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NEW VIDEO: I Quit MMOs and THIS Happened

Watermelon's Second Attempt at the 90 Day Detox


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Ok so I went to the East Bay from Santa cruz the previous night to pick up some stuff from a friend and ended up staying with him in a guest room. I sadly stayed up all night playing games because it was so comfortable and I was by myself...I think as a way of coping with my anxiety and stress about not having a stable place to live and hopping around so much from friend to friend. I also stayed here most of the day today and binge gamed...back to day #0! : ( I just deleted everything I had installed game-wise cause I really need to get my act together. Gahh!!

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Yiu did a great job deleting your games and committing to quitting again. I've gamed and deleted many times. You'll find that gaming doesn't cure your anxiety...it just buries it and it will still bubble to the surface. Quitting gaming can be scary, but your feelings will be out in the open and you can find new healthy ways to handle them.

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Thanks for the encouragement Mettermrck! 

The last threr days, especially the last two have gone quite well! I rallied myself on Wednesday and went to the North Bay, where I had before seen a spot I thought would be nice to camp in. I think I'd like to just spend some days intermittently sleeping outside between staying with ftiends; summer is lovely in this part of California and it basically never rains until September or so. Got to my spot a few hours before sunset Wednesday, about a mile off the road and felt like I could finally relax and disconnect from technology.

The next day I hiked back out in the late morning and went to get groceries, took a shower in the previous therapists office building (felt a bit funny doing this, she retired about a month ago and I had noticed how there are showers in some of the bathrooms, since I figured it wouldn't bother anyone, there being a bunch ot bathrooms, and publicly accessible, I took advantage of this). Later on I went to the library to send some emails and charge my phone; was tempter to play a bit just from being on my computer but i stayed focused. In the late afternoon and early evening i worked some driving for doordash and made decent money from getting good tips all night. I hiked back in to my campsite just as it was getting dark and spent a few hours reading.

Today I sleptma bit in and relaxed and read a bit where I'm camping. In the early afternoon I hiked out, bought some soup, and decided to spend the afternoon at a local nude beach since my back was hurting a bit and waking / lying on sand always helps a bit. It's also a gorgeous beach called Black Sands. I had a whole section of beach to myself (the nude part, kinda only locally known, involves walking over some small cliff so is kinda remote and with some very cool rock formations. Water temp in the ocean was amazing, the sun was blazing so I spent a few hours splashing around, lying in the sun, eating melon and stretching. In the evening worked again a few hours and made good money again. Two great days! Im getting a bit lonely after camping by myself so I was trying to make some plans with friends in Berkeley tomorrow night, or at the very least ill go dancing there tomorrow night.

ps: also very grateful there are tons of ripe blackberriea along the trail to my camp so ive been munching them for breakfast. Time to head back now before it gets dark, I do know a mountain lion was spotted in this area in the spring :)

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In the early afternoon I hiked out, bought some soup, and decided to spend the afternoon at a local nude beach since my back was hurting a bit and waking / lying on sand always helps a bit.

I hope you wore sunscreen! Wouldn't want to get a bit... singed! B|

I love the sound of your free lifestyle mate. Sounds so relaxing and would do wonders for your mental health. Are you planning on doing it for a while? I've been listening a lot to budget travelling podcasts, and one you might be interested in is Man in a Van. He has been living in his van for a year and is very interesting.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Edit: Tuesday 7/25/17 up to Day#12 since latest relapse.


Things have been going really well, for the most part. My partner / lady friend came back into town after vacationing with her sister and we spent the last week doing a lot of fun things: beach, going swimming at a lake in the forest where I saw an otter swimming nearby us, and we picked thimble berries, we went to a hot springs, and on a camping trip with friends of her co worker on the Russian River for a few days of more swimming and a super fun canoe ride up the river one afternoon. I'm really grateful I've been having a full week of what I think summer is all about: playing in water and sun and eating summer fruit (including watermelon, yummm). Last year I was upset with myself because I had spent the summer indoors basically gaming with few exceptions, this is way better : )

Yesterday I also went to the woodshop where I've been hanging out now and again to work on the chessboard I started a while ago. I basically finished the board minus some oiling and fine sanding and I turned out my first three pawns on the lathe!! I already felt like I got a bit more comfortable with the lathe in the process. They MOSTLY look alike ;) aka "artisanal." The wood lathe is super fun.

