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Old 07-09-2018, 11:49 AM   #21 (permalink)
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What do you mean by ' brake out.. and get the upper hand'?

The Beast will make you go buy coke, or have it delivered?
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Old 07-09-2018, 01:33 PM   #22 (permalink)
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What do you mean by ' brake out.. and get the upper hand'?

The Beast will make you go buy coke, or have it delivered?
Yeah, well it did make me do that a thousand times before! Never delivery though my dealer didn't come out that far.

As I said, probably irrational but it's a kind of fear of provoking the beast by taunting it. Its early days for me, I'll work up to it.
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Old 07-09-2018, 02:29 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Through the lens of AVRT , the Beast can't make you do anything. The thousands of times before you agreed with the AV and its ideas of acting to indulge the desire(the Beast).

Deciding to never use again, making a BP, and using the technique of addictive voice recognition, you are actively scanning your thoughts and filtering out, separating from any ideas of acting on the desire.

Don't do anything that makes you uncomfortable, but using the shifting exercises lets you feel the wriggling and reinforce the idea that you are in control and no amount of wriggle can 'make' you give it up .

In another thread a few weeks ago the idea was floated that several of us would make a plan to drink at a later date, a plan made to prove the failure thereof.

I always lamented never have tried a certain bourbon, decided to google the availability of the vintage on a recent vacay. Forgot to look for the places it was available while in NOLA( I get to say that now that I've been, lol) . Funnier part is the way google works, now almost all the banner ads I see are for Pappy Van Winkle's , even funnier part almost no Beast activity from that exercise, no panting regretful ruing about deprivation. Which in turn makes me think perhaps just a sampling wouldn't be that bad, oh there it is
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Old 07-09-2018, 11:15 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Through the lens of AVRT , the Beast can't make you do anything. The thousands of times before you agreed with the AV and its ideas of acting to indulge the desire(the Beast).

Deciding to never use again, making a BP, and using the technique of addictive voice recognition, you are actively scanning your thoughts and filtering out, separating from any ideas of acting on the desire.

Don't do anything that makes you uncomfortable, but using the shifting exercises lets you feel the wriggling and reinforce the idea that you are in control and no amount of wriggle can 'make' you give it up .

In another thread a few weeks ago the idea was floated that several of us would make a plan to drink at a later date, a plan made to prove the failure thereof.

I always lamented never have tried a certain bourbon, decided to google the availability of the vintage on a recent vacay. Forgot to look for the places it was available while in NOLA( I get to say that now that I've been, lol) . Funnier part is the way google works, now almost all the banner ads I see are for Pappy Van Winkle's , even funnier part almost no Beast activity from that exercise, no panting regretful ruing about deprivation. Which in turn makes me think perhaps just a sampling wouldn't be that bad, oh there it is
Yeah that's a catch 22 if ever I heard one, the less Beast activity the more your Beast capitalises on that to say 'Hey this is not as hard as you thought, maybe you're not that bad after all, why not have have a drink/fix'
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Old 10-26-2018, 11:42 AM   #25 (permalink)
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Just checking in to let y'all know I'm still clean! Four months today. Barely having any cravings, no connections to any sources and not missing it!
Sober life is definitely better than cokehead life... I have no intentions to do blow ever again. I got that evil ****** to release its grip on me and life is a better place as a result!
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Old 10-26-2018, 05:46 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Congrats mirrorball

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Old 10-31-2018, 11:02 PM   #27 (permalink)
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Awesome stuff, mirrorball. Well done.
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AVRT has shown me how to never drink again and to never change my mind.
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Old 11-01-2018, 06:16 AM   #28 (permalink)
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Old 11-21-2018, 04:27 AM   #29 (permalink)
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This is a really great thread - inspiring stuff. There is something so positive about the language used here that appeals to me. I feel I was really getting bogged down in the self flagellation of another programme lately so I have decided to open my mind and try to employ another plan of attack. I now realise that I was kinda making my sobriety conditional on me feeling happy with every meeting I had gone to or feeling comfortable with every aspect of the doctrine of that programme

I bought the book off Amazon and have been busy reading all of these threads on AVRT and I am impressed by the consistently positive tone - like quitting alcohol or drugs is not something to feel downbeat about, nor is it something I need to spend the rest of my life trying to execute.

