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Journal - Road to a New Life


JuMpZ

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Day #10/90

I got to walk for a long amount of time today, alongside a friend of mine who went down the same journey of quitting games. We spent the entire time talking about how we want to live our lives and what it is we're both doing to try and get there. I would say he's the friend who understands my current journey most out of all my friends, and I really appreciate him for his guidance throughout the years.

Afterwards, I spent time with my sister and a friend of hers, just having a good time eating and being out and about. My sister told me that she wanted to spend the final days of my break with me so I spent most of today doing so. Plans have also changed regarding my departure from my mother's place, and I'll be sticking around a little longer before having to go back to my place near campus.

Although I didn't get to work on hardly any artwork today, I would still call today highly productive. I got to spend a lot of time self-reflecting and bouncing those ideas off a friend. I'd say it was a very insightful day, and I look forward to seeing how much I'll transform over the course of this year.

I'd say it was a good day.

What I'm thankful for:

My warm clothes

Goals for Day #11:

Run with a friend of mine at a trail nearby.

Continue working on portfolio related artwork.

Break the ice with certain peers and do some art alongside them; start being plugged into a community outside of video games.

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I don't quite have a strategy to address this sensation yet. However I do know the moment my body touches my bed, I feel like I'm being sucked into a void, so I'll probably try and be more conscientious about the simple decision of laying in bed for "just 5 minutes."

On 1/11/2024 at 1:18 PM, Pochatok said:

Oh, essentially most of my "personal" time between age of 10 and 20... Best of luck working through that, it may be a long journey, but every step forward is a breath of fresher air. 

What has been helpful to you in terms of working through this feeling of being stuck, or do you not yet have a strategy?

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Day #11/90

I met up with an old friend of mine I haven't caught up with in over a year. We spent the majority of today walking, running, and talking to one another about a ton of things. Im exhausted, we definitely went over the 7 mile mark today, with breaks. He brought me over to his place and then we went to a local deli to eat some sandwiches together.

We were reminiscing a lot, talking about our years in high school among many other things. It was a great time. It felt nice being outside for that long, after being holed up indoors for far too long.

I got to work on some artwork when I got home, and here I am now still doing that as I type this entry. Tomorrow my family is going out of town, so I'm going to plan on bringing some art supplies and do some studies while we're out and about. I enjoyed today for sure.

Things I'm thankful for:

My vision. I definitely love being able to see the beauty of my surroundings.

Goals for Day #12:

Spend quality time with the family and get some sketchbooking done!

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Day #12/90

Had a change of plans and ended up spending time with just my sister. We drove out a couple hours to a mall and I spent some time with her at an arcade and walking around the mall. We went to an Italian place and had some pasta. Afterwards we spent some time at home watching random videos together. Seems like she wants to make the most of my last days here at my mother's place, and I'm more than happy to oblige. Did a bit of sketchbooking, but not a lot; I'm finding myself getting too caught up in the process and I really need to loosen up more.

What I'm thankful for:

Music

Goals for Day #13:

Take a walk in the morning.

Work on some more portfolio related artwork.

Work on some personal artwork for fun.

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Day #13/90

I spent even more time with the family today, and did some more sketching with a looser approach. I'm so caught up in the idea of a perfect sketch when I should just be enjoying the feeling of putting ink on paper. It's a hard adjustment to make but I think letting go of my perfectionist qualities will improve my skills, as counterintuitive as that feels...

I worked a good amount on my animation work today, so that was neat. Didn't really feel the painting projects today, but that's alright.

What I'm thankful for:

The cold weather. Bundling up is great.

Goals for Day #14:

Another walk in the morning.

Continue animation projects.

Continue painting projects.

Start doing some research on beginner keyboard lessons. Gonna try a new hobby.

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Day #14/90

2 weeks into the detox, and I gotta say, other than some mild urges to consume game related content, I haven't felt inclined to bring games back into my day to day life. Some of my friends still like talking about gaming with me, but I try not to think much of it. I've been trying to put more time into the projects that I have put off for years now, mostly sprite animation projects. I may or may not show some progress in here sometime, only time will tell.

Something I've noticed is my lack of energy might be a result of my diet. I may have dropped video games for a couple weeks now, but my diet is abysmal, and I am about 50 pounds overweight. I am the most out of shape I've ever been in my life, and I know I'm capable of fixing that, but I gotta stop stalling.

