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Addictive Voice Recognition Technique (AVRT) Discussion

Old 10-03-2011, 05:11 AM
  # 441 (permalink)  
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Question: Instead of buying a bottle of my favorite vodka to bring out The Beast, I started out by bringing up an image of the bottle on the internet. Looking at it made me feel like dry heaving, no exaggeration. I was flooded with all this sensory recall ranging from how the cold glass would feel in my hands, to how the red aluminum cap would unscrew to that first whiff that always made me want to puke before I could somehow get my first few drinks down. In fact, as I am typing this I just brought the image to my screen and it made me shudder. What effect am I looking for eventually? No reaction at all?
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Old 10-03-2011, 05:17 AM
  # 442 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Terminally Unique View Post
Never let the Beast take control of the first person pronoun, "I" always keep it separate, an IT.
Yeah, for the most parts this works extremely well for me. It's just been a bit much yesterday and it didn't go away that easily like it did in the last days. It's only been something like two weeks (not sure exactly... not really counting the days this time...) so I guess I am still learning all the details about the beast. No matter what, I am not going to drink as I don't want to.

Thanks again, TU.
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Old 10-03-2011, 06:16 AM
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What, you mean there's not going to be any "orgy of ********** HUUUGGGSSS }}}}}" on this thread??? My beast really prefers meaningless positive reinforcement. lol
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Old 10-03-2011, 07:24 AM
  # 444 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by freethinking View Post
Question: Instead of buying a bottle of my favorite vodka to bring out The Beast, I started out by bringing up an image of the bottle on the internet. Looking at it made me feel like dry heaving, no exaggeration. I was flooded with all this sensory recall ranging from how the cold glass would feel in my hands, to how the red aluminum cap would unscrew to that first whiff that always made me want to puke before I could somehow get my first few drinks down. In fact, as I am typing this I just brought the image to my screen and it made me shudder. What effect am I looking for eventually? No reaction at all?
If I recall correctly the reaction you are looking for is an anticipation of the glow or warmth you felt from alcohol (or whatever effect drew you further into addiction).

I know exactly what you mean about the dry heaving too!
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Old 10-03-2011, 07:57 AM
  # 445 (permalink)  
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Seeing alcohol only sometimes made my Beast want it (actual physical alcohol is disgusting to me...the smell, the taste, it's only the effect that I'm addicted to), my Beast's usual trigger is emotional. Like rejection, high stress levels, boredom...those will usually incur a Beast activity party in my head because it's so excited for the opportunity to talk me into using alcohol to feel better. It doesn't get too excited over an image of booze though because it knows it needs a stronger motivator than that to get me to move towards consuming the nasty crap.
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Old 10-03-2011, 07:57 AM
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Originally Posted by Terminally Unique View Post
Just want to say that I'm more or less pleased with the way this thread has turned out, and that it hasn't devolved into an orgy of ********** HUUUGGGSSS }}}}} like many other threads. :-)

If the cut-off count from other threads is any indication, I reckon we'll be moving on to "Part 2" soon...
I've gotten kicked off a few threads or been talked to by Admin for a little too much "tough love" on another forum. I'm glad that's not likely to happen here!

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Old 10-03-2011, 08:51 AM
  # 447 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by AprilMay1895 View Post
What, you mean there's not going to be any "orgy of ********** HUUUGGGSSS }}}}}" on this thread??? My beast really prefers meaningless positive reinforcement. lol
Yes, indeed it does. Have you ever observed two drunks/junkies who meet for the first time? Even though they may have nothing in common except for their use of hedonic substances, they are usually magically drawn to each other as if they were long-lost friends, with an instant rapport. What is really going on is that their respective Beasts are keenly aware the other's Beast, and it is their Beasts, not them, that have an instant rapport.

This is why friendships and relationships based on addiction often quickly end after one member gives up their precious stuff, and is also why newly-abstinent people always want "support" from other who are newly-abstinent. What they fail to realize is that it is their Beast that wants support, a ****{HUG}}} when it "relapses" and does what comes naturally, which IT will interpret as "Congratulations!" and think "Wow, isn't this nice? I get tanked and get a hug for it! We'll have to remember this!"

