Husband Material

From Rock Bottom To Recovery Coach (with George Morning)

August 07, 2023 Drew Boa
From Rock Bottom To Recovery Coach (with George Morning)
Husband Material
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Husband Material
From Rock Bottom To Recovery Coach (with George Morning)
Aug 07, 2023
Drew Boa

In this episode, you'll hear the inspiring story of George Morning ("Coach G"). We talk about the challenges faced by black men and men of color in outgrowing porn—and how societal pressures, misconceptions, and the normalization of addiction intensify these challenges. Coach G highlights the importance of finding relatable support and the power of positive internal dialogue.

George Morning (Coach G) is a Certified Addiction Recovery Coach. After 30+ years as an addict and losing family, finances, and faith, Coach G sought recovery in 2013 with The Mindful Habit. Since then, Coach G has helped thousands of men and women overcome their addictions, create healthier relationships, and live passionate lives.

Check out Coach G's book: HabitLand (this is a paid link)

Email: habitlandcoach@gmail.com

Website: beyondhabitland.com

Take the Husband Material Journey...

Thanks for listening!


Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

In this episode, you'll hear the inspiring story of George Morning ("Coach G"). We talk about the challenges faced by black men and men of color in outgrowing porn—and how societal pressures, misconceptions, and the normalization of addiction intensify these challenges. Coach G highlights the importance of finding relatable support and the power of positive internal dialogue.

George Morning (Coach G) is a Certified Addiction Recovery Coach. After 30+ years as an addict and losing family, finances, and faith, Coach G sought recovery in 2013 with The Mindful Habit. Since then, Coach G has helped thousands of men and women overcome their addictions, create healthier relationships, and live passionate lives.

Check out Coach G's book: HabitLand (this is a paid link)

Email: habitlandcoach@gmail.com

Website: beyondhabitland.com

Take the Husband Material Journey...

Thanks for listening!


Speaker 1:

Welcome to the Husband Material podcast, where we help Christian men outgrow porn. Why? So you can change your brain, heal your heart and save your relationship. My name is Drew Boa and I'm here to show you how let's go. Today I am hanging out with Coach G, also known as George Morning, founder of Habitland Coaching and author of Habitland. Welcome to Husband Material, Coach G.

Speaker 2:

Drew, thank you for having me here. Man Truly appreciate it. Man Truly appreciate it.

Speaker 1:

You're welcome. What do people need to know about you?

Speaker 2:

Well, that's an open-ended question, right there. Important parts about me, I guess, is that number one I am in recovery. I'm just kind of concerned as audience in recovery from sex and porn addiction, alcoholism, drug addiction, so you name it. I pretty much kind of checked the list, you know, going across it, man, but right now, you know, with so many labels, I think we can probably put it in us. I mean, I'm a dad, of course, I'm a dog dad too. I got three women here right now.

Speaker 2:

But you know, ultimately, you know, I think, in the shortest way of just, you know, hey, what do we need to know about me? Is that you know. One, I've probably been in a worse space than most others, which I used to begrudgingly be like, okay, that was just for me, but no, I love it because it gave me such a great experience to be able to help people prayerfully before they ever get to any space that I've been. And two, I just want to be transparent. You know, to the best of my ability, you know, I mean, I tell people often, you know, when I talk to my clients and they're always saying I want to get to where you are and I'm like, I promise you. I'm only like one or two foothills on the same side of the mountain, like I just left where you was and I'm able to tell you hey, that's by right there, secure, you can go.

Speaker 2:

There.

Speaker 2:

Looks a little shaky, it looks a little scary, but ultimately I'm still in the same process and I think that's one of the great things about recovery is that you never get to the quote unquote summit, because it's a lifelong thing.

Speaker 2:

You know, and that was an important concept that I had to really identify with. It wasn't a one and done kind of deal and be like all right, cool, you pluck that area out and now you can move on with life. It never works out quite like that. So you know, I think that's the best piece for me because it keeps me a perpetual individual that has to always be in the pursuit of progress. You know, there is no area, as much as I've wanted in the past, where it was like okay, you can stop, you can rest here right now. So I think that probably just sum it up best man is that you know I'm doing the same climb a lot of my clients to do, a lot of men that are going to hear this to do one, and that allows me to continue. Just be in progress here.

Speaker 1:

Absolutely, no matter how much freedom and healing we've gained. It's so important to not get complacent, because as soon as we get passive and start drifting, then we're in the danger zone.

Speaker 2:

Absolutely, absolutely. I've unfortunately had a fortunately and unfortunately had to see that a couple of different ways. You know my own recovery journey.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, so I want to celebrate everybody listening to this, because you are deciding to continue in your recovery and healing just by listening to this podcast. So absolutely Way to go. George, what is your story?

Speaker 2:

Number one. I'm a third generation addict, which means that I have seen this iteration. What does it look like? A couple of different ways. Before I even started, and for most people like I, can envision a person that will look at addiction and say that's what I want to be. I was a guy that was sending my dad pamphlets on quit smoking, quit drinking. Doing this, doing that, I grew up thinking that I will, you know, be a great person by not doing the things that I saw, you know, from my dad or from my grandpa. And I looked up and I realized that, wow, I made it look different, but I'm exactly the same. Exactly the same, you know, and that was a big crux for me, man, I remember back in as early as I'm 44 right now today, but I remember in 1987.