Can I ask one question about all of this: one aspect of recovery that has left me feeling kinda sad is the idea of avoiding situations, people etc that could set me off on the wrong path. Would you guys say it's still prudent to steer clear for the first 3-6 months or would you say that's the AV talking? And going for those client lunches or dinner meet ups etc is a way of sticking it in its face and reinforcing the message that he won't win?

Finally, there is obviously no "post recovery care" aspect to this programme. What do you guys use to free up your minds and start living a life free of hangups about what happened in the past? Therapy? I sometimes wonder if the act of unclouding your brain and effectively just growing up by default allows you to slowly go about this aspect naturally? You feel better, you look better, you act more reasonably and self esteem grows just automatically? I was starting to get sick of constantly thinking about how I could improve me!!
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Old 11-21-2018, 09:15 AM   #30 (permalink)
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Any(and every)thing that 'says' you can't /won't quit is AV.

Consider everything you've done prior to making a Big Plan as 'recovery', two milli-seconds after making a Big Plan 'recovery' is over. Being recovered is an event not a continuum ( only AV says otherwise).

Rootin for ya
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Old 11-21-2018, 09:44 AM   #31 (permalink)
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Sorry I could have added ,Yes, you are doing it 'right'

If you have made your Big Plan , you're golden , anything that says otherwise is AV and dismiss-able and ignorable, Congratulations!

Have you read through the 'long' discussions of AVRT in the threads? , great ways to see nuances and schemes of the AV in play and better hone one's own detection skills
Everything said here and dwtbd post above this one
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Old 11-21-2018, 09:51 AM   #32 (permalink)
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This is a really great thread - inspiring stuff. There is something so positive about the language used here that appeals to me. I feel I was really getting bogged down in the self flagellation of another programme lately so I have decided to open my mind and try to employ another plan of attack. I now realise that I was kinda making my sobriety conditional on me feeling happy with every meeting I had gone to or feeling comfortable with every aspect of the doctrine of that programme

I bought the book off Amazon and have been busy reading all of these threads on AVRT and I am impressed by the consistently positive tone - like quitting alcohol or drugs is not something to feel downbeat about, nor is it something I need to spend the rest of my life trying to execute.

Can I ask one question about all of this: one aspect of recovery that has left me feeling kinda sad is the idea of avoiding situations, people etc that could set me off on the wrong path. Would you guys say it's still prudent to steer clear for the first 3-6 months or would you say that's the AV talking? And going for those client lunches or dinner meet ups etc is a way of sticking it in its face and reinforcing the message that he won't win?

Finally, there is obviously no "post recovery care" aspect to this programme. What do you guys use to free up your minds and start living a life free of hangups about what happened in the past? Therapy? I sometimes wonder if the act of unclouding your brain and effectively just growing up by default allows you to slowly go about this aspect naturally? You feel better, you look better, you act more reasonably and self esteem grows just automatically? I was starting to get sick of constantly thinking about how I could improve me!!
Briansy,

Wonderful post, especially your last paragraph is ringing true for me in my almost 6 months down.

Had terrible AV attack over the weekend (see my post class of May 2018 recent post), but dismissed it. Each time dismissed, IT grows weaker and less frequent.

WE HAVE CONTROL, now that we took that opportunity to take action, we must RUN with the ball. Look back only to learn, not to yearn with nostalgia. Nostalgia about what? Shame? Guilt? Rotating stores to by booze? Lying to self and family?

Sorry AV, ain't no happy in the drinker I'd become and would always be until I die an early and horrific death if I listen to you. No thanks!!
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Old 11-21-2018, 10:27 AM   #33 (permalink)
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Just checking in to let y'all know I'm still clean! Four months today. Barely having any cravings, no connections to any sources and not missing it!
Sober life is definitely better than cokehead life... I have no intentions to do blow ever again. I got that evil ****** to release its grip on me and life is a better place as a result!
Was reading through this thread and was wondering....glad I found this near the end!

