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how do you deal with an obsession?

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  • how do you deal with an obsession?

    This may not be a legit GTD question, but Iíll give it a shot.

    Iím obsessed with the world of pick-up. All my life Iíve been a loser when it comes to women. So when I decided to mend this aspect of my life, I stumbled across http://www.themysterymethod.com/forum

    And since then, Iíve been stuck. I would read all the post and achieves. And Iíd scour the internet for more. Iím not entirely neglecting all the other aspects of my life, because I still have other active projects Iím working on.

    But the problem is pick-up has taken a huge chunk of my time. Iíve written down my priorities and areas of focus, so I know in theory what they are. And learning to pick-up isnít more important than any of them.

    But when it gets down to the actual doing, Iíd find myself focusing more learning pick up. And other projects are not getting the focus that they deserve. Itís plain and simple wrong. And I know that. I just canít get myself to extract from this obsession.

    My guess is Iím overcompensating for my weakness. The hype would probably wear down in a few months, but Iím not sure.

    I tried scheduling. But I would always lose track of time, probably because Iím INFJ. Iíve tried alarms but Iíd just ignore them.

    This is kind of embarrassing to post, but Iíd really appreciate any advice.

  • #2
    S C A

    Maybe you should contact "Sexual Compulsives Anonymous" http://www.sca-recovery.org and try their 12-step recovery program.

    Good luck!

    Rainer

    Comment


    • #3
      Thanks for sharing!

      There are almost certainly deeper reasons for this behavior of yours, and I think you'd benefit from bringing them out into the light.

      My recommendation: Find a therapist you can talk to. Nothing major; just someone with whom you can discuss this in a bit of detail and who can give you some friendly advice.

      Best of luck. It can be a scary road at times, but it's worth travelling.

      Comment


      • #4
        Put it all into your system!

        I agree with the previous two posts, and I would also submit some GTDish thinking...

        The reason for your obsession may be that there is an area of focus in your life that either you have not acknowledged or are not giving appropriate attention to--something in the social/emotional/relationship realm, something to do with family or sex life or life goals or self-improvement or interpersonal skills development or somesuch. Approaching a therapist or a group might be a good project or next action for exploring and clarifying such an area.

        Also, consider David's words from the last Productive Talk podcast: "If you don't pay attention to what has your attention it'll take more of your attention than it deserves--or, if you don't pay approrpriate attention to it. So, learning to find out, 'What's got my attention? How do I unhook that?' Because it's still the basic truth--it's called, 'The more it's on your mind, the less it's happening.'" In your case, this thing may be getting out of control and happening TOO much for the same reason--because it represents something that hasn't been clarified, that has been allowed to run on an infinite feedback loop in your head until it became deafening.

        I find that I often resist putting highly personal, sensitive, or potentially embarrassing things into my system, but that can be almost more dangerous than having no system in the first place. One of more profound things I've noticed is that when my system is incomplete, the things I've left out become huge, inescapable attention-hogs; I free up mental and spiritual resources by getting my worries about work, school, and mundane daily chores off my mind and into my system, but whatever I was too tentative or sheepish to put into the system then takes over all of my newly freed-up energy.

        So, again, if this is becoming a serious problem, I don't disagree with the others--seeking help may be the perfect Next Action. But I think it's very possible that the reason the art of the pick-up is getting attention that the "real" areas of focus in your system aren't is that you've put THEM through your process so you don't worry about them, but you've left the pick-up in your head, rather than having an "Improve My Game" project or an appropriate psychological health or social area of focus.

        Best of luck!

        Comment


        • #5
          Too much energy?

          What wonderful posts, but a lot of energy put into responding to spam, don't you think?

          Carolyn

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          • #6
            Not spam, I reckon.

            It would be odd spam: "click on this link and you will develop an obsession and fail to fulfil your other life goals...!"

            Comment


            • #7
              Improving My Game - SA

              From MaxLiebman - "But I think it's very possible that the reason the art of the pick-up is getting attention that the "real" areas of focus in your system aren't is that you've put THEM through your process so you don't worry about them, but you've left the pick-up in your head, rather than having an "Improve My Game" project or an appropriate psychological health or social area of focus."

              Thanks for the insight about obsessive thoughts that have not made it into the "Improve My Game" project files. I've been trying to clean out all the "stuff" on my GTD runway - but hadn't realized that being stuck about something that I continuously ruminate over is a project too. I better get my capture tool out to listen to myself when I start "chewing the cud." "Improve My Game" is certainly an affirming title for a project list that identifies the really stuck areas of life.

              The original posting sounded like SPAM and I got suspicious too. However, I thought the feedback was really helpful. I've also learned to re-frame SPAM as a reminder to me that sometimes my self-talk is worse than the SPAM. I send ten times more negative Self-Talk Spam to myself than my email account receives.

              Comment


              • #8
                Judging by the first line, I bet it's not spam. And it's a reasonable topic for discussion.

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                • #9
                  ... but why does he include a link?

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    The possibility of spam occurred to me, but there was a lot of effort put into framing it in a cogent, topical issue and drafting readable and believable prose; also, no indication that the forum linked to or any other part of his obsession has brought him anything but trouble (or, at least, done anything but wasted his time and troubled him about his priorities).

