2 months--no drugs or alcohol

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2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby gib » Thu Dec 12, 2013 10:25 pm

Hello everyone,

Today is my last day of major intoxication. For the next 2 months after today, I plan on complete, total, and utter sobriety. That means no drugs, no alcohol, and no caffeine. Today is the business Christmas party... so I have to get drunk today... but after that, no substances for me for 2 months (that includes my birthday and New Years Eve).

Why do you care? Well, you don't have to care. This thread is not for you, it's for me. It happens to be a fact about human psychology that one can stick to a commitment more tenaciously if one announces it to as many people as possible. I figured broadcasting this to all ILP members would surely do the trick.

But that's not the only reason. I also want this to be therapeutic. I've found in the last year or so that ILP has not only been a great place for me to do philosophy with like minded people, but also be very therapeutic and spiritual for myself (the more so if we discuss depth philosophy as opposed to insight philosophy). So I want to make this announcement and see where this goes.

Why only 2 month? Why not forever? Well, because going cold turkey forever is too much for me right now. I want to do this in phases. What I'm trying to give myself is a series of hands-on experiences with sobriety. This is another fact about human psychology: one can believe in things with more conviction when those beliefs are grounded on real-life, concrete experience. And I know the experience of sobriety has a lot to offer in this department. I know because I've done it before--in particular, when abstaining from caffeine. I'm a caffeine addict who tries his best to do caffeine only once per week (usually Fridays), but on occasion, I will try going for a 2 week stretch. The thing I find during these 2 week stretches is that usually by the second week, I get my natural energy levels back. I'm thinking more clearly, not as moody, more alert, more energetic, can stay awake for longer in the day, thinking a bit more quickly. I mean, it's nothing like the buzz I get off 3 cups of coffee on my Fridays, but it's noticeably better than the aftermath through the weekend and early parts of the week after those Fridays (and that aftermath has a lot to do with the alcohol that usually follows the caffeine high, but more on that below). This is what I need. I need these empirical results. I need to actually feel the effects of sobriety--the positive effects, the ones that will tell me "you know, Gibran, sobriety does have its perks." I mean, getting high, drunk, or stoned obviously has its perks, but they're more immediate and short lived, whereas the thought of feeling good, feeling better about myself (physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually, etc.) all the time, even if not as intensely, certainly is appealing, and works well as a motivator. But the catch is that it can only work as a motivator if I give myself these hands-on experiences. So that's what I'm doing.

Now, I just realized, of course, this doesn't answer the question: Why only 2 months? Why not forever.

Well, the answer is, I have a 5 year plan. I plan, over the next 5 years, to do a whole series of 2 month stretches. I need this to be experimental. I need to treat it scientifically. That's the only way I'm going to get these hands-on, concrete experiences, and the only way those experiences are going to be reliable. For this first 2 month stretch, I'm going to be abstaining from all substances. And for every subsequent stretch, I'm going to try different combinations. These combinations consist of 3 drug types: caffeine, alcohol, and cannabinoids (the last of which doesn't include marijuana alone, but a whole bunch of chemicals that have the same effects as THC, so I kind of class them all together). So, for example, the next 2 month stretch might be one in which I abstain from caffeine and alcohol, but not the cannabinoids. This way, I can become more precise in my decision about what I want to cut out of my life and what I don't.

