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Everything posted by ElectroNugget

  1. DAY 98: Today was the worst day I've had in quite a long time. I had a huge emotional slump today which feels like it came out of nowhere, which brought with it all the usual cognitive distortions, mental anguish and anxiety. Despite that, I got to work today and managed to perform the tasks I needed to for my freelance gig. I have another day's work tomorrow and that will help cover some of my expenses moving to Copenhagen (should pay for a nice new bed), so that's good. All that said, I'm in a lot of pain right now, and have felt like crying all day today. I'm really a bit overwhelmed with everything I have to do by the time I move to CPH, and I'm feeling lonely as usual. I am also concerned that ITU won't pan out, and 2 years from now I still won't have a clue what I'm supposed to do with my life. Quitting games was a huge first step towards change for me, but my whole life plan used to revolve around videogames: being an artist was, in large part, motivated by a desire to get into the games industry. Now I really don't want to be an artist professionally anymore or work in the games industry... I just feel lost. I have no clue if this next chapter is going to take me where I want to go. Do I really want to be learning programming and UX design? Nowadays, I look at a computer, or my iPad or my phone, once sources of joy, and see them as the enemy, things that rob me of time and sap my will to live. Nothing I once took comfort in has any value any more. To add to that, today I saw a post on Instagram from my ex saying that she's feeling a lot better than usual lately, which makes me feel like perhaps in our relationship I was bringing her down. That really hurt me. I've missed her and wanted to talk to her a lot lately, but now I feel like if I reached out I would just be bringing her down again. Perhaps she's even relieved I am gone. Perhaps she hates me. Have I sabotaged all my relationships with this darkness? I'm carrying around so much negative energy all the time and I don't know what to do with it. Any time that I do feel good seems to merely be an illusory respite from the swirling void beneath. Inevitably I am drawn back to it. Anyways, there's not much else to say. Today was really fucking shit. That's all.
  2. DAY 91-97: Today I got back from my holiday in Holland with the extended family, and I thought it was about time I pick up this journal again. There's been a lot of time to think and reflect about what I want to get next out of life, and also to analyze some new problems that have become more clear now that the first 90 days are over... So this will probably be a wall of text, more for my sake than anyone else. Overall it was a really good holiday! I have usually struggled a bit with family holidays in the past. My family is very much in the attitude of 'go out and do things every day' when we're on vacation, whereas I've always preferred to relax and have more downtime. I want to sleep in, read a book and play some board games, my family wants to spend 8hrs exploring the nearest city and seeing every possible tourist attraction. It doesn't help that I've always been an extreme night owl, and having to spend a lot of early mornings travelling, then sleeping in a strange bed, waking up early to screaming kids and then touring some strange new country on my feet every day... I usually get very grumpy and tired and end up feeling like I need my own break after a family vacation. 😄 While all of the above is still the case, I think I handled it a lot better this time and actively tried to participate more in things that I otherwise wouldn't have. I also tried to keep my mood in check and not bother my family as much with it as I did in the past, and overall I think it was a success. I know that I shouldn't suppress my negative emotions, but I'm also aware that they come and go, and I don't need to ruin everyone's day just because I'm feeling a bit crummy. Overall, we went and saw a lot of interesting stuff in Holland, and I spent a lot of time talking to family members and seeing the sights rather than just sleeping in and playing something on my Switch (which is what I would have done if I hadn't quit). I even went cycling for 20km one day with my uncle! That would never have happened a year ago. When my uncle offered to go for a ride to get some groceries, I was ready with all the usual excuses... But I've decided now to at least try and do things that might seem uncomfortable at first, because hey, I'm only gonna live once, and everything's at least worth a try. That got me far enough to get on the bicycle, and afterwards, I had a really fantastic time biking around the farmland with my uncle for about 90 mins. I haven't ridden a bicycle in at least 10 years but after this experience, I'm thinking I might get one to commute in Copenhagen... So conquering that small moment of discomfort was definitely worth it. There are still problems. I have a really unhealthy relationship with my iPad and phone. I'm still looking at porn every evening, especially when I feel bad. This was going well before my breakup, but resurged afterwards and I haven't been able to get it back under control. I also struggle to get to sleep at night without watching something on my iPad to fall asleep to. If I don't watch something, I think too much and get anxious. This is a real issue as it's affecting my sleep quality in a really bad way, and I'm sure it's making my night owl syndrome worse and impacting my mood and energy levels every day. On top of that, during the car drive home, I noticed that I spent the whole drive looking at Reddit and various other websites on my phone... Like 7hrs of just straight phone browsing, rather than perhaps reading a book or something. To be fair, long car drives can be really trying after a long holiday, but