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info-gatherer

i-g Post-Detox Journal

38 posts in this topic

Posted (edited)

Current habit: quitting tobacco. / Start date: Thursday 5 April 2018

(this post is constantly updated)

Edited by info-gatherer

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So, welcome everyone! In this new journal I will continue my journey with the GQ community. If you don’t know me and you are interested in my detox journal, you can find it in my signature (doesn’t work on mobile).

Some data about today, 30th of April 2018:

-Today is day 99 of gaming abstinence;

-Day 25 since I quit smoking cigarettes (I vape though);

-Day 0 of everything else.

This is the format I thought about for the new journal:

-Checking in: I’ll make sure to write every day, even a small sentence, for the sake of continuity. Most times I’ll describe my day, what I did and what I thought.

-Habit building: every 21 days I will pick up a small beneficial habit to develop. I’ll update the first post of this thread to reflect progress. Three weeks are a reasonable amount of time to develop small habits [Big improvements exception: for bigger ones I’ll make it 90 days].

-Goals: sidequests, if any

-Memories: I’ll sometimes share one memory from my past. Recollecting in tranquillity as a way to understand who I am. I’ll elaborate on it more or less (or not at all) depending on how much time or energy I will have in the moment.

My experience here taught me that journaling is a powerful tool for improving one’s life. That’s why I’m excited to start over and keep walking this path.

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Posted (edited)

Day 0

Right now I’m sitting in a chair next to a football ground. I was driving by and I had the idea of pulling off, pausing my life for a moment. I used to play here when I was a child, three times a week. Haven’t been inside since then. 3 weeks without smoking allow me to sense the smell of grass, and the smell brings back memories. There are children playing, same age of my past self... it’s weird, I don’t know why I’m here...

Goal for the next 21 days will be a very basic one, but I haven’t decided yet. I thought about always getting my clothes ready every night for the next day, but it looks too easy, and making my bed after waking up in the morning, but it looks useless. Also thought about not looking at the phone before getting washed and dressed, but I already try to do that, although not systematically. Need to find something, something that can make a difference, even small.

Edit: Running 10-30 minutes every morning? This sounds beautiful, but very problematic. I’d need to wake up very early (before 7.30, or it would be too hot), and uni city is terrible for running (ancient streets, many ups and downs...). I’ll probably save this one for august.

Edited by info-gatherer
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@info-gatherer,

What an incredible start to a new journal.  I really like the topics you'll be covering too, especially the 'memories'.  Looking forward to reading your adventures.

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Posted (edited)

Day 25

When you are lost, you go back to what you know. My first habit to build will be quitting tobacco, because it is very important for me and I know I will focus on it. It will give me a sense of progress. I didn’t like the idea of a smoking journal because 1 I didn’t think I could ever go back to real cigarettes 2 I didn’t quit completely, I vape. But in the last week I had multiple cravings, and the last was today, and for a very basic reason: I can’t get my vape to work properly. I always fail doing something, like regenerating the coil, wicking it, or something else, and I spend long periods of time without getting my nicotine fix, and in those moments I really wish I could smoke a cigarette. I went so far as to try and drop some e-liquid (just a couple drops) on my skin to absorb nicotine. And nicotine in contact with skin is fatal. A tea spoon of it (pure nicotine) can kill an adult by skin contact (it stops your lungs and you die suffocating). So, guess it’s important that I focus on this if I don’t want to die. I will not smoke a cigarette for 90 days. Then I’ll try quitting nicotine altogether.

You may ask: info, you big dumbo, why don’t you just quit smoking now and throw your vape in the rubbish? But again, the reason is very simple. I’ll be honest and say that I’m enjoying vaping a lot. It’s not just the nicotine. I like learning about it, building the coils, fixing atomizers that don’t work, try the million of different flavours, spend tons of money to buy new gear... I just want to enjoy this thing for a while before trying to quit, it’s my reward for quitting tobacco. It will disappear in due time just like all my obsessions (the interest will disappear with time, not the addiction: I’ll quit when it happens).

