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Edward's Journal


Zakaex
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Day 44   (February 25, 2016)

Funny enough, lost last night is still haunting me throughout the day at times. I even decided to start hiring a personal trainer to increase my overall athleticism starting next week; I was that frustrated at myself. Though basketball is a team game and that everybody should have played a role in it, I cannot help but replay in my mind the same scenarios where I missed a shot and could have possibly turned the loss into a win instead. Despite being just an intramurals game, knowing that you could have trained more actually fueled my determination to get better at basketball.

Decided to hit the gym again in the afternoon today, specifically looking for more pickup games. Chatting up with a few ballers for an open spot has become more of second nature to me now, so I would say that regarding to upping my social game - this is a small achievement that I am very proud of indeed. 

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All of that practice on the social side compounds over time - just like your progress at the gym and in every other area of your life. The small interactions I've had each day over the past few years have really changed the game for me over time. Also, I just want to recognize you for recognizing yourself. Being proud of yourself is so important. Keep recognizing yourself, it's how you build real self-esteem.

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All of that practice on the social side compounds over time - just like your progress at the gym and in every other area of your life. The small interactions I've had each day over the past few years have really changed the game for me over time. Also, I just want to recognize you for recognizing yourself. Being proud of yourself is so important. Keep recognizing yourself, it's how you build real self-esteem.

Thanks, man! I would for sure recommend the Headspace meditating app if that's the case! I figured that a big part of all the lessons I have been going through was to train ourselves to become more aware of both internals and externals around us.

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Day 45   (February 26, 2016)

Successfully rolled on a three-day streak to eating more healthily: today was especially hard being a rest day, and that all I had to keep me going was two small meals with a few fruits in between the day. When tempted to 'relapse' by checking out the pizza delivery sites, I just went and watched a few YouTube videos of motivating athletes and use that to aid my visualization of who I aspire to be, needless to say, that helped and got me through another day. 

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Day 46   (February 27, 2016)

Feeling accomplished yet another day. However, I have come to realize one of the biggest problems I am experiencing that is causing most of us to procrastinate: The Parkinson's Law. By definition, it means "a reference to the self-satisfying uncontrolled growth of the bureaucratic apparatus in an organization." An example for this will be if we are were given ten worksheets to complete by the end of the day, we would be stretching out the hours and divide our day, completing one worksheet every two hours or so. But if we are assigned to finish ten sheets to complete within two hours, we will find the energy and time to do so. 

This might be the root cause of why I could never free up more time for myself to do more than I should - consistently procrastinating and stretching out the hours so that just the right amount of work can be done by the end of the day and nothing more. By recognizing this 'reference,' I will be more aware of what I am doing in between tasks and check to see if these "breaks" I am taking a really appropriate for the limited amount of time we each only have so much.

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Day 47   (February 28, 2016)

Studied a self-help video from Tai Lopez today on "8 Ways To Not Waste Time And Procrastinate", a book filled with sagacious advice from Seneca, the philosopher. The book "On The Shortness Of Life" actually spoke to me in a sense that I have fallen prey to a mis-weighting bias in life, spending so much time on diversions such as gaming, and not enough on the things that matter in life. When it also comes to choosing which new game to buy, I become extravagant in my decisions. While remaining frugal at the time I spend staring at the computer screen day after day. 

With that said, having only book knowledge is useless, the important thing about learning is to implement this wisdom in my daily life so that I can avoid making the same mistakes over again. Despite spending almost half of my life in games, I hope it is not too late to start doubling down myself now - keeping up with the daily reading (and slowly increasing the amount every week), working out and keeping my body in shape and meditating to keep my mind sharper.

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Day 48   (February 29, 2016)

Went to meet with my new training consultant today, real nice guy, also studies in the same campus as I do. One of the things that got us talking was obviously the popular hobby of gaming that all we boys enjoyed since very young, that in the combination of our hobbies for athletics established a real quick friendship (and a customer for him too). 

