Step 6 – Get in touch with the Earth’s Electrons. Be outdoors- Hike, bike, run, be in water. The Earth is healing.

My wife and I found that when we were hiking, we were more present and conscious. We started to go hiking every chance we could to work through tough conversations. The outdoors helped us to manage our emotions and be constructive in building out boundaries moving forward. Utah is surrounded by amazing outdoor trails and mountains. We enjoyed getting out and exploring.

Some of our favorite hikes were to Zion’s National Park in Southern Utah with Red Rock surrounding us. We booked an AirBnB in Cedar City and we also hit the Kanarraville Falls on our way to Zion’s National Park.

Kanarraville Falls

There is science stating that Earthing has physical and psychological benefits. Evidence shows that getting outdoors and connecting with the Earth’s electrons is healing.  

Being outdoors has actually been proven to lower inflammation. Inflammation is one of the biggest indicators of disease. There is a science called “Electronic Biology” – the study of ways that electrons can move about within the human body.

“Environmental medicine generally addresses environmental factors with a negative impact on human health. However, emerging scientific research has revealed a surprisingly positive and overlooked environmental factor on health: direct physical contact with the vast supply of electrons on the surface of the Earth. Modern lifestyle separates humans from such contact. The research suggests that this disconnect may be a major contributor to physiological dysfunction and unwellness. Reconnection with the Earth’s electrons has been found to promote intriguing physiological changes and subjective reports of well-being. Earthing (or grounding) refers to the discovery of benefits—including better sleep and reduced pain—from walking barefoot outside or sitting, working, or sleeping indoors connected to conductive systems that transfer the Earth’s electrons from the ground into the body. This paper reviews the earthing research and the potential of earthing as a simple and easily accessed global modality of significant clinical importance.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3265077/

“In all things of Nature there is something of the marvelous.”

Also check out this book:

#addiction #sexaddiction #pornaddiction #recovery #health #life #love #addictionrecovery #somaticexperience #hope #fightthenewdrug #nofap

Exercise- Burn it up

We take in toxins in our everyday life through the air we breathe, the foods we eat, etc. We have to find a way to expel them. Our bodies expel toxins through peeing and pooping, and don’t forget sweating. So burn it up. Burn the toxins up through exercise.

I set schedules to construct my own recovery. I dedicated 6 am to 7 am as my hour for physical exercise. I have lifted weights, ran on a treadmill, road a stationary bike, or done a guided workout through Beach Bodies for the last couple of years. I have by no means been perfect. Somedays I sleep in. But you have to continually progress and challenge yourself.

Since December 2019 I have been going to Hot Yoga 2-3 times a week. Typically I go Tuesday and Thursday mornings at 6 am. I expel puddles of sweat in this class. I sometimes attend the Sunday morning session at 8 am. 

Yoga has been a form of meditation for me. Active Meditation. My workouts have been a holy space for me where I could begin to detangle the positive and negative thoughts. 

“If you are not aware of what your body needs, you can’t take care of it. If you don’t feel hunger, you can’t nourish yourself. If you mistake anxiety for hunger, you may eat too much. And if you can’t feel when you’re satiated, you’ll keep eating.” 

– Page 275 – The Body Keeps The Score; Brain, Mind, and Body In The Healing Of Trauma by Dr. Bessel Van Der Kolk

“… scientific methods have confirmed that changing the way one breathes can improve problems with anger, depression, and anxiety and that yoga can positively affect such wide-ranging medical problems as high blood pressure, elevated stress hormone secretion, asthma, and low-back pain.” 

-Page 271- The Body Keeps The Score; Brain, Mind, and Body In The Healing Of Trauma by Dr. Bessel Van Der Kolk

Your whole self is a connected organism- Body, Mind, and Spirit

Eat crappy foods, feel like crap. Feeling like crap will cycle in more negative thoughts and negative thoughts pull you back into the monster. 

Exercising makes you feel good. It makes you believe that you can do hard things and that builds on itself. Remember comparison is a thief of progression. Compete against yourself. Set goals to drop in body fat percentage, or measure your progress on timed runs, or weights lifted. Don’t pay attention to what others are achieving, just build on what you have done. Your progression is your singular focus.

Meditate 

“Understanding of the self only arises in relationship, in watching yourself in relationship with people, ideas, and things; to trees, the earth, and the world around you and within you. Relationship is the mirror in which the self is revealed. Without self-knowledge there is no basis for right thought and action…   Begin where you are. Read every word, every phrase, every paragraph of the mind, as it operates through thought.” 

  • Jiddu Krishnamurti

Joe Dispenza says:

“All thoughts carry an energy or a frequency. Change your thoughts, & you change your life.”

https://drjoedispenza.com/

There are multiple studies out there stating that we have anywhere to 60,000 to 70,000 thoughts per day. When you are in the depths of despair, the majority of those thoughts are negative. It takes work to change those thoughts from negative to positive.

This is what I have learned. Thoughts are living and breathing. What thoughts you give place to in your mind will start to construct your belief systems. What you believe turns into what you feel. What you feel turns into actions, and finally, repeated actions or behaviors are our default settings. In order to change our behavior. You have to start at the root and at the beginning. You have to evaluate what thoughts that you are giving life and breathe to in your mind. The only way that you can start to evaluate your thinking is by being more aware. Stopping and thinking just to stop and think. 

I have used applications like Head Space and others to be taken through guided meditation. There are resources out there where you can trial the applications for a month. For me, the most success that I have seen is using The Listening Program by Advanced Brain Technologies. I listen anywhere from 15 minutes a day, to even on my hardest and most difficult days, to two 15-minute sessions. The Listening Program plays classical music in specific orders and combinations based on what you are trying to achieve. I have found that I am better able to manage my emotions and decipher my thoughts when I use mediation practices in my life. 

https://advancedbrain.com/the-listening-program/

“The Listening Program® is not like any music you’ve heard before. It’s more than music, it’s music that works; to improve your mental, physical and emotional health.

