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Captain's Log - JSmith


JSmith

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  • 1 year later...

Day 2

I finished my degree, and my book. That's about all I have. Been unemployed 8+ months. I'm feeling largely apathetic to be honest. Just kinda went numb after some time, though I still put forth some effort here and there. My book is sitting in a pdf document on my laptop. I was going to find an agent, but I found myself in disfavor with the publishing industry, and decided to self-publish. Then I remembered how much I dislike social media marketing, or just social media in general. So now I don't know what to do. Or maybe I just don't think it's good enough to be worth the effort.

I was gaming, still. Not nearly to the degree as before my first detox, but enough to remain a problem. To be perfectly honest, I don't want to quit, not entirely. If it's possible to make it work, I would like to figure that out. But I can't right now. There's just...too much wrong. My body feels like it's falling apart. I'm terrified of surgery, but I need to do something.

I have a second story idea. I actually want to pivot to screenplays, as I've fallen in love with movies in my adult years, compared to the bookworm I was as a child. I'm terrified of that too. It's an ambitious idea, but I'm afraid of being well known, if it works. I have skeletons.

So I'm pretty crippled by anger, anxiety and fear currently. But I need to do something. I thought a couple days ago, what if I just took a year off gaming, and see what happens? I won't miss much, and I'll have the space and energy to figure out this job issue, and see if there's anything I want to do about this story. I really don't know yet, but boredom will force me to think about it.

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5 hours ago, JSmith said:

Day 2

I finished my degree, and my book. That's about all I have. Been unemployed 8+ months. I'm feeling largely apathetic to be honest. Just kinda went numb after some time, though I still put forth some effort here and there. My book is sitting in a pdf document on my laptop. I was going to find an agent, but I found myself in disfavor with the publishing industry, and decided to self-publish. Then I remembered how much I dislike social media marketing, or just social media in general. So now I don't know what to do. Or maybe I just don't think it's good enough to be worth the effort.

I was gaming, still. Not nearly to the degree as before my first detox, but enough to remain a problem. To be perfectly honest, I don't want to quit, not entirely. If it's possible to make it work, I would like to figure that out. But I can't right now. There's just...too much wrong. My body feels like it's falling apart. I'm terrified of surgery, but I need to do something.

I have a second story idea. I actually want to pivot to screenplays, as I've fallen in love with movies in my adult years, compared to the bookworm I was as a child. I'm terrified of that too. It's an ambitious idea, but I'm afraid of being well known, if it works. I have skeletons.

So I'm pretty crippled by anger, anxiety and fear currently. But I need to do something. I thought a couple days ago, what if I just took a year off gaming, and see what happens? I won't miss much, and I'll have the space and energy to figure out this job issue, and see if there's anything I want to do about this story. I really don't know yet, but boredom will force me to think about it.

You could try publishing on Amazon. That's what I'm doing with my book. They take care of a lot for you. You just gotta do the advertising. And I've been using a writing coach to peer review it.

Maybe if you broke the gaming break from 1 year down to 3 weeks you'll feel better. I noticed brain fog and lethargy go away after 2 weeks and you get a new frame of mind after. 3 weeks could be the base minimum and then keep going from there if you like how you're feeling. 

Good luck with surgery. 

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17 hours ago, BooksandTrees said:

Maybe if you broke the gaming break from 1 year down to 3 weeks you'll feel better. I noticed brain fog and lethargy go away after 2 weeks and you get a new frame of mind after. 3 weeks could be the base minimum and then keep going from there if you like how you're feeling.

I feel like 3 weeks isn't long enough to find a job and become financially stable, but we'll see. Otherwise I'm gaming with guilt. How do you feel after having quit all those years ago?

Day 3

Yeah, I'm bored. Kinda. Been finding things to fill in the day, but I get these awkward gaps where it feels like I don't know what to do with myself. I've been here before with dopamine detoxes, just gotta let it ride.

I'm not yet at the point where "ah yes I'm ready to apply to 1000 jobs now" or anything like that. I still absolutely hate it. Landlord is poking me for rent, though, so I need to do something. My degree is in computer science, but either my resume is still shit, or I'm literally the worst computer science graduate on the planet, so I'm widening. Last night I researched financial planner. Not doable without a base salary. Tonight it was flipping, thanks to Gary V. I really just want a job I don't have to think about, but I have all day, so...better than nothing I suppose.