Tonight, I even felt rather nostalgic and decided to look up on some YouTube videos on League Of Legends, and although subtle, I started to get cravings from the looks of it. Despite how tempting it seemed, luck would have it that my housemates were watching Netflix in the living room (hogging most of the internet) and installing games was immediately off from the list of (want)to-do's. Understanding that these cravings (nostalgia) will always come one way or the other throughout the detox, it is important that I start preparing for the next thunderstorm. A temporary solution so far is to delete the video search and viewed history from my YouTube account, that way no gaming related videos will ever show up in my "Watch again" or "You might like..." sections.

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A temporary solution so far is to delete the video search and viewed history from my YouTube account, that way no gaming related videos will ever show up in my "Watch again" or "You might like..." sections.

I did this two weeks ago. It helped me a lot with my cravings.

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Day 49   (March 1, 2016)

One full month of non-gaming! Very proud of my accomplishments, but still plenty of days till I get there. So far, the biggest challenge I discovered that we all have to face after leaving this dangerous addiction behind is not getting fearing that we are tempted back to relapse, but fearing what life has to offer us beyond gaming. 

I figured that wasting my life all these years on a computer/TV screen has placed me away far from all my old high school colleagues who are now already submitting their cover letters when I am still trying to figure out what to do in the future. Though the fear of being left out sucks a lot, through the assimilation of knowledge throughout the detox has taught me to use instead fear as a motivating drive to push me forwards. Which, the longer I think about, the better I feel about my current situation. No good will come out by knowing I am already behind and worrying about it too, but only by injecting hard work and gritting my teeth to grind it out harder than the rest of them will I finally be able to compete with not only them but hopefully the successful athletes/businessmen in the world.

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Day 50 (March 2, 2016)

Not a ravishing day today (mood-wise) relapsed with everything from procrastinating to junk food and almost spent half the day on Netflix. Luckily I am already on a roll for no video games, but there are still plenty of outlets for me to go for right now when I am bored. I figured that maybe I really should go through Respawn again for the second time not to the video games right now but for the other bad habits that I am trying to get rid out of my life.

I also realized that as an INTP, I am prone to "reject logical reasoning even in situations that require it, asserting the supremacy of their internal viewpoint." This characteristic when combined with "gift" of "Long-range vision" and "Curious and creative" would be rather self-defeating at times. I plan on going on Udemy.com tomorrow to sharpen my logical and critical thinking skills to maneuver around this world with more ease.

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Day 51 (March 3, 2016)

Was reading today the audio book version of "On The Shortness Of Life" by Seneca, a great stoic philosopher. One quote that stuck with me was when he said (translated) “You act like mortals in all that you fear, and like immortals in all that you desire”. That hit me on a deeper level because when you think about it: during life-threatening situations (i.e. while crossing a road without heeding pedestrian lights) we would only then heightened all our focus and energy in the now and avoid it at all costs. When it comes to what we want in the long term, we tend to sit back and leave it to 'tomorrow-land'. 

That made me realize the saying that says the hardest part of doing anything is to start it (or somewhere amongst those lines), perhaps we are always so sold on to the media nowadays where through the movies and news everyone gets what they want within mere days or weeks. When in reality, Bill Gates worked from age twenty to thirty, claiming that he never took a day off, and Arnold Schwarzenegger started his bodybuilding since he was only around seven. Perhaps we have already been too biased about these people, blaming only our externals and forgetting that most of them deserved it because they have put in the hours.

After coming back home from class listening to that chapter from Seneca, I immediately began to jump onto whatever it is I needed to do. How foolish it was for us all to not realize we are entitled to create anything back, anything except for time.

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Day 52 (March 4, 2016)

While reading over "How to Talk to Anyone: 92 Little Tricks for Big Success in Relationships" by Leil Lowndes today I encountered a fascinating method to attract more people towards your social circle, she named this process the "Scrabble Therapy". Scrabble Therapy is the idea in which you set out to do something different every four weeks or so, that way you slowly collect unique experiences not only for your sake of living out a full life. By doing something out of the ordinary also gives you the necessary tools to become a 'modern day Renaissance man.' and sometimes in life, that one time where you went out to mountain climbing may just be the key to connecting and building a long-term relationship with your dream girl. 

