One thing we’ve noticed in some people trying to get away from porn is a kind of fearful, tense, anxious mindset— a tendency to constantly be watching out for triggers and stay scared of urges.

Although this kind of vigilance is understandable, but any kind of a constant, chronic tension can be exhausting, and it may even push us right back into the problem.

What if there were a way to face and overcome pornography without so much anxiety or emotional burden? What if there were a way to approach recovery in an entirely different way?

Research has shown that “gamifying” a tough challenge can change it in surprising ways. Instead of only viewing recovery as a heavy burden, we can take a fresh view of our situation as a real-life, mysterious adventure. Rather than some boring program to “get through”, maybe we could see this as the ultimate challenge— the Quest for a Porn-free Life.

This might sound crazy— but hear us out.

1. Embrace Challenges and Quests

One unique thing about a game is that rather than getting flustered by a challenge, we embrace it. In the face of a difficult challenge we might usually avoid, the game draws us into another mindset— one where we can face the obstacle head-on.

If that sounds weird in real life, that’s because it is, at least compared to how we usually think about hard things. What if we approached our own challenges like the next intriguing level of a new video game— just another exciting quest ahead of us?

Even when things look bleak in a game, there’s always a larger vision that carries you forward, something bigger that reminds you that life’s not over and there is no reason to be hopeless when a big challenge hits us.

Instead, the difficulty of a particular day can push you forward, and make you even more determined to fight until victory is achieved.

2. Find and Battle the Bad Guys

Bad guys are really what makes a good video game— even while making the game challenging. In real life, “bad guys” may trigger urges, decrease our strength to resist or get in the way of continued growth and well-being.

One person said that every time he ate junk food, he felt vulnerable. Another admitted that when she’s physically exhausted and not sleeping well, her defenses are easily overcome. For a third individual, getting consumed in the daily news led him into a vulnerable place.

What are your bad guys? Overworking? Staying up late? Eating tons of sugar? Watching lots of TV? Reading news for too long? Too much work? Too little work? Getting angry, depressed, or anxious?

While it’s true we sometimes talk about Porn itself as the Enemy, think of these things as the minions or storm troopers that effectively drag us back into battle.

3. Collect and Activate Power-Ups

Anyone serious about beating their mortal enemy needs more than guts and courage. This means looking around for anything we can do – even and especially on our worst days.

For some, this could include getting better sleep, or having a killer meal or an uplifting conversation with a friend. For others, it could mean a bit of meditation, time in a book or praying. Still for others, engaging in one of their passions or hobbies does the trick.

Be on the look-out for power-ups in the days and months ahead. Like most games, your ultimate victory in this fight might depend on getting replenished – over and over again!

4. Find and recruit your allies

Without allies, all gamers know how crazy impossible it would be to slay the dragon or beat the end-level dude. In ‘real life,’ that is no less true, with victory often just-as-dependent on gathering around us people who understand the challenges we’re facing and “have our back.”

What do we mean by allies? These are confidantes – insiders who will assist you in this journey. Allies give you information – and power-ups. Allies rally to support you. Allies back you up.

Anyone who loves and supports you generally can be a great ally. And you can decide how much allies know. Check out the ally feature that helps facilitate communication with your allies – and provides updates so they can follow your progress and know how you’re doing.

So be on the lookout for allies right for you – people you trust to share what you need, and what would be most helpful to you, personally.

How This Can Help In Recovery

Remember, only boring and meaningless quests that are accomplished in a few days with little effort.The truly life-changing ones usually take time, and they take all you can give.

By changing your perspective and looking at recovery as the next game to be figured out and completed, you will be much better equipped to conquer the challenges involved. Setbacks will become a new level to be conquered, triggers will turn into bad guys to be taken down, and allies will turn into your trusty sidekicks, helping you every step of the way. By “gamifying” the recovery process, you can completely revolutionize your path to freedom.

So what are you waiting for? Your new high score awaits.