Sharing our experience, strength and hope to support each other to recover from problems resulting from excessive game playing.
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wazzapp, you seem like you're doing very well. Perfection remains elusive for many of us. You are smart to compare how things are today with how they were in the past, instead of only comparing them to an ideal situation. Improvement is great, even if flawless is still a little out of reach. I agree that dating can be pretty unpleasant. There are a lot of crazy people out there.
I am good today. I have a lot of work to do the next couple of days to be ready to go on vacation for five days. No plans to game, for sure. Thanks for your help with that.
This week-end has been a though one. Been on hold for long hours yesterday, doing a little of this and a little of that, my girlfriend was doing homeworks. I drive 5 hours (round trip) from Quebec to Montreal every week-ends to see her.
Unfortunately, I happenned to stumble upon some pretty upsetting message exchange between her and a "friend". Meaby I am just making my own hell out of this, but I have a doubt that an affair was going on while I was away. Since it's only doubt, I will just let this one pass, not knowing how to approach the subject, since the information was acquired behind her back.
I am not usualy the type to create my own problems in my head, but doubting your partner is an horrible feeling. A lot worst than the gaming needs feelings I used to have. That had made me weak.
Although I have not relapse, gaming is appealing to one who is bored. I have no plans to game today, or tommorow, but sadness is hard to cope with.
Hopw this sort out to be only in my head, but microagressions hurt relationships, and confidence.
Let's just hope that has gaming was only in my head, this is too.
Facing what consumes you, is the only way to be free. -Hatebreed
lsyckle, that sounds like a messed-up situation and it sounds like it is messing you up some. You must be devoted to do all that driving to spend time with her. You seem upset that she might have something else going on and it's understandable.
Personally, after having been married and discovered my then-wife sneaking around with another man and lying about it, I have lost the ability to completely trust other people. I don't necessarily suspect everyone, but I don't let myself really depend on their fidelity. My most basic rule is this:
Never give someone else the power to control the way you feel about yourself.
If I feel I'm getting into a situation where, if someone does something, it will make me feel bad about myself, I go on high alert. I ask myself what I am doing to give this person control over the way I feel about me. Am I saying to myself things like, "Since she loves me, I must not be all bad"? The problem with that is, if she doesn't love me any more, then it follows that maybe I am all bad. That is unacceptable. That is giving someone else control over the way I feel about myself. I am not giving that away, ever. I try to change what I'm saying to, "I like it that she appears to love me, but that doesn't have anything to do with my basic worth as a person."
It has not been easy to make this adjustment, and I went through an enormous amount of grief to get to this point. Also, one criticism that could be leveled is that this attitude makes it difficult to really enjoy someone else's love. I'm not sure that is correct, but it could be true. Anyway, there are some risks I'm not willing to take, and giving someone else control over my feelings about me is one of them.
I don't know how you'll find your way through this, but I am sure you will. Hang in there. Keep the faith. I am on your side and I believe in you.
No plans to game today.
Back at school after two weeks of no-game rest. The pressure is going to rack up quickly soon, again. Two months ago was the last time I'd experienced this type of pressure, and that time I couldn't hold it all up and went right to gaming to escape real life. Now, I'm back, with more experience not playing games than ever before, and finally seeing real life for the first time since the beginning of last year. I've emerged from the dark age, and do not want to sink back into the purposeless life of gaming.
I'm going to do my best to ignore the negative and see the good in every task I do and motivate myself, because I know it's my own responsibility to do what I must do without questioning.
I now have to be more careful about games than ever before, because I don't want to lose these 7 weeks and 1 day of hard work. In 6 more days, I will be free from gaming for two months! I'll strive to achieve that milestone and beyond.
I will not game today.
"The trouble--it might drag you down
If you get lost, you can always be found." - Home
No games today. Don't want to play them. In fact, I hate them. Hope all of you are well.
I will not game tonight.
Thank you for the time you took to respond to my post. It has been one of the worst week of my life. I now know what stress means and smell. Constant heartbeats, i can still feel the blood pressure going up.
Yesterday, i have confronted her with the situation, and today we kind of broke up. I called her back after only half an hour later to tell her that we shouln't abandon everything for this, but what I really feel is that this situation is just the perfect escape for her. I guess she wasn't #1 honest and #2 happy in our relationship. It isn't the first time I see a woman trying to get on the escape train.
I really feel you when you are talking about keeping control of the way we feel about ourselves. Since this fall, I have been trying hard to find common goals and initiate common projects, withouth much cooperation. It,s unfortunate. I didn't get the feeling she did try to include me in her life.
As a matter of fact, in my "desperate times call for desperate measures" I contacted the man I suspected her to have an affair with. A real gentleman, told me they hadn,t seen each other in months but had some kinky conversations. Had no idea who I was and that my girlfriend was with someone. Poor guy, I'm almost sorry I bothered him with this sh**ty situation, plus embarrasing the image he had of her now friend.