Ultimately, the one drug that I think I really need to cut out is the caffeine. This may sound ironic, but out all three drug types, I think it's the caffeine that's killing me. But, Gib, isn't alcohol and illegal substances like pot more dangerous? Not for me. No, I don't mean that I'm special in any way; what I mean is that caffeine is the one drug which is the root source of the problems in my life. The alcohol, though much more hazardous to my health, is dependent on the caffeine for its damaging effects. I call myself a conditional alcoholic because my alcoholism is highly depend on when I'm jacked up on caffeine. No caffeine, no uncontrollable urges to drink. That's not to say I'd never have a drink without the caffeine, but that when I drink, it wouldn't be any more out of control than it would be for the next person. I'd drink socially and I'd know when to cut myself off. I say this not just as a prediction but from past experience. On my non-caffeine days, I really don't have a strong urge to drink, but if the occasion calls for it (ex. we're having drinks after work), I partake in a couple beers. But really, I often don't want to drink on my non-caffeine days--I know all it will do is make me tired; sure, it'll give me a buzz for maybe an hour or two, but then I'll want to crash on a nice, comfy sofa or bed--and this will not do if I've got things to do. So the urge isn't really there. Add caffeine to the mix, however, and I know I can have a reeeally good time getting drunk. I won't get tired for hours--and this is especially true if I keep my caffeine tolerance low (which is why I drink coffee only once a week).

Now when it comes to other drugs, like the cannabinoids, that too is highly addictive, but I don't think it's causing any real problems in my life. The main objective in this 5 year plan is to see whether I can (and should) rid my life of caffeine, mainly, and to see if the "ism" can be dropped from my "alcoholism" as a result of that. (as John Searle is known for saying: "That's a prediction, not a promise!"). The cannabinoids, however, I'm not sure I even want to give up. The only real problem I see it causing in my life is it distracts me from getting things done. Like, if the wife takes the kids out for a couple hours, I might smoke up and during the next hour at least, I'll get nothing done except listen to my music and surf ILP looking for some trippy shit to read. But other than that, it actually makes me feel very peaceful and zenny (you know, zen-like, in a state of zen). It has always been a great source of moral and spiritual insight, inspiring me to make improvements to myself and for my family (after the initial emotional roller-coaster ride, that is <-- but even that can be a rush).

But supposing I even give that up after a while. I still want to experiment with certain psychedelics, but it would only be occasionally and never more than 4 or 5 times during a certain period in my life (like over 3 or 4 months). After that, I'll dump it (I could even give it to my wife and she can keep track of how often I've asked for it, and get her to promise to flush it after the fifth use). The reason why I want to stick with this practice is because it is the one function I find in psychedelics (and other drugs I suppose) that really serves my spiritual purposes. My whole philosophy, on which my spirituality is based, is about experiences--especially foreign, unfamiliar experiences that the human brain simply cannot have in its normal states. To me, using psychedelics for this purpose is like a scientist wanting to experiment in order to learn from nature, or a Christian wanting to go to church in order to get closer to God.

You know, it took me a while to realize I was abusing drugs. I had always told myself that this was the whole reason I did psychedelics--the explore alternate states of consciousness, to see what the human mind (or mind in general) was capable of experiencing--and I even told my wife this after we got into a few heated arguments over the matter. But after hearing myself put this argument forward, I soon realized it wasn't true--it wasn't the reason I was doing drugs (at least, the cannabinoids). If it were true, the experience of getting high off cannabinoids would still be new to me--but it wasn't. I had been doing cannabinoids for years at that time, and it was the same old experience every time. It was wild, it was fun, wrestling with demons, and yes, I could get new and interesting insights every time (btw, 90% of insights you get on cannabinoids really seem deep and intelligent at the time, but turn out to be major flops after sobering up--which is why I never post on ILP while stoned), but the experience had definitely been worn thin by then. So I couldn't use the excuse that I was exploring different mind state; instead I had to own up to the fact that I had become addicted to the buzz. I get board on a Friday night, and after the wife and kids have gone to bed (and I'm still awake because it's a caffeine day), I smoke up and feel good.

So that's it. I want to feel better. I want to have more energy. I feel physically sluggish most of the time, sometimes needing to go to bed before the kids. And I can be somewhat irritable (like grumpy cat) in the mornings, near the beginning of the week, even depressed sometimes. When I've over done the caffeine (not overdosed), like drinking several cups of coffee three days in a row, I can't think straight and I get edgy. I know from my past experiences with the occasional 2 week stretch, I can feel better, I can regain my energy and positive mood (although I know I will always miss the Friday buzz). So we'll do this and see what happens.

