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Addictive Voice Recognition Technique (AVRT) Discussion — Part 6

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Addictive Voice Recognition Technique (AVRT) Discussion — Part 6

Old 12-23-2017, 10:08 AM
  # 361 (permalink)  
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MesaMan, I really appreciated all of your thoughts. Thank you truly for taking the time to write them out. I feel very lucky to have found this site and such a wonderful community of people willing to help each other out. Can I ask one more question...You mentioned living in the "SoberSphere". Does this sphere, to you, seem small, like a marginalized part of society? Or, just the opposite - like that's where everyone has been all along? I'm just curious.

I like the idea of the "toolkit" you mentioned also. I feel like I've picked up a lot of tools I didn't even know existed by visiting this site. By far the best thing I've stumbled upon is the concept of AVRT. I have had my depression/anxiety/OCD issues in the past, really all due to brain chemistry (this runs in my family). When I finally went on Prozac, I was rather quickly straightened out in just a few months after figuring out this new and improved brain . It turns out I had just needed to be medicated all along. Unfortunately, before I got this medication, I self-medicated with alcohol and built this addiction of mine. So, I really don't feel guilt about it, because I was just doing what I needed to survive. But...I don't want to just survive, I want to live and thrive, and that is only possible addiction free. Anyway, as I said, having had my OCD issues in the past, I know the mind is a powerful, powerful, POWERFUL thing. It can make you obsess and have compulsions, and yet, with the right mind control techniques, what you've obsessed over for years can be gone in mere moments if what needs to click actually clicks. I obsessed over something for years (it's too embarrassingly stupid to mention what), but the second it clicked to me that it was nuts, I so was over it. Done. Finito. I knew it was over right away and I almost cried with relief. My point: So, I believe that if I believe in AVRT, that this can make my brain "click" in the same way. I sure do hope.

Anyway, just some rambling thoughts. Thank you again. Everything helps.
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Old 12-23-2017, 10:21 AM
  # 362 (permalink)  
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Sohard
AV is any thought or image or future drinking or doubt in your own ability to remain abstinent. A big fat "NO" is the answer you give to any Beast activity , AV , but the answer is delivered by ignoring IT , not trying debate or engage IT to change Its tune , IT won't ,ever, that what IT does and is. But no worries , simply ignoring IT stops it in its tracks ,IT can't get ITs precious stuff without you listening to and agreeing with Its demands, if you have decided to never indulge Its desire for booze, ever again , why listen , don't , just recognize it for what it is and ignore it.
IT will/can be seemingly relentless and definitely annoying at first or st times , but when you have made a Big Plan and taken drinking as an option off the table , all ITs whining is for naught , you have decided it ain't gonna happen , the idea that it may happen nonetheless simply because it has happened in the past , is by definition AV and can be dismissed out of hand.
Give yourself permission to believe the cure for ending an addiction is as simple as unconditional commitment to abstinence, because it is , it is actually the only cure.
It may not feel 'easy' , at first, and getting used to the idea of actually have the power, or the stuff it takes to make such a commitment is the leap of faith needed to make a BP, but rest assured you Do have it in you, the only thing that says otherwise is AV , ignore IT , it's a known liar.
IT can only get what it wants if we don't separate from it and dismiss it. IT picked your username, just to keep the upper hand , break the illusion , the illusion of power is ITs only trick, smash it , Rootin for ya
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Old 12-23-2017, 11:58 AM
  # 363 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by dwtbd View Post
Give yourself permission to believe the cure for ending an addiction is as simple as unconditional commitment to abstinence, because it is , it is actually the only cure.
It may not feel 'easy' , at first, and getting used to the idea of actually have the power, or the stuff it takes to make such a commitment is the leap of faith needed to make a BP, but rest assured you Do have it in you,
Gosh, it's so hard to believe all it takes is giving myself permission. But I do, I believe you. I really think I do. I HAVE to believe you. Sometimes, I find myself mentally fighting against the wise words of you all on SR, as if YOU are the bad guys trying to get me into the cult. But, then I flip it around and realize you're the good ones, trying to save me from the cult I'm stuck in. Sigh. AVRT would say all I have to do it walk out the door, right? Or wait. That's my AV, right? I AM out the door.
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Old 12-23-2017, 12:31 PM
  # 364 (permalink)  
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Glad I found this thread. I just read two pages.
Your questions are so similar to me sohard.
Im a 41 year old alcoholic and drug abuser.
The last 20 years have been tough.
The last few years hell.
I need to beat this just like you guys.
Im going to read it fully now.
So nice to read succes stories.
Vinny.
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Old 12-23-2017, 02:14 PM
  # 365 (permalink)  
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What I call The SoberSphere of Folks just getting on and living their lives is also known as 'Rest Of World'. Where this kinda-Introvert now lives, Sober. The Graphic in the linked Article below helps explain the Drinking Demographic vs. Rest Of World. As a sotted Top Ten Percenter, I done my part via The Pareto Law! Absorb, if you will, the 30% + 30% figures for non- and light Drinkers. Rounded-up, that's 2/3rds of the Population, right? In any case, a Majority; one I was not a part of when Drinking. Being in the throes of Drinking Culture skews our Perceptions. Advertising and Social [Ab]Norms regarding Drinking engulf us.

