How to manage overstimulation in the modern age

January 7, 2019 - 9 minutes read

How to manage overstimulation in the modern age

With such an exciting array of technologies now at people’s fingertips, we run the risk of constant overstimulation.

While this is often the advice given by psychologists regarding substance abuse, it applies equally to anything that triggers the reward circuits in the brain.

This can be directly damaging to your dating life and your social engagement in general.

Manage your exposure to temporary buzzes of dopamine to gain access to a higher and more enduring reward.

What are the dangers?

Whether it’s porn, gaming, gambling, or substances, constant overstimulation forms the building blocks of addiction.

Not every instance of going onto a porn or gambling site will kick-start a spiral that rivals heroin addiction. However, spending too much time mindlessly triggering the dopamine centres of your brain will start to require more and more triggers to reach the same high. You will likely get drawn into a repetitive cycle.

A range of studies on taking an excess of drugs that stimulate and increase the sensitivity of your dopamine receptors in the brain, such as MDMA, showed that you end up developing a higher tolerance the more you take.

Nothing moderates overstimulating activities anymore. I’ll take porn as an example because access to porn has become insanely, dangerously easy in recent years.

You are never more than two clicks away from finding any video for any taste without even paying. So the only judge of the amount of time you spend looking at porn is you.

However, as with any addictive behaviour, the reward centre in your brain tells you it’s an activity that makes you feel good. This increases the likelihood you’ll go back to porn for the same feeling.

The substance/reward cycle becomes a loop that drains your masculine energy. If you can get a sexual kick from going to a porn site, why bother getting better at picking up women?

It’s not just porn. Even scrolling through social media or getting a large number of likes on a Facebook status or tweet gives you a dopamine release. Some people spend hours mindlessly scrolling and wasting time that they could be funnelling into becoming better.

Netflix bingeing works the same way. There are so many shows and such an emphasis on getting through boxsets in one sitting that days can pass before a person realises that they had things to do. The same goes for addictive games, such as Fortnite.

Junk food or sweets might taste good at first, but if you only eat crap, it will lead to serious health issues. The same goes for junk experience.

The problem is that we have so many different types of stimulation hitting us at once that it can be hard to know how to stop it. It all feels good. But it is subtracting from our lives.

Spending your time wisely

In the world of dating and self-improvement, overstimulation becomes a real problem. It can be so easy to optimistically flick through pictures on Tinder or other dating apps and wait for the dopamine rush as someone swipes on you to create a match.

However, this distracts from the process of stepping up your game and meeting women in bars and clubs. You may miss meeting your ideal woman because you didn’t develop the skills to talk to her without setting up the interaction online.

You need to steer clear of repeatedly getting quick rushes of gratification and focus instead on long-term development.

Stop conditioning yourself for higher reward with an overemphasis on porn, dating apps, and swingers’ sites.  This is fake experience and artificial stimulation.

Everything is okay in moderation, but you have to manage your intake. Stop disrupting your life and growth.

Tips for reducing overstimulation

The 21st century is a barrage of cues to poke at our pleasure receptors and distract our attention from what is truly important – becoming the best versions of ourselves.

Therefore, following these tips could help you filter out some of these distractions and focus on self-development, including:

  • Set a timetable: Balance is crucial, and having a rigorous schedule can help instil the discipline needed to achieve proper moderation throughout your life. Eat at specific times, put aside 2 hours for exercise and 1 hour for reading, and have a designated hour for chilling out.
  • Filter the internet: Block porn from your life. You don’t need it. It’s a massive waste of masculine energy and sets an entirely false image of how sex works. Put a child filter on if you have to, and get someone else to change the password. Remove the stimulus, and you won’t miss it.
  • Restrict app usage: Most phones allow the user to set time limits for specific apps. Don’t block social media outright, primarily if you use it for business. However, set yourself an hour at most so that you’re not idly thumbing through your news feeds. If you run a more extensive or more successful business, pay someone to take social media off your hands and manage it for you. This will allow you to focus on more pressing matters.
  • Charge your phone in another room: Your phone screen should not be the last thing you see before you sleep or the first thing you see in the morning. Buy an alarm clock if you usually need your phone to wake you up, and charge your phone in another room away from your direct line of sight.
  • Read more and watch less: It’s easier said than done, but reading 50 pages of a book can nourish you so much more than spending the same amount of time watching a couple of episodes of a TV show. Get into non-fiction and learn about real life. We all enjoy a good story, but avoid subscribing to a TV service that thrives on draining your time. TV shows are structured to leave you wanting more, and it’s called a “Netflix binge” for a reason.
  • Meditation: Anything that forces you to concentrate on just being rather than doing or consuming is healthy. Meditation may take the form of exercise, yoga, spirituality, or mindfulness, but make sure you spend at least half an hour today detached from distracting thoughts and stimuli.

The best way to put a stop to overstimulation is wanting to be better. A strong enough urge to improve yourself will mean that you filter out distractions with a view to attaining self-realisation.

If you’re serious about improving every aspect of your life game, get in touch at www.johnnycassell.com/pua-training.