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My Journal - Alex

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Posted

This reminds me of myself whe I tried to quit smoking in the age of 22. Many times I said, after some days without cigarettes, "Oh I know I want to quit smoking... But why shouldnt I? Smoking is so good and it helps me relax" and so I would start smoking again.

Just try it again as long as you dont stop wanting to quit games its all fine. Someday you will do it! Just dont give up!

uhm by the way yes I stopped smoking in the end ;-)

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Posted

Attempt II - Day 1

I found it very hard to work today, I'm sick of studying and am very confused whether or not to game. I receive support to quit here, and support to game in moderation elsewhere and from my family.

My family opinion has changed to "don't deprive yourself of gaming if that is what you find fun, just as long as you can do it in moderation". This is tempting but I know that I won't be able to play in moderation for long, and not at all when the holidays start.

I think one of the main setbacks I face is that I am essentially slaving away at self improvement by quitting games and not doing enough activities which I find fun.

I am grateful for the ability to choose what to do with my time

I am grateful for the running shoes I got today

I am grateful for the delicious dinner I had today.

Sometimes it'll definitely feel like a grind. Not every day is going to be fun. The path to winning is not a straight, easy road, but a path that curves, spirals, sometimes backtracks, often has dead ends, and you may find yourself going in circles at times too.

Some people can game in moderation and that's OK. For me personally, I know I can't. If I start to game, I will take it seriously and everything will start to fall off a cliff. So I wouldn't listen too much to the people who say you should start gaming in moderation if you know you can't. Try to explain to them what happens when you start. They may not understand at first but when they see you pushing forward and working hard towards your goals and dreams, they won't think too much about it anymore most likely.

I'd like to challenge you with this question: do you have a strong enough "why" for why you want to quit gaming? My ultimate reason for it is that I do not want to die having left no one behind. I do not want to die alone. I want to start a family and raise amazing children. For me, that goal cannot include gaming. I do not see a scenario where an environment conducive to being an excellent husband and father includes gaming. I visualize it all the time and I know exactly the types of things I'd be doing in that situation.

So, what's your why? Do you have a reason to do this that is much stronger than all the voices that say it's OK to go back to what you were doing before?

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Posted

Attempt II - Day 1

I found it very hard to work today, I'm sick of studying and am very confused whether or not to game. I receive support to quit here, and support to game in moderation elsewhere and from my family.

My family opinion has changed to "don't deprive yourself of gaming if that is what you find fun, just as long as you can do it in moderation". This is tempting but I know that I won't be able to play in moderation for long, and not at all when the holidays start.

I think one of the main setbacks I face is that I am essentially slaving away at self improvement by quitting games and not doing enough activities which I find fun.

I am grateful for the ability to choose what to do with my time

I am grateful for the running shoes I got today

I am grateful for the delicious dinner I had today.

As Jay as already said, some days are a grind. Think of those days like the grinding that happens in RPG and MMOs, you're grinding through today so tomorrow you can be better (But this time it's real life). This is the research that will promote you to a new age like in Age of Empires or Mythology. 

When I had these kind of days I just told myself even if it wasn't the most productive day, it was still a +1 because I didn't play video games. 

Everyone has an opinion, but at the end of the day you get to choose what to do, and deep down inside you know what is the best for yourself. 

Everyone needs to stop to have fun, you just gotta find something that is fun! Like Tom I really enjoy listening to music, I listen in my car on the way to university everyday pretty much, and it always keeps me going. When I need a reward, for now that reward tends to be getting to hang out with my girlfriend, unfortunately she is going back to her country soon, so I may need to find some other things to do haha, but one thing at a time!

Did you game on your computer, or on a console? You gotta make it as difficult as possible to relapse in a physical way. If you have a console and a particular game you like to much, maybe you can it online etc. If you relapse again while you're waiting for it to sell, that means you gotta get rid of it ASAP, money is no longer an objective so trade it in at ebgames or donate it somewhere. 

When I was in a game crave mode, it was because I didn't want to do anything. My consoles and tv are in a very tight space, so keeping them unplugged means when I'm craving I'm WAY to lazy to squeeze in their and plug them in. That being said, I didn't play console very much after I got into Uni, so really I uninstalled games + steam and that was it.

