Recovered Porn Consumer, Activist, & Pornography Recovery Coach
Meet Canadian activist Sathiya. After facing his own struggle with pornography, Sathiya created DeepClean, a program build to help men experience long-term freedom from pornography through a systematic process. Sathiya talks with podcast host, Garrett Jonsson, about his own struggle with pornography, how it negatively impacted different areas of his life, and why he’s now dedicating his life to helping men find lasting recovery. You can learn more about Sathiya’s program, DeepClean, at sathiyasam.com.
FROM THIS EPISODE
- Check out Sathiya’s website
- The Feel Wheel
- Article: Study Finds Self-Identification As a Porn Addict Stem From Problematic Use Patterns, Not Morals
- Article: Watch Porn Everyday? Take this Test to Evaluate the Compulsiveness of Your Habit
- Article: Porn, Addiction, and the Brain: 3 Misunderstandings Corrected By a Neurosurgeon
- Article: Everything You Need To Know About Fortify, The Porn Addiction Recovery Platform
Garrett: What is up. My name is Garrett Johnson, and you’re listening to consider before consuming a podcast by fight the new drug fight. The new drug is a nonreligious and non legislative organization that exists to provide individuals the opportunity to make an informed decision regarding pornography, by raising awareness on its harmful effects, using only science facts and personal accounts. We want these conversations to be educational, uplifting, and hopeful. As we sit down with experts, influencers, activists, and people with personal accounts, a wide range of topics are covered that may be triggering something. Listener discretion is advised with all that being said. Let’s just jump into the conversation. We hope you enjoy this episode of consider before consuming.
We want to welcome to the podcast Sathiya. So Sathiya, welcome.
Sathiya: Thanks, Garrett. It’s great to be here.
Garrett: We’re excited to spend a little bit of time with you. Um, but we’re not with you. You’re currently in Canada.
Sathiya: Yes, sir. I live in Toronto, Canada.
Garrett: Nice. Shout out to all of our Canadian friends out in the world. Canada’s a good place. I actually rode my bicycle from Vancouver, Canada down to the bottom of Washington.
Sathiya: Oh wow. What happened when you biked across the border?
Garrett: Um, you just come up to, you know, the border patrol there and you have to go through the process as if your vehicle.
Sathiya: uh, okay.
Garrett: So yeah.
Sathiya: There you go. I learn something new.
Garrett: Are you born and raised in Canada?
Sathiya: I am born and raised. I, I, I grew up in the Western part of Canada and, but I lived in the Toronto area for about 15 years now.
Garrett: Okay, cool. Well, the reason why we want to, um, we reached out to you, Sathiya, is that we, I think you’re doing great things. And so we think that our audience will find value in your personal account, your, your experience, and also with what you’re doing to help other individuals overcome or transition their mindset back to a healthy state. So…
Sathiya: Yeah. So a little bit of background about me. I, I grew up as a pastor’s kid. Um, so, uh, so church was a pretty normal part of our life. Um, when you’re a pastor’s kid, you always kind of feel under the microscope a little bit. So I would say I grew up with a little bit of pressure, uh, but I was like, you know, I was in church. I was at a Christian school. So that was, that was my upbringing. And if you can believe it in the computer glob of my Christian school, I was 11 years old in grade seven. My buddy nudges me one day and was like, yo, check out this website. It was www._____.com innocent sounding website. So I punched it in and that was my first exposure to pornography. I don’t even know how someone got that domain and made it a porn website. Um, but it, it was super innocent.
I mean, that was like, that’s almost 20 years ago. We were talking and I was, I was 11, so that would have been 2001. And, um, and that, that began a really long journey struggled with pornography. It, it always starts as curiosity, but, um, as I kind of got into my teens, uh, it became a little bit more habitual. I was getting more curious, obviously, just with like the, the physical and physiological developments that come at that stage of life. I start to get more curious and explore quite a bit more. And I mean, by the time I was in my teens, it was just regular. It was a normal part of my day. Uh, it helped me relieve stress. Uh, it was something that I planned in my day. I looked forward to doing it. And, um, and I took that into university. I went straight to university out of high school and in university it was the same, you know, the stress, the stress was higher.