I did do a couple hours of research for my story idea. Quantum mechanics. Something I would have struggled greatly with a week ago. So there's that. I need to ask a lawyer a copyright question.

These entries are a bit awkward because it's actually the beginning of the third day, but my sleep schedule is reversed, so I'm writing this after midnight, when ideally I'd do this at the end of the day. 48+ hours so far though. Bored.

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1.6.2024 | Still Day 3

Getting this out before it turns Day 4.

Had a GI episode after breakfast. My doctors suspect IBS. It started about a year ago, and my tests have come back all negative, so IBS is really all that's left, short of a colonoscopy (fuck no). I'd really like a better explanation than "well sometimes your gut just acts up". That feels weak. WHY? There seems to be a bunch of foods that now give me problems. Will try to get an allergy test done.

Mom texted me today wanting to check in. Not in the mood to give another report on how I'm still jobless. Will get back to her later.

Had a disturbing thought a few days ago: the moment I do find a job, it's likely I won't be able to afford my current therapy. Well, I will. My mental health is the priority right now. Student loans are gonna have to suffer, or something.

Otherwise, still getting gaming urges and bored spells that somehow hasn't yet completely overwhelmed me. Porn feels like a problem, but one at a time. Back tomorrow night.

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1.7.2024 | Day 4

Some small efforts. Reworked my resume (again...) last night, with advice from my counselor, then applied to a few more jobs earlier today. I'd really like it if this was as painless as possible. I don't want to have to touch my resume again.

Boredom/awkwardness is still there. Still getting urges, too. I'm starting to realize just how much in my life can actually manifest into an urge. Even watching youtube videos related to fictional worlds makes me want to play the associated games. I won't get into specifics. Maybe I can channel this energy into my story ideas. Probably gonna do some work on that tonight.

Resisting computer games is easy because I wasn't doing a whole lot of that anyways, but the phone games are much harder because I was much more invested. I still have them installed. I should...uninstall them. I'm hesitating which makes me suspect I haven't fully committed. I haven't even officially decided on the duration. I'm just going a day at a time right now. I feel like I should make a firm decision, but I'm afraid if I pick too big a number I'll disintegrate or something...my brain is already trying to "negotiate" with me. I think a firm decision would be helpful.

Had a fun idea: tracking movies I watch. I watch a TON of movies. It's getting kinda ridiculous. Today was War of the Worlds (2005), a classic that just now became free on YT 😑. So interesting seeing a young Tom Cruise and Dakota Fanning after all these years, especially after having recently watched The Equalizer Part 3 (2023) and being like "holy crap is that Dakota Fanning? she's grown up!". Actually we're probably the same age. 

Yeah we're less than a year apart...

Anyways, tomorrow's Monday and I have to make a bunch of boring calls. Maybe I'll get started on flipping too, if I get up early enough. One big positive since I started this: I've been getting a TON of sleep.

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1.8.2024 | Day 5

Didn't do anything today, aside from avoiding gaming. I wonder if it's taking more energy than I thought, just to resist. I uninstalled my phone games last night, but the cravings are still there. Even with now having to wait to redownload, it feels way too easy to just...revisit the app store. As if it's not really the number of taps or the wait time that's stopping me, it's the decision alone. How easy it would be to decide to give in. Sigh.

YouTube movies are keeping me distracted, but I really wish I could have been a little more productive. Today is the Riddick trilogy, starting with a rewatch of Pitch Black (2000), a movie which terrified the crap out of me as a kid, followed by a rewatch of The Chronicles of Riddick (2004), one of my favorite sci-fi films of all time. The third film, Riddick (2013), I have not seen yet. I will after I finish this. I heard it wasn't very good, and in fact it seems the trilogy as a whole wasn't well received, but I don't let film critics or public opinion stop me. If I'm interested, I'll see for myself, as I always do.

I really need to get up earlier tomorrow, to make those calls. I also still need to get back to my mom.

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8 hours ago, JSmith said:

As if it's not really the number of taps or the wait time that's stopping me, it's the decision alone.

