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Addictive Voice Recognition Technique (AVRT) Discussion

Old 09-30-2011, 05:24 PM
  # 401 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by freethinking View Post
If, by some chance, I met someone who drank daily from 10am until 8pm and had gotten into some sort of trouble from drinking (financial, DUIs, etc) and they had no desire to quit - yes, I would still consider this person to be an alcoholic despite the fact that they did not want to quit.

I'm a little confused by your 2nd paragraph here....to be abstinent means to have abstained (from anything), period....however what we were discussing was use of the term "sober".
It seems that the term "sober" does not have its roots relative to alcohol consumption, but rather a somber mood, or facing cold, hard reality. As when someone becomes sober from abstinence from substances.

If I am to understand TU, the term "sober" doesn't have much if any meaning within AVRT? Abstinent is the preferred term is my take on this. I get that because, to me, to be sober would imply a comparative state in that the person being so categorized is or was at least some of the time "not sober". While not a dictionary definition, to me sobriety or the state of being "sober" is definitely a comparative term.

Substitute the word "addicted" for the words "an alcoholic" in your above paragraph and it takes on different meaning, if I am to understand the term correctly as used by AVRT. While the person would certainly seem to fit the definition of "alcoholic" or "substance abuser", they may not be "addicted" at all, if they never have an issue with being without alcohol between their binges. Some people do drink when the can get alcohol, and leave it when they can't get it or can't afford it. They don't take unusual measures despite the consequences to the their "fix". To me, these definitions have shades of gray depending on who you are asking, what you are trying to explain, or within what paradigm it is being defined within.

Ay, more synapse pain.

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Old 09-30-2011, 05:31 PM
  # 402 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by AprilMay1895 View Post
Dissociate...you know, I do that all the time with people in my life...I decide they're no longer good for me and I just cut them off. Is that what people do with "the beast" then? Recognize it, tell it to eff off because it's not helping you and then go on with life?

My plan is to drink the last of my beer I have left in my fridge tonight as my farewell to booze, then read the book tomorrow and make my commitment to no longer drinking. I know this sounds incredibly shady because it starts with "my plan is to drink the last of my beer". lol But this has been my plan for the last couple days, after I get a day to study the method, then I have to start applying it. Maybe it still sounds shady. Oh gosh, well I'm letting the beast live for one more night is what I'm saying it and then breaking up with it tomorrow. Now it sounds like I'm a guy breaking up with a bad girlfriend but sleeping with her one more time the night before. Ok, I better stop typing(and no, I haven't started drinking the beer yet). lol
Why not try my "cold duck technique" that I described somewhere earlier in this thread?

In other words, DON'T DRINK THAT BEER. Leave it in the fridge for "looking at". Take that "looking at" beer and give it the finger. Sorry to be crass, but you should be able to practice AVRT and still have the beer in the fridge.

Granted, that may seem like a stupid technique, but it is exactly what I did when I quit drinking alcohol. That bottle (cold duck in my case) represented everything I hated about my life at the time, the control alcohol had over me. When I decided to take control, I rejected the bottle in the fridge, the grocery store, the restaurant, or anywhere else I encountered it. When it's time to quit, it's time to quit. What I hear you doing is putting off quitting drinking. Why should tomorrow be so different. Making plans to quit drinking while under the influence is very easy to do.

Just my two cents.

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Old 09-30-2011, 07:32 PM
  # 403 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by failedtaper View Post
If I am to understand TU, the term "sober" doesn't have much if any meaning within AVRT? Abstinent is the preferred term is my take on this.
This is correct. Abstinence is the preferred term.

Although the dictionary definition of "sobriety" is "the state of being sober," and the definition of "sober" is "not affected by alcohol; not drunk," the term has become a loaded word. This is why you get these threads on this forum about what a "relapse" is, or what "real sobriety" is. You'll also hear things along the lines of "I was just maintaining my abstinence, but I wasn't really sober," as if sobriety were another plane of existence.

Within AVRT, this is rubbish. Recovery is secure, permanent abstinence; nothing else. Therefore, abstinence is what counts, not some nebulous definition of "sobriety" that nobody can agree on. If the term is used, it means not drunk. It goes without saying that because of this, within the AVRT paradigm, there is also no such thing as a "dry drunk." :-)
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Old 09-30-2011, 07:43 PM
  # 404 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by failedtaper View Post
"Personal problems don't cause addiction; addiction causes personal problems."

