Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Suritus

Matt's Journal

Recommended Posts

I'm working on potentially hosting an event for Game Quitters in Europe sometime soon. Keep you posted :D

Wow!!! If it's in summer I could see if I'd be able to get a flight to the meet! :ph34r:

Keep your eyes out. Details are still short but we're looking into it

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

9.4 

Yeah I know. It's been a while since I posted. To be fair, there wasn't much to talk about. I've been studying, watching movies, going to the gym, etc. I've also been feeling on the low side for the past few days and didn't have much motivation, but that's mostly over.

I've been hiking today with my friends, which was great! There are so many places that are close by and I'm glad I have people to visit those places with :)

I've also started reading the biography of Ben Franklin, which is super inspiring :D 600 pages to go, but they go fast!

On Monday I'm flying to Amsterdam to meet my friends. I'm really excited about it, though I feel like I have a lot of studying to catch up with after I get back. Library to the rescue!

Anyway, I think that's about it. Cam, really excited about the event! Hopefully I'll be able to make it, because of plane tickets and stuff. I'm hoping for June, since then I'm on the continent and can take a train! 

What I've learned: Work is entertainment. I feel better after a good day in the library.  Also, the key is getting to the library :D

Thanks for reading :) 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey bro. Just checking in. You good?

Haha, thanks Cam! :) Yeah, I just got out of the loop while I was there and it took me a while to get back. Also, exams panic. I'll try to be more diligent! 

22.4

It's been a while, but I'm still alive. My trip to Netherlands was great, although a little lazy, since I didn't do much of anything, although I used their library for reading and some programming, so it wasn't all wasted. Also, through being with my friends and meeting new people, I learned a lot about friendships, confidence and I dare to say, a few things about life :) It's going to take a lot of work, but I know where to go. 

Right now I spend my days in the library again, looking for flats, looking for work and obviously studying. it's been really warm in the past few days, so everyone is studying outside, which makes me happy. I can't wait for the summer, although it's going to be too warm back in Slovakia :D Last year's July was painful :D 

I've a couple of habits that I'm working on right now, mostly getting back into my morning rituals, which I've put on hold for a moment, and also pushing myself through discomfort and unpleasant tasks. It's slow going, but I feel like I'm on the right path. I need to perform well if I want to go to Amsterdam for my third year, and hang out with my old friends more often :)

What I've learned: Being comfortable with who you are is magical. Not being complacent, but knowing your worth. I've seen this in a friend of mine, who has really changed in the past few years, and it's inspirational. Be okay with who you are, and consistently try to do your best.

Thanks for reading :) Cam, thanks for the check-up. I follow you on Snapchat and some of the stuff you put out is also great inspiration! keep it up

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Haha dope! Snapchat is fun. Hope we get to hang in Amsterdam sometime, it's one of my favorite cities. Although Slovakia will be fun too! Glad you're well. :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

26.4 

I had my first exam today. It was the easiest one, so it wasn't much of an issue, but I have another one on Friday, which is gonna be harder :(  I have to say I don't feel very comfortable with it, but I'll study until then, and we'll see how it goes. In other news, I'm trying to help a friend back home who's dealing with some family issues, which can be quite tricky. Also, looking for flats is in full swing. We had a viewing on Monday, but didn't really like it. We have more for this and next week though, so hopefully something really good will pop up. 

What I've learned: Master the morning. It makes everything so much easier. 

Thanks for reading :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

1.5

It's the end of the week so I figured might as well post an update :)

Not much has happened, it's revision period after all. I had an exam on Friday, and it was better than I thought, so hopefully the person grading it will think along the same lines :D I'm studying for the next one, which is this Thursday. 
In my spare time, I'm looking for flats, reading and going to the gym. It's not very exciting, but that's because everyone is studying, and there isn't much going on in the university. Me and a couple of friends are organizing a dinner on Tuesday, which should be fun.

What I've learned: I rediscovered podcasts, especially hello internet, which I've been listening to lately. Other than that, a lot of stuff for my exams, but not much of that is relevant here :D 

Thanks for reading!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I still remember our call before your semester even began. You've been doing great man. Really proud of you.

Thanks Cam! Looking forward to your Europe meetup!