All TLP music has been painstakingly recorded and engineered with world class musicians including the award-winning Arcangelos Chamber Ensemble under the musical direction of Richard Lawrence, and composer and master ethno-percussionist Nacho Arimany, among others.

Using the highest audio quality recording technology (High Definition sound) and advanced neuroacoustic techniques, TLP music is acoustically modified to train your brain, strengthening neurological pathways to improve your ability to learn, communicate, and process information.

TLP can benefit most anyone, and applications are wide ranging, from rehabilitation, to wellness and peak performance; in settings ranging from schools, hospitals, therapy clinics, assisted living facilities, companies, athletic and music programs, in homes, and on military bases.”

I close my eyes and I imagine a monitoring system, like a beam checking out my whole body. This beam of light slowly descends from your head to your toes evaluating your intentions, feelings, motives and your well being. This allows me to check in with myself to see what emotions that I am feeling, and why I am feeling them. Maybe you are holding on to resentment or anger towards a family member or a co-worker. Don’t criticize or shun the feeling. Welcome the feeling and become curious about it. Why is the feeling present? What do you need to learn from it? What thoughts give birth to this feeling?

Once you feel like you have evaluated the emotion long enough, you can decide what you need to do with the thoughts tied to it. For example, In modern society we are all used to receiving tons of communication. When your phone starts to slow down and lag, you start to erase old text messages that are no longer needed. Once the text is no longer needed, you can delete it. Our mind can be similar. When a thought doesn’t serve you. Delete it. Expel it. Make room and space for more important thoughts.

#addiction #sexaddiction #pornaddiction #recovery #health #life #love #addictionrecovery #somaticexperience #hope #fightthenewdrug #nofap

Seek Teachers

The Universe will guide you to the light and knowledge that you need and seek, if you allow IT. But you must first learn how to tap into your inner voice. This takes work and practice. Seek to hear the voices of the people that have gone before. Read books, listen to podcasts that are going to build and grow your knowledge and experience. You don’t have to make the same mistakes of the people that have gone before us if you listen to their message. But you must search for teachers that challenge your thought process and your perspective. For me, that was turning to Oprah, Brené Brown,  and Gabrielle Bernstein. I needed to hear from a woman’s perspective to better understand the influence I had on others.

You can’t have unity without diversity… we need freedom of thought to have diversity. Freedom of thought is only achieved by learning different perspectives. You don’t know what you don’t know. It is also our holy responsibility to fill our heads with constructive and uplifting thoughts. Our minds are an empty stage fill it with positive influencers.

The first guide I turned to was Oprah Winfrey in her Podcast called “Super Soul Conversations”. I listened to her podcasts in the morning at the gym. When she interviewed an author that sounded really interesting to me, I bought their book. A lot of times those books would have other recommendations of books that impacted them. 

I also started to pay more attention to the conversations happening around me. I would hear book recommendations of my co-workers and friends with more weight and severity. It was strange because there would be times that I heard a book recommendation and I knew that I had to read it. I would get a strong feeling and impression in my gut and sometimes I would even get goosebumps when something or someone was telling me that I needed to read that book. Or the book title would stick in my mind until I could research more about it later when I had more time. Many times the same book would be recommended to me by multiple people, or I would hear the same book recommendation on multiple podcasts, so I would think to myself: “Alright Universe, I hear you, I will buy it on Amazon.”

Oprah’s SuperSoul Conversations lead me to author’s that excited me and lit me up. One example is the book “Eleven Rings: The Soul of Success” by Phil Jackson. I have loved sports throughout my life. I have had so many positive experiences through sports. Phil Jackson is arguably one of the best coaches in my lifetime. Reading about his experiences with Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Shaquille O’Neal, Kobe Bryant, etc. was fun and exciting. I couldn’t wait to find some quiet time and space to read this book. Getting an inside look at the most successful people’s lives was so addicting.

Another example is when I asked my co-workers what books that they would recommend. A lot of them suggested “Shoe Dog” by Phil Knight. This is the story of how Nike came to be. Some of you might cringe at the idea of reading about the history of one of the biggest brands in the world. That sounds boring. It is far from boring. It is a history book but one that highlights monumental moments in American Civilization. If you are a student of business, this is a must read. 

 I started a goal to read 24 books a year. I have heard many times that the average CEO reads 60 books a year, which is 5 books a month. I broke that down and set an expectation that I believed I could meet. I did it in my first year and I read more than that in my second year.. I post all of my books on my Instagram account, you can go check them out @shawnblymiller. 

Here is a link to a presentation that I did at my work covering the books that I have enjoyed:

https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/139z5_92yLUvkfP6V5hd1a8-hJNVdQAkb6jK3FPgZdzM/edit?ts=5d0961f7#slide=id.g5115b5050b_0_0

I believe that in order to serve others you must have resources to pull from. Reading has become my fountain of knowledge and information. It has driven conversations and deepened relationships because I can share my insights and passions that I have learned from my reading. First start reading the books that get you excited about life. This will help you build a foundation to really see who you are. Once you start understanding who you are, you can understand what you are lacking. You will start to see opportunities for growth and learning. Don’t ignore the Universe’s push to teach you what you need to know. You have probably heard the saying: 

“When the student is ready, the teacher will appear.” – Theosophists Buddha Siddhartha Guatama Shakyamuni.

After a few years of reading books that I enjoyed. I came to a point in my life where I realized that I needed to read books that were going to stretch me. Stretch my understanding of the world. 

“There are problems women face that most men will never understand… because they never try to understand.” @alexbanayan – The Third Door.

I believe that the voices that need to be amplified to the men suffering from sexual and porn addiction are the voices of sexual violence victims. 

