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90 day detox


ChewyChickenBones
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Day 1,

I have the PS4 in front of me and I want to play Overwatch.

Decide to come here instead>post>put game away.

I'm going to overcome this. Damn this is a real challenge.
One day at a time.
I hate my life.

I'm a 30 year old man who has spent the least 15 years playing A LOT of games.

I made a lot of bad choices. I listened to the wrong people, followed the wrong advice, I never allowed myself my own choice. My own decision.

The last five years have taken major health toll on my body. My hands and wrist ached more, my eyes hurt, and my knees hurt a lot.

Just ignored all these things and kept playing. I work enough to provide me what I need to get my gaming going. Nothing else matters.

These past few days I have really been wondering one thing. What is my purpose?
Surely if I wanted to be a streamer I would have done it already. I have tried... but I have not tried my best.

I just play... and I can be incredibly good too... but I do not make money off it. So what the fuck am I doing.

 

I never took the time to look myself in the mirror. I have always seen the avatars I play. They were the biggest part of my life.  I ate, slept, and worked because I had too.
A day after my 30th birthday.. I finally allowed myself to think on my own.

What the fuck. I am living under my woman's parents home. That's fucking low. I would've rather be a neckbeard living with roomates.. but under her families home. I wasn't even pleasant because all I wanted to do was play. Fuck responsibilities.

 

A lot of my recent memories revolve around the games I played and a job I don't want. That's not the life I want.

I have taken many steps to get my life in order. Since my 30th, I moved us into our apartment. I got a stable job back (which I FUCKING HATE!), and now I am taclking the hardest task ever.

GIVING UP GAMES. OMFG. FUCK.

My life was games. Half of my last 15 living years have been games.

I really don't know what to expect. I'm surely aiming for productivity, and happiness.

Edited by ChewyChickenBones
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You took the first step and that is amazing.

Comfort can be much worse than outright tragedy.

Reaching the lowest point can actually be an enlightening experience and a pretty straightforward starting point to turn your life around. The majority of people with issues are not begging in the streets, by far, right? They are instead getting by each day with jobs the don't want, stuck in situations they hate, day after day after day. Suddenly you wake up one morning and oh crap, I'm 30 now. You could take a victim role and think "Oh man I'm so fucking old I mean look at this mess of life I have", and it would be a "natural", spontaneous human reaction. Some part of your mind is probably thinking that. But the main part of your mind did the right work, you decided to stop and actually think about where you are, where do you really want to be and what can you do to reach it. And that is also amazing. Don't stop doing it man. Being mindful about your current situation is half the battle. Being intentional about the actions you take and go at them at full steam is the other half. 

What actions can you take, from your starting point, right now, to begin to bring change to this situation in which you are?

From experience I can tell you, the first two things you should start doing right now are, in this order, getting rid or raise a physical barrier between you and games (so you don't just have the PS4 in front of you anymore like it's a perfectly valid option) and think of activities to fill the space videogames are currently taking up in your life, either professionally-oriented, leisure-oriented, or ideally both.

I welcome you to the community and wish you strength. You can do anything!

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@ChewyChickenBones Great username! I'm still early on in the challenge, but I'm finding the forum a great place to escape to whenever I may be craving to play. The support here is wonderful and it makes you realise you're not alone in wanting to change your life for the better. We can get through this.

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Sounds like you're going for the gusto reading your first post. Sounds like a good attitude to have!

Anyways, can't wait to see your progress as the weeks roll by. I've (really) started out on this journey recently as well.

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Thanks everyone.

Day 2.

I completed day one! I feel better. Almost caved in a few times last night.
Also went on a no fap detox. Been off work, so that helps. Feeling a little anxious about going to work tomorrow, but I will pull through.

I am still interested on other things. I finally had the time to finish watching Fantastic Beasts. I love the HP universe but I missed out on this because I kept playing.
Being hard on myself because I want to hop out and do everything different already. This is a part of my life I am taking control of now, so I'm doing other activities that interest me. Writing out my thoughts on the movie was a fun thing to do. Came here to follow up, don't want to cave in and game lol.

I still have a lot of anxiety. Kinda get lost in thought. I know it'll improve. I'm no longer investing time in addiction.
Games still interest me, I just got to obsessed, lost control and got hooked.

I feel like being away from real life so long affected my social skills a lot. I have two personas, quiet player online, or the helpful guy because it's his job. I am not either one of those. I just don't know how to be myself in any situation.
Now that I am off games and think about personality.. I get to see that my writing is a reflection of the person I became. I don't write well anymore.. and I talk the way I type. It's all over the place.
I'm facing people tomorrow. I work in a place where I talk to large amount of strangers. Let's see how I handle it now that I am not thinking about games.
 