The pressure was higher in university. Uh, my goal was to become a psychiatrist. So I was in a pretty demanding academics setting and yeah, porn became an outlet for me that I, I knew was not good for me. Um, even the moral components aside, I knew it wasn’t a good thing, but, um, but it, it persisted. And I, I tried a couple of things here and there, but I wasn’t super remorseful about having the issue until I finished university and really started to think about what do I actually want to do in life thought about having a wife and kids and that kind of stuff one day. And all of those things cumulatively led me to make a decision. I need to get free. And I had no idea how to do that. And, uh, and it took me another five or six years before I really figured out what actually works and what actually brings to freedom. So it was a long journey for me.
Garrett: A couple of things, as you went to the university, you said that because increased stress levels and then also hormones, just biology is, you said too, they started to progress to a higher dependency. What year was that?
Sathiya: That would have been 2008.
Garrett: Okay. Did you notice that, uh, a player or a reason why it increased, like the frequency, was due to the cell phones? Accessibility?
Sathiya: I got my first cellphone when in 2007.
Sathiya: Um, but admittedly, it was, it was a pretty, pretty crappy phone. I don’t think I did too much on it then. Um, my phone for whatever reason actually has always, uh, more or less stayed clean from that kind of stuff. Um, my, my primary device used for when I was talking with pornography would have been my computer or laptop, that kind of thing.
Garrett: Okay. Um, well, I like that you mentioned that in your teens, it was a, a habitual thing, and then it progressed towards something else and you really haven’t mentioned what that is yet, but as you were describing, it took five or six years to become free is the way you express that. Um, can you explain a little bit more, do you feel like at that point it was a compulsive behavior, or do you feel like the dependency was, could be classified as an addiction?
Sathiya: Yeah, I don’t think I was quite at the point of an addiction. Um, compulsive behavior would probably be pretty good. I don’t think I could have gone too long without it. Um, but I did have periods as well where I, I went a month without it felt good and for whatever reason I relapsed and, um, and I was really just trying to do it all on my own. Like I was, I think I was just hoping that one day I’d make up my mind, I’d wake up and I’d be good to go and I can live my life without it. And that just wasn’t the case. So, um, so yeah, it progressed, it started habitually, but I think, um, like any habit, uh, that is, you know, driven by needs and, and really valid desires internally, um, it became a habit probably is not the right word. It was something more serious than that. Um, compulsive behavior would probably be a lot more accurate and that’s where it was at when I was in university.
Garrett: Okay. Um, if you can, how, how do you define compulsive behavior?
Sathiya: Yeah. Well, um, I mean, you start with the obvious things. Like how frequently is it a problem? Is it is a daily couple times a day, is it a couple times a week? Um, so I think the prevalence is a good place to start. And then, uh, and then usually I try to, I try to find out like, have you ever gone even a week without it, or a month without it, that sort of thing. And to me, the gaps in between are probably the best indicator of the severity of the problem. And then I’ll take it from there. If some, if someone’s actually addicted. Um, I usually won’t work with them. That’s not really the scope of my work. Uh, yeah, I’m, I’m looking more for people who are in the habitual or compulsive behavior state.
Garrett: Why is it that you only work with those that are in the stage of an unhealthy habit or compulsive behavior?
Sathiya: Well, primarily because that’s, that’s the area that I’m the best research and I have the personal experience. So I think the tools and, um, and everything that I’ve gathered and put together in my program, uh, it, it serves those people best. Um, and I think there are other people out there who are more qualified in the addiction realm have to deal with those kinds of people.
Garrett: Speaking of qualifications and your studies at the university, what did you study?