At just about 18 months sober. Just got back from a trip to Australia. Trigger at the airport when I passed a bar...habit for years was "I'm starting my vacation," have 2-3 drinks, get on the plane, have 2-3 more, take some benzos to knock me out because "How else do you get through a 14 hour flight," arrive disoriented and feeling like crap.

There wasn't the slightest chance I was actually going to indulge that. I thought "Oh, a craving, glad I don't do that anymore" and found that the entire process, like pretty much everything, was WAY better sober. Had a row to myself, slept 7 hours, breezed through customs, and spent the entire day happy and active and didn't even go to sleep until around 11pm.

The difference between AVRT orthodoxy and my journey is that I started by getting Step 1 in rehab, and in three weeks went from "I'll stop while I'm in here" to "I'll stop for 90 days" to "I'll stop for a year" to "Rehab SUCKS. Why would I EVER want to do this again? I'm just not going to drink or use anymore. I am a non-drinker/non-user now." Continued with outpatient rehab and individual psychotherapy, the latter of which is useful in managing my life. People ask if my sobriety is "rock solid" and I don't even think in those terms, as I'm not working on being sober. Meetings were just keeping me in the world of addiction, I dropped them as soon as I started inpatient therapy and never went back. I didn't make a "big plan," but one kinda evolved.

No matter you're journey, sounds like you're there as well. CONGRATULATIONS. Cravings are just habits, they have no control over you when you've decided that's it's all over, baby blue.
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Old 11-21-2018, 11:44 AM   #34 (permalink)
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hmm , identify as a non-drinker/user, recognize and separate from desire ( while living comfortably 'ta boot) , just watch out you don't become dogmatic
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Old 11-23-2018, 07:39 AM   #35 (permalink)
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This Paragraph above from Briansy caught my Eye as well:

'Finally, there is obviously no "post recovery care" aspect to this programme. What do you guys use to free up your minds and start living a life free of hangups about what happened in the past? Therapy? I sometimes wonder if the act of unclouding your brain and effectively just growing up by default allows you to slowly go about this aspect naturally? You feel better, you look better, you act more reasonably and self esteem grows just automatically? I was starting to get sick of constantly thinking about how I could improve me!!'

I cycled through some of this same pondering, and popped out the other side of that Process to finally give it all a rest. That is, I quit 'struggling' against several things; one of which was the premise that I had to constantly work at improving myself. As John Lennon said: 'Life is what happens while you're making other Plans'. This also seems true in the matter of improving yourself. It can just happen...

I swung 'round to be satisfied with myself. Achieve 'less', but be content with, and focus on, that which I can/do achieve. I sort of dig down into the Now, and really enjoy anything from tying my Boot Laces securely to readying our Travel Trailer for a Trip. Before I know it, I look up and am still Sober. Serene. Satisfied with some job well done because I wasn't always letting my Mind buzz with distractions. When in doubt, focus.

It's a sort of 'Buddhist Lite' way of going about things, but it got me off the Treadmill of beating myself over not improving 'enough'. For me, another bonus of AVRT was to internalize Metrics of what 'enough accomplished', or what 'happy' is. The Discipline of AVRT, as I practice it, doesn't rely on Externals, or conformance to Mystic Entities. The Gent in the Bathroom Mirror is the final Arbiter of what Sober Life is, and that un-complicates things considerably.

Consequently, Sober Life now is good!
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Old 11-24-2018, 01:30 AM   #36 (permalink)
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This is so helpful, Mesa, thank you. I honestly found all of the "me" stuff counter productive. Putting additional pressure on myself at a time when these changes are already putting mountains of pressure on.

Would someone be able to respond specifically to how they felt in the weeks and 3-6 months after getting sober using AVRT. Going for dinners, weddings etc? Ie I am now on day 6 and have a dinner next Thursday with some Uni friends - but they are also old friends who saw me not drinking last time we met up. So that will be tough but fine. Then I have a lunch on Friday with a lawyer I placed into a job (I do recruitment) who initially suggested a boozey lunch and I told him I had knocked it on the head but I had no problem with him drinking. Finally, I have two weddings in Feb and March. Both involve two nights away with ex work colleagues - focus of those weekends will be drinking. My question is: should I go to all of them with my chin up? Ie the idea of a danger zone existing is just the Beast? Or should I adopt common sense and not provoke him? Cos sooner or later I'm gonna have to start living my life - admittedly my sober life will be less focused around occasions to drink and more on stuff I like doing like outdoors stuff, golf etc - but there are a lot of friends that I'll just meet for dinner where they will view it as a drinking session.