There are a few sections in "RR: TNC" which deal with this phenomenon. See "Mingling of Beasts" and "The Society of Beasts" on page 161 and "Beasts in Love" on Pages 164-169.
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Old 10-03-2011, 09:12 AM
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Originally Posted by ElvisInASkirt View Post
If I recall correctly the reaction you are looking for is an anticipation of the glow or warmth you felt from alcohol (or whatever effect drew you further into addiction).

I know exactly what you mean about the dry heaving too!
Yeah, the actual site of the sh*t vodka I used to drink definitely does not make me want to drink....I think what *could* trigger me is seeing people drinking around the holidays, etc (people looking like they are having a good time). Maybe I'll try and find some sort of images like that and see what happens.
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Old 10-03-2011, 09:35 AM
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Beasts in Love sounds like a good chunk of my college dating life. lol I'd meet a guy, realize we both had extreme drinking habits and we'd continually hang out and drink from then on. Instant best friend. What I knew about his personality??? Not much, nor was it important. My Beast also really loved this because not only could it get its booze fix without shame, but it also knew I felt validated by having a guy that wanted to be around me and I wouldn't remove myself from the relationship for that reason either. My Beast was really living the life then....snug as a bug in a rug, yeah I said it. lol
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Old 10-03-2011, 09:55 AM
  # 450 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by freethinking View Post
Question: Instead of buying a bottle of my favorite vodka to bring out The Beast, I started out by bringing up an image of the bottle on the internet. Looking at it made me feel like dry heaving, no exaggeration. I was flooded with all this sensory recall ranging from how the cold glass would feel in my hands, to how the red aluminum cap would unscrew to that first whiff that always made me want to puke before I could somehow get my first few drinks down. In fact, as I am typing this I just brought the image to my screen and it made me shudder. What effect am I looking for eventually? No reaction at all?
I'll respond more in-depth later, but for now, review the "Relapse Anxiety Grid" on page 190 of "RR: TNC," and the section on "Shifting" on pages 202-204. You may also want to review "Aggressive Listening" and "Attack your Beast" on pages 205-208.

If the "+" and "-" symbols on the "Relapse Anxiety Grid" don't mean much to you, replace the "+" with a and the "-" with a and you'll get the idea.
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Old 10-03-2011, 09:59 AM
  # 451 (permalink)  
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Since we are not hugging in this thread I'll ask a blunt question.

Why is it that RR can't work without bashing people, threads, forums, moderators, recovery groups, treatment centers, etc...

Whenever I've seen RR discussed over the years there is always a lot of inflated ego involved and a lot of disruption on the forums. RR is not the only topic that has had the problem. Hardliner 12 step groups also have the ego driven threads and posts that always point out flaws in others.

This is why these groups have not lasted on SR. Is there a way to use RR and AVRT without constantly pointing out the flaws in others?
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Old 10-03-2011, 10:28 AM
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Hi Morning Glory,

I guess I never saw RR as pointing out the flaws in others...maybe in other recovery groups though. I think this can happen by default because AA and RR are on polar ends of each other. It's especially difficult to switch from AA to RR without discussing why AA didn't work and how it can be toxic to what RR believes. I guess I never felt actually bashed by anyone else on this thread, even though I'm new. The way I see it, we're just trying to follow our addiction recovery method. Any pointing out of flaws is just to help with the method. Unless people are actually going around saying, "you're a dumb moron" to each other. Then, I can't stand behind that. lol
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Old 10-03-2011, 10:38 AM
  # 453 (permalink)  
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I understand that the groups are polar opposites, but I think we can come up with a solution that allows you all to use RR without mocking other methods that our members use here or mocking the support they give even if it's a hug that you all disagree with.

I don't mind discussions when there is confusion about changing from one method to another if it is done without mocking or calling another method nonsense.

I am not a member of any recovery group and am looking at this from the outside. I have no bias.
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Old 10-03-2011, 10:43 AM
  # 454 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Morning Glory View Post
Why is it that RR can't work without bashing people, threads, forums, moderators, recovery groups, treatment centers, etc...
I don't know about the first four, since I wasn't bashing them, but the last two certainly trash everyone and everything, including doctors, psychiatrists, psychologists, alternative recovery groups, and especially self-recovery, on a regular basis. They just don't do it when they think someone is watching.