But i have resent, and I am disapointed that she disowned me. That she ignored my existance for an instant to flirt with this one, and meaby others, i don't know, i don't care.
Tommorow I will see her, and this relation will be over.
In love, you can either be right, or be happy.
She didn't choose the happy part.
No plans on gaming today, I couldn't care less about gaming at this point. I'm thinking about removing every social app from my phone. This ruins everything.
A little quote from my friends from Raised Fist, regarding the way I feel about that girl:
"I've been demolishing your bullsh** for ages,
This time I'm breaking it, our friendship, your smile.
See you in the city while you are faking it."
Song is called Friends and traitors...
Well said McPhee!
I'm having an ok day. Studying, workout and night-time socializing is on the agenda, but i m not feeling super-hyped about it, nor should I probably ;P durpi-durp
Today im grateful for: Vitamin supplements, democracy and my friends
Life is looking pretty bright right now compared to a few months ago :) hope i didn't jinx it now! x)
Talk to u soon!
Never alone, go to meetings <3 Mumble voice meetings on cgaa are great, see you there <3
Isyckle, you have such a strong self-confidence that's clearly shown through this difficult period in your life. I cannot begin to comprehend the immense pressure on you at this time: quitting games, breaking up, and still keeping a very clear mind about your situation. It's sad that your girlfriend isn't honest in the relationship, but I'm so glad that you have went through a part of this difficult period with such a clear mind.
I'm doing well with games. I haven't gamed for 53 incredible days already: almost to two months. I'm still struggling to not waste time in my life and make the most out of the opportunities that I have at school. I'm starting to not just look, but focus only on the positive side of every thing and person and ignoring the negatives. So far this has already made my life so much brighter and more manageable and me optimistic.
Thank you all for your support!
I will not game today.
Im pretty good today. Yesterday i did a 9hours course in public speaking/improv and it was great!
Today im thankful for: Great food, Ricky & Morty- series, Improv-theater, Friends,
See u soon =)
No games for 55 days now. I'll keep going with this. Now, unfortunately I haven't found any online community that supports people with chronic procrastinating habits, so I'm doing this on my own. Still, I've begun tackling this problem and seeing results. Today, I finally got off my seat and away from watching Youtube for the whole day and did most of my homework. I'm still doing homework after this, and hopefully I won't waste time any more.
I am back from spending several days on a bicycle tour of southern Louisiana. It was a strange but very fun trip, riding 40 or so miles a day, listening to lots of zydeco music and eating endless quantities of Cajun food. Sounds like everyone is holding up okay. I am good. No plans to game today.
PS Yes, BrandNewDay, the lack of an online support community for procrastinators is a real problem. I wish this could be remedied. Unfortunately, I am not the person to do it. Maybe soon...
wazzapp, congrats on staying away from the games. It may seem like a small thing to other folks, but we know how hard it can be. We also know how great it can be when we can avoid the wretched games. Well done!
BrandNewDay, congrats on what I guess is now 56 or 57 or something like that days. You are the poster ex-gamer. Great work.
lsyckle, you sound like you're in a lot of pain and I am sorry to hear it. It does tend to get better with time, in my experience, but that's not much comfort to you today, I imagine. Distraction is often a big help, especially in the form of dating or even a new relationship. People will tell you it's too soon but that doesn't make any sense to me. If it makes you feel better by giving you hope for the future and that you will someday find a new relationship that is as good or better than the old one, how can it be too soon? Studies have shown that people who remarry soon after divorce do just as well in their next relationship as people who wait. So one thing you might consider is looking for a few dates with some new girls. Dating can be horribly disappointing, certainly, since so many people turn out to be crazy or otherwise unsuitable. But it can also be fun, and it can distract you very effectively while time and distance accumulate and the ache eases somewhat. You might even meet somebody great right off the bat. It's been known to happen. Just don't get too wrapped up in her next time. Try not to lose your head. Remember: Never give away the power to control the way you feel about yourself. Whatever you give her, don't give her that,
I am okay today. No plans to game.
McPhee, I agree that we shouldn't ever give away control of our self-feelings to others. That will only make this life harder to live and slow down our progress and deflate our confidence. I'm not going to do that. I'll keep facing the challenges that come my way and solve them, no matter how others see me. I'll take responsibility for my own actions and know that no one can force me into thinking or doing anything.
I'm well today. Yesterday was the first day that I wasted zero seconds on distractions without anyone being around watching me. I got so much homework done I couldn't even believe it at the time. I made a list of things that I can do in between the homework sessions, another list of things that I can only do after finishing homework, yet another for things that I can only do on holidays without homework, and finally the blacklist: all things I shall never do, ever, and this list includes games. I'm following these lists to guide me through my decisions, and, so far, it's worked very well for me.
