Read once, then minimize to save screen space.

Forum Overview

Post on the forum to get support, tell your story and reach out for help when feeling weak!

You will never be alone in this struggle again.

The GYE forum is anonymous platform of group support, and a life-line of chizuk for hundreds of people in exactly your situation. 

To use the forum you need to first become a member of the site, sign up here.

After signing up to the site, go to the forum, enter one of our boards and press "New Topic" to begin posting! 

Welcome, Guest

Additional tools for recovery
(0 viewing) 
This is a board for all the important threads that we don't want to get lost among the others :-)

TOPIC: Additional tools for recovery 34142 Views

Re: Additional tools for recovery 02 Jun 2012 19:27 #138688

  • Eye.nonymous
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 2696
  • Karma: 14
Here are a couple of short prayers of my own I have found to be helpful:

162: G-d, please help me have a positive sobriety.
163: G-d, please help me see straight.

"See straight," now that I think of it, has got a double meaning. The one I intended is, as an addict, I easily mistake good for bad, and vice-versa. So, I ask G-d to help straighten out my thinking.

Regarding "positive sobriety," it's easy to get obsessive about DON'T DON'T DON'T!!! And to focus on every tiny little slip. So, I ask for G-d's help that life in general, and sobriety in particular, should be a positive experience. "Live in the solution, not in the problem." We can't forget the problem, but our main focus should be on what positive actions we can do now.

--Elyah

Re: Additional tools for recovery 03 Jun 2012 10:15 #138708

  • jewish jew
  • Current streak: 29 days
  • OFFLINE
  • Gold Boarder
  • Posts: 314
  • Karma: 9
Thanx Elya point number 160 really helps me. I have done it before you posted it.

And thank you for the 400 AA slogans I'm in middle going through them (I find reading through a lot of them at once takes out the deep/er meaning in them, so I'm doing it slowly and going over some of them more than once)

JJ

Life is like a bike:
When it's hard you know you're going up.
When it's easy - you're going down.
And when you stop - you fall

Re: Additional tools for recovery 03 Jun 2012 13:31 #138725

  • Eye.nonymous
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 2696
  • Karma: 14
164. Increase your awareness of your perceptions and motives.

Duvid chaim says that, in the course of his 12-step calls, if this is the only thing you gain out of it, then it's enough!

At first, you notice when you're about to act out and, being aware of what you're doing, you can take action to avoid acting out. But, after a while, you start become aware of increasingly subtle motives, and increasingly subtle states of that feeling of restlessness, irritability, and discontent (which, left alone, will compel a person to act out). You become more aware of the subtle workings of your ego trying to manage life on your own terms.

And, the earlier you catch these things and deal with them in a healthy way, the less you feel compelled to act out.

--Elyah


Re: Additional tools for recovery 06 Jun 2012 14:26 #138955

  • Eye.nonymous
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 2696
  • Karma: 14
165. Talk, feel, trust

The line I heard that sold me on the 12-step program was from something I have seen labeled as, "The Newcomer's Welcome Statement," or something like that. One thing it said was that, in the course of our addiction we have learned the rules for life, "Don't talk, don't trust, don't feel." Something clicked for me--this disease is about isolation. I have been isolated my whole life, unable to talk, trust, or feel. I thought I needed to just read some Dale Carnegie books on public speaking, or just improve my self-confidence. My inability to talk was a direct result of this illness. And therefore, healing from this inability to talk, trust, and feel, will be the result of recovery.

And, that's what is happening. I have a new group of friends and acquaintances with whom it's safe to share my innermost and darkest thoughts and feelings. I have come to trust them. And, as I start to dislodge these clogged up negative emotions--especially guilt, fears, and resentments, then positive emotions that I don't remember feeling much of before also come to the surface.

You can't just supress your negative emotions and keep your positive ones; it's a package deal. As a result of hiding the negative, we have also lost the positive. When we start to uncover the negative and bring it into the light, the positive side also comes back to life.

Accepting ourselves for who we really are--both the good and the bad (and taking responsibility for who we are, rather than hiding from our true selves out of guilt and shame), I think is what helps most to move this process along.

--Elyah

Re: Additional tools for recovery 06 Jun 2012 16:33 #138979

  • TehillimZugger
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • לבד הנשמה הטהורה
  • Posts: 2446
  • Karma: 34
Eye.nonymous wrote on 06 Jun 2012 14:26:

You can't just supress your negative emotions and keep your positive ones; it's a package deal. As a result of hiding the negative, we have also lost the positive. When we start to uncover the negative and bring it into the light, the positive side also comes back to life.

