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  1. Yesterday
  2. This has been my siren song for a loooong time now... I'm turning 38 this Sunday... it's a thought that thankfully is loosening its grip in my mind, but the remnants of it still linger around, like the smell of BBQ sometimes walking around the block on a Friday afternoon in the summer. I can't tell exactly where it's coming from, but it smells great, and I can't stop thinking about eating when it's there. What I have realized, and have to remind myself quite often, is that the choices I made in life are what led me to where I am now. That it makes sense for me to be where I am now. That it's ok to feel 'behind'. My wife is a mental health coach and she was telling me about a 60-year-old teacher that is retiring soon and still feels imposter syndrome. That although he gets great reviews from his students and parents he still feels "like a loser". Even at his age, he is still dealing with this fear and anxiety and worry. She sent me this video a couple of days ago: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oDzfZOfNki4 I used to think life gets easier. But then when I was talking to a 16-year-old in my karate class, I found myself saying that life doesn't easier, it gets harder... we just become better at handling it. The 3-minute video above tells it all. I can tell with you certainty that when I was your age I was a lot more lost and confused and not nearly as aware of myself. You are brave for sharing your journey, your exploration and your questioning of self... keep it up. I'm proud of you. --- "For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control." 2 Timothy 1:7
  3. Welcome eaglemarin, glad you are joining us on this adventure! I can relate to mobile games being all-consuming for me, and having an all-or-nothing relationship with gaming. It's taken me a long time, and many many relapses into realizing that gaming is something that WILL take over my life and make it unmanageable if I play. Looking forward to seeing your progress over the 90 days, I just started my challenge a couple weeks ago.
  4. Day 15 Cold shower (full cold): 2 minutes Morning meditation: 20 minutes Last evening stretching: 5 minutes --- With my cold shower today I started full cold and sang a song in my head while I was in there. It was pretty jarring at first, I was washing my body in the cold water and dropping the body while I was shivering the whole time. But after about 20-30 seconds I settled down a bit... the water started to feel less cold, and when I got out of the shower, I felt a sense of repose, tranquility, and strength. I could feel my identity shifting into someone who takes cold showers. Who can decide to do something that is extremely unpleasant in the short term for the good it does in so many different ways afterwards (and during, if you stay long enough in the water). Morning meditation went smoothly, used the Waking Up app to listen to Loch Kelly guide me into what he calls 'effortless mindfulness'. My favourite instruction is 'what arises when there is no problem to solve'? Perhaps deserving of a longer post on this sometime. Evening stretches... my evening routine is I guess in a place of observation right now. I stayed up until 11 or so, built a piece of furniture that will hold plants for my wife, read/listened to a new book while folding laundry, and just hung out. Right after I got home from work I zoned out on my phone for an hour. Reddit again. Let's delete it off my phone today, see what happens. Today is Friday, my wife has a surprise for my birthday... we are watching something. Have no idea what it is, exciting! Usually, with surprises, she can't keep a secret so this will be exciting. Happy Friday!
  5. Feeling a bit stuck in life. I just feel as if I’m not making any forward progress in my life. I’m not doing well at work, I’m not in school, and I’ve tried and failed to quit video games several times. Not a very impressive track record. Not to mention, I’m struggling to pick up new hobbies. On my off days, I’m either watching Netflix or sleeping. Not the most productive use of my time, I know. Just goes to show how much of my life was being consumed by gaming. Problem is, I don’t know how to fill that void. I spent some time following a drawing tutorial this evening, which was a little fun, but I don’t see myself doing it very often. Granted, I really only tried it once, so I’ll have to try it again to draw a more reasonable conclusion. Other than that, it’s a desperate struggle to ward off boredom day after day. Hopefully with time I can pick up more meaningful hobbies. The solution I’ve come up with for the time being is just to keep busy. I figure that if I’m busy all the time, I won’t have time to be bored. I’m gonna start going in to work even on off days, and I’m considering picking up some online classes. I know it’s not good to overwork myself and that drowning myself in work is not the healthiest coping strategy, but to me it’s better than the alternative of not having enough going on in my life - the perfect scenario for me to start feeling discontent and dissatisfied with my life. The way I see it, the busier I am, the less time I have to be bored or dissatisfied. I’m going in to work tomorrow morning even though I’m not scheduled to work, and I plan to stay all day. Let’s see how that goes.
