Do you wonder if quitting porn is possible for you? Have you tried harnessing the belief that you could, only for it to feel completely unrealistic and impossible? If you’re stuck in this state of, “Maybe it’s possible,” my guest this week is the beacon of light and possibility that you need to hear from.
Cannon Goslin is one of my clients who has been in the Overcome Pornography for Good program for the last nine months. At 23, viewing pornography is a habit he’s struggled with for close to a decade, and like you, he wasn’t sure it was something he would ever be able to leave behind. And yet, since working together, he’s completely transformed his life in more ways than just going porn-free.
Join us this week as Cannon shares the biggest transitions and most significant breakthroughs he’s experienced in the last year. He’s a shining example of how this work is about so much more than just quitting porn, and why he had to be willing to be wrong about who he is as a person and what he’s capable of.
You are listening to the Overcome Pornography for Good podcast episode 71, What’s Possible Interviews.
Welcome to the Overcome Pornography for Good podcast, the show that will teach you how to stop viewing pornography and never go back to it. If you want to learn how to train your brain out of a pornography habit, completely shame-free, then this is the show for you. I’m your host Sara Brewer, a certified life and faith-based coach.
Hey, you guys, welcome to the podcast episode this week I am so, so, oh, so excited to share what I have with you today. I have multiple interviews for you of people who have overcome pornography. There truly is nothing more powerful than listening to the stories of people who have done what you want to do.
So I'm so excited to share these experiences with you, share these interviews of members who are in the program who have quit viewing pornography, to get all of their wisdom, to get all of their hope. The purpose of this, like I want you to feel your energy rise and your belief rise as you listen to this.
Because when you listen to other people, I think I've said this before in the podcast, with some things people are really vocal about what they accomplish. Like weight loss, or if they run a marathon, or if they make a lot of money, or if they have a successful business, right? All these things people are super vocal about it like, “Yes, look at this amazing thing I've done.”
But when it comes to porn there's some stigma around it and so people aren't typically as vocal about look at this amazing thing I did, I quit viewing porn. And so because we don't hear people talking about it very often, sometimes we think either, one, not very many people struggle with this. Or number two, no one really actually quits.
But that isn't true. I want to change the narrative. Instead of it being like not very many people quit viewing porn, people struggle with this forever. No, it's normal to quit porn and it's doable. And people do it every single day. And I see that over and over and over and over again in the program. I have you guys share your wins with me and being a little bit more involved in people's lives as they join the program, like I see that. I see that and I hear story after story after story of people who quit viewing pornography.
So that's the purpose of these interviews, is to help you build belief in yourself, to see that it can be done. My favorite mantra that I would love for you to borrow, or to have because I borrowed it from someone is, if they can do it, I can too. And of course to hear these stories, to connect with them, and to see what you can learn from these stories.
You will be amazed when you hear what some of these people have gone through and the struggle that they've had with porn where they've thought “Jeez, this is something I'm going to have to struggle with forever,” to coming to a place of hope and being able to quit and seeing the amount of progress that they never thought they'd be able to see before.
Anyways, I'm not going to talk about it a lot, I'll let them speak for themselves. So enjoy these interviews. Really quickly. There will be two episodes of these, so this week and next week. And it's a little bit of a lead up to our workshop, How to Overcome Your Most Difficult Urge.
So that workshop is on June 7th. On June 7th we have a brand new workshop, it's six bucks to come and join us, learn how to overcome your most difficult urge. I talked about it in depth in last week's episode.
But the purpose of this workshop is for you to take that most difficult urge, the thing that you struggle with the most, that can be a number of things, right? Days off of work, witching hours in the middle of the night, when your spouse is out of town, after a test, with hard emotions. Maybe you have a random urge that comes up once every three weeks, maybe it's every day.
Whatever your most difficult urge is we’re to take that and workshop it and work through it. And I'm going to teach you a bunch of tools so that you can overcome this most difficult urge. I want you to get a quick win. I want you to feel empowered. I want to give you brand new ways to think about this urge and a specific applicable plan to handle this most difficult urge. And I want to do it alongside with you.
So it'll be a live workshop and then we'll also have a follow up call on the Monday following this Thursday workshop. And in these calls, you will get coaching, and help, and guidance from me and you can ask me any questions that you want. It's really one of the few opportunities that I have available at a very, very low cost or for basically free for people to come work with me in a live setting and get some individual help through a live call.
