I once ate a whole bag of chips. Also, I ate a whole tub of ice cream. It was comfort food.

Speaking of comfort, it wasn’t long ago that I was hopelessly addicted to porn. Meanwhile, this friend of mine, who I’d known since we were kids, would spend most of his time drinking bottles of beer, for that same dose of comfort. 

It’s not fair, really. First, the world gives you dreams along with giant, soaring wings to chase them. Then, it either breaks those dreams irreparably or puts them so far out of reach that your wings seem utterly useless. I mean — what are you supposed to do?

Some might say that history’s wars were fought over comfort. Avenging a dead loved one. Taking from someone who took something from you. The promise of a new world order to make up for a childhood where you had nothing. So on and so forth. Nearly all major conflicts happened because someone was looking for something to take comfort in. After a big old bunch of pain and misery. 

What is a bag of chips compared to starting a war? It’s nothing. The same goes for a tub of ice cream and a few bottles of beer. Still, at some point you have to wonder. Does comfort have to involve a damaging decision? Is causing damage (to yourself or others) the only way to have comfort? 

Today, I am in a transcendent state compared to my porn addiction days. Even so, I find myself reaching for that pack of salted almonds every other night. However, I’ve also found several healthy forms of comfort. Blasting some tunes on my headphones is one. Watching something mind-numbing on TV that’s either funny, thrilling or dramatic is another one. Does time waste count as damage? Sure, but it would have to be a lot of time that was wasted. For me, between the TV and the music, I still get a solid bout of work done every single week.

I stumbled upon the new routine as I consciously took a break from porn, and it doesn’t leave a mess that I’d spend more years (of my short life) cleaning up. So… as far as I can tell, it’s a perfectly healthy comfort routine. This got me thinking. Maybe you can find a comfort routine that isn’t damaging, too. Take a break from your usual comforts. It doesn’t have to be a clean break (my break from porn certainly wasn’t clean), but a break nonethelness. You may be surprised as to how many ways of comfort there are that do not undo health, hardwork and progress in any significant way.