"Sow a thought and you reap an action; sow an act and you reap a habit; sow a habit and you reap a character; sow a character and you reap a destiny." -- Ralph Waldo Emerson.
So, when does one's action (or inaction) become a habit that can affect one's character and maybe one's destiny? Is it a month? two months? three months? A year? I remember hearing something about being committed to something for three months and getting through that period will establish the "habit".
Well, it's been three months now since I went cold turkey on my journey into the world of Internet eye-candy (note: if you're not up to speed - I'm talking the PG-13 hot guys on non-adult sites). Three months without a hiccup. Three months without those guys staring back at me. Three months of temptation, but not succumbing to those temptations. This is a goal that I have set and I still feel good about this goal. I set it in April thinking that I'd try the cyber-celibacy for three months.
And I made it!
So now what?
So is it a habit? Am I there? Did I make it? If I made it this long, can I keep it going?
And how has this changed me? Some changes I've noticed:
1. I feel more confident in myself, more in control.
2. I don't need the "hot guy fix" (hgf) to make it through the day. I can do it without the morning and afternoon HGF.
3. I have much more time to be more productive in my day. I'm actually getting more work done in a quicker amount of time. I haven't worked late into the evening for some time now.
4. I'm feeling less guilt, adjusting my "habits" to better match my goals for my life as a whole. Thus, I'm more at peace (as peaceful as an angsty guy can be).
5. I'm becoming more comfortable in liking the beauty of real guys instead of the super-beautiful cyber-images. I will always like the view!
6. I'm spending more time with the family instead of lurking in the basement (not sure if it's quality time, but at least it's "more" time).
All that said, I know the HGF is still out there to be had. It's ready within a click to come back into my life. And I still want it. The desire is still there to "enjoy the view" and "partake" more freely. I really want it! After all, I'm still a frustrated gay active-and-believing Mormon guy in a MOM with all the associated complications. I would be lying if I said the desire wasn't still there. Yes, it's there, and most likely always will be.
But just as a long time ago I committed to be faithful to my wife and not have a sexual relationship with another man, I've now chosen to be HGF-clean. And if I've made it three months, why not another three, and yet another three?
The other "habit" I've made now 10 months is no longer having meetings with fellow MOHOs behind my wife's back (more on that in the next post).
Is this crazy? Or should I just cave to the cravings and justify it by saying that it's no big deal, that I'm a gay guy with needs, and this is a pretty innocent, adolescent, non-damaging way to deal with those needs?
It's probably crazy... but hey, I'm okay with that. I'm doing good. I'm happy. I'm not shaking with sweaty hands and suffering from headaches and anxiety attacks. And I'm not going to beat myself up if I fall off the HGF wagon.
It's all cool.
“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” -- Aristotle
So then, why do I feel so delusional?