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No gaming or anything gaming related for 90 days.


jatinverma31
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I'm doing a 90 day detox from gaming, and I'm hoping that after these 90 days I'll have better understanding of gaming addiction, and after these 90 days I'll make the decision of whether to quit games forever, or try to game in moderation. There are some single player games that right now I feel I would like to complete. Let's see if I feel the same after 90 days.

In these 90 days I'll not play games, and will not read or watch anything game related. Not on yt, reddit, no more browsing news for gaming, or reading reviews. I will not talk with my cousin about gaming who talks about gaming, and will not go to his home to play games. Sounds easy, let's see if I can pull this off.

Ah! and yes, I am hoping that after these 90 days I'll have found new activities to do, because right now I have nothing else to do after taking out gaming from my life.

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Going on a 2 days digital detox to start these 90 days. I think it's important as it will allow me to slow down without getting sucked into anything else, like browsing internet for other mindless stuff. These 2 days I'll not use screens for any kind of entertainment. Not even for listening songs. No reading books either. I can only use screens for studying, and anything else that's absolutely essential. If I want to search something that's important but can wait, then I'll write it down, and search it in the evening.  This digital detox ends on Sunday.

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  • 2 weeks later...

It was my second day without it. In afternoon I went crazy. I couldn't think properly. I kept thinking about playing hollow knight and black flag. I haven't played those games much, but somehow i still kept thinking about them. So I decided I would sleep, and I kept laying at my bed, and I was unable to sleep the whole time. After 2 hours I got up and thought of watching an episode of wire since I wasn't in the mood of focusing and was feeling very irritated, so i thought it would be a good idea to not study, as it could lead me to go more crazy. But I couldn't watch it, I just didn't felt like it. So I closed my pc and got back to laying on my bed again. I didn't even went outside because it was hot outside. In evening things started to feel a little better when I went outside. Also I listened to some music and it made me feel better. I have realised music can be helpful as it eases my mood, but yeah, I have to be careful what I listen to. I played super mario galaxy soundtracks a little and that made me want to play the game just because the soundtrack is so great. That can be a trigger which I should avoid for some days. I still feel butterflies in my stomach thinking about tomorrow's afternoon. I am not sure what I'll do. I want to study more but im afternoons I just can't. Also I forgot to mention I had a headache almost all the time today, and was in bad mood mostly. This is brain fog. I have felt like this before when I have tried to quit games. When I'm like this I can't find things to do, and can't think of reasons to do anything. I just try to find escape from my real life. I hope it'll pass. This is kinda fun to be honest.

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So I have been having many urges, and I'm noticing how I find myself unable to think clearly for to what to do. At the same time, I tried thinking about the games, and I was surprised how clearly I was able to think. If I thought about playing the game, I could visualise to to great extent, I was even imagining enemies and what they were doing. I was coming up with strategies to use in games. And when I tried to think about doing something else to make the urge go away, headache. I have found that leaving the environment helps a lot, so I have been trying to leave my room, but I also hesitate with it because I'll eventually come back after 10-15 min to same environment and I start feeling those same urges. It's not like I can throw my PC, or smash my phone, which I really wanna do at this point.

 

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You're suffering from acute withdrawal symptoms. It does go away if you keep at it, I promise.

If you have public libraries where you live, go study there instead.
You may be able to find physical books on the topics you need to study, even if it's not the exact material you've been assigned it will help you along.
Most public libraries nowadays have computers too, which you can use for studying. 
If you don't have public libraries you may be able to substitute with a coffee shop or public park. 

It's very important to not keep yourself cooped up during this time. You're not on house arrest are you? You really genuinely NEED to get outside, it's a basic human need.
If you have extreme agoraphobia, get a therapist that will do Zoom, and work on exposure therapy with them.
Agoraphobia and video game addiction often come together, but in that case the agoraphobia needs to be treated first.

