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Jnp v2.0 (Daily journal)


jnp
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Day 1:

Yay, journal time again baby!

So around 15:00pm today marked the first 24 hours completely free of gaming since 2019 and COVID epidemic. 

Conveniently yesterday was the first of September which made me think that this is the perfect time to start this new journey and the 90-day detox. I hadn't been doing any school stuff (I'm studying computer science in the university) so today I decided to go to the university and get started with this year's work.

Well, it's a lot of work, I can tell you that 😄 But now it feels that I suddendly have all the time in the world to figure it out. Haha!

So as I opened all the materials and stuff and got started, I just noticed how freaking bad I am at concentrating at the moment. Like jeez.. My focus lasts for around 1 minute and I need a break after that. 

But you know what? It's still better than not doing anything in the past 3 years. And I know that this kind of concentration issues can arise from being exposed to video games multiple thousand hours in the last 3 years, and when you suddendly stop doing that. So it's all natural and (at least hopefully) will subside in the days or weeks to come. 

I know that these first 7-14 days are gonna be rough as hell. I have a list of activities though that I am going to be doing basically all the time - not leaving a lot of time for boredom & the void that gaming has left in my life. 

For someone curious about the activities, I'll be listing them here...

I'm a musician so I'll be playing guitar and bass a lot. I'll start going to the gym again. I'll start jogging slowly (around 3-5km at a time). I will be cycling to the uni. If I am really bored, I will play online chess (I would never consider this gaming! It's actually super demanding for your brain and is nothing like online games even though you play it online). I used to be a part of the local childrens' circus so I could start juggling again 😄 I'll be composing and writing more songs for my band and probably will watch some movies with my spouse. I also think that I could give a shot to learning how to draw stuff or to learn some more cooking (I am a lousy cook) but those are some things that probably will catch my interest after the hardest part of the detox, when I have more motivation for "more boring things". At least that is how I feel about most of these activities. 

But the most important thing is that I am now on the right path and I got started with all of this. I already feel a lot better about myself now that I have already done so many productive things today (in comparison to yesterday; I was feeling sick, tired and I loathed myself, not to mention all the guilty feelings after a bad gaming session again.) 

Each day I will be doing a little list/survey of cravings, mood, productiveness  and maybe later other things that come to mind... I'll be giving them points from 1 to 5, where 5 is the worst situation and 1 is the best. 

Hopefully there will not be many ranting days here but I am pretty sure that when the cravings kick in, things will got pretty real with that too 😄 

Cravings: 2/5

Mood: 4/5

Productiveness: 3/5

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Day 2:

One step farther than last time, when I quit! 😄

I wanted to do a morning post today. When I was still gaming, I would be more alert in the evenings and obviously that would cause me to procrastinate with sleep. Last night, though, I managed to pull over the blanket before midnight already, which is a big step forward on this journey. And things get even better from there: I actually felt a little relaxed and, even better, rested after waking up. I am pretty sure that my brain chemistry has been so messed up that this has caused me to have increased insomnia, anxiety and (over time) built-up stress. The only downside last night was that I was dreaming really vividly and all my dreams were about gaming. That was not something that I wanted to experience but at least they were just dreams. They just set up some pretty bad cravings this morning.

The aforementioned facts are again just a few more reasons that I REALLY needed to stop gaming and I was in need of help. Even at this very moment I am thinking about gaming in some form every 30 seconds or so and the cravings today are pretty intense, but deep down I still know that relapsing would be the worst thing that I could possibly do to myself and I am really glad that during these hard days I can manage to think like that. Last time it wasn't like this. Back then (like 2 years ago) I would immediately come up with reasons why gaming is "good" for me and for my psychic well being and that we only live once so I could just play video games if I feel that it's what I want to do... Even though the last sentence kind of has a point, I understand now that it would be the easy way out of the situation. I have so much more to accomplish and to pursue and gaming has been keeping me an arm's lenght away from it all for a good while now. Damn, I am so glad that I did all this now and that my mindset has changed to be like this. 

Last time when I quit gaming with a mindset like this was back in 2018 and I managed to pull off at least 6 months without games. If I did it back then, I can easily do it now too.

