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seriousjay

Jay's Epic Journey

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Check this video out by my brother Kinja Dixon! Think it might be insightful for you.

Thanks!

OK so my post for today.

I did everything I said I was going to do first thing in the morning. I watched Cam's videos for getting motivated after quitting gaming and the difference between abstinence and recovery from video games. A common theme in these videos further reinforced in the first one was the need for a greater purpose after video games, otherwise it becomes really easy to go back to gaming because everything else seems pointless. To be honest, the message in the second video pretty much felt the same, just worded in a different way.

When reading Changing For Good, going through the pre-contemplation section of the book, it struck me quite vividly that, at least with respect to a fast food addiction, I really don't know a whole hell of a lot about the negative effects of it. One way to break out of pre-contemplation into contemplation is through consciousness raising, which is simply the act of learning more about your problem. I know some of the symptoms of obesity, too much sugar, etc., but not a whole hell of a lot specifically, so that might be something to work on going forward.

Last thing, I felt a very strong craving tonight to go to Mac's and grab some junk to eat but I managed to not do that. Really amazing how hard it is to fight these cravings..

OK that's all for today!

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Haha that's an old school video! 

Yeah but a good one! :)

I'm working night shifts for the next few days so my posts will be coming shortly after I complete my tasks.

Speaking of old school videos, today I watched the video on whether or not video games should be quit cold turkey. There is a rather powerful message embedded in that video which essentially comes down to that if you are serious about quitting video games, then you've got to do it cold turkey, otherwise you won't be allowing yourself to experience the full breadth of life without video games. You can decide after the 90 days if you still want video games to be a part of your life or not.

While reading Changing For Good, I got to the section about helping relationships during the pre-contemplation stage. I realized that while I do a good job of enlisting aid for my video game issue, I don't think I do for my fast food problem. So on top of simply learning more about the symptoms associated with problem eating, I think I also need to get more help in trying to overcome it as well. That being said, I'm not quite sure how that's going to help. The book talks about using help in this stage to help you get past your defenses. So maybe I'll bring that up with my accountability partner next time.

Also I had a pretty good day of visualizations today. The images were a little more impactful than usual so it seems like something is happening! Hooray!

OK that's it for now!

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Check this video out by my brother Kinja Dixon! Think it might be insightful for you.

Well this is really cool, and I also had a different thought about this as well that directly applies to me. How many times do we tell ourselves while in the process of doing absolutely nothing to go and do something productive, and then end up denying that voice? That's another area where we can really end up sabotaging ourselves..

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Check this video out by my brother Kinja Dixon! Think it might be insightful for you.

Well this is really cool, and I also had a different thought about this as well that directly applies to me. How many times do we tell ourselves while in the process of doing absolutely nothing to go and do something productive, and then end up denying that voice? That's another area where we can really end up sabotaging ourselves..

Yep!

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OK post for today.

My visualization wasn't as good as yesterday, I found myself getting constantly distracted. I think restarting meditation soon will be very good for me, I found that helped a lot with maintaining focus.

I watched Cam's video about the fear of missing out and it just continues to reinforce the message that the whole point of quitting video games is about closing one chapter of your life and moving on to a new one that doesn't have video games. Seems to be a recurring theme here but it definitely makes a lot of sense. If you genuinely close that chapter and move on, a lot of these problems won't affect you so much.

When reading Changing For Good, I found out something very interesting, that I don't seem to be leveraging social situations to help me change anywhere near as much as I could be. I mean, I pretty much knew this already, but to have it spelled out for me opened my eyes a bit. Just taking an objective look at my situation, I don't put myself in social situations that are designed to help me change my behaviours, and that's something that's got to change as I believe that can be a very powerful tool for getting your desired results.

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I basically just say the same thing in every video just in another way. 75 times so far. Haha.

Heh. That's awesome!

So my activity over the next little while may be sporadic. I have just learned that my cousin has died of a stroke. This has never, ever happened to anyone this close to me in my family so I am not sure how I'll react to it over the next little while. So far I'm OK but it still feels very surreal.

OK, off to do my daily things!