  6. Hi! Today I deleted my account to a mobile game, once again. This time I'd only played for 3 days, but knew that the game was becoming all-consuming for me once again. I had to delete it. I'm thankful that I caught myself. Before this I hadn't played any games for quite some time, a year maybe? I lost track. I became addicted to gaming about 10 years ago. I went through professional counseling for the addiction for a number of years and my therapist (who has almost become a dear friend by now) helped me to beat the addiction. I relapsed many times of course throughout the years but I was able to catch myself each time before letting things progress too far. Today I googled "game addiction" and the harms of today's mobile games, and it led me here. I just completed the first chapter of Respawn. For me it is not about perfection and more about the overall progress I'm making. I'm also learning that I have a "all-or-nothing" relationship with gaming. It's either I don't play any games period or I go all the way in. My resolution is to quit gaming cold turkey for 90 days, following what the program recommends.
  7. Congratulations on the 123 day streak! Well done indeed! I was in a very similar situation as you. I became addicted to video games in graduate school, also studying engineering. It took me a long time as well, after seeking professional help, to understand that I was using games as an escape from hard assignments. The friend who persuaded you to seek counseling is a great friend. Failing one semester really isn't a big deal in the long run. I know it can feel like a big deal that you're now behind your peers, but don't beat yourself up too much about it. You're gaining an opportunity to learn how to overcome a setback and this experience will help you build resilience and serve you for the rest of your life. For me, I failed my program, took nearly a 2-year leave, then went back and finished my degree. I've been gainfully employed for ten years since then and am mostly satisfied with where I am in life. There were short periods when I relapsed into gaming, I'm not perfect and I've learned to accept. Understanding the motivation behind gaming for me, as an escape, has allowed me to see gaming as what it is.
  8. Glad to hear. What he said 🙂
  9. Entry 8.12 (Written on 9.12) Day 80: No Useless Videos Day 78: Sticking to Food schedule Top Priority: Partly Accomplished. I ate three meals but the times were approximately as follows: . Breakfast 13 15 - 14 47, lunch 18 45 - 19 55, and dinner 22 05 22 45 (Instead of 12 30 - 14 00), (Instead of 17 00 - 18 00) (instead of 21 00 21 45). 3 things I did right today, no matter how small: -3.5 hr abs workout (Skipped the run of half hour which was missing from yesterday) -Cold shower when feeling sleepy after dinner -Replacing the majority of burpees with no jump cardio (Since it made me pee in my bed multiple times) 1 thing I could do better: leave for workout faster and not thinking about how rainy it is and procrastinating for 30-45 minutes Tomorrow's top priority: Get stuff that is needed from store to clean the mattress cover from the pee stain I made
  10. Last week
  11. Well, I am sipping (grocery store) coffee again, so I might as well make this a thing / make time for this: Wednesday, December 8th, 2022: I guess yesterday wasn't notable until the dinner with colleagues. To my surprise (but really, as I likely should have expected), no one brought up my anger/paranoia and originally not wanting to attend. In contrast, it was discomforting when I was asked to share what was going in my life. Outside of work, I have nothing. Internet, fap, that's it. I don't exercise, I hardly cook... I did mention that (more often than not), I am sleep deprived on the weekends (web search term: "revenge bedtime procrastination" is relevant at times.) As I described, I am essentially a bundle of poor coping mechanisms. It was ironic, commenting on a underperforming employee at another colleague's company, when I also get flustered by my day-to-day work. I ruminated heavily afterwards, feeling anxious. Briefly attempted to meditate, felt only slightly better. Despite initially abstaining, I did end up both fapping and staying up until midnight. --- It is alarming how different of a person I am in my head, and how I imagine how things versus how they actually went. I am still angry. I am a loser. I am still leaving in fear of what happened in 2021, how everyone would be willing to turn on me, fear of my customers, fear of my manager, fear of losing my job. Waste of a year...waste of a life? I am supposed to "have it together" by now at my age. Why do I fear losing my job, if they already tried to fire me? The financial need? My apartment rent? The fact I would be too slow to get out? Potential legal consequences? All things for which I have no experience. Something within gave up a long while ago... The silver lining (I guess) is that I did not overshare. ... I have been adding little bits to this, but I guess I'm done. I can edit later if needed. Still...ugh, stop! I am committing to not attending the team lunch that occurs in about an hour. As said above, the anger is still there.