Today's to-do list is something like: play guitar and compose some cool riffs, play piano, go out for jogging OR to the gym, uni work; read a chapter (or more) of business lectures, probably go to the harbor to watch fireworks or something with spouse.

Hopefully the day's gonna be awesome 🙂 

Cravings (1= no cravings, 5= a lot of cravings): 4/5

Mood (1= feeling like crap, 5= feeling awesome): 3/5

Productiveness (1= procrastination, 5= very productive):3/5

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I can tell you’re on the right path. Your mindset and enthusiasm is seeping through the screen! Keep it up and you’re sure to make great progress.

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Day 3:

It's been 3 days already, time really flies 🙂

I slept really badly last night but overall I managed to get the day rolling pretty well. The bad sleep just seems to be a trigger to cravings because when I was still gaming, I was almost always tired. This morning I got to experience the void that gaming has left in my life. After breakfast I was pretty much autopiloting this morning and before quitting games breakfast was the point that I would usually start gaming from during the days. So today I had breakfast as usual and was immediately sucked to this tiny cloud of depression as I closed in on my old gaming station which now is just a desk that I use to doodle around in my notebooks and study on my laptop. Like, I remember so clearly that I would always start my gaming PC in the same way every day and even today I was so close to doing the same maneuvres! 

But again, this all just reminds me of the huge problem that I had in my life and as I'm writing this, I actually see and realize how much this helps in visualizing the extent of the problem.

Something else happened also...

Lately I haven't been too much into going to see my parents during weekends. In my "previous life" that was something that I was doing because I owe my parents a lot and... ahem.. they are, after all, my parents... So basically it's usually been just a chore to go there and nothing really fancy. I would always rush out from there in like an hour just to get back into gaming. 

This time it was different. We went there in the morning and I actually got back like 20mins ago. So we spent there like 5 hours just because we didn't have anything more important to do. I really enjoy the feeling that I get from seeing my family now. I also told them that I had stopped gaming and they were so, so happy for me and I could feel that the tension that would sometimes linger between us on our previous visits, was now instantly gone.

I really don't have a lot of plans for today but I am going to try doing some university work still and probably go jogging later in the evening or play some guitar or something..

Cravings: 4/5

Mood: 3/5

Productiveness: 2/5

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Day 4:

Damn, I got sick.

I woke up in the a.m hours to some pain on my earlobe. I went to sleep not long after taking a shower in the evening and must have gotten some nasty stuff into my ear when it was moist and pushed against the pillow. I should pay more attention into washing and drying my ears (I also have long hair atm which wets the ears even if I dry them) I was also feeling little feverish and nauseous as I woke up and it's been the same throughout the day. What a miserable day.

But at least I didn't think about gaming today. I don't really have energy to do anything at all so I'll just be waiting until it's bedtime and going to try getting a good night's sleep this time. 

Other than being sick, my day was completely nice though. We even went to see a new apartment and tomorrow is the day when we decide if we are gonna take it. If we decide to move, it will make our lives a bit easier in the long run (I hope).

Let's hope that tomorrow is a better day.

Cravings: 1/5

Mood: 1/5

Productiveness: 1/5

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Day 5:

Feeling a bit better than yesterday. Still really tired though and I think it has something to do with my thyroid condition. Has been really a pain in the a$$ in the last couple of years.

The gaming-themed dreams continue. I was actually so sure that I had really relapsed when I woke up this morning 😄 I had some vivid dreams about playing CSGO with my gaming friends... Who'd think that not too long ago I would deny having a gaming problem!? Good that they were only dreams though. Interestingly, cravings have somewhat subsided, at least when I am awake. I'm still pretty sure that they will hit me harder than ever at some point when I am feeling miserable or when I have failed something (like a future exam or something similar). It's good that at least subconsciously and through this journal, I am already ready for that in some way. 