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OK this loss has affected me much more deeply than I thought. I can't stop thinking about it. Nevertheless, life must go on.

I did one of my two visualizations today. Distractions are a little overwhelming right now so I stopped at that.

I watched Cam's video on gaming being the only thing you're good at, and I identified with a lot that he talked about. What immediately came to mind was Malcolm Gladwell's 10,000 hour theory - that in order to achieve mastery in any field, one must spend 10,000 hours in intentional practice. Although this theory has apparently been debunked, I largely agree with it. I think the missing element here though is belief in self. Two people may spend 10,000 hours of intentional practice on something, but the quality of that practice may differ and I think the quality is largely driven by one's belief in what one is doing.

Also, while reading Changing For Good today, I was reading up about foolish freedom and I found it rather interesting. Foolish freedom in the book is defined as reactionary - it is the freedom to resist any internal or external forces that try to change you simply for the sake of having control of things. Responsible freedom is the act of making choices that are good for you, that are in line with your beliefs, even if someone else is taking control of the situation. If someone is giving you great advice, it makes sense to take it, even if in the process of doing so, you give up some control in your life.

---

Also wanted to talk about a few things that happened the last couple of days. Two days ago I re-installed Fallout 4 and started playing it. Played for a total of about 5 hours. This morning I deleted all my saves, deleted the game and Steam. I keep going back and forth. Even if all my games are deleted I still find myself browsing Steam or watching streams and honestly I find it really hard to not do that. I think Cam made a great point in his video about playing games in moderation. You have to commit to quitting and REALLY commit. Don't half ass it. The temptations and nostalgia and all that won't go away right away. You just have to ignore it and really commit to quitting. So I really need to have a serious look about how serious I am about quitting games.

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I cant imagine how this must feel. Condolences to you. Life is too fucking short.

Let me tell you man. It sucks. It sucks big time. I was really close to my cousin, to the point of calling him probably my best friend. Right now I can't even sleep, I just can't stop thinking about it. I keep playing scenarios in my head that might have avoided this tragedy, though I know it is ultimately fruitless. I'm sure I'll get over it at some point but right now, it just flat out sucks.

He used to come to my house to watch hockey games, or just to hang out. My dad, brother, him and me had a yearly tradition of going on a weekend fishing trip during the summer. It's going to be extremely awkward and hard to get used to him not being there.

The important thing for me right now is just going to be to remember that this is nobody's fault, and there's nothing that anybody could have done to avoid this. It was a complete and total fluke that happened due to some very unfortunate circumstances. I only hope for two things:

1) That he didn't suffer long before he passed.

2) That I did enough in the short time we spent together to make him feel like life was worth living.

The other important thing will be to try to make something good come out of this horrific situation. Maybe this will inspire me to finally take the steps I need to take to progress further in my growth. As you said, life is just too damn short.

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So last night I got maybe 2.5 hours of sleep. I couldn't stop thinking about different scenarios in which I could have altered the outcome of what happened to my cousin - what if I got a "feeling" that something was wrong and immediately rushed over there, what if I simply called at some point to see what was going on, etc.

I learned today that he actually ended up dying of a heart attack. If it was going to happen regardless, I don't think there is anything anyone could have done to save him at any point during the day, even if things had gone as optimally as possible. Nobody at work is trained in first aid. I imagine this is going to have to change.

Today was the first day at work after what happened and boy oh boy was it ever somber. When I told our employees what happened, everyone was shocked beyond belief. Many tears were shed. We had to spend a few minutes just to collect ourselves before continuing on. I can already sense that nothing is going to be the same and it'll probably be a while before we get back to some form of "normal". As for me, I'm doing a whole lot better today. It finally hit me and pretty hard that he was gone this morning, but after that, and especially after I got home, things started to improve for me. I think I'm going to be able to get over this relatively soon, thankfully.

Also, the funeral is on Sunday. My cousin's family seems to want to get this over with as quickly as possible, and I can't blame them.

Now with all that being said, I did manage to do what I wanted to do today, although not quite in the order I was hoping. I ended up coming home and gaming for a bit, watched a baseball game, and only about half an hour ago did I end up doing my daily stuff, but I did do it and that's the important part for me.