Just food for thought for the day for me. Although the whole idea seems uncomfortable, just like going on this video game detox, the rewards do seem rather infinite.

Edited by Zakaex
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Day 53 (March 5, 2016)

Had a pretty calm and regular day today, managed to stay off video games, did some reading and recovered at home from some strenuous workouts this week. My DOMS a.k.a. Delayed onset muscle soreness as indicated by my personal trainer have been kicking in as a result of "unaccustomed exercise", I guess this is where the cliche phrase "no pain, no gain" comes from, luckily, I was already prepared for something like this to happen. Despite the upcoming weeks of incoming terrible pain, there is hopefully a light shining at the end of the tunnel.

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Day 54 (March 6, 2016)

Downloaded a new book called "The Pomodoro Technique" by Damon Zahariades onto my Kindle and did a quick read as I finished my brunch. Despite being familiar already with this time tracking technique (25-minute work, 5-minute break = one Pomodoro), I was still not being as productive as I thought it should be. After every 'Pomodoro' I still end up procrastinating, browsing YouTube, reading books (though considered a healthy habit, it is still not helping me accomplish my assignment for the week). 

This book covers exactly the issues underlying problems as such: Pomodoro is a technique intended to give you only maximum focus on one single task, but we still tend to fall prey to Parkinson's Law ("work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion."). Working in 25-minute increments does not cure procrastination because we can just fit in more 25-minutes throughout the day until we realize we have run out of time, rather, one of the key takeaways I have taken away from this book so far is applying the Timeboxing technique to the Pomodoro Technique. What that does is to limit ourselves to a certain allocated number of Pomodoro's (25-minutes), that way perfectionism is discouraged on any task given which could significantly reduces the time you need to accomplish it.

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Yep 100%. Sometimes having less time is the best thing we can do for our productivity.

Also, not sure if the book touches on it or not but during your "break" it's important to keep it non-digital. Go for a walk, get some tea, go outside for a minute, etc. Stay off your phone, social media, YouTube and so forth and you'll find a lot more success getting back into your next block.

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Yep 100%. Sometimes having less time is the best thing we can do for our productivity.

Also, not sure if the book touches on it or not but during your "break" it's important to keep it non-digital. Go for a walk, get some tea, go outside for a minute, etc. Stay off your phone, social media, YouTube and so forth and you'll find a lot more success getting back into your next block.

Now that you have mentioned it, there was a section on how to use those 5-minute breaks efficiently, and it is as you have outlined. Social media/YouTube are dangerous drugs for productivity because of the amount of content there is out there, and it is strongly recommended to stick to things like cleaning up and stretching.

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Day 55 (March 7, 2016)

Got dissed today by a group of seniors on me not able to play physical on the court in a pick-up game (lol). As an INFP personality type that hit me hard, yet it is just what I needed; I better start learning how to toughen up in this world now if I have to win it. I walked back home today thinking to myself how nice would it be if I could ease my helplessness onto video games again, being the main hero that (usually) gets all the women and dominates as the strongest over time within a matter of hours. Whereas in real life, the grind feels like forever, it could take months and years, and even then you wouldn't even be able to see progress. However tough it may be, I realized now as Bruce Lee once said, “‎The successful warrior is the average man, with laser-like focus.” I have to stop hiding from a shell and man up to this world.

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Day 56 (March 8, 2016)

Finished the day off proudly. Despite losing my third intramurals game, I was happy about the progress made through self-improvement. It used to be that every time I stepped on the basketball court, the anxiety and nervousness all kicks in - as if the pressure was all on me. But when you peel back the layers of reality, basketball is just a team game where everybody takes a part of the match. Throughout these forty or so days of focused meditation, I was finally able to get myself into a much more focused, flow-like state. Where, instead of trying to struggle with my inner demons and forcing myself to get better mentally, I was able to accept the situations placed in front of me; know my limitations and capitalize on my strengths. Similar to how to serenity prayer puts in: 

"God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change; 
courage to change the things I can; 
and wisdom to know the difference."

I am not a very religious person by any means, but through a month and a half of meditation, I was able to feel a difference in calming the mind in order to see a bigger picture of things.

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