Today was pretty slow overall, but I am satisfied with the amount of work I got done. The only thing I feel mildly upset about is my lack of initiative in doing research on learning some keyboard. I'm hoping to at least introduce myself to something before my studies start on the 24th.

I'd say overall it's been a good day though. Tomorrow will be cut short due to having to stick with my mother while she drops my uncle off at an airport in the evening. I'm going to ensure she doesn't deal with the late night traffic alone.

Things I'm thankful for:

The internet being an endless resource, especially as an artist trying to find his way.

Goals for Day #15:

Take the morning walk.

Work on portfolio related artwork.

Continue animating.

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Day #15/90

Okay, so I got REALLY carried away with time. It's really late and at this rate I'll be up at noon tomorrow... gotta say though, I'm actually glad to say it's because I got so invested in my sprite animation. First time in a long while I'm  up this late outside of school due to something other than games.

I spent a lot of time today fine tuning my drawing for a painting, and after receiving critique from some peers, I'm on my way to finally applying paint to the project. Just gotta be sure I get some tracing paper and save the drawing in case I screw the painting up.

My day kinda ended early due to having to accompany my mother while dropping my uncle off at the airport. Tons of time got sucked out of my day from that but I guess I unhealthily made it up by staying up until 5am...

I won't make this a habit. I'll definitely be more on point with my sleep schedule. I'm not sure if this file is too large, but I'll likely post my progress on my sprite animation.

What I'm thankful for:

My passion for art never dying down even after experiencing high stress from art school.

Goals for Day #16:

Walk in the morning... or afternoon.

Start underpainting of aforementioned painting project.

Continue animating... and don't stay up until 5am doing so.

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Day #16/90

Today was honestly a pretty slow day, for reasons mentioned yesterday. I anticipated me being up so late (1pm...) would be a huge momentum killer for all my planned activities. I ended up not walking today, or work on my underpainting, which didn't help my case at all. Fortunately, my sister pushed me to go out with her and hang out at a mall, and an arcade as well. She took me out to eat some ramen and I got to do some sketching in a new sketchbook.

This new sketchbook I'm working on is meant to be as welcoming to me as possible, and I did so by putting 0 care into the ink I placed onto the page on the first entry. I want to make it clear that quality is the last thing I should worry about in this sketchbook, and it should be focused on creating the habit of placing ink onto a page daily.

Not much to say otherwise. I'm currently doing some sprite animation but I'm going to try and sleep very soon to recalibrate my sleep patterns before my classes start.

Also, I have decided that I will be trying to post an ink sketch daily starting tomorrow. I won't promise that I'll be consistent but it should incentivize me to draw more often, so expect some crude sketching, or who knows, something that might surprise myself.

Oh yeah! A ton of my friends are planning on going to an art walk downtown. I am very excited to attend this walk and I definitely will be taking the opportunity to sketch.

Something I'm going to remind myself right now is to not be so obsessed with being productive. Sometimes, I should just be content with my life regardless of whether or not I was able to produce anything. I need to stick to this idea of trusting the overall trajectory of my changing lifestyle, and there will most certainly be dips.

What I'm thankful for:

My college campus being less than two hours away from home.

Goals for Day #17:

Walk in the morning.

Start underpainting.

Have fun on the art walk with friends!

Continue doing some more animation work.

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Day #17/90

I've definitely been experiencing some sleeping problems. I slept for an excessive amount of time (12 hours) and ended up feeling so out of it today. However, the art walk that I attended ended up being very fun. Walking amongst a large group of friends from art gallery to art gallery was an absolute blast, and I got to indulge in a nice sketching session.

I know that I had mentioned that I would post my sketches daily starting today, but I'm currently exhausted in bed so I'll more than likely edit this post in the morning to include what I sketched during that outing.20240119_133009.thumb.jpg.cc738a16cb3bc0680668fe92b225403d.jpg

I named this new sketchbook "the ugly sketchbook" and am trying to approach the sketchbook with 0 concern with how things look. Whether or not others understand what they're looking at is irrelevant to my goal of trying to push out thousands of ugly drawings before I start making good ones. I wish I internalized this when I first started doing sketchbook work, even if I'm still in the process of doing that to this day; letting go of perfectionist traits is very difficult.

