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AlexTheGrape

My Journal - Alex

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Alex, I feel you man, I've attempted to quit games like 5 or 6 times now and whenever I relapsed I definitely felt bad about it. The important thing is to NOT see relapse as a failure - it is NOT a failure. In fact, failure does not even exist. It is an emotion that humans have invented to label results. And that's all there are - the actions we take, and the results that come as a consequence of said actions. The best part is that you have a choice - you can view undesirable results as a failure, or you can ask yourself "What can I do differently next time to achieve a different result?"

"I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work." - Thomas Edison

And to truly bring it into perspective, check this out: http://www.uky.edu/~eushe2/Pajares/OnFailingG.html Some of the greatest minds in history have "failed" numerous times. What they had in common is that they didn't give up!

That to me is the most crucial part: you cannot give up. You've got to believe in yourself and believe that anything you set your mind to is possible.

As far as your family being disappointed in you, that is very unfortunate. I would explain to them that what you're trying to do is a process and sometimes you're going to take a few steps backwards. Try to explain to them that it is at those times that you start to relapse that you need their support the most. It is easy to do things when we're motivated and energized, but the true test of our mettle comes when doubt, fear, anxiety, etc. start to creep in and dominate our thoughts. That's when you need the support of your loved ones the most.

I can definitely tell you that I believe in you. You absolutely can do it. You have made amazing progress. Try to keep that in mind when you get down on yourself. :)

And if all else fails, you can sit there and listen to some uplifting music. I've found that helps me a LOT to get back on track. Some suggestions:

Bon Jovi - It's My Life
Brian McKnight - Win
Demi Lovato - Skyscraper
Eminem - Not Afraid (not recommended if you're sensitive to vulgar language)
Gloria Estafan - Reach
Jimmy Eat World - The Middle
Jordin Sparks - You Gotta Want It
Josh Groban - Don't Give Up
Josh Groban - You Raise Me Up
Katy Perry - Firework
Kelly Clarkson - Stronger (this is about a boy, but there's no reason you can't look at it as moving on from your past self that's holding you back!)
Mariah Carey - Hero
Marian Carey, Whitney Houston - When You Believe
Roberta Gold - You Gotta Want It (by far my favorite!)
Shaggy - Hope
Treat - Roar

Hope this helps, and good luck in your journey! :)

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Thank you very much Tom, I have edited the square on the site you mentioned to make it include my own pursuits, and I have made it my desktop background. Those three things are exactly what I need, except I'm having trouble with finding things I enjoy that are readily available for me to do/use. Cheers for the help!

Thank you to the moon and back jaylajkosz, that was definitely inspirational! I suppose it won't be a failure just as long as I persist and continue on the game quitting path. I am finding your list of motivational songs very helpful, I will make sure to use them if all else fails.

For now I will try and find things that I will find fun and hopefully find purpose that will motivate me to pursue my goals. 

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Thank you very much Tom, I have edited the square on the site you mentioned to make it include my own pursuits, and I have made it my desktop background. Those three things are exactly what I need, except I'm having trouble with finding things I enjoy that are readily available for me to do/use. Cheers for the help!

Thank you to the moon and back jaylajkosz, that was definitely inspirational! I suppose it won't be a failure just as long as I persist and continue on the game quitting path. I am finding your list of motivational songs very helpful, I will make sure to use them if all else fails.

For now I will try and find things that I will find fun and hopefully find purpose that will motivate me to pursue my goals. 

Dude don't just listen to that music when all else fails. Do it all the time when you can!

I can tell you from experience that pounding positivity into your head as often as you can works WONDERS! You won't see immediate changes but over time you'll find that you're much more motivated, energized, positive, etc., and can go on MUCH longer before the breaking point where you give up and have to start again.

I have that music that I listen to in my car whenever I am driving around. I have printed and taped inspirational quotes all around my room. I have replaced all my desktop wallpapers with stuff that has positive messages (I have attached these files to this post in case you want to check them out!). I also plan on starting a "vision board" where I have pictures describing my goals and dreams on them.

And yeah, the ONLY time you'll have failed is when you give up. As long as you do not give up, it's impossible to fail.

