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Addictive Voice Recognition Technique (AVRT) Discussion — Part 4

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Addictive Voice Recognition Technique (AVRT) Discussion — Part 4

Old 03-07-2012, 08:28 AM
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Keep reading, Hosea. I look forward to your input when you are done.
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Old 03-08-2012, 10:42 AM
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Hello everyone

I'm new to this forum. I've read the book and just started a second reading. I'm working my way through the AVRT threads which are fascinating and onto Part 2 but just have a couple of questions

1. Can my big plan be so simple as I will never drink again? Is this sufficient? Obviously, that is my plan. Does it not need to be more detailed?

2. Less technical question-do you recommend reading the book again before I read through these threads or is it ok to do it in conjunction with the threads?

Thanks
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Old 03-08-2012, 10:47 AM
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Originally Posted by justhadenough View Post
1. Can my big plan be so simple as I will never drink again? Is this sufficient? Obviously, that is my plan. Does it not need to be more detailed?
It is up to you to make a Big Plan in such a way that it makes perfect sense to you. There are a few posts on the subject somewhere in this thread. Personally, I came up with the following wording to make sure there was no 'wiggle room':

"I will never drink/use again, and I will never change my mind — for better or for worse."

Originally Posted by justhadenough View Post
2. Less technical question-do you recommend reading the book again before I read through these threads or is it ok to do it in conjunction with the threads?
If you've read the book once already, you can probably go ahead and read through the thread. We've touched on some nuances already, which may help you on a second reading.
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Old 03-08-2012, 01:29 PM
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I went to a pub today. No big deal.

Anyway, I met a friend who is a big drinker; we used to drink a lot together. They had a lot of guest ales on and he was trying to get me to try some of them but I ordered my usual soda water. He was clearly disappointed and, like all heavy drinkers, was a bit upset and uncomfortable at drinking alone (to start with). In this case what part of him doesn't like drinking alone: him or his Beast?

Is he reminded of his own addiction or is his Beast annoyed this won't turn into the usual drinking session?
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Old 03-08-2012, 02:20 PM
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Originally Posted by kanamit
In this case what part of him doesn't like drinking alone: him or his Beast?

Is he reminded of his own addiction or is his Beast annoyed this won't turn into the usual drinking session?
Awwww....his beast didn't have anyone to play with...so sad
Of course his beast was annoyed. Beasts like to have their way, and when they don't get it they behave in all kinds of weird ways. I say tough sh*t lol
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Old 03-08-2012, 02:34 PM
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Seeing as his Beast had a supply of drink at hand I wondered whether the ill feeling might come from part of him wanting to have a soft drink too (I.e. being ambivalent).
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Old 03-11-2012, 04:00 PM
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It's been along time since I have been around. I've got 4 months sober, but, my pesky beast has been playing me hard this week in anticipation of St. Patrick's day. He keeps saying, "come on...your young, no dui's, no one will even care or know, it's just one day and then you can quit". I came back here to just read some of the stuff some people are saying so I can remember it is just my beast talking and it is ok just to ignore that pesky little guy. The real me can do whatever I want, and that is not drink, ever.

Anyways for anyone that is thinking about AVRT it works. This is the longest I have ever been sober and I haven't gone to any meetings or talked to some annoying sponsor.
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Old 03-12-2012, 05:29 AM
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I am continuing to benefit greatly from this ongoing discussion. I am also amazed at the many times I come across AVRT and the Beast in the world, outside of this thread and the RR book.

I just picked up a book called The Willpower Instinct, which I thought was just another book on willpower and how to break habits, but the crux of it is about the neocortex versus the urge parts of the brain. I'm still at the beginning, but the author talks about the development of the 2 parts of the brain and how we need to strengthen the neocortex (the rational part) and learn to separate it from the urge part of the brain. One way to strengthen the neocortex is to meditate daily. We have a tendency to let thoughts run rampant in our brains all day long. We identify and attach to these thoughts. The point of meditation is not to try to shut off thoughts, but to notice them and not get attached to them.

