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kortheo

My Journal - Travis

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Can't wait to hang out in SD in January man. :)

So you have a trip planned? What dates? :) 

I'll be in Santa Barbera January 8-9 and then I have no plans other than I'll be in California and plan to spend time in SF, LA and SD. :)

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Can't wait to hang out in SD in January man. :)

So you have a trip planned? What dates? :) 

I'll be in Santa Barbera January 8-9 and then I have no plans other than I'll be in California and plan to spend time in SF, LA and SD. :)

Awesome! Well yeah, definitely come down my way (Oceanside, Carlsbad area) and I can show you around. Should be great. I should be around and able to make time.

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Day 83

I had therapy this morning. I only go once per month at this point, and this was actually my final session. It was a good ending - my life is in a pretty good place right now, so it was nice to kind of wrap things up. I used to view therapy as a place you go when you're depressed or otherwise struggling mentally, and then once those symptoms are resolved you stop going. But I've learned that therapy can be more broad than that - a place to process thoughts and emotions as you continue to grow, even if you're not dealing with overt mental illness at the time.

Journaling here is also very therapeutic, though. I process my thoughts and feelings each day here, which is incredibly important for growth. It helps me reflect and change and improve.

Sometimes it's good to go back to basics. I remember when I did Respawn I had to choose activities. I realized last night that I don't really have a good resting activity still. I can get pretty focused on work, and sometimes it's hard to get out of work mode. And if I'm tired, I don't necessarily always want to do something like reading or writing or meditation - sometimes you just need something to relax and unwind with, rather than something that takes deliberate effort. In the past this would be gaming of course. Now, I'm still working on finding that thing.

Going to watch movies with friends tonight. Tomorrow I'm going to a Christmas party in the evening. Sunday I'm going to a fitness bootcamp in the morning. Ready, set, weekend!

Gratitude

  1. Delicious pumpkin spice latte.
  2. Attractive woman at the coffee shop.
  3. Hugging my therapist at the end of our session and wishing him well.
  4. Catching up on work.
  5. Music.
  6. Rain this morning.
  7. Kinship I feel with r/sysadmin
  8. Letting go a bit.
  9. Giving myself permission to not finish books.
  10. Getting a full night's sleep.

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Haha love it: Ready, Set, Weekend!

I'd love to hear what you manage to find works well for unwinding. I definitely know the obstacle of not wanting to read, etc. Ironically gaming takes a lot of concentration and all that, but yet we still do it when we're tired - the reason I believe is because it stimulates our brain so we are "less" tired.

But I know a lot of people do feel that lack of a resting activity, so would love to expand on it at some point. I don't have the best answer yet.

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Haha love it: Ready, Set, Weekend!

I'd love to hear what you manage to find works well for unwinding. I definitely know the obstacle of not wanting to read, etc. Ironically gaming takes a lot of concentration and all that, but yet we still do it when we're tired - the reason I believe is because it stimulates our brain so we are "less" tired.

But I know a lot of people do feel that lack of a resting activity, so would love to expand on it at some point. I don't have the best answer yet.

I'll be sure let you know in my journal. Interesting that other people struggle with this, too. One thing I've noticed works well for me in the past is something that's "non-verbal" ... by which I mean doesn't involves words or analysis. So instead of reading, writing, listening to a podcast or audiobook, gaming, or something else analytical, etc, try something that engages other parts of the brain - visual, spatial, color, etc. I find that juggling actually can be surprisingly relaxing. Drawing and cross-stitching are things I've done in the past that also evoke similar feelings. It just engages another part of the brain, doesn't take too much effort, and allows you to turn off that more analytical side that (for me anyway) is running almost all the time. I'm guessing pretty much anything artistic would help here... maybe playing instruments as well.

Though the thing is these all can still require a certain amount of effort. A true resting activity might be different still. I'll think and experiment and see what I can come up with.