"It's hard to beat a person who never gives up." - Babe Ruth
"You're never a loser until you quit trying." - Mike Ditka
"Many of life's failures are experienced by people who didn't realize how close they were to success when they gave up." - Thomas Edison

So just keep on keeping on. Success is inevitable to those who never quit. :)

EDIT: One other VERY CRUCIAL thing to remember is that for many of us, we are attempting to undo YEARS of addiction, as well as all the other shit that came about due to said addiction. It cannot happen overnight. Falling down is inevitable, and a very healthy part of growth. The best lessons are often learned when we fall down I think. :)

Wallpaper.zip

Edited by jaylajkosz

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So just keep on keeping on. Success is inevitable to those who never quit. :)

EDIT: One other VERY CRUCIAL thing to remember is that for many of us, we are attempting to undo YEARS of addiction, as well as all the other shit that came about due to said addiction. It cannot happen overnight. Falling down is inevitable, and a very healthy part of growth. The best lessons are often learned when we fall down I think. :)

Wallpaper.zip

Thank you again jaylajkosz, I cannot thank you enough for your faithful support. I'll make sure to listen to those songs tomorrow to keep me positive!

You're so right about not giving up; I can't fail if I don't stop trying, my success will be inevitable.

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Attempt II - Day 1

I found it very hard to work today, I'm sick of studying and am very confused whether or not to game. I receive support to quit here, and support to game in moderation elsewhere and from my family.

My family opinion has changed to "don't deprive yourself of gaming if that is what you find fun, just as long as you can do it in moderation". This is tempting but I know that I won't be able to play in moderation for long, and not at all when the holidays start.

I think one of the main setbacks I face is that I am essentially slaving away at self improvement by quitting games and not doing enough activities which I find fun.

I am grateful for the ability to choose what to do with my time

I am grateful for the running shoes I got today

I am grateful for the delicious dinner I had today.

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This reminds me of myself whe I tried to quit smoking in the age of 22. Many times I said, after some days without cigarettes, "Oh I know I want to quit smoking... But why shouldnt I? Smoking is so good and it helps me relax" and so I would start smoking again.

Just try it again as long as you dont stop wanting to quit games its all fine. Someday you will do it! Just dont give up!

uhm by the way yes I stopped smoking in the end ;-)

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Attempt II - Day 1

I found it very hard to work today, I'm sick of studying and am very confused whether or not to game. I receive support to quit here, and support to game in moderation elsewhere and from my family.

My family opinion has changed to "don't deprive yourself of gaming if that is what you find fun, just as long as you can do it in moderation". This is tempting but I know that I won't be able to play in moderation for long, and not at all when the holidays start.

I think one of the main setbacks I face is that I am essentially slaving away at self improvement by quitting games and not doing enough activities which I find fun.

I am grateful for the ability to choose what to do with my time

I am grateful for the running shoes I got today

I am grateful for the delicious dinner I had today.

Sometimes it'll definitely feel like a grind. Not every day is going to be fun. The path to winning is not a straight, easy road, but a path that curves, spirals, sometimes backtracks, often has dead ends, and you may find yourself going in circles at times too.

Some people can game in moderation and that's OK. For me personally, I know I can't. If I start to game, I will take it seriously and everything will start to fall off a cliff. So I wouldn't listen too much to the people who say you should start gaming in moderation if you know you can't. Try to explain to them what happens when you start. They may not understand at first but when they see you pushing forward and working hard towards your goals and dreams, they won't think too much about it anymore most likely.

I'd like to challenge you with this question: do you have a strong enough "why" for why you want to quit gaming? My ultimate reason for it is that I do not want to die having left no one behind. I do not want to die alone. I want to start a family and raise amazing children. For me, that goal cannot include gaming. I do not see a scenario where an environment conducive to being an excellent husband and father includes gaming. I visualize it all the time and I know exactly the types of things I'd be doing in that situation.

So, what's your why? Do you have a reason to do this that is much stronger than all the voices that say it's OK to go back to what you were doing before?

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Attempt II - Day 1

I found it very hard to work today, I'm sick of studying and am very confused whether or not to game. I receive support to quit here, and support to game in moderation elsewhere and from my family.