I watched Cam's video on keeping your gamer friends. A lot of great points in it. I think the biggest take away for me is that you don't owe anyone an explanation as to why you're quitting gaming. If they won't respect your decision, then it's probably best to part ways with those people.

Also finished reading the precontemplation section of Changing For Good. There wasn't a huge take away there, other than an example of someone who took years after becoming aware of their problems before they actually ended up moving to the contemplation stage. We can be faced with powerful messages about our problems and still not do anything about them. I think the important part is just identifying our issues and working slowly every day towards solving them. That's about all we can do.

Big thing for me tomorrow will be to not order any food and to do at least one hour of work towards writing. It's a holiday tomorrow so I'll have plenty of time to at least get the latter done.

---

On a side note, does anyone have any possible explanation as to how I was able to seriously pursue quitting video games for over a month and then just suddenly fall off a cliff? The only thing I can think of is that I got really excited about it and that excitement motivated me to continue with it, but once it got too hard, I ended up sliding back to where I was at. I haven't been able to really capture that excitement since.

Edited by jaylajkosz

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On a side note, does anyone have any possible explanation as to how I was able to seriously pursue quitting video games for over a month and then just suddenly fall off a cliff? The only thing I can think of is that I got really excited about it and that excitement motivated me to continue with it, but once it got too hard, I ended up sliding back to where I was at. I haven't been able to really capture that excitement since.

Could be some truth to it. The excitement didn't get you to the promised land, so no need to try and find it again. You need to find what that level of desire is deep inside that will get you over the edge. Most of the time when we start out really excited we hit one setback and boom, back to the start. So no sweat on that. The key is to dig deep now and get really clear on what you want for your life. 

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On a side note, does anyone have any possible explanation as to how I was able to seriously pursue quitting video games for over a month and then just suddenly fall off a cliff? The only thing I can think of is that I got really excited about it and that excitement motivated me to continue with it, but once it got too hard, I ended up sliding back to where I was at. I haven't been able to really capture that excitement since.

Could be some truth to it. The excitement didn't get you to the promised land, so no need to try and find it again. You need to find what that level of desire is deep inside that will get you over the edge. Most of the time when we start out really excited we hit one setback and boom, back to the start. So no sweat on that. The key is to dig deep now and get really clear on what you want for your life. 

Well said. Excitement doesn't last forever anyways. As you said, to truly move forward you must deeply desire that change. I just gotta figure out what it is I really want.

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OK..

Ended up way sleeping in today but that was expected given the amount of sleep I got yesterday.

Visualization just didn't work. I just couldn't get my mind focused on what I wanted to visualize. I'll give it another shot later today.

I watched Cam's video on finding other activities boring. Nothing too surprising there, although I do find that trying new things usually has a short period of excitement before it becomes boring. The physical change part is especially important really highlights the importance of the 90 day detox.

In Changing For Good, I read a paragraph that basically perfectly describes me. There is such a thing as chronic contemplation, which basically means someone who replaces thinking for action. They always search for more and more information on their problem and insist on knowing absolutely everything before actually doing anything. The problem is they never actually get around to doing anything because that need for information never gets satisfied. Additionally, these types of people are also typically scared of the person they will become after change and thus delay change for that reason (the need for information could be an excuse for this very thing). I did mention I had such fears earlier in my journal. It seems I may actually be right in the middle of chronic contemplation so I'll need to find a way to bust out of it.

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I've heard that most people want to find a panaceum for their problems, a golden shot, an information that'll completely change their live before even taking the action.

Even though changing ourselves isn't a bed of roses, it's worth trying!

Greetings, Mad Pharmacist

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I've heard that most people want to find a panaceum for their problems, a golden shot, an information that'll completely change their live before even taking the action.

Even though changing ourselves isn't a bed of roses, it's worth trying!

Greetings, Mad Pharmacist

Hey, yes Changing For Good did talk about that. A lot of people wait for the magic moment where all their problems are solved on their own, or with very little effort. The reality is that this simply doesn't happen.

I agree it's worth trying even if it isn't easy!

