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WuqingDi

Life changing journey

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Hello! This is my first diary ever and also my first attempt to quit gaming. I am a lazy person, but I'll try to update in daily.

https://forum.gamequitters.com/index.php?/topic/7058-im-gonna-say-bye-to-the-gaming/  This is my story (a little messy, but I tried to be more specific and less wordy. Maybe later I'll change it more accordingly to my tastes, but for now let it be)

I'd like to indtroduce myself as a person who grew up with not only offline/online-solo gaming, but also the termine "e-Sports" (which I kinda hate, but netherless). I started following professional scene of Dota from 12-13 years old and as I was growing up, e-Sports accompanied me throughout my teenage years so now it's become an inseparable part from my being. As I grew up, I started to play more games (like CS GO, LoL and HeartStone) and, also, become a fan of corresponding competitive scenes. It sounds normal, but from this I have a lot of problems:

1. As I play a game and encounter a bad day (it happens when you lose 2-3 games consecutively and as I play a co-needed games sometimes the lose is not because of me), so I try another game instead of stoping playing. As you can see the pattern, I can kill a day just playing games totally ignoring RL and all I must do. Also it gives me my second actual problem: toxicity.

2. I hate to admit it, but sometimes I'm very toxic in games. I know it's not my true nature, but more like an environment defence instinct. I think a lot of people who play online games will understand me: sometimes we don't bother ourselves with that we say and how we behave in internet. I dont like it. I want to be myself in every possible way and if in real life I can be quite, in online games I don't even try it. You can say it relives stress which isn't a bad thing, but after swearing on someone I'll feel upset because of what I've said. No stress relived, but more acquired.

3. Time. Priority. I can give gaming all I have to get nothing in return. I don't like it. And there are many more reasons.

Summarizing:

At first I didn't want to admit to it, thinking "can gaming really be an addiction?". But, after honestly asking my innermost feelings, I have to admit that I'm addicted. I couldn't admit if before because I knew the reason, but never had the balls to admit it: without gaming I'm nothing. Seriously, all I did in my life was gaming. There was a period when I couldn't talk about anything with my CLOSEST friends other than gaming. It felt so shameful and frustrating that I had no other interests/hobbies in life. There was a period when I was thinking about becoming a pro gamer, but ultimately gave up: I'm not even excellent in the game I've played most of the time. Because firstly I did it for fun and later just for a habbit. I've never tried to reach the apex.

So, now being aware of my situation, I want to change it. I have no particular dreams/goals in my life, maybe only one: be true to myself and be free. I want to control my own life, if I feel like I'm wasting my time and recources on the things which give me nothing in return, not even satisfaction, then what's the point in doing it? I reassured myself that I can't quit because I've put up money in some games, buying hats and continue playing just for this wack reason. Screw it. For now all I want is to try 90 days challenge. I know I can easly take 5-6 days without gaming, but one month? two months? even three? I can't be assured, so I'll try it with my utmost determination.

Hope this journal will help me passing through this period and reaching my ultimate objectives: bringing new things in my life and becoming more aware.

For now I don't have anything in mind that I want to try, so I'll just stick with some books I wanted to read.

DAY 1

I was studying all day long, which surprised me, because usually I'll take a pause and play some games for maybe 1-2 hours (sometimes it became all day of playing instead of "pauses") and only after that I'll reassume my studies. You can imagine how disctracted I was usually. Feels great to study all day long in a while. I know it's not something to be proud of, but it's a good start, isn't it? Later, around 9 p.m. I opened youtube and just like that I've been watching some video games content for 1-2 hours straight. Feels bad to dedicate so much time to it, I need to cut it little by little later.

DAY 2

The day went normally, except I again have been watching youtube for 2 hours (and maybe more) and it's not even the evening. I think I'm trying to fill the gap of gaming using it, so screw it. 1 hour a day till the saturday. Good thing I started reading more, but it bothers me that other than reading I have nothing else. It feels like I need to find something new, or pick up which I left behind because I "didn't have time". So I decided to continue learning programming. Now I have time and possibility, but why it feels like I'm rejecting in internally? Feels like my inner self is speaking to me: "you have better options to do, like gaming or watching youtube". Funny. eh? Never knew I'd say it, but screw my inner self!

Edited by WuqingDi

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@WuqingDi welcome! That's good you decided to start journaling. It is a great tool to get to know what's going on. 

