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Talby

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About Talby

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  • Birthday 05/31/1986

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  1. Day 76 World turned upside down by all this Coronavirus stuff, but I'm using it to smash through to the 90 days. Still haven't touched a game, although I think about it a lot. If I can't have all this free time (although I am still working from home full-time) and replace gaming with more meaningful pursuits, I figure I'll never do it. Although I can't go out much, I am exercising as much as is reasonable. I've been working a lot on my mental health, including going the The Chimp Paradox by Steve Peters again and taking it seriously this time (carrying it on for more than a few weeks and sticking with it). I still need to organise counselling but am uncertain of how it'll work under the current circumstances. I'd ideally wanted face to face, but if I can get some online help then I'll happily do it. Not much else to say really, getting closer to the goal. I'm finding more and more little things to change that are linked to my addictive behaviour and gaming, like spending ages flicking between shopping websites, twitter feeds and other pointless rubbish. Starting to work on removing those habits as I get closer to the detox goal. Hope everyone is ok with the strange goings on.
  2. Also how is everybody doing in general? Learning more about a lot of the stuff I posted above is keeping me very busy, amongst the usual life stuff and work. It helps me understand how to balance the different aspects of myself and keep to some routines in the hope of staying sane 😄😄
  3. Hi all, So I was a bit angry when I posted about this initially, and even though I'm here to get help I'm also here to be challenged so that I can think about things a little differently and start to move forward with things. I wasn't able to respond because I didn't know how people could disagree with how annoyed I was and at first I failed to see how it could be different for other people, but having spent some time away, I'm coming around to seeing how other people's experiences are different. It was really interesting that you made the point about being ex-streamers, I guess I never grew up with that. I'm not sure when it really became a 'thing', I only became aware of it back in 2014 when I started teaching junior school and a lot of the kids I came across wanted to be youtubers or twitch streamers. The social aspect of gaming for me existed for a few years when I was young, playing Diablo 2 or WoW when it first came out. After coming to university it vanished almost overnight, something else awoke in me and I've spent years trying to find new social experiences. Almost by accident I built a network of people I have come to love and respect through running, but we're all a little addictive and geeky in our own way. None of them game though, and although it eventually came out recently, I used to hide that I did it from friends and family because I was ashamed of it. Let me just say now, I don't think anybody should be ashamed of it if it doesn't cause problems with your life. As with all vices, the question of whether it's an addiction and measure of harm contains such grey areas, it's such a unique and individual experience that I wouldn't even dream of judging other people for their choices. I've seen some of the successful twitch streamers and they genuinely seem happy and fulfilled. I hope that they are because it looks like a ton of fun. The reason it's so difficult for me to grasp that side of gaming is because I've always had such positive factors in my life outside of it. Because I only ever chose to lose myself on the internet and in gaming when I was running away from my own fears, I never had a community of people to connect with. My relationship with gaming was exactly like that of an alcoholic, drug user, gambler...it was too painful and hurt too much to look inside and face my own fears, insecurities and intrusive thoughts, so I ran away from everything and everybody, even fellow gamers. The funny thing was I actually never felt like I was very good at any games, didn't compete online, didn't really have much success in MMORPGs or join communities...which I know was an extension of the problems I was escaping from. I'm actually much more competent at life outside gaming because I truly, genuinely care about it, whilst games to be are just a distraction to pass the time. And again, I'm not passing judgement because if my circumstances were different, if I had a ton of friends who were gamers and had a social side to it, I'm sure it would be a happy distraction. But I don't, and it's not. Some of my comments, such as "being bludgeoned again and again," or "some dude on youtube" were definitely made in anger, possibly whilst I was drinking on holiday and also without me really proofreading this and thinking about how it came across. If I go seeking those arguments then of course I'll find them. And I agree 100% with your statement about role models and parenting. Many of the kids I taught who idolised youtubers had poor family dynamics and I appreciate that many streamers might be a source of great comfort and joy for children and adults who maybe didn't have those relationships. This I understand, it stirs some feelings in me a little. The further discussion about what roles people in the family and how this affects family dynamics interests me a lot. Society obviously dominated the roles of parents within a family unit, what