So frustratingly true in my experience, too- the number of taps simply gives me reconsider the decision, but doesn't change it for me. What I currently am aiming for is being able to make the decision I truly want for myself- "not today" -with the very first tap, the very first impulse.

If you want more helpful distractions, try something that gets you learning, not only entertaining. Documentaries, movies on topics/places/people you care for, etc. . That's how I get myself to enjoy any entertainment form- combining it with education. Helps me take breaks and be engaged with the content in a way that feels meaningful!

Po

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15 hours ago, Pochatok said:

What I currently am aiming for is being able to make the decision I truly want for myself- "not today" -with the very first tap, the very first impulse.

@Pochatok unsure what you mean here, can you clarify?

1.9.2024 | Day 6

Had some weird/disturbing dreams last night. I had a dream where I gave in and returned to gaming, and a nightmare where I lived in a haunted house, with some weird doll/girl figure. Many years ago, a much younger me, frustrated with a slew of nightmares I had been having, somehow trained my mind to wake me up from perceived nightmares, before they got too bad. It seems that defense has been eroding in the past couple years. They drag on longer than I'm used to. I noticed I can panic and catastrophize inside my head, WHILE dreaming, but I don't wake up.

Anyways. Watched an hour long YT video on ebay flipping basics. Honestly, I don't want to do it. It's just another money making scheme. Doesn't mean it doesn't work, clearly it does, but I've been down this road before. Chasing money with zero passion for the actual activity. I'd really like to just get a regular job, at least then I have stability. There's a tech training program in my state that supposedly helps with just that. I don't really have any other options, than the usual cold applying. I'll see where it goes.

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Good luck w/ working through pornography addiction! Has been such a long-winded journey for me, I've only arrived at what feels like true liberation from that addiction... a couple months ago?..

And, what I meant in prior message: my aim is to get myself to stop w/ the very first impulse towards addictive behavior. Right now, I tend to fall through the rabbit hole for some time before stopping myself; I hope to be able to say "no" before I even consider jumping down.

Let me know if this doesn't make sense!!!

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I've been addicted to porn since my early teens. So for more than 20 years, which is a loooot to take in and try to overcome. I've been clean now for almost half a year and my longest stretch previously has only been about a month or so. It has helped me a lot to ask myself why I watch porn, because I know it's not really for sexual needs. Just like video games it has been a strong coping mechanics; a switch I can use almost whenever I want to feel good about myself for an hour or so. And even though I've stopped watching porn it takes much more time to deal with all the pornographic images in your head that your mind wants to go to so often during a day. In order to deal with the addiction this process of imagination is also something you have to work on a lot (especially if you want to have a healthy way of masturbating).

I just watched this video today that brought up this subject, and it felt inspiring:

 

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1.11.2024 | Day 8

Rollercoaster of emotions today. Very positive session with my counselor. Expressed my frustration that quitting gaming wasn't translating to increased productivity as quickly as I was hoping. Their response: give it another week. Fair enough. Shared my concerns regarding porn consumption, also got assuring feedback in that area. Some things to think about and work on for future sessions.

Got rejected on a public Discord server after. Was messing around, trying to fit in, talk to people. Apparently told a bad joke and got told to fuck off. Devastating blow...mostly to my ego I'll admit. I was so angry. I thought I had read the room correctly, but I guess not. I don't get these public chats, other people make it look so easy. Whatever, I lost.

I'm not even mad anymore, because now I'm talking to an old friend I reconnected with. They literally got back to me while I was sitting at my desk fuming over the Discord nonsense, and whoosh, the pain is releasing. Funny how that works sometimes.

I have a call tomorrow about some possible work training, something that might help me out of this unemployment mess. We'll see. I really thought I was gonna give up today.

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1.12.2024 | Day 9

Had my work training intake call this morning. 5 months of training...at another school. I'm sick. I already have a bachelor's degree and did other training after that. I told myself I would never do another training/school program, but at least this time they're paying me, and I don't really have any other options. I suppose I could keep applying to jobs and back out if something good comes up. 5 months is a long time.

@sniper Sorry that happened to you. From what I heard somewhere else on here the GQ discord isn't the best, so good on you for getting out of there.

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