Thoughts??
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Old 11-24-2018, 08:14 AM   #37 (permalink)
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I generally avoided social events that focused around drinking in the early days. In fact, I still do. When I have to go I always make sure I have my own way home and I leave whenever I want. By definition it's AV to have to to do anything to protect your sobriety, since it's next to impossible to unknowingly drink it or have drinking happen to you. Really you should be safe anywhere. But I found it easier on myself to just avoid that whole scene. I figured, why put myself through it? I was hyper-aware of any amount of alcohol around me. It wasn't that I was going to drink it but I didn't want to torture myself - or my Beast - if I'm going to be correct. Either way, I went easy on myself. Stopped playing with fire.
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Old 11-25-2018, 07:20 AM   #38 (permalink)
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Briansy
" Ie the idea of a danger zone existing is just the Beast?" This is, through the lens of AVRT ,AV ( any thought , feeling, image of future drinking or doubt in your ability to remain abstinent) , it is the bark of the Beast , like the bark of a dog it is not the dog itself. The Beast itself is the desire for alcohol , intoxication and once born never dies. Akin to knowing the taste of chocolate after having tried it even only once. The desire itself( qua desire) can not compel indulgence, but it can through, the lens of AVRT, hijack those 'parts' of yourself that control action by 'barking' AV , and masquerading those impulses as coming from your 'whole' self. Ie " I feel the desire therefore I must then want to drink more".


Separation qua concept is very important in understanding the 'mechanics' of AVRT. Feeling the desire and 'hearing' the AV are not in and of themselves evidence of not having quit , or of not being 'fully' quit. The decision to never drink again is having 'fully' quit, yeah ?

The decision doesn't/can't make the desire disappear, but a commitment made to yourself to never again act on the desire can/does make the drinking disappear.

Mesaman's analogy about buddism-lite is apropos and a way in which I relate the mechanics of AVRT.

Sometimes what can get over looked is the idea that AV isn't necessarily only 'hearing' the AV say "drink, now, cmon let's have some booze, you deserve a drink " ect, the immediate impulse to imbibe. Because AV also generates immediate emotional states eg 'missing ' 'resentment at watching Beasts indulge' ' barred from the social lubricant' ect. And just as 'easy' as it is to recognize and separate from the immediate impulse to say f-it and pour a drink, so too can be the emotional responses and feelings generated by the Beast to not getting Its booze.

The Beast will, via AV, try and fool you into thinking the 'pain' of deprivation is being generated by You , when in fact It is projecting those feelings onto You, and as any 'form' of AV is permissibly ignore-able.

Anytime post BP, you see other people's beasts successfully indulging Your beast is going to 'punish' you , make you feel bad and wistful for Its precious stuff and try and convince You, through emotional manipulation, to get it Its precious stuff. When you 'hear/feel' it, recognize it as coming from It.

If you have freed yourself from the bondage of addiction and vow /desire to never again place yourself in its grasp, feelings of 'missing' the poison can't actually be 'coming from' You , yeah?

The idea that experiencing those emotions is dangerous , is 100% AV. The impression that sensing the beast's frustration at not being able to indulge itself as a danger or risk to your ability to remain abstinent is by definition AV, yeah ?

Weddings, dinners, lunches ect ect may /will always be occasions when you feel the Beast's frustrations. Disowning that frustration, recognizing and separating from it, assigning it to the Beast frees You from feeling them as self generated and instead see them as having been projected on you from It.

The first few times you experience the beast's soulful mourning of the loss of Its ability to get you to indulge It are arguably uncomfortable. But become, sooner than you would think, trivial.

