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1 hour ago, Catherine17 said:

Day whatever

You know then I said that I was going to get back 'tomorrow' I actually meant that 'I'm going down to the coast of Remorse to drown in lake called Self-Pity'. I spent way too much time on social media, panicking afterwards, trying to finish every assignment needed. I remember watching Tim Urban's TED Talk on procrastination. Absolutely loved this, especially the part about panic monster. Real science, you know. I recalled that because I found out that I have a MONTH before the conference where I need to present my term paper. And tomorrow I will try to approach professor in charge without running away, ashamed and devastated.

Now some basic obvious things I've learned from my relapse:

1. Journalling is important (now that's some irony). It is better to write a small entry instead of waiting for perfect time to write something sophisticated. 

2. Social media are trash as well as any gaming related sources. Gotta figure out what to do with this information.

3. If you decided to get back, delete everything asap. There were days when I said to myself 'alright, tomorrow I am getting back on track and will delete everything' and then decided to have my one last time, again and again.

4. The last but not least: your physical condition is important. (this is why I haven't slept for 36 hours, very stupid of me)

Now a personal thing I've finally realised.

I don't know what I want. I am craving for identity, some label would be enough. I need certainty. I lack feeling of belonging somewhere, of being someone. People usually have their own opinion on different issues, minor or bigger. I don't have any. I can convince myself of anything, because for me there is no wrong or right, there are little truths, each of them is true enough for me. I have so many opinions that I have none. 

The gaming is that it creates a cosy familiar world, where your opportunities are limited, there are rules there. There are rules in real life too but they don't correspond with each other and I simply don't know what rule to follow. This brand new freedom I discover on a detox scares me so much that I escape. I need to learn to trust myself and find the right rules and right truths that would work for me.

 

I'm so sorry you've had such a tough time. It reminds me of when I was in college and realized I needed to quit gaming. Just remember this is all happening because you love yourself and are aware of the pain you've been going through. 

I wanted to share with you a revelation I've made. Video games aren't a hobby. They're a lifestyle. 

This means that gaming controls all aspects of your life. Your social life is through multiplayer games, your creative side is with puzzle, strategy, or building games, your story creativity is with solo platform campaigns. This means that when you quit gaming you're giving up a way of life, not an activity. You're going to have to find multiple hobbies to satisfy and balance all mental, physical, and social needs your body requires to be happy. 

This is a tough challenge, but once you start researching new ideas and understanding your needs you'll be so well prepared to live the life you've always dreamed of living. 

You're doing great and I believe in you. 

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Your writing seems very close to my experience as well, huh. Hang in there! One short tid-bit I'll add regarding this:

4 hours ago, Catherine17 said:

I don't know what I want. I am craving for identity, some label would be enough. I need certainty. I lack feeling of belonging somewhere, of being someone. People usually have their own opinion on different issues, minor or bigger. I don't have any. I can convince myself of anything, because for me there is no wrong or right, there are little truths, each of them is true enough for me. I have so many opinions that I have none. 

 

Defining core values is important to be cognizant of who you *CURRENTLY* are. Emphasizing currently because you will, and should, re-consider and change as you develope. Quoting a classic thinker: "Otherwise you're just an inert chunk of randomly assembled molecules drifting wherever the universe blows you". For example, here's mine I wrote out some time ago: 

On 7/23/2018 at 12:59 AM, JustTom said:

My friend is changing careers and wanted to hear a new perspective, so we had a long-ish skype call and I talked a little bit about reasoning from first principles, which I stole from Elon Musk and how it can be applied to life and career choice as well by first defining the core values of your life, then building upon them what you want to do in life that aligns with those values and finally what methods to use, what professions to take in order to realize that. So as a nice evening mental exercise, I will list my core values in life:

  • Excellence
    • I really value striving to become the strongest version of myself. I see the unbelievable capacity of the human brain and body and it always seemed right to me to try to develop that as much as possible. Therefore, I try to take every decision in my life such that it pushes me into becoming my greatest self in the long-term, even if I sacrifice short-term results or take risks. 
  • Creativity
    • I have immense creative potential, although very unconstrained and untrained in most areas. It is, therefore, my value to project this into the world for no other purpose than to materialize the creative ideas.
  • Health
    • Self-explanatory, but I don't shy away from things that other people label as 'unnatural', such as supplements or even treatments/operations that preserve health (some of them sci-fi)
  • Freedom
    • I don't consider myself shackled to a particular location, country, ideology, methodology or anything really. I value being free to move from 1 thing to the other, borderless mindset.
  • Contribution
    • It's not just pure excellence and creativity. If no-one saw my art, or if I was excellent and creative in something that I did not believe brought value to other people, I would feel very incongruent with myself. 

