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Planned sobriety and AVRT

Old 07-15-2014, 07:09 AM
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Planned sobriety and AVRT

Greetings all! I have done a little browsing on here and am wondering what your thoughts were on planned sobriety? Meaning, you plan ahead of time which day you want to get sober and that's the day you start. I've read about this in the past, and think there's even something in the Rational Recovery book about it. Is there anyone here in the forums that this has worked for?

I've used AVRT over the past 6 months or so a couple of times, and I get to around the 30-day mark and then allow the beast to talk me back into drinking again. My belly-button birthday is this Thursday and I'd like a fresh start. I also realize I need a little support and accountability from you guys, since that's one of the pieces that was missing in the past. Any and all feedback is certainly welcome! Blessings...

-Chris
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Old 07-15-2014, 07:26 AM
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welcome to SR

AVRT was extremely helpful for me. There is a great thread here on the secular forum about RR and AVRT in the Sticky section at the top, I recommend a perusal.

Why isn't right now, today a 'good' day?

wish you well, and hope to see you around
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Old 07-15-2014, 07:30 AM
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Originally Posted by dwtbd View Post
Why isn't right now, today a 'good' day?
To be quite honest, I got clean a few years ago on my birthday (7/17/11). It wasn't planned, it just worked out that way. Screwed that up last year, and now trying to get back on track. There's something about having a day that is special, especially when it literally is a birthday. Kind of a date you never forget, plus it might help give me that extra incentive to keep that date once I get it back. Is this an irrational approach to Rational Recovery? LOL
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Old 07-15-2014, 07:33 AM
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Hello ChrisM and welcome.

I have never trusted "planned sobriety" because it sounds a little too much like "trying" to quit. I tried to quit drinking multiple times, usually on a Monday morning after a weekend of "one last party" where I drank even more than usual. Of course, that left Monday with me in bad shape, nauseous, headache, and looking for "hair of the dog."

Have you read the AVRT crash course at the very least? Jack Trimpey's book? I mean, really read it?

I see lots of AV in your post, such as "I also realize I need a little support and accountability from you guys...". AVRT is not a support group and was never meant to work that way, at least to my understanding. Your Big Plan is made for yourself and nobody else, and you are accountable only to yourself.

Having said that, I also enjoy some reinforcement for what I do. However, for me quitting drinking (1991) was an identity shift to being a non-drinker, and I had to learn to wear my new self-identity before I was comfortable. There is no guarantee that making and following a Big Plan will be comfortable, but it is a commitment made to yourself. Never rely on the support of others, or the minute that your Beast perceives it to be lost or diminished in any way, your plan is over and done with.
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Old 07-15-2014, 07:46 AM
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So has your sobriety FT been completely attributed to AVRT and Rational Recovery? It sounds like it is. And I loved everything you said. You are absolutely right. I've read much of Jack's book, but will re-read. I am also on the website reading thru the crash course again.
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Old 07-15-2014, 08:04 AM
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I quit drinking before I discovered AVRT, but the AV and Beast concept were very much the same as what I did, even if I did not have those names for them back then.

I did use AVRT to quit opiates after orthopedic surgery. It can be used for any kind of Beast associated behaviors.

You can do this. Get a firm grasp of AVRT and take a stand against your drinking. I personally do not see anything wrong with setting a date, as long as you don't keep setting dates, "starting" AVRT, and setting a new date. Really mean it when you make your Big Plan. After you have self identified as a non-drinker, all decisions regarding alcohol become very simple. Not necessarily easy, but very simple. You just do not drink, any more than a vegan would even consider consuming an animal product.
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Old 07-15-2014, 08:14 AM
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Originally Posted by FT View Post
I personally do not see anything wrong with setting a date, as long as you don't keep setting dates, "starting" AVRT, and setting a new date.
This is the first time I've ever set a date - simply because I'm sick of all of this stuff and it happens to fall very close to my birthday. Not the first time with AVRT necessarily. Perhaps that's the biggest key is REALLY getting the RR under my belt this time - for good!
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Old 07-15-2014, 08:24 AM
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Well, I've noticed many people end up with a start date after a wake-up moment, like waking up after having blacked out, realized you got home, with the kids, and don't remember driving...that kind of thing. I woke up Saturday morning and realized I hadn't made dinner for the kids and saw the empty wine bottle on the kitchen counter and my hidden stash of a half-full whiskey bottle was empty. Somehow I managed not to get arrested or kill anyone by 7-12-14 and that became my start date. No point really in waiting, Mr. Liver wants a break! But sure, Thursday is better than never.