How you all are well.
I will not game today. I still need to remember the way that games almost destroyed my life, and the long way I've come since February 8th, when I quit games. It's not been easy at all. I've used more willpower during this period than any time before. I want to keep it this way. I don't want to game. I cannot game. I'll take back my life.
Still going strong!
Feels like my life is working better and better, emotionally, health-wise, socially, professionally.
These gratitude lists have probably played a part in that, aswell as going to NA meetings.
Today im grateful for: Great friends, Great food, Improvisational theater, Rodger Love, Being born in the right time
No plans to game
wazzapp, that's a great list, especially the last one. This is, indeed, a great time to be alive. It is for most of us here in the States anyway. Could definitely be a lot worse. You are sounding totally world-class. It's so great to read your words about how you are feeling so much better about so many things. Inspiring!
BrandNewDay, I had never thought of making a blacklist. That's a great idea. So often it seems like our biggest problems come primarily from occasional slips. If we can just avoid those slips, then we don't have to always make perfect decisions in other areas. Like, I make graphs of stuff such as my monthly work output in dollars. Also my daily weight. I can clearly see that a few brief episodes of screwing up can powerfully work to overcome months of doing well. If I hadn't over-eaten over Thanksgiving-Christmas, and maintained my slow and steady weight loss, I would now weigh several pounds less. And if I hadn't been strangely unproductive May to June of last year, I'd have more money in the bank. I am going to consider making a blacklist. Avoid those screwups! Thanks!
I am good today. I did have an urge out of the blue last night. I thought briefly but pretty intensely about how much fun it would be to play some of the games I used to play. However, I didn't play last night and have no plans to game today
Today is one of those days that im really grateful for not gaming. I almost can't imagine myself wasting my life away and not being able to stop playing. It's like a dark memory from another life. Sure, i'm still addicted, but gaming was even more. It was a part of my pull towards self-destruction. Nothing mattered, not even if i was alive. Gratefulness & positivity (even if it's forced) is a lot easier to carry than bitterness and apathy.
Today im grateful for: Going to the dentist tmr, something i shouldve done long ago (might be getting braces). Coffe. Great friends. New friends. New romances. Rodger Love vocal program.
No plans to game today (thank god)
Talk to u soon
These past few days have been pretty trying for my positivity. I've been trying to ignore the negatives and deliberately look for things that are good, but, maybe because I've slept so little (4 hours), I haven't felt much motivation to be positive all the time or be fully responsible for my actions. This lack of responsibility has also made me waste so much time today. I think, now, the first thing I should start with is to sleep earlier, which would then give me the energy to control myself tomorrow. I need to break this downward spiral now.
I'll also be careful around games, now that I don't have too much willpower due to the lack of sleep.
BrandNewDay, they do say that a good night's sleep starts with getting to bed earlier. Also, going to bed at the same time every night, keeping the room dark, etc. You know the drill. Hang in there.
Wazzapp, being addicted to games is not a problem as long as you don't game. Lots of people have had brushes with the addicive quality of games, recoiled in horror, and never gone near them again. We just happen to be very slow learners, is one way to look at it. Anyway you sound good. Congratz!
I'm good. No plans to game today.
I agree with McPhee, low sleep massively decreases my mood atleast.
Im ok today. I have a slight head-ache and annoyance. I think it's because of a new medicine im taking to help me quit tobacco (Champix).
Today im grateful for: Having a place to sleep. Modern teeth-technology, Fun stuff to look forward to while working, Having all my limbs, Being relatively healthy (some people got it really bad!).
Wazzapp, well said. I'm glad you're taking on the tobacco. I can't recall much I liked about that stuff back when I used to smoke. Best of luck with it!
I'm feeling kind of low this morning. I feel sort of isolated and lonesome and that my efforts to build bridges to other people aren't producing the results I'd hoped for. I guess that happens sometimes. Anyway, no time to worry about it much today. I have a series of phone calls starting in 15 minutes and work tonight on the ambulance at a rave concert until 3 a.m. I'd better get to it.
No plans to game today (not that I'd have time to if I did.)
I don't have much time. But I want to check in. I have a feeling I might fall back into games today. So I'll be careful. Actually, I shouldn't tell myself this. I'll just think about how to live without gaming.
BrandNewDay, a lot of avoiding games successfully is knowing what triggers your urges, as well as feeling them coming. You seem to be learning to pay attention to and interpret signs about your moods and feelings. I think that's probably a good thing in general. It's also very smart to recognize when you are approaching a possible problem point and take some action to deal with it. Real life is incomparably more complicated, challenging and rewarding than any game ever invented. You're playing the real life game well right now.. Congratz!