Speaker 2:

That was the first time I've ever had prescription medication given to me. You know, my mom was like hey, here's your medicine. I got to go to work, one every three to four hours and I was like in that moment I remember it clicking that. I was like this controls pain. I was like this controls pain. And then, in 1989, I remember my dad. He came home with a video. The video said command though. So keep in mind I'm dating myself, this is 1989. I am thinking Arnold Schwarzenegger command, though it's what's going to be on this video. And I popped this video in and it is not there. There is no wartime issue, there's no harm. And immediately I wasn't even really corrected, I was just kind of ostracized. It was like what are you doing? And then go to bed and in that moment again I recognized it was like, okay, I don't know exactly what I just saw, but it is something that you know either a I can have, but not right now, or only can have a certain times, you know.

Speaker 2:

And that continued, you know, for a while, group in a single parent household. For the better part, parents were together when I first, you know, was born, but then they eventually ended up getting a divorce and the same as my mom, and I just remember going, you know, even coming into having my first child, that I was like I'm going to be so much different, I'm going to be so much different than my dad, right, and no, that didn't happen. And I remember thinking it for my second child with my first wife, and I was like this is what will be the change right here the change and nope, that didn't happen. And then I have my daughter and at that point I was like, okay, this is where this is all I ever wanted. My baby girl like this is perfect. I'm going to change my whole life right now because of her. And that never happened.

Speaker 2:

Man, you know I had to keep going into my rock bottom and you know I think back and it's like. You know I remember when my ex wife left with my two youngest kids, as hurtful and as upset and every other emotion I had I probably would have just been enabled had they stayed any longer. You know, I had to kind of get to my own space of rock bottom which, believe me, I didn't want to go to. Like I said, I grow with my dad. I saw him go through recovery. I saw was parts of that was like and I was like that is not anything I want to endure or go through.

Speaker 2:

And I never forget, you know, just an aspect in a sense, trying to keep the peace, I went to about three different therapists and each of them I had a script that I could give them because I knew we would get me out of the session, and each of them I would ask the exact same thing. I said how long did it take for your wife to give you for cheating and to how long did it take you to stop watching? And all three of them said I don't got an answer for you doing that because I've never done it. I've never had an affair with my wife, I've never watched any porn, so I can't do it. But I can tell you with this in my mind, I just tuned them out at that point in time, because here I am for this and we'll probably talk about this a little bit later this particular area.

Speaker 2:

I was just talking to a group of guys the other day that I worked with and I was like I would have probably dealt with being a crack addict more than being a porn addict, because it would have been a lot more commonplace. You know, like my dad was on crack cocaine and he was still somehow successful in his line of work, but to be able to tell a complete stranger, let alone my friends, and disclose to them that no, I got a porn problem. No, I got a porn and sex problem. The one part about this area I think for a lot of us is that anybody could hear alcoholism and not think all we wanted to do was have a drink. They could hear a drug addict and not be like what. All he wants to do was just be hot. They would point out so many other factors that go into this, like high stress, environment at work.

Speaker 2:

You got a poor social group that you hang around with. You talk about porn and sex addiction. Well, it's like, oh no, you wanted to do that. That's exactly what you wanted to do. You wanted to stay up X amount of hours and not come to the bedroom with your wife looking at porn. You wanted to see somebody else. You know and I grew up in a space where a lot of this was just very commonplace man I realized that as much as it looked like the normal thing, that wasn't something I wanted to be my normal. And then the good part about God is that once you start putting things out to him, particularly the good things, he starts shifting things. But it's never gonna shift how you wanted to shift, like all I wanted him to do was just answer one of those prayers when I was on bended knee and wearing holes in a wooden floor trying to pray this away. I just wanted to wake up and be like this should be gone right now. This should be gone right now.

Speaker 2:

So, as I said before, I went to my rock bottom in 2013. Coincidentally, that was my Jesus year, turn 33. And I was like this is where something miraculous is gonna happen. And I found myself homeless, suffered a stroke and single, like wife gone. I am so stereotypical. I was me and my oldest son and my dog. I have to go live back in my mother's house right now. And I was like wow, this is not the process I wanted here, but the good part about that is that that helped me bring me a lot closer. It was the area that I never wanted to confront in my life, but it helped me bring me a lot closer to exactly who it is I'm supposed to be.

Speaker 2:

If you will, I think that's one of the great parts about this process of recovery is that you at least get a target. Like it sucks how we get the target of where we gotta work, but at least we get a target. Like I talked about guys all the time, I said I will pick working with an addict over a regular person all day long. Why? Because the addict knows a target. Like hey, coach, I need to stop acting out the corner, I need to be more fit and that's a target.

Speaker 2:

Now, what we learn in that journey and we unpack that is we realize that, okay, you're not running around with your brother's thoughts all day. One day you really got a lot of self doubt thoughts. You got a lot of self deprecating thoughts, maybe some self entitlement thoughts that are happening. You got some experiences that you've encountered as well, that all parts of you haven't been able to really rationalize and heal from, and it helps to be able to say, okay, hey, let's start here in getting into this process.