I might add some more later, this is just off the top of my head. Surprisingly to some people perhaps, family and money are not my values. Money is really just a tool, a resource to be acquired in order to better exercise the other values and I'm not family oriented probably because of how I was raised. My family was never really super community oriented or close, plus I had no siblings, which I think is a big deal. Spirituality I feel like I SHOULD have as a value, but right now I'm just not in the place and time of my life. I am sure I will get into it within the next 4 years for sure.

 

Edited by JustTom
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@BooksandTrees, @JustTom, I cannot thank you enough, guys. I've never been at good at expressing my gratitude, but you should know, that I appreciate it. Finally getting back here, finding your comments, just knowing that somebody found time to write this for me and give me advice...Thank you so much!

@BooksandTrees,
 

On 3/7/2019 at 1:18 AM, BooksandTrees said:

Video games aren't a hobby. They're a lifestyle. 

I should probably print it out. Now I see why I played different kinds of video games instead of picking up one particular genre. They fulfilled all my various needs, contributing to my (various) problems. And gaming made everything seem easier, so when I actually took up new hobbies, they turned out to be 'time-consuming' and 'unrewarding', so I kept getting back to the main source of instant gratification.

@JustTom,

Figuring out who I am will definitely take some time. Especially considering the fact that I've been 'randomly assembled molecules' most of my life. I'll try to reassemble myself, though. Thank you for sharing!

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Day 2/90

Day 2, because it is less mainstream. Yesterday I wasn't sure that I won't relapse. Now I stand more or less firmly on the path. 

It is Wednesday, the week is going to be intense (or at least I want to see it that way. I have a lot of things planned)

On Monday I visited my new pupil. Her name is Diana too (as well as my first pupil), it's a bit funny. She is eleven, she doesn't want to study and she and her mother think that hiring a tutor will automatically solve their problems. She reminded me of myself back at her age. I wanted to study, but I also wanted to spend time with my friends and live a normal life, goals I didn't accomplish. I think we can get along. I don't like children at all but I did my best, trying to teach her without being too much of a grown-up, seeing her as my pupil, not as a random annoying kid, I guess. We'll see.

On Tuesday, my Day 1, I took part in what they called 'international event' as a volunteer. However, we were misled and given wrong information about what we were supposed to do. Instead of translating, we provided simple assistance to those who didn't know where they could get a cup of coffee. However, this experience was important for me. I've been envious towards those who did volunteer work, so I went on and tried it for myself. I needed to prove myself that I could do that. I did. Entrepreneurs marked with a seal of abundant life looked at us as we were some furniture for them. I smiled at their jokes, handed out leaflets to them, wished them a good day as a programmed robot and enjoyed it a lot.

Today I attended classes, went to swimming pool and to creative writing in the evening. Today one of our professors, who is also a renowned author and supervisor of my pathetic term paper, talked to us about what she called 'the energy of the short story'. She inspired me a lot! (not to write my term paper, however) In the end we all wrote a really short story, merely a draft and presented it to the other participants. I like when people are sharing their vision, I like to study them and they are more interesting than any character could be.

I finally got to round to sketching! I used Annabel Burton work as a reference. Her watercolour technique is truly amazing! I used to paint a lot and now I am struggling, trying to come up with something original. I want to heal and return creativity I once possessed.

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Day 3/90

Oh my, I am surprised I made it to the Day 3. I thought about video games a lot. But I also thought about small sketching course, the upcoming conference, my term paper, my short stories...And it's only Day 3.

Today I paid a visit to a research community in my uni. There were five people attending the meeting today. Don't know whether I'll come again.

I came across my psychologist and my former driving instructor. Well, they both were kinda busy, so I could say I just saw them. Nodded to my psychologist, who had convinced me into getting professional help first, had promised to recommend me a good specialist whom I could see off the record and then she just ignored me. Last November I was desperate and depressed and probably needed to take medications and she just ghosted me. I am glad she was too busy talking to someone else so I couldn't approach her and ask her what the actual...

