At some point during the reboot process, single brothers in the Porn Reboot program are going to begin dating.
Some methods for overcoming porn addiction have you holding your seed and abstaining from intimacy for long periods. I disagree with that, though. I believe that having an outlet for your romantic and intimate needs is a very normal, healthy progression.
It’s not good for you to hold yourself back from intimacy or connection with the women around you. That’s a one-way ticket to sexual repression which is another serious problem. Learning to date in a healthy way during your reboot is a vital part of the process. You need to begin working on building relationships with women in a positive way.
Now if you’re a single man who’s been focused strictly on his reboot for months, getting into the dating game probably makes you feel a bit nervous. Dating in today’s world does come with its challenges and you might find yourself in a tough situation. If you’re early in your reboot, you might have no idea how to have a normal conversation with the opposite sex.
Don’t worry, no matter how extreme your out-of-control behavior is, you’re never too far gone. You can rebuild an amazing and active sex and dating life regardless of how far your behavior progressed. It will take some work but that’s what the Porn Addiction Counseling – Reboot system is here to do. So, how can you get back to dating during your reboot?
1. Figure out whether you’re ready to date
In my experience, I recommend that a man has his behavior under control for at least 6 to 12 months before beginning to date. During that time you should be actively working on bettering yourself, not just using willpower to keep your behavior at bay.
You should have different areas of your reboot capital built up, should be aware of your triggers, and should have strong boundaries in place. These are things that take a few months to set up, not a few weeks. If these things aren’t in place, you aren’t ready to date.
2. Put together a dating plan
Once you decide that you’re ready to date, you should approach dating like you do other major life changes during your reboot: with a plan. Of course, different men’s plans will vary according to their lifestyle and what they want. But having a plan in place for your particular situation, lifestyle, and wants will help you out.
Where will you find your potential dates? How often should you see them before having sex? What will you do to reflect on your dates and determine whether this person is someone you actually want to continue seeing? And who will be your accountability partner or partners during the dating process?
3. Date without expectations
Building up expectations for your dates puts you on the fast track to disappointment and letdown. That’s not to say every date you go on will be miserable, but it’s also a reminder that not every date will be something you’re interested in. Keeping a hold of your emotional balance is critical and dating without expectations is an important way to do that.
Take time to get to know the women you’re dating. Having sex with women you aren’t in a committed relationship with will always put your reboot at risk. Slow things down and take the weeks or months needed to determine whether this woman is someone you’re actually interested in.
4. The dating process is not about sex, nor strictly about finding a partner
I know this might sound counterintuitive but trust me on this one. Early in your reboot, the main point of dating is to go out and literally practice meeting people. If you’ve struggled with porn addiction and compulsive sexual behavior for years, you’re going to need that practice.
Go out and have a good time with some different women. Observe how you react emotionally during the process. Be honest with yourself when reflecting on the experience after you get home. You might even find out that you’re not quite ready for dating yet. You’re simply on a fact-finding mission at this point.
5. Have some standards
In the past, you probably would have slept with anyone who gave you the time of day. You weren’t very concerned about the types of women you were with, you only cared about whether you could score at the end of the night. Now that you’re rebooting, though, it’s a different story.
Today you need to have standards, brother. Once you drop your focus on sex, you begin to notice how uninteresting many of the women you saw before were. You’re much less interested in interacting with toxic women. You can begin to determine how you’d like to be treated and find a woman who meets those needs.
Get Some Support Along the Way
One of the most important things to keep in mind is you shouldn’t head into dating alone. Trying to manage your dating life during your reboot without any support is a disaster waiting to happen. Get yourself in the middle of a group of men, like we have in the Porn Reboot Facebook group, who know exactly what you’re going through.
The more you surround yourself with support, the better your experience will be. You’ll have men who you can talk to when you’re having a difficult time with dating or you feel like you’re at risk of slipping. Dating during your reboot doesn’t have to be an impossible feat, brother. It’s a natural part of life and you can do it with the right support and approach!