Speaker 2:

I've probably seen the biggest impact in my recovery happen than just being a dad. You know it'd be great to say, hey, look, I'm helping all these other men, which it is great to be able to say, but who I get to be as the dad is a tremendous piece, you know, of that being a lot more present in that area, man, present in my relationships right now, and it really helps to kind of just. You know, one of the things about recovery is that it just kills so much fear that you can have about pursuing certain things. So, yeah, that's pretty much my story in a nutshell, man, I've been dealing with this since you know, we're at 23 right now, so I said since 87.

Speaker 2:

So about what? 26 years? Good, 25, 26 years of my life. You know, I've been dealing with this. I could probably say for a good 30 plus years of my life. I've been trying to also manage areas of trauma and everything else that goes along with it. So you know, that gives a little bit of a snippet as to you know, or a good snippet as to what got me to this place here.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, it's inspiring and you're not only continuing to heal, you're also helping others, and I first encountered you on a podcast episode called Five Reasons why Black Men Don't Get Treatment for Sex Addiction, which was a great episode, and I was wondering if you might be able to talk about that. Why is it sometimes hard for black men or other men of color to get help?

Speaker 2:

Absolutely, man. You know there's a couple of big reasons there, Of course. You know I'll say five there, but I know in a more direct way, for me, number one it was just, it was the thing that is both normalized, desensitized and promoted. You know, actually within our communities, when you look at our music style of dress, it's like doesn't really matter, like it's exuded in some fashion. I mean heck, even when it came to porn, we're a whole dag on genre of porn, like that is what it. Like it's a whole porn of just, you know, interracial porn, black on black porn, man being a porn. Like you look and it's all there. And when you grow up like that and you come across it, well, it becomes almost this right of passage that I would say that occurs with it. You know, like I remember so clearly, you know, growing up and I was like the only thing I don't want to be is a crackhead, like that's embarrassing, that is what that's a crackhead. But porn addiction, porn addiction, mental health, those are areas that we say no, that's stuff that only white people deal with. Like we lump that into. Like parachuting out of a plane and white water rafting, like no, there's no way. Who does that? What same person does that? And what real black men is going to sit up here with their woman? You got a beautiful woman here and you're going to choose a computer or real woman.

Speaker 2:

I remember you with my peers, you know, the first time I told somebody about this my best friend, best friend, and it was. It was the snicker, and then it was followed by so does that mean you don't like women? And I was like, how do we jump to that part right there? It has nothing to do with me whether or not I like women, like you know what I mean. I have three beautiful kids. I've been married. You've seen me in I don't know how many different relationships right now, but it became. That's what it was, though you know, and I never forget you.

Speaker 2:

Growing up, right before I got married, I didn't know a lot of people who were actually married and I could identify with that. I had one person I went to high school with that was married at the time, and I remember even talking with him and thankfully, prayerfully, he's not the same person that I met, you know, then and had a conversation with, but even he was saying look man, I'm just gonna let you know right now it's gonna be crazy at home. Just get you a little something on the side. It's about when you need to come home. Listen to it, you'll be good to go. And I was like, okay, I don't even know how this is supposed to work, but okay, and I wanna follow so many other directions, and I think that, for me, was one of the separating parts of it. You know, I just didn't want that as my normal anymore, you know, and I didn't want to be in the space of this.

Speaker 2:

Next avenue that we're talking about here is what I think is a distinguishing piece about why black men don't seek recovery in porn. Is that part of the model, part of the script that we're given is one you work twice as hard to get to the same exact place. And if you're working twice as hard to get to the same exact place, well then you don't got time to deal with stuff Like there is no boohoo, because you grew up a certain way. You and your friends grew up right there beside you. They're fine, malcolm, you're fine. Your cousin's had it worse. You know you should be happy considering everything that you was afforded here right now. Right, and then even looking in the areas of mental health. You know those are.

Speaker 2:

Things were commonplace when you said that, hey, we're not gonna deal with mental health and, overall, I think, just healthcare. I'm glad I'm starting to finally see it take a shift just within communities of color, because for the longest time we avoided it. You know we hear how the mistreatment is, how a lot of just even foundational testing was done on people of color. So again, part of that script that we're given says you don't need to talk to nobody else about your stuff. You can deal with it, you'll figure it out. It's just life, it's not that bad. My dad was famous for telling me that he was like it's not that bad. I'm like you don't understand the like.

Speaker 1:

No, it is it is, it is.

Speaker 2:

I understand now. He was speaking more through a lens of recovery, you know, rather than the lens of the addict, of the divorce man and the whole nine. It was more from the lens, but I wasn't in recovery so I didn't get it. All I'm getting is that he's telling me all these issues I got are small issues and you're gonna get over it and get past it. I'm like you don't understand right now, like we're trying to hold on to this. I'm losing this right now.