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Random post. I'm feeling kind of lonely right now and missing a friend of mine. I've also been having cravings for gaming, which makes perfect sense, because I definitely used gaming as a way to deal with negative emotions like loneliness in the past.

But I had this thought in my head: What is the appropriate way to respond to loneliness? How do you "fix" it? Clearly the answer is to go out and connect with people. Make friends and deepen existing relationships. Rather than (unconsciously, without awareness) experiencing loneliness and reacting to it by doing something reflexively to make yourself feel something better - gaming, or worse vices - that really just numb rather than address the core issue.

It's okay to feel things. In fact it's good to feel them rather than resist them or cling to them. Emotions come and go.

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It's okay to feel things. In fact it's good to feel them rather than resist them or cling to them. Emotions come and go.

Exactly. One thing I do when I'm feeling this way is to just reach out to a friend and have a conversation on the phone. That always helps.

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Day 84

Feelings do come and go, and my loneliness has departed me. I had a good time with friends last night, family today, and I'm looking forward to a party tonight :).

I've started using Evernote (again). I'm trying to get all my digital files and writing kind of centralized or at least into a workable system. I'm trying different things out. I have a love/hate relationship with Evernote and have gone through a few cycles with it. I'm trying it again to see if I can find a way to make it work for me. Currently trying out OneDrive for file storage (their web interface is way better than Dropbox IMO, you can work with normal Office files instead of Google Drive weirdness, and since it's just a built in folder on my Windows PC, it's easy to back up to an external drive.)

With OneDrive for storage, Evernote for notes and documentation and records and writing and such, and Pocket for link saving (maybe just use Evernote for this), I'm starting to feel like my digital life is a bit more in order. I'm contemplating whether I'll be able to migrate my work stuff (currently in a work Wiki and OneNote notebooks) to Evernote, or if that would be a painful transition. Dunno! If anyone has a productivity system that works particularly well for them I'd love to hear it!

Gratitude

  1. Evernote being fun.
  2. Conversation with my sister today.
  3. Giving up being right over being kind.
  4. Rain that cleaned my car yesterday.
  5. Party tonight.
  6. Sweater that I bought.
  7. Niece.
  8. Coffee.
  9. Serial Season 2 being out!
  10. Rick and Morty being hilarious and irreverent.

 

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With OneDrive for storage, Evernote for notes and documentation and records and writing and such, and Pocket for link saving (maybe just use Evernote for this), I'm starting to feel like my digital life is a bit more in order. I'm contemplating whether I'll be able to migrate my work stuff (currently in a work Wiki and OneNote notebooks) to Evernote, or if that would be a painful transition. Dunno! If anyone has a productivity system that works particularly well for them I'd love to hear it!

I'm happy with Trello where I plan my actions kanban style. I wrote about it and how I use it in Florian's journal.

I usually bookmark stuff on Chromium which syncs via my Google account. I tend to delete stuff from my Wishlist right away, while info on my Tech Troubleshooting can stay for years.

I chose Dropbox for remote backups since it has a Linux client. Google Photos for its unlimited storage. Google Drive for files I want to see and edit from anywhere, like my training log spreadsheet, or have others access, like surveys. GitHub for code.

I make regular manual backups of my hard drives with a simple rsync script.

All in all I tend to keep only the essentials, with the exception of my local music collection.

I also use a whiteboard for brainstorming, visualizing complex IT projects, papers I want to see (my 90 day no gaming challenge hangs there), and doodling around.

Hope this helps!

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Tom - thanks for the feedback. I might give Trello a shot!

 

Day 85

Last night I went to a party. The last party I went to was on Halloween, so it's been a almost 2 months. I also decided to drink last night, which I haven't done in a while. I used Uber to get home so I wouldn't have to worry about driving. It went great so I'm going to do that more often! Slightly hungover, but feeling okay :).