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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby Ben JS » Fri Dec 13, 2013 1:20 am

Good luck with your plan. If you can pull it off, you'll be better for it.

Some tips that helped me -

If you need an energy boost, there's lots of foods you can eat instead of resorting to caffeine.
Fruit, nuts, yogurts, eggs etc. Google it for more info.

Regular exercise. If you do that, you'll have more energy, metabolism will increase, you'll sleep better, feel happier.

As for stress (assuming that's why you drink), find activities and methods that calm you. Something you enjoy or value that doesn't demand anything great of you. Also, exercise is a great stress relief.

Hope something there's useful to you.

Again, good luck and stay strong! :)
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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby tentative » Fri Dec 13, 2013 1:47 am

Short term plan: Make it till 5 PM.

Long term plan: String together a whole bunch of short term plans.
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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby Orbie » Fri Dec 13, 2013 4:26 am

Good luck with your plan, gib, I myself have been a periodic user for years and years, and when I can not stand reality any longer and have time to be totally free, then I will binge, but only with the thought that it is temporary.

I agree with your plan and I feel your aim is coming from one of recurrent usage. 2 months would be too long for me, the max I can bear is 1 month.

As far as strong psychedelics is concerned, I must ask you if you had ever taken them, if so I would be careful. I had a very dreadful, near death experience, with an unsupervised very high dosage. I have had recurrent flashbacks since the 60's.

Good luck!
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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby gib » Fri Dec 13, 2013 4:57 pm

Eeeugh... sobriety sucks. :D

Thanks everyone for your well wishes.

Joe Schmoe wrote:If you need an energy boost, there's lots of foods you can eat instead of resorting to caffeine.
Fruit, nuts, yogurts, eggs etc. Google it for more info.


That's actually really good advice. Thanks.

tentative wrote:Short term plan: Make it till 5 PM.


Too late :lol:

obe wrote:As far as strong psychedelics is concerned, I must ask you if you had ever taken them...


Strong, as in acid and mushrooms? Yes, but not very many times, and mostly way in my past, and only mild doses (2 tabs of acid at a rave was the most I've done and that was kind of an "alarming" trip to put it one way).
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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby Helandhighwater » Fri Dec 13, 2013 9:40 pm

I went three months without tea once it was hell I am English after all but gz OP. Kick that rabbit.
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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby uglypeoplefucking » Sun Dec 15, 2013 2:06 pm

Gib, you're insane / masochistic. Anyone who wants MY drugs and alcohol can count on removing them from my cold, dead hands.
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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby MagsJ » Sun Dec 15, 2013 6:46 pm

I have a feeling that this might be you after the two months are up 8-[

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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby gib » Sun Dec 15, 2013 9:37 pm

MagsJ wrote:I have a feeling that this might be you after the two months are up 8-[

image.jpg




I don't get it.
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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby MagsJ » Sun Dec 15, 2013 11:35 pm

gib wrote:I don't get it.

Drink on tap, minus the Taliban costume of course #-o I can just imagine you all kitted out like that :lol:

The 2nd image being you after your abstinence, but in human not cat form :)
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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby Kriswest » Mon Dec 16, 2013 12:48 am

You got it made in the shade gib, 3/4 of the battle is mindset. Don't let life break it.
I will be bitchy, cranky, sweet, happy, kind, pain in the ass all at random times from now on. I am embracing my mentalpause until further notice. Viva lack of total control!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This is not a test,,, this is my life right now. Have a good day and please buckle up for safety reasons,, All those in high chairs, go in the back of the room.
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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby gib » Mon Dec 16, 2013 4:34 am

MagsJ wrote:Drink on tap, minus the Taliban costume of course #-o I can just imagine you all kitted out like that :lol:


A celebratory self-congratulations party? You know I'm planning it ;).

