Men’s Step 0 – Day 1

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That you can masturbate to a blank wall and still be resorting to your drug. My drug isn’t just pornography, it’s the numbing release that comes from indulging in lustful desires. Masturbating to nothing is still acting out lustfully.

Because being around people that are at different levels of the path you’re on, it’s both comforting, empowering, and sobering.

My Dad. I also need to pick a sponsor.

I have to create my list and write them down, then I will immediately share them with the appointed people.

Instead of stopping and doing everything WE can do to continue stopping, we stop and allow god to take the wheel from there. We stop, turn to him, and ask him what we need to do.

The part that stuck out to me was the importance of reaching out and meeting with other men. In having a safe place to discuss our addictions and tendancies.

Because, I've tried to be completely clean for 20+ years and have never been able to completely sustain it. It sounds like having others to confide in and help is the key here.

I don't have a sponsor yet and haven't thought about reaching out to anyone else. It sounds like I need to figure that out though.

No sexually-charged movies or television shows
No lusting
No lying
No watching TV alone
I will attend one 12-Step meeting each week.
I will do daily Step Work.
I will take accountability when you have a trauma reaction.
I will take a time-out when I feel myself losing my temper with Liz or the kids.
I will take a daily inventory and when I am wrong I will promptly admit it.
I will work to be humble, honest, and accountable in my daily interactions.

I understand this to mean that I take accountability for my actions and that I am the only one that can choose what I do. In that, I also understand that I am and have been powerless to beat it on my own and therefore have to surrender to God's help to overcome. I cannot do that by simply asking God to stop it for me. I have to surrender and do the things that I need to do to make it happen.

I liked how the measure of our commitment to our group and attending our meetings will be the measure of our recovery. Along with, "without regular participation in the fellowship, there seems to be no recovery." These stuck out to me because its the regular participation in the fellowship that helps us in recovery. The more committed I am to connecting with others, the increase in my quality of recovery.

It's essential because it gets us out of ourselves, gets us connected to others which is key for maintaining sobriety and recovery, and shows us how to keep from starting again.

This week I'm committed to reaching out to my friend in recovery Kade who I met while down in Utah.

No specific boundaries put in place formally and shared with my sponsor. I need to work on those. One of the things I have done though is not only stopped acting out, but I've gotten rid of all my forms of acting out. This will help me be more successful.

That trusting in God and allowing Him to do what we cannot allows us to successful do what we otherwise couldn't on our own.

Needing to be part of others - a REAL struggle for me.
Needing to stop feeding lust - particularly thru the eyes and fantasy.
Needing to control resentment - even towards myself.

Because nothing else has worked and if I don't, I'm only left to me, myself, and I and we know where that leads.

No one currently. Don't even reach out to my sponsor currently weekly. Don't know why.

No porn. Ever.
Only look at people from the chin up.
Recognize and attempt to prevent resentment towards me and my wife - particularly related to my wife's trauma situation.
Recognize and stop any lustful thoughts that may enter my mind.

I guess it means I can't do this by myself. Need to stop trying to do it on my own as I fail EVERY time.

recovery is not possible without honesty. Honesty has been a problem for me. Fear drives much of this and pride.

this is a we program. The fellowship helps us get and stay sober so we can find recovery

Brandon. I'll ask him to be an accountability partner,

no phone in the bathroom or in bed.
looking for more than a second is lusting and breaking a bottom line.
missing meetings is breaking a bottom line

When we stop and give our will to the father, we are in essence saying, ok God. I cant do this on my own. I need you to drive and he will drive if we let him.

The accountability factor. The fact that no one seems to stay free from their addiction acting as a lone wolf.

To realize that others have similar or the same addiction. We can't do it alone. Even one person is better than none.

At this time I don't have a sponsor. There are no meetings that I found in my area. So, I'm praying for someone other than my therapist to help me.