I never really understood all this talk about negative feelings, now i'm beginning to understand.
?דער באשעפער לאווט מיך אייביג. וויפיל לאוו איך עהם
My Creator loves me at all times. How great is my love for him?

Re: Additional tools for recovery 07 Jun 2012 14:50 #139027

  • Eye.nonymous
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 2696
  • Karma: 14
166. The Ramban's Letter.

Since avoiding resentments and developing humility are a key to recovery, I find the Ramban's letter is a good reminder for staying on track.

What is it? It's a letter that the Ramban wrote to his son. You can find the Hebrew in almost any siddur. You can find the English on Google, as I did (well, I just found the Hebrew on Google, too) (I just took a quick look here, but I don't vouch for the accuracy of the text here or of the translation):




Hear, my son, the instruction of your father and do not abandon the law of your mother. (1) Accustom yourself to speak all your words with gentleness to all people at all times. This will protect you from anger - which is an unfavorable trait that brings people to sin. And thus said the our sages of blessed memory:

Whoever becomes angry all types of Gehinam have power over him (2), as it states: Remove anger from your heart, and eliminate evil from your flesh (3) - and the evil that is meant here refers to Gehinam, as it states: And also the wicked is destined for the day of evil. (4) And when you free yourself from anger, the trait of humility will enter your heart - for this is the finest quality of all favorable traits. As our Scripture says: The heel of humility is the awe of Hashem. (5) And through humility you will gain upon your heart the trait of awe. Because you will always know in your heart where you came from, where you will go and that you are delicate as a worm or a maggot in your lifetime and even more so at the time of death. Remember before whom in the future you will give a reckoning and an accounting for your deeds - before the King of Kings. As it states: The heavens and the heaven of heavens cannot contain You. (6) - how much more the hearts of men. (7) As it is states: Do I not fill up the heavens and the earth? says Hashem. (8 )

When you contemplate all this, you will fear your creator and you will be guarded from transgression. And with these qualities you will be happy with your lot [in life].

When you accustom yourself with the quality of humility - to be reserved before all men and to fear before G-d and from transgression -then will the spirit of the divine presence and the radiance of His Glory rest upon you and [you will gain] life in the world to come.

And now my son know and observe, that the one who is haughty in his heart over his fellow creatures, rebels against the Kingdom of heaven. Because he glorifies himself with the royal garments of the Kingdom of heaven, as it states: Hashem reigns - he is clothed in glory. (9) And what is there for a person to make his heart haughty?

If he has wealth - it is Hashem who declares poverty and bestows riches. If it is because of honor, doesn't too belong to Hashem? As it says: And the riches and the honor comes from You. (10) And how can one glorify oneself with the honor of his Creator.

And if one glorifies himself because of his wisdom: He removes the speech of the trusty and takes away the wisdom of the elders. (11)

It is found that all is equal before the Omnipresent, because with His anger He makes the haughty fall, and with His will he raises up the fallen. Thus lower yourself and Hashem will raise you.

Therefore I will advise you how you should be accustom yourself to the trait of humility - to act with it always. All your words should be said with calmness, and your head should be bowed. Lower your eyes down to the ground, and direct your heart upward. And do not stare at a person when you speak with them. Each person should seem greater than you in your eyes - if he is more wise or wealthy than yourself, it is upon you to honor him.

If he is needy and you are wealthier or wiser, think in your heart that you are more obligated in your deeds than him and he is more meritorious than you when he does good deeds. Because if he transgresses, it is unintentional, and if you do, it is deliberate.

In all your conversations and all your deeds and your thoughts, at all times, think in your heart as if you are standing before the Holy one blessed be he and that his Sh'china (divine presence) is upon you, because His Glory (Honor) fills the world. And let your words be said with fear and awe like a servant who stands before his master - and act with timidity before all men. And if a person calls you do not answer with a loud voice - just respond with calmness as if you are standing before your mentor.

And be attentive to learn Torah with diligence so that you can fulfill it. When you rise from your book - reflect on what you learned -if their is something that you can incorporate
into your daily life. Search into your deeds in the morning and night - and thus you shall devote all your days to in repentance.