Speaker 2:

And we have this consumption with roles in keeping up with the Joneses, if you will. You know, I think there are so many labels that we inherently begin to seek out and most of those labels have nothing to do with us on an emotional level. Like it's the we wanna be the great dad, the good husband, we wanna be the college graduate, we wanna be the first in the family to do A, b and C. We wanna be financially stable. We wanna have all these great accolades, you know, that go into this space and we don't realize what that means for us emotionally and we never take the time to sit back and say, okay, am I healthy emotionally right now? Like I got this, I got this, I got this. You know why else would somebody else, you know, sacrifice marriage, children, lifestyle, stability, career, you know the whole nine. If that was addressed, there's no reason we wouldn't even go that route. So we got this whole idea of Monica, of keeping up with the Jones and work twice as hard to get to the same place. And you know we don't discuss our mental health issues, you know, with anybody. And of course this is kind of like, you know, porn and sex. You know that doesn't even affect that. How can that be an issue for people of color? Right? We don't consider these factors a lot or better. Yet we've, just as I said before, been given a script that deals with it. Like it is what it is, like we've been. That's part of the communication we get. You know, consciously and subconsciously, I'm grateful for this new generation.

Speaker 2:

I hear a lot of people. They complain about it, like, oh my God, they got way too much freedom and they're allowed to be this and they're allowed to be this at this age. And I'm like, listen, that's a heck of a lot better than what we had, because it wasn't allowed to be anything but the child. Here's your time to be the student as a child, here's your chance to be the son slash daughter. And being a child, here's your time to aspire or actually have fun and be a kid. As a child Like, it's always, always kind of broken up for us and it was never a point in time when somebody was able to say, particularly to me, even with therapy, it was never about hey, what's happening with George?

Speaker 2:

It was George, your grades dropped. What do we got to do to fix your grades? You know what I mean. It was George, what are you trying to be when you grow up with? You can't be that if you want to do this. So we got to convince, you know, not convince me, to get you to start thinking more like this.

Speaker 2:

And you know, for the again man, when I was growing up for the longest and I finally looked up and I said I got all the labels Like I was married, I had three kids, I was working a decent job, we had put a roof over our heads, I was the provider, I was the protector, which in hindsight, is funny because in my height of addiction I was probably soaking wet like 125, 130 pounds, thinking that I was like the protector of my home. But you know all those pieces. You know, they were always all present for me, but I still kept asking out, I still kept searching for this other space, no matter how much I did not want to be a part of this other space, you know, like I recognize the ramifications of it, the dangers of it. I'm like, why am I still coming here? This woman that I married, that gave birth to my children, who's beautiful, is telling me hey, if you don't change, we're going to leave. What logical person doesn't make the change Right? And that's when you realized, at least for me. I was like wow, this is a heck of a lot deeper than common sense. Like this isn't about willpower completely this isn't about common sense right now. This isn't about trying to check boxes. There's just some things about this that I don't really fully understand. You know, coming into it, and I have to be funny that I think that's a very scary place for men of color, for people of color.

Speaker 2:

Like we try to live to the best of our ability our life completely under control. You know, we want to control our environment, our circumstances, our finances, our communities, our families, ideologies, all these things that either pass down to us or we hold on to. We pull from it and say, okay, this is exactly who I am. Almost at a young age, Like by the age of seven, they're able to say hey, look, I am a Christian or Baptist ball player who goes to this school, who'll be this whenever he grows up, and the whole not like. I remember when I told my parents I was going to be a lawyer, my grandpa bless his soul, he didn't even let that go on his death bed. He was like when are you going back to? When are you going to go to law school? And I was like that's not my direction anymore. It's not my direction anymore. I'm not doing this. Oh man, you should have went to law school. You should have did that.

Speaker 2:

People today will talk to me how come you're not in the pool pit Like you're, like your mom, you know she's a reverend, my grandfather's the bishop and it is them understanding that. Wait a minute, okay, my pool pit just looks a little bit different, like I don't know. My pool pit isn't inside of a church. My pool pit happens right here on Zoom. It happens in conversations like this. It happens in me meeting you wanna one with my clients, me doing group calls. It happens in me being able to express probably the most transparent parts of me, you know, in a book or in a video call or anything along those lines. So you know that's been what the journey, at least for me, looks like.

Speaker 2:

You know, I can say it in a nutshell that, even if you say this out loud we talked about this before all these areas that I'm mentioning I truly believe on some level that still impacts pretty much everybody, though you know, like I don't know too many men that would say, hey, look, you know, because I work with a lot of executives, I work with a lot of doctors, I work with people who are entrepreneurs, like you are living, quote unquote. Well, it should be the best iteration of life right now. How do we get to this point, like, how are we still here? And you know, across the board, you know, we ended up realizing that, okay, all I really did was that I kept pursuing the next label, the next role, and I never dealt with the actual person, like I never had a chance to figure out exactly who I am and what fits that and what makes that best work going forward. You know, and that's part of this beautiful process and opportunity we have here with Recovery man, and is that you get to start peeling back some layers that you never thought was going to get peeled back. You know, and believe it or not, it's been a very unifying process. You know, like it's interesting, like even kind of doubling back to what you were talking about.

Speaker 2:

You know, with Black, while we don't seek help, when we think about people of color who have actually stated this is my issue. Well then, particularly with Black people, we got I think it's Terry Crews, kirk Franklin, chris Rock. There's a female actress that came out maybe a couple years ago, jada Pinkett, as discussed in Addiction Two, pornography. But the reality is, what do they all have? And they all have a fluency, they all have certain resources, right, none of them came out and was like no, you don't understand. Before I blew up, this is how this was destroying my life right now. They'll talk about it from the current place, right now and where they are.