I downloaded the "Setting Healthy Boundaries" sheet and will print it out. My experience in setting boundaries has involved my ex wife, and some very toxic people , most of whom I have little contact with.

That we realize the power to stop and not start again is not found in us. It's when we fully surrender to God that His power becomes effective in our life's.

I am coming to terms with idea that half measure availath me nothing. This section brought that idea out in my mind as it talked about staying stopped by casting aside all triggers, patterns, and behaviors that even leads toward acting out.

For me participation is essential because it is a safe place for me to challenge my addictive cycles and patterns. Others sharing with complete honesty from their experience often shines a bright light into the darkness of my denials and lies. They also accept me as I am right now, they dont condone or defend my poor behavior and will call me out when need be but they dont reject me either.

My commitment is not yet complete. I am still backing away from the hell of isolation. But my list includes my therapy group, jeremiah, God, Chris, and a few others I have met at group.

None at this point. I had a list for a while but I found I was not committed to keeping them so I have put them aside for now.

I have to give it away. He will not take it, no one can take it from me. If it is not my choice to give then it is not surrender.

To be a part of the meeting. Consistency is what I am lacking.

To get it out of my head and surrender it to the group

Ivy

Our plan

Stop and listen to what Gods will is.

I am reminded of when I started going to meetings over a year ago. It was one of the scariest things I have ever done. The first meeting I joined via Zoom and only stayed for a few minutes before leaving. I decided to try it again so joined another Zoom meeting and at first, I did not turn on my camera because I was embarrassed. The moderator messaged me individually and asked that I do so and introduce myself as I was new to the meeting. After getting over the initial embarrassment I felt such a weight off my shoulders. I had found my place. It is a little hard to describe but I felt different. I was no longer keeping things to myself and it felt liberating. After the meeting, I got ready for bed and Missy said I looked really happy and was also surprised at the benefits of the meeting. We were going through a tough spot in our marriage because of my addiction but she could see something had changed in my mind...even if just a little bit and that gave her a lot of confidence that I would be able to overcome the addiction by working the steps.

SAL meetings have been an integral part of my recovery. I have met some amazing men that have dealt with sex addiction. Their examples inspire me to be and do better. I am accountable to my group to participate and that helps me get out of myself like the reading mentioned. I also participate in the fellowship of the program by sponsoring others that are working the steps. This has also been a key to my recovery.

I don't regularly talk with my sponsor anymore, though maybe I should start doing that again. I have felt a decrease in my commitment lately and I think I need some accountability in that area. I also talk with my sponsees each week and usually take few recovery calls.

No mindless browsing of youtube (been a problem lately even if not looking to lust). This is probably one of the bigger issues for me. I think it simple yet complicated. When I use my phone to mindlessly browse the internet and youtube my mind switches to entertainment mode and eventually I want to be entertained by lustful content. It is a primer to my brain to want other things. I need to be better and do better. I didn't even really ever go to YouTube for a year while working recovery except for when links were sent to me and the content was not troubling. I found no desire to browse YouTube and I felt free from its constant barrage of content. Well, I am started to slip back into old habits and I need to get rid of it "one day at a time"

Recovery is a choice we make and the first choice is to stop. Without that initial desire and decision we cannot give ourselves to God. God cannot make us stop because he values our agency. However, I can make the choice to stop but unless I give myself to God and surrender my desires to Him it is quite likely that I will start and stop again and again and again. Like the reading said, "for a thousand and one times." God's power is more that sufficient to help me stay stopped if I allow Him to.

Fellow ship is crucial to recovery. I keep learning more and more and experiencing more and more why I can't do this alone. Having someone in the fellowship to tangibly talk to is a stepping stone to connecting with God through prayer and working with him.
- Commitment to the group. I need to commit to the group on Sunday, be on time, and reach out to other members. I got Joseph Z number and I will reach out to him.
-I also have to STOP. Not only the acting out but especially the area of thinking. I have to realize how poisonous a though can be if I let it percolate. This thinking also brings with it just living inside my own head. I have realized how selfish I am when it comes to taking care of myself, expressing emotions it is all about myself and maybe that is what they call "victimization". Getting outside of my head by calls and sharing helps dispell some self-centeredness but also serving Kari is really important too.