Also, I never mentioned that I was diagnosed with OCD a couple years ago. I never mentioned it because I don’t care much about therapists’ opinions about my own life, I don’t trust them too much. I mean, yes, you’re right, I suffer from a disorder, so what? I can’t pay you other 5k euros to try to fix the broken thing I am, so I guess I need to deal with it. I’d like to go to therapy again but it’s too much money and the guilt of asking that much money to my parents, even if they are rich (they did pay for it and would probably pay again) is too bad to deal with. Maybe one day I will have a job and pay for my therapy, but I doubt it. It’s just too expensive for what it gives me, and I will definitely be much poorer than my parents if my imaginary plan of becoming a professor in university fails (and I would be poorer then them anyway). MAYBE I CAN ENROLL TO THE UNIVERSITY THERAPY SERVICE. THAT’S FREE. YES I SHOULD. I need to do it.

Goal: write to the university therapist.

So Pierce, JustTom and the nice nordic guy with the name I can’t remember for how much I try, I should have listened to you and started a smoking journal after all. Because the first 90 days will be about not smoking :)

I already wrote a lot so I will be brief and summarize what I did today: went to the post office and sent the documents for my erasmus in Paris. Fixed my bike. I didn’t bike for YEARS and it felt good having the wind on my face. After dinner I played paddle again with my family but it was not that funny, there was my cousin too, and 5 people for a 4-players game are one too much. We had to switch a player every 10 minutes. There was no real competition, and I don’t like games without competition.

Tomorrow I’ll have lunch to my granny’s. Me, her and my sister. And tomorrow I will study because I can’t spend all my time as if my future was not on stake. Even if I have a good time instead of being closed in my room playing videogames. If anyone will have the courage to read this monstruosly long post, thank you

Edit: sorry Dani, no memories for today :/ post is already too long

 

Edited by info-gatherer
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Posted (edited)

1 hour ago, info-gatherer said:

And nicotine in contact with skin is fatal. A tea spoon of it (pure nicotine) can kill an adult by skin contact (it stops your lungs and you die suffocating)

Lol what the fuck are you serious? That's hardcore hahah. 

Regarding vaping though, I stumbled upon this today - just read the title as I'm not THAT interested in the topic and need to focus on other things, but it might be good news for you!

(woah, GQ embeds reddit posts. TIL)

 

Edited by JustTom
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23 minutes ago, JustTom said:

Lol what the fuck are you serious

From what I read, nicotine tolerance for the human body ranges from 0.5 to 1 mg/kg. This means that if your weight is 70kg, you need 35 to 70mg of nicotine to kill you, assuming you absorb all of it in a very short period of time. I don’t know the concentration of pure nicotine, but 100mg nicotine bases (the highest I found, and still nic is mixed with propylene glycol and vegetal glycerine) must be handled with protective gloves and near a window for fresh air (nic is volatile). Absorbing 0,5 ml of that base through skin contact is probably going to kill you or send you to the hospital at the very least. I was just joking about me dieing though, because I don’t use any liquids with more than 18mg/mg of nicotine and mainly use 9 or 4mgml (I used 90mg/ml twice, but in a safe way). It’s very very difficult to get intoxicated or dead with a 9mg liquid, you’d need to throw the whole 10ml bottle on your chest and stay immobile until you’ve absorbed all of it, and it’d take one or two hours. But I’m not a medic and my sources are not to be trusted too much, so take everything I said with a grain of salt :)

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Day 26

Woke up at 8, then went back to bed and didn’t wake up again until 11. I’m not used to it anymore and I felt sleepy the whole day. Went to my granny for lunch and decided to stay there for the whole afternoon. I studied a bit, read a hundred pages of a book. When I came back home I was very depressed. I don’t know if I’m just scared because I have this exam in a week and I barely started studying or it is something else. I feel apathic. There’s no brain fog, I’m not confused. It’s like I once again stared in the void, except I didn’t. I was doing everything right, but then this thing hit me out of the blue. I feel paralyzed. Feels like I’m losing all the progress I achieved with my detox. I just want to sit down somewhere and stay there and sleep the whole time. I want to go to the seaside and chill in the sun. I want to have a very basic job, work hard, stop this perpetual competition with my peers in university for a job I don’t even really want. It’s similar to the depression I had some years ago, but it’s also a different feeling. There’s no pain, no regret. I’d just like to spend all my time with my loved ones, do nothing, have no responsabilities, always being on holiday. And I’m probably making no sense. I didn’t miss this part of me.

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This is obviously really vulnerable time for your process and additional big changes - no matter how good they are - like quitting smoking, surely give their effect in tolerating all the feelings caused by the whole mess: the studies, quitting gaming and possible issues with your loved ones. I would be so glad if I could say that there is a simple cure to all that.. 