Sathiya: I studied biological sciences, I’m, I’m so grateful. I did that. Um, my, so even though my degree was in biology, my focus was on neurology, uh, neuroscience, but, um, learned tons about brain and behavior and how the brain develops. And, um, you know, if like, I think appropriate ways to change your behavior, uh, when, you know, you’re dealing with people who have problematic behavior and at the time my goal was to become a psychiatrist. I had, I lost a couple of friends to suicide when I was in high school and I had a real passion for mental health still do. Um, but that was my, my goal. And so I actually did tons of volunteering with children with autism. Uh, I worked on like mental health, phone lines, suicide lines, all that kind of stuff, and got tons of training, tons of education on how to work with people who struggle in these facets of life. Um, and then my, my program is really, um, I would consider myself a coach. So I’m a masterclass coach. Um, that’s been my, my line of training in that area.
Garrett: That’s awesome.
Um, well, we’ll link your website to this episode. So those of our listeners who want to check out your website, they can do that. That’d be awesome. Um, but going back to your experience with pornography, um, what was your, your rock bottom moment?
Sathiya: My rock bottom moment was probably my second year of university. I had just finished. Um, yeah, just finished my second year. I was kind of halfway through and I was dating a girl through most of my university career up until that point. And I found out she had cheated on me. Um, so I was pretty shocked by that. Um, the relationship ended and I realized, I, I really didn’t like my life. I didn’t like where it had gotten. Um, I was doing well in university. Like I was performing well academically, but, uh, I just felt like my life had no substance, nothing really meaningful to it. And I was stuck with this porn thing and, uh, and didn’t really know how to shake it and what to do. And, um, and that was for me where I was, I really like, uh, I got face to face with the man in the mirror, quote, unquote, and decided something’s got to give something, has to change cause, uh, life, the way it was up until that point, it was not enjoyable. It was not worth living.
Garrett: Wow. Um, from there, what did you do to address this challenge? Um,
Sathiya: Well, I, I didn’t really know what to do. Uh, one of the gods sense was, um, one of my friends reached out to me, it’s someone that I didn’t even know super well. Uh, but he reached out and said, you know, “I heard about what happened. Uh, could we grab a drink sometime? Or if you want to grab a drink some time, I’d be happy to talk about it.” And I don’t really know why I wouldn’t have been my nature at that stage of life to take him up on it, but I did. I think I was just desperate and her, and, um, and knew I needed someone to talk to. And that was the start for me. That was the start of all healing from, uh, like the ended relationship from, uh, not really enjoying my life and figuring out how, how do I find meaning in my life and substance in my life, again, uh, that friendship was a massive catalyst for me.
And, uh, this guy who reached out was, uh, incredible. Like he just, he asked great questions. He was a good listener. He, he was very contemplated and really knew how to spur on good conversation. And that’s where everything started for me. And he’s, uh, he’s still one of my best friends today. He, I told you I just got married a couple of months ago. And so he was in my wedding party and stood beside me on my big day.
Garrett: Dude, that’s cool.
Sathiya: Yeah. So it was, uh, I’ll, I’ll forever be indebted to him for the role he played in my life there. And, um, and he helped me find my faith. That was something that we shared in common. That was a big part of my recovery, for sure. And, uh, growing up in a, in a pastor’s home, you kind of, you learn all the do’s and don’ts, but you don’t necessarily learn why and some of the meaning behind those, those things. And so I was, I was rediscovering meaning in my life, in those realms and, and just finding, finding purpose for my life again. And so that, that was where everything started for me. And it progressed into, um, I did some more, um, like some more schooling, uh, although it’s more just like certifications and, um, and really start to figure out like, you know, uh, how do I actually get free of this thing? Uh, what’s actually going to help make a difference in my life.
Garrett: Going back to your low moment, did you ever think that you’d be mentoring people about the, uh, how to transition their mindset and move away from pornography?
Sathiya: [laughter] Um, most of the guys that I talked with today, even when they come to me and they’re struggling, almost every single one of them says that they’d love to help other guys get free. Um, so I, I would say I would, I was the same, that desire was definitely there, but, um, no, I didn’t, I didn’t imagine that I’d be doing it even this young.
