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Day 17-26 10/26/2019

(Total days w/o gaming: 17; streak 0 days)

The last 9-10 days have been a roller coster. Basically, up till day 21, which was 10/21/2019, I was doing great! So that's three weeks of progress. I was on-top of my work, exercising, socializing, eating right, spending a lot less time on my computer, had a couple of tiny relapses just with binge watching gaming content, but when that was the case it was for very short amounts of time and felt very much under control. Like I said in my last post, I had some awesome stuff happen last week, and it was probably the best 5 days I've lived in a years. Some personally great thing happened that made me feel on-top of the world. All that came crashing down on the 21st and I fell into a deep depression. I don't want to talk about the specifics since it's personal, but it affected my mental state deeply. Nothing terrible happened, but just something personal that I don't want to share in this forum.

Well, it caused me to fall into a deep depression and I've just been in bed all day during the hours I didn't have to go to work, and I even cut some classes. I was literally in bed Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday night for 12+ hours a day just because I couldn't get the energy to get up or the motivation to do anything. I was totally mentally defeated. I skipped all my classes on Thursday, but went to my therapy session, which helped a lot! I felt 10x better after talking with my therapist, but it didn't get me back to where I needed. It's taken me till now to say I'll put down the gaming videos and streams so I can get back to a healthy life. Every time I relapse like this, its even more of a reminder that I just can't balance my life with gaming. At some point during my detox, maybe like a month in I somehow convince myself that I can probably go back to gaming and live a balanced life. Absolutely not and every relapse is undeniable proof of that. I do nothing with my life when I'm gaming.

One thing I've learned, or at-least learned is a bigger deal than I used to think it was, is how I need to be ok with set backs. I've said this in previous posts, but I'm a very momentum driven person. I feel like I'm always operating at extremes. Between day 1-21 before falling into a huge rut, I was managing all my time, making sure I was optimizing almost all aspect of my life, and was operating what felt near 90-100%. The moment I fell into my rut, a couple of thing went south in my life and I let myself go from that 90% level of operation to basically 0%-5%. I always let even the smaller thing in my life drag down every aspect of my life. I've reminded myself how terribly bad this is for me since of course I can't always operate between 90-100%. I will eventually burn out. But it just seems like every time everything isn't going as how I planned, nothing feels like it can go as planned. I can't let this be the case or I'll never be able to improve myself. I need to be ok with operating between 50-70%, and when bad things happen I need to be ok with operating at a lower rate than that, and not feel like I need to start from square one again.

That being said, I don't know how everyone else feels, but I have my first and only piece of criticism of the way the detox in GQ works. I know the goal is supposed to be to get a 90 day gaming free streak, but I just haven't been able to do it since I started trying in June (or July??? can't remember when I began). I've relapsed, and since I need to do a, "reset" each time I relapse, it makes me feel like I'm starting back at square one. I don't know if this is just me and my mentality, but that the mind set I feel like it reinforces.

I've realized my goal isn't to, "reset" or, "start over" every time I have a relapse, since I will have many more to come. I think the most important thing for me personally is when I do relapse, not to let it bring me down to such lows each time so I can get back on my feet quicker and start again where I left off. I've been feeling like these relapses drag me back down from a high place down to zero, but I can't keep feeling that way. I need to learn to pick myself up even when times are bad and minimize the effects of depressive episodes or stressful times in my life. I keep letting them disrupting the flow of my life and that's the worst thing I can let happen to me.

That being said, the last depressive episode I had was about 2 months ago and it lasted for about 3 weeks. This time around, its been 6 days and I'm kindof back on my feet. I'm still feeling pretty depressed and not ready to put down the gaming content, but I know the sooner I put it down the faster it means I'll get back to where I was in my journey. I'm just rambling now.

Let me know if any of yall feel this way at all or understand what I'm saying haha.

Tldr; I had a great 3 weeks, fell into a rut for the last week and binge watched a lot of gaming content. I'm back at it, but still feel a little bummed. I think it's more important to prioritize recovering from slumps quicker rather than maintaining longer streaks of productivity.