I ended up having a pretty good time. I was pretty chatty and social and ended up getting 2 girls' numbers which is great! It wasn't really something I was intentionally trying to do... after a while of talking, one girl was just very clearly interested in me, so I figured I would ask for her number and it was no big deal. Later in the night I ended up talking with another girl and we hit it off fairly well too. This was towards the end of the party, and we were both talking about leaving so we ended up getting an Uber together. It was like 1:30AM, and we were hungry, so we got Mexican food (naturally) and talked for an hour or so. She was really cool and I enjoyed talking with her, so I'm going to text her later and see how it goes.

I guess my mindset going into the party was that I was interested in meeting women, and clearly I did, but I didn't have any specific goal in mind. The first woman I was interested in in the moment, but after I started talking to other people I started to feel less interested in her. I feel kind of bad because I'm sure she wants me to text her but I don't know that I will. I almost feel like I asked for her number because I just wanted to see if I could get it - I was kind of surprised that I was able to hold her interest and so I kind of thought - wait, can I actually do this? Am I good at this? Haha. In the future it would probably be better for me to be honest with myself - am I really interested in this person? Anyway, it was a learning experience. Maybe there's no harm in it. I'm learning that apparently I am attractive and it's not all that hard to get women interested in me, if recent events are any indication. Mating Grounds podcast - it works! Also not gaming and developing social skills, that helps too! :D 

The second woman I felt more of a connection to though and would like to see again. She seemed pretty level-headed and intelligent, both of which are important to me. But what I'm also feeling is that even though I'm enjoying meeting people, I'm not interested in having anything more than casual dating now... if that. Focusing on myself lately has felt really good! And I don't want to stop that. So that's something else to be aware of.

I was skyping with my friend Kelsey and telling her about my night and she said I seem like a completely different person than I used to be haha. For the better, I think.

Gratitude

  1. Friends giving me a lift to the party.
  2. Drinking, but not too much.
  3. The exchange I'm having with Marchosias in his journal.
  4. All the ugly Christmas sweaters at the party.
  5. Dog at the party.
  6. Meeting new people.
  7. Getting more experience talking to women.
  8. Bonfire!
  9. A day to recover and read at home.
  10. My upcoming vacation!

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Day 86

Quick entry today. So yesterday I texted the one girl I was interested in from the party. She hadn't responded by the time I went to sleep, so I was starting to wonder if she would get back to me or not. When I woke up this morning I saw that she ended up sending me a text at 1AM, and the text makes it seem like she's still interested. So that's good. So we'll probably get coffee and then I'll how it goes. The flip-side of this is that I'm realizing how much emotional effort can go into dating. I'm trying to care less about rejection, when people text me back, how any one particular interaction goes, etc, because it's just too exhausting to care about it all, especially if you're dating a lot of people in a short time span, I would imagine. This is a good process for me though, because it's making me a bit more resilient when things don't go well, and prevents me from getting overinvested too early.

Second thought. I was listening to a podcast about Carl Sagan today (Stuff You Should Know). They said that he documented a lot of things about his life, like writing down or making audio notes about every conversation he ever had or something like that. While that might be a bit extreme, I can see the appeal in processing any significant conversation or idea and writing about it. Taking the time to reflect upon significant experience and process it and what it means to you, what you learned from it... it seems like it would help you learn faster. It's like a kind of deliberate practice for personal development.

Gratitude

  1. Not hungover today!
  2. Slept well last night.
  3. Got to work on time.
  4. Work should be fun today.
  5. Watching Saving Private Ryan for the first time with friends last night.
  6. Coffee.
  7. Pleasant desktop backgrounds.
  8. Personal growth.
  9. Gel ink pens.
  10. Burritos.
Edited by kortheo

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Woot! Love seeing the progress you're making, especially when it comes to your mindfulness around social skills. Can't believe you saw Saving Private Ryan for the first time last night. Where have you been? :P

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Woot! Love seeing the progress you're making, especially when it comes to your mindfulness around social skills. Can't believe you saw Saving Private Ryan for the first time last night. Where have you been? :P

I was never super interested in WW2 growing up. My friends have a list of war movies that I have to watch now, so I'm going to try to work on that backlog haha.