Addicted people never tell the whole story to never-addicted people, and they themselves often don't even realize what is going on, but it is not a coincidence that April instantly recognized the truth in the mingling of Beasts analogy from her own life. AVRT requires a split between the addiction and the normal self, and it is important to recognize which part is seeking support, and for what purpose (usually diametrically opposed), in order for it to work.

Originally Posted by Morning Glory View Post
Whenever I've seen RR discussed over the years there is always a lot of inflated ego involved and a lot of disruption on the forums. RR is not the only topic that has had the problem. Hardliner 12 step groups also have the ego driven threads and posts that always point out flaws in others.

This is why these groups have not lasted on SR. Is there a way to use RR and AVRT without constantly pointing out the flaws in others?
There is, but if that "flaw" is feeding the addictive desire or is being driven by addictive desire, it must necessarily be exposed. AVRT offers moral support for the human self and the human capacity to overcome obstacles, but it cannot show any mercy on the addiction.
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Old 10-03-2011, 10:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Morning Glory View Post
Since we are not hugging in this thread I'll ask a blunt question.

Why is it that RR can't work without bashing people, threads, forums, moderators, recovery groups, treatment centers, etc...

Whenever I've seen RR discussed over the years there is always a lot of inflated ego involved and a lot of disruption on the forums. RR is not the only topic that has had the problem. Hardliner 12 step groups also have the ego driven threads and posts that always point out flaws in others.

This is why these groups have not lasted on SR. Is there a way to use RR and AVRT without constantly pointing out the flaws in others?
Are you referring to something specific in this thread?

I don't think I have ever personally bashed AA here, but I will say that I do believe parts of RR and it's methodology are saving my life. Literally. I was told repeatedly in AA that if I did not do it their way, I would end up in jail, dead, or in a mental institution - yet I simply could not buy their program and I felt horribly guilty for it. I really felt I only had 2 choices: to drink, or to somehow magically buy AA's program....and since AA never resonated with me, I felt destined to drink myself to death (how does one convince themself in believing in something that they just can't believe in?). I felt like there was no other way. So in finding out about RR and AVRT, to say I was consumed with relief was an understatement. To find like-minded people who had also failed at AA and yet still had a genuine desire to stop drinking was so comforting. Not "getting" AA is something a lot of us here have in common since it is the most widely prescribed and first "go to" for people with drinking problems. I suppose that is why there is some exchange about what facets of AA didn't resonate initially when one finds RR, but I think the more open-minded people here do not bash AA (it's more like "Wow, so I'm not the only one? Phew! What a relief!"). I've met some really awesome people who are sober through AA and I don't think they are stupid people....but I do think they march to a different beat than I do.

I am trying to reread recent posts to see what was offensive here but can't find it...
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Old 10-03-2011, 11:00 AM
  # 456 (permalink)  
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It is worth noting that there is "cross-traffic" in both directions. Some people read about AVRT, don't like it, and then join a recovery group instead. There were certainly a lot of people who went over to SMART Recovery when RR shut down its meetings and made AVRT the centerpiece.
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Old 10-03-2011, 11:12 AM
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I actually left my last AA meeting thinking the only way I could ever see myself not drinking alcohol is if I got pregnant; I couldn't possibly ever care enough about myself to stop drinking but could see myself doing it for another being. But a few days of hovering around this thread, going through the RR book(still not even the whole thing. lol) and I took to the method like a sponge to water and haven't had a drink since Friday...no self-induced pregnancy involved! lol Everything makes sense and everything that is said about AA was something I already thought about it before I read it on here or in the book. I'm with freethinking on the "Wow, there's more people like me? What a relief!" part. And I think blunt honesty is something most RR followers aren't scared of, and in my guess by judging my own personality, we actually have a great appreciation for it.
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Old 10-03-2011, 11:17 AM
  # 458 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Morning Glory View Post
I understand that the groups are polar opposites, but I think we can come up with a solution that allows you all to use RR without mocking other methods that our members use here or mocking the support they give even if it's a hug that you all disagree with.
I have stayed out of the 12-Step forum as of late so as not to divert them from their chosen method of recovery, although I will grant that I do sometimes get sucked into such threads if they show up on the main forum. I'm working on that one. :-)
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Old 10-03-2011, 11:46 AM
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Please keep it in mind that I am trying to make RR work here so those who can't use other methods get the help they need. I'm not attacking anyone. I'm trying to find a solution to avoid problems. I think it can be discussed respectfully. You can point out what may trigger 'beast" activity from other methods if it is really something you are having a problem with. General remarks against the other methods when there is no real issue from a member isn't necessary and causes problems.
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Old 10-03-2011, 01:11 PM
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Originally Posted by kanamit View Post
I'm relatively new to AVRT and Terminally Unique has been most hopeful. I wonder if I might post a few of my own questions before we hit the limit:


