Addiction to pornography is a real problem just like any other form of addiction. It could waste time and damage your health and financial well-being. It could potentially ruin relationships with spouses and family, destroy any enjoyment for an actual sexual relationship and intercourse, interfere with the job and affect self-esteem and confidence. It’s an addiction, similarly difficult to shake like another form of addiction, which will take efforts and mental prowess to escape from. Dedication and sometimes even necessary intervention from professionals can help you conquer this bane of your life.
How to overcome pornography? Learn what you can do to help yourself or another to overcome this addiction.
How to Overcome Pornography: 8 Practical Steps to Help You Away From Pornography
Identify the Symptoms
How to tell if your porn viewing is relatively normal or is starting to cross into dangerous addiction territory? Watch out for the following symptoms and signs to identify if the porn you watches are indeed dominating your daily life:
Difficulty in avoiding viewing porn or pornography associated activity, despite trying to avoid it altogether
Anger or irritation when someone (or yourself) asked you to stop watching pornography
You keep your porn usage a secret from your friends and families (not that they should know your intimate practice in the first place, but you get the idea)
You ended up having a double life just to hide your porn consumption
You didn’t cease your viewing activity despite the consequences, e.g. failing grades or suffering relationships
Being too absorbed in your porn viewing leads to lost track of time
Understand the Causes
Endorphins, the happy causing chemicals, is released in the brain when you enjoy something, giving you that high. Drugs and sexual arousal causes this endorphin to release that large amount for the immediate high, helping to alleviate stress, anger and depression. This relief is merely temporary and the more you get used to it, the faster it dissipates. What ends up is a vicious cycle of using more and more of the drug or pornography in this case to reach that high. Often, increasingly graphic and violent pornography viewing follows suit with the need for longer viewing. It is not merely a behavioral choice, but addiction leads to a change in the brain patterns that make it much more difficult to overcome. Furthermore, pornography offers an alternative to people with sexual or intimacy problem, often resulting in isolation from the sexual deprivation.
Identify Your Triggers
Keep a journal and write down every time you have the urge to watch pornography. Write down the situation you are currently in, the scene you thought of before you have the cravings, mood, things you were doing and your general feeling. Lack of sleep, stress, convenient access to pornography or hearing from friends that are sexually active are several possible triggers.
Cut Off Your Sources
Get rid of those temptations in the first place. Limit or even cut off your entire access to your sources for pornography. Try out the following tips to eliminate your viewing habits:
If you owned pornography on DVDs, scratch them up real well, then throw them away.
If you are old fashioned and still use magazines, tear each of the individual pages and feed them through a shredder. Burn them if you could.
The invention of the internet makes viewing porn much easier than before, convenient and sometimes free. Install a browser extension that will automatically block any porn from showing. Alternatively, putting in the effort to block all the websites altogether works just as well.
Deal With Loneliness
Loneliness can lead to people to use more and more porn. Put in the effort to make new friends or meet people, especially if you start isolating yourself more. Build a healthy relationship and focus on maintaining that relationship to avoid having yourself being alone all the time.
Cultivate a Better Environment
Your environment or community might lead to your excessive pornography consumption. Maybe you have friends that often encourage or talk about their porn usage. Maybe the internet access makes it so convenient and accessible for you to get tempted to view more pornography. So these are the things you should avoid, in order to cultivate a better environment.
Addiction initially comes from a habit that slowly turns into excessive abuse. Boredom is a factor that leads to that habit. If you are just not in the mood to do anything productive, porn seems like the way to go. If you can kill the boredom and fill it up with productive activities, then you will start kicking your porn habit.
Breaking the Cycle
The ultimatum for how to overcome pornography is to fully terminate your pornography consumptions entirely. This is the easiest way to stop your endorphins cycling. Expect tons of withdrawals as you now have to face your actual problems, instead of avoiding them by watching more pornography. Depression, frustration and anger will continue weeks after you cease, which will gradually improve as your brain copes with it. For compulsive users, more severe coping strategies might be necessary to keep them far away from pornography, with the existence of the internet, it be so much more difficult for them. Try out the following options:
Keep yourself busy with family and friends
Sign up for activities that get you away from pornography, such as outdoor camping.
Exercise regularly, not only are you going to keep yourself fit, exercise release endorphins which can help to replace the high you need
Get help from a friend and family to help you remain clean
There is always the option to go to a professional to help you get over the addiction