Also since I've been MUCH more into music lately- both listening and playing myself - I found out how well a couple of lines of lyrics from one of my band's songs fit in to my situation at the moment. The lyrics for that song were obviously not made by me, but by our lead guitarist instead. The song is titled 'Who taught you?':

See me falling down
I'm crawling around
In circles in my mind
Hopeless and numb
It always feels the same
It just matters how long it lasts
The ones that leave are the Ones that give
It always feels the same
Even with an unfamiliar face
The ones that leave are the Ones that give
Who taught you how to live?

That would be me when I was still a gamer... The song consists of two parts and the latter would describe me now when I have moved on:

I'm still breathing, on my own
I have found my way back
Lessons learned in life
Fear of death gives me will to Live
Fear of death gives me will to Live

This also makes me shamelessly a bit proud of the progress that we have had with the band in the last 2 or 3 years. Outside gaming I wouldn't really have anything to be exceptionally proud of, but this is one thing that I really am proud of. Gaming just ate me from inside so much during the years and it made me become arrogant and... what ever is the opposite of humble? I wish I could become more humble. To the outside I must've been such an ass sometimes because I was expecting too much from a life that I wasn't even living to the fullest. Again more reasons to write this journal. You come up with self-reflection like all this. What a good day already! 🙂

Now back to studying for a business exam and probably gonna go outside in the evening to enjoy the (almost winter'ish) autumn weather. Also gotta make a practice plan for guitar and bass. So much to do, all of a sudden hehe 😄

 

Cravings: 2/5

Mood: 3/5

Productiveness: 3/5

Edited by jnp
grammar
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Day 6:

Physically feeling better already.

Got massive cravings this morning and yesterday evening. I was triggered by some WoW ads in YouTube and CSGO videos in Reddit. I ignored them. Also last night I didn't dream about gaming which is some nice variation to what it has been lately after quitting.

My biggest problem at the moment is the brain fog, problems with initiation, fatigue and big-time problems concentrating. These problems are part due to my thyroid disorder and probably also because of quitting gaming (both the psychic and physical symptoms can be really tough at first, I've read). 

I am currently sitting at the university hall trying to finish the last chapter before the first part-exam. I am closing towards the end little by little but it's definitely not fun at the moment with all these issues. I'm sure I will eventually manage all this, though.

Later today I am aiming to start practicing piano with notes, playing guitar (which I didn't do yesterday) and probably do some physical activity - even though I already get like 7-8km of cycling from this university trip. 

I am dreading the weekend because for the first time after quitting I will be alone for multiple days in a row. I hope I will be able to keep myself busy so that I am not tempted by gaming at any point. 

 

Cravings: 3/5

Mood: 3/5

Productiveness: 3/5

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It sounds like you're very self-aware of your feelings, which will go a long way into helping you stay sober. Being able to realize when you're craving, why you're craving, and why you currently feel as "foggy" as you do is excellent, and I'm sure you'll be successful in your journey!

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Day 7: 

First full week gaming free!

Best thing about today was that there were no cravings. I played piano A LOT, like 3-4 hours, on separate occasions today. It kept my mind busy. During the day I also took care of some errands that I would never have done during one, if I was gaming. The sense of accomplishment from today is pretty huge. It's a feeling that, when gaming, I encountered like just a handful of times in a year.

What's funny, is that now I have those feelings every day. 😉

As some kind of replacement to gaming, we've been watching the old Spider-Man movies with my spouse. It hasn't been binging though, just half a movie per evening. 

In general I am now more into movies and music than before. They were so boring when I was still gaming - which should probably be expected when you take into account everything that gaming does to your dopamine/reward system. 

Oh and yesterday I managed to pass my first exam. It was the first exam that I managed to pass in the last 3 years (not that I even tried many, I dropped off from the uni like 1,5 years ago anyway!) Nonetheless, this is still a matter of celebration for me and I sure as hell am gonna cherish this feeling of actual success.

This feeling is something so much more than achieving something after a grind in WoW, or achieving that higher rank in LoL or CSGO. Obviously I have many more exams to come this semester, but this is the start!

Tomorrow looking to go to the uni for lunch and some light studying and after that gonna do the basic music stuff with piano and guitar. Oh, and got my bass amp from a friend today so I wanna test it tomorrow 😛 

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Day 8: 

Realizations.