is more socially acceptable is what most people do. Yet I think the idea of fixed roles runs contrary to everything that is being discovered about the human brain. Thanks to Neuroscience and Psychology/Psychiatry, we know so much more about the brain and as such the concept of mind, which is really what this all comes down to. The evidence supports the theory that the cold, discipline focused father and warm, caring mother is essentially the animal aspect of our brain, the part that keeps us fed, watered, reproducing, defending our territory, attacking others etc. Generally this part of the brain in males is much more geared towards spatial awareness, finding multiple mates, solitude, hunting etc, whilst in females it's much more focused on maternal goals such as securing a strong, healthy single mate, developing relationships, multi-tasking (to reduce threats and risks to offspring) etc. This brain is extremely powerful and the first to react to challenges, threats and unknown circumstances. However, we humans have our pre-frontal cortex and related sections that form our humanity centre, where we use logic and rational thinking to build societies, seek alliances and achieve many other dreams and desires. It's this part that many respected psychiatrists are now claiming is the person we want to be and it's almost impossible to generalise across this aspect of people. When people break free of stereotypes, whether that be gender, race or age, it's this brain that is the driving force behind that. Almost counter intuitively, It's the person you want to be and also the person that you are right now. The problem is, we all have this primal brain that's much stronger, much quicker and much more aggressive that takes control when we often don't want or need it to. The trick to managing this part is to sit and develop the mind every day to remove the habits and beliefs that have been ingrained over years of nature and nurture. I believe that's where fixed gender roles comes from. Ingrained beliefs that have come from accumulated experiences. Whether people choose to accept them or not is entirely within their control, unless of course they live in a society where to dissent has severe consequences. Speaking as somebody from a democracy, I get to choose what my fatherhood will be like in the future. Of course I want to have discipline, security, routine, authority and be able to provide. But those drives aren't what I see as 'me', they're just the animal instincts that I know will help keep my family safe, teach them resilience and help them to be realistic about life. I also love to write, read, listen to music, run, debate and think deeply about things, all pastimes many people would describe as being 'warm' or 'feminine', but I'd like to be able to share that side of me with my children, regardless of what gender they are I could talk about this for hours, particularly as some of the work I've been alluding to is helping me to heal and reconcile the different aspects of my personality, recognising problems but not treating myself as a problem. I'd be interested to know people's thoughts.
  4. I also felt like that, however that's where I believe the problem lies. Gaming has become so much more than just a way to unwind and waste time. At least watching TV is passive, I feel like it has an end point, at some point I want to get up and walk away from it all. With gaming once I started I didn't want to do anything else because how can any other activity live up to the promise of a modern AAA game? I understand the social connection arguments around gaming, but I didn't have that. I shut myself away from people to game because I was escaping from some stuff, not sure what yet cause my counselling hasn't started. I made friends through hobbies outside of gaming when I was younger and my relationships with them only suffered when I retreated again. Personally, and this is purely opinion, I don't buy into the career talk and social side of gaming with twitch and YouTube. I know people are making money, I get that because every time I raise a concern I get bludgeoned with the same argument again and again. It feels very Hollywood, where everyone looks happy and putting on an awesome face because that's what they need to do to get the views, sponsors, donations etc. I'm happy for people who make something of it, they've clearly got a touch of the innovative about them coupled with a good support network. But I worry about the greater % hanging on their every word, just as with other celebrities in other industries. And that's the key for me. Nobody sees the reality of the rise to fame and glory. If articles encouraging people to increase their time gaming are going to pop up as 'advice' on websites that are supposed to be reputable, it makes them no better than clickbait in my eyes because every person's life is different. It's time you just can't get back and if you don't have families that essentially keep you whilst you indulge then you're risking an awful lot, particularly during a pandemic like this. I hope nobody thinks I'm being harsh. I'm very passionate about these issues from working with vulnerable kids and adults in the past. I'm happy gaming isn't stigmatised as much as it used to be when I was a kid, however at the same time I do feel that the current trend of it becoming so mainstream and high profile is only sucking more gullible people in with the simple aim of pumping as much money out of them as possible. Creating more addicts and leaving parents, carers, key workers etc at a loss when they're considered less of an authority than some dude on YouTube.