The downside to these good times is I'm pretty broke (though I spent almost nothing except food and gas for this fun vacation), I have less than $500 in my bank, yikes! My back & shoulders have been bothering me quite a bit from canoeing and lathe work, which is quite physical and involves standing and bending over. What I've missed most in these nomadic couple of weeks is a quiet private room to retreat to with a yoga mat and do some super slow relaxing yoga. It's hard for me to relax completely without having my own little nest to retreat to. I just spent some time at the library applying to a part time job; I was trying to do DoorDashing today but was getting no food orders so I gave up on it. I hope to work a bunch this week and hopefully make some money and then next week join my partner on a camping trip to some hot springs in Eastern California; it would be fun if I felt a bit less stressed about finances / had more of a plan because she'd like to go to some places I spent time in 2-3 years ago when I worked at a summer camp in that area and she hasn't been there at all before, so I'd love to show her these spots.

Some of the times during this past week I've definitely gotten intense cravings to game, especially when I'm at the library. I was even tempted to download the latest game I was playing today, even looked at the website. I just reminded myself that now it's about two weeks since I've gamed and I wouldn't have been able to do all these fun things if I had been in binging mode. Sometimes I experienced a lot of contrasting lows / highs in my moods. The lows I sometimes attributed to craving the dopamine rushes and sometimes to just my general depression / anxiety that is more chronic and pops up now and then. Just keep on trying my best I suppose...

We have been staying with friends in two different places in my partner's old neighborhood when we weren't camping this last week. I'm going to stay in the woods again for the next couple of days on my own and looking forward to having some alone time actually to hopefully rejuvenate whatever parts of me need that.

Take care everyone, hope your days are filled with things that bring you joy and gratitude!



Edited by MmmWatermelon
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Friday, Day #15:

I've been working a lot doing DoorDashing these last three days to make a bit of money and feel like I could go on this trip with my partner. I ended up making a few hundred dollars, taking breaks and such here and there. Today I got kinda stressed / tense by the evening from sitting /driving so much and whirling around from place to place, plus trying to plan for the trip ahead. I quit a bit before I was planning to and went to our friend's house we are leaving from in the morning and just did a super relaxing hour of slow yoga (a favorite audio file). I felt chill enough to pack and organize what I needed for the trip afterwards and hung out with some friends in the evening. Still feel a bit like my nervous system is a bit overamped but I feel good about how I've been doing these past couple of days and happy about the amount of money I feel like I can use for this trip now.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Good advice Mettermrck, I've been practicing Yoga Nidra, which is essentially a guided relaxation / meditatiin while lying down, most often at night or when the need arises. It works better for me than sitting meditation because sitting for too long often causes me back pain.

To answer your question about Doordashing, it is...similar to Grubhub and a bunch of other services that have popped up in recent years, kind of like Uber for food. Restaurants that don't have their own delivery system often use it. I pick it up from the restaurant and deliver the food to people's homes. It can be quite expensive for them; as a dasher I get paid a flat fee per delivery ($5 normally, up to $7 during lunch and dinner hours) plus tips. It is pretty decent in my area, I make $20 / hour semiregularly. It works well for me personally rather than Uber because I have an old, beat up two car door that doesn't qualify for Uber...but food doesn't care!

SO! Day 30 of this streak. Feels good saying that. i've been gone since my last post nearly, on a roadtrip with my girlfriend. We visited some friends in Sacramento on the way, then did a lot of hikes and hot springing / camping in Eastern California. I spent as much money as I made during the days before the trip. I feel in better shape from doing some long-ish hikes at high elevations, and like my sense of possibility feels increased. I had a few minor anxiety episodes during this trip, usually in crowded, fast paced restaurants right after some really serene, quiet mountain environments that made it seem a little too shocking and surprising to be in a super high-sensory environment right after, but I managed to just stay present with the anxiety sensations without running away, recognizing them for what they were. My anxiety is severely impacted by gaming, and feels largely manageable when I feel like I've put some time between my last binging session and the present. The trip was mostly awesome, though challengining, and just a bit soured at the end by having an argument with my partner while on our way back to the Bay. She's going travelling for at least a few weeks or longer and we aren't sure where either of us will be living in the fall. I think we managed to patch things up somewhat before she left, but I was being hard on myself yesterday for saying some dumb things.

been doing lots of doordashing yesterday and today. Grateful ive been getting good tips. My sister came to visit for a few hours earlier today and we had a nice packed lunch at a waterfall we walked to, that was very nice. Im staying with a friend from tomorrow night until Wednesday, which I am excited for having my own room to do some good stretching and a bed to sleep in for the first time in a while.

whoo day 30!!

