Christmas Day, 2021. Sathiya’s first Christmas in Jamaica. It was +30 degrees. The sun was shining. Birds were singing. I was wearing my new shirt that my in-laws bought me (lovely choice if I do say so myself). And I was COMPLETELY MISERABLE.
You may not be able to tell, but the smile in that picture was pretty much forced. I was a grumpy Gus Christmas day and it was for one simple reason.
I was sick. There was a bug going around and I happened to get it just before Christmas Day. Nothing in me wanted to show up for Christmas dinner, but I didn’t move all the way to Jamaica for the winter only to spend Christmas Day in bed!
So I got dressed, put on my best smile, and had a fantastic evening. The food was delicious and the company was even better. By the end of the evening, I was already starting to feel better. A couple days later I was back to normal.
The experience reminded me of an adage I picked up a few years ago from someone I deeply admire and...
So you've probably seen recovery systems that count streaks – 3 days free, 4 weeks free, 6 months free, etc. And you've probably seen other camps that are against streak counting because it's a superficial metric (I tend to be more in this camp). That's all well and good, but it begs the question – if you don't have external metrics, how do you measure success? Well, we've actually come up with a metric at DeepClean that answers this question head on.
The metric is called the trendline. If you go back to grade 8 math, you learned how to create a graph. You learned that there is an independent variable on the x-axis and a dependent variable on the y-axis and you learned how to plot points based on their coordinates (sorry if all the math language just brought back grade school trauma).
As an example, let's say you were trying to figure out if playing more video games led to better grades (to use a completely hypothetical example that definitely in no way reflects my...
Beauty is best found in simplicity.
My wife and I got away with family and friends to a beautiful resort in Negril, Jamaica for Christmas. We were privy to sunsets like these pretty much every single day. A very different experience for a born-and-raised Canadian like myself!
This photo was taken without a filter or any editing, except one small tweak. Light exposure. As I reduced the light exposure, the elements of the sunset became more pronounced.
I don’t know about you, but I have this way of complicating things unnecessarily. I add spices to food that shouldn’t be added. I create new projects that don’t need to be created. I design spreadsheets and checklists to keep track of the simplest things. The list goes on.
I am regularly reminding myself of the brilliant acronym KISS – Keep It Simple, Sathiya (if you don’t know the actual acronym, look it up. You’ll appreciate the hilarity). Sometimes when you remove the complexities and color...
These are the faces of two very excited Toronto Raptor fans circa June 2019. For the first time in the history of the franchise, Canada’s only NBA team was on top of the basketball world. My wife and I basically celebrated for 2 days straight. This picture was taken as we got ready for the championship parade through downtown Toronto.
I’ve been struck lately by watching sports in empty arenas as another wave of COVID starts to impact our day-to-day functioning. An empty sports arena just seems plain wrong. What is the point if there aren’t copious amounts of cheering fans to enjoy the display of athleticism and raw talent?!
Recently, while watching my beloved Toronto Raptors play the New York Knicks in an empty Scotiabank Arena, I realized how lonely I felt watching the game. How odd! If you would have asked me two years ago what I love most about watching sports, it would have been an easy response.
The players. The talent. The entertainment.
But I realized that ...
If you've ever watched pornography, you know that it can be a slippery slope. Thresholds for pleasure and content intensity can increase, leading us to places we never imagined were possible. It is important to know that for starters, you are not defined by what you watch, no matter how dark/intense it may be. There are neurological concepts at play that often drive us to these places and that is good news because our brains can change.
There are two particular concepts we're going to focus on for the purposes of this article. The first is that novelty enhances pleasure. This is a well-understood concept in both clinical and research environments. When you are experiencing something new for the first time, it amplifies the experience of pleasure, whether the situation is sexual or not. Think about the first time you had ice cream or the first time you had french fries. Magical experiences, right? Because not only are you experiencing something delicous/pleasurable, you're...
“What’s up everyone, my name is Sathiya and I’m the porn guy!”
I’m not even joking, that is pretty much word for word what I said as this picture was taken. The room exploded with laughter. There’s something really powerful about simply owning who you are and what you do.
It’s taken me a long time to get here. When I first started out, I was scared to even put the word “porn” in an Instagram post. I didn’t want to offend people or come across too strongly. Funny how much has changed in just a few short years.
Today I am on some of the top-ranked platforms in the world talking about my own struggle with porn, how I got free, and the program I’ve created to help other guys get free now. I’ve done my share of media appearances (National TV, top 1% podcasts, etc), but with the pending release of The Last Relapse, things have gone to another level.
Sometimes when I step on stages or hit record for an interview, I...
When I was addicted to porn for 15 years, there were almost zero resources out there offering any kind of useful insight or support to recover from porn addiction. In fact, the lack of resources that I experienced during my recovery is what fueled me to create this weekly newsletter and a daily podcast. Thankfully, more resources are available today than ever before and I wanted to share with you a few that I highly recommend.
You'll notice that some of these resources are more directly tied to porn addiction than others, and there is a good reason for that. Sometimes the best resources don't necessary speak straight to the issue, they speak straight to the heart. If they heal the heart, they'll likely help the addiction too.
1. Your Brain on Porn by Gary Wilson This is one of the most important books written in the 2000s concerning this subject. The late Gary Wilson compiled vast amounts of research, data, and supporting evidence (stories) to create this incredibly...
A fascinating discovery about porn addiction, and addiction at large, has surfaced in the last few years. It has revealed that gamblers are not addicted to winning, alcoholics are not addicted to alcohol, drug abusers are not addicted to substances, and porn addicts are not addicted to porn.
As scientists have begun to better understand the brain and what really makes us tick, it has become abundantly clear that while some addicts choose behaviors and others choose substances, their brains are really choosing the same thing: novelty. Research has shown that what forms an addiction is not obsession over the substance or behavior, but rather what is next. Really think about that one.
When a porn addict is consuming content, it is the anticipation of the next scene that drives their viewing. This is why even addicts set out to engage in a "little bit" of their respective drug, only to find themselves binging not too long after. The anticipation of what's next sucks them in.
I don’t always pose like Usain Bolt, but when I do, I make sure it’s on the highest mountain peak in Jamaica (about 7000ft above sea level).
It took us two tries to get to the peak of this mountain. The first try was thwarted by a landslide about 250 meters from the top! Only in Jamaica…
How often do we have mountain top moments in life? Promotions, achievements, hitting goals, freedom streaks, getting married, having kids, milestones, anniversaries, birthdays, accomplishing dreams, the list goes on.
Have you ever noticed how quickly a mountain top moment disappears? We trekked for hours to get to the top of this mountain in Jamaica, and a few short hours later we were back in the comfort of our home.
I lived a majority of the first 25 years of my life swinging from mountaintop to mountaintop. Searching for the achievement that would finally fulfill me. The accomplishment that would gain the recognition, notoriety, and approval that would make me feel validated,...
In my own research and studying, I am becoming more and more convinced that the two most important therapeutic practices and techniques that have been developed are attachment theory and acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT). In a later post, we'll talk about ACT, but here is what you must know about attachment theory if you're looking to fully recover from porn addiction.
Attachment theory was formed by a British psychologist named John Bowlby in the early 1900s. He observed that how children bond with their caregivers has a major impact on their quality of life and relationships, and began to wonder why. The basic premise of his discovery is that the bond we form with our primary caregiver (typically our mothers) is monumental in providing the security necessary for children to develop healthily. Mary Ainsworth then tested this with children 12-18 months by observing their responses in the absence of their caregivers. Her discoveries and the theory at large have major...