Garrett: Um, what did you replace pornography with?
Sathiya: That’s a great question. Um, I, I don’t know if I replaced pornography with anything necessarily. Um, I think me, I, I would like in pornography viewing pornography or any kind of behavioral issue to a weed, it’s like having a weed in your garden.
And, you know, when you have
Of a weed, you could run over a weed with a lawnmower and the garden will look fine for a day or two until the weed starts to grow back. You know, we all know it all eventually come back or you can strap on your gloves, get on your knees and actually uproot that sucker and get all of it out so that it never grows back again. So I think for me, my process to gain freedom initially was a lot of lawnmower gimmicks. If I can put it that way, they were things that, that did help to a degree. It’s probably not the perfect analogy because actually some of those things were useful. Um, but the things that really made a difference in my life was when I got underneath the surface, uh, finding out why, why am I drawn to pornography in the first place? Um, and why, why is it that I can’t, I can’t get free. And in asking those deeper seated questions, that’s when I really start to get some solutions.
Garrett: And this is kind of a personal question. So just tell me if you don’t want to answer, but what was, when you were able to identify the reason why you would turn to pornography?
Sathiya: Yeah, I would say there’s probably two main things. One was, um, a couple of things that I believed about myself that really weren’t true. Uh, I would, I think most people with a pulse would be willing to admit that at some point in their life, they felt like they’re not good enough. And for me growing up with, uh, feeling pressure academically, um, feeling some pressure, even like spiritually, like I said, being a pastor’s kid, you just have these unusual pressures on yourself. Um, I think I always lived with a sense of not feeling good enough. And so porn was a way that I felt accepted. I, I did feel good enough in those moments. It sounds a little bit strange, but I think it’s because the, is that, that false, uh, connection. It gave me a sense of feeling like I was enough. And the second thing is a little bit unusual, but one of my discoveries, um, when I start to get some, some help, some professional help was that, uh, I have an amazing, uh, set of parents.
My mom and my dad are both incredible people. The nicest, kindest people. I have a great relationship with both of them today. Um, but one of the things I discovered was that my, my mom, particularly she’s a little bit more on the shy, reserved, uh, T I would say her personality a bit more timid. And so she didn’t express affection a lot when I was growing up, even though I knew she loved me, she didn’t necessarily say it a lot or, or display it a lot. So I grew up feeling neglected and I had no idea, you know, until I actually started to dig in a little bit. And I realized, actually, this, this feeling of neglect has been there for a long time. And it’s, what’s driving me to get attention, affirmation and connection from women in other places that are not necessarily that healthy pornography as being the primary outlet. So those are my two major discoveries personally, that, um, that I, that I made along the way to find. So getting freedom,
Garrett: Dude, I love your awareness, and I love your honesty. Thanks for sharing those, because I think a lot of our listeners and myself included can relate. We all have the thing that that can trigger us, but I think it’s interesting. It goes all the way back to your family life.
Sathiya: Yeah. I mean, one of the things I’m finding with the guys I work with is a lot of things do start in the home, uh, whether people realize it or not. And, um, and yeah, they’re, they’re, they’re very formative years and the way we experience affection and connection and attachment all that kind of stuff, it really matters. And porn of course, is so accessible. It’s affordable, it’s anonymous. So it’s, it’s very, um, just very, very easy to get your hands on and to get caught up in it. And we don’t realize it, but it, it could potentially be feeding some of those unmet needs, some of those places of pain or hurt that we’ve been harboring for a really long time. A lot of the guys for whatever reason that I work with, I’ve experienced divorce. And I think a lot of kids, when they go through divorce, usually one day, I always end up shouldering the blame.
