View Full Version : looking for motivators/coping strategies


TazsDad
07-01-13, 08:15 AM
I'm looking for ideas for motivators/coping strategies.

The long story is in my blog:
http://www.addforums.com/forums/blog.php?b=12164

I need to find some sort of reward system to motivate that doesn't involve one of my other addictions. I'm looking for ideas, if anyone has any.

I have 3 addictions that trouble me. The main one, alcoholism, I have a somewhat easier time with (really, I do). It's because I KNOW I can't have even one tiny little drink. It's all NO. No attempt to moderate.

The other 2 are much harder: eating and spending. I have to eat, and I have to pay my bills. I must do this in moderation. I have to say no to some things. I have a history of losing weight and gaining weight. Right now, I'm obese. I've lost 25 # since December, but I've stalled for months. I'm still obese. I have a very hard time eating less. And it is absolutely mental. Not physical.

Also, with $$$ , I mentally justify spending money on things that I want, but don't need. I am 61 and have NO savings. Right now, I'm current on most of my bills, it's the "discretionary" income that I need to save instead of spend.

If this is the wrong forum, either feel free to move it, or tell me and I will.

Thanks in advance for any help,

Pat

dresser
07-01-13, 06:17 PM
I too have an easier time with my alcoholism and for the same reason as you. I also
have "addictions" different names same results. my #1 killer addiction is putting me down-keeping me down. I try hard not to do it, N "its nothing to do with weight gain"
but at the end of my day my head has a TON of s*itt in it. and when it comes to justifying ,stalling, not completing things well picture me sitting in my FERRARI, facing the road so I can see N be seen, waving, hot day windows rolled up so you think I got AIR conditioner uu lookin good but without money to buy gas to start the moter
to turn the Air conditioner on or move the car and ME out of the drive way. welcome to the forum I think you fit, N if not you can stay long enough to get your breath at least

Nate W
07-01-13, 09:11 PM
Pat:

You said, ..."I need to find some sort of reward system to motivate that doesn't involve one of my other addictions. I'm looking for ideas, if anyone has any..."

We do suffer from boredom and lack of motivation, don't we?

I too am alcoholic. Alcohol and ADHD go hand in hand. I self medicated for years, using alcohol. I suffered severe boredom and eventually alcohol caught up with me. At some point I hurt so bad and lost so much I decided to give AA an honest try and eventually got sober. That was 8 years ago.

But like you, I suffered from severe lack of motivation. I was diagnosed in 1967 at age 7, with "minimal brain dysfunction". This is the outdated term for ADHD. Struggled all the way through school, barely making it. I have no idea how I got a college degree.

Well at 50 I decided to explore some options. Better living through chemistry. Anti-depressants were not cutting it (I tried a couple of SSRIs a few years earlier). Saw my Dr. and she suggested ADHD testing. I did that (a psychologist tested me) and the results indicated pretty severe ADHD and a few other abnomalties that I am not too sure if I have or not (Asperger Syndrome comes to mind).

I tried three ADHD medications (Adderall, methylphenidate, and dextroamphetamine, one after the other) and dextroamphetamine was the ticket. Here is my thread of how it changed my life:

http://www.addforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=142754

--Nate

TazsDad
07-05-13, 04:47 PM
Since this search for strong motivators is pretty constant, I've been doing some more thinking.

I'm starting to believe that allowing myself to reward myself for controlling my spending is ok.... If I choose a few rewards in advance and a consequent savings goal. Say, If I save $1250, I can replace my stolen 160gb iPod Classic. The idea being that in that brief moment between idea "Let's buy this! I NEED it. " I will be able to insert , in my mind, "Are you sure you NEED it or want it? If you don't buy this, you'll be $X closer to getting the iPod".
So now, I will try this for a while. If I can break that train of thought between stimulus and response, I believe I can achieve my goal.

I am, at the same time, going to visualize myself running as a motivator for controlling my eating. I CAN lose the weight, I have done it before. I have a hard time moderating. I absolutely LOVE to run, and I am too heavy for it now. I can jog fast, but not run the way I did when I weighed BELOW 200 pounds.

I am still open to any ideas from others as to help with motivators that have worked for you, or that you think might work. Thanks in advance for any ideas .

