Daily Count Up and Accountability

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McPhee
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Know what you mean

Wazzapp, it's weird how simply posting to a daily check-in thread can help so much. I don't think it's enough by itself, but when everything else -- playing the tape to the end, meditating, doing it a day at a time, etc -- isn't enough, a daily check-in seems to be just what is needed for me to tip over into game-free living. And I am loving it! Thanks for posting about the wodo-magic. I don't know what that means, but it is a real thing.

BrandNewDay, all you can do is keep trying. I have found meditation helps. Also staying busy. Also finding fun things to do instead of just work, work all the time. I've also benefited from thinking back about what I was doing, thinking and feeling when an urge strikes. Was I alone? At home? Tired? Stressed? Angry? I find that understanding these urges really helps me to undermine them and avoid the games. Good luck! We are with you! On to finals and game-freedom!

Freeatlast, I'm glad you got another day of freedom. I try to stay focused in the moment. If I'm riding my bike and the weather is sweet, I think about that, and how it's really great to be able to do that. I don't think about the stuff that is bothering me, like the car transmission acting up, or the squirrels in the attic, or the deadlines that are creeping up on me. A day of game-free living is a gift. I try to take it and enjoy it. Sounds like you are too. Congrats!

I am okay. No plans to game today.

BrandNewDay
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The Final Sprint

I just finished a final exam this morning. There'll be one more tomorrow. I've been quite unproductive earlier today, but I'm going to "sprint" and finish this final project due tomorrow. I'm still lacking a lot of sleep, and still am very addicted to games. May 21st after 10:00 pm was when I relapsed for the first time in three months. Now, my most recent relapse ended at 7:00 am this morning. It's only been 11 hours so far. A very rough day. I tried to numb the pain by watching videos, but because of all the deadlines and teachers and friends telling me to hurry up, I'm just feeling very stressed. But I have to ignore all that negativity. And start facing the problems. And solve them. 

I'm off to work now.

I won't game today.

I will not game today.

I don't ever want to game today.

"The trouble--it might drag you down
If you get lost, you can always be found." - Home

McPhee
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Hanging in

BrandNewDay, I'd be surprised if all this trouble you are having avoiding games wasn't related to the stress of finals. I hope you can keep trying and come to a better understanding of what's going on in your head when you decided to game again. Then maybe you can come up with another activity that will give you the reward you are after, instead of gaming.

I find there are several reasons I gamed: defiance, escapism and boredom were all in there, along with the simple enjoyment of gaming. Let's not kid ourselves: Gaming can be fun. It's just that the way we do it, 16 hours at a stretch for days and weeks and months at a time, is very far from being fun. It's more like concentrated misery. And we can't do it any other way so it's best just to not game at all. I think you're going to get back to a good game-free place, BrandNewDay. Let's just try to persevere through finals and it should get easier. Hang in there!

I am okay. No plans to game today.

T-Rex
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ME TOO MATE !!!

Hey BrandNewDay

Me too I relapsed the 21st of may last time. I have final exams in 1week and a half. As I'm doing an apprenticeship I have workb and study exams.

I don't know if I will pass. But I have unplugged my computer since may 21st and put my Tablet, my pc and my smartphone in the seller. Right now I only have a sh**ty phone phone...yet it can still play video commentaries... So trying to not get distracted by this but even this is resulting in being tricky... Anyways best of luck I'm pretty much in the same situation than you its cool to feel not so alone !! Best of luck mate !! I hope all works out for you !!! Best wishes and may the force be with you! Amen

BrandNewDay
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Thanks guys!

I'm now 40 hours game-free again. Thanks McPhee and T-Rex for your encouragement! 

Now I have to write a four-page essay that's due tomorrow. I might get little sleep tonight. But, after tomorrow, it'll all be better for the rest of summer. It's worth it. Let me start working.

I didn't game today. And I will not game later today or tomorrow.

Best of luck to you guys as well!

"The trouble--it might drag you down
If you get lost, you can always be found." - Home

McPhee
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Keeping the faith

T-Rex and BrandNewDay, good work! All you can do is try to do better today. You can't change the past and the future is still out of reach. That's my attitude, anyway. I try to enjoy the moment, to the extent possible, without beating myself up about my previous mistakes or getting all wound up about what could go wrong tomorrow. Sometimes that works better than others. But it's generally preferable to obsessing over time periods (the past and the future) about which I can do nothing right now. Good luck to you on finals!

I personally failed the last test I took. That was a couple of weeks ago for a job as an emergency medical technician with an ambulance service. I don't know exactly what went wrong, but I may be able to find out, since it's a government agency and will likely have to provide me with my personnel file if I request it. I intend to do that. I suspect age discrimination played a role, but it could be just that I flubbed one of the tests and interviews. I have another one with a different agency coming up next week and have been studying for it.

No plans to game today.
 

wazzapp
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Hello peeps, happy to see so

Hello peeps, thanks for coming here and sharing/posting

Today ive felt flashes of anger at a person. The anger itself is pretty useless, i would be better off just accepting the situation/person. It motivates me to work more with The Steps. 

I was at a wonderful NA meeting yesterday. A lot of wonderful people doing amazing sharing. It just reminded me of how much I appreciate communities like this. 