My family opinion has changed to "don't deprive yourself of gaming if that is what you find fun, just as long as you can do it in moderation". This is tempting but I know that I won't be able to play in moderation for long, and not at all when the holidays start.

I think one of the main setbacks I face is that I am essentially slaving away at self improvement by quitting games and not doing enough activities which I find fun.

I am grateful for the ability to choose what to do with my time

I am grateful for the running shoes I got today

I am grateful for the delicious dinner I had today.

As Jay as already said, some days are a grind. Think of those days like the grinding that happens in RPG and MMOs, you're grinding through today so tomorrow you can be better (But this time it's real life). This is the research that will promote you to a new age like in Age of Empires or Mythology. 

When I had these kind of days I just told myself even if it wasn't the most productive day, it was still a +1 because I didn't play video games. 

Everyone has an opinion, but at the end of the day you get to choose what to do, and deep down inside you know what is the best for yourself. 

Everyone needs to stop to have fun, you just gotta find something that is fun! Like Tom I really enjoy listening to music, I listen in my car on the way to university everyday pretty much, and it always keeps me going. When I need a reward, for now that reward tends to be getting to hang out with my girlfriend, unfortunately she is going back to her country soon, so I may need to find some other things to do haha, but one thing at a time!

Did you game on your computer, or on a console? You gotta make it as difficult as possible to relapse in a physical way. If you have a console and a particular game you like to much, maybe you can it online etc. If you relapse again while you're waiting for it to sell, that means you gotta get rid of it ASAP, money is no longer an objective so trade it in at ebgames or donate it somewhere. 

When I was in a game crave mode, it was because I didn't want to do anything. My consoles and tv are in a very tight space, so keeping them unplugged means when I'm craving I'm WAY to lazy to squeeze in their and plug them in. That being said, I didn't play console very much after I got into Uni, so really I uninstalled games + steam and that was it.

If you game on a computer, and you've already tried the uninstall technique, and maybe you changed your password, but maybe you don't want to destroy your account then consider selling your gaming computer and getting a computer that doesn't have the power to play the games that tempt you the most.  

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Attempt II - Day 1

I found it very hard to work today, I'm sick of studying and am very confused whether or not to game. I receive support to quit here, and support to game in moderation elsewhere and from my family.

My family opinion has changed to "don't deprive yourself of gaming if that is what you find fun, just as long as you can do it in moderation". This is tempting but I know that I won't be able to play in moderation for long, and not at all when the holidays start.

I think one of the main setbacks I face is that I am essentially slaving away at self improvement by quitting games and not doing enough activities which I find fun.

I am grateful for the ability to choose what to do with my time

I am grateful for the running shoes I got today

I am grateful for the delicious dinner I had today.

As Jay as already said, some days are a grind. Think of those days like the grinding that happens in RPG and MMOs, you're grinding through today so tomorrow you can be better (But this time it's real life). This is the research that will promote you to a new age like in Age of Empires or Mythology. 

When I had these kind of days I just told myself even if it wasn't the most productive day, it was still a +1 because I didn't play video games. 

Everyone has an opinion, but at the end of the day you get to choose what to do, and deep down inside you know what is the best for yourself. 

Everyone needs to stop to have fun, you just gotta find something that is fun! Like Tom I really enjoy listening to music, I listen in my car on the way to university everyday pretty much, and it always keeps me going. When I need a reward, for now that reward tends to be getting to hang out with my girlfriend, unfortunately she is going back to her country soon, so I may need to find some other things to do haha, but one thing at a time!

Did you game on your computer, or on a console? You gotta make it as difficult as possible to relapse in a physical way. If you have a console and a particular game you like to much, maybe you can it online etc. If you relapse again while you're waiting for it to sell, that means you gotta get rid of it ASAP, money is no longer an objective so trade it in at ebgames or donate it somewhere. 

When I was in a game crave mode, it was because I didn't want to do anything. My consoles and tv are in a very tight space, so keeping them unplugged means when I'm craving I'm WAY to lazy to squeeze in their and plug them in. That being said, I didn't play console very much after I got into Uni, so really I uninstalled games + steam and that was it.