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Day 0 - 10/27/2019

Never mind. I've fallen into way too big of a slump to allow myself to continue the day counter. I want to do this right. Back to day 0, resetting my counter, but I'm going to try to pick up where I left off in terms of productivity and activity. My mentality is weak at the moment and I still feel quite depressed, but I'll try to figure something out.

I've got a long and important week ahead of me and I really need to pick myself up if I want to get through it. I'm going to try my best, but my head really isn't in the right place.

Mannn, it might sound strange, but I'm literally tired of being depressed. I fall into these slumps so much and usually when I'm depressed, I'm just depressed. But right now it this mixture between depression from feeling that way and recognizing this pattern I feel like I can't escape and just feeling disgusted with myself, which makes me upset.

I watched a Jim Jeffries stand-up special the other day where he talked about how he was depressed through his 20's and 30's... Now that I've recognized and acknowledged my depression problems, I really want to work on it and fix it. I've began seeing a therapist and I think it's helping, but I just want this to go away faster. I guess it's not going to go away instantly or perhaps even ever, but I need to do more to work on my mental health. I don't know... Just feeling lost with answers at the moment. I'm just going to continue to do this journal and do what I know is right for me and hope I stick to it. I don't really know what else I'm supposed to do.

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Alight... Day 0 - 11/3/2019

I need to relabel my addiction. Its really an internet addiction more than a gaming addiction. Even when I successfully cut gaming out of my life, I still spend a tremendous amount of time browsing the internet for other things. I got a locker at my university about a month ago and left my locker in there for about 5 days, and those were the most well spent 5 days I had in a very long time.

My new goal is just one. Leave my laptop in my locker after work or class. NEVER bring my laptop home. I do not have a desktop.

I want to live by that one goal and see how things change. I'm not gonna promise anything else to myself other than that. Lets see how this goes. I'll try to post as much as possible, but it most likely will not be daily.

Here it goes again. Lets see how my detox goes this time around.

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Gonna take a break from GQ for a while. It's done a lot for me, but I still can't quite seem to get it together. Gonna try private journaling for a long time and see how that works for me. About to start working on implementing better life habits with my therapist, so it's not like I'm giving up on self improvement. It's always on my mind and I'm still pursuing it, but these forums aren't working for me and it's been about about 5 months since I've started making posts. Thanks for all the support and help. I think I'll be back sometime don't know when. I just need to try a different approach to all this. Best of luck to all.

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  • 1 month later...

Day 1 - 1/1/2020

Just deleted all my games and blocked twitch and the youtube gaming channels I am hooked to. Gonna do another detox, starting at 1 week. I know 3 months is the thing here, but I've been through this enough times to know what I need to aim for. 1 week first and I'll extend it as far as possible.

I've been depressed for as long as I can remember, and have been in an extra bad slump for the past few weeks. Been binge playing League and Starcraft, but I just deleted them again. This is a very important year for me since its my last year in college and I want to finish strong.

I haven't seen my therapist in about a month since I was in too much of a slump to even want to go. Finally got in contact to make another appointment. At our last discussion, I finally suggested I'm interested in taking anti-depressants and he highly recommended me talking to a psychiatrist to get a prescription. I've been against the use of anti-depressants for my whole life mainly because my parents were very much against the use of them as well, but also because of what other mentors and friends have said. I recently talk to a family member who I didn't even know took them a few years back and heard it basically saved her life. My therapist has convinced me that the stigma attached to the user of anti-depressants is incredibly misleading and now I really want to try it and think it might be what will turn my life around. However, I know real change has to start with me, so I want to do another detox. I know the anti-depressants alone wont solve the underlying issue.

My goal for the year is just one thing. To confront my depression and conquer it. I know its easier said than done and know it will take a while to accomplish, but I really want to confront this problem I've had forever and face it. I've spent too much time numbing it away. I know things will get worse before they get better, but I'm finally ready to face it head on.

Here's to a great 2020!

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  • 1 month later...

Day 1 - 2/2/2020

I will not game today. That includes playing and consuming gaming content.

I made my first post sometime in July 2019 and I've yet to complete a detox. I think I got 40+ days on my first detox, but never made it nearly as close ever again. Did multiple detoxes since and I think my longest streak was a little shy of 2 weeks. Although I've repeatedly failed in this aspect, I have succeeded in others.

