the actions and the person (this is a recent accomplishment), now it's time to do so for the people around me.

Re: Shteeble's collection of inspiration 04 Jan 2017 20:48 #302203

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#61

eslaasos wrote on 4 Mar, 2016[/url]:[/b]Excerpts from Cordnoy's email that hit home:Regarding recovery, urges are not a setirah to recovery. These come up by me all the time. I can work on avoiding opportunities, but if one comes up, I might be toast. We will probably always have urges....It is what we do when we get them, how we work to avoid them, and how we react afterwards that defines recovery.And even when we fall, that is not a contradiction to recovery, for we are not angels. This is a huge yesod. It is also why streaks are not the defining examples of a recoverer. Accumulative days might be better. We are recovering.


In response to my comment that a future of always recovering, never recovered is depressing:It is not depressing.
It is liberating.
Do not look at the recovery process as a negative.

This is what we are supposed to be doing now....let's do it. We are doing God's will and He is proud.


This really struck home. I must remember to accept that even if I shouldn't have brought myself to this situation, now that I'm here, this is where Hashem wants me to be, and if I spend the rest of my life fighting the same battles over and over, maybe that's my tachlis.

Re: Shteeble's collection of inspiration 06 Jan 2017 15:59 #302450

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#62
Yosef Tikun HaYesod wrote on 06 Jan 2017 14:25:

Yaacov543 wrote on 06 Jan 2017 04:04:
AAre there any shiurim on this topic I can listen to?

This website has HUNDREDS of shiurim on this subject.
Rav Ben Zion Shafier has a 12-part one called The Fight.
Start with those...they are awesome and very helpful.

Click Here to go to Rabbi Shafier's shiurim

Re: Shteeble's collection of inspiration 13 Jan 2017 03:46 #303023

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#63

eslaasos wrote on 02 Aug 2016 18:06:

theyetzer wrote on 02 Aug 2016 14:00:
I need help. The first step to quitting is wanting to quit. How do I get there when I enjoy it so much?

I am going to be presumptuous, make an assumption this was not a rhetorical question, and offer my opinion.

From my own experience and from reading the forums for the past year, I think there are a few paths where guys like us find the motivation to stop.
The emotional path can be triggered in a traumatic way by hitting bottom. The realization that life has become unmanageable. This is a painful experience, and if your level of acting out relative to your tolerance creates a level of manageability (denial certainly helps ) then you could end up like me, taking the long slow road that takes years to reach the tipping point of unmanageability. Much damage can be done to your family along the way, and it's not pretty.

Getting caught sometimes has a similar effect but not always.

There's another possibility. Instead of thinking about how to stop, try thinking about what's driving the habit. What is going on in your head that makes this habit so hard to break.
If your lifestyle includes a strong focus on your commitment to Hashem and to your wife, why would you persist in engaging in an activity that is a betrayal of both of those values?
Initially it may seem like it's nothing more than a natural response to a biological drive. If it was nothing else, wouldn't your values overrule the drive? Your values are important enough to you that they induce you to make other sacrifices.
Aah, but this sacrifice is the hardest, much harder than fasting Yom Kippur, even harder than keeping Taharas Hamishpacha. I wonder why is it that not everyone does this? (Presumably there are a few people left who don't, or at least not regularly, right?) Is there no-one in the world who feels that drive as strongly as you? Doesn't seem likely.
So maybe there's some other cause, and maybe that other cause can be dealt with head-on, rather than just fighting the symptom, which is for many of us a non-starter (although it may take years to realize that).

Stick around, check out the articles, forums, chizuk emails, handbook, tools, etc. and be blessed with hatzlocho!

Re: Shteeble's collection of inspiration 16 Jan 2017 03:05 #303189

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#64

eslaasos wrote on 18 Sep 2016 03:29:
Sometimes there's an epiphany, a burst of light accompanying a sudden internalization of a new self-awareness. I was blessed with this experience last night and am recording it here for want of a better place.