Today im grateful for: A lot of things, great friends, nice food, summer, sun, awesome boxing teacher, improv today, soon done with school, NA & Olga, being game-free and sober. 

See u

Never alone, go to meetings <3 Mumble voice meetings on cgaa are great, see you there <3

 

BrandNewDay
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Overdue Essay!

Ahhh I've got to work on it right now but have no motivation. 

I think I should just ignore the motivation and clear my mind and just start doing it. But I still have so many doubts. And maybe I shoul ignore these doubts too.

Phew: 52 hours without games now! It's the longest game-free period since the big relapse. I feel accomplished about that.

Thanks all of you! Let's keep up the good work!

Seriously: no gaming today.

"The trouble--it might drag you down
If you get lost, you can always be found." - Home

McPhee
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Oh yeah!

wazzapp, I struggled with anger for years. I thought I tried everything but couldn't really master it, it seemed to me. I guess perfection is elusive, but I would really like to be better at accepting or ignoring or otherwise dealing with annoying people. One thing that works really well, I found, was to avoid or remove the irritating individual. That may be a copout approach, and of course some people you just can't avoid, but it can be a big relief. Good luck with your work on this!

BrandNewDay, it sounds like you're having trouble with procrastination, which is an old antagonist of mine. A lot of times, I would procrastinate because I felt uneasy somehow about the task I needed to take on. I could be bored, lack confidence, be afraid, feel helpless, etc. Procrastinating allowed me to avoid those feelings. Unfortunately, procrastinating comes with its own set of feelings, which are in some ways worse: shame, guilt, stress, frustration, etc.

Sometimes I found it helped to confront the feelings, evaluate them as rationally as possible and decide which set I wanted more (or less): the procrastination set or the go-ahead-and-do-it-anyway set. And micro-goals were often a good way to break the seal and get started. Usually, I found the no-procrastination feelings were by far the better ones. It's actually comforting, rewarding and pride-inducing to complete a task on time and do it well, I found. And it rarely is as unpleasant as I thought it would be. Good luck with it!

No plans to game today.

wazzapp
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Thanks McPhee, I will start

Thanks McPhee, I will start using that method more hehe ^^

Today i'm generally in a good mood, with flashes of annoyance and irritation. Right now im irritated that I have to prioritize my schedule, and can't be at two places at the same time. LOL. Such a normal human situation, and my reaction is hurting myself with stress & negativity. I would be better off just accepting the situation and do the best I can.

Today im grateful for: Meetings!!, Meditation, Great friends, NA & Olga, being game-free & sober one more day. 

See ya!

 

Never alone, go to meetings <3 Mumble voice meetings on cgaa are great, see you there <3

 

wazzapp
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Hello peeps,

Hello peeps,

I'm pretty good today. Having flashes of acute anger for 10 minutes periods. Often it's because I feel i'm misunderstood in some way. I need to let go of the need to be understood all the time, it robs me of a lot of energy. I'm not entirely sure on how to lessen this need, but right now im going to meeting, meditating and praying to be free from it.

I've been having a lot of problems with my digestive system for a few years. Recently it has gotten worse. Yesterday i started "operation clean food". Im gonna go to a raw-food restaurant for one week, and after that try to implement recipies. It's gonna cost, but i fear the worst if i dont start taking care of my stomach. 

Today im grateful for: Friend visiting me today, Meetings, Meditation, Raw-food-restaurants, Having limbs, The sun, Water, Coffee, NA & Olga, Being game-free & sober!

See ya!

 

Never alone, go to meetings <3 Mumble voice meetings on cgaa are great, see you there <3

 

McPhee
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Good plan!

wazzapp, that sounds like a good plan and I hope your digestive system appreciates it. I can relate to the difficulty of being in two places at one time. I reliably get angry when I feel pressured to do something to please one person at the same time I'm feeling pressured to do something else for another person and the two things are incompatible. Like I'm supposed to be somewhere and another person I'm picking up is late, so now I'm going to be late. I am not sure exactly what is the best way to deal with this. I try to cope mostly by just being aware that I have a weakness in this regard. That helps, and sometimes a little bit better is all you can do.

I am okay. Quite busy, with about a day and half worth of stuff to do most days, but I'm not too stressed about it so far. Also have some people who are being people and trying my patience. But I'm dealing all right with that too, at least up to now.

The past I have some issues with but can't do anything about so I accept it for what it is. The future is somewhat threatening but essentially unknown and unknowable. The present is okay, and I'm trying to appreciate the present as much as I can. Things could be worse.

No plans to game today. Thanks for your help with that.

McPhee
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Yup

Doing okay here. I've really been trying to focus on the present moment and what I can appreciate and enjoy about it, as opposed to obsessing on some idiot thing I've done or some annoying thing someone else has done. I also try not to worry about the future. Like, if I'm on a bike ride, I just try to think about how great it is to be pedaling along in nice weather, with the sun shining, temperature pleasant, bike working great and me being healthy enough to engage in that activity.

