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Alexanderle

Trust the process...

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1 hour ago, Amphibian220 said:

I’m sure you met people in your life that it was hard to connect with. Are they then entitled to feel rejected?

Never thought about that like this before. The problem is that often I blame myself for that. Something, which surely should stop.

1 hour ago, Amphibian220 said:

We can explore mutual interests, opportunities, sport, advice. The strongest one I think is a common great goal. 

I slowly are starting to understand that. I always hated smalltalk for instance, but the idea of smalltalk at the end of the day is to find commonalities.

 

1 hour ago, Amphibian220 said:

So none of us can get “rejected” by our peers. This threat just doesn’t exist.

I see, what you are trying to say. And you are right. But the problem is that this kind of threat still feels real. People with certain anxieties still feel these things, like if they were really existing. That makes it difficult to really get rid of the thought carussell.

51 minutes ago, Icandothis said:

You define your life. 
 

Whatever someone thinks about you is a reflection of them and not you. 
 

Rejection is only a story the ego comes up with.

Those are really beautiful words. And I also agree with that. I think a problem is also that despite the ego is just creating these illusions or stories, it also tries to find evidence for them. Like someone is not talking to me, I start to relate it to myself. Someone is making a mean comment (never really happened recently), I have another piece of evidence. So right now, I am starting or trying to look out for counter evidence.

 

But thank you both. Very useful advices.

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On 2/28/2020 at 5:38 PM, Alexanderle said:

I feel that a new level of momentum is coming. I had a very good and effective day. I woke up early, I did my full morning routine and started to work for university. I am thinking about, what James Clear says about Pregame Routines (https://jamesclear.com/how-to-get-motivated). I used some things like cleaning my desk, drinking a glass of water and having my coffee ready as well as turning my phone and all distractions off. Also activating my distraction block program for the browser. This worked quite well.

I also started to create a huge list of goals, I want to achive and a list of "identities", which I want to become eventually. Let's see what happens with that. Like usual, I let those things develop.

Regarding my social life, I generally feel that I get a kind of necessity. The feeling that, if I don't get this right, why even bother with anything? That is not something bad, as it also worked for changes in my diet. So maybe this necessity and negativity, paired with my goals, could create even more momentum. Like I always say: I will never go back again. Only forward. Oh, I also resisted porn to today. So overall, it was one of the better days this year. No I will go to bed. I feel that going to bed a little earlier helps extremely. So good night world. Tomorrow, I will turn into a beast I feel. And if not, I will be a sweet puppy. xD

That's great. Careful creating too many goals and identities, but other than that just be patient with them, appreciate them, and enjoy the ability to practice them. 

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5 hours ago, BooksandTrees said:

That's great. Careful creating too many goals and identities, but other than that just be patient with them, appreciate them, and enjoy the ability to practice them. 

You are right. I should not overwhelm myself with that. I sometimes try to do too much at once.

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First of all: Thank you everyone in this forum. You are all an inspiration to me. Glad you exist!

Second: There is a lot of confusing here. The text down below was just therapeutic writing. Just writing it down as it appears in my head. Might contain spelling errors etc. But I don't really care this time. Was important for me to get things out of my head. xD

Third: Today I feel like writing down my accomplishments. I am usually against that, since I focus on the process and not results. But sometimes it just feels good to do that. First time on this forum, since I tried that:

This is day 81, since I officially quit Steam and all those games. Did not realize that I am close to 90 days. That is nice.

This is day 88?, since I started my grooming and morning routine. Ever stuck to it in some way.

This is day 116, since I started to fight procrastination.

This is day 396, since I have eaten chips, sweets, drank cola or related stuff and overall ate sweets. Only very small exceptions, like a piece of birthday cake once or twice. I have lost more than 33 pounds since then. I can't even remember the last time, I have eaten ice cream. Still remember the taste though. ^^ 

This is day 460?, since around the time, where I was at my lowest point and wanted to finally change my life to the better. I would say I am successful.

This is day 5, since I last watched porn. 

This is day 1, since I seriously am into bodybuilding. It becomes a mission for me. Not crazy, but athletic.

This is day 1, since I decided that getting a social life is as important for me as my nutrition. I want this so bad. Fuck!

