I recently made a video talking about why edging is worse for your brain than masturbating. It led to a lot of dialogue in the Porn Reboot groups as brothers shared their experiences on how to stop porn addiction. Some understood my point while others seemed to miss it. One brother asked:
“If I find myself edging, would it be beneficial to add a time limit so I can prevent the brain damage it causes? At what point can I reverse course or am I already past the point of no return? Is it a good thing if my slip is of a lesser duration? Thanks for your thoughts.”
Unfortunately, this brother didn’t seem to understand what I was getting at with that video. I don’t believe that slips and edging are “bad things”. I’ve talked about this many times before. Viewing them as “bad” only attaches emotion to an event. They are neither good nor bad. Instead, I believe you should simply view these experiences as data.
When you don’t treat slips or edging as data you begin treating them as an obstacle instead. But what happens when you come up against an obstacle? You must stop it. And how do you stop internal obstacles? You deploy willpower.
However, willpower does not work when it comes to the reboot process. Trying to exert willpower against your out-of-control behavior only works against your biology. But if you continue labeling things as “bad”, you’ll continue struggling with a willpower-based approach to rebooting.
Here’s the thing, brother. If you find yourself edging as a way to avoid actually masturbating, there’s something else going on. There’s no point in just edging without finishing. If you’re already edging then you should just complete the job. There is no “reversing course”. The slip happens once you start the process.
Porn addiction, sex, and masturbation addiction is a behavioral addiction. You’re more addicted to the process of the experience than the orgasm itself. When you’re edging you’re still participating in part of the process. Looking for any other way around it is just looking for a way to justify your slip.
Instead of making excuses for your behavior, look at what caused it instead. Why did you get to a place where you felt the need to edge? Which area of your reboot capital is lacking? Are you bored? Are you getting enough sleep? Are you carrying out your morning reboot routine? Where are you going astray?
Once you understand where things are wrong, take action to fix them. Employ some of your tools and skills to strengthen the area that you’re struggling with. You’ll never stop edging if you don’t have the discipline and take the time to develop an awareness of your patterns and get to the bottom of the behavior.
Hold yourself accountable to your accountability partner or the group and get back on track. You don’t need to attach emotional words to objective experiences. The longer you continue that, the longer it will take to overcome your behavior.
If you’re still having trouble eliminating your behavior and don’t have an accountability partner yet, join us in the free Porn Reboot Facebook group. Hundreds of men in the group understand the struggle and have experiences to learn from. You don’t need to deal with your compulsive behavior alone – there’s an entire brotherhood here to help.