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Day 34:

Ugh I've been in a terrible / irritable mood and feeling depressed for much of the past couple of days. I feel like everything is going upside down. I wasn't really enjoying staying at my friend's student house; his mom is in the hospital and had just received the news she is terminally ill the other day so he has of course been gone much of the time. I enjoyed the time I got to spend with him and had some good conversation but I felt awkward walking around his house with 20ish other people I didn't know; sometimes this might not be a problem and I've been there and even enjoyed chatting with people but I feel like such a ball of stress right now: my mind is churning with trying to figure out the fact that I don't have a home to live in, very little money, trying to accomplish some basic goals of job applying and saving a little money doing DoorDash but I can't seem to destress and just relax at all the last few days. I went for a longish hike yesterday then did an hour of yoga. I guess that was the most relaxed I felt and was doing decently but then in the afternoon I started getting hungry and felt awkward about using the coop's kitchen so I instead sat in my friend's room by myself watching a movie, playing a bit of chess, randomly browsing the web. I avoided going into the kitchen until it was late at night so many people weren't around. I was listening to people having an intelligent conversation in the room next to me and just felt very left out...I started comparing myself to these people who are graduate students, younger than me, seem intelligent and seeing myself as a failure, in my early 30's and not having my shit together whatsoever. I even watched some let's plays to kill time because I was miserably hungry but afraid that if I got out and engaged with people my frustration at my situation would just bubble out and people would take it personally. I seriously feel like I cannot have a good human conversation right now because of stress and my mind being so preoccupied and that is just creating more stress...hah. Anyway, I had designated yesterday a rest day because I was stressed out working and my back was hurting from driving so much. At least the hike and yoga went well, but not sure how really restful it was otherwise.

Today I decided to leave there because I was afraid I'd just relapse with gaming if I stuck around in that awkward situation and my friend wasn't coming back anymore before leaving on a trip. I went back to DoorDashing in the late morning, my back feeling better and while I'm waiting for an order to be ready in the restaurant, I was doing a crossword puzzle in my car; something I picked up somewhere so I'd have something to do while waiting and not automatically go to my phone. An old guy parks next to me and like HITS my car with his door then loudly complains to me through my open window that I hadn't parked properly. I think people normally think of me as a pretty mellow guy but I kind of fucking lost it inside. I asked him in an annoyed voice that if he didn't think he had enough room to get out, why the hell didn't he park in one of the literally HUNDREDS of open spots in the parking lot that is mall size, but chooses instead to park there and just HIT my door? Sure I was parked with one side of my car over one of the double lines of the spot, but there is literally an open uncrowded parking lot before his eyes. I sat fuming, reparked so I wouldn't have to see him again, then very seriously contemplated rubbing a bunch of wasabi or soy sauce from the food order I was picking up on his door handle, but decided I'd try to let it go. Though I didn't in my mind really. Anyway, I took a break and went to the library to look at job applications. Found a job that interests me in a national park on the East Coast, but I feel like I can't shake this feeling of anger of frustration that is sitting on my chest. And it doesn't all have to do with this guy earlier today, I'm not sure where it's all coming from. This application is due in two days, it would be a pretty much dream job for me at this time but it does sound physically demanding, like I may not be qualified enough, and it would involve relocating. I have a really hard time JUST APPLYING to jobs without thinking endlessly about them to begin with. I feel like while applying I'm spending more time fantasizing  about all the possible scenarios that could arise in my life than actually focusing on the task at hand of just sending a darned resume. Anyway, I later went back to DoorDashing and I realized I had lost my credit card they give me to pay for the food orders. I didn't need it for the morning work so I had probably lost it at my friend's house while doing laundry. It is a far drive and most likely I'll have to go get a replacement one when DoorDash offices are open, which is also a far drive. This frustrated me further because I wasn't able to work tonight AND I'M JUST SO FRUSTRATED WITH...EVERYTHING...RIGHT NOW...ARGHHHHH. I think I need to find a new therapist..., I am not finding an adequate amount of constructive ways to vent right now :(