You also need new hobbies for your down time. I highly recommend something that will keep your hands busy: drawing, playing an instrument, knitting, journaling, knot tying, etc.
You can google "screenless hobbies" for even more examples. This is VERY important.
You have to find a replacement for gaming for your downtime, something you find genuinely enjoyable, that isn't bingeing on other screen-based media.

Welcome to the forum, I am rooting for you!

Edited by GrainSiloEnthusiast
typo
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On 9/4/2022 at 12:46 AM, GrainSiloEnthusiast said:

Thanks for helpful advice. If I talk about what I did last week, well I played games for some time. I couldn't handle those thoughts any longer then, but I'm back at it, and with even better understanding of my thoughts, I believe. This time I'm not seeing games as evil, because this week I had positive experience with gaming. I'm doing 90 break because I can't control myself from playing them. I'm hooked. There are some good games, but they are of no use to me if they stop me from becoming who I would love to be. Also, the thing you said about keeping my hands busy is very important to me, because I'm addicted to pressing keys, and expecting some kind of feedback when I move my fingers. In games, when I press buttons my player does movements, kills enemies and there is instant sound. I feel addicted to this instant feedback, and when taken away I really feel like moving my fingers and expecting to something happen. Sounds dumb but it's true in my case. That's why I impulsively download games on my phone, because I want something to happen, anything, whether I like it or not. That's why I like typing with vibration on on my phone.

Unfortunately i can't go outside for long periods of time, not even at library. Btw where I live there are only small study zones, or small library with books that students read to help them prepare for common exams. No books of my interest. But the reason I can't go library is that I don't wanna ask my parents for any additional money. I'm glad they are paying my uni fees. I'm gonna work on finding new hobbies, and hopefully I'll find one soon. Though I can't think of many options right now, but I'll do what you said and start with searching for them on google. It feels scary to think about doing something that doesn't involve screens. It really does, my heart knows.

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3 hours ago, jatinverma31 said:

But the reason I can't go library is that I don't wanna ask my parents for any additional money. I'm glad they are paying my uni fees

Hey. My advice is to find a job. I’ve been severely addicted to gaming for over 6 years. This summer I’ve got a job offer and it changed my life. Instead of sitting at home and being bored, not knowing what to do I’m now so busy that I don’t even think about playing again. Cravings do happen but I’m too busy to relapse. Still only 29 days clean but it’s my longest streak in years.

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Well, I would love to do a job, but I can't find a job that I would like. I had a chance recently but I couldn't get that job because I had to study for my exams. I just have to wait for next opportunity for now.

I played the game BombSquad on my phone today. I did it impulsively. I came back to my home in afternoon, and as soon as I took out my phone I downloaded BombSquad. I did it instantly and my mind gave no resistance. It's weird how I forget everything sometimes. I'm trying to come to this forum whenever i feel the irge to play games as this forum is helping me to be clear in those moments. Also, I'm noticing that I'm not just addicted to games, but I have this bad habit of keeping myself busy with activities that stops me from thinking or being bored. I would do anything, use internet mindlessly, listen music, or anything with my devices that allows me to keep my mind shut. I know a bad habit, but I can use this to my advantage. I'll allow myself to do activities that will allow me to not think about anything else and activities that are good for me in some way at the same time.

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Relapsed after 4 successful days. A short one. Only played for 15 min BS on my phone, but still, a relapse. Good thing I picked myself back up before going in a long gaming session. That way I could have ended up feeling miserable and playing for some more days. Just before I decided to quit gaming I had played hollow knight first time in my life. I have played it for only 12 hours, but I still keep thinking about it almost all the time. No matter what I'm doing I think about playing it. I'm controlling myself, and tell myself that I'm quitting games because they have this uncontrollable effect on me, but it's ridiculous. I am thinking that I may play and finish this game first, and then go on a 90 days detox. I know it sounds like a absolute bad idea, but this games is driving me nuts from last 2 weeks. What do you say? Please tell me something. The urges are really high.

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1 hour ago, rkalajian said:

It's best that you try and control your urges. They will fade over time, but you also need to keep your mind occupied in other ways.

You can do it!