The Beast will never be comfortable with Its predicament, but you need not and will soon not care

Believe it or not, teasing It is a reward in itself , you can actually sense Its sadness at seeing all the precious booze and Its frustration at not getting you to give it some, and you can and will just as easily ignore it. You can go into a situation where you know for certain the Beast will be actively remorseful and decide to preemptively ignore it.

Or you can decide to not put yourself in a beast rich environment, the choice is always yours, you reclaimed that choice , that choice is no longer Its, ever.

You got this , rootin for ya
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Old 11-25-2018, 10:34 AM   #39 (permalink)
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Briansy ~

Selfishness is your friend. Or, *Selfishness* as some on the outside looking in on your Sobriety would interpret it.

My experience was that I had keep peeling back the layers, and reassess situations from a totally different perspective. I'm possibly 2x your age, but the Social challenges - which finally become pretty effortless - remain. We had a Gal Pal's Daughter invite us out to their Beach-side Wedding. Wealthy In-Laws from Carmel California. Tattooed, 30-something 'Kids' getting really high [the marrying Couple, and their Circle-of-Friends]. I tried to work my attendance via every coping mechanism I could; including my Wife going out alone. Ultimately, we opted to not attend. As my fav Bumper Sticker from Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream goes:

'If It Not's Fun, Why Do It?'

^^^ Gospel, that one...

As you read on SR, having an Exit Strategy after a [Fizzy Water] Toast at a Wedding can be critical, and Sobriety-saving. Me, I worked up my BS lines to deliver in any number of situations so that they would roll off my Tongue. For the Lunch situation, fake some 'new Drug' that you're taking for a few Months that your Doc suggests you not mix with Booze. Fake a set of Yearly Medical Tests you're cleaning out your System for. *Whatever*.

This Sobriety thing has these Tentacles that reach out many directions. That is, one has to become adept at coping effortlessly in a Drinking World. Or, so it seems; even though Drinking is not so widespread as we sometimes believe. It's also true that lots of Folks could not care less if we drink. That awkward, introspective POV is just us thinking we're oddities for not Drinking.

All this jockeying and coping and white-lies-telling adaptation is simply part of the Game, as I finally approached it. So, I decided to master it; not be bummed or daunted by it. Finally, it becomes irrelevant. As BJ1 notes, if a situation is gonna be [too much] work, I can't be bothered anymore. See the Ben & Jerry's Slogan above. I'm not on this Earth to be happy and Sober for others. Only for me. Hence, the concept of a 'healthy' Selfishness. I don't sweat squat anymore. The positive flip side? I greatly enjoy the many other Events I do take part in.

You're doing well, so keep up that expertise and confidence as you plow through the next steps of Sobriety. 'Tis absolutely worth it!
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Old 11-27-2018, 10:16 AM   #40 (permalink)
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My experience was that dealing with cravings evolved over sobriety time.

I was severely sick when I entered rehab and did a medical detox. Rehab was very 12 step focused, but my counselor didn't feel like 12 Step was the only way and supported my lack of enthusiasm. However, beating pretty severe physical addiction and withdrawal took being in a place where I had no access to alcohol or drugs for five weeks. I was told by my doctors that not detoxing was extremely dangerous, and I absolutely believed that.

So five weeks in...there was an 8 week wait for outpatient rehab, which was cognitive based and dovetailed very nicely with AVRT principles. It's short term and there's an end date, it mostly gives tools to deal with cravings and underlying mental illness, in my case bipolar disorder. During that 8 weeks I didn't put myself in social situations with alcohol and went to 12 Step meetings sporadically. The latter gave me something to do, but also cemented my realization that 12 Step wasn't for me.

I had a breakthrough during my inpatient therapy where I successfully resisted a very strong craving, and realized that I had people to call to help me get through them. However, I didn't actually call anyone. It was at that point that I realized that both the decision to completely take alcohol off the table AND how damned good I felt not drinking was enough.

This was about 4 months into sobriety. After that I didn't much worry about social situations with alcohol, because I simply didn't drink anymore. I also don't resent people who can have a drink or two and then stop, people who never feel that they NEED to drink or use. I'm just not one of them.

So yes, it did change. I haven't seriously fought with a craving or considered drinking since that episode, and won't.
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