I am okay. Slightly sleep-deprived due to working at a rave concert until nearly 3 a.m. and a trifle annoyed that I am, once again, going to be toeing up to the start of my favorite race tomorrow morning nursing a nagging injury. Dang! But I am determined to show up and give it my best shot.
No plans to came today.
I feel im slowly getting higher standards for my own behaviours and what type of thinking & emotions i tolerate myself to indulge in. I think it's a lot thanks to the work i've been doing with olga & other self-help related programs.
Today im grateful for: That I am Me! Great friends, My family, Sleeping mask & earplugs, Free education, My ability to feel grateful (going meta wooop!)
Doing an early gratefulness-list today
Today im grateful for: Eggs & kaviar, Hang out with my dad later today, Roger Love's vocal program, Non-alcoholic organic beers (they taste great!).
I've been doing free improvisational theater with student-groups recently. They meetup 1-2 times per week. Yesterday i booked my first paid-course of improv, which is starting in 2 weeks.My hope is that the course will help me improve social skills and make me (even) more exciting to be around =)
No plans to game! Haven't crossed my mind in a while
Talk to u later!
wazzapp, that is textbook personal change! Well done!
I am not finishing up the 10k as I'd planned I would be at this time of the morning. I decided it was too much, with the hip pain I'm experiencing. So I'm going to skip it, rest and heal up and get ready for my next race. Sometimes even elite athletes have to skip events they've trained for.
I just made an account, I was looking for online support for gaming addiction. My big problem is with magic: the gathering online. I was set to have a good, productive, relaxing weekend, but on Friday night, I was coming off a rough workday, my plans with my friends fell through, so I'm sitting around feeling bored, kind of lonely, and kind of agitated. So I decide that it'll be fun to redownload magic: online, even though I know what happens every time I do.
I played from seven in the evening til three in the morning. I woke up at 7:30 and played til 4:30. I went to the gym and spent the evening with friends, then came home today and played from 10 to 7. By my count that's 24 hours out of 48 on this game. I just deleted my account-as I've done dozens of time before, since it's the only way I can get my life to move on from this game-lamenting another weekend that's disappeared.
I'm a social worker, I majored in psychology, so I feel like I have a decent idea of why my brain reacts to this game the way it does, and I generally stay away from it. But sooner or later I'll have an evening when I have a desire to have some fun, and instead of try to look for a way to meet people, learn something new, to do any of the things we're supposed to do to make something out of this life, and I take the easy way out and fire up that game, and then I'm gone. I really want to leave this gaming problem in the past, so I'm hoping that sharing this with everyone will push me to hold myself accountable and move forward with my life :)
With your knowledge of gaming addiction and conscious recognition that gaming is not beneficial to your life, you are already at a good position to go to the next step, which is actually keeping away from games. You might want to decide whether you are actually addicted to games, and, if so, whether you need to completely refrain from gaming. Many posts on Olga have nice strategies for you to keep away from gaming; you can experiment with some of them, and keep those that work specifically for you. This is how I finally quit games completely: after four or five relapses using strategies that didn't work, I finally found the ones that worked well for me. I encourage you to also regularly post on this Daily Countup topic; the accoutability thing really worked for me. Hopefully it does for you too.
I'm doing very well today. Did all the right things and didn't waste time. I'm 62 days since I last gamed. Though I've had many challenges along the way, the time still passes so quickly! I forgot to mention it last time, but I've been clean of games for two months and two days now! I probably didn't expect this to happen when I last quit, but I kept going despite the challenges then. Now, after so many struggles and facing many difficulties, my life has improved very much. I am getting closer to the right path now. I'd like to keep this up.
I'm grateful for this daily count-up and olga in general, for helping me through one of the darkest times so far. I'm grateful for my parents for paying for my education. And I'm grateful for many people around me who've unknowingly supported me and kept me away from gaming.
BrandNewDay, I am so happy and proud to read about you getting up to two months and two days without gaming. That statement probably would sound pathetically phony to somebody who didn't know anything about compulsive excessive gaming, but -- trust me -- I am totally sincere. I love life without gaming and I'm really glad that you've found your way to live it that way too. As we know, the alternative stinks. Well done!
Griffin, congrats on finding your way to Olga. This is the place where you can find the tools and support to do what you want to do. Probably, anyway. No guarantees. But your chances of living game-free shot up dramatically when you joined. That is a statement I'll stand behind.
I think you've already made a key realization about situations that encourage urges. Just being aware of these situations and their power to create urges is a big step. If you didn't already recognize this, you would likely be having more trouble than you are, which is already plenty, I think we can agree. 24 hours out of 48 gaming is too much, obviously.