OK so my visualizations today again didn't go well. I'm not really feeling any strong emotions about my cousin anymore so I am unsure what might be going on. Maybe a change of scenery would work.

I watched Cam's video about dreams and nightmares. This didn't really affect me personally but I do like the idea of the gratitude journal, which I think works at any time you feel any kind of distressing emotions. It doesn't just have to be because of dreams and nightmares about gaming.

I read the emotional arousal section of Changing For Good. The self assessment part of it made me realize that I don't really face my problems on an emotional level much at all. Emotions are very powerful and can be used to encourage your continued forward progress. I have always felt though that change effected by emotions is temporary most of the time. What do you guys think? I think it's a great tool to get short term benefits but it needs to be accompanied by other techniques to get a more permanent benefit.

Also, I didn't do my writing work yesterday and I ended up ordering food as well.

---

OK so yesterday I installed and played Fallout 4 again, this time for maybe 3 or 4 hours. Predictably, at some point I got really frustrated, realized I wasn't having any fun (at any point, really), and then deleted it again. I was trying to think about why I keep doing this - the result has always been the same. The first thing that comes to mind is the character progression. I like the idea of being able to see my character get stronger, that is pretty appealing to me. The rest of the game, particularly the mode I was playing the game in, I just didn't really care for much. I had already played the crap out of it before so that probably contributes to this substantially.

I'm not really sure how I can redirect that video game character progression into something useful. What do you guys think?

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I feel like the game of life is an alternative. In a way level up your own character by learning new stuff. The key to keep motivation there is to find something where you can measure your success in a obvious fashion. Maybe duolingo or something like this is a good way to start. Body building/strength training is another easy (and healthy) way to see a regular progression. You can basically up your reps every week if you train the right way 3times a week. But the main idea is to see yourself as a charavter you want to invest in. It isn't solely about future benefits(but they may help to motivate you). It is more about valuing the mind and body you have to work with everyday and upgrade it through training.

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I feel like the game of life is an alternative. In a way level up your own character by learning new stuff. The key to keep motivation there is to find something where you can measure your success in a obvious fashion. Maybe duolingo or something like this is a good way to start. Body building/strength training is another easy (and healthy) way to see a regular progression. You can basically up your reps every week if you train the right way 3times a week. But the main idea is to see yourself as a charavter you want to invest in. It isn't solely about future benefits(but they may help to motivate you). It is more about valuing the mind and body you have to work with everyday and upgrade it through training.

Your suggestion is good in theory and it was the first thing I thought of when I made my post. Just not sure how I feel about it. The idea of doing these things seems pretty boring in comparison to leveling up a character in a video game (Cam spoke on this in one of his videos).

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OK.. today is my cousin's visitation and funeral and all that so I'm going to make my post early just so it's done with.

My visualization went better than the last two days but could still be even better.

I watched Cam's video on relapse. I don't really have a whole lot to say about it other than I agree with all the points. The main reason for me to keep gaming is due to boredom at this time. I suppose this is a good time to point out that I started installing Fallout 4 last night - again. It got about halfway done when I just deleted it once again and gave the password to that Steam account back to my brother. I'm still feeling nostalgic towards it but I know that any time I spend there is a complete waste that won't help me progress in life.

When I went through Changing For Good today, it talked a lot about monitoring your progress with respect to the changes you want to make in your life. I just don't do that.. at all, for the most part. It'll probably be quite important for me to begin tracking my progress towards my goals. In fact, I should probably just start taking notes on everything I read. I find what I read sinks in better if I rewrite it in my own words.

I also read an article about the risks of obesity and being overweight. It was quite eye opening to simply have it spelled out for me. Something as seemingly innocuous as being overweight can lead to a ridiculous amount of health complications - some of which, if developed, will hound you for the rest of your life, even if you get back to being otherwise healthy.

OK that's all for now!

Edited by jaylajkosz

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Just a random thought for today.