I still think it's a sign that overall the digital hygiene in my life still has a long way to go. On another note, I spent a lot of time board gaming while I was there, and I have some mixed feelings about that. I absolutely love board games, and to be honest, they were a fantastic way to spend some time with various family members. I finally bonded with my sister's new (and apparently quite serious) boyfriend by playing Arkham Horror with him for a few evenings, and 7 Wonders was another family favourite that got my dad, aunts and uncles and even my mom around the table playing and laughing. It's a great way to bring people together and have fun while being social. I think this is a really good aspect of games that I want to keep in my life. That said, I found that I have the same tendency to obsess over boardgames as I did videogames. I spent a lot of time looking at deck builds and cards for Arkham Horror on my phone every evening, and on the car drive home. So, I need to find a way to balance the fun I'm having without spending a lot of my waking hours thinking about them... Cause I think that could be just as problematic in some areas as videogames are. Luckily, I can't sit and play board games until 4 AM by myself every night, and they have a real social element which is valuable. But I still need to be alert to the way they impinge on my other free time. Maybe I will have to take a break from all forms of gaming at some point... I'm not sure. As a side note, during my holiday I closed the deal on an apartment in Copenhagen that I am really happy with. Funnily enough, it was one that I added to my list at the last minute before my trip to see all the apartments, where it ended up being my favourite. Secondly, yesterday I got a call to do some freelance illustration work for a company that I used to work for a few years ago. It's not my favourite thing in the world to do, but the pay is really good and the work is easy if somewhat boring. It sounds like I will get 1-2 weeks of full-time work for them now, which is great for me as it will bankroll my move to Copenhagen and fund some new furniture for my place and maybe even a laptop for my studies. So, I guess I have had a little luck recently. Nice to feel like the stars have aligned in my favour, if only for a moment. I'm still undecided about what major thing to tackle next. In the near future, I'd like to write up a list of longer-term goals for the next 2 years... Habits to break and new ones to build. I also need to make a list of things to do for the next month or so before I move to CPH... Maybe I'll post them here. This ended kind of rambly, there's still a lot on my mind. More tomorrow I guess!
  3. I did it! Made it to 90 days today. I can see this is just the beginning. There’s many more bad habits to kick, and new ones to build. But at least right now, I have absolutely no desire to go back. I’m still struggling with a lot of negative emotions, but at least I’m not hiding from them anymore, and I’m spending each day trying to recover rather than just whittling my life away in front of a computer. Really looking forward to hitting 180 days!
  4. Hit 90 today. My five points: Quitting started out being pretty hard, and became progressively easier as time passed. This gives me a lot of hope for quitting other things I consider to be very difficult to crack. The biggest initial takeaway was how my approach to time changed. In the past, if I had free time I’d just kill it on games pretty much instantly and without thinking about it. Now I’m learning to try and think about using my time in a more productive way, to invest in myself and my future. There’s still a long way to go in this department but it’s a start. Quitting games is only the first step. There’s so much more to learn, like how to be productive and get things done even when I don’t feel like it. I’ve learned how to break tasks down into the smallest possible parts so I can get them done one thing at a time. I can see how I used to use games to mask and manage my negative feelings. Now there’s a lot of them floating around that I have to earn to come to terms with, or to express in healthy ways at the gym or by meditating. Overall I can see this is just the first step and there’s still so much more to change about my life, but at least now I try to spend most of my time in the real world Honestly it’s been a weird day and I feel a bit down... but I guess there weren’t going to be any fireworks. This is just the beginning.
  5. DAY 89-90: Well, I did it. 90 days. Feels weird tbh, I know there wasn’t going to be any fireworks or anything, but it’s just another day y’know? I think at some point soon it would be good to sit down and reflect on what I’ve achieved in these past few months, so I can have a more positive perspective on it all, but today I’m feeling a bit down tbh. We spent many hours on the road today to get to Holland for a holiday with my extended family, and there was just a little too much time to think. I miss my ex, and I’m sad that she’s not here with us. I’m worried that despite my efforts to re-educate myself and get a better job, I will fail. I’m worried it’s too late for me. Hopefully a few days with the family will help. I also really want to make a concentrated effort to get back into meditating every day now, starting today before bed. I think when I get back next week I’ll try to do an inventory on this experience, and where to go next. For now I’ll just try to enjoy my family and my holiday.
  6. Good luck dude! It’s a bummer you slipped up but you seem to be taking all the right steps to rectify it and that’s what matters! Have you given your accounts up? I find the more distance you put between yourself and games, the easier it is to resist the temptation when it comes. My mom has changed the passwords to all of my gaming accounts. That way it’s pretty hard to get back to it.