Uh, that’s really common. And the second thing is usually they end up on one side of the equation, like on mom’s side or dad’s side. Um, and what it can do is it can create a lot of, um, a lot of hostility towards the other parent. And if it happens young enough, this is, and I’m talking specifically when it happens younger. Um, but you don’t end up receiving what you need from that parent, uh, whether it’s, you know, acceptance, affirmation, encouragement, um, whatever, whatever it might be that you have that need for you, don’t get it from them as a result because of the disconnection, uh, because maybe the parent in your campus telling them, uh, or is, is not letting you connect with them, that the way that you, you know, that you need to, um, those things, all factor in,
Garrett: Have you heard, I’m kind of putting you on the spot here, but have you heard of triangulation?
Sathiya: Yeah, absolutely.
Garrett: Yeah. So that’s kind of what you’re explaining, right?
Sathiya: A hundred percent. Yeah. And it, and it plays a role in the individual, like for the guys that come to me, um, because yeah, it’s, it’s left a void, it’s left them with some, some sort of emptiness. And, uh, I’m, I’m thinking of one guy in particular, when we worked with, uh, when we were going through the content and we were, we were digging into this and at some point he just, it was like, his face changed, turned bright red, and he burst into tears and he just realized he had, he was harboring all this resentment towards his mom. Uh, and, uh, and he didn’t, he didn’t even realize it, you know, but he didn’t understand how she could do what she did and so on and so forth. And so walking them through that process of identifying the hurt, processing the pain, like really properly digesting it, and then reaching a place of forgiveness was to me, that’s one of the best honors I get is being able to help guys do that. And that was our process. And, you know, it ended up being super fruitful for him as a
Garrett: Dude. I love that. I love the term that you use just barely. You said “harboring resentment.”
Garrett: I think that’s such a powerful term. And one of the things I try to live by is if you want to be happy on your death bed, the things that you, there’s three things you want to avoid, you want to avoid resentment, arrogance, and deceit. Wow. And so when you said that this individual was harboring resentment towards his mom and I, and then I look at where I don’t know where he’s at exactly today, but it sounds like he made some great improvement and was able to let go of that resentment.
Sathiya: Yeah, that was, I mean, that was the most powerful part. Like if, even if he didn’t get free of pornography, it was almost worth what he did, like just in that session. Um, but yeah, he, it was funny, the timing of it, and this might have been why it came up, but he was supposed to see his mom a week or two later. And, and, um, after we had gone through the sessions, we had walked a little bit through, I mean, you don’t, you don’t get rid of resentment in a night.
Sathiya: It does take, does take time to process and work through, but he had, he had mentioned coming back. He said, I’ve never felt that open around my mom.
Garrett: That’s a big step.
Sathiya: It’s huge. It’s everything, you know, if you think about where there’s a, we all, well, most of us would experience, you know, burn bridges or relationships that are, that are constrained or that have been, you know, just strange for whatever reason, um, to be back around somebody where you’ve had a difficult relationship and you can say, you know, my heart was more open towards them.
I mean, that’s, that’s huge.
Garrett: Right. Do you feel like, based on your observations of this individual, do you feel like he was aware of that resentment or did he burst out in tears because it was a, a new finding?
Sathiya: It was a new finding for him and he threw his tears to you. He said, I never thought this would come up in this program. Like he was, “you were supposed to get me free of pornography. Why are we talking about my mom issues?” You know? Um, but, uh, but yeah, he, he had no idea. And I think for him, he had just, it had just become very normal. Like he was, he was in a good place with his, uh, with his dad that was who he wound up living with and, um, and doing life with. And his dad was his, like his number one, fan his hero, his mentor, his everything. And, you know, his mom he was like, “mom? Yeah, she’s, she’s cool. And I see her at, um, at major family events and whatever…”, but there wasn’t much substance there. And I think it wasn’t until I asked a couple of questions and we got a little more into the heart of the matter. I think that’s when suddenly the dots connected. And I think it was overwhelming for him in the moment. And that’s why he had that one.
Garrett: That was one of his roots. Right?
Garrett: That’s cool. So going back to the, uh, going back to you, um, I asked if, what did you replace it with? And you said, “nah, that doesn’t…”, I don’t know exactly what you said. Something like that you didn’t replace it with anything necessarily?
