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BigOlBeartic

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Hi everyone! It's my first day here. An intro to me:

So, the habit started in junior high, and soon grew into an addiction. I didn't have friends and I relied on gaming to get me through the day. My grades weren't great, so as I went into high school I tried to get my grades up. I somehow graduated with a great gpa and full scholarships, even though I gamed, was in clubs, and drew as a hobby. I then went into a pre-med program for college. My head was kind of in the clouds, b/c it wasn't something I really wanted to do , but I just figured I would go along with it. As I started getting into the coursework and aroud the med field, I realized I didn't like it, and instead of taking a proactive step, I got swallowed up by gaming. I got really depressed and into self-harm. Well, 2 years went by that way.

Many factors probably went into me feeling this way and relying on gaming, such as the fact that I was away from home, and external pressures to stay in a certain field of study. Anyway, I found the strength to start taking control of my life. I switched my major to something i like, started at a new university last year, and I'm doing by best to stop gaming. I got a part time job and also started volunteering and I'm joining a club soon. I'm finally also growing past my bad mentalities and gaining self confidence. I decided I would start to keep count of the days I go addiction free, and I wanted to join a community to help me along so here I am.

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Second day not gaming! Yesterday was the first. It feels great, my mind feels clearer,  I feel calmer and more focused. Happy I made this change.

I'm trying to quit all gaming, so that includes mobile gaming. Mobile gaming can be extremely tempting at times, especially during small waiting times when you're on a bus or waiting outside an office. This week I made the change on the 15 minute bus ride to volunteering. I reviewed course material instead of gaming, and felt a more positive mood afterwards.

Also did you guys know you can change your phone to black and white instead of color? Its easy, and accessible through settings. It helps if you are in this situation of trying to stop mobile gaming, as it makes the phone screen less stimulating. I first discovered it a week ago. Even if you're just trying to spend less time on your phone, this is a great way to help you do that.

Update: got home, played some badminton which was good. watched a movie after eating, lasted about 1.5Hours. I mean, nowhere near as bad as it would get if I started a game, but I feel terrible. I get an indescribable amount of self loathing whenever I let time pass by like that, which just makes it harder to dig myself out of the pit. I wish I had eaten, then worked on a drawing or done some coding. What makes it harder is since its Friday, theres an idea that its just down time. I mean thats true, but I need to get rid of the destructive habits that I've personally let develop over the years on days liek this. From tomorrow, I'm going to do my best not to repeat the same mistake.  I'm gonna try to just nap on my desk from now during that afternoon crash, then wake up and go about what I need to do.

Update 2: I don't want to go to bed with the 2H wasted. I know its friday but I just feel terrible that I wasted that time. I'm gonna be up 2 more hours, programming/studying to make up for it.

Edited by BigOlBeartic
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Welcome BigOlBeartic!

Thanks for sharing some of your story

I'm new here as well.  Sounds like you've made some good moves lately.  I admire that you're volunteering, it's something I'd like to get into more.  I've just began counting days as well, shooting for 90.  Hopefully we both can get there, one day at a time

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Sobriety:

3rd day completely clean. Feels fantastic. Today I packed up the TV in my room that I used for my ps4 setup, and went ahead and got it ready for selling online :]. Yesterday, I planned to stay up 2 extra hours. Staying up those extra two hours and doing some programming/homework really lifted my spirits. Inspired by @dwalk77, I'm planning to delete my steam account tomorrow. Working on this addiction has really given me some perspective on other bad habits, like watching TV too long, or obsessing over following media trends and trying to look perfect all the time. Having that perspective has helped me a lot, and its easier to pull myself out of some bad thought patterns about those habits.

Life:

Today my parents got back from overseas and we talked about what they did. I got farther on my personal programming project, and turned in some homework. Tomorrow I plan to pick my drawing hobby back up. Its been a few months :) I actually am very good at drawing. I think the addiction had also lowered my self-esteem a lot. I will now do my best to bring it back up. PIck up photography as a hobby.

New Goals for Tomorrow/This week:

1) Try to get all studying done in library. I'm more focused there and have less room for distractions.

2) I've noticed my mind adrift in between tasks, maybe its b/c i'm off gaming that I notice this more. And little bits of time add up to an hour to an hour and a half that slip through everyday. That is a LOT of time when I add it up all together. I'm going to try to stay more focused in between tasks and do my best to be aware of the time that I have, and make sure I use it to the fullest, even if I'm just doing something to enjoy, like taking a walk. That's better than just letting it slip by letting my mind wander back and forth through random thoughts like what-ifs.