Tune in to the channel of change

Oprah interviewed Chanel Miller on SuperSoul Conversations and I knew I had to read her book. Sexual violence is happening everywhere. If you don’t realize that, then you are not paying attention. There are a number of stories on twitter and instagram with the hashtag #metoo and there are so many stories online being published telling the stories that are hard to hear. Even still, there are more stories out there that haven’t been told and that haven’t been heard because our society doesn’t protect the victim. 

Reading Chanel Miller’s book was shocking and eye opening to see how difficult it is to convict a sexual assailant. I think this book should be required reading for every High School kid in America, if not the world. 

The book not only depicts how difficult it is to convict a sexual assailant but also the waves of impacts that abuse creates. Chanel suffered the assault on a January Saturday night, but her family suffered for years. Her sister, her grandparents, her parents, her boyfriend, her best friends. The trauma was not limited to the sexual assault victim. When you hurt women, you hurt the people in their lives. You steal precious moments of clarity and effervescence from their kids, their family members, their coworkers, and their friends. 

Here’s The Powerful Letter The Stanford Victim Read To Her Attacker

https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/katiejmbaker/heres-the-powerful-letter-the-stanford-victim-read-to-her-ra

Here is a quote from Chanel Miller from her book:

“Denying darkness does not bring anyone closer to the light. When you hear a story about rape, all the graphic and unsettling details, resist the instinct to turn away; instead look closer, because beneath the gore and the police reports is a whole, beatiful person, looking for ways to be in the world again.”

Pg 312- Know my Name- a memoir- Chanel Miller

Here is another excerpt from Chanel Miller’s book: 

“My rape kit still hadn’t been tested in the crime lab. They told me it would be expedited due to media pressure, but months later I was still waiting. I figured it had something to do with results showing up slowly, some DNA sciencey who knows what. But I was told it was because of the backlog of kits. There were hundreds in line before me, some kits kept so long they grew mold, some thrown out, the lucky ones refrigerated. Immediately I felt ill. How could that be, this was not fruit rotting, it was little pieces of us in each one, an indispensable story. It also meant there was a population of victims in my vicinity, disguised in their everyday lives, going to work, refilling their coffee, eyes wide at night, waiting.”

Now I absolutely didn’t ever rape anyone. But even knowing that I never had raped anyone. How could I compare myself to someone that had? The quick answer is that I could start to see the grasp that the sickness had on me. Seeing women as objects to be conquered was a thought process that many times I operated off of. I searched for ways to win their approval and their admiration. I justified that getting sexual attention was the ultimate acceptance. My thoughts were that if I could get a woman to want me even when I was married to another woman, then I was very desirable. That feeling was addicting. The statistics would argue that I am not the only guy that has sought ways to feel desirable or to get what they wanted. 

For a while I had heard and read about this #metoo movement. There were all these famous powerful men being accused and convicted of sexually assaulting women. I started paying more attention to it because it concerned me. I would think, could this possibly be me in the future, or if I had their power and influence would I do the same thing? It downright scared me. I had to learn more about this #metoo movement and how it started. That is how I discovered Tarana Burke. 

Tarana Burke accepts the title of “leader” of the #metoo movement , but has stated that she considers herself more of a “worker.” Burke has stated that this movement has grown to include both men and women of all colors and ages, as it continues to support marginalized people in marginalized communities. There have also been movements by men aimed at changing the culture through personal reflection and future action, including #IDidThat, #IHave, and #IWill. 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tarana_Burke

Check out this text from the founder of the #MeToo Movement:

Sydney Peace Prize Speech- Tarana Burke

“In the U.S. 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 5 boys will experience sexual violence by the time that they are 18. In Australia that is 1 in 6 girls and 1 in 9 boys by the age of 15. And around the world those numbers are about the same. 

Most of those children grow up to be adults who still carry those wounds. And if you manage to make it out of childhood without experiencing some form of sexual violence, statistics show us that there are several more instances where it is likely to occur as you grow old. Especially if you are a woman. Especially if you are a poor woman. Especially if you are a poor woman of color, or weird or Trans, or disabled, or indegenous. 

I am not surprised because Sexual violence can effect everyone. And because it is extremely isolating we crave community as survivors. And that is what the hashtag gave us, space to be seen, and heard, and create community. 

So how did a moment that was so desperately needed in order to boost a movement that is so desperately needed for people who have already experienced a spectrum of trauma get reduced to a witch hunt. I keep coming back to the idea of empathy and courage because both of them are at the core of what is needed for us to adequately respond to the millions of people who so bravely came forward. This movement is not about creating a witch hunt or targeting powerful men, or women’s revenge. And what does it say about the person who can witness the outpouring of stories across the world and reduce it to women’s historyonics or full outrage… 

The #metoo movement is so much more than what so many of us think. When a singular hashtag inspired more than 180 countries to translate it into their own language and countries like China  even to find ways to add their voices to the chorus. You are talking about a movement, about possibility. When thousands of people join together, put their bodies on the line, watching and protesting and saying that they won’t stand for sexual predators to take and be in positions that will make decisions about our bodies. We are talking about a movement about power. When an 83 year old survivor of sexual abuse feels supported enough to come forward and finally release the story that she has been holding in the pit of her stomach for 75 years, we are talking about a movement, about love. And when a little black girl from the Bronx makes up her mind that she will not be consumed by the thing that tried to kill her everyday of her life, but she will turn that pain into a pathway of healing for others like her. We are talking about a movement, about vision. I am grateful that this work is being recognized as peace work by the Sydney of Peace Foundation. I hope others will see that the work that we are showing our future generations can live without violence. Particularly sexual violence is social justice work and it is peace work. We are not out here simply working to simply raise awareness. There is enough data and stories and information to make everyone aware and as the brilliant author and scholar Dr. Demonti Perry says “awareness in and of itself is not a virture without a moral imparity. This is our moral imperative. I hope each of you carries that message with you when you leave here and know that this movement doesn’t exist without you. So I urge you to join us and if you are ready to stand with the survivors and allies around the world, don’t worry if you don’t know where to start, don’t worry if your hands tremble a little bit, there are enough of us out here to welcome you guide you and help you find your place. So if you are ready to join this fight to end sexual violence and ensure the survivors have what they need to craft their own healing journey. I can only leave you with these 2 words. #metoo”

https://www.instagram.com/taranajaneen/?hl=en

I also believe that every person in the world should see what Tim Ballard and his special operations team is doing to combat sex trafficking around the world. 

http://ourrescue.org/

Tim Ballard runs an amazing organization called Operation Underground Railroad @ourrescue. This organization rescues kids from sex trafficking. Follow them on Instagram and know their stories. 