If you game on a computer, and you've already tried the uninstall technique, and maybe you changed your password, but maybe you don't want to destroy your account then consider selling your gaming computer and getting a computer that doesn't have the power to play the games that tempt you the most.  

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Posted

Attempt II - Day 1

I found it very hard to work today, I'm sick of studying and am very confused whether or not to game. I receive support to quit here, and support to game in moderation elsewhere and from my family.

My family opinion has changed to "don't deprive yourself of gaming if that is what you find fun, just as long as you can do it in moderation". This is tempting but I know that I won't be able to play in moderation for long, and not at all when the holidays start.

I think one of the main setbacks I face is that I am essentially slaving away at self improvement by quitting games and not doing enough activities which I find fun.

I am grateful for the ability to choose what to do with my time

I am grateful for the running shoes I got today

I am grateful for the delicious dinner I had today.

As Jay as already said, some days are a grind. Think of those days like the grinding that happens in RPG and MMOs, you're grinding through today so tomorrow you can be better (But this time it's real life). This is the research that will promote you to a new age like in Age of Empires or Mythology. 

When I had these kind of days I just told myself even if it wasn't the most productive day, it was still a +1 because I didn't play video games. 

Everyone has an opinion, but at the end of the day you get to choose what to do, and deep down inside you know what is the best for yourself. 

Everyone needs to stop to have fun, you just gotta find something that is fun! Like Tom I really enjoy listening to music, I listen in my car on the way to university everyday pretty much, and it always keeps me going. When I need a reward, for now that reward tends to be getting to hang out with my girlfriend, unfortunately she is going back to her country soon, so I may need to find some other things to do haha, but one thing at a time!

Did you game on your computer, or on a console? You gotta make it as difficult as possible to relapse in a physical way. If you have a console and a particular game you like to much, maybe you can it online etc. If you relapse again while you're waiting for it to sell, that means you gotta get rid of it ASAP, money is no longer an objective so trade it in at ebgames or donate it somewhere. 

When I was in a game crave mode, it was because I didn't want to do anything. My consoles and tv are in a very tight space, so keeping them unplugged means when I'm craving I'm WAY to lazy to squeeze in their and plug them in. That being said, I didn't play console very much after I got into Uni, so really I uninstalled games + steam and that was it.

If you game on a computer, and you've already tried the uninstall technique, and maybe you changed your password, but maybe you don't want to destroy your account then consider selling your gaming computer and getting a computer that doesn't have the power to play the games that tempt you the most.  

I'm actually thinking of selling my computer myself and getting a far less powerful machine. I don't need this thing anymore and it actually draws a ridiculous amount of electrical power so I should just look at getting something much less powerful.

As you said, that will also all but destroy the temptation to reinstall Steam or Battle.net for example, and create a new account to keep playing. :)

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Posted

Amen I don't either and plus my gaming computer is a space heater in the winter, my room is noticeably hotter than the rest of the house! I haven't decided how I am going to get rid of it, but I will eventually move onto something else in the future.

If you don't want to spend any money you can take a look at your computer specs and maybe take out some of the ram, or maybe remove the video card and use the one that comes with your motherboard. You might be able to make some money by selling these parts. You could also upgrade your harddrive to a SSD with a lot less room for video games (Think 250gb or something, enough room for your OS and your files).

Another option is to switch your operating system to any of the Linux distros, which severely limits what games you can play, but Steam seems to be bringing a lot more games to it so it may not be as good of an option anymore (but, if you are into programming, linux distros are super nice for programming IMO).

Anyone reading this who isn't sure what they can remove or how, feel free to get in touch with me!

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Posted

Attempt II Day 2

Today I got much more study done, and saw one of my teachers to help me with some things.

I had a short run this morning (15 mins or so) even though I don't normally do running on days I need to get up at 6. If I keep this up every day I will be running every morning!

I didn't do anything productive on the bus, I will make sure to study on the bus tomorrow, and listen to music at the same time to make a compromise (I would normally just read or listen to music).

Thank you again Jay, the questions you posed really helped me to think about what I wanted to get out of quitting games. I realised that I want to be a more social, motivational person who is not afraid to try new things and takes steps towards their dreams. I have an inkling of other ideas in regards to my dreams and what I want to do in the long run, but that generic model should be enough to get me going for now.