Despite the fact I didn't pass my driving test and that slowly led me to depression, I may say I cherish some memories about driving school. I'll save them for another day.

It takes me a lot of time to write an entry. I keep distracting and I don't like it. I do everytjing on computer, everything. I can't remember when was the last time I spent time away from it. 

 

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I think a productive way to look at this is, ask yourself, if you could go back and react differently while still being honest with yourself but also respectful of others, how would you behave in the scenario? What would you say to express your desire, while not including an offensive vibe towards others? 

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@fawn_xoxo, thank you for your response! It's been always hard for me to express my emotions and set my boundaries, so usually I start behaving defensively and then feel awful about myself. I don't know whether my second message to her even contained an offensive vibe. The first message was less personal and we had a deal that four people is enough, but then my friend wrote that it wasn't enough and the more people would come the more fun we would had.

Basically, I wrote 'tbh, i meant something different, we all know each other and it may be a little bit uncomfortable for me to have a stranger around'. And then said 'well, at least u bein honest', but I said I am sorry just in case and she said everything's fine.

May be I am just overthinking it as usual. What would I do different? I wouldn't send the second message. This story got this sequel today so I no longer need to worry about it being a friendly get-together, because it definitely won't be one. Of course, I freaked out and I really wanted to say what's on my mind (and that would contain an offensive vibe FOR SURE) , then I thought that you wrote to me and just put my phone down. There was nothing I could fix so I decided not to add insult to injury and let it be way this is going to be (spoiler: probably horrible)

Edited by Catherine17

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Day 0/90

Well, I did it again. Yesterday I went on an emotional roller coaster, I was sad and frustrated in the morning, then I had an amazingly rewarding lesson with Diana, so I felt pretty much excited, then I was nervous (suddenly felt very scared  for my future), then I went to the theatre and it was so great! It was probably the best opera I've ever listened to. The story was related to the place I live and it contained a lot of ethnic and historical motives intertwined. I don't usually enjoy love stories (and, of course, it was there), but this one was something. At some point I even felt that one day I might be able to love someone for real.

And in conclusion I installed a game immediately then I returned home. Stayed up all night. I slept for 2 hours or less. 

I almost ditched classes today. Technically, I still ditched one (I didn't feel well)  and now I have to prepaire a lot of stuff. Well, I have a lot of stuff to prepaire aside from that. Aaand I shouldn't play. Mustn't play.

I was accepted to copywriting 'school', a two month's project from our university. I did applied for this a couple of weeks ago, but it was the laziest application ever (trust me, I didn't even try to sound good). I am pleasantly surprised to be accepted, but back then I didn't hope much and now I am more than unprepaired.

I am glad I will stay busy but I need to work harder than I already do.

But there is one game that literally haunts me. I've played it this winter, finished the mein plot but I was rushing things hoping that if I finished that one, I would be able to move on. Now I desperately want to play it again. Nothing helps much. It's like this game is always at the corner of my mind. I know I won't enjoy it, I know I mustn't play games, especially right now, but nothing can make it go away. 

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Since mobile games are games too

Day 0/90

Now I am trying to finish a huge assignment for tomorrow's project and I need a break. I probably won't sleep today again.

Today was fine, I manage to get out of the house, went on adventurous trip (I get on the wrong bus and travelled to the remote part of town. It happens all the time. Once I even travelled to another town....). I bought a present for my mom, her birthday is coming. I even dropped a little hint about it. Unfortunately, she doesn't want  to see me happy, because she had a fight with me over...over literally nothing.

She asked at what time I'll come back home tomorrow and I said that I don't know, because I don't know. I have this conference and then creative writing in the evening. I really don't know. She kept asking me, however. How would I suppose to know that. Now she is mad at me and I am getting back to self-harm and crying again. How am I supposed to finish all this....

Really depressed now.

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It’s okay to hurt. It’s okay to break and fall. It’s okay that life sucks and is stressful and you need a break. It’s okay to not know. And it’s okay to be you.  

You’re making good progress. It sounds like you have a lot on your plate. Keep holding on. Just do your best today even if your best is just crawling or curling into a ball to protect against the pain. Keep breathing and keep moving forward. I believe you can do it and that you’re strong (I’ve read some of your previous posts). You’ve got this Catherine!

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Day 3/90

I am slowly making it through the day 3. 

