Porn And Problem Solving

It has been a busy time for me recently.  My site is a little closer to completion so I have been able to add a few articles but I am struggling to find good graphics to add to the work.  I know I need to add graphics.  There are far too many words on wordsbykim and In My Own Words, the attached blog, so I need to add some pictures.

In between searching for good pictures, writing articles and blog entries and actually doing my job a lot of other stuff has been happening.

I have been attending training sessions, delivering training on behalf of my employer as well as undergoing my annual performance review and considering other jobs that have come up.

On top of all that Christmas is coming, I just became an aunt again, my daughter had a birthday and my son will be having his birthday soon too so life has been pretty busy.

I have, however, found time to manufacture more drama for myself – sigh.

It’s those blasted stats again.  Most people don’t talk about their stats for some reason but I find them fascinating.  They tell me how many people come here, what pages they look at, what search engine they came from, what search term they used and even what country they came from.  I look at the search terms to get ideas about what to write for the site and for the blog.

At first I trusted my stats completely despite knowing I shouldn’t.  As someone once said, there are three kinds of lies – lies, damned lies and statistics!

I have discovered my statistics cannot be trusted at all.  People may not even live in the country my stats tell me they come from.  People can doctor or hide pretty much everything and cause my stats to be wrong.

Now, according to my stats, porn sites are sending me visitors!

I hate porn with a passion.  Porn encourages people to use other people.  I have been used and watching people use each other doesn’t turn me on one little bit but I won’t get on my soap box about the issue right now.  Suffice it to say I went into major battle mode at the mere mention of a porn site in my stats!

My first instinct was to stop them sending me visitors but a quick check of the referring site showed me there was no link to me.  Someone had just made it look like there was.

I automatically jumped to the conclusion someone did that because they don’t like me and they wanted to offend me.  That made me want to ban them from coming here and I was just a heartbeat away from leaping into a war I could not possibly win!

It was time to use the good old problem solving techniques and sort this out.

Step One – Define the problem.

You can’t deal with a problem until you know precisely what the problem is.  I had to sit down and ask myself exactly what my problem was.  It may seem easy but it wasn’t.  Here is how my internal conversation went.  Yes – I talk to myself.  I answer myself too!

Me:    “What’s the problem?”

Myself:    “I’m angry.”

Me:    “Why?”

Myself:    “Porn!  The dirt of an ugly industry has touched my site and, through it, me!”

Me:    “Some people might say you are over reacting – are you?”

Myself:    “Probably.”

Me:    “Why?”

Myself:    “Porn!  I hate that industry!  I do not look at porn, I do not read porn, I do not want porn in my life in any way, shape, or form!”

Me:    “OK so you hate porn.  You are entitled to hate it but this is no big deal if you think about it.  It seems like you are making a lot of fuss over a very small thing so what’s the real problem here?”

Myself:    “You’re right.  The world is full of porn – it isn’t the porn that has made me so angry.  It’s the fact that someone has ignored my right to stay away from porn and forced me to look at pornographic words.  Someone has tricked me into going to a pornographic site where pornographic pictures were shown to me against my will.”

Me:    “Now we are getting to the heart of the matter – you feel like someone has made a victim of you again – right?”

Myself:    “Right!  I feel like a victim!”

Now I knew what the problem really was.  It was not the porn itself that bothered me – it was being forced to think about porn against my will that was the problem.  It felt like I was being abused – again!

Once I knew what the real problem was it was time to move on to step two and think about how to solve the problem.

Step Two – Brainstorm possible solutions.

OK so what are all the ways I could solve this problem?  I had to set my mind free to think of any possible way to solve the problem.  At this step it doesn’t matter how way out, impossible or wild the idea, I wrote them all down.

My possible solutions included banning the referrer, banning the IP address, searching the internet for ways to prevent such people from coming to my site, shutting down the site, never looking at the stats again, writing an entry to try and get the person or people to stop doing that stuff and more.

Once I had a list of possible solutions to the problem it was time to move on to step three and check each solution for how realistic, how do-able, it was.

Step Three – Check options against reality.

Some things I won’t do.  I won’t shut down the site because someone doesn’t like me so I crossed that option off.

Some things I can’t do.  I can’t make anyone else do what I want them to.  Even if I was able to write something persuasive enough to stop one person it would only backfire.  I’d get a bunch of other people doing the same thing in hopes I would write an entry just for them too.

There is no way for me to control everything that happens on my site.  People can type in offensive searches and fake finding my site through them and there is nothing I can do to stop them.  People can fake referrals to me from any site they care to invent.  I don’t know how they can do it but they can.  People can fake everything to the point where I can wind up running around in ever decreasing circles trying to stop them but all that will happen is I will disappear up my own bum!

I know for a fact I can’t control what other people do so I crossed off every option that had that as a prerequisite.

I don’t fight wars I know I can’t win so that left me with only one option – change ME!

It is always possible to change myself so that was a reasonable choice and a realistic one to make.  I picked that solution to the problem.

That took me to the next step of working out how to put the solution into practise.

Step Four – Decide how to use the solution.

I had chosen to change me and/or my behaviour to solve the problem of feeling like a victim when someone confronted me with porn in my stats but how would I do that?  What did I need to change?

The first thing that needed to change was the behaviour that allowed someone to send me to a porn site against my will.  To stop that from happening I need to stop clicking on the links without even looking at them.  I listed that as the first change I had to make.

The second thing I needed to change was the thinking that makes me feel like a victim.

I’ve seen many things in my life that I would prefer not to have seen.  The news shows me things I don’t want to see all the time!  Hundreds of thousands of people all over the world love porn and that makes it something I can’t realistically expect to never have to see again in my lifetime.

I have to let go of my unrealistic expectation that, because I hate porn, I should never be forced to acknowledge it’s existence or have anything to do with it.  It, like abuse, is out there and, like abuse, it is going to touch my life now and then no matter what I do to avoid it.

I can’t stop porn from existing but I can stop it from upsetting me so much.  I can disconnect the button inside me that makes me feel like a victim when someone shoves porn in front of me.

It is not what happens to me, it is not what is done to me that makes me angry, it is what I think, how I feel, and how I react to those things that makes me angry.

Porn exists.  Porn is about using people to satisfy lust.  Porn uses children too.

I am no longer a child.  I can say no to being used to satisfy lust.  I can reject porn and keep it out of my life as much as is realistically possible.  The porn that ignores my wishes and presents itself to me without my permission can be pushed away.  I can change the channel, turn off the DVD, close the book and pass over the stats referral – push it out of my life as fast as it comes in and refuse to let it upset me.

I am only a victim if I believe I am a victim.

So far so good.  Now I move on to the next step.

Step Five – Try out the solution.

The log showed three or four porn referrals this morning.  I was able to detach myself enough that I don’t even remember the pornographic titles at all or how many there were but it was a struggle because there were so many.

That took me to the next step.

Step Six – Revise and fine tune the solution (Discard and try another solution if it doesn’t work at all).

I noticed there were more porn referrals in the log than in the referrals themselves.  I have now refined my solution.  I will do as my brother does and cease paying such close attention to the comings and goings on my site.

All I really need to take notice of is how many people come, what pages are the most popular and search terms.  I don’t really need to even look at who the referral site is.

So now I move back to step five and try out the refined solution.  If that works for me the problem is solved.  If not I will move to step six again and try to refine the solution a bit more or select a new solution if necessary.

Problem solving is a handy little life skill to have.  I wish I had known about it many years ago but it’s never too late to learn.

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