~ Think You Drink A Lot? ~

This Article Graphic should absolutely not be used to conclude 'oh, gee, I'm not THAT bad'. That's not the point. In my drive to simplify - and not over-think - I have long liked the explanation that Alcohol is problematic if you think it is. It's not about Alcohol Units/Week consumption expressed in Ounces. Trying to reduce the discussion to Ounces/Week consumed is pure AV in a warped Mental Negotiation to give an Addict 'wiggle room' to falsely conclude they don't need to quit. Full Stop.

A HUGE advantage you have, Sohard, is that you've already quit 'something' via Mental Acuity [Recognition] and Heart/Soul-driven Discipline that worked instantaneously. So, you already know the Fire Drill called AVRT that allows you to take control while Alcohol-related situations get easier over time. Consider this: some Yogis slow their Heartrate to ~30 Beats/Minute in Meditation. Illusionist Harry Houdini did this same thing to buy time to pick unfamiliar Locks and free himself from Cages he was locked in Underwater. He made his Lung Oxygen work for longer periods through pure Mental Discipline. Folks lift Cars to free trapped Victims; exhibiting strength they did not know they had. The Terrestrial Mind/Body Connection is a fabulous thing, and has allowed People to up and quit Addictions over Centuries. And, they didn't have SR and on-line Resources for 24/7 Support!