The phrase above reminds me of the age old puzzle, which came first, the chicken or the egg?
Another of the primary functions of the Addictive Voice is to conceal the real purpose of getting drunk or high, which is to get that deep pleasure. It will twist and manipulate any and all circumstances into excuses for further drinking/using.

Just read the newcomer's forum for a whole gauntlet of them. Many will go around in circles for years trying to discover the mysteries of the "underlying causes" of their addiction, all the while never actually quitting. If you turn the tables on the Beast with this reversal, though, all of its excuses become not only obvious, but irrelevant, and you can focus on the task at hand.

To get an idea of where I am going with this, consider this riddle: if personal problems caused your addiction, when new personal problems inevitably come up again (and they will), are they going to cause you to become re-addicted?

Your Beast certainly hopes so...
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Old 09-30-2011, 08:54 PM
  # 405 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by failedtaper View Post
AVRT is such a sensible and no-frills concept, and I subscribe to the belief that most human beings are capable of self-determination and self-control that supersedes any notion of "powerlessness". I also do not subscribe to the notion of alcoholism or drug addiction as a disease, except that those problems to cause disease in many people -- both physical and mental.
AVRT is indeed no-frills, and puts an end to all of these theoretical discussions that might distract you and derail you from actually quitting your addiction. For the purposes of AVRT, the sole cause of your addiction is your Addictive Voice, that annoying @#$% that tells you to keep on drinking and getting high. :-)
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Old 10-01-2011, 08:14 AM
  # 406 (permalink)  
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Love freedom, hate the prison of addiction.

When the Beast surfaces I now focus on my reaction which is a cringing tension inside.

Then I think to myself 'that is not me'. I do not want the booze. It wants the booze but I am the ************ in charge so it is free to die.

I am watching.
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Old 10-01-2011, 08:33 AM
  # 407 (permalink)  
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When considering the "addictive voice", I am reminded of the autopsy scene in the movie "Men in Black".

In that scene, an autopsy is being done on an alien who is disguised as a kind old gentleman, who was killed by another alien trying to find "the galaxy on Orion's belt".

The old gentleman is on the autopsy table, and the pathologist (a beautiful brunette) and Will Smith are shocked upon opening the skull to find a tiny little alien in a little cockpit inside the guy's head, at the wheel in the cockpit, and in his death throes.

I imagine myself at the wheel of the cockpit inside my head, and I am the one driving.

Personally, I am not going to let my "addictive voice" take the wheel.

If you haven't seen the movie or remember that part, it's worth looking at it again just for the analogy.

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Old 10-01-2011, 09:12 AM
  # 408 (permalink)  
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I don't know if this should go here, but it's bugging me.

Since I made the decision to never drink, I've noticed some things. Like, I'm eating more and exercising less. I'm picking at my eczema. I'm not showering every day. What the heck? I make a decision to better my life by not drinking and everything else falls apart? When I was drinking, I did not pick at my eczema, I showered and shaved every day. I took better care of myself as a drunk. What is happening?
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Old 10-01-2011, 09:22 AM
  # 409 (permalink)  
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This is just my thoughts, but here is what I think is happening. While drinking or drugging, we are anesthetized from life. It's one of the reasons/excuses we abuse our substances, to numb ourselves from the world.

Whatever problems you were anesthetizing yourself from will still be there when you are no longer anesthetized. In other words, by not drinking, you have removed the buffer system you set up to block the world.

Many of the things you describe in your post are signs of depression. This by no means is a diagnosis on my part, just a thought. Many people in recovery experience depression, whether it was pre-existing or not.

I went through this, too, but then got misdiagnosed and placed on all the wrong drugs for me. When I recognized I was being made sicker by psych drugs, I quit them all just like I quit alcohol. This was a long time ago, but I remember it well. I wound up later on healing myself in a manner similar to AVRT, but I didn't know about it then. I did go back to a different doc, got a very simple medication to help my own depression and anxiety. But I think the thing that helped me the most was a book called "Worry" by Hallowell. You can Google it if you want to know more about it.

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Old 10-01-2011, 09:27 AM
  # 410 (permalink)  
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Thanks for the book recommendation. I am a huge worry-wart! I think you nailed it about not being anesthetized.