Update: I continued working on this latest job application; it involved a pretty time consuming questionnaire and I will have to put together a cover letter. I feel pretty good about my resume and I feel like my degree is perfectly relevant to the job, but they unfortunately require either some graduate level courses or a year of field experience in a similar job. I have some volunteer experience that is relevant and hopefully I can argue in a cover letter that I'd be qualified. I feel a bit better about doing something productive. I also have an interview on Monday for a part time job at a bakery which would be something to tide me over until I find a more serious job, without needing to do DoorDashing all day long :\

Goals for tomorrow:

- shave

- drive to DoorDash office to pick up a new credit card

- finish and submit this job application

- probably work some DoorDashing in evening if time allows

- go splash in the creek if time allows to relax


Edited by MmmWatermelon
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Hang in there, Watermelon. When it comes to intelligence, I find that everyone has their niche of knowledge. I'm a history nerd. Put me in a room with professors and I'm on their level. Introduce me to 10 year olds talking about coding and programming and forget it...I feel like an idiot. Be aware of your strengths and hold on to those.

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Day 35

Thanks Mettermrck for all your encouragement :)

I felt a lot better today, camping in the woods and reading at night was pretty relaxing. I accomplished all my goals for today, except shaving (will do tomorrow, mainly I want to be able to easily shave on Monday before my interview by removing my hefty beard a few days ahead, have kinda been meaning to go back to a shaved look already, so I figure this is good timing). Got a new card so I was able to Doordash for a few hours and had easy \ no-problem deliveries and decent tips, nice. I just submitted my application just a quarter an hour before the library closes so I am ready to make my way to bed. I also had a chance to go for a splash in a creek nearby with some interesting pools. Some kids were there in wetsuits sliding down the polished rocks between the couple of various pools, so I joined them a bit and they included me in their game : ) Goals for tomorrow:

- shave, probably

- work a bunch more

- look for some more jobs

- go to social security office to have a meeting with my case manager, making sure my insurance continues and renewing food stamps; thisll be helpful for my financial woes if it works out

- think about some social activities, kinda lonely with my partner out of town for so long!

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Good luck, MmmWatermelon


Thanks, BigPete, and you as well in whatever your pursuits are right now!

Day 39

It's been a very magical last 48 hours! I continued working hard to save a bit of money and made my goal of putting $500 or so in my savings account by the end of last week week. Finished job app, yep...so I will follow up in a week or so-ish. Also successfully got food stamps which is a big plus for saving more money and feeling less stressed. I allowed myself to relax a good chunk of Saturday and went to the beach, though it was foggy, and still warm, as it often is in this part of California in the summer. I worked more  that afternoon for a bit, then decided to check out a hot springs nearby I hadn't been to in a few months. It is a tidal one, that is only exposed at the most extreme lower tides, usually around the new moon or full moon. The window of opportunity is small so usually a very regular crowd converges at the same time. The tides were at 4AM Sunday morning, and 5AM Monday morning, so I slept in my car Saturday night nearby and had a magical morning there. I made some friends at the hot springs and later joined a group to play a fantastic game of ultimate frisbee on a nude beach nearby, fun, fun : ) Best frisbee I've played in a long time, if not ever, and it felt so freeing to be able to take random dips in the ocean while running around naked. I'm glad to know this is a thing, since I've missed having regular friends to play frisbee with, I will definitely be going back! Another dip this morning, the springs was packed of naked folks, it being a bit later morning today, and as a fun aside I also had my moment of glory as a small time hero by recovering somebody's iphone that had fallen down a tight deep crack amongst beach boulders. After several people tried and one girl got stuck trying, I gave it another shot and managed to find it with some effort and squeezing :) I got a lot of accolades and a free breakfast out of it. A bunch of us hotspringers headed up a mountain nearby to try to escape the perpetual coastal fog and see the eclipse after breakfast. We caught glimpses of it through moving fog pockets, which I thought was actually really nice because it allowed us to see the outlines clearly and the fog sort of acted like eclipse glasses. Lots of people had the same thought as us and the road was swarmed, it was a really fun and also seemingly freeing experience for all the people involved. I headed back to town to shower and shave, clean off my hot springs stench and had a job interview for a croissant bakery. I thought it went decently, though I felt I came off as a bit tense. Just need to send them references tomorrow morning...