Garrett: But what do you, what do you do today? Um, when, cause I’m assuming there’s still times when you don’t feel like you’re good enough. We all have down days.
Garrett: And I bet there are still times where the neglect that you experienced, uh, still plays a role and still affects you today
Sathiya: A hundred percent. Yep.
Garrett: So what do you turn to instead of pornography?
Sathiya: So I think you mentioned this earlier. I think the biggest thing is just being aware and understanding like, if you can, if you can say, “Oh my goodness, I’m, I’m actually feeling really neglected today.” The person who can identify that is way ahead of the game. Um, so for me that that’s been the biggest thing that I’ve tried to cultivate and even in my marriage and before I was married to my wife, when we were dating and engaged, I always tried to be super aware of the moments when I was, uh, when I was more vulnerable. And I’ll just give you an example, example, it’ll help me answer your question. I had a difficult season when we started dating or maybe like six months into the relationship and, um, I had transitioned jobs and, um, and I had moved and I was just finding it really, really hard.
And, um, and just had a lot of, a lot of difficult days, you know, I just didn’t feel like myself. I wasn’t feeling great. And there was one particular day. It was, it was date night. We were going to hang out. And I had, I had just realized that that day I was feeling super tempted to watch pornography just straight up. It had been, I don’t know, it had been maybe a couple of years at that point since I had done it, but I could feel I could. I just noticed those feelings again, coming up surfacing and my brain was going, they’re starting to make a plan about how I could watch it without anybody knowing, you know, those in some ways those neural paths are always there. And I, I could just, I noticed them coming back to the surface. Right. And so we pulled into the driveway and I just told her, “um, you know what, babe, I just need to let you know, I’m feeling super attempted today. Um, and I’ve all day, I’ve been thinking about how I’m going to watch pornography.” And so I said, just so you know, I haven’t done it, but I’ve been feeling super tempted. I want you to know. And just letting her know that from me, I took it. I took like a huge breath out. Like it felt so good to say that, um, and for her as well, she was like, “That’s no problem. Thank you so much for telling me.” like, she was really amazing about it. So, um, so I think for me, like I, I’m trying to build the habits of number one, just identifying when I’m vulnerable, when I’m a little bit weakened and more prone. And then number two, trying to talk to somebody as quickly as possible about it. And depending on what the feeling is like, if it’s, um, if it’s like I’m feeling neglected, uh, then it’s like trying to find, trying to find a buddy that I can go out for a beer with. So I get some meaningful connection. Um, if it’s not feeling good enough, then I will actually do a mental exercise where I remind myself of some of, some of my dreams in life. Some of the things I’ve accomplished, um, that sort of thing. So it kinda just depends on what, what the root of it is that’s causing that maybe that desire to surface, but, um, I’m yeah, I’m, I’m working on it for sure. But, uh, but yeah, I’m always trying to find something to nip it in the bud before it becomes too problematic, if that makes sense.
Garrett: Totally makes sense, dude, you’re a stud man. I, I, I love that. I think what you’re saying is basically you turn to awareness. Like if you, if you had a pointed to one thing, you replaced it, you replaced your impulsive behavior to turn to pornography and you replaced it with an awareness and that’s so cool.
Sathiya: I think that’s it. I think that the man who is aware of wins.
Garrett: Yeah, that’s great. One thing I wanted to ask a VA, I think you’re a good person to ask this question because of your upbringing in a religious home.
Garrett: What would you say to someone say that there’s someone that’s more pro pornography? They don’t believe that someone can have a compulsive behavior to pornography and they make the claim that the only reason why people are addicted is because of their moral beliefs.
Sathiya: Um, I do think that the research is pretty clear. It’s, uh, it’s not really an issue of morality. Um, and I think that that does come into play for some people, for sure. Um, my, my story would be an example of that, but I think even if you were to tease that part out of the equation, uh, you’re still left with a lot of research. That’s indicating this is affecting relationships. This is affecting people’s, uh, just overall behavior day to day. It’s affecting them in their careers and it’s even affecting the wiring of their brain. So, um, so I think, I think for me, I would probably turn to research and those kinds of conversations because, um, I think, I think the research indicates that it’s, it’s much more than just a moral issue.