Another reason I am changing is because I got sick.
I was so hooked that I got myself sick. The little time I spent off learning to take care of myself; I saw an improvement in my life.
Day 2 is almost done. I had a really close urge and saw a learning app neatly combined with a game. A simple game... still a game. Temptations.

Ah, here's one thing I saw an immediate improvement. I have not said my thoughts outlout. It is/was a bad habit and I was feeling helpless doing this. Made my anti social self much more outta place. Whenever I was not playing my emotions went outta control!I would think out loud, or throw tantrums, I was not able to stay still, fidgety, shaky, nervous. I have not done that today. I still am aiming for this to be a nice long needed gaming detox. Maybe I could pursue my streaming ambition if I learn self control?

IDK, but I feel incredibly better not having my emotions outta control.

Being able to express my emotions by writing helps a lot. Before I was able to either talk a lot or type a lot. I had an outlet instead of keeping it bottled in; and mixed up with a lot of pent up emotions.

Now that I think about it I did began doing this once I stopped writing or socializing and just played games. Online I started on mic being vulgar and competitive...then quiet with occasional vulgar outbursts. Day 2 almost done. It's been great to think clearly, checked out a lot of interesting, positive activities. Happy to have done something else than play for hours.

Edited by ChewyChickenBones
I want to write more - again
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Day 3

I am feeling very nervous. I just wanted to game to let all that uncomfortable feeling go away.

There's a crazy neighbor I have. Don't really want to talk to them. When I get anxious, it's a trigger for me to want to game.
Heading to work in 1 hour. Still nervous about being out with people. I want to hermit up. So far giving up games has not been the hardest part, but actually getting away from the apartment and socialize is what makes me anxious. Anxiety, shaky, fear, insecure, sad, yet happy that I am pushing myself to get out there. A lot of bad experiences have happened before.. but I chose to have a lot of great experiences with my new future. It's not easy. I wish it could set life up as quick as gaming. This is new ground.

Been hooked on my world for so long. This is all new. Man I feel nervous.

0311PM - Almost halfway through the day. Work has gone well so far. Been reading other journals, it's good to see we're all making progress.
Not being hooked on a game feels incredible.  I'm going to keep reading Respawn; print out important things so I have post it up.
Feeling overwhelmed, these are all new things. Gives me a headache.  Still afraid of a lot of things.

 

0356PM - Printed out several of the worksheets. Writing on them, highlighting things I still need to do.
I don't find anything any common interests on meeting people yet. At least my job is very social. I'm forced to talk to new people everyday, I think I'll aim for a new friend a week. I usually don't make friends, just talk enough to do my job.

 

0547PM - Made a new friend. Most of the conversation was about work but I was able to ask a few more things like where they are from, and if they speak another language. I still have a hard time socializing with people but hey it's a start. I'll keep making friends. There's a lot of people I can meet.


I also keep going back to think... all the hours I spent playing Halo, Phantom Dust, Halo 2, Halo 3, Modern Warfare, AwesomeNauts, Hearthstone and Overwatch. It was just way easier to escape into these games.
Feeling uncomfotable. I am thankful for this forum and support group, helps me stay determined. No more gaming.

1040PM - The day is almost done. Proud that I had another day free of games.

Stressed out but I'm not gaming!

Edited by ChewyChickenBones
Writing more
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Being anxious is not a funny thing. I know how it feels. The thing is, gaming numbs your anxiety because it helps you to escape the harsh reality. That's were the  uncomfortable feeling comes from.  You're dealing with emotions/feelings that have been dormant for so long, and gaming was the only way to escape them. There's this one qoute that helps me when I'm anxious:

If you are depressed you are living in the past. 
If you are anxious you are living in the future. 
If you are at peace you are living in the present.

             - Lao Tzu

Also, if you're having trouble with some anxious thoughts, I recommend you to try out meditation  ( there's an great app called Headspace).

tg1wovjiythy.thumb.jpg.d9941d2d757196b83Here's some motivational stuff ;) 

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Day 4.


This day has started off ROUGH. Argument with my girl, never good.
Signing us up for couples therapy.

 

I was still in a gaming chat. Told my friends I had to stop and left all game chats.
Tomorrow is a work day. I don't like dealing with angry people. It doesn't happen as often anymore.. but I get anxious. I've gotten really pissed of a few times. Screaming like a maniac, scared to let that punch go. I'm going to get another job. I'll hang tight for now.

I have some ideas while watching Cam's videos and reading respawn. I'm going out tomorrow, working on a video project. Checking out local places tomorrow.
Thinking of hitting up a Starbucks, coffee shop, library, some social place where I can work.

 

Getting a haircut.
Still feeling very upset about that argument with my girl. Man, shit got too intense.

 

0358AM - Sex would be amazing. Not risking it in this relationship.
I hate to up so early, but I'm getting a haircut in the morning.