If you game on a computer, and you've already tried the uninstall technique, and maybe you changed your password, but maybe you don't want to destroy your account then consider selling your gaming computer and getting a computer that doesn't have the power to play the games that tempt you the most.  

I'm actually thinking of selling my computer myself and getting a far less powerful machine. I don't need this thing anymore and it actually draws a ridiculous amount of electrical power so I should just look at getting something much less powerful.

As you said, that will also all but destroy the temptation to reinstall Steam or Battle.net for example, and create a new account to keep playing. :)

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Amen I don't either and plus my gaming computer is a space heater in the winter, my room is noticeably hotter than the rest of the house! I haven't decided how I am going to get rid of it, but I will eventually move onto something else in the future.

If you don't want to spend any money you can take a look at your computer specs and maybe take out some of the ram, or maybe remove the video card and use the one that comes with your motherboard. You might be able to make some money by selling these parts. You could also upgrade your harddrive to a SSD with a lot less room for video games (Think 250gb or something, enough room for your OS and your files).

Another option is to switch your operating system to any of the Linux distros, which severely limits what games you can play, but Steam seems to be bringing a lot more games to it so it may not be as good of an option anymore (but, if you are into programming, linux distros are super nice for programming IMO).

Anyone reading this who isn't sure what they can remove or how, feel free to get in touch with me!

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Attempt II Day 2

Today I got much more study done, and saw one of my teachers to help me with some things.

I had a short run this morning (15 mins or so) even though I don't normally do running on days I need to get up at 6. If I keep this up every day I will be running every morning!

I didn't do anything productive on the bus, I will make sure to study on the bus tomorrow, and listen to music at the same time to make a compromise (I would normally just read or listen to music).

Thank you again Jay, the questions you posed really helped me to think about what I wanted to get out of quitting games. I realised that I want to be a more social, motivational person who is not afraid to try new things and takes steps towards their dreams. I have an inkling of other ideas in regards to my dreams and what I want to do in the long run, but that generic model should be enough to get me going for now.

Thank you very much Elegwa, those were some great ideas to view each day more positively without games. The grinding idea I found really relevant, the only difference I will need to be aware of is that I won't be able to see the rewards I shall reap when 'grinding' in real life. I gamed on both a pc and console; I have already 'deleted' my steam account so I'm off pc games, but my twin brother and I share an XBOX 360 which he uses frequently so unfortunately I can't sell those, even if I'd like to. He wants to be a game developer so trying to convince him to change his mind about gaming is fruitless, even if he spends countless hours playing. I have felt regrets in getting rid of my steam account, but I know I can become a better person without gaming. Thank you again for the advice!

Targets for tomorrow:

  • Do at least 7x 50 min chunks of study and study related activities while out studying and 1x 50 min at home
  • Run a longer distance in the same amount of time in the morning (I will set the time to use to 20 minutes)
  • Make another diary entry
  • Do something fun at home!

I am grateful for the consistent flow of feedback and support from the community

I am grateful for my dad helping me realise that gaming actually does harm me by reducing my ability to cope with real life situations and reducing social capability

I am grateful for having water to drink whenever I need it.

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Alex you could also check out podcasts for the bus ride. I really enjoy them and they are a way to be productive without having to force yourself to do work. Try one out, see what you think.

When I quit gaming I had to learn how to have fun again, so if you're struggling with this at times right now, don't worry - it's a process but it will get better.

 

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Attempt II Day 2

Today I got much more study done, and saw one of my teachers to help me with some things.

I had a short run this morning (15 mins or so) even though I don't normally do running on days I need to get up at 6. If I keep this up every day I will be running every morning!

I didn't do anything productive on the bus, I will make sure to study on the bus tomorrow, and listen to music at the same time to make a compromise (I would normally just read or listen to music).

Thank you again Jay, the questions you posed really helped me to think about what I wanted to get out of quitting games. I realised that I want to be a more social, motivational person who is not afraid to try new things and takes steps towards their dreams. I have an inkling of other ideas in regards to my dreams and what I want to do in the long run, but that generic model should be enough to get me going for now.