Thank you very much Elegwa, those were some great ideas to view each day more positively without games. The grinding idea I found really relevant, the only difference I will need to be aware of is that I won't be able to see the rewards I shall reap when 'grinding' in real life. I gamed on both a pc and console; I have already 'deleted' my steam account so I'm off pc games, but my twin brother and I share an XBOX 360 which he uses frequently so unfortunately I can't sell those, even if I'd like to. He wants to be a game developer so trying to convince him to change his mind about gaming is fruitless, even if he spends countless hours playing. I have felt regrets in getting rid of my steam account, but I know I can become a better person without gaming. Thank you again for the advice!

Targets for tomorrow:

  • Do at least 7x 50 min chunks of study and study related activities while out studying and 1x 50 min at home
  • Run a longer distance in the same amount of time in the morning (I will set the time to use to 20 minutes)
  • Make another diary entry
  • Do something fun at home!

I am grateful for the consistent flow of feedback and support from the community

I am grateful for my dad helping me realise that gaming actually does harm me by reducing my ability to cope with real life situations and reducing social capability

I am grateful for having water to drink whenever I need it.

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Posted

Alex you could also check out podcasts for the bus ride. I really enjoy them and they are a way to be productive without having to force yourself to do work. Try one out, see what you think.

When I quit gaming I had to learn how to have fun again, so if you're struggling with this at times right now, don't worry - it's a process but it will get better.

 

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Posted

Attempt II Day 2

Today I got much more study done, and saw one of my teachers to help me with some things.

I had a short run this morning (15 mins or so) even though I don't normally do running on days I need to get up at 6. If I keep this up every day I will be running every morning!

I didn't do anything productive on the bus, I will make sure to study on the bus tomorrow, and listen to music at the same time to make a compromise (I would normally just read or listen to music).

Thank you again Jay, the questions you posed really helped me to think about what I wanted to get out of quitting games. I realised that I want to be a more social, motivational person who is not afraid to try new things and takes steps towards their dreams. I have an inkling of other ideas in regards to my dreams and what I want to do in the long run, but that generic model should be enough to get me going for now.

Thank you very much Elegwa, those were some great ideas to view each day more positively without games. The grinding idea I found really relevant, the only difference I will need to be aware of is that I won't be able to see the rewards I shall reap when 'grinding' in real life. I gamed on both a pc and console; I have already 'deleted' my steam account so I'm off pc games, but my twin brother and I share an XBOX 360 which he uses frequently so unfortunately I can't sell those, even if I'd like to. He wants to be a game developer so trying to convince him to change his mind about gaming is fruitless, even if he spends countless hours playing. I have felt regrets in getting rid of my steam account, but I know I can become a better person without gaming. Thank you again for the advice!

Targets for tomorrow:

  • Do at least 7x 50 min chunks of study and study related activities while out studying and 1x 50 min at home
  • Run a longer distance in the same amount of time in the morning (I will set the time to use to 20 minutes)
  • Make another diary entry
  • Do something fun at home!

I am grateful for the consistent flow of feedback and support from the community

I am grateful for my dad helping me realise that gaming actually does harm me by reducing my ability to cope with real life situations and reducing social capability

I am grateful for having water to drink whenever I need it.

My pleasure Alex! It doesn't work for everybody but I personally tend to get motivated when someone presents a challenge to me about my goals from time to time.

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Attempt II Day 3

Achieved my goals set yesterday, apart from the fact that I didn't time all my studying but I did about 6 x 50 minutes which is still a big improvement from yesterday. I ran a slightly longer distance, but did so in 14 minutes and 0.06 seconds compared to 15 minutes yesterday. I am making another diary entry, so I can tick that off the list. I managed to get the family to play Settlers of Catan together, which was fun despite me losing by a long shot. 

Goals met, I'm set! Now for some more goals for tomorrow, and will try implementing penalties for not completing tasks for extra motivation. By the way the generosity fund is a penalty I thought of a while ago when going through respawn, but didn't put into practice. It means that if I don't do the required task then I need to put $5 of my own money into a fund that I will later use on spending on friends or random people to start a conversation as a random act of kindness. I'll try trick myself into desiring really lame rewards for completing the tasks, we'll see how it goes.