While writing this a girl from the hot springs invited me out for a cider. I think if I were single I'd have a bit of a crush on her, but she was just plain very interesting to talk with so I'll try to get to know her as a friend (she knows I have a partner etc.). I'll just joke with my girlfriend that I went on a date while she was out of town for a few weeks : )

Looking forward to working for four days later this week at a summer camp I used to work at. It'll be a nice change of pace from driving around the city and to reconnect with an old community I haven't been in much contact with for the last two years.

Grateful for:

- friendly and welcoming California hippies

- feeling alive

- having recent experiences that are making me think a lot and challenge my perspectives

- making some friends just a few days after I wrote that I wanted more socializing

- soaking in hot water, and swimming in cold water

- frisbee fun

Edited by MmmWatermelon
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Day 46 - halfway through the 90 day mark...the past week has been good and full. I went to work in the summer camp kitchen Thursday - Sunday and saw some old friends as well as met some fun new people. I'm in the Bay for today and two more days then will go work for another four days. It's hard work, but it is punctuated with a lot of fun and silliness and dips in an amazing river that helps one relax and feel able to do it all over again. Also, unlimited food working in the kitchen isn't bad for a few days...heh. I felt somewhat challenged at a few times  times by back pain mostly, I had a few moments when I had to make myself slow down a bit and stretch because I have been used to working myself pretty hard in this kitchen. I also feel much stronger today though after these past couple of weeks that have involved a lot of hiking, swimming, and working. Gotta just keep making sure I pause and let my body rest between all the constant activity.

The one thing that weighs on my heart a bit right now is feeling some uncertainty about my current relationship. I've been constantly meeting new people and sometimes girls I feel attracted to. It's been a reminder of how much fun it can be to have even the potential of short flings with girls (even if 90% of the time they don't happen...). I wish I could feel 100% devoted to this relationship but I can't say  that I feel so in my heart honestly, it's been too easy to focus on what I am missing out on by being committed to a single partner. I tried to have a talk about this last night with my girlfriend, but it was mostly painful for her to hear, and didn't help resolve what I am feeling. I don't know why I feel like having physical intimacy with people is so important to me in feeling emotionally close to them, maybe it just speaks to an inability to feel fully connected with people in just a friendship context. This feels like something that runs pretty deeply for me and I don't think I'm going to be able to just resolve it today or tomorrow. Perhaps I just need to focus on friendships more. I find myself more easily connecting to women than guys a lot of the time and many of my closest friends are women. I mistrust "gangs of guys" that seem to act all macho and full of testosterone and rather seek company in which I feel like I can feel free to be vulnerable if called to, which usually ends up being women, but there is also a handful of guy friends I can feel that way around. Anyway, it may feel easier to be in this relationship if I am actually living with my girlfriend again when she is done traveling; I really enjoyed the day to day stuff that usually happens when living together like cooking, sleeping in the same bed, being able to talk about our day etc. I don't usually feel distracted by crushes on other girls when that is happening. It's just hard being uncertain about the future and I Guess when that happens I go back to other patterns of relating to other people and.

Anyway, I am also planning on going on a roadtrip with my dad in about a week when I am done with work and he's on vacation. We will go up through Oregon and Washington and visit some national parks and other wilderness areas. We'll probably also meet up with my girlfriend in Washington and also camp with her for a few days. I don't feel the closest with my dad, mostly because I feel like he has a hard time listening and he's usually pretty caught up in his own stuff. He and my mom just divorced in the last half year and he just moved to his own place in the past week so it is an especially hard time for him. I'm not sure how I feel about everything myself, I've mostly been ignoring it since I haven't seen them much and I'd rather not dwell on it. I hope this trip won't be too challenging...I could see it go either way. I think being around him may bring out a lot of anger from within me...we'll see...I guess I'll give another chance to hanging out with him. After this trip I should have a bit more work at the summer camp for a few eeks also, which is nice; didn't get the croissant bakery job I interviewed for but I kind of didn't want it anymore anyway. It seemed like more commitment and less flexibility than what I thought at first.