This relates to RR in that AVRT is about noticing and separating from the beast in our heads. meditation is a good way to develop that recognition and separation. I used to be a daily meditator and have been wanting to get back into it and will as of today. My beast has been loving my procrastinating.
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Old 03-12-2012, 05:35 AM
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I don't know how to edit so I just wanted to add..... It's important not to argue with the beast, it seems like some people on this thread still do. I see comments about knocking the beast out and talking back to it and letting him have it, etc. I think I did that a lot too. But I think we should approach the beast more like thoughts during meditation, just notice them and which part of the brain they are coming from and set them aside.
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Old 03-12-2012, 10:22 AM
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Hello, I haven't read through this thread. I will need to do that later when I have more time.

I do have a question about the beast (and this may be a dumb question). How do some people only drink one or two glasses of wine every once in awhile without having the obssessive thoughts and need to drink more. I mean if we all have this beast within, why is it so much louder with some of us?

Is it because we have been feeding ours on a regular basis. I have friends who drink wine now and then, they stop at 2 glasses and they probably don't think about it until their next time.
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Old 03-12-2012, 10:59 AM
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Originally Posted by sarah1414 View Post
How do some people only drink one or two glasses of wine every once in awhile without having the obssessive thoughts and need to drink more. I mean if we all have this beast within, why is it so much louder with some of us?
Sarah,

Not everyone has a Beast, and you didn't always have one, either. I believe you would agree that you didn't always have this 'obsession', no? I touched upon this in the following posts, though there may be others.

As for why you can't have just one or two drinks without stopping, this is covered in "The Rationale for Abstinence" on pages 123-126 of Rational Recovery: The New Cure for Substance Addiction. If you have not read the book yet, you will want to do so, as it provides a far broader framework for AVRT than the free crash course does. If you are concerned about the price, you can pick up a used copy on Amazon, Half.com, or Barnes & Noble online for about a dollar.
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Old 03-12-2012, 11:26 AM
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T.U., Thank you for the links.

O.k. That makes more sense to me now.

I have read parts of the RR book. I'll have to read through the book again. I've also got a lot of reading to do here! Thanks for all the time you spend here responding to people. This is very, very helpful.
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Old 03-13-2012, 03:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Terminally Unique View Post
A very interesting thread where GirlFromCO finally took the plunge, made her Big Plan, and felt the Abstinence Commitment Effect (ACE).
I've been more of a lurker here than a participant. I still haven't read the book, but have been using the method to very successfully disassociate from my AV. I've avoided drinking alcohol for the past 9 months.

However,I've never been able to fully embrace the lifelong commitment. I've been operating without a big plan.

Last night I did a lot of reading through this thread...something I hadn't done in a while. I came across the link to GirlfromCO's story and for once I could fully see the gift that having a Big Plan delivers...freedom.

I woke up this morning...the morning of my 9 month anniversary btw...fully committed to a lifetime of sobriety and it feels truly wonderful. I can take in a big breath and on the exhale really meditate on the joyousness of the meaning in "I will never drink again, and I will never change my mind".

Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

Now I am truly recovered and I did it myself.

I'm so happy.
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Old 03-13-2012, 05:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Tippingpoint View Post
I can take in a big breath and on the exhale really meditate on the joyousness of the meaning in "I will never drink again, and I will never change my mind".

Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

Now I am truly recovered and I did it myself.

I'm so happy.
Cherish your Big Plan, for it is pivotal in your life, and your ticket to freedom from not only the bondage of addiction, but also its hangover, the never‑ending 'process of recovery'. For my part, my 'sobriety date' means absolutely nothing, because I did not become free on the day of my last drink. The words in my Big Plan, however, sound absolutely beautiful, and anyone who doubts them be damned. I am fully and permanently recovered — because I say so.

Congratulations, Tippingpoint, and welcome to the other side.
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Old 03-13-2012, 01:32 PM
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My 9 months has been good...better than where I was for sure.

But this morning I just felt this sense of relief...like a weight had been lifted from my shoulders. A pervading feeling of happiness...a lightness of being.

I don't know if I fully realized it but I can see now that I was engaged in an internal struggle over my sobriety. I was bitter with my lot in life and not convinced that there weren't better options for me - I was holding out for some sort of reprieve that would never come - that could never come.

It feels monumental to me. I actually thought about trying to explain it to my wife this morning over breakfast but I worried that I'd sound ridiculous. "Guess what I finally figured out"?