  12. Day 14 Cold shower (full cold): 1 minute Morning meditation: 20 minutes Last evening stretching: 1 minute --- Cold shower was funny this morning, I had it on full cold for 30 seconds, then it got COLDER. I was like ok, my shower is playing tricks on me, that's ok, reset the timer. Ahhh it's so invigorating to take a cold shower. I was shaking and counting and would feel small moments of relaxation in the cold. I read some articles about after staying in the cold for 2-3 minutes your body adjusts, then you can really enjoy it. I'm not there yet! Morning meditation... started with 10 minutes, then added another 10. My mind was telling me I have to get ready for work, time is running out, but I said you know what, this is my priority, I can make it work, I don't want to live in a scarcity mindset. Last night was hilarious, I ate dinner at like 7:30-8pm, went to cuddle my wife in bed, fell asleep, she presumably did not, and went downstairs to clean the kitchen and woke me up a couple hours later, I went to the washroom to brush my teeth, and that's where I stretched for like, a minute. Even a minute is generous, but I consciously did some stretching, so I'm gonna call it a win. Have an amazing day! 🙂
  13. I’m now a few days into quitting games, and a day without porn. So far so good. No major cravings for games. I relapsed with porn but I’m back on the wagon now. As far as going without the phone, that’s going fairly well. I managed to stay off of it for a good portion of the day before I got to work. Once at work, it became a bit more of a challenge. I kept the phone on to watch some NBA basketball while it was slow. I still loathe the feeling of being bored with nothing to do, and I think I always will; hence putting on the game. Pretty much watched the game and fooled around with some coworkers until it was time to go home. Pretty uneventful day, all things considered. In other news, I created a preliminary budget. I went grocery shopping, and after that, I was inspired to start budgeting from a Netflix documentary about money management. My dad already gets half of my paycheck to save, but I want to do better with the half that I receive. So, I’m using the monthly budget template on Google Sheets to budget the money I have left over from my paycheck. I plan to do the same with every check I receive from now on. So far so good! I’ve also gotten back into meditation. There was a point in time where I was heavily focused on spirituality, and I meditated several times a day. I want to get back to that way of life. I was a lot more tranquil back then, and I feel like I was happier, too. But, I no longer enjoy meditating as much as I used to. So, I’m trying to ease my way back into it. I can’t meditate with my eyes closed anymore, but I can with my eyes open, so I’m doing that for the time being. It’s actually somewhat enjoyable this way, with my eyes open. Granted, I’m pretty much just staring blankly at whatever is directly in front of me, but I feel like I’m better able to focus on my breath with eyes open, as opposed to eyes closed. Kinda weird, I know. Anyways, I meditated twice today, which is cool. Gonna try for the same tomorrow.