Grayscale your phone, it will make youtube less interesting. 

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DAY 3

The day passed smoothly. Today I've been watching youtube for only 1 hour. Though I didn't have any more time to watch it, even if I wanted to😆. My sister took me out, she broke up with her boyfriend not too long ago, so I was helping her today, but in reality (maybe) I was helping myself. I'm single for some time so it'd be a lonely Valentine's day. In the end, I can't say I'm happy (I'm an indifferent type), but at least I didn't think about games today. Feels great, hope it'll continue like this. I still have a little more time before bed, so might just study programming.

Also, happy Valentine's day, everyone! Hope you all had a great day!

Edited by WuqingDi

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DAY 4

Morning was good, but had a little headache when it was nearing midday. Now I need to go to the library, it opens at 2 pm. I can't study at home, it's sad that I have only 1 hour to get from college to library (with house as an intermediate point where I can have lunch). This is the busiest time of the day for me. Also, I have a test tomorrow.

After 2 hours of reviewing test materials I think I'm ready. Still have around 3 hours before it's closing, so might as well study something else.

Oh, and I've tried DuoLingo. It's funny I didn't know about it before. I wanted to study chinese for some time already, but didn't have any resources and always was saying to myself "it will take so much time to collect the resources". And that time was always dedicated to gaming. Now I can learn it in meantime, while doing what I have to do for now: getting driving license, not falling behind in my college and aslo lerning more programming. After finishing my driving exams I'll go to the gym. Didn't go there for 3-4 years, it's gonna help with disciplining myself I think (hope to cop with it, no snapping, no escaping and no gaming, amen).

After going home I've studied some programming, now I plan to watch something on netflix and go to sleep. Bad thing I nearly had a snap: a desire to play some heartstone with my new deck is so big I can't expresss it. But still, I persevere.

Edited by WuqingDi

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DAY 5

Today was great, I've learned the numbers in chinese (and also a little of names, but I'm still bad at it) with DuoLingo. Later just spent time watching youtube, which feels ok because I didn't watch any game's content. Surprisingly, I've found a good film on netflix. It was about Einstein with a typical catchy title (something like "inside the mind of..."). Nevermind the title, it was really interesting (not novative, but it's my first film about Enstein, so I took a pleasure watching it). Bad thing, I again had some thoughts about gaming. It's getting harder to controll myself, but for today I'm still ok. The only problem is that right now I feel literally exhausted without doing anything. I think it's like this because I had two free hours when I didn't have to do anything, and usually I'd play some games in times like this, but now I don't know (and neither want) to do anything. How can I describe it? Frustrating. I've finally casted aside gaming hoping to do more productive things, but I still pity myself and laze around. Hope I'll be able to cope with my desires...

Edited by WuqingDi

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I also experience this feeling of wanting to lay down, think of nothing and do nothing. I can recommend that, whenever you find yourself feeling that way, you think of anything to do, and no matter how boring and pointless it seems to be, you start doing it. Worst thing that can happen is you'll find it boring, but there's a chance that you'll get hooked and forget about your wearyness. It doesn't have to be anything extraordinary, for instance, I usually read in those moments. It's normal that sometimes you want to rest- it's one of your needs, Cam talks about it in this video

Remember, noone said this was going to be easy. But I believe that you'll find strength to get through.

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@mattso thx for sharing your opinion (and for the video, didn't know there was an youtube channel) and also for encouraging. I came to the same conclusion: if I don't want to do anything because I think games are an better option then moreso I just HAVE TO do something.

DAY 6

Today I bought some new courses on udemy, it's always fun to learn new things (at least at the start :D). Also, it feels great because being busy had me not thinking about games. Oh, and I watched pilot of Prison Break (which my friend called the best tv show ever). I found it interesting, but usually I can't watch more than one episode per day, because it becomes boring somehow, which is sad because I won't have time for at least next 2-3 days (have a test at wednesday, need to prepare). Good monday to you guys, hope you'll cope with it (wish it never started T_T)

Edited by WuqingDi

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DAY 8

These 2 days I went ahead with my course, it's really a good way to not think about games, just need to be busy enough. (I have a test tomorrow, so I couldn't work a lot on my course). The downside is stress and some emptiness, when I don't want to do anything, but ultimately force myself. In the end, by today's evening I've decided to skip a day at college tomorrow. I know it's bad to run away from the problems, but better that than gaming out of stress. Maybe I pity myself too much, but better safe than sorry. I'll just find a caffe and read a book for some hours, maybe I'll code something interesting. Nothing in common with that college dictates me to code. I need to refresh myself out of this vicious cycle before it'll eat me whole. I don't know if somebody can relate: you don't do anything special, just your normal routine, but if you do it for so much time if starts to kill you from inside. Some family problems also played a part. Good thing I didn't game and even took less time watching/associating with any game's content, so even in these conditions I feel a little proud and hopeful about future.