6.5 

Another check in. I had an exam yesterday and it went well. There was a section nobody enjoyed, so after the exam we shared a round of semi-serious bad mouthing :D At least it's done for the year. There was a girl who fainted in the exam hall, which I wasn't there to see, but I heard she's fine. Exams are serious business. 

We found a REALLY nice flat, and promptly applied, but the agency rejected us :( It's back to the agency websites, and time's slowly ticking, which isn't very helpful. At least we get some exercise walking around the city :D 

Other than that, not much news. I'm studying for my last exam, which is the hardest (Maths). I have two weeks, so it's fine :)

What I've learned: A lot of activities are rabbit holes - the more you do them, the more you want to do them. The obvious one is video games, but I found out it also works with programming, exercise, reading, learning about a topic and so on. This is both a blessing and a curse, depending on how one looks at it. Or maybe it's just my reptilian brain and habit loops :D

Thanks for reading :) 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

23.5

Another long pause, I know :D math kept me busy

so exams are over which means a lot of free time. I have a couple of things I want to accomplish during the summer, such as read books for next year's courses, do some online courses, move to a new flat, and perhaps find a job. I'm moving in a few weeks and really looking forward to it, since I'll be moving in with friends who are on the same wave as I am. I haven't actually seen the flat yet, but I heard good news about it, so I'm looking forward to be there. Also, I appreciate the change in location, since it gives me a new perspective.

I feel a little lost right now, since the days are so long :D I'm not yet sure how to spend my time, since personally I can only spend time in the gym, reading and programming for so many hours in a day. i'll have to brainstorm a bit.

What I've learned: I should've probably studied more for the math exam. There were some things I didn't expect to see and I don't think my performance was as good as I'd liked it to be :( 

Thanks for reading :) 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

8.6

I'm alive :D hope to be more active on the forum these days.

One of the reasons I didn't post much was because I was moving to a new flat. We didn't have internet until yesterday, so I had to go to the library whenever I needed something and GQ slipped off my mind. That's fixed now, so I'll try to remember more.

Another reason I didn't post was because I started to play games again. There was a number of reasons for this, unstructured time, peer pressure, some new games coming out and so on. I didn't feel full of guilt and shame after playing, as compared to the past, when I'd be really full of shame after a session, which I think is positive. On the other hand, it is too easy to use games as a fall back activity, when I'd rather do other things. These days, games leave me feel unfulfilled at the end of the day, with tasks left undone. I slipped into a 'tomorrow trap' - saying: "I'll start tomorrow, let me finish this match, game, etc."

I think I'm better than this, so I'm taking time off again, to get a better perspective. Between this and end of May, I've realized willpower erosion is a serious problem, and probably one of the biggest harms of games. My sleep schedule is rather off, my mind is foggy and I'm having hard time focusing on reading, which is something not worth sacrificing in favor of games.

But I don't want to make this post full of being sorry for myself, so I'll throw in a couple of things I learned in the past weeks too. Games brought me a lot of fun in those days, but that was mostly when I played with friends. Friends make everything better, and I think that there's something positive about playing with friends, in a reasonable manner. The hard thing is keeping it in the reasonable manner, as I think we all know :P

I've also learned that even though old habits are hard to break and can resurface, so can the good ones. It wasn't difficult to start meditating and journaling after I stopped, but my streak isn't very long yet, so I might be talking too early. 

I also learned that the feeling of satisfaction and happiness is directly proportional to the amount of effort one puts in. It's really like a bank - the more hard effort you put in, the better the payoff in the end. It's easy to forget this, especially when the payoff is merely a prevention of something bad (like staying in shape by eating healthy), or takes years to finish (such as completing an undergrad), but for short to mid-term goals, it's good to keep in mind that the effort pays off.

Finally, I experienced hedonistic adaptation and the decrease of joy I was getting from games over time. The first days were great, the next few, not so much. This can transfer into other areas, so if you don't find joy in something you've been doing for a while, try taking a break to reset your brain and derive more satisfaction from it in the long term. I used this with going to the gym, but I think this applies to most hobbies out there.

That's me for now. I hope you guys are doing well, perhaps finishing the school year for the younger of us, or just excited for summer in general (It's been REALLY nice out here for at least three weeks, strange :D) As always, thanks for reading! 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey guys!