I noticed objectively that almost every Shabbos or Yomtov I would feel resentment to my wife and/or children that the atmosphere was not as spiritual as I wanted it to be. For years I held a "legitimate" grudge against members of my wife's family to whom the Shabbos Seudos appear to be opportunities for 4 hours of gluttony and shmoozing, invariably leading to loshson hora and divrei chol, and sometimes nivul peh or even kefirah (depending on which family members).

In the dark period of my life (hopefully over the worst of it at this point) I connected this to my wife, and that was never resolved. 
Having become slowly more self-aware over time, it culminated in a conscious and objective recognition last night of where my headspace was, which thereby enabled me to address it head-on. 
Having learnt many lessons from my GYE friends, instead of trying to reason it out, I just went straight to the conclusion that the problem was not in them, it was in me
Now I was able to force a sincere smile (sounds like a contradiction, but it's not) instead of a half-baked one that papered over a buzzing resentment, and the response was immediate.

Thank you Hashem for all your kindness to this undeserving wannabe penitent. I still have a ways to go, but I feel some hope that if I manage to keep my priorities straight, You will help me get somewhere. May it be Your will.

Re: Shteeble's collection of inspiration 19 Jan 2017 00:39 #303551

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#65

cordnoy wrote on 18 Aug 2014 19:45:
Awareness of the unmanageability of our lives was not apparent to us at first. But as we recovered from shock and spiritual blindness, we began to see how we were unable to function without lust, negative attitudes, and dependencies holding our lives together. Reaching the point of utter despair did not always come right away; it came to some of us only after we had been in the fellowship for awhile. The full effect of Step One seems to come gradually or in stages, with the unfolding realization of our unsoundness. It is out of this inner honesty with ourselves that the feelings of hope and forgiveness flow.
We were free to see and admit what we really were inside because we were finally free from having to act out what we were.
How long and how cleverly we had defended our right to wrong ourselves and others, and how long we denied there was any wrong at all! But every wrong attitude and act stored up its own punishment against us from within, until finally, the cumulative weight of our wrongs brought us to our knees.
The Third Option
Before finally giving up, we had tried one or the other of two options: On the one hand, we expressed our obsession by acting it out. On the other hand, we tried suppressing it by drinking, drugging, eating, or by fighting it with white knuckle willpower. And with what a show of promises and resolutions! Many of us switched from acting out to suppression, back and forth.
Neither option brought us the peace we sought so desperately. Expressing the obsession made it progress relentlessly, on and on, and suppressing it only made the pressurebuild inside until something had to give. Both options made it worse; we were between a rock and a hard place. We never knew there was another option-surrender. What a beautiful liberating word it has become to those of us who do it!

Re: Shteeble's collection of inspiration 25 Jan 2017 01:53 #304161

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#66

"an honest mouse" post=63244 date=1272372696 catid=1
I am by nature an anxious worrying type and since joining Ive been much calmer and more relaxed.

Ive started to accept that it is a lifelong journey of progression and Im not going to recover from one day to the next, which in turn helps me to get back up after a fall and keep going.

My last few falls started when I was alone with nothing to occupy me, on the computer in college, driving around by myself (the streets in the summer...) or frustrated that my wife is having trouble becoming tehora.

My therapist (who is a rabbi and was trained in addictions by rabbi abraham j twerski) told me about about a book of rabbi twerskis where he says that a lot of addictions are caused by a lack of spirituality - he calls it spirituality deficiency syndrome. My last good runs (36 & 21 clean days) were from selichos through succos & pesach and he reckons that Im craving spiritual highs and turn to lust when theres a void. He suggested to think of ways to increase my 'jewish highs'. Im not enjoying my night seder (im in law school during the day) and as its my only proper seder its very frustrating that its not fulfilling so Im gonna think about changing that around. He also suggested appreciating life, taking 10 minutes a day to appreciate the sunset or trees or colours in the sky or something to make it real - if you've got something real that your enjoying, it keeps you further away from fantasy.

When I have a productive day Im much calmer and in control, if Im not productive i suppose i get restless and frustrated which makes me more susceptible.

summary (sort of..) when Im spiritually fulfilled, productive & occupied im ok, but there are gonna be times that im alone, bored depressed, frustrated, unoccupied and spiritually low and I have to think of ways to protect myself then.
Last Edit: 25 Jan 2017 01:55 by Shteeble.