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Woot! Love seeing the progress you're making, especially when it comes to your mindfulness around social skills. Can't believe you saw Saving Private Ryan for the first time last night. Where have you been? :P

I was never super interested in WW2 growing up. My friends have a list of war movies that I have to watch now, so I'm going to try to work on that backlog haha.

I can also recommend Wolfgang Petersen's 'Das Boot'. It's German with English subtitles, but the movie is absolutely brillant and very realistic - filmed after an eye witness account/book by Lothar Günther Buchheim. The travels of a German submarine during WW2. That's basically it.

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Day 86

Today was tough from a personal perspective. When my ex and I broke up a couple months ago, we agreed to a period of no contact, but that we would try being friends afterwards. Today is the day we agreed we could get back in touch. I think I've put off thinking about her until recently. This has been good in that it's allowed me to move on, but maybe bad in that I've put off processing some things about our relationship. I noticed that she had blocked me on Facebook, and I think Hangouts too, which is understandable but made me worry that she wouldn't want to get back in touch after all. I sent her a text, and she did respond thankfully. She said that she isn't ready to see me yet, but that she will follow up with me next month. Even if we don't work out as friends, I'm glad to have heard from her, rather than her just falling off the face of the earth forever. Relationships are weird - I ended it because it really wasn't working for me. But as friends, I think we would work great, and I hope that can still be the case in the future. I guess complexities like this are just part of life. Anyway, I have no regrets - I know I made the right choices for my life. Gotta look towards the future.

One thing that's been on my mind lately is mindless internet browsing. I notice I do it a lot when I'm bored. I will just automatically check various sites in rotation - Facebook, Reddit, Gamequitters, news sites, blogs, etc. I usually don't get much out of it, because I'm just checking to see if anything new and interesting in there, but there usually isn't. It's a hard habit to break. But what I wish I could do instead is either just sit there and experience the boredom (sometimes our minds do need a break from stimulation), or do something else productive somehow, like reading or even just meditating. We are accustomed to constant stimulation, but it isn't beneficial. I find that intentionally allowing myself to have digital downtime helps me process thoughts and clear my head.

Going to scrounge up some dinner. Over and out.

Gratitude

  1. I'm grateful that GQ's forum has an autosave feature for drafts, because I totally just closed my tab by mistake.
  2. Delicious Thai food for lunch.
  3. Getting a lot of progress made on a work project!
  4. Hearing from my ex.
  5. Rainy weather recently.
  6. Protein powder!
  7. Gaining muscle from bodyweight exercises.
  8. Vacation in 3 days!
  9. (Another) holiday party this weekend.
  10. Getting my replacement license in the mail! I am no longer identity-less.

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Hi Travis, it's great to see how you've been going since I last checked your journal.

Nice job on getting your social priorities right and not over-investing, it is understandably a common place to trip up in. You've almost finished the detox, if that was what your count was for.

I don't mean to be pushy, but I don't see any recorded effort to build new habits. It is very helpful you're maintaining gratitude habits within your journal, but how's your exercising and building on other skills? I'd be keen to know how you are developing in these areas :)

Good luck picking up more girls :P haha.

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Hi Travis, it's great to see how you've been going since I last checked your journal.

Nice job on getting your social priorities right and not over-investing, it is understandably a common place to trip up in. You've almost finished the detox, if that was what your count was for.

I don't mean to be pushy, but I don't see any recorded effort to build new habits. It is very helpful you're maintaining gratitude habits within your journal, but how's your exercising and building on other skills? I'd be keen to know how you are developing in these areas :)

Good luck picking up more girls :P haha.