I love your Desiderata quote. Have you heard LazyBoy's "song"? Here it is. I love it.

Desiderata - LazyBoy - YouTube
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Old 10-01-2011, 09:37 AM
  # 411 (permalink)  
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I think if alcohol is truly responsible for helping you with motivation with showering and shaving then it follows that the more alcohol you consume the more you'll shower, shave and have all your stuff in order.

I know for me that wasn't the case but I certainly experienced a huge spike in hunger when I stopped drinking. Had me worried at the time. Almost felt like getting my jaws wired shut

Think FT nailed it!
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Old 10-01-2011, 10:39 AM
  # 412 (permalink)  
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A note on "Dr. Beast"

A note on "Dr. Beast"

Since there has been mention of anti-depressants on here, it is a good time to relay an experience of mine. Back when I was drinking quite a lot of whiskey, about 750mL every night, I felt very depressed (go figure!), so I decided I would go to the doctor and get a prescription for Prozac (fluoxetine). The doctor told me it doesn't mix well with alcohol (a depressant), and the warning label on the bottle said something along the lines of "do not drink alcohol with this medication."

So, I stopped drinking for a week to let the prozac take effect, and indeed, it did seem that it was starting to take effect. But then "Dr. Beast" popped up and said "well, since you are no longer as depressed, surely you can have some whiskey now."

I recalled the label on the prozac, and what the doctor said, and thought it was a very bad idea, but Dr. Beast went on with "What does that doctor know, anyway? You drank to 'cope' with your depression, so now that you aren't as depressed, you don't have to 'cope' as much, and you won't drink the whole bottle like usual."

This sounded like good reasoning to me, and I started drinking again. The fluoxetine held its own for a while, but it didn't make a dent in my alcohol consumption. Soon enough, the alcohol negated the fluoxetine, and I was just as depressed as ever. Dr. Beast had outwitted me.

Moral of the story: there is not a psychiatric medication on Earth that will "work" if you don't quit drinking and ingesting concentrated amounts of high-proof central nervous system depressants.
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Old 10-01-2011, 11:33 AM
  # 413 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by kicknNscreamin View Post
I don't know if this should go here, but it's bugging me.

Since I made the decision to never drink, I've noticed some things. Like, I'm eating more and exercising less. I'm picking at my eczema. I'm not showering every day. What the heck? I make a decision to better my life by not drinking and everything else falls apart? When I was drinking, I did not pick at my eczema, I showered and shaved every day. I took better care of myself as a drunk. What is happening?
You have been ingesting high-proof depressants for a long time, and probably caused quite a wreck of things as a result. Your body is rebounding from all of the wear-and-tear, and you now have "nothing to do" to fill all of your time, all the while being able to clearly see the results of your addiction. In short, you are depressed, which is quite common, since addiction directly causes depression.

If you weren't depressed as a result of your addiction, though, I would think that you had a few screws loose. In Rational Recovery, this is called the addicto-depressive condition, and you should go back and read about it in "RR: The New Cure," specifically on pages 100, 186, 280, 286, and especially 325.

You may want to seriously consider regular exercise as a way to not only alleviate it, but also as a way to replace your old habit. Standard psychiatric protocol usually requires 90 days of abstinence before a definitive diagnosis of depression separate from withdrawal can be made, so if it continues beyond that, I would certainly recommend consulting with a PDOC, although you can certainly do so before then.

Many shrinks have a nasty habit of referring everyone to recovery groups, often with a meeting list in hand, however, so if you consult with one, and they do this, be sure to tell them that you have chosen AVRT as your method of maintaining abstinence. In fact, I would recommend taking a copy of the "Rational Recovery: The New Cure for Substance Addiction" book with you to show them if this happens.
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Old 10-01-2011, 11:49 AM
  # 414 (permalink)  
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Thanks for bringing your concern up kicknNscreamin. It's nice to know that I shouldn't be expecting butterflies and rainbows w/out booze in my life (as was implied with another program I've experienced) but that I should think of some rational replacement activities in order to combat the feelings I drank myself away from before....or I could possibly drive myself up a wall. lol

So question, have you who followed AVRT ever applied imagery to your beast? Or maybe made of list of "wrongs" it's done to you? Since I'm just starting out, I'm wondering if there are certain things I can do to enhance an aversion to the beast.
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Old 10-01-2011, 12:12 PM
  # 415 (permalink)  
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Hi AprilMay1895,

While not truly imagery, I like Eckhart Tolle's description of "the pain body", that dark part of all of us that seems to function kind of like our own personal black hole. Evidently, everyone has a pain body, which is larger and denser, or smaller and lighter, depending on the person and on the circumstances. Another poster gave a description somewhere on here, but my resource is Tolle's book, A New Earth.