During the funeral and the proceeding reception, I noticed a lot of people in tears, including some that I'd never thought I'd ever see crying. I mean, this is obviously understandable, but I haven't really felt the same way at all. Some people seem like it'll take them weeks to finally get things to some semblance of normal, but I feel like I'm mostly already there. I'm not THAT bothered about this, as everyone has their own ways of dealing with loss and everyone has their own pace at which they will recover, but I did find it interesting (maybe not the best word but I got nothing else). Probably has a lot to do with my mindset regarding this whole situation.

What concerns me more is that I heard one of the guys who was supposed to be on vacation for a week and a half worked all weekend, and another guy came in and worked another day for free. This kind of stuff just never even comes to mind. I don't know if it's good or bad or what. I want to help where I can but a lot of these types of things just don't even occur to me. What are your guys' thoughts on this?

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What concerns me more is that I heard one of the guys who was supposed to be on vacation for a week and a half worked all weekend, and another guy came in and worked another day for free. This kind of stuff just never even comes to mind. I don't know if it's good or bad or what. I want to help where I can but a lot of these types of things just don't even occur to me. What are your guys' thoughts on this?

Check out @kortheo's journal and how he's trying to bring more awareness to ways he can contribute and help out more, or as he said "be less selfish." It's a muscle like anything else, so if you want to build it, bringing more awareness to it is one of the first steps.

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What concerns me more is that I heard one of the guys who was supposed to be on vacation for a week and a half worked all weekend, and another guy came in and worked another day for free. This kind of stuff just never even comes to mind. I don't know if it's good or bad or what. I want to help where I can but a lot of these types of things just don't even occur to me. What are your guys' thoughts on this?

Check out @kortheo's journal and how he's trying to bring more awareness to ways he can contribute and help out more, or as he said "be less selfish." It's a muscle like anything else, so if you want to build it, bringing more awareness to it is one of the first steps.

Thanks Cam! I'm not really sure that I'm concerned that I'm too selfish or something like that. Different people have different values regarding selflessness and I think that's OK. I believe it's important to not get caught in the trap of saying things like "That person is so nice/generous/whatever, I wish I could be like them!" and then going out of your to try to do that. If you don't believe in the core of your being that being less selfish or whatever is really important to you, I think trying to become that will be very obvious and some people will probably be able to see right through it.

I think the best way to go about this is to engage in personal development, and the positive things that ARE important to you will naturally come out and develop themselves as you engage in the process. That, I believe, is the best way of becoming the best possible version of yourself.

---

OK, so my post for today:

After work I spent most of the evening at my aunt's home, which was very nice and relaxing. The mood was much better than yesterday, that's for sure. I am confident that our family will be able to move on past our loss quite quickly.

I watched Cam's video on what to do during the summer and I found the message quite powerful. The two main pieces that stood out to me were the ideas of viewing your time as something to invest as opposed to kill, as well as the fact that if you really want to change and you want something better for yourself, you've got to be the one to do it. Nobody is going to change your life for you. Where you are isn't because of fate or whatever, but it the culmination of every single choice you have made in your life. So from this day forward, strive to make the choices that will move you towards where you want to be.

Changing For Good was also quite good reading. The idea of monitoring the antecedents (preceding thoughts and feelings) as well as consequences of engaging in your problem behaviour was discussed and it really reinforced the importance of monitoring your progress. If you write everything down and time stamp it, you can get a really good idea of how things are going and track your progress well. With respect to your problem behaviours, you can also get a sense of what triggers you as well and what your thoughts and feelings are leading up to engaging in your behaviour as well as immediately after.

On the positivity blog, Henrik talks about breaking our of procrastination and his advice is honestly excellent. If you see a huge daunting task in front of you, just tell yourself you'll work on it for a few minutes and then you'll be done. Often what ends up happening is that you'll start spending even more time as you gain momentum from doing that task that not so long ago you didn't even want to start. I feel that way with myself - it takes a lot to get me going, but I usually end up doing a whole lot more than I expected and most of the time I'll even enjoy it as well. That's really part of the point with these weekly commitments - just to build that momentum.

I wasn't sure what to do for consciousness raising of my eating problem so I just checked out the recommended daily calorie intake as well as recommendations for healthy eating. It wasn't stuff I didn't really know but I took some notes anyways.

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