Some thoughts: gaming addiction is a bad thing (as is any other type of addiction), but seeing some progress (even a little) is giving you joy. For me, even the smallest amount of joy is giving me strength. So, I hope nothing major will happen and I'll continue like this (didn't mean escaping my problems by that, I'll try to avoide it in the future)

Edited by WuqingDi

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DAY 9

Didn't really skip the college, dunno why but after waking up I found strength to do things in the right way. The only awful part of the day is that I have a headache for nearly half a day: from the morning till around 5-6 p.m, frantically, I was killing my mind trying to code a program in the wrong way. Funny thing, I knew it was wrong, but still kept persisting up, hoping to find a good solution to a hopeless case. Good thing: I, indeed, have resolved it, only to find out in the end that I can't run my programm: I couldn't apply my solution to a real-time run. Finally gave up with satisfaction (I know it's kinda vague, but it'll take too long to express it all, so summarising: tried to do something in a stupid way, knew it was stupid but still kept doing it, only to find out (nearly after half a day of effort) that it was impossible. Well, it's a good thing to give some "food" to your brain, but then you become zealos it always ends bad...)

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DAY 11

Had a test today. It was funny: all my classmates were so anxious, but I wasn't very motivated from the begining. In the end, I was right: the test was very easy, now, as I look back, I think they all looked like fools this morning trying to study in the last moments, while I was relaxing, listeting to music😂. The hard thing starts from tomorrow: I have another test next Tuesday, this one will be 100% hard. I'll start studying from tomorrow.

Bad thing: didn't study any of my courses for the past two days. I'll force myself to study something this Sunday, otherwise I'll become a potato from that moment! (if I'll study something tomorrow, it still counts as me studying in Sunday.)

P.S. Don't want to become potato🥔😱

Edited by WuqingDi
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DAY 15

Had a great time preparing for the test, I did great! All pent up stress and suffering was good for this moment when you hand over your work-test all beautifully done. Also, I became potato🥔😱. Didn't work on any courses, but did some coding. Now I'm gonna relax for some days, have a good week everyone!

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DAY 25

Didn't post anything for a long time, was busy. Now I fully understand why it's so hard to give up gaming. After my first motivation died I'm left with desperation. If before I considered gaming as a sweet that I'd like to try, now I more consider it like a medicine (it's not about drugs, but more like pills from headache, etc. i.e. regular medicine you take then you're ill). I don't know if somebody can relate, but because it was my first time trying to quit gaming and I did well for some days, I thought it would be easy for me to quit and live a new life. Now I understand it was all about self-hypnosis or maybe trying different thing for a while? Maybe I'm to vague and can't understand it entirely myself, so let's just describe how I feel and what will I do (it will help me understand my situation better, I think).

So, let's start from this: Giving up gaming was an act from me to do more productive things, deepening in coding, self-realization throught new things which will help me shape myself in a way I'd like to be, etc. But now, looking back for some days already, I do nothing particularly important. Yes, I have things that I can work on and improve myself. But I just don't want to do it. So I don't do it. Instead, I've filled the hole from gaming with other things that ultimately waste time: watching useless youtube videos, reading books even when I don't want to read them, just to kill time. I've even decided to watch some animes (even though I haven't watched more than two or three animes for like 5-6 years). I, ultimately, do the same thing as when I was gaming: avoid important things and waste my time in a process. Now I'm really frustrated, I have headache for like 3-4 days straight without a reason. Here come the second point:

I just want the world to stay still, to let me adapt, but it's like a never stoping train, goes on and on. And I'm like an unfortunate passanger who's caught a nausea and feels dizzy. The problem is nobody can help me, and I don't really want to receive any help. I just want to be alone for 2-3 days, without seeing or speaking with anyone. The problem is it's impossible for me. So from this I've decided to: 1. start meditating more and seriously. Had this idea before, was doing meditation for some time, but never on a regular basis. Now I really need it. 2. Go away from social life: delete or take away all messengers, social networks, any way to actively communicate with others for 2-3 days. I'm really done with it, but mosly with myself. I never was a sociable guy, but in public I "play" an energetic guy who's never ashamed nor feels down. The problem is, I "play" it unconsciously, it feels like my personality (or more like the way of thoughts) switches whenever I'm in a public place. When I'm alone I'm pretty calm and indifferent, I like it a lot and it feels more natural. My real problem is, I can't controll myself in public because I instinctively fear rejection. I don't really care about public opinion... being honest, I care a little but it's because of my inferiority complex, not my personality. So, being (or playing) on public for a long time is drowning me in depression. I do know that I can go without "friiends", but having some social standing in class (and with "friends") and not being a reject feels more relaxing than being one, doesn't it? So I need to play on public (actually I can't stop it even if I'd wanted to, because I've tried it - my limit was 1 day). From this I'll try, as I've said at the start, to limit my intercations with people to only my family for some days.

Having written this, I feel less burdened and more happy to sharing my thoughts, even if it won't relate to anybody or noone will understand me. Hope you all will have a great week, stay healthy and also I'd like to congratulate all women on this day. I'll try to post more regularly here, it really helps.

P.S. Sorry for bad grammar, it's night time and I'm a little tired.

Edited by WuqingDi
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12 hours ago, WuqingDi said:

But now, looking back for some days already, I do nothing particularly important.

You do. You spend day after day without games. This daily choice of yours really matters, even if you don't feel like it does. Those daily choices, when combined together, make all the difference. I really recommend that you check out The Slight Edge, if you haven't already. Don't binge on it like I did, read just one or two chapters every day and give yourself some time to think about it. It seems that you'll have lots of time to think about yourself, so that's the perfect time to do it. This book teaches you about how improvement doesn't happen through quantum leaps, but rather by small, easy steps taken every day. It teaches you how to have faith in them. I'll let you know that I believe in your success as much as I believe in mine. It's okay to have tough days, weekends, weeks even. That's not your fault, don't compare yourself to others on that. You might find this video helpful:

Honestly, there are so many videos on Cam's YT channel that you'll probably find one suitable for almost any situation you can imagine- apathy, no excitement about life, low self esteem, consuming content all the time- you name it. Game Quitters podcast also provides plenty of useful insight. Whatever you do, remember: relapse won't fix anything. I'm looking forward to seeing how your journey will go on. Best wishes.

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DAY 34

It's been a good week, my "depression" went away. I've just enjoyed my time even when I was doing nothing, but now I have a problem: I'm too lazy to do anything important now. Need to do some self-descipline, hope next week I'll be more serious, 'caz I have a test on thursday

@mattso thx for recommending The Slight Edge, it's a good book. Just started, but I like it.

Edited by WuqingDi
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On 4/3/2019 at 8:06 PM, mattso said:

Over 2 weeks passed since your last post, how are you doing?

Hello! I was busy with college, didn't have any motivation to write anything :P. How I'm doing? Average. Nothing bad, nothing good. Same old days. Still persisting though. Stoped counting days, let me recalculate it. Thanks a lot for carrying about me!

DAY 57

Today I'm gonna challenge myself a little: there will be an update in hearthstone. Need to login to pulverize some cards. Also, I want to see if I'll want to play so badly that I'll ruin my progress in this 90 days challenge, or I'd be more conservative and just delete the game after doing my thing? I feel like the last, but let's see.

I'm doing it because I feel there is no more need in doing it for 90 days. I'm not trying to reduce it because I feel that I can't survive without games anymore or something like that, no, in fact I'm considering it because I don't like to think that I'm restiricting myself. It feels like I've put some "chains" upon myself, these thoughts are very unpleasant, so I'll try watching myself in a game client a little (even if I won't be playing). We all are learning after mistakes, so if I'm mistaken I'll learn something from it. Moreso I think I won't play any games.

After writting so far, I might say that I've sorted my mind: I will stick with 90 days. No more, no less. After 90 days I'll write my thought about all this time, about how did it feel for me, etc. It will be a very long post, I'll try to elaborate a lot (as personal feelings are placed there, I don't think a lot of people will understand my mindset/my thinking process, but it will be a good summary for myself). Hope you all will have a great week!

