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Listen to Cam and James Discuss eSports In Episode 2 of Gaming the System!

sinirad

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  1. It's never too late friend, You sound like you're a student so it sounds like you're still young. I'm 31 years old and I've been playing games since before I can even remember, seriously my dad bought my mom an NES when it first came out. I just decided to quit yesterday, so it's safe to say I've been playing for a solid 25 years, longer than the age of some people on this forum! It's never too late. It sounds like you have already accepted defeat in a way. You don't believe you can accomplish what you've set out to accomplish, and if you do accomplish it, you're going to reward yourself with something that would negate your accomplishments. You talk about "rewarding" yourself but the way you talk about yourself makes it seem like you don't think you deserve a reward. Well let me tell you friend. You can accomplish whatever you set your mind to. I don't mean to get all wishy-washy on you, but before any change can happen in the real world, it has to happen in your mind. A man running a marathon who believes he can win may not win, but he sure as hell has a chance. A man running a marathon believing he will lose, will undoubtedly lose. As I said before, you came here for a reason in the first place, you had set an intention and so far for 63 days you've stuck to it. We're all going to have good days and bad days, but don't let that stop you from accomplishing what you set out do in your mind. There are lots of things you could do to reward yourself, but WoW isn't one of them. You know it, we know it, you don't want to go down that path. You know I used to identify as a "gamer" and defined myself by what I could do in the gaming world. But it's a sad and empty world that distracts us from our purpose. WoW shouldn't be your reward and it shouldn't define you. What do you want to be defined by? Stay strong friend! P.S I noticed under your depression goals you didn't feel like you accomplished social support. But in your journal entry you directly responded to my comment and sincerely addressed a feeling that you're unsure of and reached out to this forum. That's gotta count for something right? Because all of us here are rooting for you!
  2. You're absolutely right about the hard transition. I realize now that I'm going through a bit of a stressful time so the urge to game comes up even more because it's so much easier to log in and feel like I've accomplished something, only to log off and feel worse off than before, tempting me to play even more, but then hating myself even more! Causing that vicious cycle... I've also started some new types of exercise and they leave me feeling refreshed, motivated, and positive. We got this ?
  3. @Cam Adair Thanks for the motivation Cam! I'm definitely going to make an effort to post every day even if it's just a little Day 2 Leading up to introducing myself on this site, I was already feeling the empowerment of admitting I had an addiction and making the commitment to quitting video games. Day 1 came and went and I was on top of the world, reflecting, seeing clearly, on my way to detoxification! Here we are at day 2, and I've noticed how hard it is to sit with myself in silence. When I wasn't gaming, I was interacting with people at work, talking to students, spending time with my wife, exercising (while listening to video game music), and then when I had any sort of free time, my go-to activity was video games. Today I thought I would try some meditation and it was not at all easy. In the silence, I would close my eyes and get flashes of the video game which had prompted me to quit. I know this is all part of the process, and why I will need the 90 day detox to rewire my brain, but it's interesting to reflect on the fact of how uncomfortable I am with complete silence. As a teacher, I spend a lot of time grading things, correcting, and sometimes writing material. Even in those moments I would play some instrumental music, sometimes melodic rock, chillwave, or classical, but I never really do anything in silence. It's funny because sometimes a track with lyrics would come on and I would find that too distracting, but I was unable to eliminate the noise altogether and so I would play instrumental music instead, you'd think I would have stopped the music altogether! Even as I write this, I'm trying to do it without anything playing in the background and the experience is ... jarring. One of the things I'm also going to try to do going forward is continue to try to spend more time with myself in silence and let this stimulation withdrawal take its course. Now if only I could fall asleep...
