Tips on Quitting

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tosha
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Tips on Quitting

Welcome New Members!

I just wanted to write a post on how I quit my compulsive playing of Everquest. I hope that you can find one or two tips in here to help you along the way. And if any member has any other idea of how to quit, please feel free to add your comments to this thread.

First of all I want to preface this by saying that you can't do this without first having a WANT to quit. After you have admitted to yourself that you do indeed have a problem, then you need to tell yourself that you want to quit. The time frame between admitting that you have a problem to wanting to quit can be a short time as in quitting cold turkey one night, or a long time as in my case a couple of months of continued realization of what I was doing to myself.

If you are just admitting to yourself that you have a problem but dont quite have the desire to quit, that is fine! You are not weak, it is normal to feel this way.

When I first woke up and realized that I was not in control of my life, it was a scary feeling to be honest. My first reaction was to hide myself back in the land of Norrath, which is what I did. But little by little the disgust I had with myself and the frustration with the game itself led me to taking the step of actually ending my EQ life and restarting my Real Life.

So following are a few of the tips that I followed during this transition.

1. Start a journal. Write down your feelings about the game, the people in the game, how you feel when you play the game vs when you are not playing the game. It doesn't have to be just about the game, it can be what is happening or what has happened to you in your life that you need to resolve in your mind. The few mins a day that it takes to write these feelings down will be amazing to you. The first day that I opened my journal I sat there thinking where do I start, but I just started writing and I couldnt stop for almost an hour and several pages later. Of course every day does not take an hour, but just 10 - 15 mins. Recently I decided to go back and read what I had wrote back in May when I quit and wow what a revelation it was to me. I didnt know that I had come so far in my thinking about myself, EQ, and life in general.

2. If you are still playing the game, just be aware of what you are doing while playing. Are you really having fun? Is it more work than fun? Do you find yourself logging off in a ****ed-off mood most nights? Then ask yourself is this really what I want for my life?

3. Write down your goals in life. This can be done in your journal also. And don't say that you don't have goals, because I know everybody does, you just have to reach down and remember them. Do you want to finish school (H.S. or College)? Do you want to get married or have a better marriage? Do you want a family or be a better parent to the children you have? What about that career is it what you wanted when you first started it? Can you better it somehow? After you have done this ask yourself is my game playing getting in the way of these goals?

4. Write down 20 things you love to do (thanks Morf for that idea) BESIDES play the game or anything game related. What did you do before you played the game? Do you like to read, figure out how things work, play with your children, play a sport, go to a movie, spend time with your friends who don't play or the family that you haven't seen for a while. Whatever it is write those down. Then you have a list of activities to do besides play EQ.

5. Pick one night a week where you will NOT play EQ and keep to it. I don't care if the guild has decided to go on a raid for the last item of your epic or what, you will NOT log on that night. Instead you will do one or more of the activities on your list above. After a couple of weeks, step it up to 2 nights, 3 nights, etc. It is of my opinion that one needs to detox themselves from EQ because of the immersive aspects of the game.

6. Continue coming to this site for the needed support and encouragement. Update us on how you are doing, we are here for you and interested only in seeing you recover. If you need to talk to somebody on the phone call the number that is listed on the OLGA webpage. If Liz doesn't answer leave a message. If you want to talk to me, I can be reached through Liz. I am very willing to talk on the phone and lend my support.

I hope this helps and again please members who have gone through the process of quitting, please feel free to add your own ideas.

Tosha
 

JharenCorellen
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Re: Tips on Quitting

At Tosha's request, here's my post for those out there who just might need a little outside help:Quote:If you feel that you can't just keep away so much that you *know* you will fall back you could always try calling up a friend who knows a bit about computers, and have them put a password on your pc so you can't install ANY new software.
Or you could have them remove your modem, and then every time you almost walk into the computer store, just remember the last time someone said to you "I miss you"
In other words, do whatever it takes to make your life what you want.
The only thing worse than not being happy is knowing you have only yourself to blame.
Also, if you know someone who knows a good bit about computers, you could get them to write a program into your registry perhaps that just makes the computer auto-close windows after about 15-30 minutes if you have long distance friends / family whom you regularly contact through emails... I know you can still EQ in that period of time but it would be danged frustrating! (got this idea from back in high school.... the teacher wasn't impressed with our work lol)

Adrienna Levesque
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Re: Tips on Quitting

I would also, like to add a few words, if I may

I realized that I was seriously in trouble when I was staying up until 2-3am, playing.