What I'm thankful for:

Seemingly not having as many connections broken off from quitting games as expected.

Goals for Day #18:

Take a morning walk.

Continue portfolio related artwork.

Make more progress on animation work.

Edited by JuMpZ
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Day #18/90

Today sucked to be honest. I had 0 motivation to do anything today. I stayed in bed for an extended period of time and spent all my time dozing off throughout the day.

Things slightly picked up towards the night. I made slightly more progress on a portfolio piece. Instead of a sketch, I decided I'd show progress on that painting instead.

Burnt Sienna Cone/Aquamarine Blue Prism on White Background (Medium: Gouache)20240120_020834.thumb.jpg.6f035f382fbd0cdf88e7b83bd2930cf1.jpg

I've talked about this piece before, but I've been so nervous about messing it up that I'm not as far along as I'd like to be. I'm still in the first pass of applying tonal values, and I'm trying to maintain the integrity of the value/temperature relationships along the scene at this phase.

What I'm thankful for:

My youth.

Goals for Day #19

Walk in the morning.

Continue cone/prism painting with no fear.

Do sprite animation projects for a less serious artistic endeavor.

Study up on keyboard for beginners (I've been procrastinating on this for so long. I think once I push myself to take the first step, I'll engage more easily.

 

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Day #19/90

Man, it's way too late for me to be up. It's great that I'm being highly productive, but why does it seem like I'm only able to attain my flow state in the dead of night? This is something that has troubled me for as long as I'm able to remember. I will be sleeping right after posting this.

My day started off very slow, but I started gaining momentum throughout the day. I worked a bit more on my cone prism project, and I managed to get some sketching done. I've been working on Blender related work for the last 5 hours or so, for the intents and purposes of integrating 3D elements into my sprite animation work.

I spent some time with my sister in the evening, so that was nice. Otherwise, there isn't a lot for me to comment on, other than the fact I ended up not studying up on learning the keyboard again, but I'm allowing the procrastination since I'm doing other productive things.

It's pretty late (or early... I guess), so I've decided to post my sketchbook entry when I wake up later today.

 

20240121_150916.thumb.jpg.da9d5eb9f5d578b8dc01cc0564b7dea9.jpg

 

20240121_151010.thumb.png.3da7287507d115decf9f321d77a4610f.png

 

What I'm thankful for:

Being surrounded by ambitious people. I don't think I'd be this hungry if I weren't around them.

Goals for Day #20:

Walk in the afternoon, and potentially sketch.

Continue cone/prism painting taking peer critique into account.

Continue animation work.

Study up on keyboard for beginners (This time, I'll actually do it!)

Edited by JuMpZ
Uploading sketches.
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Day #20/90

Wow, day 20 already? I say that, but I know why I haven't been feeling urges for video games, and it's because my watch time on YT has been creeping in slowly to substitute part of the void created from playing so many games. In terms of sucking all of my time away, it's not nearly as egregious an offender. I've seen myself achieve higher productive levels in the last 20 days than I have in a while. Although I'm not complaining all that much, I still need to do something about my watch time on YT.

On a more positive note, I actually got a lot done today, despite being up super late last night (not that tonight is all that much better... but at least I have a chance of waking up before noon lmao). I actually have some pretty cool sketches to share, and I also started to learn some super basic stuff on keyboard! I know that when it comes to investing in a new hobby, it's going to take a lot of push from me to get the delayed gratification that comes with commitment; I can't just half-ass my attempt at learning the keyboard or it won't stick. It helps that I've always had an inclination for working with music (I grew up messing around with music software, instruments, and creating mashups), but I never actually took it all too serious. I would love to take my understanding of music to greater heights; heights that will potentially make my better known language of visual arts speak to that level of musical understanding. I think there's so much potential there.

But yeah, I walked today with the intention of sketching, and I ended up experimenting with wash pen and ink for the first time in years. It was very fun, and that's a super good sign. Who knew that not giving a care in the world about how things looked could actually end up yielding some unexpected results? I'm not even talking about how good it looks, I'm talking about that feeling of truly enjoying myself and being in my element, I'm actually super glad I felt that today.

Here are my sketches!