Coping Tricks are A-OK in my Book. Wear a Rubber Band on your Wrist, and snap it when you undergo an AV attack to bring back your Sober focus. Pop a Mint in your Mouth. Read something quickly on SR right then and/or post. Call a supportive Pal. What_ever it takes during those difficult early Days. Sobriety gets easier as it becomes The New Normal. Further, Sobriety buys us time to subsequently, diligently re-tool ourselves to a Person transcendent from Addiction.
.
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Old 12-23-2017, 07:24 PM
  # 366 (permalink)  
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Mesaman, thank you so much for taking the time out of your holiday season to pass along what you've learned. I was struck by this comment: "Sobriety buys us time to subsequently, diligently re-tool ourselves to a Person transcendent from Addiction." From what I understand, it is really all about re-tooling oneself. It's a difficult feat to accomplish when I've spent my entire adult life (17-41) with an addiction (I quit smoking at 21 and was so proud, but then I immediately transferred it to drinking. Sigh.) So, it's hard to picture what I'm trying to achieve because I've never achieved it (if that makes any sense). But, I'm praying with time this substance-free me will become my new normal. And it will hopefully truly feel normal. And I just have to remind myself that failing is not an option. It is literally helping to use those old addiction neural pathways that I'm trying so desperately to make inactive. All my former work will have been for nothing. This is definitely the biggest battle of my life. I so appreciate your support. I'm grateful to be 2 weeks in.
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Old 12-24-2017, 10:00 AM
  # 367 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Sohard View Post
So, it's hard to picture what I'm trying to achieve because I've never achieved it (if that makes any sense)..
That does make sense Sohard. I don't think it's possible for me-as-a-drinker to know what me-as-a-non-drinker would be like anymore than I know what it would be like to play the piano or to speak French. But neither is it necessary to know. IMO it's easy enough to picture your desired future state as someone who doesn't drink and to resolve to bring that state about simply by not drinking, i.e you make a Big Plan. When you do that you will have become a non-drinker and so will know what it's like to be one!
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Old 12-24-2017, 02:24 PM
  # 368 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by AlericB View Post
That does make sense Sohard. I don't think it's possible for me-as-a-drinker to know what me-as-a-non-drinker would be like anymore than I know what it would be like to play the piano or to speak French. But neither is it necessary to know. IMO it's easy enough to picture your desired future state as someone who doesn't drink and to resolve to bring that state about simply by not drinking, i.e you make a Big Plan. When you do that you will have become a non-drinker and so will know what it's like to be one!
God I love the confidence that is such a requirement of AVRT, in the plan and in oneself. It's just incredibly comforting. I say I'm cured, so I AM!
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Old 04-02-2018, 06:12 AM
  # 369 (permalink)  
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Bumping AVRT Discussion Part 6 into 2018

Originally Posted by Sohard View Post
God I love the confidence that is such a requirement of AVRT, in the plan and in oneself. It's just incredibly comforting. I say I'm cured, so I AM!
Hi Sohard,

Yes, it’s not so hard.
YOUR confidence level is always 100%, since anything trying to take it below 100% isn’t YOU, it is your Addictive Voice.
And the Technique of Recognizing your Addictive Voice requires absolutely NO action of any kind. Just thought.

GT
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Old 04-02-2018, 04:13 PM
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Originally Posted by GerandTwine View Post
Hi Sohard,

Yes, it’s not so hard.
YOUR confidence level is always 100%, since anything trying to take it below 100% isn’t YOU, it is your Addictive Voice.
And the Technique of Recognizing your Addictive Voice requires absolutely NO action of any kind. Just thought.

GT
Well, it's working! I'm haven't had a drink in 113 days, and I actually stopped counting (to get this number, I had to look at a Quit App I downloaded on my phone at the start of this in order to keep track!). I'm so grateful to be at this point. I must admit though, while I feel ENORMOUS relief over being sober, sometimes I miss the kind of drugged relief/escape that only a drug - such as alcohol - can provide. Does that ever 100% go away? I know it's my beast and I won't listen. I'm just wondering if it ever 100% goes away at all moments in time for anyone. It generally just hits me at night sometimes, which I guess isn't too surprising.
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Old 04-02-2018, 08:24 PM
  # 371 (permalink)  
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For me the missing diminished when I examined what it was I was missing.

My AV attributes the loss of escape /relief to not intoxicating. My AV always suggested / promised that getting intoxicated provided escape and relief and I would agree and get drunk/high .
I’m not sure if I would say I ever really achieved the promised relief and or escape, certainly not in a healthy or life affirming sense.