The next step is to come up with a better plan for dealing with these situations. There are a number of things you can do. I suggest first having some backup activities that you can engage in that will substitute for gaming. Anything that gives you some kind of reward or helps ease your boredom and agitation will do even it it's not particularly positive in itself. Hanging with friends is good as is hitting the gym. But eating too much ice cream or binge-watching Game of Thrones are probably good enough too. Obviously, it's not ideal to replace a really messed-up activity with an only somewhat messed-up activity. But improvement is good, even if it's not perfection.
So make a plan right now for next time you find yourself in a situation you know is going to produce urges. What are you going to do that won't cause you to lament wasting another weekend? Come up with a list. Keep it in your pocket or phone for ready reference when the urges strike. You aready know you can't game just a little, so don't even try to. Total abstinence works great for gaming and is the recommended approach.
And do come back if you keep having trouble. We understand what's going on and care about seeing you get better at dealing with this weird affliction. Daily check-ins is one of the most powerful tools this site has to offer. Try it.
No plans to game today. Thanks to all for your help with that.
Calming down and meditating are two things that are really helpful with making wise decisions instead of wasting time. I came back from school today feeling a bit disoriented. But, I know that this too shall pass...
Yesterday i met up with my dad. I got some wierd psycological blindspots concerning our relationship. As long as we talk about non-serious stuff everything is fine, but when we talk about school/work/future i just freak out. Yesterday the convo was light at first. Then it got more serious and i just felt how i crammed up. I couldn't speak anymore, just make low sounding "mhmmm" sounds. I think the reason why I couldnt speak was because I was filtering everything i was about to say and nothing seemed good enough. I think i have a lot of feelings of shame/guilt/disappointment associated with my dad. I'm gonna talk about it next counceling session.
My reaction to the meeting with my dad really suprised me. I couldnt figure out what caused my feelings, i mean he wasn't saying anything obnoxious, just asking hows school in a friendly tone (perhaps with slight judgment). I've been feeling pretty good and fun lately. Suddenly everything turns back. I want to quit school, cancel improv, stop working out, eat hamburgers & play games again. Maybe it's a automatic response of rebellion.
Anyone of u had a similar experience?
I went to a meeting (NA), and felt better afterwards. Now I feel im back on my feet again, ready to take on the challenges of today. The darkness has withdrawn, for now.
Today im grateful for: Being self-aware enough to realize when i need help, Great food, Great friends, Upcoming improv course, Olganon, Vocal exercises,
Talk to u soon :)
I don't exactly know how to keep myself away from wasting time now. I spent the afternoon yesterday just browsing the web and watching videos. I know I have to do my homework first, but I couldn't stop thinking about the rest of the web when doing homework, and once I got on the web, it was impossible for me to quit. This is sounding a lot like addiction again, though a better one than gaming. And, now, since I've fixed gaming for two months, I feel that I can and should tackle this new problem, though never forgetting the gaming problem. I think I will need to look for some strategies, and I'll start that search here on olga.
wazzapp, that is really impressive self-awareness. I can see it's troubling and puzzling to react to your dad this way, but it's great that you can see it and be so objective about it. Clearly, talking with your father is a major trigger. Next time you are going to talk with him, you need a plan of some kind to help you deal with the likely feelings it will provoke. Not sure what that would look like but I'll bet you can come up with something. Congratz on not giving in to these urges!
BrandNewDay, I think two months into game-free living is a great time to start thinking about eradicating some other maladaptive behaviors. You don't want to try to change too much at one time, because willpower is like a muscle and gets tired and needs to rest. However, you seem to have the gaming well in hand right now. The plan to move on binge-surfing and videos while maintaining your focus on the real threat -- gaming -- is spot on. You can do it.
I'm thinking perhaps some mindfulness training would help. You might be able to check out a book or video from the library or find a Youtube video on the topic. It's basically meditation with some extra stuff, I think. I'm not sure since I haven't done it. But that could be a place to start. It's unfortunate Procrastinators Anonymous is off-line with no re-start date in the offing. That was a great help to me. But feel free to post here about your efforts to stop spending your time on unproductive stuff. We'll listen and respond.
McPhee, ur advice is brilliant as always, thanks.
BrandNewDay, as gaming addict I have a complicated relationship with computers. Obviously, the computer is a wonderful tool, but it can also lead to problems, when the "tool" takes over my entire day and focus. In the beginning of my recovery I had a no-screen policy which was pretty extreme. I basically left my computer at at friends house and used a library computer once per day for Olga. Now i feel more in control even if im far from perfect. Currently when i use computers im almost always asking myself "what am i going to use the computer for?" before i login. That way i can stay on track. Before I wrote this post right now I was looking at my hand-written "to-do-list". It said "Post on olga". I thought "lets do that" and then I turned on the computer. This method works for me, find one that works for u. Mindfulness is also very helpful as McPhee mentioned.