Speaker 2:

And again, for most people of color, particularly for me, that was one of my hallmark excuses. I was like, look, you ain't broke. Like me, this is all I got. Like you can go out here and buy the new car or go fly off to an island that doesn't have internet access or anything along those lines, like that's all I ever wanted to do. It's like I don't gotta be one island that internet does not work on right now. If I can get my family there, I'm gonna save this deal, I promise you I'm gonna. I just gotta make enough money first. So, of course, the addiction can't be dealt with right now because I gotta make some more money, because the money gives me to, and it's just this whole hamster wheel that we throw ourselves in just because of the imagery again that we keep seeing that we somehow have to aspire to.

Speaker 2:

Like I was really thinking that the only two ways people go into recovery is if you're completely busted and disgusted, like homeless level broke and okay, fine, you got to go that route. Or you've acquired so much in your life that if you took 30, 60, 90 days out of it, nobody misses a beat. And that's all I could really remember thinking. Every time I would go into therapy or pursue it, I was like, do I got the time for this right now? Like that's gonna take away from this and that's gonna be an additional resource is gonna get taken away as well. And let me you know what's more important right now and what came down to that.

Speaker 2:

It was more important to do that piece that I mentioned as well, where we'd like to kind of keep up with the Joneses. I would have much. Rather I wanted to be the beautiful family at church, like we look great. I promise you, drew, if I had some pictures right now to show you, brother, there's been a single family that looked better at church than my family. I mean, son is dressed, son is dressed, cute little baby girl walking and smiling. I got the biblical history. My mom's a Reverend, grandpa's a Bishop. So I'm able to chime in, I can communicate, I'm sharing at the men's ministries the whole nine and you know I never forget when she had left. That's what really kind of that was one of the biggest pushes.

Speaker 2:

With that I realized that wait a minute, a lot of people left. You know, like I was trying to keep up with y'all, but the moment things kind of fell out from underneath of me I was like, wow, okay, so maybe we weren't friends, maybe he was friends. This is a couple relationship. That's here because the couple's not present anymore. Did my wife talk to your wife about my behavior? Cause that's all there was to view that, as you know, particularly within the church.

Speaker 2:

You know, and I even go a bit further, I would like to say it's even more distinction wise in the black church. You know, and from a lot of other people I've worked with, when we look at church that are primarily white, you may not receive the help you want, but at least it's quiet, nobody talks about it. Your name doesn't get thrown around as much because the pastor doesn't want to have to deal with that kind of stuff. The priest won't have to come back and revisit these issues here. So, listen, we're just gonna pray for you right now on this. But you know, you two keep coming to church, keep coming to church, keep coming to church. Black church is, oh no, that information got out Like it got out like.

Speaker 2:

I remember so clearly the angst and anger I would see from other women in the church. I've noticed immediately how the I was ostracized, but other men in the church and I was like, ah, so I don't even kind of I'm gonna download a little bit of a rabbit hole there. I'm coming from your question, man, but you know those again, I think, some of the pieces that separate us, and why? Not necessarily separate us, but why we don't always seek recovery specifically in the areas of porn and sex addiction. You know mental health right now. We're pursuing that a heck of a lot more right now but when we look at these types of addictions you know porn addiction, sex addiction and being able to come to a place of rationalizing that and where it fits in your life and what it looks like I think that's a space that we're still fighting right now.

Speaker 1:

I agree and I see in my mystery and in many other porn recovery ministries it's often the case that only one guy in the group will not be white. What was it like for you to actually enter recovery and join a program like this?

Speaker 2:

The biggest thing for me, I'll be honest. I got to a space where I didn't care about color. I just needed to know you went through what I went through, like that's what I needed to see. It's like going to the gym like nobody walks up and if you're listening and this happens to be you, forgive me ahead of time but nobody walks into the gym and walks into the fattest guy in the gym and say show me how to get that. That's not how it works. Right, we go in the gym and even if you two shot, and even if you two shot and ask somebody, you're looking at what somebody else does that has a mirror of the physique that's in your head for you and you're looking at it. You could go in there and have a complete workout plan. But if you walk in that gym and you see somebody doing a different workout but they got the body you want, you'll switch it up. You're gonna be like, okay, I'm gonna do that today or I'm gonna incorporate that the next time I come in here, because if he's killing it like that and he looks like that, okay, whatever he's doing I wanna be able to do. And that's where the mindful habit came into play. I never get to.

Speaker 2:

First time I had a conversation I was like, wow, really Okay. So let me get this straight. You dealt with drugs. Check. Marriage on the rocks. Check you got kids too. Awesome, okay, check. You either get fired or demoted at your job. Oh, all right, we're swinging about in a thousand right now. Oh, and it's not just the porn. You also had the whole little training hookup porn star that you had to decide that nobody wants to discuss or admit about right now. I was like, okay, thank you, I'm glad somebody is checking the boxes for me right now and everywhere of these thoughts and actions and how I'm being gone, and that's what was important for me. I just need to know somebody who's been through this.