That being said, lets start with my therapeutic writing:

What can I tell? The day has been very interesting in many regards. I was awake before my alarm clock started. I was motivated, followed my normal routine and was productive. I went to the gym before my lecture, where I was once again sitting alone. Could not connect with anyone. It does suck. I feel controlled by myself. I hate nothing more like that. I beat this feeling of being controlled in almost in every area of my life. But out of all of them that is the most important one. A female student I would sometimes sit next to, did not ask me to record the lecture with her dictaphone like usual, when she had another lecture parallel to that, but seemingly another student. I felt insulted by that. It was probably because I was talking too much with another person the last time and the quality of the lecture was not that good. But she could have told me that. So know I don't care anymore. I kinda don't like her anymore. Just like that. I still have a very strict black and white thinking, when it comes to that. It is in a certain way something like rejection. I hate that. xD Besides that, this time, it was way better in the lecture, because I was doing sport before. This pushed me and I was not as nervous. Maybe I cultivate doing sport before that. If it helps me to survive this, why not. In the middle of the lecture I also had some kind of epiphany that I constantly criticise myself and tell to me that I am not good enough or that there is something wrong with me. I then realized that is a lie. Kinda a good moment, but only for a short time. I want to focus on that and cultivate it.

Besides the lecture, I am now really interested in working out. This really pushes me. Also language learning is going well. But my drawing is on a little stagnation, even though I made unbelievable progress. So that is not a problem. Later that day, I watched a Ted Talk about addiction. It was veeery fascinating, what the guy said. I shared it in the forum in a thread. I can really recommend it. It made me realize a couple of things: Gaming, porn, eating, procrastination - it is all something that happens due to my loneliness and isolation. I always rejected other people and pushed them away from me. Always! As a little kid, in kindergarden, in school - even though at the same time, I wanted nothing more than to connect with them. I always felt as some kind of freak. It is logical to look for release. It is logical to look for something that makes me feel better. Why I am like this? I have no idea. My older sister a couple of weeks said that my parents were to protective and were not integrating me appropriately with equally old kids when I was young. Could be that this is the case. I always have the feel to not connect. Everything is hard for me. Except to ofc a couple of people, which is a little light in the darkness. I would do everything for them. And I know, I can also rely on them. Maybe I should talk about this stuff with someone else. I feel that I could explode right now. I feel that I could cry.

One the one hand, there is my progress and I feel I am constantly climbing the mountain. But on the other hand I am now at a point, where I feel stuck a bit. I know that it is only a very small step and my probably make the biggest progress in my entire life. Therefore, regardless of a little bit of some discouraging feelings right now, I will continue. I am tired. But also my momentum is very high. But I still feel like a failure, even though I am not a failure. It is more like helplessnes. There are so many things, I want do in some situation, BUT I AM NOT DOING THEM. How can human beings be so different? Shouldn't it be normal for me to just do those things? Why does a person like me seemingly need some guidelines, rules, routines and basically everything in a very analytical, technical way? Why can't it all be more spontaneous? I am more a maschine, which constantly gets repaired than a human being.

Alright, now I watch a movie. I just feel like it. Avoid my emotions a bit. I am like a time bomb. Not in a negative sense. It just feels like too much things in my head. I had to get them out in this journal. At the beginning of joining GQ, I was doubtful with journaling, but this shit is so helpful

I was looking again for sport associations, which I think are interesting to join. Still the money is some issue. I don't like to spend that much. And I am also not sure, which association. But I have and want to join one of them. I need some kind of social interactions. Usually, gaming via discord with other people was sufficient. But I am not really doing this anymore. It is crazy that I am still not craving for video games. But I am craving more for certain foods and porn. But even there, everything is fine. I am like a little cyborg with some bugs. ^^ 

If you are still reading up to this point, you are crazy. 😛 But also thanks and watch that Ted Talk. It was reallly valuable for me and my process. Made me realize something, what I have to do and where I am right now. Spoiler: I am a little rat in an experiment, which used to drink cocaine water all the time. But I found some normal water in my cage as well. And I felt a lot better because of that. Since my journey started, I found more and more things, which I can do in that cage. Occasionally, a little sip of water here and there, but I keep finding more and more. The biggest struggle now is that all those things are still not enough. I am looking for other rats. I am still alone in that cage. At least I feel like it, even though it is not completely true. 

Ok, now I will go to bed. Everything is out. It feels better. But I am now really tired man.

 

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Man, from what I see, you are a master of your time. You dont want to waste time. But you have kept repeating that you want your social interactions to be on a new level. You want insecurity to be gone away forever. You want people to come near you and take interest, including most beautiful women at your university. How do you interest someone like this? I always wondered during my academic stage- is this just a thing from movies or can you really be like that?