  14. Day 13 My sleep schedule has been a bit wonky again. Nights starting to get later and later, and morning creeping later as well. It's not that bad... but I can see it catching up to me soon. Ended up going to bed around 12:30 last night and woke up at 7 this morning, and I pretty much just had time to shower, make a smoothie, pack my lunch, and go to work. Also spent a couple of hours after work one of the past few days just scrolling on Reddit. Just passively consuming information and people's comments and replies to each other. Just some itch that needed to get scratched and boom, I'm gone for a bit. Lost in the black hole. My therapist would ask me to try to identify the emotion just before feeling the urge to game or turn to some distracting activity. I think I was just tired. Wanted to "rest". Actually just ended up zoning out. Mentally checked out of my existing reality and into the virtual reality where my mind can run around and chase fleeting thoughts and information and feed on the hilarious comments from others. Probably I was feeling overwhelmed with the amount of stuff to do. Well, the good news is I didn't turn to gaming! Also good news, I took a cold shower today... and got to turn it all the way down to full cold for maybe 30 seconds. I think I may start just starting and ending with cold showers, but I love the warmth in the morning so much... I even flushed the toilet once or twice to get the water hotter. I was exploring some 12-step material and discovered there are quite a few resources rooted in Buddhist practices and traditions that resonate with me quite strongly. The best one I found is https://recoverydharma.org/ - they seem to have a very solid structure, lots of materials, and plenty of available meetings to attend. I'm eyeing one on Mondays at 6 pm... that'll give me some time on Sundays to work on the material. I'm going to restructure this journal a bit, and put some habit-tracking stuff at the top, then have room below it for my reflections. Really want to get into a daily habit of posting, even if there are no reflections, just to update the habits and keep the momentum going. So, what habits are we tracking? Let's start with cold showers, defined as at least 30 seconds at full cold in the morning. We can also add meditation, let's say 20 minutes in the morning to start. Lastly, let's look at an evening stretching routine - I have some exercises from my chiropractor to build up my muscular strength for maintaining a proper posture and can do some light yoga in there as well, say 15 minutes total. Perhaps I can use the stretching routine as an anchor for my evenings... electronics off by 8, then immediately go into stretching which will signal to my body it's time to wind down, after which I can read/write/sauna/bath/massage/relaaaaax. Let's see how it goes!
  15. Courageous move to admit at this point in life that you have this struggle, after accomplishing all of that. Hope for a quick reset back on the king's path. Which Island is that? Is that where you live? On another note, I suggest to write shorter messages at least for the beginning, and just concentrate on frequency so that you could build the habit of journaling daily. What do you think?
  16. Entry 7.12 Day 79: No Useless Videos Day 77: Sticking to Food schedule Top Priority: Accomplished. Managed to get there on time, and got valuable info. 3 things I did right today, no matter how small: -3 hr leg workout -Reading 10 pages of a book instead of 5 -Wrote an e-mail to airport regarding mechanic/technician jobs 1 thing I could do better: Sent e-mail to the address I received when I was at the health office straight away without delay(I haven't done so yet) Tomorrow's top priority: 3 meals but with workout still in the morning. In the rain so it seems. Thank you for this challenge that allows me to grow! Approximate times of meals 12 30 14 00, 17 00 18 00, 21 00 21 45 (Those times represent just eating and preparing without dishes) Notes: For my next "vacation" I should definitely consider a portable smoke detector, so that I could be aware at least of the amount of smoke, so that I may try different solutions to reduce it, or may leave a room when it's high. For the time being I'll do my best with what I have to avoid the moke, but it seems that sniffing in some of it is still going to happen.