Speaker 1:

I hear you saying you wanted someone who has been where you are and also where you wanna go, that results mattered more than any kind of certification or qualification. You wanted somebody who's done it.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, no, you hit that right on the head, man Like I got that and believe it or not, I'm kind of thankful that that happened because here's the reality of it. When we look at any avenue of recovery, particularly here in the United States, none of it was really started by somebody who never did it. Like some of the greatest substance abuse counselors that are out. There are people who are in recovery from substance abuse and that's because recovery dealing with addiction and recovery they take on a lot of different faces, but ultimately the work for it is pretty much the same to a good degree across the board and what we get out of it is something that is greater than where we've ever been. And you need somebody that's actually just saying look, I have actually been where you are, or worse. And here I end up getting to you right now and I tell guys all the time that the process may look different for each person, which is fine, everybody's an individual but we're all entitled to the same results of recovery. Like there isn't no miraculous, miracle story here that goes into recovery. I tell them all the time say, listen, you can have exactly what you want. It just may not look like how you want it to look Like there was nothing more.

Speaker 2:

I wanted when I first went through this process was to save my marriage, being the same household with my children, rebuild my career and be able to move on with my life. Now, the reality of it is that what I was really saying at that point in time, without knowing it, was that I want to have a healthy relationship for once. That's what I really want. I want a healthy relationship with another person where I don't have to hide and I could be transparent, and I want to be a great dad, like I want to be a healthier dad, you know. On top of that, my kids. I want them to actually have a better, healthy environment. So, am I with my ex wife? No, I am not, but am I healthier? Yeah, is she healthier? Yeah, does that translate to our children being healthier? Absolutely, absolutely. You know.

Speaker 2:

So it takes time to be able to understand that bit of mystery, you know, within recovery, but the reality of it is that, no, whatever you want you can have.

Speaker 2:

I would almost I'll give you like a 99.9% guarantee for anybody. The only issue, though, is going to be the two pieces in our own brain that prevent that, which is the image of it, and then the time that we assess to it. Like we do that subconsciously without even knowing it. If I told somebody, hey, let's go grab a bite to eat immediately, you're going to envision food and you're going to think about it being at a certain time. If I show up an hour earlier, you're going to say I wasn't expecting for another hour, like your mind would tell you that and I'll take you to go eat at a vegan restaurant and you're like, wait, like everything is going to be exactly as it is I was supposed to be. It just may not match some of these descriptors we're placing around. That you know for us. So you know, I think that kind of brings in together a couple of those points, particularly just looking at the impact for, you know, african-americans or people of color coming into recovery.

Speaker 1:

That freedom is real, healing is possible. There is so much hope, and it's probably not going to look the way you expect or as soon as we want.

Speaker 2:

And again, when we're always predicated on control. That's a difficult thing, you know. I think that's definitely an issue for a lot more than just people of color. You know most I haven't come across the man that does not want to have some measure of physical control over how their life is going to look.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, and underneath the need for control is fear, and underneath that fear is feeling unsafe.

Speaker 2:

I'm so glad you would have it down like that, because that's really what it's about, you know. And again, the safety. And I've even been discussing with men because they always not always, but most men struggle with the concept of safety because we speak about it very physically and I don't care what size you are, I haven't found the guy yet. That's going to be like yeah, I know I get bullied today as a grown man right now, even if it happens, you're not going to say it out loud, like the concept, how we talk about safety. You know, I just got to tell you I was 125 pounds, soaking wet, at the height of my addiction, thinking that I would take on any intruder that walked into my home Not the real case here. Emotional safety, though that's really what this all stems down to. A lot, you know. Emotional safety, finally understanding what healthy relationships actually are Right, we understanding our own emotional health and how important that actually is. You know we talked earlier about one of the good opportunities about recovery is that we get the target. So myself, probably you men listening to this call right now, they're thinking the target is okay, I got to stop backing out and I got to save my family and on top of that, I can't lose my job. But I don't want to give up any control. But I'm tired of being up in the night wondering if I want to get found out or when I'm going to get caught or shoot a guy caught. What part do I say? Don't say all of that is about control. It's a control piece that goes into that. But the reality of behind all of that as well is that it's an emotional level. We're trying to reach this physical control but emotionally we're not the healthy ones and we keep putting that part to the side, you know, and it looks different for all of us, which is fine, like I've had guys that have been everywhere, from having envisioned the most horrific abuse growing up, to the guy that simply stubbed his toe when he was maybe four and his dad said shut up, men, don't cry about stuff like that. So you learn at age four I can't ever cry, I can't ever be this part of me right now that is a healthy part of us right now, you know, and it kicks us into a space of survival mode.

Speaker 2:

You know, I think the hardest lesson for a lot of men in recovery to understand is that you actually needed it. Like, believe it or not, you probably needed the addiction. I tell my guys all the time on the call I'm glad you had an addiction. You probably dead right now if you didn't have an addiction. Like, you didn't have some way to not feel what you was feeling emotionally, you didn't have any outlet for it. It's no guarantee that you would have went into therapy or you would have went and dealt with all these other emotional issues because you chose to not act out via sex, porn, alcohol, drugs, anything along those lines.

Speaker 2:

Most people who deal with those issues and they don't deal with the compulsive behavior, those are the ones that end up committing suicide. They're like I'm checking out, I'm done here, so you know the addiction we go through. It's a hard road of recovery. I'll never sugarcoat that.

