Avoiding Slip-Ups

The following tips may help you break a pornography habit and avoid relapses:

  1. Plan your week. Try to look ahead and anticipate times when you may feel stress, depression, or self-pity. Deal with your trigger points in advance.

  2. Avoid becoming overconfident and thinking that you are “over” this problem. This will often cause you to forget the little things that make big differences: mindfulness, personal and specific prayer, scripture study, journal writing, acts of service, and so on.

  3. Remember that you aren't able to do it by yourself—and you don't have to. Call upon the Lord, His representatives, trained professionals, trusted family members, and friends. Asking for help is not a weakness; it is a strength.

  4. Avoid thinking, "If only she would do this, or if only he would do that." Other people may not do anything that you want or need them to do. That's their choice. Realize that you must still find a way to go on despite being let down by someone on whom you relied. Blaming others will not help you overcome this addictive habit and will only cause relapse.

  5. Avoid thinking, "I have changed. Why hasn't everyone else?" As you see yourself making progress, you may expect others to start changing some of their behaviors. They may or may not decide to change. Focus on improving yourself. God gives us the power to change ourselves, not others. Try not to let others distract you from your desire to change. If you are not careful, you may find yourself saying, "No one else is changing, so why should I?”

  6. Do not think you can change overnight. Expecting too much too soon is problematic. Change is a process—not an event. Be patient.

  7. Realize that repentance is a process, not a single event. Continue to study and follow the counsel of prophets and apostles. For example, read and apply the principles in Elder Richard G. Scott’s conference address “Finding the Way Back” (Ensign, May 1990, 74–76).

  8. Set goals of abstinence. Begin with “one day at a time.” Keep going until you are habit free. Every day, pray to resist temptations that day.

  9. Seek out and cultivate good friends. Someone once said, “A friend is someone who knows all about you and loves you just the same.” Trusted friendships are vital to an atmosphere of recovery and ongoing healthy relationships.

  10. Recognize certain times and conditions that cause your temptations to come most strongly. Change the conditions, associations, or habits that have perpetuated the problem.

If and when you do slip up, learn from it. Ask yourself, “How did I let that happen? Where have I been slacking off? What do I need to pay more attention to?” Fight thoughts such as, “I can’t do it. I’m not good enough. I don’t have what it takes.” Consider reviewing the Relapse Analysis Form.