Remove from your heart all your worldly preoccupations when you pray, and prepare your heart before the Omnipresent, blessed be He. Purify your thoughts and reflect upon the words before they leave your mouth. Thus you shall do all the days that your breath remains, with each and every thing, and thus you will be spared from transgressing. Through this your words, your actions, and your thoughts will be proper. Your prayers will be meritorious, clear and pure, meaningful and accepted before G-d, Blessed be He - as it states, You will prepare their heart and You will cause their ears to hear. (12)

Read this letter once every week and not less - to apply it and you will walk after Hashem - May He Be Blessed - always, so that you will be successful in all your endeavors and you will inherit the world to come that is hidden for the righteous. And every day that you read this letter, whatever that you desire in your heart will be answered by heaven... forevermore. Amen.

Selah!


References: (1) Proverbs 1:8, (2) Nedarim 22a, (3) Ecclesiastics 11:10, (4) Proverbs 16:4, (5) Proverbs 22:4, (6) Kings I 8:27, Chronicles II 6:18 (7) Proverbs 15:11, (8 ) Jeremiah 23:24, (9) Psalms 93:1, (10) Chronicles I 29:12, (11) Job 12:20, (12) Psalms 10:17.




שמע בני מוסר אביך, ואל תטש תורת אמך.

תתנהג תמיד לדבר כל דבריך בנחת לכל אדם ובכל עת, ובזה תנצל מן הכעס, שהיא מדה רעה להחטיא בני אדם. וכן אמרו רבותינו ז"ל, כל הכועס כל מיני גיהנם שולטין בו, שנאמר: הסר כעס מלבך, והעבר רעה מבשרך, ואין רעה אלא גיהנם, שנאמר: וגם רשע ליום רעה.

וכאשר תנצל מן הכעס תעלה על לבך מדת הענוה שהיא מדה טובה מכל המדות טובות, שנאמר: עקב ענוה יראת ה'. ובעבור הענוה תעלה על לבך מדת היראה, כי תתן אל לבך תמיד, מאין באת, ולאן אתה הולך, ושאתה רמה ותולעה בחייך, ואף כי במותך, ולפני מי אתה עתיד לתן דין וחשבון, לפני מלך הכבוד, שנאמר: הנה השמים ושמי השמים לא יכלכלוך, אף כי לבות בני אדם, ונאמר: הלא את השמים ואת הארץ אני מלא נאם ה'. וכאשר תחשוב את כל אלה, תירא מבוראך ותישמר מן החטא, ובמדות האלה תהיה שמח בחלקך, וכאשר תתנהג במדת הענוה להתבושש מכל אדם ותתפחד ממנו ומן החטא, אז תשרה עליך רוח השכינה, וזיו כבודה, וחיי עולם הבא.

ועתה בני דע וראה, כי המתגאה בלבו על הבריות, מורד הוא במלכות שמים, כי מתפאר הוא בלבוש מלכות שמים, שנאמר: ה' מלך גאות לבש וגו'. ובמה יתגאה לב האדם? אם בעושר, ה' מוריש ומעשיר. ואם בכבוד, הלא לאלוקים הוא, שנאמר: והעושר והכבוד מלפניך, ואיך מתפאר בכבוד קונו? ואם מתפאר בחכמה, מסיר שפה לנאמנים, וטעם זקנים יקח. נמצא הכל שווה לפני המקום, כי באפו משפיל גאים, וברצונו מגביה שפלים, לכן השפל עצמך וינשאך המקום.

על כן אפרש לך איך תתנהג במידת הענוה ללכת בה תמיד.

כל דבריך יהיו בנחת, וראשך יהיה כפוף, ועיניך יביטו למטה לארץ, ולבך למעלה, ואל תבט בפני אדם בדברך עמו, וכל אדם יהיה גדול ממך בעיניך, ואם חכם או עשיר הוא עליך לכבדו. ואם רש הוא, ואתה עשיר או חכם ממנו, חשוב בלבך כי אתה חייב ממנו והוא זכאי ממך, שאם הוא חוטא הוא שוגג ואתה מזיד.

בכל דבריך ומעשיך ומחשבותיך ובכל עת, חשוב בלבך כאלו אתה עומד לפני הקב"ה, ושכינתו עליך. כי כבודו מלא העולם, ודבריך יהיו באימה וביראה כעבד העומד לפני רבו, ותתבייש מכל אדם, ואם יקראך איש אל תעננו בקול רם, רק בנחת כעומד לפני רבו.

והוי זהיר לקרות בתורה תמיד אשר תוכל לקיימה, וכאשר תקום מן הספר, תחפש באשר למדת אם יש בו דבר אשר תוכל לקיימו, ותפשפש במעשיך בבקר ובערב, ובזה יהיו כל ימיך בתשובה.