Speaker 2:

But the demonizing of it in its totality is the part that I have to help Men be like no, believe it or not, that party is gonna give us great information. That party is not a light switch and we wanna flip this bad boy off and you're gonna go on with the rest of your life. Like that party is gonna give you some information. Like it's the reason that part of you exists, you know, and being able to tap into that helps us to understand what that emotional health is really gonna look like, emotional safety needs to look like for you. So you go on and on just in that area there, man, but it's one of the most empowering things I think that men do get in the process of recovery is being able to say, okay, so I'm not the nasty guy that I think I am, but there is some other stuff here underneath the hood that I got to really unpack and I gotta take a deep dive in, as you would say.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, and I hear you saying that we sometimes over fixate on the behavior when God is inviting us to something so much deeper, emotionally.

Speaker 2:

No, absolutely, man. I mean, I used to only pray for that. All I wanna do is again, when you just wake up and either A you take this out of me or B you just get rid of every attractive image that would ever be like. I wanted to walk outside and somehow there was never a person that would run in a sports bra and tights. They all wore a nun's outfit. I was like come on, god, you can do this. It's like whole countries that are dressed like this. God, like you can do that here.

Speaker 2:

I'm not asking a lot out of this process right now, god, you can. And I gotta tell you, man, even in perspective of just faith, I never stopped believing in God, but I did stop believing for a period in time that he was still going to bless me. Because of this, you know and I remember very clearly, I went through the program I'm not acting out anymore and I remember being like, if you're kinda done blessing me, I get it, I get it. I mean you gave me I don't know how many vehicles all those are gone. You gave me I don't know how many roofs off my head all those are gone. You've blessed me with beautiful people, women, to bring into my life that were vessels for my children, but also where I was able to receive this wonderful feeling of love and appreciation and value. And now they're gone and I said, yeah, I've kinda chalked up a lot. That's what I can believe, it or not.

Speaker 2:

That was my one pinnance coming into being a recovery coach, and it wasn't like to get something. I was like, let me just at least give something. Like I don't know why what I say tends to connect sometimes, but if I don't grow in any other area of my life, like if my money doesn't grow, my lifestyle doesn't change, my body doesn't change. At least I can know that. Okay, I helped somebody else to not get into this space, and that's why I say there's a very, a huge difference between sobriety and recovery, and most people who are what I call hitting that wall right now and they're in their own journey they're hitting that sobriety wall, because the sobriety wall simply says stop doing, number one the behavior. But it also tells you at the same time now you need to just do for everybody else. Like those would be the guys that more often than I want to see relapsing pretty soon, you know, and.

Speaker 2:

But that's where I was, though, you know, in the in relapses. Look, the interesting part about addiction is that relapses look different Time in time. Again, I never forget them, like I'm done with this whole sex and porn thing. And Because I was now single, I Was like it's no problem for me to go to the bar a couple nights a week. Now I'm hanging out with the fellas right now and I'm single, like it's okay, I'm okay, space Pepper in right now, and then alcohol pops up, and then it's, you know, smoking, marijuana and all these other avenues keep materializing around me, and but I never looked at I said it because I'm not doing that Right, and I didn't realize that all I was doing actually just jumping from. I still had an impact enough of me emotionally, because that part of me was still there and they said, okay, cool, you're gonna take that away from me. So I'm gonna have that for other men listening right now.

Speaker 2:

It may not even be anything that I've mentioned. It could be you now. You're just extra quick to anger. It could be you turn in, you know, tap it into an emotional part of you right now, where you know we tend to justify it, and it's like, look, I'm not doing this anymore, honey, and I ain't doing this anymore, honey. So why are you on my back so much all the time, and now you want to, why I'm so quick and prone to anger right now? So you know those. Those just some of the paths, man, that that we I think we all experienced, you know, to a degree, within this recovery journey here.

Speaker 1:

Yes, and if you didn't catch this, everybody, if you want to be sexually healthy and mature, focus on becoming emotionally healthy and mature and you'll get both.

Speaker 2:

Once you prioritize you, you realize there are multiple layers of you Like it's one of the wildest things. You think it's just about the addiction. So I'm gonna prioritize this area of my life with this addiction. But now I also realize that I kind of talk like crap to myself most of the day, like I wasn't even aware of how often I said I suck, I'm a loser, I'm a failure, I'm never gonna make this happen. Never gonna make this happen. I doubted any measure success coming. I went through all the motions. I Was great at following the scripts, but this internal dialogue that that that took place here, it's like once you stop the behavior, that voice just grew ten times louder and it was like wait, where's all this coming from? What we were going over there? It was over here.

Speaker 2:

All those self-doubt pieces you got you're too small, you're too skinny, you're not athletic enough for this. You know all these other areas. Like you know, those are always big things to me, believe it or not, like pretty much everybody's. My family's athletic Heck. My son he is six foot three, about 240 pounds can walk in any gym in the planet Without doing anything and just squat 500 and bench 300. My dad, same exact way and I'm looking like I don't know if this is gonna date me, but there's a movie I'll call the twins, with Arnold Schwarzenegger and Danny DeVito and All the squires. They got all the good stuff and Danny Vita was left with all the crap. And I'm looking at everybody like is that what this is for me? I got left with the crap part of this deal right now. But I have my addictions. I had them and they knew how to temper that part of me.