I'm predicting that by Feb. 14th (woaw, Valentine's day :o ), I will have collected enough music to put together my next mix. You see, I have this tradition of collecting music, and every 3 or 4 months or so, I usually get enough to put together a mix and I will listen to it highly caffeinated, drunk, and stoned. Put a headset on that guy in the pic and that just might be me in 2 months. :lol:
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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby gib » Wed Dec 18, 2013 4:05 am

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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby gib » Mon Jan 13, 2014 5:14 pm

1 month of complete sobriety!
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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby statiktech » Mon Jan 13, 2014 5:19 pm

Well? How do you feel comparatively?

I quit with the caffeine several months ago and have noticed that I actually feel better without it, both physically and mentally.
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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby Mr Reasonable » Mon Jan 13, 2014 10:12 pm

This thread....well....you guys probably know how I feel about all this.
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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby Orbie » Mon Jan 13, 2014 10:22 pm

What about us, who have to make up our chemical mixes as we go along to get it just right? The ones who are a tad concerned about whether our philosophy would be enhanced or degraded as a consequence of not getting it just right?
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In answer to your prayer
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you be men
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bow,
Then, your obedient

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And that is faithful
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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby Kriswest » Mon Jan 13, 2014 11:15 pm

gib wrote:1 month of complete sobriety!

Congratulations! !!
I will be bitchy, cranky, sweet, happy, kind, pain in the ass all at random times from now on. I am embracing my mentalpause until further notice. Viva lack of total control!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This is not a test,,, this is my life right now. Have a good day and please buckle up for safety reasons,, All those in high chairs, go in the back of the room.
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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby gib » Tue Jan 14, 2014 4:11 am

Thanks Kris!

statiktech wrote:Well? How do you feel comparatively?


I do feel better, but not as much as I thought I would.

I remember from my various 2 week stretches that within the second week, I got my energy back. This has happened, but I was expecting it to be a bit more steady. I'm finding that it's a bit more hit and miss. I'm not fully alert and full of energy throughout the whole day. I'm finding that on some days, still need a nap in the afternoon--not as bad, mind you, and not for as long--but it still happens. I'm finding that I'm usually at my energy peek late in the evening. I remember this from my teenage-hood. I would often stay up 'til 1 or 2 in the morning--I just wasn't tired. I got hooked on caffein in the summer of 98 (I remember because I remember who it was who introduced me to caffein pills), so that would make me 22 at the time. I'm finding that pattern has returned. But it's a mixed blessing. It's not so good on a work night when I need to get at least 8 hours of sleep. Even if I go to bed, I tend to lie there awake thinking about shit until 2 or 3 in the morning. Then I'm dead tired for the rest of the day afterwards.

Why, oh, why could I not have this energy throughout the day?! :lol:

As for the moodiness, I'm not really as grumpy in the morning--not really grumpy at all, in fact--but I've found I haven't really become any less prone to depression <-- it's not much of a surprise that this is more psychological than physiological.

mr reasonable... or should I say SMEARS wrote:This thread....well....you guys probably know how I feel about all this.


Yes, smears, we all know how you feel about topics like this ;)

But don't you worry--you're invited up to Canada on Feb. 15th to celebrate with me my success at 2 months of sobriety, and we'll get sloshed and stoned (but you have to abstain from caffein for at least a week--otherwise, you'll never keep up with me :lol:).

obe wrote:What about us, who have to make up our chemical mixes as we go along to get it just right? The ones who are a tad concerned about whether our philosophy would be enhanced or degraded as a consequence of not getting it just right?


What about you? I need the same thing, except for me it's a matter of intensity and frequency. Usually the few days after a serious binge, I just don't feel like posting at all (although I do feel compelled to respond to my own threads).
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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby Mr Reasonable » Tue Jan 14, 2014 9:35 am

I would totally come up there but I'm gonna be in Florida that week.

What part of Canada?
You see...a pimp's love is very different from that of a square.
Dating a stripper is like eating a noisy bag of chips in church. Everyone looks at you in disgust, but deep down they want some too.

What exactly is logic? -Magnus Anderson

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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby gib » Tue Jan 14, 2014 4:10 pm

Calgary.
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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby statiktech » Tue Jan 14, 2014 5:38 pm

gib wrote:I do feel better, but not as much as I thought I would.

