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My 90 days


jay

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Day 3 of 90

Hi guys. I'm on day 3 of my 90 day goal. I quit gaming a long time ago - my first attempt was in late 2015, and since then I've relapsed and quit and relapsed and quit, and have been mostly successfully in getting rid of gaming from my life. Where I fail, though, is media consumption. In hindsight, I can't remember a time after I quit gaming, when I wasn't watching youtube, netflix, or on social media, to escape and distract myself regularly. It's a problem because it's addictive, too. I consume my time with it exactly like gaming. I've made intentional efforts to stop this before, especially throughout this whole year I tried to make it intentional.

There's a lot I tried to stay away from it, a lot I tried to focus on building new habits (I succeeded many times as well - daily journaling for almost 180 days straight, meditation, reading, and generally developing more clarity of mind, my own critical thinking, through all this that has helped A LOT). But I haven't been able to sustain it, for whatever reason. Whenever even the slightest hint of stress from uni work came into sight, the only thing I knew to do was to envelope myself in distraction and escape immediately. I could write on and on about what I've discovered, what I've done, so far. But I don't want to make this a long post or get carried away.

I have my insights, conscious and subconscious, about myself, my habits, my beliefs, my roots. The only thing I want to focus on here isn't what's already done, but my 90 days and the direction after that for me. After many times starting and then failing to sustain in staying away from media consumption the way I wanted to (I'd end up watching days and days of content, only taking a break for external responsibilities), I was stuck on how to stop my latest fall into it and start fresh in a way that I would sustain it this time. I never give up, but I also didn't want to come out of it again only to fall back later again. I feel I've finally found a fairly solid plan to sustain it this time. Sustain my attempt at a life without addictive consumption.

I didn't intend on journaling here at first, but it's something I've never done and I feel I could use the community support. So I'm adding it to my small arsenal of tools that will help me structure my life (and my brain) over the next 90 days.

Before my 90 days are up I will have to make sure I come up with another solid goal like this one, so that I don't find my direction-less afterwards and break my momentum. Achieving my vision of my body I want is my main goal for the next 6 to 12 months. (It will continue to be my goal after that as well, but I feel it will become integral part of my life, and I can focus on another goal as my main goal.) Gym is part of my 90 days goal. Therefore my next goal after 90 days will include it as well. I'm writing this here as a reminder to myself.

I don't know what I want to write on here everyday, but I want to have this journal. I am making the commitment to write here daily for the next 87 days as I write this. I don't have a good track record with keeping my commitments, but I have a good feeling about my 90 days. And by that I mean I believe I will do it. And that's all the assurance I need right now, the commitment and the belief.

I will focus on not getting ahead of myself when I feel confident, and focus on my goals, the activities I've chosen to focus on in my 90 days.

I can't think of any specific time I want to set for writing this journal, yet I know I want to have a time for it to make it easier to be a daily habit. I'm going to write every morning, right after breakfast. I'll also only check in at that time.

Edited by jay
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Hi man, you seem to know exactly what you need. Purpose. 

I have had a similar journey, but i identified that all my addictions came from the necessity to release emotion that I didn't know how to process. Smoking, video games, porn, masturbation, movies. I used ll this as escapes and that was the addiction, not the action itself. So my work from then was to identify the moments where my feelings get affected by stress, shame, anger, disappointment, etc.. all those little moments in life that makes us miserable on a subconscious level, some examples:

"Going to sleep with the intention of waking up early, but then ignoring the alarm and getting late to work" (Disappointed of oneself, ashamed of oneself)

"Someone talking about irresponsibility, and you overhear them referring to you as an example" (Ashamed, Angry, Sad)

"Making a commitment to eat healthy, but the event at work made you depressed and now you are eating ice cream watching youtube fails" (Shame, Depression, Feeling weak, unworthy)

As I discovered all this small moments, I began to be aware of the tiny injuries they make on me, and eventually those injuries become so much, it might end very badly(almost ended badly for me). Identifying them is the first step, next is to let go of those feeling when they arrive, stand up, shake your body, make strange noises, breathe at increased speed, you know, shake the trauma. We cannot, of course, forget all the standard useful stuff we all should do, workout, learn something new, grow in any direction and work on your goals, in short, KEEP BUSY!