It shows where my heart is. It is what gets me outside of my head and latched on to something other than myself and my own self will. It is a step of surrender.

Well, I don't actually have a sponsor so that is issue number 1 that I need to address. I have set on time on Tuesdays to meet with Chuyen and I usually reach out to Russ as well.

"No" Bottom Lines
No viewing online pornography
No reading sexually explicit or suggestive material
No masturbating including chest stimulation
No mindless use of social media ie. Facebook, Youtube, Gmail
No going to bed with lust preoccupying thoughts

Positive Bottom Lines
I will attend at least one SAL group meeting a week
I will do daily Step Work
I will check in daily with my wife or an accountability partner

Stopping is the first step to getting on the path and showing where our heart is and what direction we want to go. But after that surrender is the only place to turn to so that I can keep from starting again. It is a demonstration of faith, through our surrender, that we trust God and let his power change us mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually.

"For most of us, without associating in some way with other recovering individuals, there is no lasting sobriety and none of the fringe benefits of recovery, growth, freedom, and joy".

I am not totally convinced of this yet. I don't see why associating with others is a necessary part of recovery. Why can't I recover with God's help alone? I have been sober for almost 5 months without actively participating in meetings. I know I haven't really worked recovery, but why is this such an important part of recovery according to those that have found it?

"We stop feeding the lust through the eyes, the fantasy, the memory."

I have stopped feeding it through the eyes in certain ways but it still gets nibbles when I am out public and see women dressed in certain ways. This is an ongoing part of my progressive victory over lust. Once it starts with the eyes from something that I am involuntarily exposed to, the fantasy is not close behind. In weak moments, memory serves as a food source for the lust. I don't know how I can ever fully remove that source. I don't know if the memories will ever be taken from my mind.

I am not sure about the answer to this question as I described above.

Some potential ideas:
- Sharing and opening up to others allows for humility, which is one of the two necessary ingredients along with faith to allow God to make weak things become strong unto us
- It is a safe, anonymous space for us to share freely so that we can be honest with ourselves and learn to share in appropriate ways to that we can help others that come into our path that need our help
- Seeing and learning from others that have recovered before us gives us hope that we can do the same

I don't have a sponsor yet.

I have not committed to reaching out to anyone regularly.

3 second rule.
No scrolling social media.
No wathcing TV or browsing internet after wife is in bed (going to bed with wife whenever possible).

The only way to overcome addiction is to surrender it to God. The pattern of behavior that the addict must become an expert at is noticing when addictive behavior is about to occur, stepping back, stopping the progression, and surrendering the trigger and associated thoughts and emotions to God so that He can take them away or strengthen you to stop them in their tracks and stay safe.

"We can't be sober in one area while acting out in another" I think this stuck out to me because I had a recent slip and have been minimizing it. I need to acknowledge that it was acting out.

Absolutely! I can't do this alone! It's so much better when I rely on God and others. I really get a lot out of connecting with my brothers in recovery!

Other members of my group and to check in with my wife.

Don't watch any media with nudity.
Go to 2 meetings a week.
Don't watch TV in hotel rooms.
Don't enter a woman's name in a search engine.
Don't search for lustful things.
Don't look at an alluring add for more than 3 seconds.
Don't click on anything that could take me to lustful images.
Don't use incognito mode or similar in a browser.
Don't browse the internet without a purpose.

When I surrender my will to God, he removes my compulsion.

"What we are really saying when we start meeting with others is, "I have to stop; please help me.""