I can really relate to your dilemma BrandNewDay. Periods of unproductiveness, laziness, passivity & apathy is something I've been struggling with my whole life, party because of gaming addiction. When i get out of it, it's usually through "baby steps". I might not be able to completely change in one day and study full time, but instead of watching some stupid thing on ytube i can watch a motivational clip. These small changes add up and i become more productive.
My inner dialog is also important for productivity. Negativity, shame and guilt keeps me stuck in old ways. I need to be kind to myself , accept myself and forgive myself first before my behaviour can change. It can also by a question of values. Is it worth to be productive when it's all gonna go away when I die? I have to logically find my reasons to answer "yes" to that question, otherwise my change of behaviour wont last.
Dealing with passivity & apathy is probably one of the largest problems for individuals today. The fact that ur even reflecting over your situation instead of "telling urself everything is ok" is a huge achievment!
Today im grateful for: Olga, Na, Music, Rick & Morty-tv series, That i found my favourite blue-glas-sunglasses & that the sun is shining =).
wazzapp, I had to read that post several times to make sure I didn't miss anything. That was all very well-expressed and describes an exceptionally insightful and mature viewpoint. Thanks much for sharing it with us. You are really doing well and it's very pleasant and inspiring to see it. Thanks again.
I'm good today. No major problems that I can see at the moment, although I do naturally have a few things I've been procrastinating on. One of the problems with procrastinating is that it's hard to define. Obviously, you can only do so much, and there is always more you can do. So what exactly is procrastination? The dictionary definition seems to revolve around not doing or delaying actions that should be taken soon or immediately. I suppose that helps. Sometimes there are gray areas, but no doubt we all really know when we're procrastinating. Oh well. It's hard to be perfect. I'm just trying to be a little better today than I was yesterday. That's going to have to be good enough.
Wow McPhee, thanks for ur praise!
Today was pretty good. Had seminar at school with my group presenting some work. I feel im becoming more confident in social gatherings when I expose myself to it regularly.
Today im grateful for: Great friends, Great seminar group, I don't have any serious illness, Living in a country with a lot of opportunity, Freedom from games, The fact that I'm happy to be myself (freedom from self-disgust).
Edit: Genuin self-love, **** it has been such a long time since i've felt that. Without reservations. Does it mean that I'm "perfect"? No! It's not the same thing (even if my mind often tells me that). The fact that i've been so hard on myself feels so wierd to me right now. It's like scoffing a kid who's already feeling down. Why do we do this to ourselves?
Talk to u soon peeps!
Today I'll meetup with my mentor for thesis discussion, then i'll study/write. Later i'm working a bit with a client. Probably gonna hit the gym for a quick session. Also do some vocal exercises. Maybe do a vlogg. I haven't decided if i will study all evening, meetup with a friend or perhaps go out to a bar/nightclub for some non-alcoholic organic beers
Today im grateful for: My part-time job (it's fun & rewarding!), Electricity, Water & sewage systems, University Library, Cat pictures, Being game-free.
I don't know how to start combating this new addiction. I'm definitely addicted to the internet in general now. I can't live without it. I spent the entire afternoons yesterday and the day before watching movies and wasting time. It didn't give as much excitement as gaming, but it was definitely addicting. I'm now even afraid I might fall back into gaming, because I can just feel my willpower getting tired and not wanting to do anything. I now have a lot of homework to do, but I just can't bring myself to do it. Compared to the internet, homework seems much less fun and even pointless. I can sense I'm starting to fall into another addiction somewhat similar to gaming, and see my grades plummet yet again. I'm really lost right now. I don't know what to do first. But, I'm ready to quit the internet for as long as possible.
Also, I know that I don't need to improve everything at once, so I will, just like wazzapp said, take baby steps toward not wasting time on the internet.
Wazzapp, you are sounding great. Hang onto these posts and next time you are in a low spot, look back and see how good things can be. I like it that you're cutting yourself some slack and concentrating on what's positive about your current situation. That makes such a huge difference. It's not about being all "la-la, everything is perfect!" It's about seeing enough good that you don't just want to give up. We humans naturally tend to focus on threats and obstacles. Sometimes you have to fight that tendency and find something to be happy about. You're doing well at it.
BrandNewDay, it sounds like you will be happier if you tackle that excessive Internet use. Do this:
1) Identify the situations in which you are likely to start feeling strong urges to waste time on the Internet.
2) Avoid placing yourself in those situations and, if it can't be avoided, come up with a plan to make it harder or less attractive to waste time on the Internet.
For instance, say you tend to surf aimlessly when you have an unappealing homework assignment you are trying to get started on while sitting at home alone. One way to deal with that would be to not sit at home alone. Find a study partner or group to work on it together. Or go to the library and leave your laptop behind, if you can. Or find something appealing about that homework. Remind yourself why you're doing it, and the ultimate end goal you have in mind.
