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Thread: Motivation after stims

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    Motivation after stims 
    #1
    Greenlighter
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    Hi,

    I started taking speed when I was 13 and I've been doing it roughly every other day ever since. I'm now 30 and I think that I should probably try to quit. I've done most other things, mainly just acid/mdma/ket at weekends/wednesdays. But I don't think I've done anything but stimulants (and sedatives to sleep) in the last year or so.

    I've always had a bit of a stammer that comes and goes since I was very young. Being tired makes it worse and speed makes it better. (But possibly makes it worse in the long run?) Its not that bad at the moment.

    I've done pretty well but I've got quite a high pressure job. (I'm one of the senior software developers at a retailer you have probably heard of.) I've managed to do all of this on stimulants (so it's a bit scary to not have them) and my job often involves talking to lots of people and doing presentations etc.

    I tried to quit recently but I had no motivation to do anything, at all. Even things around the house. So after a few weeks I ended up getting some modafinil which kind of worked for a while but made me moody, headachy and have weird mdma style brain zaps. So now im back on speed.

    I'd like to know roughly how long it takes to become motivated without stimulants? Is there anything that I can do to help?

    I'd also like to know if other functional stims like modafinil are significantly better for you than speed? I've got a history of stroke in my family and I'm worried about my health.

    Thanks,

    Joe
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    #2
    Bluelighter
    Join Date
    May 2015
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    The time varies with the individual but good nutrition, some exercise, and a stable sleep pattern all help. If you feel the same after 6 months or so, I'd look into underlying medical issues.

    Peace&Love,
    jasper
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    #3
    Bluelighter
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    Diet is going to help a lot in your recovery. I don't mean counting calories or restricting all junk food, although some of that type of stuff might help- specifically for recovering from drug abuse what's really important is that you are getting the nutrients your body needs to rebuild and replenish things like neurotransmitters in particular. Multivitamins and specific vitamins along with diet rich in essential fatty acids is what your body needs to rebuild and replenish. For example, tyrosine is the precursor to dopamine, meaning it is what your body uses to make dopamine. Levodopa, which I believe is one step further to becoming dopamine, is what they give to people with disease like parkison because of low dopamine levels.

    Exercise is also a great way to naturally stimulate a lot of pleasurable neurotransmitters, namely endorphins and other natural chemicals similar to opioids. Exercise also raises dopamine and serotonin levels as well, so it's a good way to feel "stimulated" without taking a stimulant. 30 minutes a day of aerobic has also been shown to cause neurogenesis which is the formation of new neurons in the brain- potentially "reversing" some of the damage that may have been caused by drug use.

    Personally, I tend to stay away from caffeine and other legal stimulants. I have an anxious depressive personaliy, so when I get anxious I handle it by shutting down. It's not a bad idea to let go of as many responsibilities as you can without allowing your life to fall apart, and avoiding stress as much as reasonably possible. A lot of stress that can be avoided is self-induced by our own thinking and self-talk. Don't beat yourself up if all you can get motivated to do is to go for a walk around the block. Take baby steps, go one day at a time. You are competing with no one but the person you were yesterday. DId one lap around the block yesterday? Do 2 today, and so on. Build slow, set realistic and achievable goals. then once you start to rebuild your self-esteem and start to find your own internal motivation you can start taking bigger steps and challenging yourself more and more.


    Recovery is a long process, some say life-long. In the beginning, it may not seem like much is getting done but just working on the way you think, feel and respond to those thoughts and feelings is work and progress. Don't over-do it... slow and steady win the recovery race.
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    #4
    Bluelighter
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    i may be completely wrong here so would appreciate it if someone who knows what they're talking about could let me know.

    i think cos speed works on dopamine, that your reward system might be fried. your reward is speed, so why do anything else? my guess is you need a few weeks abstinence + general holistic healthy living for your motivation to return.