והסר כל דברי העולם מלבך בעת התפלה, והכן לבך לפני המקום ב"ה, וטהר רעיוניך, וחשוב הדיבור קודם שתוציאנו מפיך, וכן תעשה כל ימי חיי הבלך בכל דבר ודבר ולא תחטא, ובזה יהיו דבריך ומעשיך ומחשבותיך ישרים, ותפלתך תהיה זכה וברה ונקיה ומכוונת ומקובלת לפני המקום ב"ה, שנאמר: תכין לבם תקשיב אזנך.

תקרא האגרת הזאת פעם אחת בשבוע ולא תפחות, לקיימה וללכת בה תמיד אחר השם יתברך, למען תצליח בכל דרכיך ותזכה לעולם הבא הצפון לצדיקים. ובכל יום שתקראנה יענוך מן השמים כאשר יעלה על לבך לשאול עד עולם . . . אמן, סלה.

Re: Additional tools for recovery 08 Jun 2012 07:19 #139091

  • Eye.nonymous
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 2696
  • Karma: 14
167. Torah.

Can't ignore the fact that Torah, somehow, in some supernatural way, has a purifying and uplifiting effect on us. I saw somewhere, I think it was in the Sheilas and Teshuvas of the Nodeh B'Yehuda, an incident where a bochor was boarding in someone's home, was having relations with the lady of the house quite frequently, and in the end married her daughter. After a couple of years of this, he was doing teshuva and wanted to know if he needed to inform the husband, which would forbid his wife.

The response began, first of all, saying how, despite everything, it may very well be in the zchus of this buchor's learning that he was able to eventually turn around and do teshuva.

***


I would also add that, as Torah observant Jews, we have noticed that something is wrong much earlier than it would take someone to notice who is not Torah observant. If we're looking at women on the street and touching ourselves a bit and can't stop, we know something's wrong. I think, without those pages of the shulchan aruch we are so familiar with, it might have taken us much longer, and we might have had to sink much further and lost a whole lot more, before we decided we need help. In fact, our standard for what's wrong is so high that we can come in here totally obsessed and yet truly wonder if anything is really wrong with us after all.

***


Now, more specifically about learning Torah: I would say that we have to be careful HOW we learn Torah. It is very easy to use Torah learning to sink more into our isolation, to escape responsibility even more while feeling fully justified, and it can feed our egos like nothing else can.

The process of learning is as important, and perhaps more so, than gaining mastery of the material. Overall, learning Torah should make us more open-minded, more able to consider someone else's point of view, and more tolerant of other people. Also, it should make us more considerate of other people, and more capable of making balanced and mature decisions.

In short, if you are learning by yourself most of the time because nobody else is quite right for you, or if you are going through chavrusas like a laxative addict through toilet paper, if your wife just had her third child in three years and desparately needs your help but you're nowhere to be found in the house at any time because you're always too busy learning (hiding in a sefer), then your Torah learning is probably not contributing to your recovery and may very well be hindering it.

***


I also want to add--there's a lot of debate on this forum whether recovery can be achieved strictly through Torah sources, or whether we have to rely on non-Jewish sources. I have put a lot of thought into this, and I'll say this: After each fall I have had, I tried to examine what was missing in my recovery that led me to fall. Where was I weak, what was I lacking. On my last fall (nearly a year ago), I realized that, although I was on these 12-step phone calls, I didn't have enough actual people in my own time-zone that I could speak to and meet with. It was the fellowship, the real human support, that was lacking. So, even if the text of the Mesilas Yesharim truly does contain everything I need to stop masturbating (and even if I truly was wise enough to extract all this information on my own and apply it correctly on my own), I WOULD STILL BE LACKING THE SUPPORT, which is a major ingredient to recovery. Even if I join a mussar vaad, I can tell them, "I have a nisayon with the yeitzer hara," but I can't tell them, "I feel like a demon posesses me and forces me to masturbate nearly every time I step in the shower." And, it is such specific sharing with people who have similiar experiences which has been most helpful to my recovery.

--Elyah

Re: Additional tools for recovery 08 Jun 2012 15:02 #139112

Eye.nonymous wrote on 08 Jun 2012 07:19:

I would also add that, as Torah observant Jews, we have noticed that something is wrong much earlier than it would take someone to notice who is not Torah observant.