Long time no see. I've talked to Cam last week and he encouraged me to try and post again, so here I am. Hopefully my experience will help you in some way. Here it is:

My Big Summer Relapse and how I crawled my way out of it.

 

The end of exams was a critical time last year. I worked for my grades, and I ached for some time off, for a reward. I had no real plans for summer – A big mistake – only general directions, and I found myself with a lot of spare time. Also, Overwatch just came out. So I started playing, and had a blast for a couple weeks. Everyone was new, I had time and no obligations, things couldn't be better. I went to the gym, read a little, hanged out with my friends and played Overwatch for a couple hours every day throughout June. I didn't see a problem with it, since I was telling myself I got nothing better to do and I deserved it. I slipped into a routine where I went to bed late – 4 in the morning, after grinding a couple levels each day. I was making another mistake which was not structuring my time. I also stopped meditating, since the first thing I did after waking up was turning on the computer – mistake number 3


At the beginning of July I went back home to Slovakia and this is where shit hit the fan. Since I was living with my mom, I didn't have to shop for myself, didn't have to do the dishes as often or wash my clothes. The environment was not constructive to growth, and I'm not saying that as an excuse but as an observation, since the environment is a huge variable when it comes to success or relapse. So, with a much relaxed state of affairs and no library where I could go to learn, I started playing a LOT. It was warm outside so I hung out with my friends and then went home and played, as it gave me a sense of progress, which replaced the progress I got from the gym and my studies.

 

Needless to say, I felt like a child. I felt powerless and demotivated from the lack of exciting things to do in the summer, but I didn't really allow myself to feel those emotions. Instead, I escaped from them by, you guessed it, playing video games. The worst thing was, it wasn't even very rewarding anymore. I was in a negative spiral where playing games sapped my motivation to do anything else, and since I didn't do anything else, I played games, which sapped even more and round the circle we go. This is a scary and frustrating situation to be in, and I'm sure a lot of you can relate. I felt stuck and powerless in the cycle.

 

Thankfully, I had a couple of things going for me. One thing was my love for cycling, which I do every summer, since it's the only time I can really go for long bike rides. Every time I went on a bike ride I felt great and alive, and it helped to wean my brain off the dopamine rewards a little bit. Slovakia has a lot of cool places accessible by bike, and thankfully I also had friends to go with me, so we could go on longer trips.

 

Another thing I had going for me was a former classmate I was attracted to. She was very responsive to my advances and we quickly went out for a couple of dates. This forced me to step up my game and take care of myself. Also, being out on a date means not being in front of a screen. If could go back in time, I'd ask her out sooner, but it's easy to say that in hindsight haha.

 

As August came, I grew progressively more fed up with my relapse and really started my crawl back. On August 1st I decided to start a programming project, so that I had SOMETHING to look back to at the end of the summer, as well as something to work towards. This project, my friends, my bike and this girl were what ultimately helped me break the spell of games, because I was biking in the morning, coding around midday and out with someone in the afternoon. The project was a great idea, because I was learning, I had goals to work towards, and I was rewarded in increased mastery and working code.

 

That's how August came to pass. At the end of it, I was ready to quit again, determined to make this year the best I've ever had. So I left for uni once again, met a lot of new people, uninstalled games and started meditating and reading again. As things are right now, I'm not 100% game-free, but I'm learning daily, and I feel much more capable than I did a month ago. I also don't have as much free time to play, which definitely helps.

 

(TL;DR) If I had to choose a few things to highlight, I'd say it's really important to be in the right environment. This can be hard to change, but I think it's something to be aware of and work towards improvement.

Another thing to keep in mind is the importance of structuring your time. When you have nothing better to do, it's easy to start playing, and it can be a downward spiral which can feel impossible to break.

One last thing is that it's easier to prevent than to cure. It's easy to fight your urges to play when you're on a bike 2 hours from your computer. It's also easy to not think about games when you're out with someone that you like and that likes you.

 

Those three factors – different environment, structuring my time and having a blast with people I like – helped me stop the relapse. Hopefully this post helps you to appreciate them and perhaps make some changes in your life. Good luck, and thanks for reading :)  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...