Another thing you can do is take some of those baby steps. For instance, try to avoid going online, even to check your phone for the first, say, one hour of the day. That's not that much, and you'll be able to see how you feel after you do it. If you feel better, which seems likely, you'll be more motivated to go for two hours, etc.
Pleasure predicting is another tool. Consider writing down a number, from 1 (agony) to 100 (ecstasy), about how much you think you'll enjoy spending that hour offline (or those hours of watching videos.) Then after you've done it, write down how much you really did enjoy it. You may reach some surprising conclusions about what you really enjoy doing.
Last, trying playing the tape to the end. When you're about to start surfing aimlessly and watching videos, you are thinking you'll enjoy it, but in the back of your mind you know that after an hour or two, or maybe sooner, it won't be enjoyable anymore. Instead, it will feel like a compulsion that you have to contine even though the knowledge that you're not doing your homework is making you unhappy. So before you start, play the tape to the end. Don't stop with the opening scenes of the movie, when everything is great. Spin it forward to the end, when all is smoking ruins, and then see if you really want to watch that movie.
Good luck with it. The fact that you recognize this is a problem and can recognize the situations where you have trouble means you are already well on the way to fixing it. You can do this!
Much gratitude this morning goes to Silvertabby, who started this thread last year. Check-in threads are gold to me. I would likely still be gaming like a loon if not for Olga and this thread and everyone who participates in it.
Thanks, Silvertabby! Thanks, Olgans!
Wow McPhee, that's some great ideas u've written out. I especially like "pleasure prediction" and "playing the tape to the end". I haven't done much of the former, but been doing the latter without having a name for it.
I'll add a tool i've been using a lot when I feel stuck on the internet: Changing the content of my Internet usage. If it's youtube, watch a motivational clip about bodybuilding or something (I like Elliott Hulse and Tai Lopez) instead of the pointless clips. If it's movies, I watch an inspiring movie or a documentary instead so I become more inspired and smarter (here's a list of movies: http://www.tailopez.com/movies.php). These changes becomes an interstage.
Yeah I'll definately go back and read some of these current posts if i find myself really negative again.
Texted a bit with my dad about what had happened last time we met. I tried to expain my emotional reaction without blaming him. I think our dialog is pretty good. We're probably gonna try to hang out again next week.
Today im grateful for: Olga, Being game-free, New friends, Old friends, Singing, Tasty food, Milk, Having an apartment.
McPhee wrote some time ago: "Perfection remains elusive for many of us. You are smart to compare how things are today with how they were in the past, instead of only comparing them to an ideal situation."
This is very relevant for me. "How?" & "with Who/What?" i compare my current situation can really determine whether I'm grateful or depressed. Furthermore, my mood affects my ability to change and do good things for myself.
Today I'm grateful for: Great music, Guided meditation, New friends, My electric toothbrush, Warm showers.
See u later =)
wazzapp, you are an inspiration. Turning your video watching time into self-improvement ttime is brilliant. Very well done, indeed. The last several months I have tried to read 10 pages of a self-improvement book every day. It's an idea I got from: a self-improvement book. I like it. I think it keeps me positive, energized and hopeful that I'll be better tomorrow than I am today. If nothing else, being exposed to these ideas means I always have some ideas about how to improve things.
My girlfriend's brother died last night in his sleep at age 61, having just gone through surgery, radiation and chemo for a tumor behind his eye. She has also lost both parents in the last year. This is a reminder of the stakes we are playing for. Do you want to spend your one life hiding out in a computer game? It's your life. You get to do with what you want to. If you want to get off the games, we can help you here at Olga. So let's do it, starting today, right now.
I'm going to finish posting to my two maladaptive behavior control groups (I am also six years off booze, as well as a year off games), read the 10 pages, list three things I'm grateful for, write in my journal, play my guitar for a while, go to my son's soccer game, swim a mile in the river (if forecast thunderstorms don't intervene) and start making plans to drive down to my girlfriend's hometown in the next couple of days for another funeral.
Folks, let's not waste our lives, okay? In a perfect world, what would you do with yours today? What tiny first step can you make toward doing that? Are you going to take it?
No plans to game today. Thanks much for your help with that.
Thank you McPhee for these strategies of playing the tape to the end and pleasure predicting! I think playing the tape to the end will serve as a safety net to prevent me from wasting time when I can. I've also talked to my counselor and asked her to use a password to restrict my access to the internet on my phone. That has really helped me focus on homework, because I truly have nothing unproductive that I can possibly do.
I'll do homework now.
Great posts McPhee and BrandNewDay =)
Today im grateful for: My part-time job (a lot of work recently), Nice chill time-off tonight, Protein bars, Gym that's open 24/7, My very down to earth thesis mentor.