  17. Alright, I am sipping a morning coffee (bought from grocery store, not take out YAY!) That means I...can make the time to update my own journal topic--more on that below... Man, this is getting tiring/involved whatever. Setting timer for motivation. Remainder of Sunday, December 4th, 2022: Continued using up that bottle of wine. Started with two standard five ounce glasses, then thought I could use up "the little bit left" Yeah...that "little bit" was another entire five ounces, so I had three drinks that night As the alcohol's effects was lasting longer than expected, I walked to the nearby pizza place, bought some cheesy bread/breadstick things and eventually ate it all. Monday, December 5th, 2022: Telling my colleagues I would (also) not be attending dinner with them Wednesday did not go as expected. They...actually cared as to why. I ended up discussing in depth with the colleague that I trust in such matters. He really does "get it," the difference being that he moved on from the events of the past few years. My mind has not. Despite not accomplishing much critical customer work, I left work on time. I used up the other hard (alcoholic) lemonade single I had. Unlike last time, I felt more tired rather than the "f**k my limiting beliefs, I can do anything" effect I half-expected. Tuesday, December 7th, 2022: Actually ate food I cooked, albeit, the last of my seasoned chicken D: Will I actually get around to cooking more before my next meal? Quit work almost on time after prodding from that same colleague I could use an indicator to not start more involved types of work starting at 4 PM or something If I keep saying "I'll just work late today; I won't tomorrow," but then "something" happens, well...then I wonder how nothing has changed for years Wasted time fapping instead of doing anything with my life outside of work. Ironic, even when I have the time, I sabotage it out of habit? Is my subconscious really holding me back to that strong of an extent? Did not go for alcohol, which is good. Outside of the idea of making cocktails, the potential to accomplishing tasks is way higher when sober, even if the will or hope are not present. Despite no sleep pressure (4+ PM coffee), I was planning to attempt a sub-10 PM bedtime...until I heard bass heavy music from the apartment unit below my room. It wasn't technically quiet hours, and usually I am that loud one, so I rebooted my computer and replied to other's journal topics on this forum. However, the music stopped sometime after 10. I definitely stayed up beyond that. I am glad to participate in this community, but I still need to actually implement putting my health first. I have dinner with those colleagues tonight, so today is relatively scheduled. I'll need to get lunch before another work obligation...
  18. Day 4 + 5 Right now I am at a cafe with this Puerto Rican woman that is such a good vibe to hang with. Taking a moment now to get on here and just share from the heart how much richer social connection is in person vs online. I am really working to be more present to this and reminding myself this. Yesterday was a great day for me as I was able to get back into a flow of co-working with friends I have here on the island and have that morph into some fun after hours. Woke up early today and attended a men's group on the beach this morning. Went for a group run and did Breathwork. We then opened up the space to share our struggles and feelings around what we are all presently navigating. I came to a deep realization that I've been essentially counter balancing the habit of gaming with the very activities that are suggested to replace gaming with... but I haven't stopped gaming. Thus I haven't been able to fully unleash the power of these other activities because I do in times of boredom or stress at times still default to a mobile game. This is an exciting time for me as I really let go of that and continue to lean into the activities I can sense will replace my needs met by gaming. This desire for more community, connection, love and happiness that is so prevalent in the gaming community is something I know over time I can lean into and invite more gamers to share in the experiences that I am enjoying right now. Tonight I am going to a full moon ceremony on the beach where people from all over the island come and bring instruments and share in song and dance. I am looking forward to it so much right now. I've also got 3 live DJ sets starting Thursday and Friday... with out games all of this is now much more exciting and I feel more energy for it. I so appreciate hearing from some of you so thank you for your replies Resonant_Shell & Paul A. Resonant_Shell - I've always had a fear of initiating social contact... I know it stems from being in small private schools as a kid where I didn't meet a lot of new people and when I did it was a big deal/had a lot of social pressure. That said - I know this is such a big issue collectively now a days with social media and all these different ways to connect without actually having to physically go up to someone and initiate contact. I hope to continue to cultivate this skill sets as I know it's value and sense that it's something future generations need to relearn how to do with all this tech at our fingers. Keep up the comments, fam! So fueling!! May the force be with you all, -D
  19. 10000%. I don't understand how people can live with the phone flashing and beeping all the time. The phone is there for me; I am not there for the phone. I'm default invisible on my WA, the same with Facebook/Messenger.