I was daydreaming (again) when I was studying. My mind brought me back through the events that last five'ish years held in them. I realized that I might have hurt myself even more than I knew possible. 

Imagine this for years: only working MAXIMUM of 2 months every year, the work being relatively easy and not necessarily even full-time. After that: eat outside home, play video games, order pizza, play more video games, go to a party with friends - drink beer. Watch porn. Get some bad-quality sleep. Repeat with most of the mentioned elements. 

And I've been wondering why I can't concentrate on anything. Why is it so hard to get excited about anything? Why am I DREADING boredom? Like, when things are about to get bored, I instantly go to surf something from the internet: Reddit, news, health articles, Instagram... Oh god..

All this just hit me so hard. I am a bit worried about all this, about what I have done to myself. I know that there is a cure and it's simply to avoid such activity in excess. I need a healthy lifestyle (such as my current one) with plenty of exercise, moderate amount of challenge to my brain and avoiding high-dopamine activities such as alcohol, gaming and porn. 

This is concerning but at the same time really rewarding to notice. Also I am glad that I have already began healing, because I took the necessary actions with video games. 

Today my goal is to hit the gym for the first time in months and do my new piano exercises. Also gonna test the bass amp and probably have a nice movie night with my girl 🙂 The "work" for today is pretty much done already, since I've been in the uni all day (albeit daydreaming but whatcha gonna do x) )

Cravings: 1/5

Mood: 2/5

Productiveness: 4/5, cuz went to uni to study even when tired.

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Days 9 and 10:

Nothing special yesterday, just a lot of piano practicing and HTML coding, which took all my time in the evening and thus I missed the post from yesterday.

Today however the day started with big news: our band is getting its first ever proper gig! I can't describe how excited we all are about this. We've been training hard for this for almost 3 years now. COVID made sure that we couldn't have any performances in the last 2 years or so...

I have to do a lot of Uni work in the next couple of days. There are like 3 courses with constant need of attention right now. But I think it's good that the schoolwork keeps my mind occupied. This morning I woke up to gaming cravings again so any distractions are good at the moment. 

One big bonus: on Friday's post I was talking about hitting the gym... I made it there! It didn't feel quite as refreshing as I hoped but it's a start. Planning to go again today, if my fatigue lessens a little towards the evening.

Also: YEEE 10 days without video games!

Cravings: 3/5

Mood: 2/5

Productiveness: 3/5

Edited by jnp
added a little celebration
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Day 11:

One word to describe this day: busy.

First I woke up too late, like 11:50am and I was supposed to go to a blood test. In the lab I was questioned because I didn't have a doctors referral. Ultimately, luckily, they drew the blood. 

What is concerning is that my blood work was fine and I still have this symptoms of terrible fatigue, anxiety etc. which make me wonder if there is truly something really badly wrong with me... Scheduling a doctor's appointment tomorrow. 

Afterwards I went to the university to study for 4 hours and came back home to study for almost another 4. Then we took a walk outside. My day was literally this simple, yet it was still so full of chaos and thinking. 

Good things about today: really productive studying-wise and I didn't really think about gaming at all, so no cravings. 

Let's see how I can get up tomorrow morning. I have to wake up pretty early and it's not one of my best qualities at the moment. 

Cravings: 0/5

Mood: 1/5 because general malaise, yet good blood tests

Productiveness: 4/5, because feeling sick and still getting things done really well

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Day 12:

I woke up really late again, but this time I got like some kind of a super-boost. Had some dreams about gaming again and as I woke up I thought that I had relapsed lol. But I was packed with energy for the day!

So I went to the uni as usual, did some HTML coding for the coursework for 4 hours and had a really delicious lunch (good nutrients, good everything - what a change to my diet lately)

At 4 pm I left uni and went back home by bike. I knew that I had a lot of energy so I hit the gym with my girlfriend. It was the workout of the year. Oh boy... I am so sore now and I know that tomorrow and the day after is gonna be pure agony!

In the evening I just prepared more food and played bass. Now it's 9:45 pm here and I am already feeling like catching some z's shortly. 