  7. Quitzilla is great! Whenever I'm feeling tempted I check the timer, and since you can throw a widget onto your home screen you can make it fairly easy to see very often every day.
  8. That's tough man. To be honest, I'm also struggling to find the right social activity to fill that gap. Have you tried going to a boardgaming club? I've really gotten into that as it's allowed me to scratch the itch a little bit, without all the destructive side effects on my time and self-control. It's also a fun way to meet other people, even girls! 😄 Otherwise, I think any group activity where you do something together but the challenge is more the object than socializing is probably good. Hiking, rock climbing etc. I really wanna try rock climbing sometime soon. There's a clear goal there, and it's something you will do alone to begin with, but just by being part of a club or gym you will probably meet other people and can share your love of the activity together.
  9. Whaaaa dude! You slipped past 90 days without me noticing. Congrats man! Big achievement and I can see you're still going strong. Keep it up, man! Any big goals you're aiming for next?
  10. Good to have you with us Maddox! Keep us posted on your progress, I find writing here regularly keeps me accountable.
  11. I have had a lot of ups and downs over this journey, including days when I was completely lethargic. You might just have had a slow day. It happens. 🙂 Just don't go back to gaming! Even if you accomplish nothing else that day, that alone is progress!
  12. It's good to see you've read up and have a strategy for dealing with negative emotions. That's good. But it is definitely very difficult to always catch yourself and run through these steps, we only have so much mental energy, time and space to commit to policing our own thoughts. Have you tried meditation? I managed a two-week streak a while back that really helped me be more mindful in general and combat negative thoughts, without having to constantly police myself. Meditating frequently just led to a calmer state in general. Might be worth a try.
  13. Sorry to hear you're struggling man. As fawn said in an earlier post, quitting our typical escape methods means sometimes we have to cope with really awful feelings that we used to suppress, so it's natural there are some ups and downs. Take care of yourself, try not to be too hard on yourself when you do slip up on sports for example. You're still game free, and that's an achievement in itself, sports will come in time. Stick to your guns and keep fighting, and we'll be here if you need us.
  14. Great to see how your mental state has improved over time dude, and that you're reflecting on it. 90 days porn and game free is a huge achievement. Good work!
  15. Have you taken any steps to remove games from your environment? As long as it's easy to game, it's going to be nearly impossible to abstain in any meaningful way. Like an alcoholic does with alcohol, the first step you need to take is to remove videogames from your immediate surroundings, and put barriers up between yourself and them. I handed over my gaming accounts to my mom for example. They're still out there, but it would be at least a very awkward conversation to get back to gaming.
  16. You're aiming to finish a book every week? That's awesome, I need to try and do that. 😄 Keep it up!
  17. DAY 88: Wow, can't believe I'm nearly there. Today was a chilled day. More driving theory. Not sure I'll be able to finish the whole process before I move, but I've learned that I can carry my progress over to another school in Copenhagen, so my time wasn't wasted. In other words, things are coming together there. If I'm not too busy at uni I'll just find another driving school and get it finished later this year. After theory class, I spent the afternoon catching up on some sleep and packing for my trip to Holland next week. On Monday I'll be 90 days free, so crazy. I'm sure I'll have to write a nice reflective entry at that time. At this moment what I'm most looking forward to is hitting that milestone and figuring out what I want the next 90 days to be about. Tomorrow is a full day on First Aid for my driver's license and then I'm off with my parents in the evening to Holland for a big family reunion. I feel like I've been on my feet all week with little time to rest, but I guess that's a good thing. I've been very productive, and quite literally haven't had enough time to be sad or depressed. Come Monday, I'll have some time to relax, right when I hit the 90-day mark. 😄 Should be fun!
  18. DAY 86-87: Just got back and it's super late, so short entry for now. I got a place! It's really awesome, with a nice roommate in a new part of town. I'll be moving in on the 1st of August. All that hard work and stressing paid off in the end. I also got to explore the university campus a little bit. Things are starting to feel a little more real: before now ITU was far away, now I've been there and the wheels are in motion, I'm getting hopeful again. I'm looking forward to meeting new people, learning new skills and perhaps growing into a better version of myself. On top of that, Copenhagen seems like a really great city, definitely going to be cool to live there for two years. Maybe this can be the fresh start I've needed for so long.