Edited by WuqingDi

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DAY 58

It's morning. Yesterday I've indeed entered HS client. I didn't feel anything particular: no joy, no sorrow, just a little unfamiliar feeling. Didn't want to play any games, just went directly to my collection. And then, I tryed to pulverize my cards that aren't standart anymore, but I found out that the dust they could give me is like any normal cards. I mean, I was expecting returning all my spending on them. If, for example, a rare standart card became wild, I thought the dust gained after pulverizing will be 100 dust, but it wasn't like that. 20 dust. F*** blizzard. I really hate them. Feeling a loss and a little angry, I just closed the game and deleted it immediately.

Let's keep on the challenge, I'll do it 90 days straight.

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DAY 65

It's been 2 days since I've gotten ill. Nothing serious, but still need to lie down for some time. Feels bad because I wanted to try new exercise route (let's keep it for later then). Also completed a "TO DO" for two weeks from tomorrow. I need it because recently (for maybe more than a month???) I've been "kind" to myself way too much. Now I need to get in shape, let's work harder from now on. (Hope to carry on till the end).

Good week, hope you all will have great holidays.

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DAY 77

Well, I've just calculated that only 13 days remain. Wow. Didn't think about time as it's passed so fast. Well, I don't even know that to write about. Let's just say I'm having a great time. Maybe I'll post more frequently as the days will go nearer the 90 day mark. Maybe not: it's just that my motivation to share my thoughts is wavering (I'm not very sociable person in the first place).

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5 hours ago, Sapuverell said:

What are your thoughts about your life after these 90 days? 

Hello! Speaking honestly, nothing has really changed (I'll try to be more specific later).

In the first days(around one-two weeks to be more precise) I was very motivated, I've tried new things, oh, and gaming was on my mind constantly. I tried very hard to not return back to gaming, because I thought it was the reason I've wasted so much time on "useless" things (in case you've started it thinking the same, well.. I'm gonna dissapoint you). Later (around days 15-20...25) I felt empty inside. It was hard at that time, but not for a long time, maybe between 3-6 days (don't remember exactly). Later it became more easy as thoughts about gaming were reduced in my head. The period between 30 and 60 days wasn't that hard, the only thing I think I could have done better without were youtube videos, 'caz watching too many got me reminiscing at some point around 15-20 days ago. It started with some thoughts about "gaming was fun, I miss my old days when it was really fun and not a habbit" and went to "Well, I did well for 60 some days; I'm good already; I can control myself well, what's the point wasting my time if I just want to be done with with this "challenge"?" and so on. If you ever start doubting your resolve in doing this whole thing: be aware, you might snap in some near future. You must constantly remind yourself of why you have decided to stop gaming. Sharing your thoughts will help you greatly at the start. I'd advice you to share it with your friends/family too. It'll give you more "security shackles" by motivating you to not disappoint them.

After first month it will be more easy, as the time nears 90 days, actually, I don't even think about gaming at all. I might remember about games sometimes, but from the outer factors: some news in my feed, youtube videos, etc.

Oh, and let me end for now: at the start I've said that nothing has really changed because the reason I started this whole thing is that I believed that gaming was the problem, but later I've found that problem lied in myself. Because I couldn't control myself well, because I couldn't manage myself well, etc.

So now I'm trying to do the most importang thing: changing myself, my mindset. I'm not searching for external factors, I'm searching in myself. This challenge was the start, later I'll use it as a base: I'm eating nails, too lazy, not well managing myself, etc. I'll work on these things, because, for now, gaming is the past, I have to move on.

Some advice(?): don't be too hard on yourself. Do one thing at a time. If you want to stop gaming then concentrate on it, think about why you don't want gaming anymore instead of what you'd like to play, why you've decided to stop, etc. If your head has more thoughts like these, it'll be better, in my opinion. But don't be extreme: you might get depression or snap. Also, control the content that you "eat" (yt videos, twitch, news). Try to allenate yourself little by little, don't be extreme as I've said above. As time passed, I've become more indifferent to gaming as whole. I used to follow e-Sports news, tournaments, but now I don't really care as much.