I could get hit by a car in the next moment or who knows what else could go wrong or already be wrong and just be waiting to be discovered. But at that precise instant, things are pretty great. This is what I'm thinking to myself, and it generally gives me a pretty deep-down feeling of pleasure and fulfillment. It seems like a simple thing and I'm not sure why I haven't done it all my life. Instead I've seemingly always been worried about something that's already happened and can't be changed or something that might or might not happen. It's nice to have a moment of real peace

No plans to game today.

wazzapp
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Hello peeps,

Hello peeps,

Today i need to practice forgiveness. For some reason I have a hard time accepting my own past behaviour. I need to forgive myself, im only human, and also an addict :P I will pray to my higher power to allow me to forgive myself. 

Today im grateful for: Meetings, Friends, NA & Olga, being game-free & sober.

See u!

Never alone, go to meetings <3 Mumble voice meetings on cgaa are great, see you there <3

 

McPhee
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Another good plan

wazzapp, I'd say forgiving yourself should be a priority. It's hard to enjoy life when you're consumed with self-punishment. I had a little stab of regret last night when I briefly considered what I would do differently if I were 30 again. But, hey, that's over and done. I did what I did for reasons that seemed adequate at the time. Who knows what horrible mistakes I'm making now for similarly adequate-seeming reasons? The past is gone. Tomorrow's a dream. Today is here now and vivid and may be all I ever get. I don't plan to spend it beating myself up for past mistakes. I hope you have success with your self-forgiveness effort.

No gaming plans in today's forecast. Thanks for your help with that.

McPhee
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Doing ok

I wish I could be a little better at controlling the reading. I have always, since I first learned to read, been absolutely captivated by books. Unfortunately, I read to excess sometimes, and right now is one of those times. I'm behind on my work and behind on studying for an important job interview, yet I still spent many hours over the weekend reading a Paul McCartney biography. Even when I thought to myself that I should have been studying or working, I kept reading. Oh, well. All I can do is try to do better today.

No plans to game (or read more about Sir Paul) today.

wazzapp
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Thanks for posting McPhee 

Thanks for posting McPhee 

I feel better now. Today i went to a meeting with meditation-theme. I'm having some minor conflicts with people. I need to take a step back and breathe. Realizing that the "worst-case-outcome" from these situations isn't that bad. 

I want to become a more dynamic, attractive, peaceful and expressive version of myself. I can't be perfect, but i should pay attention to what I can improve. 

Today im grateful for: My sponsor & sponsee, Relative peace of mind, Relative health, Not being broke!, Lots of opportunity, NA & Olga, Being game-free & sober

See ya!

Never alone, go to meetings <3 Mumble voice meetings on cgaa are great, see you there <3

 

BrandNewDay
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Summer time=games?

Yeah, it's summer now; school's finished. And I'm just feeling so much like gaming. I didn't know how to control myself enough, so I gamed again yesterday. Now I'm starting over again. I've had way too many relapses recently. I don't know if I know how to not game any more. 

I still have some important tasks to do with deadlines, and I haven't been doing them the last three days. I feel like I'm losing it. All those strategies and thought processes and whatever. 

I don't really know what to do right now.

I guess I won't game today. I don't know though.

"The trouble--it might drag you down
If you get lost, you can always be found." - Home

wazzapp
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BrandNewDay, thanks for

BrandNewDay, thanks for coming here and telling us how you are. Are you going to meetings?

I went to AA-meeting today and felt a lot more relaxed afterwards. I shared about how i'm afraid of conflicts, and how ridicilous it can be because i go to great lengths to avoid them, even got a few laughs :)

I need to take one day at a time, sometimes i plan too much ahead, and think a lot about the future. Not good. Meditation & meetings help me calm down my very smart, but also very stimuli-seeking and easily depressed, brain xD. I have some great strenghts, but also quite a few weaknesses/defects/wierdness.... and a lot of my work with NA & Olga is about how to handle that, handle my insanity :P 

Today im grateful for being game-free & sober one more day. Thanks for your help!

Never alone, go to meetings <3 Mumble voice meetings on cgaa are great, see you there <3

 

McPhee
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Rough waters

BrandNewDay, I'm glad you got through finals and another semester okay, but I'm sorry to hear the free time is causing  problems. Rest assured: You are not alone in this. Many people have trouble with complex maladaptive behaviors when they find themselves suddenly with more time on their hands than they're used to. For instance, people who are left alone at home for the weekend when other family members are on a trip. Or people who finish a semester, like you.

What I do in these situations is try to come up with some other activities that are really fun. I'm sure you, like most of us, have lots of things to do that you don't want to do. When you're tempted to game, trying to instead fill the empty time with unpleasant chores is really asking a lot of yourself. Many of us game to excess largely so we can escape feelings such as stress and boredom. So ramping up the stress and boredom by insisting that we must clean the garage or do our tax returns or something like that is making the job of avoiding games considerably more difficult. I have much better success when I can think of a non-gaming activity that I really want to do. So is there anything you could do that does not involve gaming and that sounds fun? If you can think of something, that might make it easier to avoid gaming while you adjust your activities to fill the time you used to spend on school.