 

20240121_172816.thumb.jpg.7ccd5592c0a3a590263e79948cdfbad7.jpg

 

20240121_172753.thumb.jpg.c31650ccab38c6240dbfb43281c172da.jpg

 

One more thing to mention for tomorrow. It's my sister's birthday! So I doubt I'll have a lot of time to work on my projects but that's okay. This is a lot more important!

What I'm thankful for:

My rollerblades. Saved me a lot of time getting from campus and back. Also very fun!

Goals for Day #21:

Spend quality time with my sister.

Potentially sketch while on the go!

Meditate, even for a short amount of time once the day is over.

Edited by JuMpZ
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Day #21/90

What an exhausting day. Spent the entire time celebrating with my sister. We had a great time with her friends. Not much to say to be honest. I'm exhausted. I'm just gonna sleep soon.

No sketch today either, but I'll allow it.

What I'm thankful for:

Having a lot of energy today. It felt good.

Goals for Day #22

Morning walk.

Work on portfolio artwork.

Continue practicing keyboard.

Animate for leisure.

Start to brace self for beginning of semester next week.

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Day #22/90

Man, today felt like a complete blur. I definitely feel like my symptoms of depression kicked in today as I spent the majority of my time sinking into my bed. No walk, no painting, no keyboard practice, no sketching, no reading. I just spent time on my phone and sleeping.

It's unfortunate that things turned out this way, and I hope it doesn't become a cycle. At the very least I'm up right now working on some animation work, but it's already midnight.

What I'm thankful for:

My goal of becoming a professional artist. It feels like it's the only thing keeping me going these days.

Goals for Day #23

Get out of the house. I'm actually going to make this my only goal because I feel like setting these arbitrary goals were helping but also stressing me out. If I can at least go outside tomorrow, I think that alone will have an impact on the trajectory of the day.

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Day #23/90

Once again, I struggled to get myself out of bed for hours. It was rainy and I wasn't able to go out for a walk as a result.

However, I did get to work on my painting today, even if not for long. Otherwise, I felt super demotivated doing anything throughout the day.

I just hope getting back into the routine of attending classes will help get me gain the momentum to keep pushing forward.

What I'm thankful for:

My hands.

Goals for Day #24

Get out of bed before noon.

Take a walk if it's not raining.

Work on portfolio painting. Cover the cone/prism painting with the correct values and ask for feedback before the end of the day.

 

Edited by JuMpZ
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Day #24/90

Today went slightly better than previous days, so I guess that's a win. I felt slightly less dejected about the way I feel about my current life, and I did manage to do more creative work (painting, sprite animation). I also spent some time with my sister and played some mini golf, so that helped raise my spirits a bit. My classes are going to start soon and I am hoping that eliminating games from my lifestyle will help foster a more focused version of myself.

This semester is extremely important, and can make or break whether or not I'll be allowed to continue in this art program. I've been fighting to get in this art program for years and I don't want to lose this opportunity now.

It's a lot of pressure, but I think I can manage to make it through. Previous semesters have been very rough for me and my mental state has definitely had some terribly rough patches. I think this semester will go much better though, I have grown a lot from those difficulties.

What I'm thankful for:

Being able to feel my emotions. I recall times I've been so depressed I felt incapable of feeling anything.

Goals for Day #25:

Wake up and take a walk (if it's not raining).

Get up before noon.

Spend some time with a friend as planned.

Start up the sketches again.

Work on portfolio painting.

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Day #25-26/90

Yesterday marks the first time I've missed a journal entry. My depression symptoms have been slowly getting worse as the time to reintroduce myself to my studies approach. I had a good time with my friends yesterday, and I even managed to get some sketching done, but any time outside of that from my previous entry to this new one had been largely spent in bed, watching YouTube, or sleeping.

Can't say I'm proud of the way I've spent my time, but tomorrow is the day I move back in with my roommates, with the following day marking the first day I attend class in person. I'm sure the reintegration process into the school life will break the inert nature of my day to day life throughout this week.

I don't really have the energy to bring this up, but I have a lot to say when it comes to video games. Overall, my urges have been kept under control, and I don't currently fear a relapse, but I also acknowledge that's because I've replaced it with another time-waster (Social media; YouTube being the biggest culprit).

Goals for Day #27

Settle back into my place.

Set up painting still-life and work on the cone/prism painting project.

Take a walk around the block before it gets dark.

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Day #27/90

Not much happened today. I moved everything I needed from my mother's place to the house near campus.

