Are You Burned Out in Your Own Personal Recovery Program?
It is not uncommon for you to reach a point where you feel burned out as you work your recovery tools. Almost every addict goes through this process and it can be a wakeup call to reinvent yourself or fine extra meaning in the steps that you're taking.
There are 10 tasks or tools that promote and enhance good solid recovery. I have them listed under the tab Hope for the sex Addict. Once you have solidified this solid recovery, you may hit a plateau where your recovery program seems mundane, boring, and no longer gives you that exhilaration that you once felt as you were working a solid program and seeing great results. You may even feel discouraged and begin to question whether what you're doing is really the key to happiness and success.
Follow the 7 Recovery Tasks to Help You Find the Map to Recovery
I want to talk about sex addiction and some tips that I think will help to keep you organized and working towards your goal of abstinence, recovery, and living that better life. You know me; I’m a mental health therapist of 37 years, and I’m a life coach, so not only do I want you to get healthy and to work good recovery, but eventually I want you to take your life to the next level. You can do that once you have a couple of years of recovery under your belt.
I wanted to talk about something that Dr. Carnes recommended in his book, The Recovery Zone. This is an incredible book, talking about the 30 tasks that that can lead you into recovery. He’s been around a long time and he knows what it’s going to take for recovery.
Help Your Coupleship by Working the 5 A’s
Couples say to me, what can we do to begin to get to a place where trust has been restored. The answer is simple, you have to participate in empathy. Empathy is the ability to put yourself in somebody else’s shoes. In this situation, it really does require that both the sex addict and the partner be able to do that. However, my belief is the addict needs to help the partner achieve this first.
One of the things I really encourage is to remember the 5 A’s.
As a sex addict, are you aware of a time when you can show her empathy? You know how people put the “what would Jesus do” bands on and that helps to keep the guiding light? I would ask you to wear a band that says, how can I empathize with my wife?”
The Sex Addict
If You Have Slipped and Relapsed, Get Honest
Coping with stress means staying in the present and evaluating how you feel in this very moment. How would you rate your stress today on a scale of 1 to 10? I know that if you’ve been ravaged by addiction, you’re probably closer to a 1. What I do believe to be true is when you are working a good recovery program, you’re moving towards a 10. When you learn how to live in the moment, you have gratitude for what is happening to you today and you stay proactive and ask yourself “what can I do to work a solid recovery program today,” you are more likely to do the next right thing in your recovery. So, what happens when you’re moving towards recovery and you slip or relapse? Slipping is when you click on an image or look at a women’s catalogue or jump on an adult personal site but you don’t do a “deep dive” into the addictive behavior.
When Do You Need to Reset Your Sobriety?
I had a man in my office today and he had been talking with a woman that he had an affair with previously. He said, “we were just talking.” I said, “is that in your inner circle?” He said, “No, that’s my middle circle, that’s slippery slope behavior.” I remarked, “You are in denial, that is wrong and will likely cause you to slip or relapse. He said, Well, I’m not going to take away my 272 days of clean time because you think I was doing something outside of my sexual integrity, because I didn’t act out sexually, I was just talking.” I said, you know what, what you did was absolutely wrong. It is not healthy to talk to old affair partners; you’re a sex addict. Come on, who are we fooling here?
If you remember, Patrick Carnes says the first thing that I am to do is to break your denial. The denial is you think you can talk to somebody, and if it hasn’t gone to (sexting), it’s okay.