Wazzapp, I really admire and applaud your consistency in noting the things for which you are grateful. I am reading more and more about the power of a simple daily gratitude practice. It only takes a minute or two, and in just a few days can start retraining your mind to stop obsessing on the inevitable failures of the world to measure up to your standards, and to focus on the things you have to be thankful for. It really seems to boost my happiness. I find I'm able to just accept what's great about the present moment -- some pleasant weather, say, or the fact that I am not broke or sick -- and not obsess about something that's not going right, or might not go right or, craziest of all, might not have gone right. Being negative can make you nuts in some important ways. Thanks for reminding me every day how easy it can be to rein in negativity.

I flunked out of yet another 911 EMS hiring process yesterday. Durn it! But I know where I went wrong on this one, or at least I think I do, so I regard it as a valuable learning opportunity and not just a simple failure. I have another hiring process for a more desirable job next week, so all could still work out well. Meanwhile, I'm pretty okay. I got a sizable check in yesterday, got my broken a/c fixed at a good price and very rapidly (critical in a Texas summer) and now have a day to catch up at work since I wasn't called back for the second day of the EMS hiring process. Lots of other good stuff too. I am grateful indeed.

No plans to game.

Allerseelen
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Today's a good day

A good day for me! I had a relapse recently after nearly 3 years away from gaming, but it taught me some important lessons (new ones, not the same old ones we seem to run into time and again during recovery) and I got right back on the horse. I think we tend to forget that for every time we relapse, there are many more times when we don't. That's worth remembering.

Taking Steps toward recovery since November 2, 2012. The difficulty of the path makes it worth the walking.

McPhee
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Well done!

Allerseelen, great job overcoming that relapse and getting back on the horse. Stories like yours are the reason I keep posting here more or less daily after more than a  year off games. I just really don't want to go back to living like that. I like the way things are going now. If I start gaming again, my life is going to stop being good and start being rotten. And I know, or at least think, that even after a long time off games, there is always the risk of starting to play again.

Like you, I've have lengthy game-free periods (not three years, however, by a long shot) but have always (so far) eventually gone back to playing games. I don't regard that as a horrible tragedy, although it's certainly not ideal. I do want to avoid games as much as possible, however. And I think posting and reading posts like yours will help me to do that. Thanks much!

No plans to game today.

BrandNewDay
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Getting back on track

Thanks for the advice McPhee! 

I've been straying off from my goals in the past 20 days, mainly because of the many gaming relapses I've had recently. Now, I'm more than a day free from games, and I've found out that reading some fun books is quite enjoyable. I'll try to do that instead of games.

And I'll try to check in everyday now, just to remind myself to not game.

I will not game today.

 

"The trouble--it might drag you down
If you get lost, you can always be found." - Home

planner
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I think i am waking up one

I think i am waking up one more time! 

"Recovery is not about dealing with gaming. Recovery is about dealing with Life"

McPhee
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Welcome!

Planner, good morning and I hope you had a good sleep! I wonder if you did, however, because I think that you mean you are waking up to a life of not gaming. And, for folks like us, gaming is not fun or good. It sucks. Anyway, welcome!

BrandNewDay, I apologize for seeming like a know-it-all. I realize I do not know all the answers or probably even any answers at all. I have some opinions. I know a few things that have seemed to work for me so far. And I try to be supportive. That's what I got. I hope it helps and I hope you can avoid the games. Reading fun books sounds like an excellent option.

A few years ago I did a thing where I wrote out a list of what I would do, be and have if I could do, be and have anything I wanted. Anything. Sky's the limit. I let my imagination run free. The benefit of removing of any and all barriers to my wishes and hopes was that I identified what I wanted, not just what I thought I could get. As a result, I was much more strongly motivated to try to find ways to make some of these dreams a reality. And I have since made some of them real.

That doesn't mean that the point of the "If I Could Do, Be and Have Anything" exercise (or worksheet or whatever you want to call it) is to set goals or come up with a life plan. It's to help you get in touch with who you really are and what you really want out of life. There's a lot to be said for that kind of self-knowledge.

I think one of the important benefits for me was not so much in encouraging me to come up with plans to make my dreams come to life. It was that when I was presented with a choice in the course of everyday life, I was more likely to make the choice that would enable my dreams. That may not sound like much, but sometimes it's easy to get confused and make bad choices that don't advance your best interests.

I revisit this sheet occasionally and update it a couple of times a year. My priorities change and also I manage to come up with workable plans to accomplish some of these dreams and have actually accomplished some. Still plenty to work on, however. The great thing is these are things I really, really want, so it's relatively easy to work on making them come to pass.

It's amazing what you can do, and how much you'll enjoy doing it, when you identify what you really, really want, come up with some sort of half-way feasible plan to make it happen, and take step one. You can also make your life better by just keeping in mind what you really, really want, and making decisions appropriately as they come along. Anything that will help me do that, I'm for.

No plans to game today.

BrandNewDay
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Getting Things Done

Hi McPhee! Thanks again for the strategies. You don't seem like a know-it-all to me. I'm looking at your strategies objectively and trying some of them to see which ones work and which don't for me. It's a really nice way to gain some good strategies quickly. Thanks too for the support along the way!

Today, I'm trying to just do things that I want to do in order to become happier after I do them. I'm trying to go for long-term happiness, even if what I'm doing right now might not be completely enjoyable, I know it's going to make me feel more accomplished for a long time afterward, thereby motivating myself to do even more of what I want to do.