Those of you that know me, know that I am a nurse and a student-this takes up much, much time. I also have a beautiful toddler and a husband (active, active gamer).

I started staying up late, because those late hours were the only times I had "to myself" and I wanted "to have some fun."

At first, it was no issue, but as I neared 53 with my druid, I realized something had to give. To make matters worse at the time, my father in law was dying. He had advanced COPD and oftentimes, had acute episodes of respiratory dysfunction and obscenely low Pulse Ox scores.

What added to this was the fact that my husband woked long days, the days I had off from work and school, so he was rarely home. I was left to do the "duties" of caring for my in laws (whom I adore) because my husband was often not available, and my brother in law.. well he is one of those guys..well lets jut suffice to say that he was not honest nor dependable, and in fact lived with my in laws, rent free, and ran up several thousands in bills in their name...

But I digress. It started to take a huge toll on me. My own mom and dad were divorcing; they lived in separate towns and I oftentimes had to juggle holidays so that no fights would ensue (Heh, you think: good luck, Adrie). I was tired of being the dependable one, the responsible one--all the joy I had besides my beautiful daughter was work. And I cried all the time. I ended up in the hospital, for sure I was dying of a heart attack.

Those late nights caught up with me. I started to resent the pixels that became my life, and slowly, I started to do other things--like sleep, for one. I realized I was what I hated most: hypocritical. I was a nurse, who treated her own health very poorly. Its very true what they say about nurses being horrible patients!!

Well now, what was I to do? We have three, count em, THREE computers networked together in the "computer den." We often didnt have a viable babysitter (oh, did I mention that my mother in law also was told that she had a very good chance of having a diagnosis of MS????) so what could we go, during the cold fall to winter nights?

The transition was not too hard for me. I started to do what I used to adore doing: learning. School had become a chore, full of politics that I was just tired of dealing with.I started to get involved with poor treatment of veterans at VA facilities (if you ever have a problem with them, please call me lol I have been dealing with them for TWO YEARS!); I became the class president of our graduating class (which felt funny due to my age, but oh well, better late than never *grin*); I started to look up new recipes for the family to cook up together and enjoy; I started using my computer to do other things besides gaming.

Do you know there is neat programs like Microsoft Money on there?? Holy poop, there was a tool to help me juggle what I had been neglecting due to lack of time--right on the computer! I began to -- well--COMPUTE!

Whats more, is I used my own nursing skills on myself to help me through it all. Nursing is funny that way, we make plans of care based on several approved "nursing diagnoses". I set up my own plan of care, and even a date to reach certain goals.

What was the best thing, was that I no longer felt hypocritical- I was taking care of myself, so that I could continue to care for others. It really is amazing to me what I see in Labor and Delivery. Such a miracle to witness, day in and day out, the miracle of birth, and sadly-sometimes the sadness of death of a newborn.

Things like that really put life into perspective, especially when you have patients who routinely ask you, after the doc has left, "well, what would YOU do?"

I'd be darned if I said I would go home and play games :P

Edited by: Adrienna Levesque at: 1/8/03 10:33:03 pm

Muhi
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life

Another thing that you have to think about is that there is so much you can do in life. So much you can achieve, so much you can enjoy. Life is too short, you have to start enjoying the moments now.

There are so many things I want to do in life that I'll just never get time to do them all. (no eq is certainly not one of them). I think some people on the game can be very selfish at times when they guilt trip you into playing. Remember, they are not the ones controlling your life or paying your bills. Sometimes you have to be selfish and say no to the people on the game. They do not appreciate that you had to stay up late to get something done for them, or you had to miss a movie to help them with a raid. Remember that.

It made me laugh one time when in guild chat people were discussing what they were doing in RL. One person piped up saying he was doing a phd in micro biology. Another person piped up saying, enjoy your life. Yeah, enjoy your life, play EQ non-stop and at the end of the day you have achieved nothing in your life, you have done nothing with your life. I'd rather have a PhD in biology, then 4 years lvl 65 char on a game that will mean nothing in a few years time.

For me, I have been through hell and back on this game. However, for the past couple of years or so, I log on occasionally, and only play when 'I' have the time, not when a guild dictates. For me, I have a job (which is more than most), i'm still studying part-time for a degree and eventually will move onto a postgrad study or part-time phd in what I want to do. I enjoy keeping fit and have several hobbies outside playing EQ. In fact, the only time I really have to play EQ is sometimes on a saturday, but i refuse to let that game control my life and take over what I want to achieve.