Day 1 was truly amazing! It started at 6 a.m and I was out of the house for more than 14 hours. After classes I gave a talk about video game addiction on our student conference. That was awesome, considering the fact that I barely have managed to write it. It was so strange having other students approaching me, thanking and complimenting me on my talk. It was the first time I've admitted my addiction openly. And nobody made a big deal out of it. Well, I guess, people tend to be less judgemental when they have their own stuff to handle. I've met a guy from Britain and invited him to have a cup of tea after the conference. We were chatting and laughing and everything went really well. In the evening I had creative writing class. We were discussing Hemingway's story Soldier's Home. I like Hemingway's method but his male characters are...too honest, I guess?  I envy that level of honesty but also think that we sometimes need to look better than we are. Especially when it comes to reading something about the opposite sex.

I came back home and finally got enough sleep. Enough sleep to ruin the day 2.

The classes were alright, I didn't allow a stupid conflict to escalate and let it go quickly. I applied for a scholarship and to a student conference. I hoped that it would help me to get round my term paper. Then I returned home and did my fair share of nothing. I wrote a bit, yes, but it was nothing in comparison to what I have planned. It is hard for me to work home and stay concentrated on boring time-consuming tasks but at the same I want work at home because it is more comfortable. I cannot work outside since my laptop is the slowest creature in the material world and I multitasking gives me headache, so I cannot work during other classes. So I will either fail or develop a healthiest approach to this student routine of mine. 

Today I am having quite a busy day at university. In the evening a couple of my friends and I are hanging out together but I hope I still can do something afterwards.

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I used to work from home for years, from the same computer I gamed. Taking my work outside of the house helped me tremendously with focus, focus impossible to achieve when comfortable.

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On 3/22/2019 at 5:21 AM, Catherine17 said:

Day 3/90

I am slowly making it through the day 3. 

Day 1 was truly amazing! It started at 6 a.m and I was out of the house for more than 14 hours. After classes I gave a talk about video game addiction on our student conference. That was awesome, considering the fact that I barely have managed to write it. It was so strange having other students approaching me, thanking and complimenting me on my talk. It was the first time I've admitted my addiction openly. And nobody made a big deal out of it. Well, I guess, people tend to be less judgemental when they have their own stuff to handle. I've met a guy from Britain and invited him to have a cup of tea after the conference. We were chatting and laughing and everything went really well. In the evening I had creative writing class. We were discussing Hemingway's story Soldier's Home. I like Hemingway's method but his male characters are...too honest, I guess?  I envy that level of honesty but also think that we sometimes need to look better than we are. Especially when it comes to reading something about the opposite sex.

I came back home and finally got enough sleep. Enough sleep to ruin the day 2.

The classes were alright, I didn't allow a stupid conflict to escalate and let it go quickly. I applied for a scholarship and to a student conference. I hoped that it would help me to get round my term paper. Then I returned home and did my fair share of nothing. I wrote a bit, yes, but it was nothing in comparison to what I have planned. It is hard for me to work home and stay concentrated on boring time-consuming tasks but at the same I want work at home because it is more comfortable. I cannot work outside since my laptop is the slowest creature in the material world and I multitasking gives me headache, so I cannot work during other classes. So I will either fail or develop a healthiest approach to this student routine of mine. 

Today I am having quite a busy day at university. In the evening a couple of my friends and I are hanging out together but I hope I still can do something afterwards.

Working from home is so frustrating because there are many factors that feed into bad habits.  The only way I've been able to work from home is by setting deadlines for myself, but that leads to stress.  In school I'd procrastinate and get angry when studying until I could do it.  It was much easier to go to the school's computer lab and work on stuff with colleagues and classmates.  That's why I wish I had a cartoon studio or something so i could go to and write.  My desk area is in my bedroom so it's easy for me to go to sleep, watch distracting videos, etc.

One thing I realized is I only work in sprints.  I can only be productive for 30-45 minutes at a time without getting bored or needing a break to walk around.  This is the same for fun work as well as school or work work.  If this is something you struggle with try to be more forgiving to yourself and allow yourself 30-45 minute periods of time to write your paper and 30 minutes of time to stretch, walk, read something, talk to a friend, cook food for your week, beat up a homeless person, yell at ants outside as loud as possible, something to get your mind in a different place for a few minutes.

I wouldn't suggest two of the options I recommended.

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