Thank you very much Elegwa, those were some great ideas to view each day more positively without games. The grinding idea I found really relevant, the only difference I will need to be aware of is that I won't be able to see the rewards I shall reap when 'grinding' in real life. I gamed on both a pc and console; I have already 'deleted' my steam account so I'm off pc games, but my twin brother and I share an XBOX 360 which he uses frequently so unfortunately I can't sell those, even if I'd like to. He wants to be a game developer so trying to convince him to change his mind about gaming is fruitless, even if he spends countless hours playing. I have felt regrets in getting rid of my steam account, but I know I can become a better person without gaming. Thank you again for the advice!

Targets for tomorrow:

  • Do at least 7x 50 min chunks of study and study related activities while out studying and 1x 50 min at home
  • Run a longer distance in the same amount of time in the morning (I will set the time to use to 20 minutes)
  • Make another diary entry
  • Do something fun at home!

I am grateful for the consistent flow of feedback and support from the community

I am grateful for my dad helping me realise that gaming actually does harm me by reducing my ability to cope with real life situations and reducing social capability

I am grateful for having water to drink whenever I need it.

My pleasure Alex! It doesn't work for everybody but I personally tend to get motivated when someone presents a challenge to me about my goals from time to time.

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Attempt II Day 3

Achieved my goals set yesterday, apart from the fact that I didn't time all my studying but I did about 6 x 50 minutes which is still a big improvement from yesterday. I ran a slightly longer distance, but did so in 14 minutes and 0.06 seconds compared to 15 minutes yesterday. I am making another diary entry, so I can tick that off the list. I managed to get the family to play Settlers of Catan together, which was fun despite me losing by a long shot. 

Goals met, I'm set! Now for some more goals for tomorrow, and will try implementing penalties for not completing tasks for extra motivation. By the way the generosity fund is a penalty I thought of a while ago when going through respawn, but didn't put into practice. It means that if I don't do the required task then I need to put $5 of my own money into a fund that I will later use on spending on friends or random people to start a conversation as a random act of kindness. I'll try trick myself into desiring really lame rewards for completing the tasks, we'll see how it goes.

Goals:

  • Do 7 x 50 minute blocks of study, timed and recorded this time! Otherwise $5 to add to generosity fund. Reward: Extra museli bar in my lunch
  • Run a new course that will take 20 minutes to run. ^^ Same penalty
  • Get in bed and start reading by 8:20 - If I don't do this I will add $5 to my generosity fund. Reward: fruit snack

I had cravings to play Europa Universalis 4 this afternoon, but strangely I unintentionally subdued it by looking at completed games, and saw the amount of time invested in these completed games (about 900 hours+) which scared me I suppose.

I had multiple opportunities to get to know new people today, but I didn't think about the risk factor like I should have. No risk to health = safe, and talking to people develops social skills. Fear of embarrassment needs to be ignored because embarrassment is temporary.

I am grateful for the list of podcasts, motivational videos and music, and books I have accumulated to help me quit games.

i am grateful for socks. My feet just get cold all the time without them.

I am grateful that there are others willing to help me along the path to success.

 

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Attempt II Day 3

Achieved my goals set yesterday, apart from the fact that I didn't time all my studying but I did about 6 x 50 minutes which is still a big improvement from yesterday. I ran a slightly longer distance, but did so in 14 minutes and 0.06 seconds compared to 15 minutes yesterday. I am making another diary entry, so I can tick that off the list. I managed to get the family to play Settlers of Catan together, which was fun despite me losing by a long shot. 

Goals met, I'm set! Now for some more goals for tomorrow, and will try implementing penalties for not completing tasks for extra motivation. By the way the generosity fund is a penalty I thought of a while ago when going through respawn, but didn't put into practice. It means that if I don't do the required task then I need to put $5 of my own money into a fund that I will later use on spending on friends or random people to start a conversation as a random act of kindness. I'll try trick myself into desiring really lame rewards for completing the tasks, we'll see how it goes.