Garrett: How long have you been mentoring people now?
Sathiya: I’ve been doing it for about three years. Um, but it, it started a long time ago to be honest. Like I remember when I was 18, 19, uh, I was staring at camps and that kind of thing about my story, uh, about China trying to discover freedom, trying to figure it out. And, um, so I would always have guys come up and ask me, like, how do you do it? And we, you know, that, that was partially how I figured out how to get free. It was just experimenting and trying different things to figure out what works and what doesn’t. Um, but this program that I’ve created, it has been around for about a year now. And, um, and that’s, uh, yeah, that’s been, it’s been the last year that I’ve been doing it more seriously.
Garrett: Um, when you say that you started a new program within the last year, that has been successful and helped a lot of people, what is different about the approach you’re taking?
Sathiya: My approach is holistic. So, um, that’s like a bit of a buzz term, but what I mean by that is to go back to my analogy. Um, I believe all behavior is rooted in, so a bad behavior would be the weed belief would be, you know, underneath the surface. And I would say that the soil soil of our lives is made up of four components, primarily the mental, emotional, relational, or social and the spiritual. And so the program I’ve created a basically pro goes on proactively pursuing health in all four of those areas. Um, and so that’s, that’s what I think makes the program a little bit different. Um, a lot of the other offerings out there focus a little bit more on the behavior and I think they’re, I think they’re amazing. Like I think there’s lots of guys doing incredible work, but my approach personally, in my own personal story of breakthrough has revolved around getting healthy in these four areas and finding ways to, like I said, I think nipping it in the bud. Uh, that would be the thing that’s coupled with awareness. Like you’re hitting on. I think if you can become really aware and learn to nip it in the bud in these four realms, I think you have a really good chance of not just being like for your pornography, but living a very fulfilling life and accomplishing your dreams.
Garrett: So I caught three of the four. You mentioned, you said the ones that I caught were mental, social and spiritual. What was the other one? Uh, emotional. Emotional. Emotional. Okay. And so when you say holistic, it’s attacking and trying to help those four areas.
Sathiya: Exactly. Yup.
Garrett: If you could give our audience. I think you’ve already talked a lot about awareness. Um, but can you give our audience a tip, those who are listening, um, on one step, maybe that first step, um, in regards to their transition of mindset.
Sathiya: Yeah. Uh, you know what, the number one tool that I teach people to do that is journaling. I think journaling is immensely powerful and I would, what I do is question-based journaling. So I think asking yourself questions, uh, like a question like, “okay, how am I feeling today?”, “Uh, what’s weighing on me. Why is it weighing on me?” getting, getting a little more granular and asking questions as you go through, I think is the best way to develop awareness. And, uh, I just finished running a group. Um, and one of the guys had said that for him, the whole thing was worth it because he learned how to journal properly. Uh, he’s never felt more aware of his, of his emotions, of his urges, of his desires. And, uh, and I think doodling has, is the number one reason that he was able to develop that.
And when I teach guys how to journal, I also give them a little tool that I call the field wheel. Uh, maybe you can even link to it in the show notes, but, um, most of the guys I’m working with with men primarily who are like 25 to 34, and admittedly, a lot of them just do not know how to attach, pardon me, attack their emotions. They don’t know how to, how to label them, how to deal with them, how to process them, how anything to do with emotions. The reason this is such a big deal, Garrett is because if you can, if you can start to really become aware of how you’re feeling, what’s going on on an internal level. I mean, yes, that is going to give you the opportunity in a weak moment to say, “Oh, I’m feeling rejected right now because it reminds me of…”, you know, such and such when I was younger that, you know, made me feel rejected or whatever.