Now, for the specifics of which things to do and which to avoid, I'm just trying to predict which ones give me that long-term happiness, and which ones give me immediate gratification and unhappiness later on—such as gaming. 

This is just a strategy I'm testing out. I hope you all have or will find strategies that work better for yourselves. 

I'm grateful for being provided with so many opportunities. I want to take advantage of them now and not regret it later on.

I won't game today. Games make my life suck very much.

"The trouble--it might drag you down
If you get lost, you can always be found." - Home

BrandNewDay
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Second day

I had a very strong urge to game last night, after returning home from dinner. I actually typed in the websites of the games into my browser, but good thing the internet blocker blocked them. I couldn't game last night. So now it's 27 hours already. I'll keep going. 

I also did many things I previously wouldn't do yesterday, such as finishing some writing assignments and running 4 miles at the local park. 

I got 9 hours of sleep last night. I'm feeling great today.

Thanks Olga.

I will not game today.

"The trouble--it might drag you down
If you get lost, you can always be found." - Home

McPhee
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That's it!

BrandNewDay, well done! One thing I've done to help identify what I like is a pleasure predicting sheet. It has three columns. In the first, I write down an activity, such as "study for test" or "watch gaming video." Next to it I write down how much pleasure I think I'll get from it, using a scale of 1 for "hate it more than anything ever" to 100 for "explosion of pure bliss." Then I do the activity and in the last column write down how much I really did enjoy or hate it using the same scale. This can help me get a different perspective on how much I really do like doing things.

It's funny how we get the idea we'll like something, such as playing games, but after we've done it we don't feel we really enjoyed it and wish we hadn't. I feel like part of my ability to avoid games for the last year has been helped by better understanding of what I really do like and what makes me happy. Gaming, it turns out doesn't really make me happy. The reverse, actually.

You are sounding good. Breaking the gaming habit isn't always easy or fast, but you've gotten 27 hours into it. Good work!

I am okay. Last night we played a three-hour show at a place with probably 100 people it much of the time and got a total of $2 in tips. Last time we played there, they loved us. It's hard to figure. Anyway, it's fun to do even if we make zero money.

No plans to game today. Thanks for your help with that.

wazzapp
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Thanks for this thread and

Thanks for this thread and all the wonderful people in it. I find great joy and learning in reading through your posts.

Today i've been toying with gaming-fantasies in my head of the like: "wow i miss that game, maybe i could play it a little". Thankfully i know how that one would end: In misery. 

Now im liberated from this urge and im very thankful for that, im accepting that im a gaming addict, and don't feel m missing out on anything, because life is interresting enough!. Being in that mode of resisting an urge is hell!

Today im grateful for: This forum, great friends, great family, opportunities, freedom, great audiobooks on my phone, relative health, being alive, having hope, having some courage, having found Olga, NA & AA. I really believe these communities can help me to a better life. Also happy for being game-free & sober today

See u peeps.

Never alone, go to meetings <3 Mumble voice meetings on cgaa are great, see you there <3

 

wazzapp
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Hello peeps,

Hello peeps,

I did a goal/dream exercise McPhee have been mentioning in this thread. I was writing out what my future would look like if the sky was the limit. I was a lot more focused on pleasures, and when I came to write about what I wanted to be giving the world/people my enthusiasm dropped somewhat :P. I still managed to write everthing out which is great. I don't feel sorry for myself, which i usually do when i do exercises like these. 

Today im grateful for: Being alive, Having my limbs, Opportunities, Living in a pretty good country!, Relatively healthy, Being game-free & sober today, NA, AA & Olga communities,

See ya!

Never alone, go to meetings <3 Mumble voice meetings on cgaa are great, see you there <3

 

McPhee
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Well said!

Wazzapp, I agree totally with your last two posts. You seem like you are in a really good place and are enjoying it. Can't ask for much more than that.

I am doing pretty well. No plans to game today.

BrandNewDay
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Coming here everyday

I set up a timer on my phone to remind me to come here everyday. It's been helpful in reminding me not to game for that day. Now, it's been 53 hours since I quit games. I hate games because they made me and would still make me lose so much enjoyment for the life without gaming. And even when I gamed I didn't actually enjoy them at all. I think the guilt for playing games fueled my urge to game in order to escape from that guilt—needless to say, this strategy never worked.

And I don't want to game again. 

I've been doing sports in the last two days. I think that really helped give me the motivation and reasons to enjoy real life more now. 

I will not game today. Thank you Olga for that.

"The trouble--it might drag you down
If you get lost, you can always be found." - Home

McPhee
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Very good!

BrandNewday, nice work! That's 53 hours of better living, whatever may come to pass in the future. Well done!

I am off to yet another EMS job interview process in a little while. I wish I could feel more positive about the outcome, but I've failed to make the cut four times now and I'm feeling a little defeated. However, I'm a lot more practiced and skilled at these than I was a couple of years ago. And this is the job I want the most out of all of them so I've prepared pretty carefully. I read their entire 317-page clinical operating guidelines manual over the last couple of days. And within the last month I have I re-read my 1,100-page EMS textbook to prepare for the last two attempts, plus watched many skills videos. I applied here a year and a half ago so I sort of know the drill. Anyway, I've done what I can. I'm going to show up and do my best and let the chips fall where they may.