I remember from my various 2 week stretches that within the second week, I got my energy back. This has happened, but I was expecting it to be a bit more steady. I'm finding that it's a bit more hit and miss. I'm not fully alert and full of energy throughout the whole day. I'm finding that on some days, still need a nap in the afternoon--not as bad, mind you, and not for as long--but it still happens. I'm finding that I'm usually at my energy peek late in the evening. I remember this from my teenage-hood. I would often stay up 'til 1 or 2 in the morning--I just wasn't tired. I got hooked on caffein in the summer of 98 (I remember because I remember who it was who introduced me to caffein pills), so that would make me 22 at the time. I'm finding that pattern has returned. But it's a mixed blessing. It's not so good on a work night when I need to get at least 8 hours of sleep. Even if I go to bed, I tend to lie there awake thinking about shit until 2 or 3 in the morning. Then I'm dead tired for the rest of the day afterwards.


Well good for you for sticking it out man. It may get even better as time passes and you begin to forget the psychological aspect of the addiction.

As for the moodiness, I'm not really as grumpy in the morning--not really grumpy at all, in fact--but I've found I haven't really become any less prone to depression <-- it's not much of a surprise that this is more psychological than physiological.
[/quote]

Yeah, caffeine doesn't do much for my depression one way or the other; it never really has. I will say that my anxiety levels are far more tolerable, but I have a history of terrible anxiety. I also notice my mood is more stable. That's not to say my mood is great, but less peaks and valleys if that makes sense.
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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby Fixed Cross » Tue Jan 14, 2014 9:57 pm

Not even crack?
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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby gib » Wed Jan 15, 2014 5:53 am

statiktech wrote:Yeah, caffeine doesn't do much for my depression one way or the other; it never really has. I will say that my anxiety levels are far more tolerable, but I have a history of terrible anxiety. I also notice my mood is more stable. That's not to say my mood is great, but less peaks and valleys if that makes sense.


It makes perfect sense, stat.
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Re: 2 months--no drugs or alcohol

Postby gib » Fri Feb 14, 2014 5:12 pm

Guess what I'm doing right now? Drinking coffee!

Guess what I'll be doing tonight? Getting drunk!

That's right, boys and girls, it's been two months--two months and two days to be exact--since my last drunken, caffeinated, stoned binge. And I'm proud to say that I have not consumed a single drop or inhaled a single toke of drug saturated substances (actually, that's not quite true--I did have some decaf--but more on that below).

So what are the results?

Well, last time we spoke was around this time last month, I said this:

gib wrote:I do feel better, but not as much as I thought I would.

I remember from my various 2 week stretches that within the second week, I got my energy back. This has happened, but I was expecting it to be a bit more steady. I'm finding that it's a bit more hit and miss. I'm not fully alert and full of energy throughout the whole day. I'm finding that on some days, still need a nap in the afternoon--not as bad, mind you, and not for as long--but it still happens. I'm finding that I'm usually at my energy peek late in the evening. I remember this from my teenage-hood. I would often stay up 'til 1 or 2 in the morning--I just wasn't tired. I got hooked on caffein in the summer of 98 (I remember because I remember who it was who introduced me to caffein pills), so that would make me 22 at the time. I'm finding that pattern has returned. But it's a mixed blessing. It's not so good on a work night when I need to get at least 8 hours of sleep. Even if I go to bed, I tend to lie there awake thinking about shit until 2 or 3 in the morning. Then I'm dead tired for the rest of the day afterwards.

Why, oh, why could I not have this energy throughout the day?! :lol:

As for the moodiness, I'm not really as grumpy in the morning--not really grumpy at all, in fact--but I've found I haven't really become any less prone to depression <-- it's not much of a surprise that this is more psychological than physiological.