  5. Cool. Thanks for the discussion folks. I was pretty riled up that day so wanted some clear heads to help calm me down. Good to see different opinions and also hear how some people deal with hearing or seeing things that might trigger negative emotions linked to gaming. The problem I have with the tone and nature of it is that the more I get out and about again, the more I see gaming less as a hobby and more like watching TV, just a way of passing time without actually learning anything. So when somebody recommends people use their free time... It's like our national broadcaster just asked some kid to write an article which ended up being "Omg all the time to gamezzz..." and then stuck it on their home page. Grr. Made me angry. I also used to be a junior school teacher and met so many kids who just wanted to be a YouTube star and play games when they grew up. I guess my own problems tie into how I dealt with that emotionally as well. Thanks again for the counter views and support. You're a great bunch to have around to talk about this stuff 😉👍
  6. Sounds like you've got your routines sussed quite well even before Covid! You're at a place I'm working towards 😁
  7. https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/newsbeat-51907663 Now this might divide opinion and I know that Cam's approach, probably the best way of looking at it, is that gaming isn't inherently bad... But I find news articles like this, that actually appeared on the HOME PAGE of the BBC website, not just the news, entertainment or newsbeat section, but the root page...incredibly irresponsible. I guess it's more aimed at people who might otherwise have control and not spend hours upon hours gaming, or be trying to quit. But surely this outbreak is the perfect time to discover something new, something you haven't already tried or done. Spend more time with your family. I'm worried that people who do have control and aren't addicted might just end up gaming for hours because they have nothing to stop them, then struggle to make the transition back to everyday life after weeks at home used to not having any routines. I mean...the writer even uses the word obsession to describe how they feel about the new CoD. C'mon. I guess my message to people would be to not let things like this be the permission you have to slip back, give in and blame a major world event as an excuse to break your word to yourself and those around you. Stay strong, be vigilant and write about everything you've learnt about gaming, yourself and the world around you since you started this journey.
  8. Signing off with life's good is a great feeling. Glad the business has started brightly.
  9. I'd be interested once I've gotten deeper into the detox but I wouldn't want to splash all my personal life on tons of promotional material. I think if you're doing this for people who maybe don't know about the community or who do but don't always get time to read and post a lot, just hearing some else's voice talking about experiences that might be similar would be a big help. I don't see how the keeping a level of anonymity would detract at all from people connecting with the issues that get discussed. I'd be anxious that lots of promotional, personal material wouldn't work in the way that it has say for Cam. He's set up GQ to help people and speaks all over the world so tying his personal experiences and being open about it helps him achieve those goals, but I'd worry a lot of people on here might feel they have more to lose if they couldn't speak about it under the understanding that their identity remains that of their forum persona and isn't revealed to the world at large. Does that make sense? I'm speaking from personal experience here and don't want to be down on the idea cause I'd love to help out.
  10. Congratulations on the achievements everyone! 😁 For me February was a transition month. Moving through a process and from the darkness of the tunnel towards that pin prick of light. I reached my own personal milestone of 1 month off gaming, finally got a pay rise should have come last year and started looking for new jobs again. The lump sum I got helped me pay off my overdraft and have a bit of a buffer on my finances and it's nice to know I have more income going forward. I had a job interview that ultimately ended in rejection but was an important step in developing my confidence and some more strategies for getting out into the market again. I also started to let go of feeling that all my spare time had to be channeled into running and started writing much more frequently, paying more attention to my mind and working on that relationship. Doing yoga and core strength work more consistently has helped deal with this mini break and develop more focus. I'd like to keep that going for as long as possible. If I had to summarise February, it was when I started to let go of making all my decisions based on an expected outcome, realising there are very few instant rewards for doing things in the real world and made more connections with the process of learning/training.
