Day 9 of 30: A Friend’s Journey to Recovery

Two days ago I read a friend’s blog about her progress on her own recovery and was absolutely blown away at the power of her story!  It’s been amazing to see her progress and watch the 12 steps working in her life.  She is completely different from when I started following her blog and I’m sure there was plenty of growth before that and certainly there will be plenty of growth moving forward!  THAT is the power of the 12 step program!  I am not kidding, it literally has the power to change who we are.  We become different people than we once were.  We’re less selfish.  We’re more confident.  We’re free of our burdens and able to turn our attention to the needs of others.  We heal.  We grow.  We share our stories with others.  If you’ve been stuck on your own program or have wondered if a 12 step can work for you, read this snapshot into the journey of my friend’s recovery.  It is amazing! Continue reading

Day 6 of 30: Working with Others

This morning I re-read Chapter 7 in the AA Big Book titled “Working with Others”.  The very first sentence of the chapter boldly declares a primary key to continued sobriety:  “Practical experience shows that nothing will so much insure immunity from [acting out] as intensive work with other [addicts].”  As recovered/recovering addicts we can help other addicts like no one else can.  Helping someone else achieve sobriety and ultimately beat their addiction is one of the greatest joys for a fellow addict.  This chapter has some great advice on how to help others as well as some important cautionary measures to be sure you take. Continue reading

Day 4 of 30: Do you Keep a Gratitude Journal?

A few weeks ago we were in the Addiction Recovery Program meeting and while an individual was sharing his thoughts on his recovery with the group he asked us the question, “Do you keep a gratitude journal?”  I found that to be an interesting question.  Originally I thought, “I do keep a journal, not every day, but often.  Why do I need a second journal?  I already record thoughts in it that are sometimes thoughts of gratitude.”  Continue reading

Day 3 of 30: Keys to Recovery

Over the last several years I’ve studied multiple books including He Did Deliver Me from Bondage, the AA Big Book and the Addiction Recovery Program Manual.  I’ve also met with a private counselor, held a private recovery group at my house, attended LDS Addiction Recovery group meetings, and attended SAA Primary Purpose meetings.  Fairly early on I took notes from each of these meetings and I would underline passages in the books and write in the columns.  Every now and again I would come across something that really changed my way of thinking or lead to a new pattern of behavior or was literally the key to my transformation from an addict to a recovered addict (I highlighted it by writing KEY in the book).  Over the next few days I will occasionally list those “KEY” experiences.  Hopefully you find them useful for your own journey to freedom from addiction. Continue reading

Day 2 of 30: Not my will, but thine be done.

Five or six years ago I tried an experiment to pray each morning and ask God what He would have me do that day.  I kept a notepad by my nightstand and wrote down whatever I felt in response.  In the beginning the inspirations or answers were minor, they were easy.  But eventually they became rather difficult.  I almost began to fear to ask what He would have me do because I worried that I wouldn’t be able to do it.  Continue reading

My first experience as a sponsor

I have wanted to be a sponsor for some time now, it was hard to be patient but I knew I needed to wait for someone to hit their bottom and be willing to work the steps.  I finally had someone reach out to me a month ago.  I’ll keep him and any of the story pertaining to him completely anonymous and out of this story.  That’s his story to tell, not mine.  For now, this is about my side of the experience.  What is it like to be a sponsor and what did I learn in my first meeting?  It surprised me! Continue reading

Time to make a plan

A friend of mine recently became a bishop (think pastor/priest) and he told me that he was shocked at how many people are struggling with pornography.  He doesn’t know where to start when they tell him their problems.  This includes adults and youth.  I’ve wanted to help create an easy to use program for youth leaders and parents.  I think it’s time to put that plan into action. Continue reading

A run a day keeps the triggers away

Who knew that helping out with my child’s school project could be a trigger to view pornography?  Last night my 12 year old asked for my help photoshopping a few posters for a school council election.  I love to help my kids with their projects and I especially love doing anything creative.  Imagine my shock to find myself totally triggered in the middle of the project.  I was serving someone else for crying out loud!  Thankfully, I was able to work one of my many tools I’ve learned over the years and avoid any complications like a slip. Continue reading

Recovery Tool: Bottom Lines

Several years ago my counselor introduced me to the concept of bottom lines.  At the time, I was participating in a private group at my house and one of the members also utilized and recommended using bottom lines.  A bottom line is a line you draw around behaviors and daily patterns to create a buffer zone between healthy living and living in the “danger zone” where you might become triggered and ultimately slip or act out.  Continue reading

Embarking on a new path in recovery

Last week I was writing in my recovery journal and one of the questions asked, “What behaviors or weaknesses do you want to change?”  My initial response was, I’ve found my freedom from pornography, I’m good.  But a few minutes later I remembered that I still struggle with viewing women as objects instead of people.  If I’m not careful, when I first see a woman my brain tends to see her as her physical attributes instead of as a human with thoughts, feelings, personality, etc.  I would like to change that and see all women as who they truly are — a human being, a person, a daughter, a wife, a mother, a sister, etc.  They are someone.  They are not a collection of objects to be lusted after. Continue reading