At least in the last two weeks, this pattern has changed. I'm not sure why. It's been a lot more steady. My sleep patterns have become what I'd call "normal"--that is, I generally get tired around 10:00-11:00 and I'm able to get a good night sleep--waking up at around 6 and feeling relatively refreshed. Throughout the day I have enough energy to get me through--still needing a bit of a nap in the afternoon, but like I said, not nearly as much or for as long as when I was drinking and caffeinating myself--and generally able to go home, get some chores done, spend some time with the kids, and go to bed at the same time. I wouldn't say I'm overly energetic--nothing like the caffeine highs that would keep me up 'til 2:00/3:00 o'clock in the morning--but I'd say I'm as energetic as I need to be. And what else would I expect? I've given my body a chance to take care of its own sleep and wakeful cycles. It'll manage them in just the right way--just the right amount of energy throughout the day, just the right amount of sleep throughout the night, getting tired just at the right time in the evening, and feeling refreshed from a good night's sleep at the right time in the morning. This also explains some of the more erratic ups and downs I experienced earlier in this experiment: they say that caffeine is like a block shoved behind the breaks of your car--with a block there, you can't apply the breaks, and so your brain just keeps buzzing, your bodily engines just keep churning the pistons--until you crash. But with my body taking over with its natural mechanism, there's nothing blocking it from slowing down when it needs to and speeding up when it needs to. So yes, abstaining from caffeine has allowed my body to naturally boost up the energy levels, but in a controlled fashion, such that it can turn them down when it needs to--and that's not always going to be at a consistent time of day. On some days I may need more sleep than usual--let's say because I had to get up early that day, or I did a lot of physical labor that day, or because I was depressed--and on those days, my body will tone down the energy levels. Other days it won't--I know that on the days where I couldn't get to sleep at a regular hour were days when my mind was dwelling on something, something bothering me or I was stressed about something--and my body accommodated by keeping me up a little while longer so that I could work those issues through in my mind. The point is, with my body in control of my sleep/wake cycles, it can decide when to put on the breaks and when to step on the gas, whereas with caffeine, stepping on the breaks is just not an option until it has dissipated from my system.

But yeah, I don't completely understand all the reasons for these ups and downs, but I suspect a huge part of it has to do with some emotional trials I've been going through (which tells me that my depression is not just drug induced). Some days I feel good, some days not. I'm a dweller. On bad days, I dwell over certain issues. This dwelling can go long into the night, and keeps me from sleeping. Other days, I'm feeling good, and this too can keep me up because, well, I feel good and I'm too excited to go to sleep. Another thing I have to take into consideration is that during the first month, I took a lot of time off work for the Christmas holidays--which means a lot more sleeping in and lazing around the house--which obviously does affect my sleep patterns and energy levels--not to mention the unhealthy eating from all the holiday junk food and irregular meals.

But like I said, for the past two weeks, I've been rather steady with my sleep patterns--not quite steady emotionally--but no ups and downs with how tired or wakeful I feel. One thing that I think factored into this was that about two to three weeks ago, I stopped drinking decaf. Before that, I thought, what the hell--I'm on a caffeine fast, might as well drink decaf as a substitute--until, out of curiosity, I decided to google the caffeine content of decaf only to find that there are significant traces of caffeine therein. Who would a' thunk? Not nearly as much as a regular cup of coffee, of course, but sometimes more than tea. Shit! I thought to myself. I've always had my suspicions that my body is extra sensitive to even the slightest doses of chemicals I put into it, and though with this minor amount of caffeine, I'd never get a buzz, maybe my body was still reacting to it. So I decided to lay off the decaf--and about a week later, my energy and sleep patterns began to stabilize, and at a relatively high level (like I said, nothing like the caffeine buzz that would keep me up into the wee hours of the morning, but enough to feel good and to feel that I can take on the day). I think this correlation--abstaining from decaf and my sleep and energy levels stabilizing about a week later--is too isolated an incident to draw any conclusions, but it's a possibility worth testing out again in the future.