My nature is to want to isolate and go the road on my own. I'm often uncomfortable conversing with others and feel dumb. But I know working these challenges with others is key to progression. I wish I had close friends in the program. I need to figure out how to get past the surface level friendships with some people from groups.

By far what has helped me the most is speaking to others in the group. It's uncomfortable but really pushed me out of myself which is the crux of the program.

My wife. I also need to reach out to others in the group. I need to be willing to include others.

I need to think through and set real boundaries.

The key to not starting again is surrendering my will to God and letting him fight the fight instead of me trying to control things. I also think God's methods are to turn and ask for help from others. So i can't do this alone.

I previously read this before doing this portion of th eonline program and the thing that stuck out to me was how accurate it was. I am super lucky to have an awesome support system snd a sponsor who gave a brief explanation of this. I was practicing this a day after admitting that i had this addiction and I just naturally followed these steps.

I felt very alone when I first admitted that I had an addiction. I went to a SAL meeting the next night and I just felt like a was part of a community, and was validated in my feelings. It’s okay to feel but you need to make sure you are still honest yourself.

Someone from my meeting I’m going to tomorrow. If I feel the need to reach out.

Getting rid of certain apps on my phone and following my instinct when to go outside and or to go see a friend. Allowing my self not to cage myself.

A higher power can and will help is if we let it. A higher power can be many things but ultimately we just need to let it go from within ourselves and let whoever is listening, take it.

It was reiterated to me the importance of surrendering my craving to God and not try to fight them. It is also something that Sara Brewer talks about on her podcast. She shares that you have to feel your feelings. When the urges come, don't fight them, but acknowledge them and give them to God.

There is also a focus on bringing darkness to the light.

You have to work the steps or they wont work for you.

Being with others who have struggled helps you to see things for what they are. It is easy to become disillusioned by the fantasy of the life of lust. Being with others and hearing their stories helps us stay connected to real life and to see the lie of the fantasy.

Erin. I love her. Also, my bishop is working with me. I am on my path to get married in the temple on August 6th.

I have the 24 hour rule with Erin. I am also implementing that with my bishop. Esentially, if I slip up, I wont be able to marry Erin in the temple. I am pretty motivted to marry her in the temple on August 6th.
• No viewing online pornography
• No flirting with women
• No sexually-charged movies or television shows
• No checking out women’s bodies—only look at people from the chin-up
• No lying

By giving our struggles to God, He empowers us to overcome. We must stop and give our urges to God for Him to empower us.

The idea of taking action stuck out to me. Just show up.

Isolation is dangerous for me.

No one

Nothing new. Big thing is to not start internet searches. I also need to avoid fantasy. Frankly, I am not going to overreact and fall into shame. I don’t believe that porn in itself is that bad. Far worse is the dishonesty and selfishness.

I’ve learned that humility is necessary for faith. I need to realize when I am isolating myself and becoming overly selfish and inconsiderate—when my actions harm others. If I am humble and self aware, I can become more “godly” and remember my commitments to my wife and family.

That the program doesn't tell us how to stop, but how to not start again. That seems to be a small distinction that really resonated with me right now.

Create a structure that will allow me to refocus my efforts on daily sobriety, overcoming set backs or avoiding them when the temptation comes and allowing the strength and experience of others to assist me in my journey.

Brad Mons might be a good person to be able to reach out to. Guys from the list each week at the meetings.

Reduce the amount of time spent on TV and other meaningless activities. Create a stronger daily systematic approach to my sobriety and to my work/life balance.

We must show God that we are willing to take the step of turning our back on the addiction, and then allow his Spirit to return to us to give us the strength to overcome the addiction. We also must put actions into place to prevent the return to the addiction.

Where it it says "fellowship is crucial to our recovery" on pg 63. This stuck out to me because it tells me that I need to be a part of a group and be outside myself to stop my addiction and not start it again.

To make you feel welcome, part of something bigger, and to feel loved for what we truly are.

I'm committed to reaching out to Mitch from the Wednesday night group.