I may miss the promise , who wouldn’t if it were true, yeah? Realizing the promise was/is a lie makes the missing really really small practically non existent , but brains can be weird so once in awhile the promise seems plausible for like a half a nanosecond
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Old 04-02-2018, 11:23 PM
  # 372 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Sohard View Post
Well, it's working! I'm haven't had a drink in 113 days, and I actually stopped counting (to get this number, I had to look at a Quit App I downloaded on my phone at the start of this in order to keep track!). I'm so grateful to be at this point. I must admit though, while I feel ENORMOUS relief over being sober, sometimes I miss the kind of drugged relief/escape that only a drug - such as alcohol - can provide. Does that ever 100% go away? I know it's my beast and I won't listen. I'm just wondering if it ever 100% goes away at all moments in time for anyone. It generally just hits me at night sometimes, which I guess isn't too surprising.
I cannot recall the sensation of being under the influence of alcohol or any other intoxicating drug except opioids which I needed following surgery almost two years ago. So, it has gone away 100% except for the hydrocodone pleasure, which I can still recall - somewhat. These are simple observations that I can instantaneously run through an AV filter and move on.

Your enormous relief is the Abstinence Commitment Effect, but your AV wants its oxygen and is trying to get you to feel that YOU miss the pleasure such that it would be better to not even remember that pleasure at all.

You are recognizing your AV as an anticipation of when will this unfulfilled desire end. And you recognize that as inconsequential.

I recognize my AV wanting to procure and use hydrocodone illegally. This is a sign of health, not disease. My appetites for pleasure/survival are functioning OK, and of course, I will not act upon that particular one. Recalling that pleasure is just as harmless as not remembering the sensations of booze or pot, or even caffeine or nicotine, which the case with me.
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Old 04-03-2018, 06:23 AM
  # 373 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by dwtbd View Post
I’m not sure if I would say I ever really achieved the promised relief and or escape, certainly not in a healthy or life affirming sense.

I may miss the promise , who wouldn’t if it were true, yeah? Realizing the promise was/is a lie makes the missing really really small practically non existent , but brains can be weird so once in awhile the promise seems plausible for like a half a nanosecond
I guess for me, I feel like I did achieve that release and escape through drinking, but admittedly in a non-healthy and none life-affirming sense, before my alcoholism progressed. In the moment, it still felt good (I think?), until it felt bad.

I like your point about "the promise". Interesting.
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Old 04-03-2018, 06:26 AM
  # 374 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by GerandTwine View Post
I cannot recall the sensation of being under the influence of alcohol or any other intoxicating drug except opioids which I needed following surgery almost two years ago. So, it has gone away 100% except for the hydrocodone pleasure, which I can still recall - somewhat. These are simple observations that I can instantaneously run through an AV filter and move on.

Your enormous relief is the Abstinence Commitment Effect, but your AV wants its oxygen and is trying to get you to feel that YOU miss the pleasure such that it would be better to not even remember that pleasure at all.

You are recognizing your AV as an anticipation of when will this unfulfilled desire end. And you recognize that as inconsequential.

I recognize my AV wanting to procure and use hydrocodone illegally. This is a sign of health, not disease. My appetites for pleasure/survival are functioning OK, and of course, I will not act upon that particular one. Recalling that pleasure is just as harmless as not remembering the sensations of booze or pot, or even caffeine or nicotine, which the case with me.
Thank you for these thoughts. That was an interesting experiment I just had to see if I could "recall the pleasure" of being intoxicated. I'm trying to figure out why I found it so pleasurable. Maybe it was just the false promise I was buying into.
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Old 04-03-2018, 09:03 AM
  # 375 (permalink)  
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That's an impressive Sober Streak you've run up, Sohard, and I congratulate you! Now, you know what that sober streak feels like. Me, I found that streak alone to be an important incentive to not reset sober time to zero during any utterly-avoidable Relapse. WHICH, personally, I don't think is 'a part of Recovery'. I also think that insufferable, pedantic talk of Alcohol Moderation is a cruel and stupid joke. The best way to mature past being an Addict once confidently sober? Don't think you're one anymore. I am Recovered because my Big Plan forever locked away any chance of drinking again. Because only an Addict would cave - and partake again - I am no longer one. This Mindset - one I achieved several Years ago - is comprehensively liberating.