Goals:

  • Do 7 x 50 minute blocks of study, timed and recorded this time! Otherwise $5 to add to generosity fund. Reward: Extra museli bar in my lunch
  • Run a new course that will take 20 minutes to run. ^^ Same penalty
  • Get in bed and start reading by 8:20 - If I don't do this I will add $5 to my generosity fund. Reward: fruit snack

I had cravings to play Europa Universalis 4 this afternoon, but strangely I unintentionally subdued it by looking at completed games, and saw the amount of time invested in these completed games (about 900 hours+) which scared me I suppose.

I had multiple opportunities to get to know new people today, but I didn't think about the risk factor like I should have. No risk to health = safe, and talking to people develops social skills. Fear of embarrassment needs to be ignored because embarrassment is temporary.

I am grateful for the list of podcasts, motivational videos and music, and books I have accumulated to help me quit games.

i am grateful for socks. My feet just get cold all the time without them.

I am grateful that there are others willing to help me along the path to success.

 

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Attempt II Day 3

Achieved my goals set yesterday, apart from the fact that I didn't time all my studying but I did about 6 x 50 minutes which is still a big improvement from yesterday. I ran a slightly longer distance, but did so in 14 minutes and 0.06 seconds compared to 15 minutes yesterday. I am making another diary entry, so I can tick that off the list. I managed to get the family to play Settlers of Catan together, which was fun despite me losing by a long shot. 

Goals met, I'm set! Now for some more goals for tomorrow, and will try implementing penalties for not completing tasks for extra motivation. By the way the generosity fund is a penalty I thought of a while ago when going through respawn, but didn't put into practice. It means that if I don't do the required task then I need to put $5 of my own money into a fund that I will later use on spending on friends or random people to start a conversation as a random act of kindness. I'll try trick myself into desiring really lame rewards for completing the tasks, we'll see how it goes.

Goals:

  • Do 7 x 50 minute blocks of study, timed and recorded this time! Otherwise $5 to add to generosity fund. Reward: Extra museli bar in my lunch
  • Run a new course that will take 20 minutes to run. ^^ Same penalty
  • Get in bed and start reading by 8:20 - If I don't do this I will add $5 to my generosity fund. Reward: fruit snack

I had cravings to play Europa Universalis 4 this afternoon, but strangely I unintentionally subdued it by looking at completed games, and saw the amount of time invested in these completed games (about 900 hours+) which scared me I suppose.

I had multiple opportunities to get to know new people today, but I didn't think about the risk factor like I should have. No risk to health = safe, and talking to people develops social skills. Fear of embarrassment needs to be ignored because embarrassment is temporary.

I am grateful for the list of podcasts, motivational videos and music, and books I have accumulated to help me quit games.

i am grateful for socks. My feet just get cold all the time without them.

I am grateful that there are others willing to help me along the path to success.

 

Alex, I'm really enjoying following your progress. I'm gonna have to find a way to keep up, haha!

I definitely agree with you about talking to people. There are so many people out there, who cares if you embarrass yourself in front of a few of them! The only way to get better at anything is to practice, and if you don't open your mouth and just start talking, you'll never know what kind of friendships you may have missed out on. It's just not something worth fretting about. The added bonus is that once you get over the fear of doing one thing, I think it becomes easier to conquer other fears as well.

Keep at it Alex, you're doing awesome! :)

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Love Settlers of Catan!

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Days 19-26

No excuses. I've relapsed. On the last day of school I felt I needed a ‘reward’ and having been bored for weeks without games; and just started playing games when I saw my brother on Dark Souls 2. I had played about 2 hours a day since Wednesday and the guilt has crept in and my family are disappointed with my lack of commitment.

This feels like a good place to chime in. I've been reading up and I have to say, Alex you've been doing a great job! I totally get feeling guilty, but it's going to take time. I found it very intriguing that you've mentioned Dark Souls 2. I originally went to school for game design but swapped year later into english lit because as I discovered I'm just awful at math, but I digress. 

Lets dig a little deeper into why the souls games are appealing. I played Dark Souls thoroughly and only beat 2 once. Here's what I've learned from it: The game itself doesn't want to hold your hand. Of course it wants you to finish it and enjoy the content but it's by all means not easy. Let's apply this same concept to life. Boss fights in the game can be brutal to the point where others would throw their controller in frustration, but others stick it out and figure out ways to succeed.  Of course it's a video game and the rules and path are more or less set in front of you, but I thought it was rather sobering that it was a great representation of the path we all struggle on. 