Edited by BigOlBeartic
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On 19.1.2018 at 6:10 AM, BigOlBeartic said:

 I switched my major to something i like, started at a new university last year, and I'm doing by best to stop gaming. I got a part time job and also started volunteering and I'm joining a club soon. I'm finally also growing past my bad mentalities and gaining self confidence. I decided I would start to keep count of the days I go addiction free, and I wanted to join a community to help me along so here I am.

Welcome and great job at taking responsibility for your life. It easy to blame others or your environment. It took me personally a long time to make this step in my mind. We can't control our outcomes in life but we can sure as hell influence the propability of good or bad things happening to us. You are doing things to put weight on the right side of the scale and this is awesome. If you accept this and keep doing stuff to improve your life instead of self sabotating yourself, your self-esteem will raise almost as a side effect. You can be proud of yourself if deliver the best input you can give at any given moment. The output or the actual results of your actions may vary, but you can always be proud of your effort. 

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On 19.1.2018 at 6:14 PM, BigOlBeartic said:

Update .: I don't want to go to bed with the 2H wasted. I know its friday but I just feel terrible that I wasted that time. I'm gonna be up 2 more hours, programming/studying to make up for it.

Discipline is a good thing but don't push yourself to far. Some balance is important. THink of yourself as two persons. One is the rational thinking one who wants to achieve great things and break bad habits. THe other one is your primal identy who wants his needs met. He wants dopamin , oxytocin and other hormons which make him feel great. None of the two persons should dominate the other, because it doesn't work that way sustainable. If you rational self is wipping your primal self all the time in submission it will take over and you will break your commitements to yourself and hurt yourself. The best way to reach anything is in my experience to let them work together.

You need fulfill your primal needs in a constructive way (need dopamine? Cold showers/excercise can help, feeling alone? Phone with friends or family). Think about the ways gaming/watching tv helped you in the past and find positive ways to fill this void. Here is a video from cam about this subject :

Building new habits is a process which takes around around 66 days if what I have read and experienced is true. That's why you'll need a sustainable process at first and then you will slowly but inevatible progress in the areas you aim to progress in. One habit at a time. So don't beat yourself up if you don't become an awesome coder/artist/student/lover in 3 months. Aim for big goals in a timeframe of 5 years. In a timeframe of 3months stopping gaiming and forming new positive habits instead is a great goal for itself.

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@WorkInProgress Thank you so much for the feedback! I happened to be logged in looking back on my journal today. That second comment you made especially is very insightful for me. I definitely see what you're saying there and I will give an activity that helps me feel that growth/progress/dopamine priority from now.

I plan to start my old hobby at least for 10-15 minutes again tomorrow, i think that should definitely help fill that space. My programming hobby also helps fill that space nowadays, which is why I was so upset when watching movies. It doesn't give me that feeling of progress, which I may have gotten from gaming but I probably will from renewing a hobby or a new hobby.

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What are you programming? I have thought about picking up programming as a hobby to help me understand computers a bit better as I have pretty much dumped everything I learned in university about computer science. It's also a "clean" cheap hobby as well. I have no idea where to start.

I totally understand your productivity kick and feeling guilty - use this to your advantage but be careful to not let it go too far. For example, when I was doing the detox, I found that I was so hyper focused on productivity that I would get angry at anyone and everything that was not progressing to personal development or being productive, including family. That created some tension when I saw them on their phones or doing nothing or people at work were talking about TV or movies. If you feel like you need time for yourself or a break, rather than doing something unproductive like watching a movie etc, try having a nap or meditating or writing a journal entry - it's all an investment in your mind.

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58 minutes ago, giblets said:

I totally understand your productivity kick and feeling guilty - use this to your advantage but be careful to not let it go too far. For example, when I was doing the detox, I found that I was so hyper focused on productivity that I would get angry at anyone and everything that was not progressing to personal development or being productive, including family.

@gibletsI totally relate to that! I've tried a detox before and that happened. This previous detox was nowhere as serious as this one, and I didn't have such great support system as this forum and a few other websites I joined to help. I've noticed it happening a little but I'm aware of it this time and I am being sure to not lash out at them. Thanks a lot for pointing this out, its good to know that I'm not the only one who experienced this.

58 minutes ago, giblets said:

What are you programming? I have thought about picking up programming as a hobby to help me understand computers a bit better as I have pretty much dumped everything I learned in university about computer science. It's also a "clean" cheap hobby as well. I have no idea where to start.

I agree about programming, I think its a great, cheap hobby to have. Assuming you want to start fresh, I started at this online course. Its absolutely free and offered from Stanford, and starts assuming everyone is starting at a blank slate. Its a great starting place! I didn't know much about programming before this course. I will say that the initial first and second lecture may be a bit dull, but once you actually start on the first assignment it gets really fun.