Grateful for: -

- summer swimming in rivers

- feeling like my muscles are stronger

- being able to do more challenging things and feeling little to no real anxiety

- getting to play chess on the board I made with my friend a few days ago

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  • 2 weeks later...

So...I relapsed last week after posting this. My back was especially bothering me and I was feeling kinda depressed and lazy about seeking real solutions to the challenges of everyday life. I ended up downloading Hearthstone on my phone and stayed up late a few times last week. Anyway, things aren't all bad; it is probably fortunate I had this trip with my dad planned because it didn't allow me to wallow and I had other things to do. It's also really nice not having to worry about money and accomodations and such; the only downside is I've been using the fact that being with my dad constantly  is pretty challenging to allow myself to keep Hearthstone on my phone and keep playing it a bit at night. It hasn't spiraled out of control or anything but it just makes me miss the successful days of counting since I've been game free :)

Anyway, so far it's been quite a successful trip; we were in Oregon hiking for a few days, despite the whole West Coast being on fire right now and smoke being prevalent; the last 3 days we have been in Rainier National Park and did some awesome hikes: we hiked up Eagle Peak, which involved. 3,300 ft elevation gain hike, then scrambling up rocks off trail using hands and such to get to the top. My dad hung back at the top a bit because he's nearing 60 and didn't feel the need, but I was quite impressed with the shape he's in; since my parents got divorced in the last year, his main distraction has basically been walking 10 or more miles a day, and he's in quite good shape for his age and someone who smoked from when he was 13 until 57...anyway, I managed to get to the peak by doing a bit of palm-sweating rock work above some high ledges and felt quite satisfied with myself. I haven't felt confident enough in my body to do a scramble and hike like this is more than 3 years, and I find it one of the most satisfying feelings in the world. Today we also did a relatively long hike nearing some of the glaciers on Rainier. That place is very special!

We've been staying at motels and not camping so far. We may when we meet with my girlfriend later in the week. That got delayed a bit because someone she knew as a child passed away the other week and she went back to Cali for the memorial :( I've been trying to take advantage of the comfortable motel rooms to do yoga, which has been super helpful. However I'm definitely feeling challenged with my back after these long hikes of the last 2 days.

what feels a lot better is that my partner and i have been talking a bunch and connecting a lot better despite the physical distance. We've been talking about an idea to move to Portland in a house with someone we kind of know in November. We have a couple of friends who live there and...I loove mushroom hunting, I wouldn't mind being there for the prime mushroom foraging season :) we'll see...so far it's mostly an idea but we are both pretty into it!

erm I don't know what to do about the Hearthstone...it's so essy to think to myself that I'll just play a little bit here and there and slowly collect cards without thinking of it too much...but past experience shows it always spirals out of control and I realy think if I'm going to make a big step like move to Oregon with my partner I better plant good seeds.So asoff this post I'm officially back on the abstinence wagon. That goes for online chess too this time...I have a book with me I'll read instead tomorrow. Ok so I made it 46 days, let's start the counter over and try for more :)


- relaxing yoga

- eggs

- hiking in Mt Rainier Natl Park

- hanging out with my dad and not going insane...all the time ;)

- continuing to do fun summer things

- having fun conversations with my partner

- looking forward to seeing her in a few days



Edited by MmmWatermelon
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What books are you reading? I really need to get into the habit of reading, but I find it so much easier to listen to audiobooks or podcasts.

I've been jumping aroune between The Klamath Knot (a book on thoughts about evolution and the natural history or northern California), A Week on the Concord and Merrimack (an earlier book of Thoreau's), and reading Midsummer Night's Dream. Brought the Klamath Knot along on this trip I'm on. The last book I finished reading was Daughter of Persia (a very interesting book that is a memoir of a woman who starter social work programs in Iran and some basic history of Iran since the 20s). Thanks for reading around my journal!

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You've been in the game for long enough that you know relapses are just bumps in the road. Attempt to analyze everything (everything: your behaviors, your thoughts, your environment; literally all the factors that could have caused the relapse) about the situation, and create an action plan for how you are going to prevent it in the future. 

Otherwise you seem to be well. Keep enjoying life, I guess :) 

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