There was one time when this game first came out that it took over my life. I lost a good job because I didn't give two craps about it and just thought of EQ, I didn't achieve anything in those 6 months. I gained weight and went up to 14 stone. Now I'm back down at 10st 12 and you know what, IT FEELS GREAT! I'm alive once again, I'm enjoying my life once again, I'm out in the fresh air, I'm thin again, I have a life again, I have a job once again, I have money to spend on my hobbies, I can afford things and go on holidays! I can enjoy my time with my boyfriend! Its like being set free!

Do not let anybody in the game say whatever you are doing outside the game is a waste of time. You have to think about these people, what have they achieved? Do they play the game 24/7? The game is the biggest waste of time I know, so remember that. If the game starts to be more of a job and a chore than fun, its time to quit. If you miss work over the game, or start not to go out, its time to quit. If the first thing you do when you come home is switch on the game, time to quit, or have a break.

Its strange that when you do have a break, you don't miss it).

This game also makes you depressed. Getting out in the fresh air and having quality time with other people is the best mecidine, I have found that exercising makes you feel a whole lot better.

Bannek Luminare
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Re: life

Quote:

I realized that I was seriously in trouble when I was staying up until 2-3am, playing.

Umm I thought when I only played until 2-3am I was doing great!

/sigh

mami619
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I recently quit as after 1

I recently quit as after 1 AM on Monday and the only reason I quit was because I kept falling asleep at the computer. I then have always read after gaming. Everything I've done has been to avoid dealing with my emotions. I started about the same time my Mom was diagnosed with cancer 4 years ago and since then she has passed away two years ago. I am beginning to realize I need to begin talking more, journaling to deal with some of the feelings I have not been expressing.

Has anyone ever wondered about the idea of being on the computer with this program might be another way to begin a dependency on the computer? Could it almost be like a replacement for what I was doing when I was gaming. The feelings would be different however. I am in another 12 Step program and my sponsor has concerns. But I felt lik this was a way for me to connect with people who understood and had been there, so to speak.

I feel like I am definitely powerless over my addiction and my life is unmanageable. Other people outside of this Program may not see what I was doing as an addiction. It doesn't matter to me how they view it. What's important is how I address it and that I continue to use the Steps and my Higher Power to live one day at a time free from gaming.

mami619

bgh
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Wow, this post is a golden

Wow, this post is a golden oldie. I can't remember the last time Tosha visited the site.

The happiness of a man in this life does not consist in the absence but in the mastery of his passions.
-Alfred Lord Tennyson
____________________________________

Desire to Stop
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mami619 wrote: Has anyone
mami619 wrote:

Has anyone ever wondered about the idea of being on the computer with this program might be another way to begin a dependency on the computer? Could it almost be like a replacement for what I was doing when I was gaming. The feelings would be different however. I am in another 12 Step program and my sponsor has concerns. But I felt lik this was a way for me to connect with people who understood and had been there, so to speak.

My thoughts on spending lots of time here at the site mirror that of what we might tell folks new in AA--don't suddenly decide that now that you are trying to quit drinking it's also time to quit sugar, coffee, and cigarettes, etc. Some things we can live with, some we can't live without.

Does my time here at the site and with OLGA take me farther away from my parenting, or closer? Does my time here at the site and with OLGA make me a better or worse employee? Is my house cleaner or filthier since I began spending time here at the site and with OLGA? Am I taking better or worse care of my health since I began spending time here at the site and doing steps in OLGA? Am I hurting others more or less frequently since I quit gaming and began trying to apply OLGA principles in my life?

For me personally things may be challenging, I may still have tough days, I am still a flawed person--however I am much better on all accounts since I quit gaming and have been part of OLGA.

For anyone in early withdrawal, I would say that it's very valuable to have someplace on line that is "safe" since we spent so many hours in game and/or reading gaming forums, strat guides, etc.

I can't evaluate anyone elses computer useage, and wouldn't want to--but I think I would be a bit flexible if you only just recently stopped gaming, and allow yourself to utilize the support tools here. What I found was that over time my activities in OLGA helped me re-deepen my activities in my other 12 step program so that I had the chance to utilize the best of what both have to offer.

Cheers, Desire to Stop
ALL quoted text (unless otherwise stated) comes from the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous (with wording sometimes changed only to make it more relevant for gaming addiction). I will include page numbers.

Hoping & praying for a measure of recovery for all of us today.

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