  19. DAY 85: Only five days till I hit 90 days! How nuts is that? 😮 I'm super blasted right now, these past few days have been really stressful trying to arrange places in CPH, but in the end it seems my stress made me do my job TOO well, now I've got 6 places to see in the next two days, and I had to turn down quite a few others because I just had too many offers... So, I guess that's good? To be fair, I worked really hard on it and spent a lot of time on Monday and Tuesday on it. More than I usually would I think. So, I guess even though I did get all worked up, and it was really stressful and awful, I was still really productive, pushed through the pain and did what needed to be done. A good thing maybe? I just need to manage my fucking stress better. Today I meditated again for the first time in months and it felt really good, and then I went and made a full schedule for the rest of the week so I could lay out my tasks in a clear way, and that helped too... So yeah, I just need to make sure I do these things. And start doing them all the time, not just when I'm about to hit breaking point. So, off to Copenhagen tomorrow to look at these places! Hopefully one of them will stick, and then I'll basically be able to chill for the next month or so. Fingers crossed.
  20. I went through severe anxiety and panic attacks a while back that put me in hospital at one point! They're awful! But eventually I learned how to deal with the anxiety in my own terms. I still feel anxious sometimes but it's a lot better. All I can say is: exercise! That's a great start for me at least. When you're super anxious you have all this excess energy and adrenaline flowing through you, and it has to go somewhere. Either you can roll into a little ball in bed and let it express itself by driving your heart and brain into a frenzy, or you can get up and do fucking jumping jacks and burpees at 2AM until you're so out of breath you want to puke. Who gives a shit if you look or feel ridiculous, it'll make you feel better by channeling some of that energy elsewhere and tiring you out so you can calm the fuck down. Otherwise, therapy definitely helps. Do you know the serenity prayer? That got me through some tough spots.
  21. Welcome to the forums man! Good luck on your journey. It’s gonna be tough, but it will be very much worth it, trust me. 🙂
  22. Anxiety is super tough to deal with man, I wouldn’t wish it on anyone, so sorry to hear you have to battle with it. On the flip side, it sounds like you’re making progress in a lot of areas, so that’s great, keep it up and keep posting here. I find the accountability of the journal keeps me on track. Stay frosty.
  23. Keep fighting dude! I’m trying to adopt this mindset as well, nice to see it elsewhere. Good luck with your battle man.
  24. Boredom is part of the problem, but I think the real killer is that when we’re bored we tend to think, and thinking too much is never helpful. 😄 At least not in my case. I’ve realized that what I really miss about gaming, perhaps more than anything, is the ability to get into that flow state immediately and just forget who you are while playing. It’s learning to live with ourselves (and our thoughts) that’s so uncomfortable when we take that away. Don’t be afraid to draw in public! When I was at drawing school, we were encouraged to go out and draw from life as often as possible. Coffee shops are a great place to absorb a nice atmosphere, and you have loads of people you can draw in there. Naturally, some people will want to come over and see what you’re drawing, but that’s half the fun! And you’d be surprised how positive they’ll be about even very amateur work, most people are just really happy to see someone try to draw them. Now that I think about it, it’s really something I should do more.
  25. Care to expand on this @Ikar? This interests me. Think in what way? DAY 82 - 84: Sorry for the absence again guys, I’ve had a weird couple of days tbh. 😄 After I beat my 40hr goal I had to take a first aid course for my driving lesson on Sunday, so I had to get up really early again to get to the lesson on time. Then when I got there it turned out there had been a scheduling error, and the lesson was cancelled. Very annoying. Luckily I went and spent the rest of the day playing dnd with some friends as they had a session going, but with all the activity the past week, I ended up completely exhausted by the time I got home on Sunday, and have kind of coasted into this week in the same state. This week I decided I really need to get moving finding an apartment in Copenhagen. My course at the university starts on the 22nd of August, and Copenhagen is a notoriously difficult city to find student housing in. So I’ve spent the last two days in a haze clicking through Facebook and various online roommate sites, etc, trying to find a pad. It’s been very stressful! Everything else has kind of fallen by the wayside and I’ve stopped doing my good habits, my brain turned to mush by the stress of it all. This is just another example that I’m not very good at managing my stress when it comes. Usually I’d game to unwind, now I just get uptight and stop brushing my teeth and tidying up, etc. Clearly I need to learn to handle it better. So I’ll try to remember this when this saga is over. I’ve lined up a few places to visit which I’ll see Thursday and Friday, and I’m hoping I can close the deal on one of them. Then I won’t have to worry about it until next month when I actually have to move in, and I can enjoy the rest of the summer and finish my portfolio with peace of mind. I’ve decided that the next thing that has to go definitely has to be YouTube, Netflix and Reddit. And hopefully with that, electronics from the bedroom. I get to thinking it’s amazing how much time I spend on these things, when just twenty years ago none of this existed. Humans have done without the distractions of electronics most of their history, hopefully I can learn to do the same.
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