In the 1800s cocaine, morphine, and heroin were prescribed to children.
And it wasn’t until 1964 that the U.S. Surgeon General concluded that cigarettes were unhealthy.
Today, someone would laugh if you told them cigarettes were healthy.
But what does this have to do with NoFap?
NoFap has long been criticized as a pseudo-science. And while there isn’t direct scientific evidence proving its effectiveness, the writing is on the wall.
Based on the current scientific method — porn and masturbation are seen as “normal” and “healthy” by many. But most men who’ve been on NoFap for an extended period know that porn is anything but healthy.
So why wait for science to catch up when we can use real experience to prove NoFap?
Sharing your experience on NoFap creates a catalog of anecdotes. And this information fuels others to quit PMO (porn, masturbation, orgasm). It also lets them know they’re on the right track.
You’re in for a treat today. Because I’ll be sharing pieces of my journey from day one to day 200 along with what I wish I knew before embarking.
Benefits of NoFap
Before we get into my journey, we need to answer a fundamental question.
Why would someone consider doing NoFap in the first place?
Simple. It’s because of the benefits.
At the heart of it, humans are egocentric. This is a fancy way of saying, we care about ourselves first. And it makes sense — how can you help others when you’re drowning yourself?
Whether you want bigger muscles, better sleep, or want to be a more pious practitioner of your faith, NoFap has a host of benefits you’d enjoy.
The physical benefits of NoFap help make your new lifestyle sustainable.
One benefit that underscores the others is increased energy levels . This is because your energy dictates everything you do in life.
A typical benefit guys report is improved sleep . This may be due to hormonal changes. Another explanation for higher quality sleep is better sleep hygiene. Many guys watch porn before bed to soothe them into sleep, no porn means no screen time before bed.
And lastly, a highly sought benefit is more muscle. Note, that this isn’t a direct benefit of NoFap. Not touching your willie isn’t the reason you’ll get more muscle.
Naturally increasing the amount of lean mass on your body is a process that takes years.
Check out our tips on how to gain muscle on NoFap.
Cloudy decision-making lowers the quality of your habits.
A benefit of NoFap that counters this is less brain fog. Clear decisions allow you to choose healthier options which will make NoFap easier.
You’ll also experience increased focus and concentration. Porn and masturbation are a distraction for many guys. Feeling bored in the middle of a workday? Open a few tabs and have a go lad. Negative emotions? Your escape is just a few clicks away.
No PMO hinders the path to a maladaptive coping mechanism.
Increased self-confidence and better self-image are keystone benefits of NoFap. Not everyone experiences all the benefits of NoFap. But an overwhelming amount of guys report feeling this at one point or another.
Your self-image is responsible for the shots you take in life. If you don’t believe you’ll get the job, get the girl, etc. Will you even try? It’s unlikely. You could be one of the best-looking, well-dressed guys with a lot of money in the bank. But if you view yourself in a negative light, you won’t be using your assets to their fullest potential.
Compulsive sexual behavior and porn use are known to cause a rift between partners.
Consider this study from May 2020. Researchers used 31 measures of relationship quality. Nearly every measure was negatively impacted by porn use. This was true for both men and women.
Although the study doesn’t claim causality, it still establishes a pattern with porn use. Namely, the more porn one watches, the poorer their romantic relationships typically turn out.
Again, if you have a poor relationship it could be for many reasons — not porn. Be sure to consult a professional relationship expert.
On the flip side, less porn can lead to a stronger emotional connection. Oftentimes, the quality of your intimacy isn’t decided by wacky positions in bed. It’s the level of emotional connection you have with your partner.
Set the Stage: Day 1 to 30
The first month is often the most difficult. This rings truer if you’ve never hit 30 days before. This took me years to achieve. But once I got there, each subsequent 30-day streak was easier than the last.
Personally, my demon was edging. Edging without porn would lead me to edge with porn. And that’d turn into a relapse.
It all started in the mind, I was “mentally” edging before it became physical. In order to counter this, I had to control my sexual thoughts and dismiss them when they arose.
The formula was simple. Mental edging leads to physical edging, and physical edging leads to relapse. If I could stop mental edging, I was in the clear.
Initial Challenges and Mindset
Urges and cravings have the tightest grip on you at this stage. You’ll need to develop strategies to fight them (more on this soon).
You’ll also need to develop a positive mindset. It’ll set the tone for the rest of the challenge and help when urges are at their worst.
Here are some practical tips to help you through the first month:
- Block explicit content: You can use porn-blocking software to block triggering content. Randomize the password and leave it with a friend or family member.
- Pick up healthy habits: Healthy habits around sleep, exercise, and diet will make it easier to resist temptation.
- Develop mindfulness: Each decision to indulge in pleasure (food, sex, entertainment, etc.) should be made mindfully. The idea is to train your mind to be conscious of your choices. This will help you to say no to PMO urges too.
Once you have a handle on managing urges and developing a positive mindset, you can turn your attention to building momentum.
Build Momentum: Day 31 to 90
In this stage, you’ll continue building positive habits. Celebrating wins and reflecting on your progress can also be beneficial for your mindset.
The first time I hit 30 days, I made the mistake of celebrating with a fap. It didn’t undo all my progress, but it made it much harder to get back on the wagon.
Progress and Victories
- Celebrate small wins: Congratulate yourself on getting this far! Most men will never get this far in their life. You’re one of the select few who did. Celebrate with positive self-talk, or go out for dinner.