Yeah, it's true that I don't talk about my habits much anymore, I guess because I don't know that they're all that interesting to talk about, and for the moment I have most of what I care about down. But I've developed several since starting. I use coach.me to track my habits. Currently this is what I try to do every day:

  • Sleep at least 8 hours
  • Meditate
  • Exercise
  • Trigger point therapy
  • Write in Journal (here)
  • Daily gratitude
  • Read
  • Drink water
  • Limit caffeine intake
  • No Soda
  • No Sugar
  • No Porn
  • No Video Games

I'm not perfect but I tend to do well enough at keeping these going. I don't feel like I have too much more room in my day for new habits, unless they're simple things.

There are some additional habits that I would like to cultivate:

  • Budgeting expenses
  • Cooking/eating healthy
  • Avoid mindless internet browsing

I think beyond habits at this point I'm more focused on pushing myself to try new things, gain new experiences, develop new relationships. 

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Day 87

Having a good day today. Work is going well. Feeling better after last night.

I feel a slow snowball effect beginning to start with Evernote. I'm learning more about it and starting to use it. It has so many cool features! I was playing with the Business Card capture feature this morning. I have an envelope full of business cards at work that I never have bothered to do anything with, but today I scanned a few. You just take a picture of the card with your phone, and it uses OCR to extract information as text automatically, so that you have a searchable record and can easily access the person's contact info. Very handy! I love being organized, but I've always struggled to choose one tool. I inevitably switch my mood from digital to paper. I'm realizing though that Evernote is the perfect tool for this, since they have such an easy way to scan in documents, and even sell notebooks that work well when scanning to the software. It even does OCR on handwriting, although I'm not sure how well that works. But in my more paper and pen oriented phases, I can always take notes and still capture them into Evernote for reference. It's exciting to slowly build it into a tool that I could use in every area of my life... I can see why it has such devoted users.

Every once in a while I'll get a craving for games, and every time I have to make a conscious choice to do something better for me instead. Over time that starts to become powerful... when you realize how you have intentionally spent your time well and invested in yourself. Feels good.

Gratitude

  1. Evernote!
  2. Work BBQ lunch!
  3. Vacation in 2 days!
  4. 90 day milestone in 3 days!
  5. Getting organized.
  6. Wrapping up projects at work.
  7. Not feeling anxiety about insomnia.
  8. Having a wireless network at work that I created (work project) :)
  9. Getting to know coworkers better.
  10. Solving problems

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That's a long list of new habits! You're doing great in that sense :). If mindless internet browsing is a problem for you, then perhaps limiting the time you spend on certain sites might help. I believe there was a chrome extension for that.

I am sitting on the fence about limiting my sugar intake, I would be having to spend a lot of time finding new foods to eat as a lot of the foods I currently eat contain added sugar. What's your  take on it?

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That's a long list of new habits! You're doing great in that sense :). If mindless internet browsing is a problem for you, then perhaps limiting the time you spend on certain sites might help. I believe there was a chrome extension for that.

I am sitting on the fence about limiting my sugar intake, I would be having to spend a lot of time finding new foods to eat as a lot of the foods I currently eat contain added sugar. What's your  take on it?

To be fair, some of these were existing habits before I started Gamequitters; I didn't start from scratch. But I did recommit to some and create several new ones. This is just my current list!

Sugar intake: well, it's pretty clear that refined carbs / sugar is pretty bad for us. You can go hardcore full paleo / ketogenic diet, but that's not really my thing, at least not yet. I'm taking a more modest approach. Simply cutting out full sugar soda will do someone a lot of good if they currently drink soda. I try to avoid overly sweet desserts or anything else with tons of added sugar, and candy or anything that basically just is sugar. It's not that hard to do. This isn't the same thing as limiting all carbs, even though bread or pasta is from a biochemical standpoint basically just as bad for you. I think you can cut out a huge chunk of carbs by avoiding certain foods fairly easily - so basically just dessert and soda. But everything is in about moderation ultimately. I don't beat myself up for lapses, I just try to do the best that I can.

 

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