Mesilas Yeshorim says (Ch. 5), that Torah is the most important ingredient for Zehirus - being cautious in avoiding negative practices. And he explains, "For a person's YH is truly very strong within him, and without the person realizing, it becomes constantly stronger and takes control of the person. And if one would not learn Torah, which is the antidote created specifically against the YH, the darkness of materialism will become stronger within him step by step, and he will not realize until he is sinking in the evil and extremely far from the truth, so much so that he may not even think of seeking the truth. But if he learns Torah, when he sees its ways, and its commandments, eventually it will automatically arouse within him an awakening which will lead him to the correct path."

Amen kein yehi ratzon!

MT

Re: Additional tools for recovery 10 Jun 2012 14:02 #139185

  • Eye.nonymous
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 2696
  • Karma: 14
168. Is this good for my recovery or not?

This is a handy dandy question to ask yourself when you're wondering about whether or not you should do something.

169. Whatever I place my recovery in front of will flourish; whatever I place in front of my recovery won't.

Another consideration, particularly regarding our involvement in recovery. Very often we sound like this, "I can't make the phone calls, or go to meetings," or, "What if my wife ever finds out I'm in recovery," or, "I can't miss afternoon seder!" Suddenly, when it comes to recovery, we're so responsible and nothing in the world can possibly budge. However, we didn't quite make the same calculations (or, we don't make quite the same calculations) when it comes to our acting out.

Here's another AA slogan which is relevant here:

PUT RECOVERY FIRST TO MAKE IT LAST.

--Elyah

Re: Additional tools for recovery 11 Jun 2012 05:01 #139209

  • Eye.nonymous
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 2696
  • Karma: 14
170. Humility, Fearlessness, Honesty

These are the BIG 3 traits--assets, that striving for them is a major part of recovery.

The opposite, Arrogance, Fearfulness, and Dishonesty, are traits--liabilities, which quite obviously feed our sickness.

To cleanse ourselves of these liabilities and to develop these assets, in one respect, is to change ourselves. Though, in truth, I think it is a process of just uncovering who we really are deep inside. It's not that we don't HAVE these assets. We DO, and we certainly conjure them up at time, even in our worst moments. We just need to develop them and to activate them more frequently.

--Elyah

Re: Additional tools for recovery 11 Jun 2012 15:40 #139229

Eye.nonymous wrote on 10 Jun 2012 14:02:

168. Is this good for my recovery or not?

This is a handy dandy question to ask yourself when you're wondering about whether or not you should do something.



Like that old Yiddle who heard people in Shul getting all excited about the Mets winning the World Series (many years ago), and he couldn't figure out what it's all about, so he asked, "Just tell me - is this good for the Yidden or not?"

MT

Re: Additional tools for recovery 12 Jun 2012 20:43 #139343

  • gibbor120
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • NEVER EVER GIVE UP!
  • Posts: 5250
  • Karma: 158
Machshovo wrote on 11 Jun 2012 15:40:



168. Is this good for my recovery or not?

This is a handy dandy question to ask yourself when you're wondering about whether or not you should do something.



Like that old Yiddle who heard people in Shul getting all excited about the Mets winning the World Series (many years ago), and he couldn't figure out what it's all about, so he asked, "Just tell me - is this good for the Yidden or not?"

MT

Depends if the yid is a Mets fan or not .

Re: Additional tools for recovery 13 Jun 2012 12:28 #139363

  • Eye.nonymous
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 2696
  • Karma: 14
171. Watch out for RID.

RID stand for Restlessness, Irritability, and Discontent--in case you didn't know.

It is these feelings that lead us to act out, and it is a lot easier to notice when these feelings are starting to develop (the sooner the better) and to deal with them in a healthy way than it is to stop ourselves from acting out when we're only a click away from pornography.

I've mentioned this idea before (and probably more than once), but I thought RID deserved it's own tool.

--Elyah

Re: Additional tools for recovery 13 Jun 2012 12:30 #139364

  • Eye.nonymous
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Boarder
  • Posts: 2696
  • Karma: 14
172. BYOB--Bring Your Own Book.

This tool is helpful for when you have to ride public transportation. Take something that's really interesting and will keep your mind and eyes occupied rather than sitting around and staring at every female who enters the bus or who is walking around on the street.

Please do not use this tool when driving your own vehicle.

--Elyah

Re: Additional tools for recovery 13 Jun 2012 19:13 #139416

  • E-Tek
  • Current streak: 25 days
  • OFFLINE
  • Gold Boarder
  • Posts: 317
  • Karma: 0
For those who can't read in moving vehicles, I suggest shiurim (that's what I do during my numerous travels). This is also permitted if you are driving your own vehicle, unless you are a new driver.
Time to create page: 0.84 seconds

Are you sure?

Yes