Tim Ballard also created a movie called Operation Toussaint: Underground Railroad and the Fight to End Modern Day Slavery (2018). Tim Ballard and his special forces team go undercover in Haiti to bring a ring of sex traffickers who bribed their way out of jail, to justice. 

Tim Ballard also wrote a book called Slave Stealers. He highlights the similarities between modern-day slavery (Sex-trafficking) to the slave trade in the 1800s. I highly recommend this book.

#addiction #sexaddiction #pornaddiction #recovery #health #life #love #addictionrecovery #somaticexperience #hope #fightthenewdrug #nofap #metoo

Step 3. Growth Mindset -Feed your Mind

The first books that I read in my counseling were 3 books by Brené Brown. 1. The Gifts of Imperfection 2. Rising Strong 3. Daring Greatly.

Brené Brown gave one of the most powerful Ted Talks of all time titled: The Power of Vulnerability:

 She calls herself a researcher. The most interesting part was that she set out to study and research connection. The more she studied connection the more she learned about what caused us to disconnect. The greatest thing leading to disconnection is Shame. Shame leads us to isolation. Shame separates us from the pack. Shame gives you the narratives to tell you that you are undeserving, that because you committed an evil act that you are evil. 

I hope to one day meet Brene Brown and give her the biggest thank you known to man. She jump started my road to recovery. Through her teachings she reinforced the idea that I was not the acts that I had committed. 

Brene really helped me to start to find myself. I had to peel back layer by layer to find pieces that were me and what were the addiction: 

I recently read this quote and found this to be perfect saying:

“Finding yourself is not really how it works. You aren’t a ten-dollar bill in last winter’s coat pocket. You are also not lost. Your true self is right there, buried under cultural conditioning, other people’s opinions, and inaccurate conclusions you drew as a kid that became your beliefs about who you are. Finding yourself is actually returning to yourself. An unlearning, an excavation, a remembering who you were before the world got its hands on you.”

-Emily McDowell

You might feel like you are addicted and you have tried to stop acting out sexually or viewing pornography and you can’t stop. The great news is that brains have Neuroplasticity. We can reshape our brains. The brain is a muscle, it grows or it atrophies. You can even grow different connections in your brain, meaning you can grow new neuro pathways to affect your behavior. You don’t know it yet, but you are in control of the meanings that you assign to your experiences. You have a conscious choice of how you want to respond to every event that happens in your life. 

I too have felt hopeless and defeated. I have spent many hours pouring my heart and soul out to my Maker to take these desires away from me. 

Know this:

God and the Universe Love you. They want you to be happy. Happiness and joy are your birthright.

You need to own your faults but more importantly you need to give yourself permission to be healed and to be ok. You need to give yourself permission to be human and to make mistakes. Let go of the thought that you are hopeless and you are disgusting so you are lost. That is a lie. If you are caught in the grasp of a pornography or sex addiction, don’t let that reality carry you down further into the darkness. There is hope. 

“Everything is energy and that’s all there is to it. Match the frequency of the reality you want and you cannot help but get that reality. It can be no other way. This is not philosophy. This is physics.” – Albert Einstein

Brene Brown’s Favorite Quote:

Theodore Roosevelt Quote:

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

The biggest lesson for me in her books was that we are all imperfect. The universal truth is that we all struggle with something. If we continue to hide the thing that we struggle with we will continue to feel isolated and alone. The path to healing is speaking your truth and being vulnerable. 

The crazy thing was that as I became more vulnerable and truthful with the people around me, the more whole and full I felt. Even more ludicrous was that as I became more vulnerable I was lead to more tools to help myself to recover. 

One example of that is when I told a lifelong friend about my struggles, she guided me to a counseling team that specialize in sexual addictions. I didn’t know what was wrong with me. Yet, here was the Universe giving me guidance to learn more about myself and what I was going through. 

Thoughts are powerful, thoughts are a construct and a framing for the future. 

“Our lives begin to end the day we remain silent about things that matter.” Martin Luther King Junior

The biggest decider of my state for me was and continues to be what thoughts that I allow to come into my mind. Our mind is continually running and we have an internal dialogue. I went to a Tony Robbins event once and he talked through this scenario:

How many of you think that you are the thoughts that you are having? Your thoughts are not you.

When you know that you can start to be the gatekeeper of your own mind. Thoughts will enter your head space and you have the right and the responsibility to rid yourself of thoughts that are unhealthy and damaging. 

The untangling of thoughts that have come from indoctrination can be the hardest things to remove from our consciousness. 

“It’s the biases we don’t know we hold that are the most dangerous.” – Alex Banayan – The Third Door

It was in the book The Third Door that I had this epiphany. Alex was interviewing some of the most successful people in our lifetime. He was a male seeking to speak to male counterparts. To quote directly from his book : 

“My mind began flashing over all of the interviews I’d done so far– Tim Ferriss, Qi Lu, Sugar Ray Leonard, Dean Kamen, Larry King, Bill Gates, Steve Wozniak, Pitbull– and, as if I was looking at my reflection for the first time, it was shockingly, and embarrassingly, clear: male, male, male, male, male, male, male, and male. 

How could I have never noticed this before? 