Link to course: https://see.stanford.edu/Course/CS106A

 

Right now I'm programming something pretty simple, its GPA Calculator for your Academic Career. It does Course GPA, then writes all the course information to a file. Then it does Semester GPA, pulling all the course information from the previously written Course files, then storing semester info to a file. Then combines semesters from semester files to calculate academic gpa :) and all the files are there if you need to look back. Its really not intended for practical use, lol because there's a lot of apps that already do this better using GUIs. But its for me to practice the stuff I learned last semester and give me a better understanding of Java and programming in general. Next I plan to make 401k and compound interest calculator programs. And then after that, I plan to improve my programs with GUI's so maybe then they will be a bit more practical.

 

Edited by BigOlBeartic

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4th Day Clean! I don't have as much time tonight so here goes; I deleted my steam account today!!! I had between 800-900 hours on there! omg well... at least it's gone now. :D Big step forward, and feels a bit extreme throwing all those hours away but... at least I won't be sinking any more of my time into Steam. I deleted my steam account using this guide: https://www.reddit.com/r/StopGaming/comments/2t384s/how_to_get_rid_of_your_steam_account_in_60_mins/ =) I have to thank the members of this community for inspiring me to do this. I initially got the idea from @dwalk77's journal, so thank you!

Oh, and @WorkInProgressI took a cold shower today, and it did help a little. Think I will try to make this a habit :] It wasnt freezing, but colder than I was used to. I'll work down from there. Thanks so much for the advice!

General life stuff:

Today was a nice day, had a chill morning had the part-time job. I work with animals. I came home, went to the library and studied.

I'm getting myself out there and I'm going to an orientation for an honors society on Tuesday. :) I'm also joining one of my college's programming clubs. This meeting is tomorrow, on Monday. I started putting together a scrapbook today, thought it was a good way to practice photography as a hobby of sorts, which I remember wanting to do + wrote it down in yesterday's journal. Just have the first page in.

Yesterday's Goals: 

Met yesterday's goals of studying in the library, felt a nice productivity boost. I'm a really hungry person so I could only last 4 hours there :I But I continued studying once I got home. I also did better at my time management between tasks. I wanted to draw today, but I ended up working. If I really think about it, I would rather be programming than drawing just b/c it adds on to my resume b/c i'm in that field, and its fun. Idk when I'll draw. One thing at a time, I guess, I'll worry about this later.

New Goals:
This week, i plan to ship the TV off from my Ps4 setup. The next big step will be to put my ps4 up for sale on amazon, then eventually my nintendo 3ds. Should I give it away to a friend instead? Not sure which to do. There's' the possiblity I will get it back if I give it to a friend, but besides that, idk.

 

 

Edited by BigOlBeartic
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@J(e)RKomg, that's so awesome!! It's so cool knowing that my post has helped someone else in such a big way. :) Cheers!!

I have a bit less time today b/c I have a lot of reviewing to do and a lot of homework, here we go:

5th day clean, almost at a week. *some kind of dance* Still taking the cold showers. TV not sent off yet, just sitting there in its package, same with PS4, which is just sitting on the desk. I don't think I'll get time for a few days, but I plan to get it done this week.

Life:

I aced my public speech =) It was our first public speech for the semester and ungraded, but we were required to do it to get our feet wet. The progress I've made stopping video games and seeing everyone's story here has really boosted my confidence levels. I did also prepare for the speech beforehand :P Now to do well on the first graded speech, which will be next Friday. And I have the programming meeting tonight, looking forward to that!

Edited by BigOlBeartic
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Meeting went well, was very nervous to meet new people but I ended up joining one of the teams who are making a big program this semester :], OH and my Java Textbook Arrived I was so happy when I got home and saw it there :) Its a textbook about Swing, all I know at this point is that it has to do with building GUI's which is why i ordered it. According to wikipedia, swing is a " widget toolkit " for java. At this point I don't really know what that means to be perfectly honest, but i'm sure ill find out hah xD

New goals:

Review courses briefly each day!

Edited to add: Try to filter out distractions while studying. Study 50 minutes at a time w/o distractions and then take a little break.

Filter out distractions when getting ready in the morning, the few minutes saved influences my mindset for the entire day

 

Edited by BigOlBeartic
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6th day clean, tomorrow will officially be my first week clean :D I had a few minutes of temptation via visiting pokemonshowdown.com on my phone but it was for such short times (< 2mins) once a day at most. For me, that's fine b/c I did not give in to the temptation to keep gaming and I can still count these 6 days as meeting my gaming detox goal :] However, I'll make it to add that website to the blacklist in my brain that other games are on, because I can see it being a re-introduction point for me if I ever get too tempted.