Anyway. Thank you so much TU and to all the other great posters on this thread that share so unreservedly...your experience and wisdom has allowed me to slowly find my way through the metaphorical dark
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Old 03-15-2012, 07:09 AM
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Hey TU, I just wanted to jump in on this great discussion. As you already know I am pretty active on the friends and family side of the house. I have been reading through all 4 of these threads.

I went searching for something on AVRT the other day as I was noticing that I was finding it easier and easier to fill time with drinking now that my wife and I are separated. So I figured this would simply be a good time to just quit. If I allow myself to drink more or less I always seem to drink more rather than less.

I went to the AVRT web site, did the 28 bullets and the big plan. This is very similar to the approach I used for myself when I quit tobacco 15 years ago so I know it works.

Now to get to my real point.

I am a secular Buddhist in that I don’t see Buddhism as a religion but more of a philosophy with some good tools for living sanely, another point that moved me to just quit with the drinking as I have been much more active in my practice lately and find that I really enjoy living a sane lifestyle.

In my view of Buddhism the Beast is also known as the delusional stream of consciousness or the monkey mind and the tools that are used for dealing with that are meditation and mindfulness. The whole AVRT process dovetails very nicely with mindfulness where I pay attention to my thoughts but avoid attaching any desire to them. Desire/Thirst/Dhukka is the source of suffering. No matter what you feed the monkey it always wants more or the next thing or something else. It is never satisfied. So the best way to deal with it is to detach. Sounds familiar doesn’t it?

To me the AVRT process can extend to more than just addictive drugs and have a positive impact on your life by teaching you how to recognize impulsive thoughts, where they come from and detach from them.

So, thanks for starting these threads and you will probably see a lot more of me hanging out around here throwing a Buddhist/Taoist slant on the whole thing.

Your friend,
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Old 03-15-2012, 07:42 AM
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Originally Posted by m1k3
Desire/Thirst/Dhukka is the source of suffering. No matter what you feed the monkey it always wants more or the next thing or something else. It is never satisfied. So the best way to deal with it is to detach. Sounds familiar doesn’t it?
Very familiar to me. In fact I told TU how Buddhist it all sounds lol. You will see me throwing the same slant, Mike. The parallels are everywhere.
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Old 03-15-2012, 08:32 AM
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Originally Posted by m1k3 View Post
...thanks for starting these threads and you will probably see a lot more of me hanging out around here throwing a Buddhist/Taoist slant on the whole thing.
Mike,

I'm glad you decided to join us, since you bring a perspective that has been missing here thus far. In reading your posts from the Friends & Family forum, it is apparent that you have lived through the craziness and uncertainty of tentative abstinence interrupted by relapses, so I suspect you will appreciate the 'no relapse' approach of AVRT. This many not be strictly necessary for you, but I do highly recommend that you get a copy of the Rational Recovery book, which is far more comprehensive than the free crash course.

There is a section in the book for friends and family, which may be useful in your interactions on the F&F forum. I suspect that several people on the F&F side would appreciate AVRT-style recovery, and the hope for closure it brings, as some have commented to me in private that they appreciate my perspective. Unfortunately, I don't quite have the rapport with those on the receiving end of our craziness that would come naturally to you, so it may be helpful for the folks over on the F&F forum to have someone like you around with some knowledge of AVRT.

That said, welcome. I look forward to your input.
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Old 03-15-2012, 08:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Terminally Unique
I suspect that several people on the F&F side would appreciate AVRT-style recovery, and the hope for closure it brings,
I have often thought about this. I agree.
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Old 03-15-2012, 09:19 AM
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I agree, though while it is not as zealous as Al-Anon there is still a very strong 12 step and religious bias over there.

I have read a lot in here about people "fighting" with their beast. I'm not sure what AVRT says about that but to me the more you engage the greater the opportunity you are giving it. My approach is very much like the way I handle one of my grandchildren when throwing a tantrum. I smile, hopefully Buddha like, and then ignore it.

I have to admit with this break up with my wife that for the 1st time in 15 years I have had some cravings for snuff again. Not very often but it kind of surprised me the first time. My response is still "NEVER".

Your friend,
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