Move the Feet!

For sexaholics one of the most difficult parts of recovery is that our program is so simple. We have the Steps suggested as a program of recovery and we are told to ask God’s protection and care with complete abandon. Our recovery goal is equally simple: we have a spiritual awakening as the result of these Steps. We lived a self-centered life replete with nearly constant fantasy and sexual arousal. Having spewed a seemingly endless string of lies and diversions, it’s no wonder that we expect sobriety and recovery to be complicated. We are wrong.

My sponsor told me that we only have to pray one more time than we lust. This means I must use a prayer as often as I have a sexual fantasy or image in my head plus one more prayer. As with so many recommendations in Sexaholics Anonymous, this tool works if I work it. He also said to me that “God help me!” is a great prayer because we can fit so many of the prayers into a short period of time. When I use it, I am reminded that he is right.

He also told me that when I find myself focusing on some body part of a woman and when I am drawn to some sexual image in print or on the computer, I am just “doing my job.” He said, often, “David, we are sexaholics–it’s our job to lust and to be distracted by sexual images. It’s what we do next that matters!” If what I do next is to trust God, work the Steps, go to meetings, help others, and surrender to God my right to lust, once again he is proven right.

However, there is a recovery tool which, if used immediately and often, allows the other tools to be more useful. That is, when I am disturbed in any way by any lust image, I must MOVE THE FEET! Whether I am lying in bed or reading in my living room or driving down a city street or sitting in a restaurant, if I am willing to get out of that situation by simply moving my feet, I will dramatically reduce the lust and increase my willingness to use my SA tools. So, if I roll out of bed onto the floor, and perhaps even leave the room, lust will ebb. If I put down the magazine or close the computer and move away from the table, lust will ebb. If I push down on the accelerator or brake the car to a stop or turn the corner, lust will ebb. If I get up and change places at the restaurant table or perhaps just go to the restroom, lust will ebb. My discovery over the years is that sometimes working the Steps means in some way moving my feet. The lust will always ebb.

An SA might retort, well “when I move my feet to get a better look, what good is that?” Simply by moving, however, we are giving ourselves a second chance to get to safety. Often I have to move my feet again to be safe and serene. So what? Moving my feet only once in response to lust is just like doing a prayer only once or surrendering my right to lust only once. We just choose sobriety and recovery one more time than lusting. It’s that simple.

David M., Oregon, USA

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