Speaker 2:

Once they started going away, those voices just got so much louder like wait, this is how I really talked to myself. This is what I'm really saying to myself right now, like these are the thoughts that I'm not somebody is telling me. It's what I'm telling myself. And and is it with more men I work with? That's probably been the bigger impact. They get to learn they will.

Speaker 2:

They can start off by saying that no, you don't understand, coach, I got the demands of my job, the demands of my wife. What do you hear after you hear their demands? That's what I want. That's the biggest question. So when you go home, she says hey, look, we don't got enough food here. We need to go shopping. Or we missing this here or we're running behind on this bill. What's the next voice you hear? And that's when they'll say I hear, I'm not good enough. Okay, did she say you're not good enough? No, she didn't, but I heard it. I heard it exactly.

Speaker 2:

That's our own internal dialogue that we end up having. You know, and, like I said, I think we're going to be able to get through this and, like I said, the layers that we get a chance to unpack in ourselves. And you learn that if in prioritizing me, I Got a lot of layers here and then people get it, and then just for the some of the guys who might be listening, prioritizing you because this came on a call that I had Prioritizing you doesn't mean you shut the rest of the world off, like some people are. Like how can I prioritize me when I'm married with kids? I got a job, I'm trying to do this, I'm trying to do that. I never said you had to go and become reclusive hermit to prioritize you.

Speaker 2:

It actually starts while I was being able to put pen to paper and Understand what are the parts of me. We rarely have an opportunity to be able to do that and we saw prioritize, prioritizing ourselves in that area. Well then we realize that, okay, to tend to this part of me does not take all day. It really doesn't like when I started part of it. Okay, it's my fate. I am not on mending me all day.

Speaker 2:

One day I got a set time I'm able to get up, reena can't. On top of that, I learned how to experience him in multiple ways. So it doesn't have to be in the structured setting, whether it's church for some people or, you know, absolutely big. This day, right now, I got the Bible lap my phone. Pretty sure everybody has a Bible lap of some version on their phone. They try to stick with that, but I'll be honest with it anytime when I can. Just I'm. It's a growth when you're able to just be outside with your dogs and you're like, huh, I Could be upset. I got to pick up all of this dog do do right now. But God, it's pretty amazing how you got me here with these dogs when I've been evicted and I'm a lot. I've actually have lost my dog before Like I've experienced that that somebody come and taking my dogs away. Here I am right now. I get to take them out and follow behind them To pick up like that is a spiritual encounter for me. That is a spiritual encounter for me.

Speaker 1:

Coach G what is your favorite thing about freedom from porn?

Speaker 2:

So number one for me to just realize that the difference in sobriety and recovery are so vastly different. And when I really adopted the lifestyle change not just the getting rid of, but the lifestyle change and then the second part about this for me, in terms of the best pieces for me in recovery, it's just I literally am excited now for the next indicator that I get of the layer I got to peel back. So when it happens, it's not like, oh my god, I'm still screwed up and I'm still messed up. No, I'm a human being, unfallible. My name is George, not Jesus. It starts the same a little bit. You got a little juggler, the e-sound there. I know I guess confused, and I get it. I get it. I get it, but I am far from perfect. That is not me at all. I make mistakes. I'm still figuring this thing out right now. But now it's not the dang it, george, you did it again. You just grew up and all the other thoughts. Now it's huh, okay. So now we got to get through that part, to move this needle ahead a bit more here. You know, getting back to that nonlinear results that come out of recovery now is actually exciting. It's exciting like you get to the point of life where you look at that guy in the gym I use gym now these locks but you see that guy in the gym and you now know the difference of what of him getting that extra five pounds for his personal record is now you just saw those God bench in 300 pounds and in our heads we're like why is he so excited about 305? It's 300, 305 until you're under the weight and Then you move. It is one thing to know what you can move and then to work towards something you cannot move and then you move. That Like that's what recovery really is about. Is you get to go to a new space. Your PR in recovery, well, I'll do every single mr Olympian on Swanson better and every other bodybuilder weight. Look who doesn't broke all these right, I don't. You should not be worried about squatting 500 to a thousand pounds. Be worried about saying, okay, can I get back about, can I get through the next five layers? That's that's gonna come to me right now. You'll be significantly stronger than him if you do that. Just exciting for now. It trust me.

Speaker 2:

It's not beautiful all the time like it's a beautiful day outside. I think that all the time, like they give a great image about recovery online. Like you Google recovery and you see like people holding hands, trees, sunset, beautiful image, birds chirping and everything, and it's like, oh my god, is that the life of what happened? Recovery for a season, maybe Problem of the household is gonna look like during that same season, you know, and but that's part of it, though. So it's not always gonna be a sunshine pack, but I promise you and everybody else, if you stick with it, the life you're going to have in it Will dwarf any life you have outside of it. Man.

Speaker 1:

Thank you so much, george.

Speaker 2:

No, brother. Thank you, man. I truly appreciate this opportunity. Brother truly appreciated it awesome.

Speaker 1:

Well, if you want to connect with coach G, go down to the links in the show notes and you can find his book, his website, his contact information and and always remember you are God's beloved son in you. He is well pleased.

Coach G's Story
Why is it sometimes difficult for men of color to get help?
Excuses and obstacles to overcome
Emotional maturity and mental health

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