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Fern

Fern's Journal

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Day #1

Today was hard, but the important part is that it's the end of the day and tomorrow is still going to be Day #2. No slips, made it through the urges. That process involved starting with the Respawn vids, going to my first CGAA meeting, and going outside to sit under a tree and just try to exist through it twice, but I made it. I'm actively working on filling in the gap this will leave so I don't just slip back into the empty space and start gaming again like I have in the past. It's a bit scary though, realizing that I essentially gave the last 6~ years of my life to gaming, that I'm so unsure of who I am and what I even like or want to do, that just the concept of going out and interacting with people is a lot for me. I'm pushing through that and trying things, acting on the loose ideas and concepts I have of what I enjoy to begin figuring out who I want to be. 

 

I'm finishing today's journal with thankfulness that I made it through, and with a positive thought that if I made it through the day with the help of these communities and new things in my life, that I can make it through tomorrow. 

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Hey Fern, BigPete here, being scared is normal, take it from these guys before you, quitting games gave them more freedom to express themselves, learn who they are, and lead happy successful lives.

The key to this is consistency, like Cam says in his videos, the more you keep doing it the better you will see your life improve. Good luck and welcome.

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Welcome! It's perfectly fine to feel lost, we're all just doing things that seem right at the moment and hope it works out. Really, the only thing that doesn't change is change. You're going through a positive process and that's all that matters, I feel. GLHF! 

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Thanks everyone for the support :)

@Mettermrck It's an online group mostly, but I think some in-person meetings are popping up. I like it so far and think it'll be a good part of my recovery journey. 

Day #3

I didn't get a chance to post yesterday since I was busy, but made it through another day. Thinking through to where gaming actually takes me instead of just getting caught on that enticing glittery bit at the start seems to be really effective for me with fighting urges. It probably helps that I've utterly f***ed my life before via gaming, so for me the end of that path is pretty scary looking and unappealing. All in all yesterday was good, but last night was rough. I was really tired and could have used some good quality sleep but the new neighbors were slamming around from 11pm-2am so I got woken up repeatedly. In the past I might have gamed or just had a 'blah' day from first thing in the morning when in a tired/weak-willpowered state, but instead this time I woke up and actively realized that I am tired and because of that I need to stay on top of myself today to make sure I'm sticking to healthy things and good habits. So far I've been listening to and adding songs to my 'Strong' playlist that I listen to every morning to get me in a good mindset for the day, made a healthy breakfast instead of just cereal, and am now posting this to make sure my brain is on the track I want it to be for the day. 

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I like the idea of a positive motivating song playlist. I have songs I like to play after the gym when I'm feeling pumped up. What type of music do you listen to on your Strong playlist?

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Day #4

Had a positive (but a bit tiring) day. Got rid of all the consoles and games in the house. Also confirmed the process of my only non-fully-deleted online game account being fully deleted when the ticket response came back today. Decided to walk home from the game store after selling my consoles and games there, it turned out to be a way longer walk than I thought, but today was an exercise day for me anyways so I just got it done that way. Feeling a bit drained from the long walk and being in a game store while the clerk figured out an estimate and we haggled, etc, but also accomplished and relieved that it's all done. Also had a good surprise towards the end of today as my new workout pants that I needed for my martial arts class got here in the mail today. A bit bittersweet since now that they're for sure here on time I don't have any excuse not to go on Friday, but that's probably a good thing since I really need to start facing my social anxiety. 

Overall I'm just realizing how much effort it is for me to get used to including all these healthy normal things in my life and not just sit in front of a computer all day, but I know that even though right now feels rough the road ahead is actually much smoother without gaming in the long run. It's just an adjustment period. I'm a bit lucky/unlucky in that my life has had a lot of upheaval, so I'm used to changes and know I'll adapt quickly. I'm already enjoying the changes, just need my brainpower and body to catch up. 

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@Mettermrck It's a mix of genres, just a bunch of songs about getting through tough things, rising above, powering through, that sort of theme. I use music to work out as well which is what gave me the idea for a self-control pump-up list to keep me on task and focused on good things :) 

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Day #5 

Still on track. Had some good but stressful news about my partners career, happy for them but it also means a lot of change (which is what makes it stressful). Just trying to think that even though it's a bit frustrating to have something come up like this that throws my own plans off, it is a positive thing in the long term and I'm used to a lot of change so I know I can handle it. I find that when I feel stress like this there is temptation to escape that stress, but I'm doing healthy stress management like breathing techniques and posting here instead. It's just really fresh right now, after a night of good sleep I'll feel better in the morning. 