When I’d come up with my list, it was me with my male friends dreaming up whom we wanted to learn from. When I brainstormed questions before an interview, it was me and my male friends thinking about what we wanted to learn. Not once had it crossed my mind to wonder whom my sisters or female friends wanted to learn from…”

I began to ask myself: What voices have I been silencing that I need to hear? That is what I will cover on next week’s post.

“When you believe something it becomes really hard to see something that we don’t believe”– Amber Scorah

#addiction #sexaddiction #pornaddiction #recovery #health #life #love #addictionrecovery #somaticexperience #hope #fightthenewdrug #nofap

Step 2 – Journal and Develop your Inner Voice

I believe in a holistic view of my body, mind and spirit. My mind needs healing. Maybe yours does too. Sometimes an infected mind is more difficult to diagnose. It all comes down to perspective. It comes down to how our mind was trained to see the world. You at the center of the universe and everything acting around you. In order to heal we have to become the doctors of our own minds. People can tell us all day long that we need to change and that our thoughts and our actions are harming others. But until we see it for ourselves, the motivation to change won’t come. It’s too hard. We have to confront and pass through too much raw pain and emotion to have the determination to walk through the wilderness of our hurtful memories. 

Sometimes we compare our hurt to others and we think that our hurt is less or more. It wasn’t as deep and it wasn’t as hurtful as what others have gone through. Or we think that we are a lost cause because we have done something so heavy and wrong. Comparison is a thief to progression. Other people’s progress doesn’t stunt our growth. Other people’s pain doesn’t silence ours. Your pain and your experience is valid, it is important, it is real. If you want to grow, you must let go of comparisons and look internally without judgement. You must see the pain and the illness before you can take measures to impact it. We are all broken and incomplete wherever we are in life. That has become the most exciting and the most daunting part for me. Growth is ever present and available. You can continue to climb the mountain of knowledge and intelligence forever. 

Developing your inner voice 

The greatest lesson for me in my experience was dissecting my behavior. What emotions was I feeling when I acted out. I learned that our thoughts and cognitive thinking generate a biological physical response. My feelings were fabricated by my thoughts. If I was allowing negative narratives to run in my mind, my feelings were negative. Tony Robbins talks a lot about the connection between our brain and our feelings. Tony explains it this way: 

“We’ve all heard the term “state of mind,” but have you ever put much thought into what it really means? Before you can answer the question, “How do I change my state of mind?” you first have to know what it is. “State of mind” is defined as the quality of one’s consciousness as it relates to the outside world, as well as the perception of their inner thoughts and emotions. When you’re in control of your state of mind, you’re the master of your emotions and you understand that life is happening for you, not to you.”

When I dissected the emotions I was feeling when I was viewing pornography and acting out, I learned that there were narratives running in my mind. Some of those narratives were true and some of them were false. I had to become more self-aware of what thoughts I was allowing to have a place in my mind. You must learn how to become the gatekeeper to your own mind. Sometimes negative thoughts enter your mind, but you just need to recognize this and discard those thoughts as soon as possible. Journaling and talking about my feelings became an exorcism exercise for me. 

I quickly learned that my emotional maturity had been stifled the majority of my life because I never paid much attention to the negative feelings I was feeling. I would just use pornography to silence them and to brush them away. I didn’t understand some of the more complex negative feelings because I didn’t even take the time to understand the basic everyday negative feelings. You have to learn to create environments where you can process your feelings in a healthy way. If you do look at pornography don’t use it as a replacement behavior to avoid addressing difficult conversations. Pornography will make you feel good in the moment but it will never solve the conundrum that you are avoiding. 

When you don’t express your feelings they become a ball of energy that has to be released. Energy can’t be destroyed, it has to be transferred. Pornography would only delay the release of the emotions. My feelings would be stacked and packed for so long that they would be stockpiled for an outburst. My outbursts would be by acting out irrationally by saying something really insulting and hurtful. Or one time I kicked a hole in a door in an argument with my parents. Or another time, I broke my hand by punching my brother because he took a bite of my sandwich. 

The negative narratives in my mind were poison to my system. I wish I had the tools as a kid that I have learned over the last few years of my life to control my “state” or my consciousness and awareness. Your energy creates your reality.

Ridding yourself of things that aren’t you. 

Growing up I hated onions. I hated them so bad that I would gag the moment they hit my tongue. The problem was that my Mother put onions in everything. Not just some onions, a lot of onions. I still give her a hard time about it today. So before taking my first bite I had to dig through the food and break it up to find all of the onions. My road to recovery was a lot like this. I had to break down all of my assessments and opinions of things to deconstruct the lies. You know the things that you are so sure about and you physically get ill when others disagree with you on. Break that down to the simplest parts. Because the thing that I learned is that beliefs and theologies are not that far apart. The Curan and the Bible have a lot of the same history, at least from the old testament. They just both branched off to different stories, different paths, and different prophets. The more I was absolutely and positively certain about something, the more I had to dig into it and re-check the structure of the thinking. Remove your ego and allow yourself to be humble enough to learn something. My experiences in life have shown me that the more certain people are about something, the more insecure they are about their beliefs. When they puff up and attack you for your beliefs it is because they feel like their beliefs need to be guarded and protected. Don’t be so egocentric to think that you have all of the answers, and you know all of the truth, that is just another path down into a dark mind trap. 

You also have to start setting your intentions for the day

While working through my recovery I had to start mapping out how I wanted to feel that day.

One Thanksgiving I was feeling the weight of my past sins weigh down on me. I was about to head to my parents for Thanksgiving and I felt the urge to numb out. I wanted to forget the negative thoughts and emotions that I had felt around them.