I still have no clue. But women notice you when you win. I scored the best time at an obstacle course set up by the British territorial army and my workmates were all talking to mr that day.

Perhaps you are overthinking it just as I was? I dont like that romance faded away after marriage. Before marriage I enjoyed the few conversations I had with girls (there is so much novelty and pleasant feelings involved) Once I bought a box of chocolates for a girl’s birthday in my group and she hugged me out of happiness- man it was empowering for a guy with a gaming addiction. She may just let me feel and hear myself a little more that day. 

With a wife, she gets happy to receive gifts, but you don’t feel as excited anymore. 

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On 3/3/2020 at 5:22 PM, Alexanderle said:

First of all: Thank you everyone in this forum. You are all an inspiration to me. Glad you exist!

Second: There is a lot of confusing here. The text down below was just therapeutic writing. Just writing it down as it appears in my head. Might contain spelling errors etc. But I don't really care this time. Was important for me to get things out of my head. xD

Third: Today I feel like writing down my accomplishments. I am usually against that, since I focus on the process and not results. But sometimes it just feels good to do that. First time on this forum, since I tried that:

This is day 81, since I officially quit Steam and all those games. Did not realize that I am close to 90 days. That is nice.

This is day 88?, since I started my grooming and morning routine. Ever stuck to it in some way.

This is day 116, since I started to fight procrastination.

This is day 396, since I have eaten chips, sweets, drank cola or related stuff and overall ate sweets. Only very small exceptions, like a piece of birthday cake once or twice. I have lost more than 33 pounds since then. I can't even remember the last time, I have eaten ice cream. Still remember the taste though. ^^ 

This is day 460?, since around the time, where I was at my lowest point and wanted to finally change my life to the better. I would say I am successful.

This is day 5, since I last watched porn. 

This is day 1, since I seriously am into bodybuilding. It becomes a mission for me. Not crazy, but athletic.

This is day 1, since I decided that getting a social life is as important for me as my nutrition. I want this so bad. Fuck!

That being said, lets start with my therapeutic writing:

What can I tell? The day has been very interesting in many regards. I was awake before my alarm clock started. I was motivated, followed my normal routine and was productive. I went to the gym before my lecture, where I was once again sitting alone. Could not connect with anyone. It does suck. I feel controlled by myself. I hate nothing more like that. I beat this feeling of being controlled in almost in every area of my life. But out of all of them that is the most important one. A female student I would sometimes sit next to, did not ask me to record the lecture with her dictaphone like usual, when she had another lecture parallel to that, but seemingly another student. I felt insulted by that. It was probably because I was talking too much with another person the last time and the quality of the lecture was not that good. But she could have told me that. So know I don't care anymore. I kinda don't like her anymore. Just like that. I still have a very strict black and white thinking, when it comes to that. It is in a certain way something like rejection. I hate that. xD Besides that, this time, it was way better in the lecture, because I was doing sport before. This pushed me and I was not as nervous. Maybe I cultivate doing sport before that. If it helps me to survive this, why not. In the middle of the lecture I also had some kind of epiphany that I constantly criticise myself and tell to me that I am not good enough or that there is something wrong with me. I then realized that is a lie. Kinda a good moment, but only for a short time. I want to focus on that and cultivate it.

Besides the lecture, I am now really interested in working out. This really pushes me. Also language learning is going well. But my drawing is on a little stagnation, even though I made unbelievable progress. So that is not a problem. Later that day, I watched a Ted Talk about addiction. It was veeery fascinating, what the guy said. I shared it in the forum in a thread. I can really recommend it. It made me realize a couple of things: Gaming, porn, eating, procrastination - it is all something that happens due to my loneliness and isolation. I always rejected other people and pushed them away from me. Always! As a little kid, in kindergarden, in school - even though at the same time, I wanted nothing more than to connect with them. I always felt as some kind of freak. It is logical to look for release. It is logical to look for something that makes me feel better. Why I am like this? I have no idea. My older sister a couple of weeks said that my parents were to protective and were not integrating me appropriately with equally old kids when I was young. Could be that this is the case. I always have the feel to not connect. Everything is hard for me. Except to ofc a couple of people, which is a little light in the darkness. I would do everything for them. And I know, I can also rely on them. Maybe I should talk about this stuff with someone else. I feel that I could explode right now. I feel that I could cry.

