Never Get Complacent
Even though I have 3 years of SA sobriety, the lust struggles come and go in cycles, and never go away completely...
B"H, it wasn't real shmutz, but I got lost this week and last week watching movies and movie clips, some even rated R to satisfy the lust urge to see skin, and lost HOURS and DAYS of work and parnassa; and now I'm stuck with all-nighters to try to make it up, falling behind in Daf and family time. I'm hoping I've hit rock bottom on that, too, now: I've drawn a red line now and decided NO MORE VIDEOS, absolutely NO looking at any CNN or youtube, cuz once I start, I can't stop. I KNOW I have no power over that mentally numbing activity.
Yet, I was thinking, what can I do to ensure it's not just an empty resolution? How do I ensure that I won't one day slip and watch something innocent, just cuz it's a lunch break, etc, and then get sucked in? How do I know that I'm not just "swearing it off" like many times before?
ANSWER - and it's really simple - I must WORK the PROGRAM TOOLS on this "new" obsession. Which means to become aware of perceptions, motives, focus on the causes, and DECIDE to REALLY turn to HKB"H each and every time I have a desire to "vegge-out." Swearing-off on its own doesn't work, cuz I'm still leaving things up to MY control, MY willpower. THAT'S THE DIFFERENCE. If I focus on surrendering the "right" to view this stuff over to Hashem, beg Him to remove the desire/need, and focus on the midos work, I will attain that distance which comes from "drying-out", and get back to the life I had where the attraction was meaningless to me.
Never can I allow myself to get complacent over my battle for progressive victory over lust. Even if the video clips had no skin, it's still a LUSTING - a desire to wrest some measure of control over my life when things went haywire, to experience that "ease and comfort" of being insulated from reality for a while.
B"H, I have the clarity and the program that will be my guide, and HKB"H and the chevra to lead me. Please bentch me with Hatzlacha!!