1048AM - Ate a cheat day dinner last night. My stomach does not feel great, back to eating well.
Stuck at home because of this but I am making progress in real life.

 

1228PM - Heading to work early, it's a very social place. Going here by choice, a choice to step away from the house and work on my project.

0621PM - Today was a day full of new experiences. I work at an airport. That means A LOT of people. It felt great showing up early and not working immediately. Instead I took the time to get myself some food and got to know some friends better. I opened up about my 90 gaming detox, and talked about my experience with games.

When I was working a kid playing Yoshi's Island. Hearing those tunes again! My head turned immediately, I wanted to play!

Time to keep myself busy, time for dinner soon. I also am keeping myself busy by working on a project. What a day, so many new experiences. Incredible.

Edited by ChewyChickenBones
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Maybe I just missed it, but I am curious about what you're hoping to get out of the detox. The point of the detox is getting away from games (forever for some people), yet you're interested in streaming.  Is it just to get a clearer head so that you have a better relationship with games when you return, or do you mean streaming something not unrelated to games?

Comfort can be much worse than outright tragedy.

Especially when it sneaks up on you. It's like that parable about how frogs can only tell they're getting boiled if the water they're in changes temperature quickly, but they can't tell at all if the water starts tepid and gets hotter over time.

Edited by Parkreiner
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You're doing a great job journaling @ChewyChickenBones, keep it up!

The bad feelings and anxiety will pass. There's been times in my life where doing the right things instead of just being passive (even if I still didn't play) would make the perceived feelings worse and it would make me lose my shit completely, in anger and despair, so I know how hard it can be. Or it would feel like reacting to the world made everything in turn respond super violently towards me. More arguments, more incidents with people and things, etc. Everything of this, is just impressions. Same goes with that "passive-nice-helpful-repressed" persona you mention. It's not about suddenly snapping and "putting things (and people) in their place" here and now, if you catch my meaning. It's about learning to deal with your emotions, and the more you face them, the more you will learn to respond to them with action, and not just being passive, or aggressive. You're doing awesome at that, sharing your struggle and your moments of vulnerability, great job man.

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@Remigjus That's great quote.

@Parkreiner To get away from games and take care of myself.

@Hitaru

It's about learning to deal with your emotions, and the more you face them, the more you will learn to respond to them with action, and not just being passive, or aggressive.

That's really good advice, thanks!
 

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Day 5

Feeling groggy.

Parkreiner's post had me think a lot more about my detox goal. Games have been my identity for a long time. It's all I understood or cared about. Nothing else mattered. It took me a long time to respond. I thought things like "90 day detox then return with a clear mind and go all in as a streamer", and "detox then go back to games to see how it goes" but it didn't feel true. The real truth is that I am doing this detox to take care of my life. All that was done was just enough. Just enough to pay the bills. Just enough to place a roof under my head. Just enough to feel full. Just enough to make her happy. And the most important thing back then: Just enough to keep gaming. That is not my life.

Yesterday went very well at work and looking for another good day today. Heading out in a few to buy some groceries. I just want to stay home and be lazy. Oh man it would be great, but I'm keeping myself busy. A routine that does not involve getting my controller as soon as I wake up.

0139PM - Heading to work was an emotional rollercoaster. I was triggered because of my loud neighbor. I feel as if any negative thing is about me. I felt angry, sad, then depressed.

0758PM - There is a vagrant at work who owns a PS4 and PSVR. I've always wondered why he ended up living in the airport and playing games. Went up to him, gave him a sandwich and introduced myself. We just talked about our common interest; video games. It was just like talking to any friend about games. It's tough to see another human fall so deep into the same addiction. I wish him the best and hope to see him around at work. No longer as a vagrant, but a friend.

Edited by ChewyChickenBones
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The real truth is that I am doing this detox to take care of my life. All that was done was just enough. Just enough to pay the bills. Just enough to place a roof under my head. Just enough to feel full. Just enough to make her happy. And the most important thing back then: Just enough to keep gaming.

So "just enough" is starting to feel like it actually isn't enough for you? You feel that you want more and better?

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The real truth is that I am doing this detox to take care of my life. All that was done was just enough. Just enough to pay the bills. Just enough to place a roof under my head. Just enough to feel full. Just enough to make her happy. And the most important thing back then: Just enough to keep gaming.

So "just enough" is starting to feel like it actually isn't enough for you? You feel that you want more and better?

I know that I can do better. I had to escape my virtual world to get my life in order.