[1] I am finding myself envying those who have more time under their built. I know you'd say right away this is Beat activity. However, the reason is because my body hasn't fully reset itself from years of alcohol. Is that still Beast activity?
Keeping track of time is, generally speaking, for the purposes of AVRT, counter-productive, because the Beast has no concept of time. If you want to see a vivid example of this, think to yourself "I will get drunk a hundred years from now, in 2111." You should notice some feeling of anticipation coming from the Beast, since you have just provided it with a boozing opportunity.

Of course, you know that you'll be dead before then, but the Beast can't comprehend that. It only sees an opportunity to drink again, and you can be certain that it will try to shorten those 100 years until it starts asking "well, why not drink tomorrow, then?" Stay in the present, and don't worry about how much "time" other people have. You will get over the short-term effects of alcohol withdrawal soon enough, usually around 90 days or so, and it will get easier.

Originally Posted by kanamit View Post
[2] I find occasional feelings come on: anxiety, sadness, indecision from mind racing; is this withdrawal or Beast activity? Can the Beast really make you feel those things?
It depends. Yes, there will be some anxiety initially, since alcohol is a CNS depressant, and your system is rebounding from that. It will also take some time for the depression to lift, but if chronic depression continues past 90 days or so, you may have depression independently of your addiction. If the depression does not lift, it might be a good idea to see a PDOC about it. You could certainly consult with one beforehand, though, but bear in mind that any further drinking will counteract any medication, and possibly have other negative side effects.

You should, however, attribute any sadness or sense of deprivation on account of not drinking to the Beast; ie, "IT misses alcohol, because IT feels deprived and is sad because I am killing IT." Remember, the Beast, since it originates in your base brain, does have feelings, just like any other dumb animal. In fact, feelings are probably all it has. As far as it is concerned, if somethings feels good, do it, and if it feels bad, don't do it, and to hell with the consequences to you or anyone else.

Originally Posted by kanamit View Post
[3] Does likening drinking to the ultimate immoral act help? I still think deep down the Beast has a bit of a hold on me because I don't quite fully view drinking in the light I should. One previous poster mentioned it to sleeping with her ex-husband. I think of some of the scenes in London I saw of the riots that made me feel sick…yet the idea of drinking doesn't do that. right now it's more of something i no longer do. Should it?
It does help in that if you believe that, you will intuitively recognize the Addictive Voice, almost without a thought. However, you don't necessarily have to get to that point, it simply being "wrong" might suffice for you. To be honest, one could conceivably make a "Big Plan" for decidedly selfish reasons, such as making lots of money. In other words, if you love money, and you can never get enough of it, and drinking is negatively impacting your ability to make lots of money, you could decide that you will never drink again on account of that.

Originally Posted by kanamit View Post
[4] Is it normal to normal to feel a bit shaky as you learn the technique? My Beast is saying to me, "You thought this AVRT thing was your ticket out of here but when you read this thread they know a lot more about it than you. Good luck. You're going to need it,=."
The Beast is going to be throwing doubt at you to undermine your confidence and get you to drink again. There is no great mystery to AVRT, nor is it particularly complicated, but the AV will either tell you that it can't possibly be this simple, so it can't work, or that it is so complicated that you will never get it. Don't worry about how much "more" people seem to know on this thread. Learning from others on here is simply a bonus, because you could learn AVRT entirely on your own simply by reading the book a few times and practicing.

Abstinence is a learned skill, and the more you do it, the easier it becomes. AVRT will build on itself as you use it, until eventually you will barely even think about it. Set your confidence level arbitrarily at 100%, recognize all self-doubt as a product of the AV itself, and you will do fine. When you are confident that you will never drink again, you are as recovered as someone who has not touched a drink in 30 years. I kid you not.
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