  20. Keep up the good fight 🙂 I have setup a habit of simply being on all the social media for 15 minutes a day (including all messages on whatsapp etc.) For me it sticks for a couple of years. If I need someone critically before that time, I can always call them or they can call me. One more thing is to turn off as many notifications as you can, so as not to hear it and be triggered by it, aswell as when you open your lock screen. On whatsapp you can disable the blue V's, so that you wouldn't feel obligated to answer once you've viewed a message also. (Edit)P.S. I'm shaing those facts so that you may consider this way of coping perhaps instead of turning off the phone. Eventually anything will require for you to stick to it with discipline until you make it a habit, so consider which one of the ways is better for the long hall. Turning your phone off/doing what I said/Something different all together. Cheers!
  21. Entry 6.12 (Written on 7.12) Day 78: No Useless Videos Day 76: Sticking to Food schedule Top Priority: Not accomplished. Only eaten two and a half meals and made one tiny workout of half hour. 3 things I did right today, no matter how small: -A complete minimum run of half an hour -Attempting a new routine, which is painful because it's a way I'm unused to do it, and doing a workout in the evening is harder than in the morning, splitting it is harder then doing a complete one too. -Stopping myself at a certain point before feeling completely full when I ate dinner. 1 thing I could do better: Even if falling asleep after a big meal put an alarm clock at a certain time so as not to get to a state where I don't manage to eat dinner before 00 00 and might even miss the minimal workout. (Preferably not fall asleep at all of course. But I'm not gonna take a cold shower right after the meal (I need at least an hour apart, so as not to mess up digestion completely) Tomorrow's (Today's) top priority: Go to health consult office to see if my lifeguard certificate may be valid in Spain. (Fall back on two meals for today, since in any case I have overeaten yesterday) Notes: Will need to complete yesterday's workout, and hopefully a half hour run tomorrow together with tomorrow's workout. Stay hard Yan! Even though you've lost a couple of times and fell asleep like a b**ch, you may overcome this poisonous habit, and manage to do three meals or change the existing ones to healthy, not over volume amounts. One more thing, gotta take care not to spend a few hours on the forum. It's gotta be a tool for me, not a master. Though some extra time was needed to plan a routine change, take care not to overdo it.
  22. It is possible that this belief could be true. However, challenging it would likely prove to be extremely valuable, especially considering how specific it is. Have your mind and body been engaged in every single other possible activity? Module#4 in Cam's Respawn program and/or the GameQuitters Hobby Tool might help you explore such activities. Doing so can provide you with data for determining where gaming ranks in terms of consistent fun and satisfaction. Reading the rest of your post, I agree with Paul: At the very least, you have proven that you are able to prioritize your studies over gaming, even when still doing the latter. Anger and frustration might not hold as long-term motivators, but it seems you might already have a "why," wanting to respond to life with a drive towards a purpose, rather than escape. Beginning this detox can serve as your first step in aligning with such purpose!
  23. This is one of the primary reasons I decided against renewing my smartphone service early this year. It was hardly used for calls, but that realization led to questioning why I had one in the first place. Given, I still have a landline, and getting a flip phone for the car seems like a good idea. If, in keeping your phone off, you find yourself asking a similar question, consider assessing the overall value it brings to your life. If you find the cost of your attention outweighs your phone's benefits, perhaps it has outlived its useful purpose.
  24. Perhaps I sort of relate, but in resisting the idea of committing to a schedule outside of work. Recently attempting to start module #5, it is possible to overthink the calendar format itself, and it can be easy to avoid engaging with life after obligations if that is already a habit. Whoah, I guess we have a player in these forums I kid, but props to you for initiating a social interaction regardless! An airline flight could be a somewhat limiting environment for creation activities compared to consuming ones. Your destination might serve better for gauging how you are coping with your initial detox. Nonetheless, I hope you have fun with your organization process!
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