You see, after everything had been revealed, my family felt a lot of embarrassment and they let me know it. They shared their disgust and their hurt that they had to face the consequences of my decisions. So whenever I was around them for long periods of time that shame would carry me to the emotional minefield of remembering their feelings of shame. I felt disowned and like an embarrassment to my family. Being reminded of the hurt that you have caused others can be triggering. It can lead you to a dark place where you begin to think that you are hopeless and you are evil. Evil thoughts like: “I will never be able to change. This hurt will never go away so they will never be able to see me any differently.” Please know that that thought is a big disgusting lie.

I had to quickly manage these emotions and know that this was my Ego running with this negative narrative. Has my family really disowned me? Were they really embarrassed and ashamed of me? If you have to ask them, ask them. But wait until you are in a place where you can talk about your emotions calmly. If you find yourself raising your voice and getting emotionally heated. It is not time to address the conflict and the insecurities. It took me years to be able to approach my family with those questions in a mature manner. 

You also have to remember that people are entitled to their emotions. If you have betrayed someone, they have the right to be angry. If you have hurt someone’s feelings, they have the right to be upset and offended. You have to give them time and space to feel those emotions.

I will tell you that it is extremely vital to spend your time with people that are uplifting and make you a better person. Cut people out that are draining on your outlook and your growth even if they are family. 

I think the most disheartening times for me have been seeing the wreckage that I have caused to the people I love the most and not being able to help them heal. The healing comes from first focusing on bettering yourself and then helping others. Also, when people see how hard that you are working on growing and bettering yourself, the more empathetic and compassionate they will feel to what you have gone through. 

One of my most favorite songs of all time is Man In the Mirror By Michael Jackson: 

Help yourself to be a better person, then help others.

 After that you can start by helping strangers that are victims of other people’s wreckage. We must do the emotional and spiritual work to take back the futures of our ancestors. Our kids don’t have to live with our trauma. We can convert the pain into positive energy, we can convert the addiction into healing. 

#addiction #sexaddiction #pornaddiction #recovery #health #life #love #addictionrecovery #somaticexperience #hope #fightthenewdrug #nofap

Diagnose and Cure- Create a safe space to witness yourself without judgement.

A sickness can’t be cured unless we first diagnose it and understand how it works. 

What is your automatic and unconscious belief about the women in your experience? I say experience because we each have a specific impact and exposure. 

What is your default setting when you look at a woman? 

Think to yourself: Has pornography impacted the way that I give meaning and purpose to this woman that I work with, or that I have met at an event or at a store? 

Do I look at her with lust and desire, or do I ask myself what meaningful conversation can I spark up with her to learn and grow from one another?

Does pornography mess with the way that I construct and give meaning to the women that I see on Instagram, Facebook, or on social media?

I know that everyone has an inner dialogue going on in their mind. Sometimes we don’t realize that we have control over what we think and how often we think it. Give yourself permission to study the framework of what makes you think the way that you think. 

I think the lesson here is compounded even more in sexual relationships. Our experience is not the only experience to consider. Sometimes we get so caught up in the wave of the powerful feelings and sensations involved in sex that we are feeling that it becomes harder to see, hear, and understand anyone else’s feelings. 

I know that I had a hard time focusing on anything outside of myself. My sole focus was on me and my ecstasy and my pleasure. I had to find relief to my own negative thoughts and emotions and sex was the vehicle that I used. 

I believe that it was harder for me to see because I didn’t understand my own feelings and my own body. I rarely talked about my own feelings and rarely spoke about my experiences of depth and importance to another adult, if ever. My emotional maturity has only started to take root in the last few years. It is sad to write that when I just had my 36th birthday. 

Men and boys rarely speak about their feelings. I know I didn’t. My Mother always tried to get it out of me. I think we were driven apart over the years because she was always trying to find a way in and it only drove me farther away. I would come home on the weekends after going on a date or spending time with friends and my Mother would bombard me with questions. I would usually just say “Hi, I’m home” and then I would head down to my room. I never practiced story telling of my experiences. I definitely didn’t talk to another adult about my make out sessions or my experiences of intimacy with girls. I was too embarrassed to speak about these experiences with an adult.

I believe it is very difficult to be vulnerable and to be completely transparent about our feelings and our thoughts. I know that it takes a lot of bravery to share your experiences and your true thoughts. I was always extremely fearful of being ridiculed and rejected. I think that my greatest fear that I have felt my entire life has been the fear of rejection. I don’t like feeling isolated and alone. The truth I came to know is that the more transparent you are, the more whole you will feel, because you begin to understand yourself better. The secondary consequence is being able to really establish your true tribe.

Know that you will discover negative feelings and negative thoughts. That is ok. We are all imperfect. We are all human. It is a great discovery when you identify where you have gone wrong in a thought or analysis of a story in your mind and life. A lot of times I saw incorrect analysis’ or judgements that I had made, when I evaluated my thinking. This is when you can start taking back your own consciousness.

#addiction #sexaddiction #pornaddiction #recovery #health #life #love #addictionrecovery #somaticexperience #hope #fightthenewdrug #nofap

Focus on Mental Health

My road to recovery was a number of things. First and foremost I had to have talk therapy. I highly recommend Sexaholics Anonymous because it is free. You can google where you can find meetings in your area, if you can’t make it to a meeting, you can even call in. Sexaholics Anonymous started me on a 12-step program. That included reading “The Big Book”, that was originally written for Alcoholics Anonymous in 1939 for individuals struggling with alcoholism. The primary author William G. Wilson (Bill W.)  is the originator of the “twelve-step method”. 

I also sought out licensed professionals in my area for counseling. My disclaimer is that this is not cheap and insurance doesn’t cover this type of treatment in a lot of circumstances. Do your research to find the right fit. However, don’t feel crippled by not knowing which therapist to see. Act now. See one in your area and start getting treatment as soon as possible. You can always change counselors if payment is not something that you can maintain or if you don’t like your counselor. A lot of these counselors can work out payment plans. Your counselor is legally bound to keep your conversations private and confidential, so you can trust them. I spent around $20,000 on my recovery with counselors. I know that this is not always possible. I wanted to write this blog and make it available to help carve out a path to recovery. There are also applications popping up that allow you to speak to a counselor through calls or texts. Start by talking to them about your negative emotions and thoughts, not necessarily about your porn or sex addiction. Your thoughts are fueling your behaviors. You have to understand your thoughts well enough to know why you behave the way that you do. 