So was it worth it? Of course. To learn some things about myself, sure it's worth it. Would I do it again. Yes--that's part of the plan. But based on these last few months, I'd want to repeat the exact same experiment. That is, even though I said in my OP, subsequent experiments like this would involved different combinations of the drugs--maybe abstaining from alcohol and caffeine but not psychedelics, or abstaining from all substances except alcohol--I think this one (in which I abstain from all substances period) needs to be repeated. This time, I'd want to go the full 2 months without decaf. I also want to see how I feel emotionally and spiritually. The drugs I do, and the psychedelics in particular, have always been a source of moral and spiritual inspiration for me, and I imagine a life without drugs would feel empty and meaningless. I have had feelings like this on occasion throughout the past 2 months, my self-esteem taking a toll in the process, but even without the drugs, there's just too many factors involved to say definitively why I feel this way. Could just be the usually mood swings. I think everyone feels their lives are empty and meaningless when they sink into a depression--that's just the nature of the beast--and as I said in another thread, my self-esteem tends to go all over the map anyway--so I can't just yet pin these feelings all on a lack of drugs. But it's true--on those Fridays, when I allow myself to get buzzed on the caffeine and then drunk and stoned at night, it leaves me with a kind of spiritual boost such that I feel temporarily rejuvenated. I wonder if I need the drugs for this.

So I want to try this again when there isn't so much shit going on in my life that would seriously confound the experiment (I'm not telling you everything that's been going on in my life over the past 2 months, and that's on purpose, but suffice it to say that it's been somewhat of an emotional roller coaster ride). And yes, I know that we can't control for the emotional intrusions into our lives, and there's always going to be emotional bombs that drop on us periodically throughout our lives--two months without emotional challenges to deal with? Yeah right! :lol:--but these past few months have been especially trying. I'm aiming for the end of this upcoming summer, not so much because I'm just that good at forecasting when the emotional storms are going to hit and when I'm going to enjoy calmer emotional weather, but because I want to factor in body weight and exercise. You see, it's a pattern with me that in the summer time, I bike to work--and it's a good hour bike ride one way--and I also diet to lose weight. In the winter, I let myself go. I've got an almost insatiable appetite, so when I just give in to my desires to eat, I can get fat really quickly over the course of only a few months (well, not really fat, but I do develop a noticeable gut). So I get fat by the time spring hits, and skinny by the time fall hits. Right now, I'm fat. I want to try this out again when I'm skinny. This will test two things: 1) how my body weight affects my mood and sleep patterns, and 2) how exercise affects my mood and sleep patterns (btw, whoever it was who said exercise gives you more energy was full of shit--I'm exhausted on days when I bike to work and back, at least in the evenings, although it is true that for about an hour or two after the bike ride, the adrenaline is still in my system and I feel a bit more energized. But this is just common sense if you think about it--you work your body hard, you're going to get tired. But to be fair, I do have to test this a bit more scientifically: is the exhaustion partly a result of the drugs, or can I pin it solely on exercise?). I think this experiment would fit nicely in the fall season. Why? Because it would be nice to split it up between a period during which I'm riding my bike, and a period during which I've retired my bike for the winter season due to snow fall (I will not ride my bike after the snow begins to fall). That way, I will have a bit of a period during which I'm not exercising yet I'm still skinny (will have to hold off on stopping my diet so I stay thin for the duration of the experiment--and even there, an even more nuanced factor is introduced: body weight vs. rate of food intake--they say that the body is naturally more energized when hungry--why? They say because it needs that energy in order to hunt for food--which is subtly different from being energize due to stickiness--so I think I'll have to stay hungry for a bit).

Anyway, I'm going to report back in maybe a week or two and let you all know how I'm feeling then. I think this is important because it's not just about recognizing how I feel during the drug fast, but also recognizing how I feel after the fast is over--and well after it is over (i.e. one or two weeks) so that the drugs have had a chance to return me into my prior state/pattern, the one I was in before the fasting. It just grounds the conclusions I can draw from this experience more reliable... so stay tuned.

Yours truly, Grumpy Cat:

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gib
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