I hung out with a friend yesterday. He's been doing a lot of meditation/mindfullness lately. I could see the presence in his eyes, he had a very chill and nice vibe. Motivated me to take up meditation more seriously. I'll start with 5mins per day
Talk to u soon! Thanks for keeping this thread alive
BrandNewDay, that sounds really smart getting your counselor to help you password-protect yourself from the Internet. And you can try a pleasure prediction to see whether it helps you to be happer than surfing and watching videos. To me, it's really about happiness and what we want to do with our lives. If we want to spend our lives in computer games, we can. If we don't want that, with Olga's help we can live our lives in another way. You're going great right now and living your life the way you want to. Excellent!
Wazzapp, I like your plan to do some meditation. I personally feel I get great benefit from a few minutes of that in the morning. It just helps me stay more centered and focused, and less easily distracted. I can concentrate better and am more likely to persist and finish something I start. It's really a powerful payback for a small amount of time investment. Very good!
I'm not having any trouble finding things to be grateful for today. Near the top of the list is the ability to not spend my life playing computer games, which on a rainy Sunday I would almost certainly have been doing just a little more than a year ago. Thank you, Olga and Olgans!
I haven't gamed in more than 100,000 minutes now! It's a giant milestone for me to reach this number, which is equivalent to 6 million seconds of game-free living. I simply cannot believe that I have gone so far. Recently, I've been a bit more inclined to try games again, but know that no matter how bad life seems right now, it will only get worst once I touch a game even for one second. I won't waste one nanosecond on games from now on, even wasting time on the internet is better than that.
Still, I'm beginning to tackle this second addiction: the internet. My tendency to use the internet not only comes from a want to use it, but also almost a hatred for homework, which I developed when I gamed. This feeling still stays with me, reminding me of the many other horrors that gaming brought to my life. Now, I plan to end gaming's legacy in my addiction to the rest of the internet, once and for all, and begin to do my homework and other things productively.
I've blocked all time waster websites on my computer now. I hope I can get to work now.
I will definitely not game today.
BrandNewDay, after 100,000 game-less minutes, I think you are probably ready to tackle another maladaptive behavior. You're not home free on the games yet, most likely. I think a year is probably a reasonable time to feel like you've really whipped it. At that point, you've been through almost every conceivable situation including weekends, paydays, holidays, vacations, etc. And you've been game-free through all of them. I guess leap year could be a future problem, or maybe graduating or getting married (or divorced) or one of these every-now-and-then situations. Otherwise, you've shown you can handle it. You have a toolbox of things you can deploy and they've worked. I think a year is 525,600 minutes, if I recall that song from the musical "Rent" correctly. So you are well on your way to a year. Congratz!
Homework hacks you could try:
- Try to find something you like about doing homework. For instance, the pleasure of submitting it, or of getting it back with a good grade and seeing the person next to you got a 50 on it.
- Gamify it. Treat doing homework like a game. Searching a book for the reference you need is like searching a dungeon level for a magical weapon. Starting your math homework is like starting a quest. Etc.
- Look for the smallest possible step you could take to get started. Sharpening a pencil, logging on to the homework website, even flipping on the light over the desk where you do homework. Anything to get you started in that direction can help.
- Try some meditation. This can help with the tendency to get distracted. It is a tool for improving focus. Give it a shot
I'm good today. No plans to game.
Pretty good day today, went hard in the gym. Today i've felt distracted by phone-texting and facebook-messenger as i try to go through my to-do-list. It draws my attention away. I need to be more proactive and just mute all that stuff.
Today im grateful for: Being game-free (yeah!), Olga, Gym, Vocal exercises (found a "flaw" in my voice that im currently working on), Protein bars, Turkish style yogurt (tastes good with any food!), Great friends,
Wazzapp, thanks for the update. You sound really good. Yes, it's a good idea to turn off alerts from messaging, email and social media. You might try setting up a specific time when you'll check for messages. Once an hour, say. If you're like me, that would represent a huge decline in the number of times you check daily. I also try not to check email or social media before 8 a.m. Some people say you should not check any of that before noon. It's also not a bad idea to try to leave your phone at home from time to time when you are out of the house for a few hours or even a whole day. I have tried this and -- surprise -- the world does not end. It turns out my always-on participation in the digital world is not essential to anybody, even myself.
I'm very glad to not be playing computer games for over a year now and have no plans to game today.
Yesterday, I almost began to have a tiny want to play videogames when my best friend at school began playing a game on his computer. But I refused to look at the screen or discuss it, so I prevented myself from playing games, even if for a nanosecond.
Also, I think I'm starting to form a plan with all the strategies you guys have given me and I've come up with to start doing homework and not wasting time. At all. I'm blocking all distractions, disallowing many activities, and still incentivizing homework by gamifying it with rewards. I'll take smaller steps at first, and gradually move to increase my efficiency. Still, most importantly, for now, I'll need to start all this first.