Whatever you do, try not to drink like a maniac the day before, try to cut back now so you don't have a bad withdrawal.
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Old 07-15-2014, 08:30 AM
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I set a date because of the med program my doctor put me on. I was tapering down for a week while the meds built up in my system.
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Old 07-15-2014, 08:44 AM
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" If you feel ready, go ahead. You can make a Big Plan now or later, but it's all the same to you. To your Beast, now is never acceptable." (Pg. 144 RR: The New Cure)

So today, tomorrow, next Thursday...the Beast will not be happy with any of those. For the Beast, no time is ever a good time to quit.

But you...I bet you would like to be done with alcohol right now.

The Big Plan is personal, it has nothing to do with anyone else. I do suggest rereading the book, especially chapter 11.
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Old 07-15-2014, 08:53 AM
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I checked with The Old Farmer's Almanac, and today and the 20th are the best days of the month to "quit smoking" or "wean animals." This is based on astrology, mostly the moon's phase.

You would be a real hero among recovered alcoholics if you quit today! And if you wait until Thursday, expect things to start feeling better Sunday.
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Old 07-15-2014, 08:56 AM
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yeah, i set dates. several times.
these were delaying tactics, i think, so i could keep drinking a bit longer.
but it did and does make rational sense to me in the way of "preparing", getting "ready", except that getting "ready" and such is nonsense.
it's not like i needed further practice in order to be "ready"

when i finally quit, i had set a date for after my upcoming holidays, but then had a moment of clarity and was so DONE with it all that i quit then and there, just before my holidays.
worked out just fine.
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Old 07-15-2014, 09:01 AM
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I made numerous "plans", always had a plan to quit. Rock Bottom was what made me quit. So glad I am here, 4 days sober, 3 mornings waking up to no hangover. It's a blessing.
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Old 07-15-2014, 09:10 AM
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Whenever you quit, it will be 'now'. Out of all the 'nows' that are and can be, this one right now is the best, and it's the only one where we can make anything happen.

Believe in yourself, that you deserve a life without all this alcoholism crap, and that you are going to have it, no matter what else may possibly come at you. Onward!
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Old 07-16-2014, 03:45 PM
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planning a date for sobriety is like a new years resolution. rarely do we keep them.
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Old 07-16-2014, 10:31 PM
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According to AVRT the only time to do anything is now. If you decide to quit "later" then later will eventually become NOW and it won't be any easier. Again, AVRT-wise the accountability is to yourself. Still, support won't hurt.

In the best way I can put this it doesn't sound like you fully committed to AVRT. The part you're missing is the "And I will never change my mind." The Beast shouldn't be able to talk you into drinking again! Not if you are truly committed. Like Yoda said, "Do or do not. There is no try."

I went through the Crash Course/Bullet for my Beast slide show in Oct 2012 and haven't had a sip since. You can do it!
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Old 07-17-2014, 08:22 AM
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Originally Posted by MythOfSisyphus View Post
I went through the Crash Course/Bullet for my Beast slide show in Oct 2012 and haven't had a sip since. You can do it!
Yeah...what is that? Where do I access this?
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Old 07-17-2014, 08:28 AM
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Chris, google (or use any search engine), Rational Recovery The Crash Course for the link.
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Old 07-18-2014, 12:40 AM
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Originally Posted by ChrisM View Post
Yeah...what is that? Where do I access this?
I'll PM you a direct link. I'm not allowed to post it openly since technically it's a commercial company. But the Bullets for my Beast slide show is totally free, and it's the only thing I've used to stay sober since Oct 2012. Well, that and SR!
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Old 07-22-2014, 07:27 AM
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Good morning everybody! Just a little check-in to say that today is day #6 and I am so incredibly thankful to be back on the healthy side of the line again. This forum has been wonderful, chock-full o' information, encouragement and insight...
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