Thanks,

Pat

TazsDad
07-07-13, 07:19 AM
Pat:

You said, ..."I need to find some sort of reward system to motivate that doesn't involve one of my other addictions. I'm looking for ideas, if anyone has any..."

We do suffer from boredom and lack of motivation, don't we?

I too am alcoholic. Alcohol and ADHD go hand in hand. I self medicated for years, using alcohol. I suffered severe boredom and eventually alcohol caught up with me. At some point I hurt so bad and lost so much I decided to give AA an honest try and eventually got sober. That was 8 years ago.

But like you, I suffered from severe lack of motivation. I was diagnosed in 1967 at age 7, with "minimal brain dysfunction". This is the outdated term for ADHD. Struggled all the way through school, barely making it. I have no idea how I got a college degree.

Well at 50 I decided to explore some options. Better living through chemistry. Anti-depressants were not cutting it (I tried a couple of SSRIs a few years earlier). Saw my Dr. and she suggested ADHD testing. I did that (a psychologist tested me) and the results indicated pretty severe ADHD and a few other abnomalties that I am not too sure if I have or not (Asperger Syndrome comes to mind).

I tried three ADHD medications (Adderall, methylphenidate, and dextroamphetamine, one after the other) and dextroamphetamine was the ticket. Here is my thread of how it changed my life:

http://www.addforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=142754

--Nate

Hi Nate, thanks for your reply. I appreciate you sharing your experiences.

I would like to clarify on a few things, based on my experiences.

I don't suffer from a SEVERE lack of motivation. I have plenty of motivation. What I'm looking for as a coping strategy is an EXTREME motivator. That one motivator that will break thru all of my BS and rationalization and is strong enough to say "do you want to do this or not?". I may have found one for weight-loss, the idea of "running like the wind". I love to run, but at 225 , I'm a lot heavy to run. I'm thinking in terms of muscles, bones, my arthritis , etc... But I DO love to run. So, that's a carrot motivator.

Also, amphetamine is an extremely effective treatment for you. It is not for me. I also have a "side order" of Anxiety disorder and depression. I also have high-blood pressure. And.... I have had insomnia most of my life. I have tried amphetamines. I get bad headaches, and have to take more blood-pressure meds. I also abused the crap out of crystal meth in my 20's.... I don't want THAT monkey on my back.
So, not every med is for everybody. Straterra is horrible for me.... with little benefits. What really works for some folks is very bad for others.

So, I have learned to accept the limitations of ADD, and arrive at coping strategies for it. And that works for me.

Again, thanks for your post.

Pat

SquarePeg
07-07-13, 07:29 AM
I would say that a good therapist could help, but itīs neither easy nor quick. I had 2 years of psychotherapy, I was bulimic, but we never actually discussed the bulimia, it disappeared on itīs on whilst in therapy. I had nearly 2 years of therapy but itīs the best think I ever did for myself and that was nearly 25 years ago.

TazsDad
07-07-13, 07:33 AM
Also, this describes a lot what I'm looking for:
Between stimulus and response there is a space.
In that space is our power to choose our response.
In our response lies our growth and our freedom.
—Viktor Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning

Something I can insert into that space that causes me to consider my response, to eat that 2nd sandwich, to buy that book (which might be available at the library), to buy that gadget that at this moment I'm treating as a necessity... maybe I'll survive if I DON'T buy it.

TazsDad
07-07-13, 07:43 AM
@SquarePeg,

I too have used therapy. Off and On. I have gotten a lot out of it. Some don't. I've seen "counselors", not psychiatrists. My ADD and depression/anxiety became a huge puzzler for me in my late 40's. Then while getting my 12 year old son diagnosed, I said "Let's do me."... My ADD was worse than my son's ! So, for me, I started working on coping. I have a bad history of amphetamine abuse. Almost 20 years after diagnosis, I now take meds for depresssion/anxiety, insomnia and I have a CPAP machine to help me sleep.

I see a therapist to talk through my issues. My two main emphases are 1. Staying off the alcohol and 2. Dealing with my ADD and it's side effects.

This has been working for me. Now, if I can beat the eating and spending behaviors, I'll be pretty pleased. And from my perspective, it's God and myself I have to do what's right for . My kids are grown and gone. I'm single.

Thanks to everyone for listening.

Pat