Okay, so if you're trying to quit porn you've got to be there. You can sign up at sarabrewer.com/mostdifficulturge. No spaces, no hyphens, nothing. Just the words, most difficult urge. We’ll also link it in the show notes. Okay, so go sign up for that and enjoy these interviews and drink in this success and these stories from these amazing people.
Sara: Okay, you guys, I want to introduce you to Cannon. Cannon, thank you so much for being on today.
Cannon: Thanks for having me.
Sara: Yeah. Do you want to go ahead and introduce yourself and tell us about you?
Cannon: Yeah, for sure. For sure. So my name is Cannon Goslin, I'm 23 years old. I've been in the program for probably eight or nine months now and it's honestly been one of the best decisions that I've ever made, for sure.
I think when I first started the program, I honestly, I did have a problem with pornography as well, but I think my biggest problem was just a lot of self-hatred and I would buffer all the time. And pornography, for me, it was just another one of those buffering activities.
But there were like video games, I played a lot of video games, I ate a lot of really unhealthy food. And I would just constantly do these things and I would just keep doing them and keep doing them and I would feel worse. And I was just kind of stuck in that vicious cycle.
And so I joined the program, I kind of talked with my mom about it, we discussed the price and everything and decided that it was worth the investment. And actually, initially, my story starts with this program about two and a half years ago.
When I just got off of my mission I remember that I did a little bit of a thing with Sara, I don't even know if you remember it. But it was like a special deal on the program or something and I decided not to do it at that point.
Sara: I don’t remember you.
Cannon: Yeah, I didn't think you’d remember that. But I decided not to do it then. I mean I was like right off the mission, and I didn't really feel like I was worthy, honestly. So I would definitely encourage everyone listening today to just take that step now because I wish that I'd done it earlier. I feel like I could have made so much more progress.
Now, that being said, I'm glad that I did it now. And I think, you know, as I was going through the program and just kind of trying to figure out really what it meant for me, I feel like the biggest thing that I learned was that it's okay to not be okay and it's okay to struggle.
And that was a really new idea for me for a long time because I felt like I was so much farther than where I should have been and I just kind of kept staying in that place. Once I really accepted that like you're not there right now, man, and that's okay. I feel like that's when I was able to really make progress.
And over the past eight or nine months I feel like I've been able to make so much progress because I started with kind of that mindset of, you're not there yet, but that's okay. And really, I think the biggest thing for me was transitioning from self-hatred to self-love. And that took about six months, like it wasn't an overnight thing. It took a long time.
And sometimes it does take a long time. I remember when we were first talking, and I was like, “Okay, how long is it going to take to quit porn?” And I kind of couldn't get like an exact answer because there's not an exact answer, you know, everybody's different. And I'm happy to say that for the most part, I am actually pornography free now. But that did take quite a while in my case.
Sara: I love it, thank you. That's something, a lot of people come and they're like, “Okay, but how long is this going to take me?” And I think that's one of the first things I talk about in the program, is I’m like, hey, I know you are so excited to get rid of this. But if you drop your timeline, you'll actually make quicker progress.
Cannon: Oh, for sure. And I'd actually, I'd struggled for like eight or nine years and I honestly wasn't really getting any closer. And to be almost completely free of it in less than a year is way faster than anything I can find.
Sara: That’s amazing.
Cannon: For sure.
Sara: That's amazing. So tell me a little bit about that. Like what specifics? Well, I mean, you've already talked about specific ways that you've seen yourself change. But what were some of those big breakthroughs that did finally, you know, you've been working on it eight or nine years? And yeah, it didn't happen overnight. But jeez, that's pretty, I mean, a year, that’s pretty great.
Sara: Just under a year, that's pretty great. What were some of those significant breakthroughs?
Cannon: I think for me, like the most significant breakthrough, honestly was just the way that I treated myself and the way that I was able to start to treat other people. Especially my mom, because we'd kind of gone back and forth a little bit and I wasn't as good of a person as I should have been at the time.
And when we kind of decided for me to do this, obviously she was aware of my pornography habit and everything like that. And she was really supportive. And she's like, “Look, dude, I just kind of want you to get over it and whatever you got to do, man. Like we'll get after it.”
But I think as, you know, really actually pretty quick into the program, probably like a month and a half, we were actually walking, we were on vacation one day and we were like walking on the beach together or something and she told me, she's like, “You're different. You're way different already. And I know that you haven't quit porn yet but you're just already so much happier.” And I was like, “Mom, I really am.”