I've began seeing a therapist for my depression. I've opened up to some friends and family members about my depression problems. That's a huge deal for me considering how emotionally closed off I am as a person. I've began taking anti-depressants. When I cave and play video games, I don't get nearly as addicted as I used to and have an easier time putting them down. I've made new friends.

The issue, which has always been my demon from the start, is consuming gaming content. Watching gaming on twitch, youtube, and twitter. It's ruining my life. Every time I remove those things from my life, my life immediately gets better. But there's always a moment where I give in and consume endless hours of it again.

For me to have the life I want, it has got to go. I also need to maintain a good morning schedule of waking up relatively early (which mean sleeping at a consistent, earlier time at night), regular exercise, eating right, and meditating. When I've got those things going, my life is just better. Regardless, the gaming has got to go.

I'll begin a 30 day detox starting now.

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What makes you think that you have in any way failed regarding detoxes? How is not gaming for 30 days or even 10 days a failure? It is a lot better than gaming for 30 or 10 days. It really isn't about the number of days you "reached" it is just about the process. And you are willing to start it. Fall in love with this process. You are not a failure, if in the middle of it you cave in. The result is really not important. It is the way towards it. This is, where you can define, who the new version of you is going to be. Who do you want to be? What new hobbies or inspiring things do you want to try out? This is not about giving up something, but finding something new and exciting. You already said that your life immediately gets better. That is a sign. You are only inches away of breaking through to your new you. It will be so great that you never will look back. I can't wait to see, who your new version will be. 🙂 

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Day 1 - 2/8/2020

I will not game today.

Slipped up. Played some games, watched a lot of content. I just deactivated my league account, blocked twitch, twitter, and the download site for league on a site blocker chrome extension. Looking back on my posts, I see how much I've slipped up. I haven't had even a semi-successful detox since October, but I'm back on my feet and that's what is important. Even if I slip up, I will come straight back here. I will do my best.

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Day 2 - 2/8/2020

Reset my detox yesterday. I didn't just delete league off my computer yesterday, but literally deactivated my account, which felt amazing. Much needed step. I kept on re downloading the game on weekends when I had some time, so deleting it didn't really do anything good for me.

Already this morning I had to fight the urge to watch gaming content. One of my worst habits on days I have off is waking up and immediately opening up my laptop while I'm in bed and watching youtube videos, twitch streams, or check to see what's going on over twitter (gaming pages). I need to take a moment to thing about how I feel every time I do that after an hour or two of wasted time in the morning to have the control not to do it.

Instead of playing games alone last night, I went out to go see some friends so that was nice. Today I've gotta get my shit together and get a ton of schoolwork done.


Got a ton a work done so I'm feeling pretty good. Had a ton of cravings today, but I haven't given in. Haven't played any games, haven't spent time on twitch or twitter, definitely spent some time on youtube, but watching through other nonsense.

The hardest thing for me at the moment is figuring out how to relax at the end of the day before I sleep. I feel oddly empty if I don't lie down in bed for the last atleast 30 minutes of my day watching gaming content on youtube or streams on twitch. It's what I've done for so long, I don't know what to replace it with. Nothing quite winds me down like that does. It had this effect where it's just entertaining enough that my brain feels its receiving dopamine, but I could simultaneously shut off my mind and just let it go numb as I fade off to sleep... I don't know if that makes any sense. What I'm saying is pretty counter intuitive, but that really is precisely what it does for me.

I wish even watching regular TV would do this for me, but it doesn't really do the trick anymore. It's not engaging enough. I usually need to make an effort to stay engaged, which doesn't allow my mind let itself go numb and wear off to sleep. I guess that's a better way to put what watching gaming content does for me. It's engaging enough that I don't need to put any effort into paying attention or thinking, letting my brain relax go numb, and eventually fade to sleep.

Come to think of it, its pretty disturbing how much dopamine gaming produces... So much that regular TV that I used to love to watch all day now doesn't provide the stimuli my brain desires... Maybe that detox will help revert that. That's the hope.

To anyone reading this, what non-gaming activity do you do now before going to bed to let your mind wind down? Have you found anything that does that trick like gaming used to?

Edited by RB1
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