Wish you all the best.

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Day 4

Thanks for the reply @dahankus. I'm taking it one step at a time and focusing on myself.

In all the activities I chose across the four areas Cam talks about, journalling here is under the social category. I'm glad someone replied :)

I don't have much I want to write here, everything I know I want to do is in my head. I don't intend on writing long posts, I want to keep the focus and power in my head, not throw it out and lose focus. I say that from experience. I am building my power and ability to focus on what I want in my head, everyday, all day. 

 

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I’m in similar situation where I was consuming so much that I added media detox to my routine. 

Do it gradually don’t try to do all of at once cause you will burn yourself out trying to do it all.

trick I use is when I fast what distracted me or doing the most in that year and whatever it was that what I d fast.

i say just eliminate YouTube for awhile then start dwindling down others.

but don’t be surprised if I don’t respond because I’m in my own media detox which only allows me here on weekends. 

 

 

 

Edited by zeke365
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Day 5

Thanks @zeke365. I have tried to do media/tech detox before, and I did burn out rather easily because of the massive change. This time I think I knew subconsciously from past experience to not do that, like you said. I have blocked or limited access to a lot of websites, and I don't do addictive behaviour because of this, but I still have access to some that I can use but on a limited time each day.

Yesterday I had a pretty intense craving. I started thinking of all these ways to bypass my blocks I have set up (though I've made sure there's no way to do it), justifying everything and being convinced about it, and then I started realising that I was having a craving. Experience definitely helps realise this stuff.

Two things I have to look out for - cravings and the justifications of bypassing my blocks, and getting ahead of myself when I feel confident. I was guilty of trying to do both of these yesterday, and caught myself both times. Stick to what I have committed to and do my 90 days with that. Don't try to add more, that's for another commitment afterwards.

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Day 6

I had a big realisation about one of the main causes of my addictive behaviour yesterday. I have severe allergic reactions in my eyes, sometimes my breathing, and my skin. I have had allergies for years, but because my parents never understood the severity of it (and it's worse this year), I barely ever treated it properly. So I would go about my days in high school reacting to these things, and thinking it was normal ! I would stress my body out without consciously realising it, always thinking this was normal, and when I came home all I wanted was intense rest (not consciously, consciously I thought I was obligated to do my homework and be productive, but never got around to it unless there was a deadline coming up and my stress was directed towards it), and - an escape from the pain and stress. Subconsciously I would decide to escape, never realising consciously that I wasn't taking care of my body properly especially with my conditions. So escaping into gaming and later media became my only way of relieving myself from intense stress daily and feeling well. I would constantly be getting headaches on the daily as well. My habit of self care, of protecting myself from the stress, became being locked in my room staring at the computer screen until it was really late and I had to sleep. 

This year I have become more independent and noticed all these health problems more, and finally yesterday I came to accept that I have severe allergic problems that I need to reshape my reality to take care of myself better.

It was really tempting many times yesterday, when I was having these realisations and feeling afraid because of them (the severity of my condition, not knowing how much time and effort I was going to have to spend now daily and yearly on taking care of myself in ways I never thought I would have to spend time on so much, missing out on treating myself over the years and not knowing what works for me and what doesn't), to go on some media and escape from the stress I was feeling from the reactions yesterday (it's hayfever season, the worst) and the fear I was feeling. Especially because I couldn't leave my apartment due to my allergies.

But I was rational for the most part, and the blocks I have put certainly break the habit.

I also browsed through the forum a bit, it helps to read people's stories and know I can be better as well as long as I stay committed.

Again I have to be careful not to get ahead of myself, not to try to change more than I am already in my 90 days. That will not help me, sticking to my commitment is the way to do it.

Another thing I have to look out for is being in pain due to my allergies, recognising it, treating it, and resting and not being on the computer as a response to it.

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It is good that become mindful of your health and state.

