A winning game plan is something vital missing from most people’s reboots.
What steps will you take when an urge hits you? How do you keep a relapse from turning into a binge? Which situations must you avoid like the plague itself?
Most people just stumble their way through their reboots in a gray haze, unknowing and unseeing. So how does one create a solid play book for the 90 days?
Starting with the why
Before going into the meat and bones of the plan itself, I’ll talk a bit about why having a game plan is important in the first place.
Structure is the cornerstone of long-term success in recovering from porn addiction.
Most don’t reboot on one go, which means that they will make at least one mistake down the road that leads to a relapse.
That mistake then has to be reflected on and learned from for future recovery. Otherwise that same mistake will come haunting back and stall long-term progress until it is resolved.
But you don’t have to re-invent the wheel, meaning you don’t have to fail your way to success.
Thankfully the community and knowledge-base is large enough that anyone can shave off dozens of setbacks from their recovery process.
This is done by identifying what has worked for others and figuring out how it can be best implemented in ones own life.
That is what the Game Plan is all about. It provides clarity through structure, so that you are able to identify the current best approach to rebooting and tweak it as time goes.
But I only provide the framework of it. You will have to “fill it out” yourself, because no-one else can know the specifics of your life and situation.
So let’s get to the plan itself.
The Game Plan
The plan is broken down into twelve different categories:
This is where you decide which mode will stick with on your reboot. Monk mode, hard mode, soft mode, or a custom one you have come up with.
Remember that once decided, this does NOT change until you’ve reached 90. This way you prevent yourself from second guessing your mode decision and going down the slippery slope of temptation.
Outline the major mindsets you live the next 90 days by.
If you are serious, I would suggest “no matter what it takes” mindset. With this you decide once and for all that no matter how inconvenient a tool or tactic is in your life, you are putting it into action.
Which means you’ll hiking in the forest for 90 days if that’s what it takes.
3. Main Tools
These are the main tools you will not only power through urges but through any other difficult moments as well.
Most tool are “urge destroyers”, designed to help you resist temptation:
- Cold showers
- Drinking a glass of water
- Holding your breath
- Punching yourself in the leg
Other tools are more general, set to keep you in a beneficial mindset and improve your life:
- Exercising daily
- Reading non-fiction books
- Cleaning your room/apartment
- Being actively social
The main key is to try a few of them out and see what works for you.
List the blockers you will implement on your computer or your browser.
Go ahead and implement as many as you like.
They won’t stop you from relapsing if you are truly determined, but will limit random triggers and make it very inconvenient for you to relapse as well as give you time to reconsider and back down from relapses.
5. Daily habits
Pick a few daily habits you will stick to come hell and high water.
Best habits would be the ones that support your reboot and decrease urges. Examples include meditation, cold showers and physical exercise. However, do not overwhelm yourself.
These are meant to be supporting activities only. If all your willpower goes into battling yourself into a cold shower, the habit is not doing its job.
This fringes over to the tools section, but the key distinction between the two is that habits are routinely done daily, whereas tools are the for times of need.
6. Red Alert Plan (RAP) and Relapse Emergency Plan (REP)
If you haven’t already, check out my previous post about these two.
REP and RAP are plans of action to deal with urges and limit binging after relapses.
In other words, this is your contingency plan for the unfortunate situation where you have relapsed.
They must be created beforehand and assumes that there is only a less than 30 minute window post-relapse with any willpower.
This may seem useless at first, but is very important for long-term recovery. Letting a relapse turn into a binge will do further harm, making your recovery all the more difficult.
The history section is where you list the situation in which all your previous relapses occurred.
- Where were you?
- What device did you use?
- What time of day was it?
- Which day of the week?
- What were you feeling at the time?
- Were drugs or alcohol involved?
- How much had you slept the previous nights?
- At what time had you woken up?
Going through these question can be a pain in the ass, but those answers are worth their weight in gold. They will give indications to mistakes and danger zones to avoid.
Sleeping too little or too late, drinking alcohol, staying awake late on friday night or not identifying boredom early enough can all be fatal mistakes that can now be corrected in the future.
This is your chance to go all out and write down all your dreams and aspirations for the future.
Don’t hold back either, write down the most unrealistic and amazing things you want to do in your life.
Refrain from sexual things though, for obvious reasons. The idea is to make your vision so compelling, that it pulls you towards it.
The reason to do this is to have something amazing waiting for you in the future. I guarantee that you will not achieve your dreams without rebooting, so the discomfort of recovery now has meaning. It has changed from suffering to tolerable pain.
Willpower is the most over-valued tool in the rebooting community.
This section is for you to first identify all of the things you can do to limit your need for willpower to the absolute minimum necessary.
This is important, because when urge comes to bear, you will require your willpower at some point and if it is depleted…. Relapse.
11. Sticking points
Here you will do some introspection and identify personal sticking points that hinder you in life and in your reboots.
Not an action taker? Lack of patience? Lack of willpower? Other addictions? When you have these written down, find realistic solutions to each one.
This one is optional, but highly recommended. Research around the web for some good affirmations to repeat in your head or out loud.
The best affirmations are those that really resonate with you. This helps instill new beliefs into your subconscious.
“It pays to be a winner!” – US Navy Seals
If you wrote your game plan on a computer, print it out. Seriously. It’s more important than you think.
On a computer it will get lost into its depths, even if it is “visible” on your desktop.
Having it printed out on your table next to your computer will be so much more effective. Not to mention being able to refer to it from a safe distance to your computer.
That’s the framework for creating a winning game-plan for your reboot.
If you actually took action and created one, congratulations! Most people will not face their shortcomings and instead are comfortable about spinning their wheels in life.
Once you have created a first draft, don’t be afraid to go over it again and again. Tweak and change your approach, but don’t get stuck in paralysis by analysis. Always keep taking action according to the best knowledge at hand.
- Use this framework to create a personal game plan for yourself
- Write it down or print it out
- Store it in an accessable, preferrably visible, place