If you find yourself wavering, read a dozen Posts here in 'Newcomers', or in the 'Friends & Family' Sections. Powerful stuff that focuses a Person...

IME, The Beast never fully goes away. I grew to not care if it goes away. I inadvertently empower it if I take it seriously. I've read elsewhere here on SR over the Years about how one must not yet be sober if one still has 'those' thoughts. Hey, they're ingrained habitual thoughts. In a like manner, I still recall a childhood pet. My High School GF. Rather fondly, actually. Those legacy thoughts don't direct my behavior here-and-now, so why should old drinking thoughts uniquely be given the power to do so? The 'power' of AV thoughts reduce to a laughable irrelevancy over time as The New Normal of dealing with Life while sober becomes entrenched. By habit...
.
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Old 04-04-2018, 03:44 PM
  # 376 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by MesaMan View Post
.

IME, The Beast never fully goes away. I grew to not care if it goes away.
.
I guess I do sorta care and want it to go away. It bothers me. Before I quit drinking, I would have said there were many areas of my life which could be improved, all areas of concern caused by drinking. Now that I actually have quit drinking, the only area of my life I wish was different is that I wish I could drink. What?! That doesn’t make sense! I quit drinking, life improved, and I still want to be able to drink. But it’s true - I want to be able to drink every once in a while. Of course, if I could do that, I wouldn’t be an alcoholic, and if I wasn’t an alcoholic, I wouldn’t really care if I couldn’t drink every once in a while because I wouldn’t need to satiate the craving and scratch the itch that an alcoholic does through drinking.

Basically, I want to stop missing drinking, plain and simple. I know it’s my beast, I won’t give it power, but I want it to shut up.
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Old 04-04-2018, 05:36 PM
  # 377 (permalink)  
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Beside the sentence you quoted, lemme do what might be a first for me here on SR, and answer you by quoting myself:

'The 'power' of AV thoughts reduce to a laughable irrelevancy over time as The New Normal of dealing with Life while sober becomes entrenched.' <- For me, that's the same as my AV going away. I laugh, and ignore it.

Sohard, as all us Addicts have to do, you're having to retrain Behavioral 'essentials' - as they seem right now - and learn new essentials. Virtually all of us here have had to do that. Yah, I've done more 'fun' things in my Life than that, but it's simply repeatable motions you have to get through until it's about like riding a Bike. Doing Sober Things instead of Drinking Things to show your Beast how it's gonna work from this sober point on.

6 Months in was much easier than at ~3 Months in, as many of us can attest. That increased ease keeps on a comin' as Sober Living becomes natural.

May I suggest lots of reading. Both in how senior Members here now look back on AV antics for the BS they are, and to gain strategy tips. Also, over in 'Newcomers' to absorb how common these early challenges are.

I'm 'All In'. *I* have no use for Moderation, and all the verbose over-thinking that goes with it. I've rebuilt my Life from the Ground up to not need to get high on anything. At that point, getting high seems like a stupid distraction that I have absolutely *no* interest in. I don't want to keep tossing scraps out to energize my Beast, and keep it half-alive via random 'light' Drinking. To me, that's like pulling off a Scab repeatedly. The Injury will never fully heal if I keep doing that.

I call my present state 'Effortless Sobriety'. Cuz it is. I overcame Sobriety challenges with the same intensity of an Olympic Athlete training. It was either that, or my 1.75 Liter 'Handle' of Vodka every 2 Days in 24/7 Drinking was going to kill me. There is a clarity and intensity that emerges when you face certain death.
.
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Old 04-05-2018, 07:42 AM
  # 378 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Sohard View Post
I guess I do sorta care and want it to go away. It bothers me. Before I quit drinking, I would have said there were many areas of my life which could be improved, all areas of concern caused by drinking. Now that I actually have quit drinking, the only area of my life I wish was different is that I wish I could drink. What?! That doesn’t make sense! I quit drinking, life improved, and I still want to be able to drink. But it’s true - I want to be able to drink every once in a while. Of course, if I could do that, I wouldn’t be an alcoholic, and if I wasn’t an alcoholic, I wouldn’t really care if I couldn’t drink every once in a while because I wouldn’t need to satiate the craving and scratch the itch that an alcoholic does through drinking.