Talk therapy allows you to really start to hear the voices that are in your head. As you start to hear yourself, you can start hearing the lies. It is almost as if you start to see the thoughts in your mind like subtitles or like ticker tape headlines operating underneath your current life experience.

Sometimes we operate in life in a default auto drive. We need to recognize our selfish thoughts. We need to see our ego bulldozing over others to achieve what we want. We need to see the thoughts of justification in our own minds and we need to dissect those thoughts and break them down to the simplest and the smallest parts to find the lies. 

Before you can have a personal evolution, you first need deep personal exploration. Physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. 

David Foster Wallace- This is Water

Have you ever watched the commencement speech by David Foster Wallace called “This is Water”? He gave it at Kenyon College on May 21, 2005. Please do your future self a favor and watch it on Youtube. 

Mr. Wallace challenges the graduates to evaluate their default operating thinking system. 

My summary of the video is that as we grow and mature we start to create our own perceptions of the world. Everything that happens in the world is happening to us. We are at the center of the Universe. Our perceptions are our truth and they are our reality. Our view is all we can see because that is all we know. 

Our perceptions only change when we allow them to be changed. We only allow them to be changed when we see that our perceptions of the world no longer serve us and we search for more meaning. We will only allow our views to be changed if our former beliefs, philosophies and behaviors no longer make sense, or if they cause enough pain. 

My favorite quotes from the David Foster Wallace Speech:

“Learning how to think really means learning how to exercise some control over how and what you think… It means being conscious and aware enough to choose what you pay attention to and to choose how you construct meaning from experience.”

It’s a matter of my choosing to do the work of somehow altering or getting free of my natural, hard-wired default setting which is to be deeply and literally self-centered and to see and interpret everything through this lens of self. People who can adjust their natural default setting this way are often described as being “well-adjusted”, which I suggest to you is not an accidental term…

..And I submit that this is what the real, no bullshit value of your liberal arts education is supposed to be about: how to keep from going through your comfortable, prosperous, respectable adult life dead, unconscious, a slave to your head and to your natural default setting of being uniquely, completely, imperially alone day in and day out.”

“Blind certainty- a close-mindedness that amounts to an imprisonment so total that the prisoner doesn’t even know he’s locked up.”

The main thing for me was becoming more self-aware and more reflective. For that, I needed to find perspective. 

Perception: a way of regarding, understanding, or interpreting something through our senses. 

In order to make sense of the world around us. We have to start to attempt to assign meaning and significance to our experiences. In order to do that I had to better understand what my perspective really was. 

What were my thoughts, and why were they the way they were? 

What teachings and what framework of cultural conditioning helped me to have the understanding that I did?

Only then can you start to see what emotions drive you to seek pornography or sex. What is the feeling that drives you to act?

It is important to analyze yourself without judgement. You are more than the behaviors that you display.

You need to be brave to see what you have been avoiding. It is not easy to look at the worst parts of yourself. It is not easy to admit fault. As humans we have to feel the pain strong enough and long enough to have the determination and motivation to change our perceptions. Grow when you are ready to grow. 

You see I never expected to be the guy that was dishonest and sneaking around. I never wanted to arrive to betray people in my life that I loved. I have spent the last few years doing an introspection of my thought processes to see what motivated me to do what I did. Because I have walked this path, I think that I can offer some guidance and introspection to the infected mind. I do this to call attention and awareness to the problem so we can fix it. If you are not part of the solution, you are only feeding the problem. Here is an eye opening statistic. Today in America 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 5 boys will be sexually assaulted by the time they are 18 years old. Please, let’s stop the pain. Being in pain is not justification to do things that hurt others. Hurt people, hurt people, but that doesn’t make it right. Understand your own mind and thoughts so you don’t end up harming others.

#addiction #sexaddiction #pornaddiction #recovery #health #life #love #addictionrecovery #somaticexperience #hope #fightthenewdrug #nofap

Knowing what is possible

Here is one of my most favorite quotes of all time:

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.

Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.

It is our light, not our darkness

That most frightens us.

We ask ourselves

Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?

Actually, who are you not to be?

You are a child of God.

Your playing small

Does not serve the world.

There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking

So that other people won’t feel insecure around you.

We are all meant to shine,

As children do.

We were born to make manifest

The glory of God that is within us.

It’s not just in some of us;

It’s in everyone.

And as we let our own light shine,

We unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.

As we’re liberated from our own fear,

Our presence automatically liberates others.”

– Marianne Williamson

Begin the work to take back your mind, your identity, and your perceptions

When my wife left me, I knew I had to change my state of mind. I had to change who I was to become a better father and a better person for my future self. I didn’t know if my wife would ever forgive me and I didn’t know if I had just lost my family forever. I had a decision to blame others and wallow in my misery or I could make a decision to change my path. I didn’t choose to have this challenge or ailment, but it was still my responsibility to recover from it. 

Nobody is going to save you, you have to save yourself.

The difference makers

These are the 7 steps I took to take my name and my identity back.

  1. Focus on your Mental Health. Balance your negative emotions. Find a counselor or a support group to work through your thoughts and your heavy emotions. Speak your thoughts. 
  2. Journal- Develop your inner voice and shun the thoughts that don’t serve you. Getting your thoughts down in writing allows you to begin to really see your thoughts.
  3. Growth Mindset- Feed your mind to escape this cycle. There are mountains of knowledge out there. I have tried to put together a starter kit in this blog.  You must read and listen to content that lights you up. The books and podcasts that I have read and listened to in the last 2 years have provided light and happiness in my life. 
  4. Exercise. Take care of your body. We need to detox our bodies and our minds. Sweating through physical exercise is helping your body to detox. 30 minutes a day.
  5. Be outdoors- Hike, bike, run, be in water. The Earth is healing.
  6. Be Alone for the purpose and intent to Meditate. Take time to yourself to ponder the things you are learning. 15 minutes a day.
  7. Become a producer of good works- Contribute positively to society. Age omne bonum. Do all good.