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I always feel good after a night's sleep. The hardest part for me lately was actually falling asleep. I've been using breathing meditation when I get into bed to keep my mind clear to fall asleep. It's been helping....

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The VA knows some better techniques to better relieve stress and it's called Chair Yoga made by Louise Mahoney.

1. Begin by sitting on the edge of your chair

2. Place your palms flat on your thighs

3.Inhale/Exhale a few times

You can try to attempt one of 7 stretches if they help:

Seated Mountain Pose-Place arms straight in air while Inhaling/Exhaling 3 times

Seated Side Stretch-Place arms together in air and bend from left, Inhale/Exhale, repeat on right, Inhale/Exhale

Shoulder Rolls and Stretch

Seated Cat/Cow- Inhale, Lift your chest and arch the back, Lower while Exhaling

Seated Forward Bend

Seated Spinal Twist

Seated Triangle Pose-Leg bent, extend arms to side and lean while Inhaling/Exhaling

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Day #6

Thanks for the tips guys, I was having some intrusive thoughts about gaming while I fell asleep last night because of the stress and used breathing and stretching/gradual muscle relaxation to get through it. Feeling a lot better today, mostly just nervous about my first Martial Arts class. I have social anxiety and this is one of my first times going out alone to a new social situation in a long while, but I hope it's still fun even with the nervousness. 

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Feeling a lot better today, mostly just nervous about my first Martial Arts class. I have social anxiety and this is one of my first times going out alone to a new social situation in a long while, but I hope it's still fun even with the nervousness. 

So, how did it go?

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Day #7

Had my first class yesterday and it went well :) I was really nervous and almost didn't go because of it, but told myself that if I put it off once I probably will just keep making excuses not to go. I'm glad I went. Even though I was awkward and anxious, there were some really nice people there who were welcoming. The physical activity was intense as I'm a bit out of shape but I managed to do the warm-up (clumsily, but I did it!) and also learn part of the first pattern. 

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Thanks everyone :) I do feel proud, but also nervous about going tomorrow all over again xD I'm sure with time and going repeatedly I'll get less nervous. There were a few other people there around my age (25) so I'm hoping that I click with at least one of them and maybe make a friend or two. Just need to get past the constant flow of 'everything you say sounds weird and awkward' that my social anxiety keeps going whenever I'm around new people. I think the exercise is really good for me, I slept really well over the weekend. 

Day #8

Yesterday was officially a week free of gaming. My anxiety is continuously going down, which is really nice, and my sleep and productivity are also better. I'm having some urges but still working to actively notice and mentally confront them so they don't sneak up on me. 

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Day #10 Had a rough day yesterday with a lot of feelings of isolation that brought on the urge to game to 'escape'. I went outside and meditated to work through it, as well as spoke to someone who's also part of a recovery community for support. I know that I'm only lonely because I'm just now starting to try and make friends and can't expect instant results, but since my partner and I decided to break it off a few days ago and I don't know anyone else here (moved a long distance to be with this person) I think the loneliness is magnified. I want to make things work here for myself and learn to be happy and confident on my own, it'll just take time. I have to keep in mind that right now this road seems rougher than the gaming road, but really long term it's a happier one with real satisfaction and achievements instead of false ones that don't give any lasting happiness. 

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Day #12

Yesterday was good, today was as well. I was mostly busy with work, e-mails, and errands. My ex (who I still live with) admitted that he's been gaming the last couple of days. It makes me really anxious and brings on urges to know that gaming is even happening in the house. I know I shouldn't be so reactive but just knowing that at night while I'm sleeping he's gaming makes me have the urge to game too, if that makes sense at all. Trying to stay strong by facing the urge, accepting it's there but mentally stating it's not going to happen, and then doing what my addiction doesn't want me to do by posting here and watching some GameQuitters vids and maybe reading something from the AA Big Book afterwards. It also helps to have this journal, there's a feeling of accountability and I want to keep on track for everyone else in the process of quitting too. 

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