One the one hand, there is my progress and I feel I am constantly climbing the mountain. But on the other hand I am now at a point, where I feel stuck a bit. I know that it is only a very small step and my probably make the biggest progress in my entire life. Therefore, regardless of a little bit of some discouraging feelings right now, I will continue. I am tired. But also my momentum is very high. But I still feel like a failure, even though I am not a failure. It is more like helplessnes. There are so many things, I want do in some situation, BUT I AM NOT DOING THEM. How can human beings be so different? Shouldn't it be normal for me to just do those things? Why does a person like me seemingly need some guidelines, rules, routines and basically everything in a very analytical, technical way? Why can't it all be more spontaneous? I am more a maschine, which constantly gets repaired than a human being.

Alright, now I watch a movie. I just feel like it. Avoid my emotions a bit. I am like a time bomb. Not in a negative sense. It just feels like too much things in my head. I had to get them out in this journal. At the beginning of joining GQ, I was doubtful with journaling, but this shit is so helpful

I was looking again for sport associations, which I think are interesting to join. Still the money is some issue. I don't like to spend that much. And I am also not sure, which association. But I have and want to join one of them. I need some kind of social interactions. Usually, gaming via discord with other people was sufficient. But I am not really doing this anymore. It is crazy that I am still not craving for video games. But I am craving more for certain foods and porn. But even there, everything is fine. I am like a little cyborg with some bugs. ^^ 

If you are still reading up to this point, you are crazy. 😛 But also thanks and watch that Ted Talk. It was reallly valuable for me and my process. Made me realize something, what I have to do and where I am right now. Spoiler: I am a little rat in an experiment, which used to drink cocaine water all the time. But I found some normal water in my cage as well. And I felt a lot better because of that. Since my journey started, I found more and more things, which I can do in that cage. Occasionally, a little sip of water here and there, but I keep finding more and more. The biggest struggle now is that all those things are still not enough. I am looking for other rats. I am still alone in that cage. At least I feel like it, even though it is not completely true. 

Ok, now I will go to bed. Everything is out. It feels better. But I am now really tired man.

 

Glad you're here. You contribute to so many posts and make great efforts to help others as well as analyze yourself in a fair way. It's great to see. I'm happy you've lost weight and are RECOGNIZING the changes you've been making over the past year or so. Good on you for noticing.

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It is going quite amazing for me. Drawing is a little bit in the background right now. I am way more obsessed with my diet and working out. Language learning is something is still do here and then. But that is fine. Both those things I still do on a regular basis. Right now, my bachelor thesis needs a lot of attention. Regarding social stuff, it is also ok. On thursday, I had people to talk to, so that was acceptable. Won't solve my problem for a different scenario, but I am getting there. xD
I am still very close to join some association at campus. But I am still not doing it right now. Have to make this jump I guess. I need to start living, like I want.

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So, what is going on in my life. Not really much to say. Attending lectures is going alright. The more I do it, the less anxiety I feel. It really is like Jordan Peterson said in a lecture: It is not that the situation becomes less "dangerous" it is you becoming stronger. I am now at this point, where I am not avoiding this shit anymore. I become stronger. And I will continue to become stronger. I had a recent struggle with procrastination, but that is something, I am always able to overcome eventually. The feeling in my stomach to keep rolling is so much stronger. I am usually far ahead of my "competition". Not very motivated to do duolingo right now, but I am watching series in Dutch that is also helping. 

My biggest improvements are in regards to my fitness: I am getting so much stronger. My whole diet is now focused on getting good stuff in my stomach. GIve me one more year and I will be a considerable beast. This makes me so proud. I could do sport every single day. Just my image in the mirror in the evening is, what gives me my confidence. And I am continue to feed my mental strength with it. I am able to also use the power for other areas in my life, so I can be happy with that.

Yeah, Corona sucks a bit. Makes it harder for me to get participants for my bachelor thesis. I hope, this is not causing serious issues in the next months. Have to discuss this with my supervisor.

That would be all. Not many news. Therefore, no need for me to right every single day in this journey. But I feel that the next couple of months will be an important turning point in my life. The feeling in my stomach to keep going is getting stronger and stronger. Something like: "Come on man, let's keep going. Don't stay, were you are." So I won't.

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 Alexanderle

You haven’t lied to yourself the last couple weeks. Keep upping the game, be blessed. A fight means some danger, but it means energy and excitement.

Without giving out sensitive info, how satisfied are you with your finances?