                    If it is spam, it is supremely odd spam, and still raises a real enough issue (whether it's real to him or not), so I took at face value. In the event that it is spam, I still enjoyed drafting my reply, and he's clearly putting too much effort into for the response he's going to generate, so it's his loss, not mine.
                    Last edited by maxleibman; 12-30-2006, 05:27 PM. Reason: clarified first sentence of second paragraph

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I was hesitant at first to post because Iím not sure what kind of reply Iíd get or whether Iíd actually get a reply, but I said what the heck.

                      Originally posted by maxleibman View Post
                      The reason for your obsession may be that there is an area of focus in your life that either you have not acknowledged or are not giving appropriate attention to--something in the social/emotional/relationship realm, something to do with family or sex life or life goals or self-improvement or interpersonal skills development or somesuch.
                      Best of luck!
                      Iíve noticed thatÖ in fact I did write it down, but only after I was already hooked. And itís funny because I used the exact same wording, ďImprove my game.Ē And one of my next actions is: read chapter 2. Now Iíd choose that action over other actions Ė regardless of priorities Ė which is whatís causing the problem. In addition to that, Iíd be reading additional chapters too, and would focus on sarging (a term for picking up) whenever Iím out (even if it isnít on my @out list, and Iíd neglect those that are), so you can see Iím wasting too much time on this.

                      Iím still technically on vacation because of the holidays, so I can still afford to lag behind on my other projects, although I have this slight squirmy feeling Iím not living up to my priorities.

                      I donít think Iím such a bad case that I need therapy, so Iíd skip the advice.

                      I just finished reading the book ďThe GameĒ by Neil Strauss, where he described how the subculture of pick-up he got into was in a sense a false reality, which he eventually walked away from.

                      Now Iím thinking how my mind was clouded by this false reality too, although I still think I need to improve my game, as part of interpersonal skills development. In the back of my mind I knew my purpose of reading the book was to help myself extract from this obsession.

                      In retrospect, I think the reason I got overly obsessed was because I put it into my system too late. I was already engrossed with PUAs (pick-up artists) before I considered relationships an area of focus and wrote down a project for it, trying to restrict myself to the time constraints set by having to balance all the NAs I have. And apparently it didnít work. I was so hooked I couldn't take it easy.

                      Originally posted by maxleibman View Post
                      I find that I often resist putting highly personal, sensitive, or potentially embarrassing things into my system, but that can be almost more dangerous than having no system in the first place. One of more profound things I've noticed is that when my system is incomplete, the things I've left out become huge, inescapable attention-hogs; I free up mental and spiritual resources by getting my worries about work, school, and mundane daily chores off my mind and into my system, but whatever I was too tentative or sheepish to put into the system then takes over all of my newly freed-up energy.
                      I couldnít agree more. My experience was clearly a manifestation of my lack of focus in an area that is important TO ME. I neglected to process it down to my system and it eventually turned into the attention hog you talked about.

                      I agree that whatever it is, no matter how insignificant it seems, should be captured into the system. Whether itís social insecurity, childhood fear, past family disputes, or simply a slight misunderstanding with a friend, it is, IMHO, still considered an open loop that needs to be closed. Mine was just a bit too personal, so maybe thatís the reason why some thought it was spam.

                      Even if some would say GTDís only function is to help one get things done, and the system wouldnít care whether itís to start your own business and have more quality time with your daughter, or to rob banks, pick up women, and ruin your life, I still think simply getting everything out into a system and seeing it all would actually help get oneís life in order.

                      Thanks for responses, it helped a lot. Typing it out and knowing someone else was reading was kinda therapeutic too. And just for the record, this is not a spam.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        It is spam. Where did he go if he really wanted advice?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by mystery_man View Post
                          I donít think Iím such a bad case that I need therapy, so Iíd skip the advice.
                          Therapy's not about it being "bad enough." But yes, it's certainly your choice.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by darlakbrown View Post
                            It is spam. Where did he go if he really wanted advice?
                            He came back and wrote the fairly lengthy response to what we'd suggested that appears right above your question (and, if the timestamps are accurate, he did so about 2 days before your post).
                            Last edited by maxleibman; 01-03-2007, 09:05 PM. Reason: Changed "a full" to the more accurate "about."

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              In one way pick-up is about more than getting girls in your bed. It's about improving yourself and your whole life. Been there, done that, and keep looking at it now and then not to revert to becoming an AFC again. The truth is, becoming good at PU requires effort and time. And it's a big project with many subprojects (getting confidence, learning to groom better, voice lessons, body language, NLP, learning how to open, etc).

                              What made me spend less time with reading all the boards, was to see how everything you do is geared towards improving yourself, and thus be more successful with girls. Eg, instead of just learning the different phases om the MM, also come to see that being a cool guy with good grades attracts girls also. And that when you have a nice job with some financial freedom, you'll have it much easier to create space and place and time for the girls you'll be bringing in.

                              There nothing wrong with wanting some regular vulcanic activity, but come to see it as a project with subprojects that all need care for the larger project to be successful in the long run.

                              Comment

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