Basically, I want to stop missing drinking, plain and simple. I know it’s my beast, I won’t give it power, but I want it to shut up.
I know what you mean SoHard. I still get occasional twinges of nostalgia, that's OK, they are just thoughts and as long as they remain unacted upon they can do no harm. I think it's all about acceptance. I've accepted that I will never drink again. I don't tell myself that I "can't" because of course I can, I'm a grown woman and can do what I please. However I have chosen to never drink again, even if occasionally, I still have thoughts to the contrary.

It gets easier, over time those thoughts start to seem less and less important. At 3-4 months, thoughts of how I wasn't drinking were still at the front of my mind a lot, and I didn't feel like I fit into my old life anymore, but I hadn't created a life without drinking in it yet.
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Old 04-05-2018, 08:36 AM
  # 379 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Sohard View Post
I guess I do sorta care and want it to go away. It bothers me. Before I quit drinking, I would have said there were many areas of my life which could be improved, all areas of concern caused by drinking. Now that I actually have quit drinking, the only area of my life I wish was different is that I wish I could drink. What?! That doesn’t make sense! I quit drinking, life improved, and I still want to be able to drink. But it’s true - I want to be able to drink every once in a while. Of course, if I could do that, I wouldn’t be an alcoholic, and if I wasn’t an alcoholic, I wouldn’t really care if I couldn’t drink every once in a while because I wouldn’t need to satiate the craving and scratch the itch that an alcoholic does through drinking.

Basically, I want to stop missing drinking, plain and simple. I know it’s my beast, I won’t give it power, but I want it to shut up.
Sohard,
This is ALL Addictive Voice. You are not using AVRT here. You are having what is called a “Restlessness” “Beast Attack”. (p. 155 of RR: TNC)

Simply put, because you are not using AVRT, “the Beast may be affirming and gleeful” that YOU are missing “the opportunity to drink.”

By not using AVRT, IT has surrounded your Big Plan and is desperately trying to chip away and convince you that you know you lied to yourself when you made it (which is actually not possible (I still don’t know how to lie to myself)).

Your AV will also tell you that using the pronoun switching filter of AVRT is a silly thing to do. It’s all really just you, and, yes, YOU really want to drink.

You do know, right now, whether you really did make that “unbreakable promise” the Big Plan. If you really didn’t do it yet, you still can. Making the Big Plan really is a deeply personal choice to take future choosing COMPLETELY off the table.

Your Beast also wants you to BE a forever alcoholic instead of a common teetotaler.
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Old 04-05-2018, 10:14 AM
  # 380 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by MesaMan View Post
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Sohard, as all us Addicts have to do, you're having to retrain Behavioral 'essentials' - as they seem right now - and learn new essentials. Virtually all of us here have had to do that. Yah, I've done more 'fun' things in my Life than that, but it's simply repeatable motions you have to get through until it's about like riding a Bike.

6 Months in was much easier than at ~3 Months in, as many of us can attest. That increased ease keeps on a comin' as Sober Living becomes natural.

I call my present state 'Effortless Sobriety'. Cuz it is. I overcame Sobriety challenges with the same intensity of an Olympic Athlete training.
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These are important things for me to remember. It particularly helps to know that you also felt you were using the "intensity of an olympic athlete" to overcome sobriety challenges. It's been hard to flip the switch in my mind, if you will, to "effortless sobriety", but I'm trying. Month 4 is much easier that day 4, so I'm hopeful it will keep getting easier with time and that new healthy behavioral essentials will fully take over for my previous drinking behaviors. Thank you so much for your thoughts!
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