Goals:

  • Do 7 x 50 minute blocks of study, timed and recorded this time! Otherwise $5 to add to generosity fund. Reward: Extra museli bar in my lunch
  • Run a new course that will take 20 minutes to run. ^^ Same penalty
  • Get in bed and start reading by 8:20 - If I don't do this I will add $5 to my generosity fund. Reward: fruit snack

I had cravings to play Europa Universalis 4 this afternoon, but strangely I unintentionally subdued it by looking at completed games, and saw the amount of time invested in these completed games (about 900 hours+) which scared me I suppose.

I had multiple opportunities to get to know new people today, but I didn't think about the risk factor like I should have. No risk to health = safe, and talking to people develops social skills. Fear of embarrassment needs to be ignored because embarrassment is temporary.

I am grateful for the list of podcasts, motivational videos and music, and books I have accumulated to help me quit games.

i am grateful for socks. My feet just get cold all the time without them.

I am grateful that there are others willing to help me along the path to success.

 

Alex, I'm really enjoying following your progress. I'm gonna have to find a way to keep up, haha!

I definitely agree with you about talking to people. There are so many people out there, who cares if you embarrass yourself in front of a few of them! The only way to get better at anything is to practice, and if you don't open your mouth and just start talking, you'll never know what kind of friendships you may have missed out on. It's just not something worth fretting about. The added bonus is that once you get over the fear of doing one thing, I think it becomes easier to conquer other fears as well.

Keep at it Alex, you're doing awesome! :)

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Days 19-26

No excuses. I've relapsed. On the last day of school I felt I needed a ‘reward’ and having been bored for weeks without games; and just started playing games when I saw my brother on Dark Souls 2. I had played about 2 hours a day since Wednesday and the guilt has crept in and my family are disappointed with my lack of commitment.

This feels like a good place to chime in. I've been reading up and I have to say, Alex you've been doing a great job! I totally get feeling guilty, but it's going to take time. I found it very intriguing that you've mentioned Dark Souls 2. I originally went to school for game design but swapped year later into english lit because as I discovered I'm just awful at math, but I digress. 

Lets dig a little deeper into why the souls games are appealing. I played Dark Souls thoroughly and only beat 2 once. Here's what I've learned from it: The game itself doesn't want to hold your hand. Of course it wants you to finish it and enjoy the content but it's by all means not easy. Let's apply this same concept to life. Boss fights in the game can be brutal to the point where others would throw their controller in frustration, but others stick it out and figure out ways to succeed.  Of course it's a video game and the rules and path are more or less set in front of you, but I thought it was rather sobering that it was a great representation of the path we all struggle on. 

Ultimately we're here because games have affected us Negatively now more so positively. And I'm sorry if using games to point out some of the positive things may stur up some cravings, but it's about learning from the mistakes to succeed :) 

 

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Days 19-26

No excuses. I've relapsed. On the last day of school I felt I needed a ‘reward’ and having been bored for weeks without games; and just started playing games when I saw my brother on Dark Souls 2. I had played about 2 hours a day since Wednesday and the guilt has crept in and my family are disappointed with my lack of commitment.

This feels like a good place to chime in. I've been reading up and I have to say, Alex you've been doing a great job! I totally get feeling guilty, but it's going to take time. I found it very intriguing that you've mentioned Dark Souls 2. I originally went to school for game design but swapped year later into english lit because as I discovered I'm just awful at math, but I digress. 

Lets dig a little deeper into why the souls games are appealing. I played Dark Souls thoroughly and only beat 2 once. Here's what I've learned from it: The game itself doesn't want to hold your hand. Of course it wants you to finish it and enjoy the content but it's by all means not easy. Let's apply this same concept to life. Boss fights in the game can be brutal to the point where others would throw their controller in frustration, but others stick it out and figure out ways to succeed.  Of course it's a video game and the rules and path are more or less set in front of you, but I thought it was rather sobering that it was a great representation of the path we all struggle on. 

Ultimately we're here because games have affected us Negatively now more so positively. And I'm sorry if using games to point out some of the positive things may stur up some cravings, but it's about learning from the mistakes to succeed :) 

 

Thank you Octsober, it actually was a very sobering thought to be reminded that life holds challenges similar to games, but that the path is not set out before us in real life.

I was also needed to be reminded that gaming as an adult generally has more negative effects than positive, which is why I searched out game quitters in the first place. I'll do my best to learn from my mistake and move on :)

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Attempt II Day 4

Its past my 'bed time' so I'll make it quick.