I will address these steps in the upcoming blog posts.

#addiction #sexaddiction #pornaddiction #recovery #health #life #love #addictionrecovery #somaticexperience #hope #fightthenewdrug #nofap

Thank you Paula

Recently my mom’s best friend past away. She has been one of the sweetest and most kind souls that I have ever met in my life. She would never speak ill of anyone, ever. She always had a loving essence around her. I was blessed with her influence mainly through a second layer. She was my Mom’s best friend, but yet I still felt her power.

Paula was taken from this earth by brain cancer. Cancer takes too many people we love. I feel like we need to check our perception of cancer. Brené Brown teaches that growth happens through discomfort. She said that she has not accomplished anything in life or professionally in comfort. I believe that death is another form of growth. Growth from this phase of life to the next. Paula is growing in her existence and in her intelligence. Paula is still progressing spiritually.

Now, I am not speaking of any religious theory or dogma in particular. I personally don’t believe in organized religion anymore. I believe in spirituality. I believe that this life is only a phase of our existence and those beautiful people who pass from this life, are growing into something else.

I will give you a real life example from my life. My Grandpa Blymiller was not around much growing up. I maybe saw him 5-6 times in my whole life. I mainly saw him on Christmas Eve at the Blymiller Christmas party. He wasn’t there every year, only sporadically. If you know my Father, you know he lived a rough life. His whole family has stories of heartbreak from the death of Mickie Blymiller, my dad’s sister when she died in a car accident at the age of 16. Well in 2008, as my Grandfather was at the University of Utah on his death bed, we were all told to go in and say our goodbye’s. All I could think of to say to him was “I’m sorry.” I’m sorry for not finding a way to connect with him in a way that made him want to be around me and my family. I know he heard me. I have felt him in my life.

I personally struggle with addictions and challenges similar to my Grandfather, and my Grandpa’s story and his influence have provided me with strength. Now I tell this story because it is real to me and if you search your family line, you will find stories that connect people’s pain to how they act. Emotional pain influences how we behave.

I encourage us all to take this pain from the passing of Paula, and we transform it into energy that Paula can use. Now Paula has always been an angel in people’s lives. She has provided people with compassion, love, and empathy. She is being called on a mission to grow those powers to help even more people. Paula is not leaving us. She is in us. She lives in us and through us by the example that she set in our lives. I know it hurts to see the people that we love leave this earth. The only thing that seems to make sense, is that they are going to serve a Higher Purpose. Paula is going to be one of God’s greatest love warriors available to him. I believe that if we allow our energies to be transformed into love, compassion, and empathy, Paula can take those energies with her to do the work that she has been called to do.

The Beginning of Healing

If you can relate to my letter. If you can see yourself in some of the story. The first thing that I want you to think about is this quote. “You are more than the worst thing that you have ever done.” (Bryan Stevenson)  in his book – “Just Mercy”

The Awakening

I mentioned my Mother in Law in the letter. She hugged me and told me she loved me when she had every right to be angry and upset with me. That was a lesson on love. 

When I called my best friend to tell him about what I had done, he said:

“You know this isn’t you right?”

I said: “What do you mean?”

Best-Friend: “This is not you, this is not who you are.”

My wife, The greatest blessing in my life, even in her trauma was able to separate me and the behavior of sexual addiction. I was not defined by this behavior. 

I think sometimes as humans we try to define ourselves in simple digestible terms. For example, we identify by our name, our religion, our race, our ancestry, the schools we attend, the cities we grew up in, sports we like, music that we identify with, etc. We are more than 1 thing. We are more than the first 10 things that you can think of. Our uniqueness, our humanity is so complex that you can’t package yourself in a sentence or even in a volume of books. Our unique humanity is so complex that time is a construct that limits our ability to express our divine complexities. Your Twitter and Instagram “Bios” can’t even come close to defining you. Your soul is beyond measure. Your potential for producing good and marvelous work is so great. So it is time to realize your potential no matter what you have done. 

I know from my experiences that the men that are committing sexual violations can be good people. They could be your best friend, they could be a family member, they could be your neighbor. They could be your boss and they could even be your religious leader. I am sure that you have already been shocked by a news report that has come out naming someone that you know closely that has committed a horrible act. Or you have heard of the heart break from a broken marriage, where someone that you know closely has betrayed someone that you love. 

I remember growing up that you could easily know who the bad guy was in your cartoons and your movies. The character is so plainly depicted from the beginning of the story. As you get older you start to realize that sometimes you don’t know who the bad guy is until you have already been wronged. I would argue that sometimes you are the bad guy in the story and you don’t even know it until it is too late. You might arrive to a point in your life where you have caused so much pain that sometimes the wreckage can be overwhelming. How did you get to this point? How could you let this happen to yourself? How did you allow yourself to be the villain in someone’s story? How could you cause so much hurt?

There is hope you can change

I never expected to be here. I never expected to arrive to a point in my life where I had caused so much pain to the people that mattered most in my life. I never expected to be the villain in someone’s story. Yet here I am. Breathing, barely remembering to breathe as I witness the wreckage. The wreckage that I caused. Trying to map out the first steps to get myself to a better place. At first the task seems so daunting and so insurmountable that you have to just hope and hang on to other people’s hopes for you. Hopes for what you can become. 

#addiction #sexaddiction #pornaddiction #recovery #health #life #love #addictionrecovery #somaticexperience #hope #advancedbraintechnologies