You can identify that and say, that’s why I’m feeling tempted to look at pornography. I’m not going to though, instead, I’m going to call up my friend or I’m going to go hang out with those friends tonight or whatever it is. But the other thing that I’m observing it does in these guys who go through the program is they actually become better communicators in their romantic relationships or even in their friendships because they’re now able to articulate what’s going on inside. And when you, when you really hear someone articulate, you know, this is what I’ve been processing. This is how I’m feeling. That person becomes so much more relatable and the connection becomes stronger. And in the process of building more meaningful connection, that the appetite for things like pornography or other things that are pseudo connections or fake connections, they start to diminish. So it becomes really powerful.
Garrett: Dude. I love that.
Sathiya: Yeah, man. And I’m a big believer that like, for me, I, as much as it’s great that I have this story that I’m able to help people, my, my personal belief is everybody can be empowered and equipped to tackle this thing. And, um, and so yeah, for me, it’s all about just giving tools and techniques and, you know, those kinds of things that they can develop themselves so that they don’t need me, you know, and they don’t need, they don’t need anybody else to, to experience freedom themselves.
Garrett: That’s a great goal. Like you’re trying to drive yourself out of business. [laughter]
Sathiya: [laughter] Basically.
Garrett: One person at a time, one person at a time. That’s awesome. Um, well, I think it’s important to note and just kinda question, what would have happened, you know, the person that you met with and they were able, they were harboring resentment towards his mom.
Sathiya: Yeah. Yeah.
Garrett: I just wonder if, cause if, if a person has a dependency to pornography, like let’s use this person as an example. So anytime he’s feeling down or sad or lonely or there’s depression, their anxiety, their, um, and he was turning, let’s just, I don’t know his personal circumstance or story or, um, all of that, but let’s just assume that when that, when those emotions came, he turned to pornography because of that dependency, um, if he had never reached out to you, then it’s very possible that he never, he would have continued to Harbor that resentment throughout his entire life.
Sathiya: Yeah. That’s the scary part is, you know, when, when you think about all these, these root issues, they’re not, they’re not the things that people really want to talk about with anybody, let alone discover if they’re not aware. But yeah. I mean, I think to be free longterm, you need to, you need to be able to dig into them.
Garrett: Yeah. I think that oftentimes meeting with someone like you can be misunderstood because I think people might come in with this perception that you’re going to solve their problems and that it’s going to be a, an, um, it’s going to be an enjoyable process. I don’t know. It’s going to be easier than they might think.
Sathiya: Yeah. Like a quick fix, a quick fix.
Garrett: Yeah, like a quick fix. But I think the reality is, is kind of what you’re saying is that it can be uncomfortable because you have to pull out the root.
Garrett: It’s almost like a wound. If a wound is infected, you have to rip the wound. Like you have to put ointment on it. That’s the stings and you have to kind of clean it out, but it’s necessary.
Sathiya: Exactly. It’s the difference between a medication and a cure.
Garrett: That’s great. Well, thank you so much for all that you’re doing and thanks for spending some time with us today.
Sathiya: Garrett, it’s been a pleasure, man. Thank you so much.
Garrett: Thanks for joining us on this episode of consider before consuming. If you’d like to learn more about today’s guest and the conversation we had, you can check out the links attached to this episode. Again, big, thanks to you for listening to this conversation. As you go about your day, we invite you to increase your self awareness, look both ways, check your blind spots and consider before considering.
Fight the New Drug collaborates with a variety of qualified organizations and individuals with varying personal beliefs, affiliations, and political persuasions. As FTND is a non-religious and non-legislative organization, the personal beliefs, affiliations, and persuasions of any of our team members or of those we collaborate with do not reflect or impact the mission of Fight the New Drug.
MORE RESOURCES FROM FTND
A three-part documentary about porn’s impacts on consumers, relationships, and society.
Fifteen research-based articles detailing porns negatively impacts.
Tees to support the movement and change the conversation wherever you go.
Successfully navigate conversations about porn with your partner, child, or friend.
A database of the ever-growing body of research on the harmful effects of porn.
An interactive site with short videos highlighting porn’s proven negative effects.