  4. I know it's tempting, but why bother doing the detox if you're going to give in to WoW? Would you let an alcoholic celebrate with a bottle of tequila? Or give a drug addict some cocaine after completing his detox? I'm not saying drop the detox; I'm saying you have to ask yourself why did you start in the first place? It's the same reason why we're all here, these games provide momentary stimulation, but leave us with emptiness. I've been playing online games since 2006 and looking back now...I feel nothing but regret. There's always going to be another great game around the corner, and video game companies are just going to get better and better at making them and marketing them to their audience. Looking back now, no one cares how many maxed-level characters I had, how big my guild was, or all the achievements I earned. I think you came here for a reason in the first place. If you gave in to play WoW, it would give you some short term satisfaction, but just long term sadness. I say don't do it, stay strong!
  5. Gaming is why I haven't done more with my life Gaming is why I'm disappointed in myself Gaming is why I haven't learned all the skills I said would learn Gaming is why my business hasn't moved forward Gaming is why I can't write without distraction Gaming is why I can't afford to buy a house Gaming is why I can't afford to buy a car Gaming is why I haven't finished learning the languages I started learning Gaming is why I lost my athletic physique Gaming is why I feel ashamed when I look in the mirror Gaming is why I go to bed disappointed with what I had accomplished in that day Gaming will no longer ruin my life!
  6. Day 1 Here I am. My first day. I had actually stopped playing games a few days before but I didn't feel like it would really become real until I admitted to my friends and family that I had to stop gaming. Naturally, everyone was confused, it seemed like I had been able to manage a normal life and play games without a problem. But the problem was that I couldn't look in the mirror without feeling a tinge of disappointment. There are so many things I want to do with my life, but day in and day out I would get by going to work and doing my job, only to spend all my free time gaming. For a long time, I had been trying convince myself that I'd be able to play moderately, but its the games themselves that are the problem. I'm now realizing it actually doesn't matter what that magic number is of what is considered an appropriate amount of time to play games. All that time playing, is time that I could be doing something else. I really can't thank Cam enough for starting this community. I had struggled with trying to quit before and had always made a mental note that today would be the day! All my hopes and aspirations of breaking free were kept to myself and deep down inside at that time, I told myself I just needed to get it together in that moment, and then I could game again in moderation. For the first time ever I really feel empowered in my conviction to quit because it's something that I've put out there on this forum and in this universe. And it's nice to know that in this battle against our temptations, we're not alone!
  7. Hey man, I've been doing something that has worked wonders for me, and really changed the way I channel my energy and even build up negativity in general, which is something that happens less and less now as I find myself feeling less frustrated, angry, anxious, and depressed. It might work for you, it might not, but I see no harm in trying so why not give it a shot? What I'm talking about is: Writing. You might be wondering "that's it? Cam already told us to start a journal!" While I believe 100% in starting a journal on this forum, I also do some writing on the side which is just for me, and no one else. I think it's important to have a space for yourself where you can write, rant, vent, and reflect, without thinking about who's going to read this? Unlike the posts I make on this forum, when I'm writing for myself, I write by hand with a pen and paper and I let the thoughts flow from my mind to the blank page. Now there are a few writing activities that I recommend: 1) Write a freeflow journal - Anytime you're upset, or after you're upset, or you've come home from a bad day. Grab a pen and paper and write exactly how you feel. Sometimes I write the exact thoughts going through my mind like "WHAT THE HELL WAS HE THINKING!?" Sometimes I scribble in frustration, or draw little angry faces or what I think of some less than polite people. One important thing when you do this, is don't stop to think about "what" you should write, just write. Sometimes I'm thinking to myself "I really don't know how I should feel about that situation, or what to think about it but..." let yourself get into a flow, let those emotions move from your mind, to your, hand, to the blank canvas that is your page. Another rule that I have, is that you are never EVER are allowed to erase, or go back and cross something out. Why? I think this is an important part of the reflection process, sometimes I feel really bad that I thought someone was a bitch, or a jerk, and looking back at that moment a couple of days later, when I look at the page, I can see, sense, feel the anger coming out of the page, and I ask myself, why was I so angry in the first place? Sometimes I regret something I said, thought, or wrote, and I connect to my writing