No plans to game today.

BrandNewDay
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Nice job McPhee!

Hi McPhee your perseverance in pursuing the job is incredible! That is a lot of reading for sure. I hope you get the job. But if you don't, your preparation for it has already shown how hard you can work for jobs in the future. Good luck!

I've been game-free for 76 hours now. I hate how games make me want to play them even though I know they ruin my life afterward. When I play games, I don't actually enjoy them at all. They are quite boring.

I will do other enjoyable things instead.

I will NOT game today. Thank you all for your support!

"The trouble--it might drag you down
If you get lost, you can always be found." - Home

wazzapp
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Congratulations for staying

Congratulations for staying game-free you all!!! Every hour without compulsive migraine-inducing life-evading emotion-evading gaming is a victory, espacially for compulsive gamers like us! 

Today im pretty happy. A bit too stressed about work/school/other activities. I probably have too many things on my to-do-checklists.... I felt sick in my stomach today, probably a combination of stress and bad food. Yesterday i ate great, and i didnt feel like this. 

Today im grateful for: AA, NA & Olga communities that teach me so much and give me the opportunity to live game-free and sober just for today. 

See ya!

Never alone, go to meetings <3 Mumble voice meetings on cgaa are great, see you there <3

 

McPhee
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Outstanding!

BrandNewDay, congrats on 76 hours of gamelessness. That's a great feeling. I hope you can keep being engaged with appealing and productive activities. It really helps. It's much more difficult to not game when you have nothing else to do. If you can identify some things that really get you absorbed and not even thinking about games, those are ones you might want to consider emphasizing. Good luck with it!

Wazzapp, you seem very well. No doubt, we can get overbooked and stress out with trying to do too much. I try to avoid overscheduling, but sometimes it happens. I plan out every week day on a daily planner (Microsoft Outlook), and try to leave a half-hour between every phone call appointment or project work session. That leaves me some time to turn around and practice a song on the guitar, check Facebook and so forth. I also try not to have more than three significant things to accomplish each day. It helps if you don't try to do more than you can realistically do. It's just depressing and defeating to not even have a chance to accomplish something. You're going to find a way to get a lot done without too much stress. I just know it.

I have been reading a lot of self-improvement books lately and I think perhaps the best one has been "Mind Hacking" by Sir John Hargrave. If you're looking for a good one to help you with breaking bad habits, creating good ones, cultivating happiness and fulfillment, boosting productivity and so forth, you might consider it.

Based on his approach or the approaches of writers he suggested I read, every morning I meditate two minutes, write down three things I'm grateful for, journal positively for a few minutes and write down affirmations in nine areas of life that I feel are important to me right now. Example affirmation: "Will I cultivate happiness and fulfillment and bravely do the right thing?" (I read a study that said phrasing affirmations as questions seems to work better than a statement of intention like, "I will cultivate happiness and fulfillment...")

All this takes an hour or so, plus posting to Olga and another mind-melding site I used to quit drinking. It's a lot of investment in self-management, and I'm fortunate to have the schedule freedom to do it all. But I think it's really helping me to have better days and over time, it's reshaping my thinking and the way I look at the world. And that's having an effect on a lot of things, from the size of my bank account to my ability to persevere in the face of rejection and failure. I like to think I'm becoming a somewhat nicer person too. Even if that never happens, I'm sure glad to not be playing games, and I have Olga and you fine folks to thank for that.

Thanks.

No plans to boot one up today.

PS I made it through the first phase of testing and have interviews today. Fingers crossed.

BrandNewDay
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100 hours, then none

I had 100+ hours when I woke up today. I forgot to check in here in the morning.

Then I relapsed for ten or so minutes but pulled back out of the trap of games. I'm still learning though. Around the time when I sank right into the quicksand of gaming, I wasn't doing anything specific because I didn't have a plan for myself. I didn't really feel like doing productive things, because YouTube seemed like a much easier option. Unfortunately, YouTube today had a special icon that attracted my attention, and when I clicked on it, I was led directly to the fancy-looking YouTube gaming section. I knew I shouldn't watch gaming videos, or I could be sucked back into gaming. But that's exactly what happened. And I played the game that the YouTubers were talking about—for a short while. 

So now I'm creating a daily planner right now where I write down 2 to 4 main tasks to do and a rough schedule with goals for every day. I'm still not good at this planning thing. I hope to get better soon.

I'll work on improving my daily life. In the mean time, I'm getting as far away from games as possible. I'll check in here every morning.

I will not game today.

"The trouble--it might drag you down
If you get lost, you can always be found." - Home

BrandNewDay
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Small milestone

5000 seconds since I last played games. I'm feeling pretty good already!

"The trouble--it might drag you down
If you get lost, you can always be found." - Home

wazzapp
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Hello peeps, thanks for your

Hello peeps, thanks for your posts

I've generally felt great today, but im experiencing some trouble. This is to be expected thought, troubles are part of life xD

I was having lunch with my dad, and I get angry with him over and over. I wish I could just listen to him and disregard the things i don't agree with or like, instead of getting angry.