Ultimately we're here because games have affected us Negatively now more so positively. And I'm sorry if using games to point out some of the positive things may stur up some cravings, but it's about learning from the mistakes to succeed :) 

 

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Days 19-26

No excuses. I've relapsed. On the last day of school I felt I needed a ‘reward’ and having been bored for weeks without games; and just started playing games when I saw my brother on Dark Souls 2. I had played about 2 hours a day since Wednesday and the guilt has crept in and my family are disappointed with my lack of commitment.

This feels like a good place to chime in. I've been reading up and I have to say, Alex you've been doing a great job! I totally get feeling guilty, but it's going to take time. I found it very intriguing that you've mentioned Dark Souls 2. I originally went to school for game design but swapped year later into english lit because as I discovered I'm just awful at math, but I digress. 

Lets dig a little deeper into why the souls games are appealing. I played Dark Souls thoroughly and only beat 2 once. Here's what I've learned from it: The game itself doesn't want to hold your hand. Of course it wants you to finish it and enjoy the content but it's by all means not easy. Let's apply this same concept to life. Boss fights in the game can be brutal to the point where others would throw their controller in frustration, but others stick it out and figure out ways to succeed.  Of course it's a video game and the rules and path are more or less set in front of you, but I thought it was rather sobering that it was a great representation of the path we all struggle on. 

Ultimately we're here because games have affected us Negatively now more so positively. And I'm sorry if using games to point out some of the positive things may stur up some cravings, but it's about learning from the mistakes to succeed :) 

 

Thank you Octsober, it actually was a very sobering thought to be reminded that life holds challenges similar to games, but that the path is not set out before us in real life.

I was also needed to be reminded that gaming as an adult generally has more negative effects than positive, which is why I searched out game quitters in the first place. I'll do my best to learn from my mistake and move on :)

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Attempt II Day 4

Its past my 'bed time' so I'll make it quick.

I disappointingly didn't meet my running goal or work goal today; it was rainy most of the day so I didn't do the morning run and didn't go to the library to study and so didn't get the desired quantity of study done.

I have the same goals for tomorrow, same penalties and rewards.

I have been mostly confused during the day, mulling over whether my decision to quit gaming is well founded or not. After some meditation I was able to study better and  lean towards the idea that I can improve myself: I have tried and tested what gaming is like but not for self improving for at least 3 months.

If anybody can pitch in some related ideas on why quitting is better in the long/short term I would really appreciate it!

I downloaded some podcasts, so I will put those to good use tomorrow!

I am grateful for the game quitting gurus that hover through the community

I am grateful for being able to play Settlers of Catan the board game again with the family this afternoon, I won my first game in ages!

I am grateful for the consistent flow of suggestions that are posted on the forum!

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Attempt II Day 4

Its past my 'bed time' so I'll make it quick.

I disappointingly didn't meet my running goal or work goal today; it was rainy most of the day so I didn't do the morning run and didn't go to the library to study and so didn't get the desired quantity of study done.

I have the same goals for tomorrow, same penalties and rewards.

I have been mostly confused during the day, mulling over whether my decision to quit gaming is well founded or not. After some meditation I was able to study better and  lean towards the idea that I can improve myself: I have tried and tested what gaming is like but not for self improving for at least 3 months.

If anybody can pitch in some related ideas on why quitting is better in the long/short term I would really appreciate it!

I downloaded some podcasts, so I will put those to good use tomorrow!

I am grateful for the game quitting gurus that hover through the community

I am grateful for being able to play Settlers of Catan the board game again with the family this afternoon, I won my first game in ages!

I am grateful for the consistent flow of suggestions that are posted on the forum!

Hey Alex,

I cannot speak for you of course but the main reason that I want to quit video games is because I KNOW in my heart of hearts that I will die full of regret if I don't. Whenever I start playing video games, everything else in my life takes a back seat. It can be easy to question the decision early on when we start to think about the video games we've played and get lost in nostalgia, so that's why we need a very powerful reason, a goal that we're working towards that doesn't leave room for something as time consuming as video games.

Some days it's going to be a slog but as long as you have that reason, you can always pick yourself up and get back on track! :)

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