One thing that I did in a similar situation (even though it was REALLY SUPER TOUGH and even required me to move back to my parents to cope with the stressi&not having to concentrate in taking care of EVERYTHING myself) was to simply drop off my uni degree, reflect what I really want to do and get to work with that. I knew it's gonna be a hard road but I also knew that I am stuck in a really boring(yet profitable and good) University degree and I wanted to do something else. Not necessarily something easier but something fascinating. I decided to go for medicine studies even though my scores were the lowest possible ones from high school and I knew, when I started working for it in 2016, that I need to work harder than in my entire life so far. It's now May 2018 and I am still only in the process of getting the admission there - having the entrance exam in 2 weeks, but feeling confident and hopeful nevertheless.

Now, this was just a little fragment of my whole story but I just wanted to give you a hand, in case you happen to be a same kind of person like me, who is usually aspiring from the environment around me :)

This studying thing was just one thing but I'd consider navigating around that. Keep up the good work bro!

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@Dannigan thanks as usual for the kind words, and yeah, I still have to learn that it’s better to take a day off and then work harder than not being 100% and trying every day without success. But actually I had plenty of vacation lately, I feel good in the moment but the next day I’m back to where I was.

@JaniP I’m living that backwards. I made the fascinating choice. I graduated in humanities and now I am pursuing a master degree in modern literature. I used to be a brilliant student when I was younger, and I even managed to graduate with full honors in December without much effort overall, thanks to my very good background, even if I wasn’t studying anymore. But now I think I’m failing.

I chosed this path because I loved reading books, watching movies, studying philosphy and theory of literature and so on. My dream was becoming a writer one day. I never accounted for the possibility of failing. Anyway, a couple years later I understood that writing (atleast the kind of writing I like) is not a job, it’s not something you can live with, and now the best next thing is working hard, getting a phd and work in university. Which is not something easy to achieve, the competition is overwhelming. There’s people out there that deserve it much more than me, that would be more happy to make it, that have no doubts and are giving their best to it. I’m happy for them and sincerely wish them to succeed because they are great people. And anyway, I realized that even if I were to succeed, I wouldn’t be fulfilled.

There are days I think I should change my life, pursue another path... like becoming an engineer, a medic, or why not a cook or a peasant. My uncle graduated in Law and has been a simple warehouse manual worker all his life. There are days I feel I’d like to be like him. But there’s still this little hope inside of me that says I shouldn’t give up, that everything will be ok in the end, that this is just the price I have to pay. I don’t know, I can’t see the future... I don’t want to became a teacher in middle or high school, not because it’s a bad job (expecially in Finland, I hear!), but because that’s exactly what I didn’t want to become when I started, what I vowed I would not become. if I were to become like that I would feel a total loser, it would tear my hearth apart. I have been so privileged in my life that I can’t fail this hard. I just can’t. I suffered from gaming addiction, severe depression (three years ago), ocd (still do), been alone without friends or loved ones for the great majority of my life, being a top student and a thinker was the only thing that kept me going and now I see where I’m going and I don’t like it. I’m thinking about money too, I am used to an expensive lifestyle and I will have to adapt and renounce to many things like traveling and comfort and so on. I don’t blame others for this. I don’t blame the system (just a little). I blame myself, my ingenuity, my short sight. Wish you sincerely all the best for your med test, wish with all my hearth you can get a real job one day, a job that you like.

Day 27

Binge watched Youtube in the morning. Yesterday morning did that too. Which is strange because I don’t like youtube videos and never watched them. Even the most interesting of the bunch are so inherently stupid and empty of any real thinking that I can’t help but feel disgusted. Studied in the afternoon. Never got dressed. I’m still to my parents, and if I were to be honest with myself I’d say I’m here because I’m waiting my new vaping gear I ordered online. Today for the first time in the last months I skipped my lessons, because I didn’t go back to uni city. Didn’t feel too bad for that. I don’t feel much at all lately. Studied in the afternoon.