I will say, the liveliness of being with college peers definitely lifted my mood a considerable amount. Maybe this is the change of pace that I need right now.

Tomorrow is the first day I attend class in person. I'm sure I'll adapt just fine, and I'm hoping I keep busy after class. I'll definitely have homework assigned and now is the time to get even more serious about submitting for portifoio this March.

Wish me luck.

What I'm thankful for:

My supportive roommates.

Goals for Day #28:

Readjust to the college life slowly and be kind to myself if things aren't as smoothsailing as I'd like them to be.

Work on my cone/prism painting. Ask roommates for critique.

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Day #28/90

I went to class today (digital painting), and got introduced to the medium. I've never done digital painting before so I'm looking forward to seeing what kind of work I'll be producing.

I got a lot done on my cone/prism painting, but I'm not quite ready to ask for feedback yet. I think with a little more of a time investment tomorrow I'll be more than ready for in-depth feedback.

My time today was somewhat productive. Definitely got sidetracked a lot, but I'll find some strategies to boost my efforts.

What I'm thankful for:

The optimism that still remains that I'll be able to pass portfolio.

Goals for Day #29

Get digital painting homework finished.

Start trying to finish Cone/Prism painting.

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Day #29/90

Animation class was fun. I had the same professor last semester and he is very funny. We shot video reference today for our first assignment, which I will more than likely share progress in tomorrow's entry.

Walking from campus and back has forced me to integrate even the slightest exercise, and it feels very good.

Didn't work on portfolio work today, but that's okay. Tomorrow there will be plenty of time for that.

What I'm thankful for:

My compassionate professors.

Goals for Day #30:

Work on animation homework after taking a 2 hour nap after class.

Make room in the day for portfolio oriented work.

 

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Day #30/90

Today was pretty laid back. A bit too laid back for my liking, to be honest. I spent a lot of time idling and procrastinating, but I still managed to get things done for the night. I've always sucked at being proactive... even in spite of video games being in my life. It's shocking I've gone this far in academia with my tendencies, but here I am actively trying to fight against my bad habits while still hanging on.

Tomorrow I'll be meeting up with a peer in my program to work together on classwork, so that will definitely enable me to be more focused. I cannot make the same mistake I made last semester, that being my inclination to stick around at home, not being nearly as productive as I could be if I were in say, the library.

It's the first week, but I need to be conscious of what I could do better for the weeks that approach me, to ensure I'll stay on top of my schoolwork and portfolio.

What I'm thankful for:

The patience some of my peers have with me.

Goals for Day #31:

Finish up animation work.

Gather photo reference for digital painting assignment before the day is over.

Find some time to work on portfolio oriented work.

Take real breaks. Walk outside, disengage with visual arts; anything to break the inefficient cycle of sitting down for far too many hours on end.

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8 hours ago, JuMpZ said:

I've always sucked at being proactive... even in spite of video games being in my life. It's shocking I've gone this far in academia with my tendencies, but here I am actively trying to fight against my bad habits while still hanging on.

I'm still struggling with this as well. In the past when I would be able to give up video games, I would struggle to get out of bed some mornings or spend too much or too little time to my various tasks of the day. I think in life there will always be bad habits you are fighting against, however, with time they will get better and they will have less of an impact on your day to day life. I think just doing your best to instill those good habits/strong habits and keeping them consistent will help decrease that feeling that you aren't getting anything done. Just a little bit of progress helps you to your goals. Again though everything takes time.

Best wishes,

Ace

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16 hours ago, Ace92 said:

I'm still struggling with this as well. In the past when I would be able to give up video games, I would struggle to get out of bed some mornings or spend too much or too little time to my various tasks of the day. I think in life there will always be bad habits you are fighting against, however, with time they will get better and they will have less of an impact on your day to day life. I think just doing your best to instill those good habits/strong habits and keeping them consistent will help decrease that feeling that you aren't getting anything done. Just a little bit of progress helps you to your goals. Again though everything takes time.

Best wishes,

Ace

Thank you for the thoughtful response. It definitely comes down to patience for me, I can't expect to see great change come out of nowhere. I think as long as I'm able to actively put in an effort I'll start seeing good things in the long term. I'm likely undergoing changes that I haven't taken time to reflect upon because all that tiny progress each day adds up.

I'm wishing you the best in your endeavors!

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