Other than that, my imagery involves the little guy in charge of the cockpit in my head, and I'm going to be in charge of who takes the wheel.

I hope your drinking plan from your other post has finished playing itself out. I hope you realize that was your Addictive Voice speaking in that post. At least I think so:

My plan is to drink the last of my beer I have left in my fridge tonight as my farewell to booze, then read the book tomorrow and make my commitment to no longer drinking. I know this sounds incredibly shady because it starts with "my plan is to drink the last of my beer". lol But this has been my plan for the last couple days, after I get a day to study the method, then I have to start applying it. Maybe it still sounds shady. Oh gosh, well I'm letting the beast live for one more night is what I'm saying it and then breaking up with it tomorrow. Now it sounds like I'm a guy breaking up with a bad girlfriend but sleeping with her one more time the night before. Ok, I better stop typing(and no, I haven't started drinking the beer yet).
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Old 10-01-2011, 12:25 PM
  # 416 (permalink)  
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Yeah, I knew it was my addictive voice but since I came back to these forums (last Tuesday) I never made any formal plan to stop drinking. I went back to AA just last Tuesday too which was what made me come back to these forums, and I have been learning since then that there are other options for recovery. I knew that this method is something I want to do. Just needed to assign a formal day to start it...which is today. Maybe it sounds ludicrous, but it makes sense to me. I read on this forum Terminally Unique's levels of the beast's anxiety when making "I will not drink until..." statements. 1-5 were incrementally painful but 6 made me feel like I could breathe again. I am sick of the battle of wills between me and my addiction, I just want it gone for good.
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Old 10-01-2011, 12:45 PM
  # 417 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by AprilMay1895 View Post
I read on this forum Terminally Unique's levels of the beast's anxiety when making "I will not drink until..." statements. 1-5 were incrementally painful but 6 made me feel like I could breathe again. I am sick of the battle of wills between me and my addiction, I just want it gone for good.
Number six is the Abstinence Commitment Effect (ACE). You know what you need to do. Take the crash course link I sent you, and then read the book, preferably when not hungover. Since you have been exposed to other recovery paradigms, read the book in order, and do not skip the first 90 pages of the book, which are essentially de-programming from beliefs that may interfere with AVRT.
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Old 10-01-2011, 06:24 PM
  # 418 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by ElvisInASkirt View Post
Love freedom, hate the prison of addiction.

When the Beast surfaces I now focus on my reaction which is a cringing tension inside.

Then I think to myself 'that is not me'. I do not want the booze. It wants the booze but I am the ************ in charge so it is free to die.

I am watching.
It sounds like you are getting the hang of the I/It split. Keep at it, and with practice, it will become second-nature, like riding a bicycle. Once that happens, you'll eventually be able to recognize the AV in posts all over this forum.

Read the book, though!
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Old 10-01-2011, 06:52 PM
  # 419 (permalink)  
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More Beast Bait

AprilMay1895 asked about how to develop an aversion to the Beast, so here you go, April.

Ask yourself:
"Given my own history with alcohol/drugs, is it morally right or morally wrong for me to ever drink/use again?"

What does your Beast think?

What do you think?

Spend some time shifting back and forth, but pay attention, because your answer will probably seal your fate. If you've finally had enough, you will likely hate what your Beast loves (the buzz), and your Beast will probably hate what you love (living free); each of you will answer the question accordingly.
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Old 10-01-2011, 07:26 PM
  # 420 (permalink)  
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My beast thinks it's morally right to drink again because I was born with a disadvantage (partial facial palsy...not as big of a deal as the beast makes it to be) and therefore I should have the right to escape reality and be free as no one else I know has to deal with this.

I think it is morally wrong to ever drink again because even if I am at a disadvantage when compared with others, drinking only makes things worse. There's is nothing about drinking that improves my chances at happiness in life, it only reduces them.
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