Btw that dancing bear video is ridiculous and hilarious.

Lyfe

SO! I got a haircut today! My attempt to look more professional and I'm tired of getting my hair messed up by the wind, as vain as that sounds. The problem is the haircut is a fade so the hair on the sides of my head is a lot shorter than at the top. I haven't gotten a haircut in so long I forgot to specify I wanted 4" all over. and the bangs at a specific length. (My head is already long and the fact that my hair is longer on the top just makes my head look a little abnormal. Whenever I get a haircut after a long time it feels very strange b/c all of a sudden I feel like I'm almost a different person because I got so used to how my old hair looked. Anyone experience this? Anyway I'll get over it. :3 A litle over 1 year ago, if I ever got such a big hair change, I would go through extremes to not show my hair in public. I remember wearing hoodies and beanies and hats even when I was feeling uncomfortable. Well the new me is more confident. :] And I feel like I am perfectly capable of appreciating the fact that I look more professional and just waiting for a month or two for my hair to grow back, then asking for a cut thats more uniform.

More minor events are I went to the NSLS meeting today at my college that I was talking about in Sunday's journal. Met new poeople, made a new possible friend... so yea! xD

Also I ran into an obstacle in my program and I can't figure out how to solve it :I I'm trying to solve it without relying on the internet. If it takes too long, I'll reddit it though. Its not too complicated in that its not an abstract concept. Its just I can't think of a way to accomplish the problem. aNYAY, YEA.

 

goals

Met goals of semi cold shower, 50 min study sessions, productive morning period, library studying

new goals

review one class at least 15 minutes each day ( i heard a little review can help a lot w memory ) <--- also gonna be really hard... :I

dont visit pokemon showdown

Record myself summarizing my notes when I can! This way I can listen to them whenever I have the stamina to do so intead of wandering around w random thoughts.

Had a discussion with @MPieterse about time spent scheduling, and so I think this new goal is a good one: minimize scheduling/forum roaming time. Everything has its time/place and sometimes I wander the forums too long.

 

ps : love this community :P

Edited by BigOlBeartic

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So this morning I want to talk about self identity bc yesterday night posting did make me feel better but I spent like 2 hours worrying about how I look w my hair. (Yea this is gonna be a long, maybe stupid post about how I got post haircut anxiety x_x) I felt like one of those models on antm who has a breakdown after a haircut, but a less severe version.

I feel really ashamed that I spent 2 whole hrs worrying about this dumb issue. But I just didn't feel like myself. Self image and social acceptance plays a bigger part of my life than I thought.But I got the haircut bc it would save time. And the time I spend styling my hair in the morning or making sure it didn't get too crazy throughout the day could now be spent focusing on something more productive. Being able to redirect my energy in that way is why I got the haircut. I just wanted to reaffirm that to myself this morning. Here I go, I will update later today on how I did today.

Edit: I also found this really interesting article about changing self-identity: https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/compassion-matters/201712/changing-your-sense-identity  

Edited by BigOlBeartic

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My first week!! :] Accomplished no games for 7 days :] oh yus.

Ok its been a long day and I am exhausted. But, I stayed true to my goals and once I left the house and started studying, my worries went away.
Feelign a bit like an outsider at a part time job full of caucasians + im kinda quiet + new haircut, maybe its all getting to me. I need a little relaxation tbh

Anyway, I figured out my coding obstacle I had yesterday :) That made me super cheerful ^-^ I will be studying all night tonight :)

Met goals of semi cold shower, 50 min study sessions, productive morning period, library studying, getting over this new haircut

New Goals keep it up, everything is going perfectly .

 

Edited by BigOlBeartic

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8th day clean. Not much to say today as im in a rush. So apparently my haircut looks weird to me cuz it doesnt match my face shape lol. I never really took those guides seriously. I took a look at a subreddit today about to find this out. Welp, im probably gonna grow my hair out and then ask for the same hair length on the sides and top (oblong face shape).

Lol umm.. well besides that other funny stuff happened but idk if It would be appropriate to share here.

Met goals of semi cold shower, 50 min study sessions, productive morning period, library studying, used to haircut

New Goals sleep on time, by 11 pm

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Lifehack: wear caps and never worry about your hair again, and look gangsta af while doing it

And if you feel like sharing it, it's probably appropriate to share. Hell, if you DONT feel like sharing it, it's probably more appropriate to share. something something honesty and vulnerability and all that good stuff ;)

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