Re: Shteeble's collection of inspiration 25 Jan 2017 17:30 #304225

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#67

Hashem Help Me wrote on 25 Jan 2017 12:29:
Day 41 BH
Here we go again. I really needed my fix last night but when i came upstairs my wife had fallen asleep. In the past i would have "accidentally" woken her up, or just climbed into her bed. Now i know better so i cried a bit, but kept my mind clean. Eventually since i could not fall asleep, i took a drink (havent done that in quite a while - BH no issue with drinking). How long does it take until we can just switch gears and move on?


Gevura Shebyesod wrote on 25 Jan 2017 15:31:
This truck doesn't have a gearshift. It's not a sudden change. It's like a CVT, it shifts little by little. Each time t you make the right choices, you're making it easier for next time.

KOMCVTT!!

Re: Shteeble's collection of inspiration 26 Jan 2017 01:53 #304271

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#68

an honest mouse wrote on 16 May 2010 22:51:
back to the normal reporting....

this evening I was really stressed, there was lots going on and all the issues were at dead ends, stuff was piling up. A couple of months ago, I would've turned to lust. It would've got my mind off everything and made me feel better whilst I was chasing whatever it is I chased. I would feel like I was accomlishing something and at least I was getting there with something.

bH I didn't tonight, for a second I thought, in the past, I would've gone after lust now but I'm not gonna do that, so what do I do instead? How do I distract myself from the stress and despair buliding up inside of me? what's the alternative? but then I sat back, took a few deep breaths and said, 'H'shm, help me through this, I know you'll make it right when it's time', and then I felt a lot better. I'm seeing that stress also leads to lust as a way out for me, and I've gotta remember that I have H'shm with me for that too, otherwise the lust will creep in through the back door before I know it...

Thanks for listening! 

Re: Shteeble's collection of inspiration 26 Jan 2017 23:08 #304438

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#69

an honest mouse wrote on 17 May 2010 22:07:
THOUGHT FROM DAVENING:

We say in elokai netzor, 'p'sach libi besorosecha, v'acharei mitsvosecha tirdof nafshi', we ask H'shm to 'open my heart with your torah and let my soul chase after Your mitsvos'.

I try to have kavono that H'shm should open my heart to fill it with torah in place of the lust and that He should help me literally chase after His mitsvos with the same vigour and energy that I have been using until now to chase the lust.

Re: Shteeble's collection of inspiration 02 Feb 2017 03:53 #304792

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#70

gibbor120 wrote on 17 Aug 2011 16:23:
I once heard Rav Noach Weinberg ZT"L say that the best way to get someone out of a depression is to ask him to help you move furniture.  Get your mind into something else.  It's the best medicine.

Re: Shteeble's collection of inspiration 02 Feb 2017 03:59 #304793

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#71

gibbor120 wrote on 21 Aug 2011 04:56:
The Chofetz Chayim discusses a ba'al lashon hora and someone who speaks lashon hora.  A ba'al lashon hora is someone who never tries to control himself.  The gemara says his aveira is equivalent to a"z, giluy arayos, and shefichus damim.  However, if he controls himself sometimes, then he is not begeder a ba'al lashon hora.

I was thinking that everyone here can say they are not a ba'al ta'ava.  We may have ta'avos, but as long as we control them at least sometimes, we have already gained something precious.

Re: Shteeble's collection of inspiration 02 Feb 2017 04:30 #304794

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Whoever is on this site is a hero!
Feel free to contact me at michelgelner@gmail.com

My threads: Lessons Learned: guardyoureyes.com/forum/20-Important-Threads/335248-Lessons-Learned

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Re: Shteeble's collection of inspiration 06 Feb 2017 04:05 #304991

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#72

gibbor120 wrote on 12 Sep 2011 14:18:
I saw a great quote recently.

"Don't tell Hashem how big your problems are.  Tell your problems how big Hashem is."

Simple but powerfull, or is it powerless. oh whatever.
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