And it was just so cool to see even that turnaround being so fast. And I've had many experiences like that over the past eight or nine months, where it's just little things that I realized. Like, wow, this really does work. This change really is possible. And not only is it possible, it's happening. And I really loved to see that. And honestly, for me, like, that's probably been the biggest reward of the program. Because it really wasn't about quitting porn for me.
And I know you say that all the time, like pornography is just a buffer, that's it. But it became about so much more, it became about being the man that I always wanted to be and the person that I didn't think I could be until this year. And now I finally am starting to be that person and it's super cool to see.
Sara: Yeah. Oh my gosh, yes. Yes. Thank you for saying that. What a great example. I love how you said not only is it possible, but it's happening.
Cannon: Exactly, yeah.
Sara: For those of you who are stuck there in this maybe it's possible state, what if we change that to, no, it’s happening? It's happening right now. It's happening today. Everything I'm doing is creating a porn free life and it's happening today. It's happening right now. And that doesn't mean it's overnight.
Sara: It means it's all working, it's all working.
Sara: Tell me a little bit about this person that you wanted to be and how this is about so much more than quitting porn. What does that mean to you? Who have you become? What have you been able to do?
Cannon: Well, I think, like I said, probably the single biggest thing that I'm the most proud of was transitioning from that self-hate to that self-love. And I actually did that using something that you talk about, where you talk about the model, so I use that a lot. And then I also use bridge thoughts a lot.
So I didn't start, because you can't really go from like, you say I love my body, or I hate my body to I love my body. Yeah, that's not going to probably happen, and it probably doesn't feel super genuine if you just try and switch it like that.
So for me, starting from like, I hate myself, and I really, I really did. I'm not going to lie, I had a lot of self-doubt, and I had a lot of self-esteem issues and things like that. And I would find evidence for that everywhere in my life. But once I kind of transitioned from, I just don't like myself. And that felt more genuine.
And then I kind of just kept going from, okay, I don't like myself to like, I'm okay, I'm pretty good. To like, you know, I'm awesome. And like really meaning that. And it did take a while. Like I said, it took about six months. But as I was doing that I noticed other areas of my life I started to feel more confident.
I started to feel like I could do better in other areas. I started to have a healthier body. I started to make healthier life choices. I started to be nicer to people too. I started to feel like I could do more in a career, in a profession. I ended up switching my major from communications and just kind of not really knowing what I wanted to do in school to now I’m a pre-dental student, I want to become a dentist and just kind of working on that.
And so it really was just like that one thing affected everything else in my life where I felt like I was able to, A, be nicer to people, be nicer to myself, and then just have higher goals. You know, not be just satisfied with where I'm at, but really want to be successful and want to be great. And that's something that I've always wanted but I really wasn't sure if it was realistic or if it was really possible.
And then once I kind of established that mindset of like you said, it's not as possible, it's happening, then I started to see that, and I started to have that lens. Then I saw all the ways that I was making those good decisions and that it was happening for me. And then that just kind of became that snowball effect where more and more and more good things started happening.
Sara: Yeah, I love it. Again, such a great example of what I mean when I say this is about so much more than quitting porn.
Cannon: For sure.
Sara: So much more. It reminds me, so Kat, who is a coach in the program and has some private clients, we were meeting this week and she said, “Well, I have a client and he's been doing amazing and hasn't looked at porn. And now I'm like, well, what do I do with him?” And we're like that's amazing. Now you show him what else he can do with his life. And you coach him, and you help him do whatever else it is.
He thought he joined the program to quit porn. But he’s getting like 30 times more than that because now he's creating this dream life. It’s such a cool thing.
Sara: And remind me, did you do, because you were talking about how it took a while to really embody this. And that's a challenge I think a lot of podcast listeners come up with is they're like, okay, I understand what you're saying. But like, okay, but I still hate myself, you know? Or I still have a lot of self-loathing.
Sara: And so talk to me a little bit about how you were able to overcome that. And remind me, did you do a little bit of private coaching with Tina?
Cannon: Yeah, so I did about like five or six months of private coaching. So I've loved like all parts of your program. Obviously, I have the program, I still use it pretty much every day just because there's so much good stuff in there. And at this point in my life it's pretty much just like an identity thing. It's like I’m a member of the program, I use it constantly and it helps me get where I want to go.
Cannon: And it's not really just about pornography anymore. But yeah, private coaching is great. It's a super great tool to kind of get more of that one on one experience. Because I also listen to the podcast a lot. So I'm an avid podcast listener, I've listened to almost every single episode. And the podcast is great, it is a great place to learn.