a couple of days later, and then I write about that, what was really going on? What was it that really upset me? From there, I could go into a whole other post about what we should do afterwards, but I think the important thing to truly understand our feelings, our energy, and where they all come from, is to transfer them outside of our body and into something physical, and for me, I can accomplish that with writing. Like I said, don't think about "what" or "how" you should write, just write! Sometimes when we confine ourselves to writing for an audience, we don't tap into how we really feel. Furthermore, when we sit down and say "I'm going to write a journal" sometimes that confines how we expect to interact with the page. But if you allow yourself to just feel and write, if you feel like spelling something incorrectly, if you feel like referring to yourself in the third person, if you feel like writing as if you're talking to the person, event, or object; just write! My second writing activity is something I've recently started doing and it to, has given me clarity and control over my emotions: 2) Personify ideas, emotions, events, or people into characters in a story. Again, this isn't for anyone else, it's just for you. I think to truly understand our feelings, we have to be able to look at them externally in some way. One way that I've been able to do that is by personifying different things and putting them into a fictional story. It doesn't matter if your story makes sense, is interesting, or if it's grammatically correct. Maybe someone said something that really ticked you off. Maybe that comment ticked you off because it represents a kind of stereotype that you're sick of hearing. Well what if that stereotype were represented by a dark wizard who slowly gains control by spreading his hatred through dark magic. How would a hero defeat this dark wizard? What if that nasty comment were personified as a vase? What would it look like? What would people say when they saw it? There is no wrong way to do this activity, forget what you learned in English class about stories that have to have a beginning, a middle, or an ending. It doesn't matter if no one else can see the connection between the thing that made you angry and what you described it as in your story. Don't even think about whether or not your writing is good or bad, just write! And again, see how you feel days after writing. Do you still feel the same a week later? A month? A year? Sometimes, having the ability look back and connect with how I felt in that moment really allows me to understand myself and what I was feeling. With that insight, I find I'm no able to identify the feelings and the energy around me in a way that I no longer feel like negativity is able to take control. Speaking of writing, I didn't mean to write a novel of a post! Hope this helps ?
  8. Hey man, Your story really resonates with me, I also started off enjoying console gaming and really lost it when I moved to online social games. Like you, I had formed a really meaningful and tight-knit community online, which was why it was so hard to turn my back on it. Years later, I always thought of "going back" to the game during tough times and I think the deceptively tempting sense of nostalgia always had an effect on me. Things were simple, fun, easily engaging, and meaningful back then, and with a present life that doesn't reflect what I want, it's so much easier to go back to those good old days. But it's a vicious cycle, because the more we try to go to back to the past, the unhappier we become in the present. I also have close friends who continue to game and I used to think I could game "moderately", but after joining this forum and watching a lot of Cam's videos, something I've realized is...even if I could game moderately, and even if others can do it, is it really going to contribute to my happiness? Moderate gaming in our lives would just be a slow drug that kills us slowly. You've definitely made the right choice by deciding to quit for good. Keep at it friend!
  9. sinirad

    -

    Hey man, I used to do the exact same thing. Especially since I played MMOs, it was very easy to eat and play at the same time. When I wasn't eating and playing, I would watch gaming videos as well. When I decided to quit gaming I found myself going to YouTube and watching different videos, but you know what? That in itself is a bad habit I realize. Even if I wasn't watching gaming videos, I ended up watching nonsense videos on YouTube which were just pointless, a meal that I was eating by myself, which should have taken 10 minutes now turned into an hour of wasted time watching pointless videos. Cam said it best, be present with yourself. What I've started doing in those moments where I'm cooking or eating and it feels kind of "empty" or silent, I play some classical music on my cd-player (not YouTube!!) and just enjoy the moment. I tell ya, it's really hard at first, but now I've come to enjoy those relaxing moments and some days I just enjoy the peace and quiet. I think our brains are used to being stimulated so it's nice to unwind.
  10. Thanks Cam! It's amazing how you have a video for every question! You're absolutely right. It's tough because some of these friends are people I've known since I was 10, so over 20 years of friendship, but you're definitely right about what a true friend is, I guess this will be the ultimate test!