My life is going forward in many areas, but not when it comes to school. I have big troubles sitting down and writing my thesis. I feel no motivation except that it's required to get a job in that field. I have no interest in the subject im writing about. I dont think a change of subject will help, im just not interrested in writing and academia theory... I want to meet people and work, and create real-time real-life results. I feel powerless, even when i try to work on it I have no idea on how to move forward. I'm looking for help though. I've contaced a thesis coach, and we will work together.

Despite what i just mentioned, im pretty optimistic and happy. I really feel im doing improvments.

Today im grateful for: NA & Olga, being game-free & sober, Nice healthy food, Dentists, Great friends, Girls, Summer, 

See ya!

Never alone, go to meetings <3 Mumble voice meetings on cgaa are great, see you there <3

 

McPhee
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Moving on...

BrandNewDay, it sounds like you have a good plan. Once you really get it through your head that you don't want to play any games at all, you'll do better, I predict.
I thought you did a good job of assessing the circumstances and environment surrounding this micro-slip. That's a big part of it. Hang in there!

Wazzapp, thesis writing is tough for a lot of people. My ex-wife did all her coursework but didn't complete her thesis. Since then she's written and published a book, so it wasn't for lack of ability. I imagine getting a thesis coach is the right thing to do. Surely this person has seen it before and has some ideas that will help you.

Having written several books myself as well as thousands of shorter pieces, I can tell you that almost every long writing project had a point at which I just didn't think I was going to be able to finish it. Despair seems, unfortunately, to be a nearly unavoidable part of the process. But if you persevere and -- this is important -- rather than quit entirely, continue to work on the part of the project that seems easier or at least doable, you will likely see your way through whatever's blocking you now, and complete the thesis. That's how I approach things like that, at least. Good luck!

My job interview yesterday went fairly well, I thought, and I'm somewhat optimistic I will get a job offer. That would be very gratifying. However, I'm not taking it for granted and am continuing to research other job opportunities. I like to have a backup plan. It keeps me from worrying too much, if nothing else.

No plans to came today.

wazzapp
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Hello peeps,

Hello peeps,

Once again im questioning my decision to stay in school. It's not the first time. Does it matter if i succeed in something that I don't believe in? If I instead believed in what I did, does it matter much if i succeded or failed? Should I instead do something that I think is important, has an impact on the world, and that I can find joy in doing? Any "sane person" is telling me "no", because "you only have the thesis left and then your done yay!". 

What makes me think the future in this field will be more motivating? It's still the same field, and I will still write papers, but for a client or boss, instead of the university. Isn't it better to cut the cost and draw back now. Will I be able to look at myself through the mirror in 10 years if I keep doing something I don't really believe in? If i didn't even try to make a living off something that I did believe in because of fear of failure. 

Is this whole rant just a symptom of procrastination?

Anyways, im very grateful to be game-free & sober, and im happy for this community. 

See ya!

Edit:

I wanted to add some more hehe

I had lunch with dad again today. This time I got way less angry with him. Only once and low intensity. It felt great to be able to spend 2 hours with him in a good spirit. 

I finally got around starting to work with the thesis. Now i've worked more in an hour than i've done in the past month. The method im using is baby-stepping. It looks something like this:

Read    Do something else

10secs     1min

30secs     1min

45 secs    1min

1min         1min

1min20s    1min20s

e.t.c.

My new study gimmick, yay! XD

Never alone, go to meetings <3 Mumble voice meetings on cgaa are great, see you there <3

 

BrandNewDay
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Nice strategy wazzapp!

Your strategy of baby-stepping is really nice! I've also been using baby steps as the main motivator to get my really boring tasks done.

Sometimes, I also ask myself, is this task worth it? Will it most likely give me long-term happiness, despite making me feel negative in the short term? If yes, I'll do this task no matter what. Everything is easy if we just start doing it, step-by-step, focusing on the next step at any moment.

Congrats on dealing with being angry with your dad as well! :)

I'm now 23 hours since the last relapse. Thankfully I got on Olga today before I've played games again. 

"The trouble--it might drag you down
If you get lost, you can always be found." - Home

vaf29
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Day 1/2 (one-half)

Went to therapy today. Pledged to not game for the rest of the day today and to come here and look around. That's what I'm doing. Am interested in attending the 5 pm Sunday meeting in Bethesda.

Today is my birthday. 

I have been experiencing severe health issues and have been using an online game to cope.  And of course it has taken on a life of its own.  I am in another 12-step program, so I know the drill but need to learn how to immerse myself in OLGA. I need F2F meetings to stay abstinent in my other program.

Okay, I am now going to stop and just sit with not playing and maybe do some laundry.

ODAT

McPhee
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Oh, yeah!

Wazzapp, I am loving the baby steps! Micro-goals are amazingly powerful. What's really great about them is the way they let you get started so easily, and yet they can lead you to complete incredibly difficult macro-goals. Great work!

BrandNewDay, I am so happy you got to 23 hours without gaming and signed onto Olga before getting into them again. Keep it up! It is very important to ask yourself what you want to do, be and have, assuming that you could do, be and have anything at all without limits. It will help to keep you from spending your one irreplaceable life chasing something that you eventually achieve only to realize that you really wanted something else. Do not neglect this vital step!

vaf29, you are so smart to realize what works for you when combating maladaptive complex behaviors like excessive and compulsive gaming. For me, it turns out that the group dynamic is also critical. I only figured this out after many years of struggle and failure, unfortunately. Glad you're being smarter. The online check-in does the trick for me. If face to face is what you need, I'm thrilled there is a face to face you can tap into. Good luck! ODAT indeed! I've been more than a year off games and can report it is totally worth the effort. Gameless living is great.