I don't know about long termtreatments, ut to relive the allergic reactions in the short term I had to use anti-histamin tablets which worked great. I am sure a doctor can find other solutions as well which have not to much side-effects. I had pretty severe allergic asthma in my teen age days but am lucky that it kind of faded away with my maturity. Around 22 or so it was down to a little runny nose and itching eyes if I was out in at a special time.

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Day 7

I started taking antihistamine eye drops on Tuesday night. I'm visiting my gp tomorrow. Now on my time is going to go towards allergy-proofing my room, and just structuring more of my time and life around my allergies. Hopefully my gp can help me. This takes chunks of time away from what I really wanted to spend my summer/90 days on. This is disappointing, but I have to be patient and take care of my health. I'll still try to go to the gym when I can go out. Maybe once I am more prepared to protect myself from allergens I can get more into my summer plan again. For now it's all about allergy safety preparation and maintenance, trial and error. Yesterday I was very unprepared and hayfever season is already here.

I did spend a bit of time yesterday on YouTube and Facebook, but not too much. I don't want to unnecessarily leave the house right now so I allow myself some time on the media. I don't know what else I can do now that I can be less out of the house, let alone always be out of the house. I do want to cook more, so that's one thing. I recently had to spray a lot of insect killer in my kitchen to kill a lot of tiny insects that had built up in there, so my kitchen has been dormant. I'll clean up today and be able to use it again.

I guess even if my plans are stalled I'm happy that I finally know the main remaining cause of my addiction problem.

Edited by jay
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Day 7.5

I wanted to write some thoughts down here when I have them right now because I didn't want to forget later. I am breaking my initial process of only writing after breakfast every morning; is that bad or is it okay to prioritise breaking it to capture my thoughts which I think are important in this case?

I am generally bad with commitment, but today was for a whole different reason. Usually I break my commitment due to addictive behaviour and escapism...okay maybe today was not all that different. I woke up pretty subconsciously stressed because I had to start reshaping my reality from today to adjust to living with my allergies. I had so many ideas from last night for what I need to do to be better prepared, that I couldn't decide what I should do first. I was trying to rationalise which decision to make first. I eventually wanted to just decide on one thing and do that, instead of being stuck. But I was still feeling stressed and so didn't do anything. And in that, I was in my room, doing nothing and feeling stressed about what steps to take.

I felt myself accepting that I can give myself some time on laptop to relieve myself from the stress (I wasn't feeling this physically or consciously, mostly subconsciously and consciously only confusion when I tried to think of what to do), while maybe being better after a session on the laptop. So I browsed a bit of facebook, watched some youtube. More than I would usually have allowed myself in this commitment I made. Much more. 

Eventually I decided to vacuum my room, at 5 pm.

Today when I consumed media I was coming from a place of acceptance and wanting the relief so I could calm and think better about how to tackle my problem, not from a place of a subconscious urge making me desire it for simply escaping. I guess the reason to escape is still the same fundamentally? To avoid pain/stress/having to do something. Just this was a conscious acceptance to allow myself to do it.

I don't feel bad because before I got on the laptop, I did consider going out. In fact I was ready to go out, from habit in this commitment. I would've gone out for a walk, to the gym, anywhere. I would've felt good. But today the pollen forecast was high, so my allergies would've been bad, and I couldn't go out. That's why I didn't feel bad to go on the laptop - I couldn't do anything else to relieve myself from stress and think better. That was the only habit I knew how to - and the other positive habits of going out I couldn't do.

In hindsight, as I write this, I think I could have tried two different things that I have done before - meditate, and/or journal in my personal journal. I haven't done those two for some time, so I never thought of them when I was in the moment. I didn't want to be productive (like coding or editing video), so I would've never thought down that line. I only wanted to relieve some stress and decide on steps to take, and meditation and journalling would have been appropriate for that. This only came to me now.

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Day 8

Hi @thehondasc00py. I try my best to eat healthy - milk with weetbix in the morning, chicken pasta for lunch, baked beans eggs tuna bread with peanut butter and cheese for dinner. I'm trying to eat bananas every day now too. Avoid junk or fast food.

Edited by jay
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