I disappointingly didn't meet my running goal or work goal today; it was rainy most of the day so I didn't do the morning run and didn't go to the library to study and so didn't get the desired quantity of study done.

I have the same goals for tomorrow, same penalties and rewards.

I have been mostly confused during the day, mulling over whether my decision to quit gaming is well founded or not. After some meditation I was able to study better and  lean towards the idea that I can improve myself: I have tried and tested what gaming is like but not for self improving for at least 3 months.

If anybody can pitch in some related ideas on why quitting is better in the long/short term I would really appreciate it!

I downloaded some podcasts, so I will put those to good use tomorrow!

I am grateful for the game quitting gurus that hover through the community

I am grateful for being able to play Settlers of Catan the board game again with the family this afternoon, I won my first game in ages!

I am grateful for the consistent flow of suggestions that are posted on the forum!

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Attempt II Day 4

Its past my 'bed time' so I'll make it quick.

I disappointingly didn't meet my running goal or work goal today; it was rainy most of the day so I didn't do the morning run and didn't go to the library to study and so didn't get the desired quantity of study done.

I have the same goals for tomorrow, same penalties and rewards.

I have been mostly confused during the day, mulling over whether my decision to quit gaming is well founded or not. After some meditation I was able to study better and  lean towards the idea that I can improve myself: I have tried and tested what gaming is like but not for self improving for at least 3 months.

If anybody can pitch in some related ideas on why quitting is better in the long/short term I would really appreciate it!

I downloaded some podcasts, so I will put those to good use tomorrow!

I am grateful for the game quitting gurus that hover through the community

I am grateful for being able to play Settlers of Catan the board game again with the family this afternoon, I won my first game in ages!

I am grateful for the consistent flow of suggestions that are posted on the forum!

Hey Alex,

I cannot speak for you of course but the main reason that I want to quit video games is because I KNOW in my heart of hearts that I will die full of regret if I don't. Whenever I start playing video games, everything else in my life takes a back seat. It can be easy to question the decision early on when we start to think about the video games we've played and get lost in nostalgia, so that's why we need a very powerful reason, a goal that we're working towards that doesn't leave room for something as time consuming as video games.

Some days it's going to be a slog but as long as you have that reason, you can always pick yourself up and get back on track! :)

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I'm similar to Jay. It's not that gaming is bad, but I have different priorities. If I was still gaming over the past few years instead of moving on, I wouldn't have traveled to 22 countries, started my own business (which gives me a lot of freedom and flexibility, instead of having to work a normal job), I wouldn't have shared my story on TEDx, Game Quitters wouldn't exist, I wouldn't have lived in Los Angeles or Colorado, gone surfing in Bali, California and Panama, met a woman I fell in love with in Vancouver, etc etc.

For me it's similar to what you said, I had tried gaming, I spent 10+ years putting all of my efforts into it, and it was fun and all that but at the end of the day, after 10+ years of gaming, I had played some games and had some fun killing bosses, but I still felt depressed, had very few friends, was unemployed living in my parents basement and didn't have a girlfriend. So 10+ years of gaming got me those results.

So were those the results I really wanted? NO.

So I tried a different path, one without gaming and instead focused my efforts on personal development and I'm in year 6 of that... and my results are much different. Are they the results I wanted? YES. And I'm still learning and growing.

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Hey Alex, I'm always glad to help! You could bug your brother into developing a game, or at least getting into programming if he already isn't. One could watch all the movies in the world, or play all the games in the world, but that doesn't make you a good director or developer. 

Whenever I am thinking about something too much, or something is monopolizing my time I try and get some exercises in, I find that if something it bugging you nothing helps you get over it more than a decent workout. Maybe that is just me, but hopefully that will help you.