No plans to game today.

BrandNewDay
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Congrats vaf29! Happy b-day!

Hey vaf29, happy birthday and congrats on your half-day abstinence. The beginning is oftentimes the hardest. Finding something else enjoyable to do besides gaming has helped me a lot in keeping away from games. I also find that simply communicating with someone (like on OLGA) about how I will not game for the day really is often more effective than any mental strategy I can come up with telling myself not to game. This public commitment really helped me.

Wishing you the best in finding a way out of gaming and starting a better life without games!

I won't game today. I found a fun book to read today. Thank you Olga for your encouragement. I'm 45 hours since the last time I gamed. I'll keep it up. 

"The trouble--it might drag you down
If you get lost, you can always be found." - Home

McPhee
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Onward through the fog

BrandNewDay, I'm really glad to hear your abstinence is continuing. Life without games is great! The thought of getting back into gaming and spending all my spare time, and as much of my non-spare time as I can get away with (and even more) sitting around and gaming until my wrist aches and my eyes sting and I stink and the house is a wreck and I'm ignoring my responsibilities and lying to people about what I'm doing so I can ... just ... keep ... playing ... the ... game ... God, I don't want to go back to that so, so, so much. It completely sucks.

Life without gaming on the other hand is great. I'm engaged in many rewarding real life activities and it is hugely better than immersing myself in an imaginary digital world of fantasy. There's nothing wrong with imagination or fantasy, except when it becomes the overwhelming and even exclusive focus of your life and you can't stop or even reduce the obsession's relentless grip on you. That, there is something very wrong with.

I'm so glad I'm not doing that any more, and haven't for over a year, and that you're not gaming either. Well done!

No plans to game today. Thanks, Olga. It means a lot.

wazzapp
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Hello peeps,

Hello peeps,

I feel miserable today. I think I know why. I need to talk to someone im seeing and explain once and for all that I don't want exclusivity. Im procrastinating this. This situation brings out a gaming-urge in me. I just want to escape from my life. I would rate the strength of the urges as 2 out of 10. 

There's still things im grateful for: I have some money in the bank, Have an apartment, People who care about me, friends, family, I have no serious handicap or health issues, I know im a great guy to be around generally. I have almost finished my degree in spite of a lot of gaming in the past years, i mean, i could've still been living at my moms place with no education, but im not, and that's great. Also, for now im game-free and sober, and im kinda greatful for that cuz i know what gaming does to me, it feels good for a bit, but then i feel worse than before, and i need to game more. 

Wow, gratitude-list was really helpful today hehe B-) already feel better lol. 

I've generally felt pretty good for the last couple of months, I need to remember that, and now when I momentairly have some ongoing anxiety i need to be on the alert and attend more meetings (and ofc, resolve the apparent anxiety-causing situation... later.. hehe )

See ya!

Never alone, go to meetings <3 Mumble voice meetings on cgaa are great, see you there <3

 

McPhee
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Nice work!

Wazzapp, great job listing those things to be grateful for. That is an easy and powerful tool and I appreciate your demo of how to do it. Excellent! I hope you're feeling better. I think that we very often game compulsively in order to escape or muffle feelings of anxiety, stress, boredom, anger, loneliness, etc. So your urge to game may be connected with the upset you are feeling about this conflict. I don't know what to tell you about that, except that I understand your reluctance to give away exclusivity. Variety is the spice of life.

No plans to game today.

McPhee
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A small milestone

This seems to be the 900th post to this thread that Silvertabby started a little over a year ag. Thanks so much, Silvertabby! You are much appreciated.

No plans to game today.

wazzapp
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Thanks McPhee for writing in

Thanks McPhee for writing in this thread. I love your encouragement, it really effects me in a positive way

Today I feel pretty good. Started working with my paid thesis coach, right now im just hanging out in his office, studying and taking breaks, and he's checking on me from time to time, and i can ask him question. This is what i need, social contact and accountability, guidance. 

Despite relapses I haven't been doing any considerable gaming for about a year. I've been trying to quit for many years before that, but the breakthrough for me came when I started going to face to face-meetings. I must admit it's been rather tough sometimes. While gaming i've been able to escape any problems in my life, and games have helped me rationalize and do mental gymnastics to tell myself that "all is good", when really i've been pretty stuck in my life for the past years. Now i have to face it all, and i need to do it slowly, otherwise i get overwhelmed. Im happy im facing it now though, I might as well have gamed on into my 80's, but it seems now as if I won't.

Today im grateful for: Not having any serious financial problem or health problem (that i know of), I live in a pretty good country where there is opportonity to create a great life for myself despite the fact that i've been failing for so many years, it's a very forgiving country, Also happy to be game-free & sober, and that i've found Olga, NA & AA

See ya!

Never alone, go to meetings <3 Mumble voice meetings on cgaa are great, see you there <3

 

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