UP: Sorry if it's a little messy? It's late now and my head isn't working smoothly

Edited by WuqingDi

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DAY 85

Some days before I've decided to change my food: from eating "something that was in the fridge" I'm now conscious of what I eat. I've added more vegetables, have tryed to balance proteins, carbohydrates, etc. Now it feels like something novel, but I do feel more energetic after just some days of eating healthy food. Hope it will become even better!

Also, my lazy-syndrome seems to be ending. Now I'm going back at the track, doing that I ought to do (not entirely there, but making progress).

Well, there are only 5 days remaining till my 90 days challenge ending... I can't believe it! So much time has passed and I did change my "passion" for games into nothingness. Do I need to celebrate it? I dunno, because I don't think special about it anymore, so nothing will change after 5 days, but still, it was a great motivation at the start. It was really hard.

I'd like to advice anybody who is trying this challenge for the first time - bear with it for some time, after just the first month it will be better. But don't relax too much, you'll start really losing your passion after 2+ months, so before that be aware of possible snaps. I nearly snaped then I started thinking "I don't want to game anymore, so I can just stop this challenge and do that I want", but it was lying to myself. You HAVE TO finish ALL 90 days before you let yourself do that you want - be it re-starting playing or forgetting it for all eternity. Overall, it was a really a good experience.

Also, an advice to e-Sports fans/twitch users: don't try to reduce your time watching games content/streams COMPLETELY, try doing it over a periof of time, but don't just continue doing as you were doing before. I mean, if you just exchange all your play time with streams/games content it won't really help, will it? So, I'd advice placing some restrains on yourself.

Also, maybe it's a little too much, but don't try to find excuses if you snap. It won't help you at all.

My best regards, hope you all will do your best.

Edited by WuqingDi

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Just read through the diary as a whole, interesting experience.

I'm over two weeks in. At the start I also felt unstoppable, having so much time, doing all the things I wanted. Now I think I have a cognitive bias, because I feel overwhelmed and I think I am not getting anything done!

Before that, it'd be unthinkable for me to go work out outside, but now I just pick myself up and go. I didn't get "anything" (school stuff) done in the morning, because I got a headache and felt exhausted and I automatically feel bad for not converting EVERY SINGLE hour of gaming into something valuable, but that's impossible. I feel like I need to learn to relax without guilt, especially when I feel under the weather.

Thanks for allowing my self-reflection to come up here, have a good one!

Edited by Ikar
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DAY 90

Today is my final day, there's only 1 hour remaining before my challenge ends. I won't write anything big as I planned before, I've already shared that I felt during this challenge some time ago. I just hope everybody who will ever read it will find his own path in life, as I hope I'll find mine.

After this challenge, a lot of things changed, but I didn't notice it before today. I just went ahead taking it as granted. Now I hope to appreciate more of my efforts and to never lose myself again, because, speaking of now, I can't really relate too much to my old self who was a game addict. I can't understand why I spent so much time/mental energy on things I didn't really wanted to do.

Actually, I can't say I did a good work: my motivation to stop gaming was, in fact, a desire to not blame myself for my shortcomings. Now I can say that I've become more aware of myself, of what I need to do. It was a really, really good experience. I'm proud I didn't flinch before the difficulties and persevered till the end.

It might be a suprise, but I'll download steam again, maybe LoL too. I won't be gaming as I did before, but playing some games on saturday/sunday with friends is something I really want to do. Now I know that I can control myself and if I ever feel like an addict I'll just delete my games, that's all.

I'll do it because I think it's the better way to finally conclude an addiction - if you, forever, will run away from it - it's not a treatment, just an inner demon you will fear for all eternity. That's not the thing I'm pursuing.

Again, hope you all will find your way in life, overcome your inner demons. Good luck!

I don't think I'll ever post anything after that (not too sure), but thanks to all the people who cheered me on/helped me. Sharing your feelings, at least at the start, was the coolest decision I could have ever made. Thank you all again.

Farewell, Ivan.

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Great job on the 90!

On 5/12/2019 at 11:27 PM, WuqingDi said:

Now I hope to appreciate more of my efforts and to never lose myself again, because, speaking of now, I can't really relate too much to my old self who was a game addict. I can't understand why I spent so much time/mental energy on things I didn't really wanted to do.

I think it's important to understand why you retreated to games, as you can get addicted to virtually anything these days. Games might've been "OK" through the lens of the former you, but if that was the case, the reality back then must've been horrid in comparison.

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