Tomorrow again to uni and some guitar stuff and so forth. 🙂

Cravings: 3/5

Mood: 4/5 because not tired today

Productiveness: 4/5 because went to the gym and stayed focused really well

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Day 13:

Change is in the air. Let me share a huge revelation that occurred to me today.

Today I felt the change hit me for the first time. It's been almost 2 weeks now. Initially after quitting, I would repeat - almost mantra-like - something like "You don't want to touch video games ever again" or "You will ruin your life with gaming, move on already!". Today was the point, where those thoughts became automated, kind of, for the first time. That is a good thing, it takes a lot of attention away from staying off of games but it has a downside as well. Let me explain. 

When you stop gaming, there is a surprisingly high amount of attention being used in many different ways to remind yourself not to game. It might go into avoiding triggers like ads, YT videos, articles etc. In my head these thoughts initially gather around and I make them work in my own way. Everyone knows the basic martial arts fighting stance where you hold your knuckles up waiting for your opponent to punch to your defense. That's how I see these mantra-like thoughts. 

After some time, that fighting stance wears off. Not completely, but it's not there 24/7 any more. The downside to the above facts is that when this fighting stance is in the off-position, you start to create scenes in your head where you "offer your little finger to the demon". So basically you start to question, if you are on the right path or not. There is a fine line between cravings and these feelings; today when I had a sensation like this, I didn't recognize it as a craving sensation, it was something else. That was weird. 

Honestly, I immediately started thinking if I am giving in to the addiction again and I started feeling a little down. 

But then I noticed something. This is purely subjective, but I found out that for me, keeping up this "fighting stance" actually had made the inner will to quit gaming for good stronger. So this time when I was hit with those feelings, I could immediately tell them back "Nope, you are not getting me. I am stronger this time and my goals and visions for the future of my dreams are within my reach now. It's just up to me to fulfill them. It might take some work and dedication. It takes some bad days, sweat, exercising and failing exams to reach but I can do it!". 

And the thoughts faded. 

 

Cravings: 2/5

Mood: 3/5

Productiveness: 4/5

 

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So happy you're making progress! There are definitely phases where the cravings change character and you feel like addiction is no longer there... But it takes so much longer to wear off, unfortunately, and it's important to persist on the detox 🙂

I've had multiple points (about 7 months into the detox, for example) where I also experienced something that wasn't quite a craving... As soon as I'd start playing, convinced that because it didn't feel like a craving things would be fine, addiction would make a return. 

Keep at it!

Edited by Pochatok
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On 9/15/2022 at 4:24 AM, Pochatok said:

As soon as I'd start playing, convinced that because it didn't feel like a craving things would be fine, addiction would make a return. 

Many good points in your reply but mostly, thanks for this one! 🙂 

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Days 14-16:

Nothing much really happened during these three days, I've been feeling a little down and probably that's why I also forgot to post here. There was one incident today though, which felt pretty rewarding afterwards. Also a little self-reflection here and there.

I am really feeling that I've moved into a different phase of recovery or it might be the phenomenon that comes and goes when seasons change and it gets darker. I've been constantly craving to play something, it's not even any particular game. But I would just like to sink my time and attention into something that makes me forget everything that is happening in life for a moment. Aside from my health, there is nothing even wrong with my life at this moment.

During the last three days, I was tempted to get my PC from the closet at least 5 times. Every time I decided that I wouldn't even stay inside our apartment to let the feeling pass - because I know that the urges are usually really short in length for me - but I would rather go outside with my spouse to forget the urges in a completely different environment with some fresh air. 

Today those urges were at their maximum because I got my blood work back from the lab and the results were a bit concerning, like not way off the charts but not normal either. It seems like I've been having some viral infection or something...? Obviously I started Googling a lot (it never brings anything good to you when it's related to your health :D) and the only results were pointing towards something like: "Lymphoma, chronic lymphatic leukemia, HIV" and what other disease deadlier than the other... I can tell you that reading something like that is far from making you relax about the situation, even though you get "information". 