  11. Thanks for taking the time to respond Cam. I also want to say thank you for creating this community and all the videos you've created. Right now it seems like no one really understands why I'm quitting and it's nice to know I'm not alone. I just read the article you linked and it really reaffirms my belief that there simply is no such thing as "gaming in moderation" at least for me. Do you have any advice about how to deal with the people who disagree with you? Especially when they're close friends? It's really hard because these are people I still care deeply about, but for them my decision just doesn't make any sense and I find myself constantly kindly denying their attempts to try and get me back in.
  12. Hello everyone, this post marks the very first time I've admitted out loud (at least in digital form) that I have a gaming addiction. Coming to this realization and admitting it publicly has been really difficult, and I still feel torn up about it, just because of my relationship with games, the relationships I've formed over games, and the person I've become. But this marks the very first day of a new chapter, and so I intend to start a daily journal here soon, but for now I'll begin with my story and how I got here. My very first contact with video games was from my mom's Nintendo. That's right, my mom's. My dad bought my mom the very first Nintendo console when it first came out in the 80s. I can't even remember the first game I played, but since I can remember, I do remember playing the NES classics with my mom and my older cousins. I grew up with video games and a family of gamers. Our weekend routine would be to go down to the video store and pick out a couple of games to play over the weekend. It became such a habit that sometimes after a few weeks, we had rented every game that that store had had, and we had to move on to the next rental place. We rented and bought so many games that my cousins and friends would come over to my house every weekend to either play them with me or watch me play them. Even now, those memories are filled with warmth and happiness and I can definitely see how they brought me to the unhappy place where I am now, but I can't deny how happy I was in that moment. I'm the oldest child with 3 siblings, two sisters and a brother. Growing up, we played a lot of video games together. When the N64 came around we spent hours playing 4 player games together getting excited, laughing the night away. Being the oldest, my siblings always looked up to me and seeing how immersed in video games we were, they looked up to how good I was in video games. At that time, if my friends or family had asked me to go outside and play, I was just as happy to do so, but when I had nothing to do I just played nintendo for hours on end. I never really could get enough of it, and I never seemed to get bored of the games I played. Even if I had beaten the game, I would just mess around with the things I could do, try to find bugs, or secrets, or give myself mini-challenges like doing an entire level without getting hit. Among my friends and family, they started to recognize me as “the video game guy.” Although this didn't have any negative connotations, I was always active as a kid so I was never overweight, I had a lot of friends and an easy time talking to people, so I was quite popular at school. I just became the cool kid on the block who had played practically every NES / SNES game available in that neighbourhood and was really good at games. As a kid, this definitely was a huge source of pride for me and it became a part of my identity. I had a subscription to nintendo power, nintendo merchandise, a huge collection of games. Other kids would call my house and ask for tips on how to beat this boss, or cheat codes. Some kids would claim that they were good at a certain game and my friends would retort “you're not as good as “him” (me)”, kids would come over to my house to try and challenge me and lose, I had my own little fan club. Despite the fact that I probably spent 20-30 hours a week playing games, nobody would have guessed that I was an addict, and I definitely didn't feel like an addict, because throughout elementary and high school my grades never slipped, I played sports, I had a lot of fun, and I was genuinely a happy kid, I just also happened to play a lot of video games but no one saw it as a problem back then. I started with the NES, and went on to the, SNES, Sega genesis, N64, playstation 1, playstation 2, and then PC gaming. Trouble hit in college when I started playing online games. Even when I had first started playing PC games, I had been really good at binge-playing and then getting stuff that I needed to get done, done. The first game that had really started to disrupt my unhealthy balance was Ragnarok online. A friend had introduced me to a private server and so we were able to play for free, and at this time one of my sisters had stopped gaming, but my other sister and brother still gamed and they played with me. Even before this, the three of us had really bonded over video games, and Ragnarok online took it to a whole new level. Eventually we got other friends to play with us and with me as the guild leader, started a guild with the majority of members being people we knew in real life, at one point even my mom played with us. For a year and a half this game became life. The alliances and rivalries between guilds and players became our drama, our romance, our comedy, everything. I spent every waking