  11. So after a few weeks going back and forth in my mind about whether I wanted to tell them or not, I finally got the courage to do it last night. They were so loving and supportive we actually managed to chat for hours, although I did most of the talking. I think what made the decision to tell them was that this has affected me since I was a child, therefore I wanted them to understand that I realise how bad it was back then and that I'm kicking it now. I'm glad I did because ultimately they had no idea that this was a problem. They thought I'd kicked it when I left home because I was portraying that everything was fine when I used to see them. It was really liberating to be honest about it, even to the extent that I was able to talk about the times that I'd lied to various people about what I was doing. That was as hard as opening up to my fiancée about it all. They were pleased I'm over halfway through the 90 days and made me aware that I can talk to them about it. I also started thinking about getting counselling just to help me discuss it impartially and also to chew up some time in the detox. They seemed quite keen that I do that so it was good to have their full support. So I'm celebrating taking a risk and being willing to make myself vulnerable to potential criticism or a telling off, neither of which came even remotely close to happening!
  12. @Xgamer that's a good one. Very appropriate for what we're all going through I think. Having a bit of a dark sense of humour can actually help with this if you can learn to laugh at some of the sillier stuff you might have done. I don't really like my job, there's good bits and it pays me enough to clear my debt and save for my family future, but it's pretty dull and I dislike the commute. It gets in the way of lots of things I'd like to do with life. Deep down I know that feeding my family and getting rid of debt are priority goals though. Maybe write down what you want out of your job, what are your goals for quitting and why do you want to do it?
  13. Your gratitude is more than enough and very welcome. It's brave of you to share and I hope to help any way I can, even if that means being silent and letting you be 😉 What's your favourite idiom so far?
  14. 500 days is amazing 😄 I think the last time I went that long was back when I first went to University and just threw myself into any new activity I could. Such carefree days! Good going mate, and the post was really insightful. Made me think a lot about my experiences.
  15. HI @Xgamer Nice to meet you and thanks for sharing your progress. I just wanted to pitch in and say I think you’re doing a great job, despite the fears and concerns you’ve been raising. In fact, I believe that those very fears and concerns are one of the most important parts of quitting something addictive. I know that I got lost in addiction because I didn’t feel capable of facing my fears, that it was easy to make progress and feel like something. But as I got older, I became more aware that those feelings were false and fleeting. I see it as a crap day off gaming is just another day off gaming, whether I achieved lots or relatively little. Like the others on here have put so eloquently, we’re only human and need downtime. I think for a lot of us addicted to something, our minds and bodies are sometimes out of sync. When one or the other gets too fatigued, it’s time to rest and that might mean a couple of hours in front of Netflix or watching some daft YouTube videos. Cam has a couple of good videos about relapse, about how sometimes it’s an important step forward because if it happens and you feel negative about it, that reinforces that you believe in the detox and believe in your broader choices. He’s also got some good stuff about losing yourself in the processes of hobbies to replace gaming, rather than focusing on the outcomes. One thing gaming has trained us all to do is obsess about reaching that next goal, hitting that next level and receiving the rewards. In real life, with sports, music, art, science etc…there are no instant rewards, there is only the process which might not make you feel better than you did when you started out. Where these activities really shine are in giving you ‘tangible’ things to write about. I find it difficult to do this often because it feels like the rest of the world doesn’t seem to care that you’re trying to improve in an activity. We’re competitive creatures at heart, no matter how much we like to project otherwise and judge others for being the same, so it’s sometime difficult to avoid the criticism of how good you are at something. A classic example is when people try to twist inclusion and participation in sport into a narrative about making everybody soft and destroying elite level performance. That kind of attitude has driven me away from running, something I love with all my soul, so many times because I’m only ever trying to get better than the person I am now and lose myself in the process. Luckily I’ve started learning how to process that kind of narrow minded drivel 😉 You can feel detached when you quit gaming because it seems like everybody is doing it at the moment, but stepping back and applying some rational thought will help you to see what it does to people who can’t control it and start to rise above those behaviours that you want to change. Finally, with regards to looking back and not feeling anything about your previous gaming habits…I’m right there with you. I sometimes look back and feel very guilty, that I could have made so much more of myself if I hadn’t had it. But there’s a big part of me now that’s accepting that I can’t time travel and do anything about it, so I’m actually grateful that I have all the experiences I do because they’ve made me the person I am now, the person who wants to make changes and get this under control. I hope some of this helps, more so because I feel right there in the wars with you. Treat each day like a battle. You won’t win them all, people rarely do, but you can win the war by learning from each slip-up and step-backwards. That’s what we’re all here for 😊
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