    i'm transferring that from my own experience and plenty of others' becoming completely joyless when they stopped using crack. when was the last time you laughed not on drugs? for me laughter and joy just weren't physically possible for a few weeks. i was (still am) in rehab when i stopped so lack of motivation wasn't an issue, everything was done for me. can you take any time out? the good news is that though it takes a long time to recover your fried neurotransmitters, the awful initial period only lasts a few weeks. though i'm assuming speed works the same as crack.

    i was doing very technical programming work till i lost me job so i do understand how compelling it is, i got badly into stimulants when i couldn't work properly cos of post viral fatigue, so i know how alluring they are and how much they 'help' that kind of work.
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    #5
    Bluelighter
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    You're spot on chinup. Basically whatever DOC you will have reverse effects when stopping. Anxiety meds give you increased anxiety when stopping, pain killers make you more sensitive to pain, stimulants make you less sensitive to natural stimuli, and so on.

    Part of it is just a matter of time, allowing time for your body/brain to heal and ensuring it has the nutrients to do so. The harder part is then not only facing whatever it was driving you to drug us(whether a way to cope with trauma or boredom,etc), then finding healthy ways to stimulate yourself and brain naturally. THings like exercise, reading, and art are really good ways to stimulate the dopamine pathway naturally.

    The hardest part tho is probably making it over the hump of feeling like shit, having no motivation, and getting little stimulation from natural exercises due to the desensitization drug use causes. It's one of those times when you really have to trust in the process. I try to tell myself it daily. When I don't feel like practicing music I try to trust in the process of discipline, practice, and hard work. Eventually I know it will pay off and lead to much more rewarding times when playing what I once struggled with ease.

    The analogy holds true for lifting weights or even dealing with social situations. You say you have no motivation, so doing an intense 1-2hr work out 5-7 days a week is probably not the best goal to set for yourself.. kinda setting yourself up for failure. Instead, shoot for a mild 20 minute workout 4-5 days a week. Once you have that down, now go for 30 minute workout 5-7 days a week, then 45-60 minutes 5-7 days. And it can be easy work outs/exercises at first, in fact it's probably best to start out easy. Then once you have the habit down of working ut 5-7 days for 45=60 minutes, now focus on increasing the intensity of your work out. Then start focusing on diet, stretching, and so on.

    It doesn't have to be lifting weights or music either. They are just two analogies that work for me, and are basically how I dealt with little to no motivation after quitting drugs. I honestly don't think people should hit the ground running and try to go back to normal life. A year or two to focus on one's own recovery is highly beneficial imo. Nothing wrong with working a part time job, working on yourself and making sure you are prepared and sur about the next step and stage in life.
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    #6
    Bluelighter Rio Fantastic's Avatar
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    Excellent advice, Mafioso. I would echo everything he said, OP - exercise & diet is key. I will add a couple of things. Firstly, in my personal recovery, just as if not more important than diet & exercise has been meditation. Even five minutes a day will soon start benefiting your life, and that's not a giant time investment and it doesn't take lots of effort, just discipline. I can practically guarantee for a couple of days you will wonder why the fuck you are even bothering with it, but then you will notice a tranquility and clarity when you've meditated, which soon starts bleeding into daily life. It's also IMO the most effective tool in dealing with cravings - if you spend some time every day practicing dismissing thoughts and shifting your focus, this will naturally carry over when you have to deal with using thoughts.

    Finally I'd just add that sitting around doing nothing waiting for amphetamine-esque motivation to strike you naturally probably won't work. You in all likelihood will never get the lightning bolt of happiness & motivation that fixes all your problems. What you need is the discipline to start making baby steps. Commit to something small and then build momentum. You will have to force yourself and it will suck, but it will get easier & easier until it's second nature and your feelings about whether you want to accomplish what you planned will become irrelevant, because you will have built the discipline to do it regardless of how you feel.

    Priority number one should be stopping taking the stuff, completely. Sleep it off for a day or so, and then force yourself to do something simple like take a walk round the block, eat some fruit, meditate for five minutes. It will be difficult & seem pointless at first, but this is the way forward and the only way to get your life back where you want it to be.
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    #7
    Bluelighter
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    Yes, yes, yes, and yes. All good advice above.

    Peace&Love,
    jasper
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