I want to emphasize the same; be in control of your urges or they take control of you (even though you said that you are in control). Do you want to be controlled by something else than yourself? I bet you don't, because no one does. 

Relapsing is not as bad as it sounds. We are all people that represent the human race - and human race is notorious of making mistakes. Our race is also known to learn from them. It's really good that you recognized the point where it was time to stop after the relapse, because not everyone can pull that off. Many people will just let the sensation of gaming again get the better of them and that's where they end up playing for hours and hours for more than just a couple of days. I know because that is what happened to me last time.

I would question your urge to play this Hollow Knight game and your plan to detox after that. The reason being, you are just feeding the addiction and quitting gaming is not about feeding the addiction, it's about recognizing the addiction. Now, I don't know you at all so it's hard to tell but to me having thoughts or excuses like that to play a game, is a sign of an addiction and you don't want to feed it. I know it's hard to tell yourself "Ok just forget it and don't play it" but that is exactly that you have to face here and that's how you take control. The urges go away when you occupy yourself with other stuff to do.

I didn't write this to be mean or anything, just wanted to help by reminding 🙂 I hope you get back on track and just move on from the relapse. Well done so far, keep it going.

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On 9/14/2022 at 12:08 AM, jnp said:

I want to emphasize the same; be in control of your urges or they take control of you (even though you said that you are in control). Do you want to be controlled by something else than yourself? I bet you don't, because no one does. 

Relapsing is not as bad as it sounds. We are all people that represent the human race - and human race is notorious of making mistakes. Our race is also known to learn from them. It's really good that you recognized the point where it was time to stop after the relapse, because not everyone can pull that off. Many people will just let the sensation of gaming again get the better of them and that's where they end up playing for hours and hours for more than just a couple of days. I know because that is what happened to me last time.

I would question your urge to play this Hollow Knight game and your plan to detox after that. The reason being, you are just feeding the addiction and quitting gaming is not about feeding the addiction, it's about recognizing the addiction. Now, I don't know you at all so it's hard to tell but to me having thoughts or excuses like that to play a game, is a sign of an addiction and you don't want to feed it. I know it's hard to tell yourself "Ok just forget it and don't play it" but that is exactly that you have to face here and that's how you take control. The urges go away when you occupy yourself with other stuff to do.

I didn't write this to be mean or anything, just wanted to help by reminding 🙂 I hope you get back on track and just move on from the relapse. Well done so far, keep it going.

Thanks for your response. I took some time to think about it. I even played hollow knight for 1 hour to find out what's pulling me towards it. It was starting to become some mysterious source of pleasure in my head that I can't get. But this time I started a new save file, and played through the parts I have already played. Aaand I didn't enjoyed the game as much as I did it the first time. Yes, the visuals, music, controls and everything combined together was satisfying, but even after starting a new save file I couldn't experience it like I did it for the first time. I realised I enjoyed this game so much in my first try because I had no idea what I was getting into, and most of the time I was lost and had no idea of patterns, but with time and persistence I figured things out. I learned patterns of enemies. I was lost most of the time, but still I managed to find my way, and it was the 'figuring out' part that I had loved most. When I played the game this time I knew where to go, and what to expect. In just 1 hour I did the amount of things that had took me almost 5 hours in my first try. 

So I have decided. I can experience being lost in hallownest kingdom once these 90 days are over. As you said, I don't want to feed the addiction. And if I can't stop playing then I'm certainly addicted. That's why I have decided to face these urges, and work towards my life. And for hollow knight, you don't rush through the beautiful experiences like these. Also, I'm already starting to come to terms with normal pace of life.

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That sounds really good. Relapses kind of teach us just like that; when you are in the process of trying to quit, you become more responsive towards the adverse or "minus-side" feelings that once made you stop gaming. It's worth noticing that it's FAR BETTER to experience yourself fading out from the gaming world like this, than almost forcefully making yourself escape the addiction - let's say - by making yourself hate the games and the gaming industry itself. This really tells that you are on the positive learning path right now! 🙂

Also I am really glad that I could help! ^^

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