My wife and I have set up boundaries, blocks and guards with my personal device so that I can't access anything that I'm not supposed to be on.

Means to me that I can stop but I need the help of a higher power to keep from starting again.

Other people is so heavily emphasized. Recovery can't be done alone, which does make sense to me. Addiction thrives in isolation, and someone else going through the same thing is the perfect person to break isolation with because they get it.

We can't "see ourselves rightly" without it. It helps me to get out my own head and see things with clarity. It helps me realize it's possible.

Guys from the group. And my uncle. I will call these people:
Uncle Morgan
Rielly
James utah
Michael CA

No pornogrpahy
No masterbation
No media that contains either (movies, books)
Immediate regonition, analysis and surrender of triggers

As the book says, no one can stop it for me. A therapist, or a wife or girlfriend can't walk into my life and stop my addiction. It will never happen that way. I have to stop. Only then will God's power take effect - not even he will take it away from me because the literal reason I am on this earth is to make mistakes and learn from them and to choose God.

Recovery here is shown to be a collaboration. It is the connection that heals and the meetings are where the connection is.

The opposite of addiction is connection and those who come to the meeting find true empathy. People who understand them deeply. That is a must in order to break through the layers of shame.

I can commit to calling one other member of the group. I have a sponsee who reaches out to me as well and I commit to connecting with him when he does. I can reach out to my sponsor, I have previously struggled to connect with my sponsor because he struggled to give me guidance on step 4.

I will not masturbate, view porn, lie about it, objectify any other person.

We have stopped so many times, but we need to continue to do that. The work becomes surrendering the lust and the triggers when they happen.

The models are great. I realize that dishonesty keeps you stuck in the self absorbed mode. Only being honest releases you into the recovery and empathy mode.

The fellowship program helps you be connected which is essential for recovery.

My group and my wife.

I’ve set boundaries of not getting stuck in the isolation and feeling sorry for myself mode.

It means once we stop being dishonest and acting out that opens the door for hope which is tied to our Savior Jesus Christ and God the Father.

The stopping of one addiction and not have it manifest in another.

To have the realization you are not alone and that there is help and hope even when you feel hopeless

No one at this time. The people I’m surrounded by would not understand me and what I’m going thru

The only boundary is my limited access to internet pornography.
I currently do not have a sponsor

I have to make a conscious effort to slow down, except my faults and open an otherwise closed heart to a higher power.

It’s clear no one seems able to stay sober without being part of an honest, open and safe recovery group. I can’t do this alone. The measure of my commitment is the measure of my recovery. All forms of practicing lust must stop. All of it effects my thinking. Stop feeding it through the eyes, fantasy and memory. I must stop and then surrender.

To get comfortable being honest and accountable, but also to get out of my own head and empathize with others.

So far, I have a temporary sponsor in Sean, but Brian has reached out to me. I may also reach out to Paul our group leader who is a little further ahead in the restoration of his family. I also reach out to my mentor, Bob, regularly.

• No viewing online pornography
• No flirting with women
• No sexually-charged movies or television shows
• No checking out women’s bodies—only look at people from the chin-up • • • No lying
• No staying up late
• No aimless browsing of the internet
• I will attend two 12-Step meetings each week.
• I will do daily Step Work.
• I will reach out to my Sponsor when I am triggered, preoccupied or upset.
• I will check-in daily with my sponsor
• I will take accountability when my wife or partner has a trauma reaction.
• I will take a time-out when I feel myself losing my temper with my partner or children.
• I will take a daily inventory and when I am wrong I will promptly admit it.
• I will work to be humble, honest, and accountable in my daily interactions.
• I will practice gratitude daily in a gratitude journal.

Stopping is stopping everything. But it’s also real repentance and making a real 180 turn in the opposite direction. It is also coming to the end of myself. That surrender of myself in charge gives God the room to work in my heart and be at the helm instead of me.