But as far as the application goes, like you were talking about, I feel like you can get a lot more of that in the program. Especially with private coaching because it really is that one on one connection and someone is there to kind of see those things that maybe you can't quite catch on your own.
And I did learn a lot from Tina and I'm super grateful that I had that opportunity. And, honestly, I'm open to doing it again at some point. I don't feel like I need it right now. But when there's some other big life change in my life, I'm totally open to going back and doing it again because I know how beneficial it is.
Sara: Yeah, very cool. I love what you say too, sometimes a coach can just help you see things that you can't. I mean, even myself, I've been doing this for a long time, and I know it really well, but I still will go and get coached because they'll see things that I can't see. Like a belief that I have that I think is just a fact.
Cannon: Of course.
Sara: It’s not really a fact, but I need someone to point that out to me.
Cannon: Oh yeah. And that is huge. No, that was a big, big change for me because I really did have kind of those facts like, oh, I struggle with porn and that's just how it is. And I think private coaching especially really kind of helped me challenge a lot of those views. Honestly, she challenged me on a lot of those views, but it helped me grow a lot.
Sara: Yeah, especially with something big where you're feeling so much self-loathing and a lot of self-hatred. That's something that you need to work through and pull apart, and pull apart, and keep pulling apart, and talk about, and address and go through. It's, you know, work.
Cannon: It takes some humility, you know? You really have to be willing to be wrong about the fact that you're not that great. You know, you have to be willing to be wrong about that.
Sara: That you're not that great? Wait, Cannon, I thought we were talking about how you are great.
Cannon: Yeah, you have to be willing to be wrong about the fact that you're not that great and that maybe you are as good as you think.
Sara: I see what you're saying, yeah. And it's so funny because when I'm coaching people, they have a really strong argument for themselves for like why they suck.
Cannon: Yeah, I know.
Sara: And I get it, right? I totally get it, I think we've all been there. But they're like, “No, you don't know me, and I have all of these reasons for why I suck.” And like are you willing to be wrong about that and be a little, I love how you put that, you have to be humble to maybe be wrong. That's such a great way to think about it. Like humble to think that you don't suck.
Cannon: Yeah, like what if you are that good, man?
Sara: Yeah, what if you are capable of what you want? I love it. Okay, so tell me how has your, life your relationships, your impact grown as a result of this work?
Cannon: Oh man, I don't even know if I can, I feel like I could be here all day trying to say that. I think the biggest thing, if I had to put it down to like one thing I’d say I feel more confident, you know? I would say that I feel more confident in just who I am. And I feel like that shows in everything that I do. I feel like with school, for example, I didn't really feel like I was a good student for a long time and so I would have that show up in my life.
But once I kind of changed my mindset and felt like I could be more confident and really put on that identity of like, no, you can be great as long as you put in the time, as long as you put in the work, then I feel like that changes your impact totally. Because I felt like I'm going into a career now that I never felt like I could do before.
Cannon: And all those people that I'm going to help down the line are a direct result of what I'm doing in this program.
Cannon: So I really feel like it's hard to say just how much this will affect your life, because it will affect it way more than you think.
Sara: Yeah, I like to think of ripples.
Cannon: Oh, it's huge, yeah.
Sara: You don't even understand how far the ripples go. That's how I like to think about, I don’t know, my podcast, for example. Like yeah, it's affecting all the listeners, but then it affects the people that they're in contact with. And then it affects more people that those people are in contact with, and it just ripples and ripples and ripples. So truly, when we heal ourselves, we really do heal the world too.
Cannon: 100%, yeah.
Sara: Awesome. And what do you think is possible for you now, as a result of you being able to quit porn?
Cannon: I got one word for you.
Cannon: Anything. Anything is possible.
Sara: I love it because did you think quitting porn was possible or did you feel pretty hopeless about it?
Cannon: I mean, I guess I thought it was possible in the sense of like other people could do it.
Cannon: I mean, I’d hear stories and I'd be like, “I don't know how he did that. But I guess.”
Cannon: As far as for me, not really. I would say definitely at least not for years and years and years of struggle. And I would definitely encourage anyone that is feeling like it's impossible that that first step really does come down to love. And just being willing to kind of—
I actually remember this super vividly, it was right before I was kind of able to quit pornography that I kind of had this view in myself of my mind is just kind of like not being vulnerable. And it was almost like I had a weapon, and I was just like using this pornography as a weapon to keep away all the good things that I wanted in my life.
