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Everything in moderation, not so true

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Hey guys, I just joined this website. So like most of you I played games since I was 14. Pretty much just mmorpg games. I've literally played them all. I would spend countless hours playing. Any and all free time I had went to gaming. I use to be so addicted I would come home at lunch from school to play for 15 mins and then go back. I'm 26 now and knew I needed a change.

I decided to game in moderation to take control of my addiction. I would play for just 2 hours a day max. This shortly turned into 3 hours, then 4 ect.... The problem was even when I wasn't gaming I was thinking about it. I would still give up doing certain activities or look forward to my girlfriend to take a nap so I could play. As sad as it sounds the time I could game would fuel me and I didnt find much pleasure in the stuff I was doing to just waste time till I could play. Its that itch at the back of your mind that knows gaming is just at your finger tips anytime. I would then uninstall all my games for a week. Just to reinstall them again after finding reasons to justify it. I probably uninstalled LoL 35 times. That's when I realized things need to change. Obviously gaming in moderation wasn't working out. I figured if I enjoyed it what hurt to just play in moderation. That's the problem with addiction though. Moderation doesn't work because if you have even a little taste of that "drug" Its so easy to get pulled back in. Ya maybe someone with a healthy gaming routine could do moderation but for someone like me I realized it wont work. 

About 2 months ago I deleted all my games and haven't played since. My life has positively improved greatly. I now don't dread going to work because its actually something thats improving my life and occupies my day. Before I couldn't wait to get home just to game so work felt like such a long chore. Things  I would ignore before like playing music or reading books are now fun. I think the problem before is why would I even bother doing this stuff if I can have way more fun gaming. So when I actually played my guitar it didn't fulfill me before. Now that I'm not getting the constant stimulate of games I can enjoy playing my guitar and not feel rushed to get it over with so I can game.

Recently though even though I know my life is WAYYYY better when I'm not gaming, I still constantly think about it. It's the nostalgia of all the great times I had gaming growing up. I really did love playing and adventuring though an open sandbox world that I could change at my will. I feel almost like I will never fully be as happy as I was as a kid gaming. Iv'e been debating installing and playing ONLY single player games as those were never really a problem for me. By making these "RULES" I believe I'm just tricking myself into thinking I can get that taste again. I know though it will only turn into an addicting all over again. I think the fond memories I have so much not is necessarily due to the games but more so the time of my life. When i was a kid i had no worries. I went to school, hung out with friends and gamed. Now Im a adult I have to pay bills, work full time, do chores, buy groceries ect.. So maybe my nostalgia is more linked to a easier time than the actually games themselves. 

I would like to also add I suffered from crippling anxiety and depression growing up and still somewhat do on and off. It's not as bad as it use to be but I used games as a way to escape and distract myself. Some days I find myself worried that I don't have enough things to fill my spare time that I'm trapped with myself and don't have that same escape I did when I gamed. I know these are deeper issues I need to resolve instead of using gaming to cover them up. I'm sure many of you can relate. 

I can tell you though I've never felt as free before until that moment I deleted all my games 2 months ago, it felt like a huge weight was lifted off my chest. It felt like I had so much time now to live life without this obligation to play everyday. This at the same time though opened up worry of filling this free time which I still havent full figured out yet. 

In the end I know the only way to truly be free is to play no games at all, please convince me single player games won't solve anything. I already know the answer but it would be nice to hear from some of you. Thanks for listening to my story and I know its a lot of text to read. 

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Hey bro, I can definetelly relate.You are right, single player is just a story you tell your self to go back at it,you must not give in, hold strong.

It's really important  we understand that we only remember the "good times" .we tend to for get the feelings of emptiness, the feelings of physical , emotional and mental fatigue after a long gaming session.The depressing moments when you've wasted whole days in the computer wondering why days pass you  by so fast.I watched my body and my health deteriorate while spending countless hours gaming. I watch my relationships with non game friends were crubbling , I was completely indefferent about what is going on in the world or in the live a of people close to me and what did I do about it?I gamed.Only thing thats mattered  was getting my fix from video game s. 

We lie to ourselves thinking of the "awesome times" spent gaming,when in fact it wasnt tha great,it was a miserable life style ,at least for me.

I played video games as a kid too,much like you and I remember some fun times.But when I was a kid(or a teen) I had fun pretty much anywhere.Looking back, I regret missing out on so many things at highschool ...having a girlfriend , continuing  in football and chess clubs ,having more social interactions and meeting more people , facing my demons earlier in life.You mentioned anxiety and depression,those and many more are issues I havev struggled with. I regret not trying to face these earlier and postponing...not  facing my fears and shortcomings by indulging into gaming till I was so numb I could cut one arm off and feel completely nothing

The one thing I really despise about the times I was completely addicted to gaming  was being slave to my emotional and my urges.The lack of  any self control , the lack of integrity when you say to your self just 1 game and you get up after 10 game ,the feelings that some imaginary world had so much power over your will, your emotional and your life, that is what I "hate" most about the times I spent gaming.

Bottom line is, it's really east to fool ourselfs and idealising about the gaming life style.

We are hardwired to remember only the good stuff.Even in relationships, Sometimes we dont get a long we people from family/friends or significant others,we go out seperate ways ...after a whole we tend to only remember The beat times with that other personal completely oblivious to all the pain and friction that we went through.

Life can be great , but life is what you makes it ,right to makes your life better and for hapiness and well being , the everyday struggle is what makes life interesting.Fuck video  games

Edited by addict10n

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Thanks man I really needed to hear that today. I was so close to installing some single player games like skyrim. But to be honest single player games bore the crap out of me anyways. It's the competition of online games I always enjoyed.

Your completely right we only remember the good times. I've definitely had some rough days wasted gaming. One game turns into ten.

Like o said my problem is when I'm gaming everything else comes second and just seems so damn boring. But when I'm not gaming I enjoy the little things in life 100% more.

My struggle right now is to find something to do when it's night time. I'm not tired enough to go to bed but I'm too tired to read or exercise. I just lay there staring at the wall lol. During this time of usually hop on a game for a hour or two before bed

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That's why gaming in moderation is bad in my opinion. This almost always leads to losing your progress. 

Night time is my problem too. Hope you will share answer of you find it. 

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About night time, maybe listening to audiobooks or music would be a good solution? I am not a big fan of audiobooks because I am a "visual learner" and to remember something well I have to see it ;) so with audiobooks I have to concentrate closely on what I am listening to in order to retain information, and as a result I cannot listen to them while doing something else at the same time. So I gave up on listening to them, since there is really not much point in doing so if I don't remember them well. But if you don't have problems like that, audiobooks are definitely an option to consider.

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