Memory: was it two years ago? I am to my grandparents and all the family is there, for lunch. Someone’s birthday, probably. I can’t endure all the happiness and joy, it’s hurting me. I am a shell of a person. I am depressed. I go out in the garden, sit down on a stone. in a corner I see a small pink chair, remember it was the seat of the swing that my granddad built for me when I was a little child. He used to push me on it while I sang the same song every day, a song about the comical captain of a little trading ship. Now the pink chair is a waste hidden by the growing grass, the chains are rusty. In the middle of the garden stands a cherry tree. I imagine myself hanging from the tallest branch, lifeless. My granny goes out in the garden and notices me, feels how distant I am. She says “what’s going on?”. Then I start crying over and over, I want to say something but my voice cracks. She hugs me and says she loves me and kisses my tears and I feel better. This is a very simple memory, one of the last of the time of my depression. I didn’t know it, but everything was going to get better in just a few more months.

Have a nice day

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Posted (edited)

1 hour ago, info-gatherer said:

I chosed this path because I loved reading books, watching movies, studying philosphy and theory of literature and so on. My dream was becoming a writer one day. I never accounted for the possibility of failing. Anyway, a couple years later I understood that writing (atleast the kind of writing I like) is not a job, it’s not something you can live with, and now the best next thing is working hard, getting a phd and work in university. Which is not something easy to achieve, the competition is overwhelming. There’s people out there that deserve it much more than me, that would be more happy to make it, that have no doubts and are giving their best to it. I’m happy for them and sincerely wish them to succeed because they are great people. And anyway, I realized that even if I were to succeed, I wouldn’t be fulfilled.

I highly highly recommend the book(or even better - audiobook) Crushing it! By Gary Vaynerchuk, or if you don't want to spend money, then just checking out one of his keynote speeches. Although you should really not be stingy about 15 or so bucks when it comes to unbelievably valuable books that can change a life. Anyways, the point is - in the book he talks about how you can become successful doing what you love. It's not just the old cliche advice "Be yourself, work hard, get employed, hope a publisher notices you". He gives a unique perspective on how you can use modern tools and brand building to absolutely penetrate the world with whatever art you do. Practical examples of people who have done it included, such as a dentist, fashion designer or a wine taster(Gary himself). 

Educate yourself outside the box and you will find other ways, guaranteed.

Edited by JustTom
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5 hours ago, Dannigan said:

Depression is so tough.  I think you may be already swept away by it and within its tight grip. 

lol no worries I’m fine ;) I know what depression is, this thing I’m having now is nothing in comparison. I choosed that memory to remark that now I feel better.

Also, I worked in mainstream press and don’t know how I managed to survive. Every time an article of mine was edited, semplified, brandized, mutilated, destroyed (often they inserted grammar errors as well!!!), I felt I would rather work in a factory. I know what you two mean when you say that I must think out of the box, and you’re probably right, but me and you out of that box see very different things. In my way of seeing it, writing has nothing to do with 1 advertising 2 career 3 art. It’s just narration, and a craft. It’s saying things. And it’s useless too. It’s ok. Now, I don’t know if I am going to write a good book or a bad one, but that is not related to my job. I don’t want it to be part of a job. I mean, yes I could work as a journalist or some other kind of demential job again, but that has nothing to do with writing and is not what I expect to be much fulfilling in my life.

Disclaimer: I respect you and appreciate your help.

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3 hours ago, info-gatherer said:

I don’t want it to be part of a job. I mean, yes I could work as a journalist or some other kind of demential job again, but that has nothing to do with writing and is not what I expect to be much fulfilling in my life.

There is another way you don't know about. Get the book. 

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Posted (edited)

https://imgur.com/a/FiEf9wn Conceptual photography of 5PM, my favourite xD

edit: also this one https://imgur.com/a/pTM3eqH

iPhone panorama mode while train is running, like the effect, videogame-like.

Going to uni city! I almost forgot my tennis lesson!

@JustTom I’ll give the book a try, he’s got 5 minutes to convince me (and I can finally justify to myself having an account on MaM)

Edited by info-gatherer

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Posted (edited)

Day 28

Woke up at 8 or 9, don’t remember. At 11 the pack I was waiting finally arrived. Did some mixing, 10 bottles x 10ml each and a couple bigger ones, 50ml. Then hopped on a train and went to uni city. Played tennis. Single game vs another guy, won 4-1 without trying too hard. Let’s go. My service has become BEAST and it’s good because it allows me to play more offensively and set the pace of the game, thus coping with my weak backhand. It’s definitely not my favourite style (I like Federer, not Nadal), but it’s working so I’ll keep playing like this until my backhand gets better. Tomorrow I’ll be back to the real world and try to prepare my project in the very little time I have left. Good scenario is I succeed, bad is I retire, worst is I try till the very end and make a fool of myself in front of 40 people. Will re-evaluate tomorrow night.