moment in Ragnarok online. Even at this time, people didn't realize I was addicted because I had always been into martial arts and so I still made an effort to dedicate some time to training (I was committed to the idea of “levelling up my body”) so I was still fit and had a lot of friends. Online and offline, friends would come to me and talk to me about their problems, their lives, their relationships and trusted me as someone they could get advice from. People in our guild started dating in real life, we would study together in guild chat, we even met up for barbecues in real life, it really was a blast. But for the first time my grades started to slip. I had always thought to myself that I was a smart person so I would always convince myself that I could get away with doing the bare minimum and I went from 90s A+ student to 60s just barely passing student. My girlfriend at the time started to notice how much time I was spending on Ragnarok, and was shocked how she didn't notice it before. “I think you're addicted” she said and I wasn't even angry, I just laughed at her. “How could I be addicted?” I have friends, I'm fit, people trust me, and rely on me, it didn't even dawn on me at the time. The first time I really failed at something was when I started to apply for University and was denied, because I had graduated with low grades. At the time I still didn't think this was because of all the video games I had been playing, instead I just thought “okay I need to work a little harder at this (level-up my mind).” I managed to get into a general program and dedicated more time to studying until I was able to switch. Even then I hadn't made the connection that I needed to play video games less, I just convinced myself that I needed to study more. But as soon as things started to go well again, some of my friends from Ragnarok had moved onto Guild Wars, and so as soon as it seemed like I had free time again, they encouraged me to join them there, and then the whole process continued. I'll fast forward a bit to today, because in between I would go through these cycles and manage to get stuff done and then just repeat the process. Today, I'm 31, married and working as a teacher and I finally have to admit that I am addicted to video games and I have been for a long time. I think the reason why it's so hard for me to admit that I'm addicted and why it took me so long to realize this is because I would look in the mirror and feel like I just don't fit the mould of someone who is an addict. I'm still fit, good-looking, I'm married, and as a teacher I'm admired by my colleagues and students, and I still fulfill that role as a person that people rely on. In a weird way, I think I've been a high-functioning addict. I'm very good at appearing like a “normal” person and I can get the stuff that I need to get done, done. But at the end of the day, whenever I have free time, or a moment to think to myself I'm just thinking about video games. A lot of people have tried to tell me that I'm not addicted, because I don't look like an addicted person, or I just play moderately. But the truth is, I wanted to do so much more with my life, and looking back now I think I could have done so much more with my life. I never dreamed of being a teacher, and I'm not trying to bash or put down people who are passionate teachers, but I definitely had wanted to do other things, but I managed to pull of the bare minimum and ended up here, and while some people might think my life is “not so bad” I've definitely reached a point where I can see clearly that games are no longer serving me, they're not making me happy, in fact they're making me sad. It's so hard to admit this because I grew up in a family of gamers, and while my mom and my sisters don't play video games any more, even though we're adults, my brother and I only really talk about video games and video game news. Some of my best friends still play video games and I feel like I'm betraying them. I know these people in real life and they're all good people, but they don't see the harm that video games cause me. Recently I've had opportunities to take on some jobs as a writer, which is something I actually do want to do. But when it came time to sit down and focus, all I could do was think about escaping to the world of video games. I had no problem going about the daily routine of teaching and doing the bare minimum to get through my day, but now that I actually have to take some creative initiative, I just can't do it, the urge to play is just too strong and I finally see how much it is, and has been holding me back. For the longest time, I also believed that I wasn't an addict and that I could play moderately but now I can finally see that I just can't live with video games anymore. I still haven't told the people closest to me that I'm going to quit. I plan to do that by the end of this week, and by next week I'll begin writing in my daily journal. If you made it this far through my post, I want to say that I truly thank you for taking the time to read my story. For the longest time I felt like admitting that I had a video game addiction was like admitting some kind of weakness or flaw, but even just writing it here feels empowering, like I've put something out there in the universe and that struggle that had been in my mind for so long doesn't have power over me anymore. I'm looking forward to becoming a part of this community. Thanks again for your time, Sini
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