- Reflect on changes: Think about the positive changes that got you here. Be sure to note them down in a book. Was it a change in diet and exercise? Was it a newfound meditation routine? This will let you return to the practice if you fall off your streak.
You’ll also want to double down on self-care habits. Oftentimes, the reason for relapse is a series of poor decisions that end with fapping.
- Exercise regularly: Exercise is known to elevate your mood, improve brain health, and reduce your urges. It allows your blood to flow to your muscles if you have an unwelcome erection.
- Eat a balanced diet: Studies show that a poor diet leads to fatigue and impaired decision-making — this can be a recipe for relapse.
- Get quality sleep: Getting adequate sleep reduces stress, which will cause fewer relapses. It’ll also allow you to think more clearly which is great when an urge comes up.
Integration: Day 91 to 150
When you find yourself past the 90-day mark, your goal should be to integrate NoFap into your life.
At this point, your relapses will be few and far between. Successful integration requires embracing your new lifestyle, learning how to deal with setbacks, and constantly improving. Let’s look at how you can implement each one.
Embracing the Lifestyle
As we mentioned earlier, mindfulness allows you to be conscious of each decision you make. Seeking pleasure such as a video game binging session or a box of cookies isn’t “bad” per se. Just make the decision mindfully. Reflect on the pleasure you’ll derive from such activities.
Also, embrace your new identity. You don’t fap anymore. Walk, talk, and act like it. Your behavior towards others and your outlook on life should reflect this.
Dealing With Setbacks
- Managing guilt: You may relapse in this stage. And the guilt hits harder because this is a longer streak. Instead of punishing yourself over the relapse, celebrate your progress.
- Learn from your mistakes: Each relapse is rich with information. Ask yourself why you relapsed. Were you tired? Hungry? Bored? This will make it easier to avoid it in the future.
- Understanding progress: It can be hard to know when you’re making progress. Day 45 can feel the same as day 30. In fact, it can sometimes feel worse.
I advise you to stop counting the days. Have a tracker, and keep it in the background. Moreover, understand that progress isn’t linear. Healing is a complex process, and it may take a while.
Some guys choose to measure progress using indicators of sexual function such as cured ED (erectile dysfunction). However, those without ED can use other factors to measure progress. These include your mood, frequency of urges, and even a habit tracker.
Past 90 days, NoFap should be a process running in the background. It should be as automatic as brushing your teeth.
Don’t actively think about it. Don’t visit NoFap forums regularly. Basically, your life shouldn’t revolve around NoFap anymore.
It sounds silly, right? Isn’t going on forums and reading posts about quitting helpful?
Of course, but not at your stage. Consider this: do you sit around and think about how to avoid eating poop? No. That’d be absurd because eating poop isn’t natural. You don’t have to try hard to not eat poop. That’s how fapping should feel to you.
Instead, shift your focus from NoFap to pursuing personal and professional goals. Also, keep up with your habits and develop them further.
I started training in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu shortly after NoFap. I’d attend classes regularly but didn’t compete. When I got past 90 days, my routine was getting stale. So I decided to sign up for my first competition.
I lost in the first round, but it motivated me to sign up for the next one. 29 matches and 12 medals later, I earned my blue belt.
NoFap can be seen the same way. Don’t fall into a mundane routine just to keep your streak alive. Experience new things, learn, and grow in the process.
Enjoying the Benefits: Day 151 to 200
Being clean for over five months is quite an accomplishment. At this stage, it’s helpful to reflect on all the ways you’ve transformed. Also, take this time to give back to the community and help others.
However you’ve transformed, I highly advise you to make a journal entry. List all the ways you’ve transformed for the better. This is helpful to look back on if any temptations arise. And it affirms that you made the right decision pursuing the NoFap lifestyle.
Personally, I noticed I was checking out women less in public. Not something groundbreaking, but having control of myself changed the way I viewed myself. This leads me to my next point, self-image.
My self-esteem skyrocketed. And it flavored my day-to-day interactions. Job interviews would always start with a firm handshake. Anytime I caught myself with poor posture I’d be mindful of it and stand straight. You get the point.
Sharing your success story is one of the best ways you can help others. It shows them that winning this fight is not only possible but fruitful.
Also, support and guide newbies through their journey. A small handful of people have made it this far, so your knowledge and experience will be valuable.
Fapping conditions your mind to believe you’re the victim of circumstance. It sounds like a stretch but let me explain. When you fap, you’ve given up on pursuing real sex in the moment.
And if you repeat this for months and years, you’re conditioning yourself to identify as the guy who doesn’t get what he wants in life.
This can affect other areas of your personal life. For example, when you fail at something, you’ll find an urge to blame your childhood, poor genetics, or financial situation among other things.
And while these things may be true, they’re irrelevant.
They’re simply obstacles you need to overcome if you want to be successful in life. NoFap allows you to approach life with accountability and responsibility toward the things you want.
And sometimes, it starts with something as simple as sex.
If you always push the “easy does it” button and fap whenever you have an urge, you’re relinquishing your power.
You must refuse to let external circumstances dictate your position.
A pursuit of positive change, day after day, despite the setbacks, will allow you to have what you want — with NoFap and with life.
Resources for Your Journey
Motivated to start your NoFap journey? Here are some resources that’ll get you started.