When temptation arises, your mind becomes urgently focused on the object of your desire, whether it's porn, sex, masturbation or something else. The following is a really practical list of 68 activities you can quickly choose to do instead of giving over to your mind. Enjoy!
1. Go for a run
2. Walk through a local botanic garden or park
3. Talk to your pet
4. Look at your sobriety counter if you have one. Remember what’s at stake
5. Get out of your room
6. Call a friend
7. Look through old photo albums
8. Have a TV series which you know has zero sexual temptation in it. Throw on an episode. (I like “The Office”. Comedy heals
9. Create a playlist with upbeat, non-sexual songs which you can blast in your ears and dance to!
10. Play your musical instrument
11. Memorise a whole book of the Bible, or a meaningful poem or other sacred book
12. Colour in
13. Read a good book
14. Invite a friend over, or go visit them
15. Bake a cake and listen to loud music
16. Journal about how you’re feeling and why
19. Vigorously clean your house
20. Say “NO” for five minutes straight
21. Think about your Parents
22. Prepare a small notepad or poster with your personal top #5 reasons to not give in. Read it. Add to it
23. Tell someone what’s on your mind, or what you accidentally saw. You can’t do it alone!
24. Exegete a bible passage
25. Go grocery shopping
26. Stand outside and count the trees, or the cars
27. Call your Grandmother
28. Stay away from the computer. Stay away from your phone. Physically turn them off and put them in a drawer
29. Get in the car and drive. Find some stars to gaze at
30. Go to your favourite café and sit with a coffee
31. Write a letter of encouragement to someone you love
32. Pretend you’re a hip hop artist and write a rap about your day. Dance.
33. Paint your nails
34. Clean the toilet
35. Open all the doors and windows and blinds in your house. Don’t give yourself the chance to hide
36. Read this list
37. Peruse The Grace Spot for stories and encouragement
38. Watch the news
39. Pluck your eyebrows
40. Splash your face with freezing water
41. Go into your wardrobe and see how many items of clothing you can put on before you fall over or break something
42. Put on your funniest DVD
43. If you have maracas, shake them like pancake mix. There’s nothing less sexy than maracas and noise
44. Do your uni assignment. With books, pen and paper
45. Count to the highest number you can
46. Plan a holiday. Plan your week
47. Go to the gym. Even if it’s super late
48. Go for a swim
49. Sort through your bookshelf
50. Clean our your closet
51. Cook dinners for the next few nights and freeze them
52. Play a prank on someone
53. Prepare a photo album of hilarious photos, pugs doing cute stuff and cats failing at being cats. Look at it. Feast your eyes
54. Make art. Take your emotion and urgency and make it into something powerful
55. Get crafty- stick some glitter on something
56. Go hiking
57. Cuddle a soft toy
58. Go to sleep
59. Teach your pet a new trick
60. Say the alphabet backward
61. Learn a cool party trick
62. Learn how to ride a unicycle. You won’t want anything near your privates after that. (trust me. I used to compete in unicycle competitions. Buy one off ebay for cheaps)
63. Learn how to juggle. It’s very distracting!
64. Look at photos of you pre-addiction. Be encouraged to get back to that freedom
65. Go and make a cup of tea and sit in a common area to drink it slowly
66. Weed your garden
67. Go to the 24/7 K-mart or Woolies
68. Just get out of the house, and tell someone else that you’re struggling.
In closing: keep your clothes on, avoid alcohol and drugs; and don’t let those thoughts or images stay on your mind for longer than five seconds. Don't worry about disturbing the peace if it's 3am and temptation strikes. Your recovery is more important than a bit of noise or disgruntled roomies. Bake that 3am lust cake, girl!
Choose the most practical and helpful suggestions and write them up on your wall or phone. If you think hitting the dance floor (your living room) like Beyonce is going to help- go make that safe playlist right now! Or, if you want to create an album of funny pictures or encouraging words- go and do that, too! This will keep you in good stead when temptation strikes! Keep them near, and keep fighting, my brave, warrior women! You can do this!
*note: excessive exercise can become a form of punishment/self-harm and an addiction in itself. Ensure you use it as a tool to distract yourself and better your mental and physical health rather than uncontrolled and brutal punishment. Think of it as a great tool, rather than a way to crush yourself.