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Day 6

Woke up feeling a lot of anger. I was thinking of bad situations and how I could "put them in their place." Whenever I felt this way, I would play video games. Now I turn my focus to mindfulness. Just let the emotions be instead of suppressing or numbing. The apartment was a freaking mess! Played Moonlight Sonata on a loop and got to work on the place. Big difference by the time I was done. There were also two big piles of dirty laundry I had intended to take care of weeks ago... but of course I was playing games instead. As I was driving I kept thinking of reasons why I should turn back home instead but I refused. The laundromat has an arcade cabinet. It also has one of my favorite NeoGeo games... Metal Slug X! Oh... Just thinking about it is incredible. Well aware of this temptation I had prepared and brought my Respawn worksheets to work on while I waited. Looking at my answers, and adjusting some things. I completely forgot about the arcade cabinet. There were 30 minutes left for the dryers; there's a Japanese restaurant nearby. Made up my mind that I wanted some miso soup. Normally taking action and going to any social place would make me freeze up. I walked in a little nervous, but I enjoyed my meal. I actually went to a new location by myself and it went well!
 

The itch to play has increased. Getting outta the house and doing something helps out.

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Day 8

I dreamed I was playing Assassins Creed 4 black flag. I was killing everything around me and having a real good time. Man those were killer combos!

Taking my girls parents out to eat today. Coming back later to finish cleaning the house.

 

I'm grateful for:

For being alive, able to walk, breathe, see, and listen.

 

I'm still surrounded by a lot of game related things. I just remember one thing. Time is finite. These past few days I've done a lot of new experiences.

Edited by ChewyChickenBones
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Day 9

I have been out a lot more but even it's for a quick post, I will keep being consistent on writing my journal daily.  Being social is still something very new to me. Experienced both positive and negative results. Yesterday I was able to be kind to those who have been great with me and my girl. They really appreciated that we bought them some food. Still freeze up a little bit talking to others, specially when there are other people around. I keep thinking people will eavesdrop, criticize, and/or reject me. Today has I have been out doing some chores and it's been tough dealing with some shit attitudes. Makes me feel a lot of anger. I feel the rage burning in me. It's something I used to numb by gaming. Letting all these emotions be and learning from the experiences is not easy. I'm going to relax right not and look forward for the rest of the day.

I am grateful to be alive, walk, breathe, see, and listen.

Yoda.jpg

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Congratulations on day 9!! I think freezing up when talking to  others is a completely normal thing. It happens to all of us, so you shouldn't  think about it to much. No one's perfect. To be honest, people probably don't care that much wether you freeze up while talking or do some other weird thing. They might think about it in the momment, but at the end of the day they'll probably have more important things to think about :) 

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Day 10

Still feel as if anything negative or loud is related to me. It makes me very nervous, anxious and/or angry.  Mornings are rough somedays because of my loudmouth neighbor. A lot of negative energy comes off from that. Only positive is that if pushes me to get outta the house. Went to qigong practice. A very calm, serene ambience to ground myself.

 

I am grateful to live, walk, breathe, see, listen, eat and qigong. 

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Day 11

Finally got a haircut. Looking much younger. Getting used to the get up and get out routine. Will get a calendar tonight to be more proactive.

I am grateful to live, breathe, see, listen, talk, and to finally have my medical insurance back!

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Day 12
Getting some work done while I have Cam's videos on the background. Mornings are the time were I keep myself the busiest since it's when I have the most time alone. Worked on my car's maintenance, now I am doing my research to find a good PCP.
I am grateful for to be alive, my family, friends, to breathe, listen, see, talk, and my will to keep moving forward.

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Day 13

Getting better and this get up and do something routine. Went to check out some planners at Target. Didn't like any of them, I'll check some out online.
Set up a visit with a doctor. Finally! Getting ready for another work day, looking forward to it.
Been watching DragonBall as my resting/relaxing activity. It's a lot better than I remembered.

I am grateful for my family, friends, a job, my apartment, to breathe, listen, see, talk, and my will to use my time positively and productively.

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Been watching DragonBall as my resting/relaxing activity. It's a lot better than I remembered.

The first seasons are :). I did rewatch them out of nostalgia a few months ago. I really enjoyed it.

Congratulation on the two weeks man. Thats a great first step!

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Been watching DragonBall as my resting/relaxing activity. It's a lot better than I remembered.

The first seasons are :). I did rewatch them out of nostalgia a few months ago. I really enjoyed it.

Congratulation on the two weeks man. Thats a great first step!

Thanks WorkInProgress!

Day 14


Began the day by practicing qigong. It's a great way to begin the day with a 10 minute activity. There's a video on YouTube called 18 Chi Gong Shibashi. Left the house early with a plan mind, but it did not fall through. Was nearby a staple of my city, went to check it out and then went to a local museum. Got to check out some hidden gems, it was a good experience. Looking forward to a great day at work.
I ALMOST cracked. I LOVE OVERWATCH HALLOWEEN events! Then I remembered one thing. It's pointless. It'll serve me of no use in the future. Going for 90 days!

Edited by ChewyChickenBones
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