Are you supporting yourself already, or are you still dependent on your family. Are you already looking for profitable opportunities?

Edited by Amphibian220

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9 hours ago, Alexanderle said:

So, what is going on in my life. Not really much to say. Attending lectures is going alright. The more I do it, the less anxiety I feel. It really is like Jordan Peterson said in a lecture: It is not that the situation becomes less "dangerous" it is you becoming stronger.

Peterson's lectures were very important at the beginning of my detox. It's true that he "only" puts the ideas of great philosophers into modern language, but I am of the opinion that most of how should one go about their lives in a good way is out there anyway.

9 hours ago, Alexanderle said:

Just my image in the mirror in the evening is, what gives me my confidence. And I am continue to feed my mental strength with it. I am able to also use the power for other areas in my life, so I can be happy with that.

I started noticing this with myself as well. I am working out consistently for 10 weeks and I look better than before. I guess men can care about how they look as well! 😄

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Hey, thanks for the diet advice. I already avoid eating sugar. Which has helped a lot, I'm just trying to get down those last few pounds to get really lean. I eat bread, but it's whole wheat the Ezekiel bread from Trader Joe's. That's cool you're getting a lot stronger. That'll show in your physique too I'm sure. I would workout at home for the corona virus, but my shoulder's don't do well with overhead press so I need the gym dumbbells and chair. Are you still working out at the gym?

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Hey @Erik2.0 you are already like ten steps ahead of most people. I think that overall having too much calories is the main reason for stagnation. So I would say: Just continue, what you are doing. Focus on the stuff that is good for you: Vegetables, good meat, eggs and whatever. I am barely eating any bread, but when it comes down to carbohydrate sources there are obviously differences. I am always trying, when I have a desire for that stuff to go towards better alternatives. But if you just keep going and are working out, you will reach your goal. I mean, it took me a couple of months to get there. It was very helpful to never set a fixed point in time, where I wanted to have something achived. Just keep going and you will get there. It is really about who you think you are, your mindset etc.

Regarding working out: I invested in a gym chair and adjustable dumbbells, so I can always get a nice workout done. I would also like to have a pullbar, but I am worried to break my appartment, so I avoid that. xD

But besides that, you can always get a nice workout in without any stuff. I especially love the strong by zumba workouts, because those music synced workouts are just fun! Nothing comparable with zumba, really good stuff! You should check it out. The channel "popsugar fitness" has a couple of them. I sometimes don't really bother that much about the specific workout, what to do etc. I just do what I feel like.  I don't try to win a bodybuilding contest, I just want to look good and lean. I think a slightly visible sixpack is already perfect. Those bodybuilding monkeys are ridiculous. ^^ When I am not feeling well for weights, I do one of those workouts. There are literally thousands of them in the internet. I also go to them in real life at campus, but that is not an option right now. Just keep moving and have fun. And it really does not matter, whether you reach your goal to be lean next week or next year. I am paying more attention to do it all in a fashion that I will be able to still do it in 30 years. Long time investment.

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Some time ago, I made a list of goals, with everything I wanted to do. The interesting thing is that after doing that, I was not more efficient or more motivated. I just realized minutes ago that ever since that moment I am struggling a bit. This is interesting, because I was expecting to function even better. I was hearing it in a video that I should make this list with all my goals, what I would like to do. I even set dates, when I wanted to have something achieved. I came to realize that this is bullshit. The only thing it creates, is tension, because you are really trying, not do fail and put pressure on yourself. When I look back at my diet, I never did something like that. I never did something like: "In three months I have lost x pounds of fat". Never! Instead, I just did good stuff and results came. I also never paid attention to something like: "I will not game for 30 days". It just happened, because I focused on something else instead. So why trying it right now for painting and language learning for example? That does not make sense; it actually took the fun away a bit. So, I deleted the list and started to do some research. This article in particular is really interesting regarding goal setting, having a different perspectives that most coaches that goal setting can hurt you. 

Here it is: https://breakingmuscle.com/fitness/why-successful-people-dont-set-goals-and-you-shouldnt-either

What I think is so interesting is that most successful people according to the author don't set goals. The reason: "Defining goals defines your limitations." Especially for stuff like diet or gaming, a long term goal can be tough as a motivation. So the article also pointed out that a why is crucial.