Edited by info-gatherer
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17 hours ago, info-gatherer said:

lol no worries I’m fine ;) I know what depression is, this thing I’m having now is nothing in comparison. I choosed that memory to remark that now I feel better.

Writing has nothing to do with 1 advertising 2 career 3 art. It’s just narration, and a craft. It’s saying things. And it’s useless too. It’s ok. Now, I don’t know if I am going to write a good book or a bad one, but that is not related to my job. I don’t want it to be part of a job. I mean, yes I could work as a journalist or some other kind of demential job again, but that has nothing to do with writing and is not what I expect to be much fulfilling in my life.

Disclaimer: I respect you and appreciate your help.

Oh thank God.  Ok, I was just checking in on you. 

And now I understand what you mean by 'writing', from your perspective.  I respect that.  Writing is supposed to be inspirational to you and 'flow', not to be harnessed by the demands of a job that dictates what you 'ought' to write.  Nothing less than a 'caged bird' feeling, that's my guess.

I am glad you are still carrying on, though.  Cheers!  :)

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Day 29

Goal: write to the Uni shrink: accomplished

Found out I have a little more time than expected for my project. I thought I had to complete it before the 9th, but it’s actually the 14th. Good stuff. I’m reading a long essay about russian judaism that will be useful for what I’m trying to write. I really need to take notes while reading though, because I get some ideas and I need not to forget them. Also need to start the actual writing asap. My bibliography is very small, the 2 mandatory books plus this other one I’m reading, and I’ll probably look for a couple short articles to add if I find anything useful. Today was a very productive day and I’m happy about this. I usually have trouble studying in the weekend but a voice in my head says this time I won’t have trouble.

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Day 30

First time I log into this website without incognito mode. Little step to be less paranoid. Even bookmarked gq. Anyway. Good day, spent the morning with my gf and studied in the afternoon. Not all the time, but more than my usual saturday. It’s very late now. Going to bed.

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Great Job you are over a month!! I will follow your progress. I have also been studying for this whole morning. Let's keep going together!

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Day 31

Surfed the web definitely too much (vaping forum). Must be careful and take responsability for what I did. It’s not good for me to waste so much time (probably 4 hours today). I know it’s just a temporary interest, I’ll stop it eventually when I’ll be bored. But nonetheless. Writing is very difficult right now, I’m almost falling asleep while I type

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Day 32

Productivity was on point. After dinner I even managed to write a page of notes for the project. Must start the actual writing yet. Tomorrow at 11 AM I’ll meet with the professor and I’m glad I’ll show up with some ideas. I hope he gives me the little input I need to get going.

After studying tonight I decided to reward myself with a movie and so now it’s quite late, 2AM. Going to bed.

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Good job man!! Previously when I was addicted to gaming, I always procrastinate till the last minute. Although I still managed to submit my school work, but the quality was bad ....

 

Great to see that you could prepare earlier before meeting your professor! Stay strong!

 

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Thanks man :)

Day 33

Day went fine until a guy that likes to talk a lot holded me hostage for two hours in a close-to-pointless conversation and prevented me from studying as much as I should have. Need to learn when to say no without being scared of hurting other people’s feelings.

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Day 34

Social anxiety kicked in hard. I went to a conference and it wasn’t started yet. In front of the door of the conference room there were so many people that I know. Fellow students. I couldn’t wait there, next to them. I went hiding, currently sitting on the steps of a church. I’m waiting here some 20 minutes, then I’ll go back and take a seat. Can’t help but feel so fucked up right now

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On 2018/5/9 at 8:51 AM, info-gatherer said:

Thanks man :)

Day 33

Day went fine until a guy that likes to talk a lot holded me hostage for two hours in a close-to-pointless conversation and prevented me from studying as much as I should have. Need to learn when to say no without being scared of hurting other people’s feelings.

I completely identify with your feeling!!! I hate being interrupted when I am studying. And I always don't know how to reject people because I am afraid of hurting their feeling.Sometimes I want to stop myself from caring too much about what other people think, but i just can't help...

 

I hope u will find a way out to solve your problem soon. Hang in there man!! we are all here to support u!!

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