That was when I was at a trigger point. I was in a situation that I desperately wanted out of. I wanted to forget everything that I had just learned and I wanted to get the blood work results out of my head. For a moment I was almost begging my spouse to let me play something on a PC for just a moment so that I could escape from all this. My financial situation also kinda sucks after today (had to get some music gear for next week's gig) so I was getting stress from that as well. 

I wish that I could share how I prevented relapsing but I can't. I really can't tell how I managed to just push away the thoughts and carry on. My willpower is not that strong and I am known to be a very self-deceptive and self-sabotaging person. I guess I just took my guitar and started doodle-practicing (new term for mindlessly playing medium hard guitar parts with brains on idle xD) Eric Johnson's Cliffs of Dover. I did that for maybe like one and half an hour and after that I was pretty much in a better state of mind. So I guess I could say that I just found some distraction almost as strong as gaming and took advantage of it. Or maybe I have truly learned something about my urges finally, because honestly I don't even remember what gaming feels like any more. And it's been only a bit over two weeks without gaming!

I hope that this even slightly motivates anyone reading this. At least writing it down like this eased my mind a little. 

Tomorrow my goal is to catch up with uni work, it's now been 3 days without even looking at my assignments. 

 

Cravings: 4/5

Mood: 2/5

Productiveness: 1/5

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Day 17:

Hobby-wise it was a really productive Sunday. I kind of restored a country rock song that I composed over a year ago and it turned out to be pretty nice. Now I just hope that the dudes in my band like it as well!

Didn't have a lot of urges to play anything today, which is progression. I am still trying to get started on uni work and I still have a couple of hours before the night settles in...

Tomorrow I am hoping to have a bit more active day... It's so much dependent on my sleep quality these days. I've had so much anxiety since stopping gaming that things like staying active and moving my butt around have become a bit difficult. But I guess that is the price that I have to pay to become healthy little by little. 

Next week is gonna be so exciting because of our (band) gig. I still have a lot to catch up with my bass playing before that but luckily I now have the time and willingness to practice at least a bit every day - thanks to quitting gaming.

 

Cravings: 2/5

Mood: 3/5

Productiveness: 2/5

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Days 18-19:

I wonder what was so important yesterday that I didn't have time to write this journal 😄

Well. Not much happened yesterday and today. Yesterday I spent the whole day at home. I re-recorded one song that I was talking about in a previous post and it took me the whole day. After that I was still playing guitar for some hours! I guess music is really like therapy to me.

Today I decided to go to the university to at least have lunch... and well. I had lunch there and that's about it. 😄 But I really like that I actually went there and didn't stay home.

After that I was feeling a bit weak. These anxiety/fatigue/hypothyroid/who-knows-what symptoms are really taking their toll... 

Occasionally I have thought that if it's this hard for me to cope with these feelings and sensations, I should just give in and start gaming again... But then I think about this: would it really take care about those problems? 

I mean, sure, for a while I would probably feel better but those sensations and symptoms would linger with me and in the worst case scenario I could even ignore them as I get more and more depressed while gaming. 

Nope, not gonna happen. 

But honestly, I really wish that time would pass on a bit faster so that I get to speak to a doctor. It would take such a huge burden off my shoulders to know that everything is okay with my health and it's only a temporary issue with my thyroid gland or that I have some kind of anxiety disorder. 

It's sad but it feels that because of these health issues, my new life without games can't even begin properly because it feels so difficult to get up and moving. 

No plans for tomorrow yet. Can't really think too much forward because I might feel ok now and I might feel like a total wreck when I wake up or get home from the uni etc. It sucks a lot.

I so so hope that it gets better soon... 

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Day 20:

DAY 20!? Already?! Time flies.

Today was a somewhat important day. It's weird to say that the day was important because I FELT GOOD for the first time in many many days. There was also an important phone call that I will tell you about shortly below.

I woke up fresh. First of all, that hasn't happened in such a long time that I don't even have a memory of the last time. I went to bed semi-early last night and I didn't use my phone at all - which I usually have done every night to be honest. Seems to me that I have to break that habit as well. After I got up I had a nice breakfast without any issues with my appetite. That's another wonder for the week, what's happening? 😄 

At midday, I had scheduled a phone call with my support person from an organization that is giving free education and kind of phone therapy on game moderation/quitting in my country. A little story about the whole thing.