Jay and Cam have already weighed in and have said it really well. But I'll come in anyways and say as well that deep down inside me I knew that my life as a gamer no longer had any meaning. Not only that, but that the video games were playing me and not the other way around. When I ask myself what I want to be in the future, no where in that equation is "on a couch playing video games". I want to be speaking Portuguese on a beach in my girlfriends city in Brazil, or teaching English in a classroom in South Korea somewhere, or working on my PH.D somewhere, on something important to me. There are many things I want to do in my life, for my own enjoyment and hopefully to the benefit of others.
I have the feeling that I cannot be that person while playing video games for 6 hours everyday, or playing video games until 6 am from the night before and waking up at 4pm with a headache and no desire to get work done. Even if I only played for 1-2 hours a day, that is an hour I could have spent studying Portuguese, that's 2 hours I could have spent studying for school and raising my mark so I can get into a masters program, that's 6 hours I could have spent working and saving money so I can go to my girlfriends city. That is an evening I could have spent with my girlfriend, or a night out (or in) with real friends who have opinions of depth on things other than video games (and accept me for who I am).

Jay had it right when he challenge you to create some goals, so now anytime you feel like you want to play video games, tell yourself it's one more hour, one more MINUTE of time you can instead spend on improving yourself, and moving 1 minute, 1 hour, 1 day closer to your goals.

 

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If anybody can pitch in some related ideas on why quitting is better in the long/short term I would really appreciate it!g

Hi Alex, I think that quitting video games (or any other addiction) means you are again the master of your own life. Without video games, you are forced to find the meaning in your own life. That can be a long process, and maybe in the end you find that you do want to play video games now and then again, but then it will be out of your own decision, not because it has become a habit. You want control back in your life and setting your own goals.

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 I cannot speak for you of course but the main reason that I want to quit video games is because I KNOW in my heart of hearts that I will die full of regret if I don't. Whenever I start playing video games, everything else in my life takes a back seat. It can be easy to question the decision early on when we start to think about the video games we've played and get lost in nostalgia, so that's why we need a very powerful reason, a goal that we're working towards that doesn't leave room for something as time consuming as video games.

Some days it's going to be a slog but as long as you have that reason, you can always pick yourself up and get back on track! :)

Cheers Jay, that's a very good point.

Likewise when I play games, studying, spending time with family, chores and most daily tasks become a lot more challenging mentally, and 'takes a back seat' in priority as you mentioned. I don't want to be that type of person, and I know that if I was consistently feeling guilty of playing games, there was good reason for me to stop. I even purposely messing up save files to stop myself from playing, I definitely was not in control of my habits, the game had control of me.

I keep thinking of what lifelong goals I want to have, and something I know for certain that I want to be helping people every day as that is something which I find fulfillment in. I would want to play to my strengths for a career but I will find my purpose in time.

Something I heard from a podcast from 'The Art of Charm' this afternoon is to forgive yourself for when you do something wrong and just pick up from where you left off with the attitude to do better. I will make sure to put this perspective to use when going through those days that are a slog.

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I'm similar to Jay. It's not that gaming is bad, but I have different priorities. If I was still gaming over the past few years instead of moving on, I wouldn't have traveled to 22 countries, started my own business (which gives me a lot of freedom and flexibility, instead of having to work a normal job), I wouldn't have shared my story on TEDx, Game Quitters wouldn't exist, I wouldn't have lived in Los Angeles or Colorado, gone surfing in Bali, California and Panama, met a woman I fell in love with in Vancouver, etc etc.

For me it's similar to what you said, I had tried gaming, I spent 10+ years putting all of my efforts into it, and it was fun and all that but at the end of the day, after 10+ years of gaming, I had played some games and had some fun killing bosses, but I still felt depressed, had very few friends, was unemployed living in my parents basement and didn't have a girlfriend. So 10+ years of gaming got me those results.

So were those the results I really wanted? NO.

So I tried a different path, one without gaming and instead focused my efforts on personal development and I'm in year 6 of that... and my results are much different. Are they the results I wanted? YES. And I'm still learning and growing.

Thank you Cam, that was very good food for thought.

It is true that I have much better priorities outside of gaming, bad habits can make gaming top priority despite having little positive impact on living.

I need to make sure that I give quitting games and improving myself a shot for at least 90 days straight so that I can feel the positive impact of good habits. I don't know what things I could do in the future, but it is guaranteed to be a heck of a lot better without gaming.

Thank you for your continued support!

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