And once I was just kind of willing to drop that, just drop that weapon of buffering, you know, pornography and keeping away all this good stuff, it felt really vulnerable. But that's really when I was able to kind of quit and to move on, was because I was in a place where I wasn't holding on to this anymore. And I could start moving on and doing the good things that I finally wanted to do.
And I just encourage anyone that's struggling, like it's okay. You don't have to be there today, you don't have to be there tomorrow. But as you're willing to kind of let go, you'll be able to find that you're able to fill yourself up with the things you've always wanted. And it's a beautiful process. It's painful, but it's beautiful too.
Sara: Yeah, thank you. Oh, so good. Interesting how it feels vulnerable to let it go.
Cannon: Oh yeah. Yeah, you're exposing yourself to new things and changes is difficult, you know?
Sara: Even when it's good change. Like even when it's for our highest good.
Cannon: I'd say especially when it's good change.
Sara: Yeah. Okay, yeah.
Cannon: But I just, I really wanted to be free. And I knew that freedom was expensive, but I also knew that you generally get what you pay for. And I felt like as I was kind of just putting that on and just really being willing to change, and having that humility.
And obviously, you know, I'm not totally there. Like there's still days that I struggle, there are still days that are hard for me, not just with pornography but in other things in my life. But as I've kind of really just accepted myself and accepted, honestly, for a big part of me, a big thing for me was my faith and just kind of really accepting God and everything like that. I feel like the change did happen.
Cannon: And I really like how you say that like maybe we're here on earth now to kind of experience pornography and experience these different struggles, and doubt, and things like that. And I agree 100% because if I hadn't had the experience that I had with pornography I don't feel like I'd be as compassionate as I am now. If I hadn't had those doubts, if I hadn't had those difficult moments, and if I don't continue to have those difficult moments. It's hard to be confident if you've never been challenged.
Sara: Yeah. Yeah, like that question, what is your pain making possible for your life?
Cannon: 100%, pain makes everything possible. And everybody goes through pain, but I feel like what this program does is it teaches, you know, like you talk about clean pain. It teaches you how to use your pain in a positive way and how to really become whatever you want to be.
And that's what I would encourage people today is, you know, like whatever you want, if you're patient enough, it's possible. And it can honestly happen a lot faster than you think.
Sara: Yes. Yes, that seems to be a common theme of these interviews I've been doing is like be patient. And it's okay if it doesn't happen overnight. But really looking at this long term, under a year, that's amazing. That's very quick.
Cannon: Yeah, it is. It is very quick long term. And just be consistent too. I think that was the biggest thing for me when I first started in the program. I was a little scared, you know? I would start to see the changes and I was like, “Whoa, whoa, whoa, this is bad.” But as I was just more consistent and really committed to doing it every single day, even if it was uncomfortable for me, because a lot of times it was uncomfortable. That's when I felt like I really started to see that progress.
Sara: Yeah. Nice. Love it. Thank you so much. Do you have any last insights that you would want people to know? Or any last things that we didn't cover that you want to say?
Cannon: Yeah, first of all, freaking get in the program, guys. The podcast is great, and I know that it is a little expensive and stuff, but honestly, I would pay 10 times for this program, what it costs right now.
Sara: Let me just say that's the goal. That's my goal. Truly, my goal is to make it 10 times more valuable than what people pay for it. So thank you for saying that, that's cool.
Cannon: Well, honestly, I think it's worth 100 times what people pay for it. And then just trust the process. Trust yourself, trust Sara, trust your coaches, they know what they're doing. And be excited, man. Be excited. You're here, you're changing your life. What better place is there to be?
Like, this is so cool, you're here with other people, with similar minded people that are willing to change their life, that are willing that tackle a subject that can be kind of uncomfortable sometimes. And we're all here, we're all getting better together. And I love the group atmosphere that there is.
And just be honest with yourself. Be honest about the things you struggle with, but be honest with yourself about the things you're good at too.
Cannon: And it'll happen. It'll happen.
Sara: Be humble enough to think good about yourself, right? Love it. Okay. Great. Cannon, thank you so, so much. What an example of what is possible. You are such an example of that. Thank you for sharing that with us.
I want to invite you to come and listen to my free training called How to Quit Viewing Pornography Even if You've Tried in the Past. If you like the podcast, you will love this free training. We talk about, number one, how to not rely on willpower or phone filters so that you can actually stop wanting pornography.
Number two, how to guarantee that you won't fail no matter how many times you've tried in the past. And number three, how to feel good about yourself while becoming someone who doesn't struggle with pornography. You can access this training at sarabrewer.com/masterclass.