So when I was still gaming and I started experiencing symptoms of depression that were obviously caused by my gaming habits, I started googling for something like "how to moderate gaming" or "how to quit gaming". I ran into this service which offered a program that lasts for one year. The program and the service is funded by the social and health ministry of Finland. The program starts with a period of 8 weeks, when each week you have an assignment to complete, along with a survey. The assignments go by themes, so each week it will be different and will be somewhat following the theme of the last week. The surveys stay the same every week. After completing the tasks and the survey, a phone call will be arranged each week with your contact person and you will talk about the tasks and their themes for the week. After that you will go through, if or when anything improved in your gaming behavior from the last week and if there is something that one would like to "spit out", like if there's something bothering them with the program or something. And yep, it's completely free and you can hop out whenever you feel like it. That's a neat system and I really wish that every country had something similar. I feel that I am privileged to have a service like this within my reach.

Today was my first "surveillance call". It means that 3 months ago I was finished with the 8-week intensive period. The surveillance calls will be arranged first after 3 months, then after 6 and finally after 9 months. Over all you have 3 surveillance calls to use and you have to use them during the 12 months period after you start the program. 

In today's call I surprised my contact person by telling her that I had gone cold-turkey with stopping gaming and she was astonished. We then proceeded to talk about everything that had led to me quitting gaming and I made so many breakthroughs in my thinking. I could actually feel my chest releasing a lot of the pressure that had been gathering there over these few weeks. I concretely let out every fact and thought that had led to me quitting gaming and it felt GREAT! The anxiety - not all of it, but a lot of it - was being let out of me and finally my thoughts about my reasoning to quit and build a new life, started to shine more bright than ever. 

The call lasted for almost 2 hours. I got to speak it all out. At first I thought that my contact was not pleased with the decision because the whole point of the program was to make your gaming habits healthy and more manageable, but I had instead taken the "easy way out" and quit. As I was explaining myself to her, it became clear for both of us that I had done the right thing indeed. When I told her in these words "... all this led to me quitting games and I am proud of the decision. I would never even consider another alternative and thank god you didn't contact me when I was in my worst spot with my gaming habits, because that might have led to me prolonging the situation and my gaming problem wouldn't have resolved yet at all. I will 100% stand with my decision and that's the best decision that I have made during my whole adulthood...".

When that last part came out of my mouth, I was almost in tears. The power of the words was so immersive and wholesome and it came directly from my heart. I got so much more willpower to stay clear of video games and everything related to them and I really needed it during these hard times. There were also some other remarkable moments of realization and epiphany during the call and I might share something about them in some future journal posts. 

After the call I just went to the university, had lunch and had the best programming session in a while. Also the food was good there again.

And because the food was good and there was enough of it, I headed to the gym immediately after reaching home. I had the best workout in weeks. 

I bet that all the people that saw me today were thinking that I was under the influence of something because of how happy I must have looked. Well, I was intoxicated with happiness. Finally it was a good day.

 

PS. I might make a thread elsewhere about The Program here in Gamequitters. I just have to find the correct place for that first. 

 

 

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Days 21-24:

It was an exciting bout of music, traveling and happy reunion. 

My band had it's first official gig as a headliner. The gig was fine and we really nailed it and had a ton of fun there but I only wish there were more audience at the venue. But well, it's bound to be like this for a while... At least we got to play.

I haven't even been thinking about gaming at all during the last 3 days. 

My anxiety levels have been pretty much uncontrollable lately, due to my medication and this ongoing life-situation. Currently I am taking steps into learning to meditate properly. So far it has given me some relief. 

In the coming week I will be trying to quit coffee. I am already having some headaches after 1 day of not consuming caffeine. This morning I already moved into drinking small amounts of panax ginseng. Kind of gives the same refreshing effects in the morning. 

I got a plenty of things done during these 3 days, but mostly it was about hosting a guest at our place, watching a couple of movies and traveling for the gig. 

Hoping for another great week now!

 

Cravings: 1/5

Mood: 2/5, because anxiety/irritability

Productiveness 3/5

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