Why am I doing it? Realistically, I want to learn to draw, because I like to show other people my skill with it. I am not really doing it for myself. I am also learning those languages in order to connect better with other people and try to impress them. So, while this is not a negative thing and quite comparable with my motivations for weight loss (impress women etc.) that particular motivation was way deeper. For instance, I lost weight to feel better, I did it to get confident, I did it to like myself, to look in the mirror and enjoy, what I see. I did it to get momentum, which turned out to be the best decision of my life. So even though I don't like to admit it: Doing something like painting or language learning just to impress people is not enough. Having goals and clear "how to do"-  plans are also not enough. A good "why" is the most important thing.

Ever since I focused too much on goalsetting, I made the situation a lot worse for myself. I mean, all this talk about the process and identity, yet I made a goal list. xD The article does not say that goals are a bad thing per se. But there is a difference between a goal that creates pressure and points out possible limitations (the goal of 30 pushups might make to feel good, even though you could still do 10 more) and continous improvement. This is the important point of the article: The Japanese have a term for that: Kaizen.


So I will stop now setting unrealistic goals to become a master painter in one month or learn a language in half a year. Instead I just have the goal to keep improving. And I have to focus more on the "why". This is, where the change really starts. 

Maybe, I can also relate this to my social life? What is it that I really want? Why do I want it? So something to ponder for the next days. This is about finding activities, which have a meaning to be. Just doing something, which involves other people is not enough. I need a strong "why". Otherwise, I will not leave the house. Ofc, right now there is a big reason to not leave the house as much. But, this will not be the case for ever.

 

Lastly a little quote from on of the articles, which really nails it:

"In fitness, the parallel is those that are running towards something versus those that are running from something. The former has a 'why,' the latter is just looking for a way out." (https://breakingmuscle.com/fitness/how-to-is-pointless-without-why)

 

Edited by Alexanderle
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13 hours ago, Alexanderle said:

Some time ago, I made a list of goals, with everything I wanted to do. The interesting thing is that after doing that, I was not more efficient or more motivated. I just realized minutes ago that ever since that moment I am struggling a bit. This is interesting, because I was expecting to function even better. I was hearing it in a video that I should make this list with all my goals, what I would like to do. I even set dates, when I wanted to have something achieved. I came to realize that this is bullshit. The only thing it creates, is tension, because you are really trying, not do fail and put pressure on yourself. When I look back at my diet, I never did something like that. I never did something like: "In three months I have lost x pounds of fat". Never! Instead, I just did good stuff and results came. I also never paid attention to something like: "I will not game for 30 days". It just happened, because I focused on something else instead. So why trying it right now for painting and language learning for example? That does not make sense; it actually took the fun away a bit. So, I deleted the list and started to do some research. This article in particular is really interesting regarding goal setting, having a different perspectives that most coaches that goal setting can hurt you. 

I think there are two good ideas that go with this. First one is to honestly watch yourself, just writing down what you did. Binged on a series for three hours? Good. Worked out really hard for an hour? Good. That way you know where you're at. The second one is that you are already doing what you want at any given moment. There is just the argument whether you are doing it in the best possible way known to you, because your e.g. need for accomplishment can be fulfilled in an infinity of ways.

13 hours ago, Alexanderle said:

Why am I doing it? Realistically, I want to learn to draw, because I like to show other people my skill with it. I am not really doing it for myself. I am also learning those languages in order to connect better with other people and try to impress them. So, while this is not a negative thing and quite comparable with my motivations for weight loss (impress women etc.) that particular motivation was way deeper. For instance, I lost weight to feel better, I did it to get confident, I did it to like myself, to look in the mirror and enjoy, what I see. I did it to get momentum, which turned out to be the best decision of my life. So even though I don't like to admit it: Doing something like painting or language learning just to impress people is not enough. Having goals and clear "how to do"-  plans are also not enough. A good "why" is the most important thing.

I think any motivation to get you started is a good one, whether you e.g. work out to genuinely try to improve your health or to "just" impress girls. It's hard to tell what your majority motivation is before you actually get to the point where it's no longer valid. So maybe you find a girl and you quit working out. The bad news is afterwards you played a trick on her, because a chunk of you she fell for is not there anymore. I'd argue the best way to avert that is to discipline oneself go to the gym every day regardless, but I understand if everybody doesn't have time to do that 😄

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@Ikar you are one smart dude my man. I really agree with everything you said. Regarding the gym motivation, I think it is more than just impressing others. The feeling of accomplishing something. Fighting through a workout. The fun I have, while doing it. The look in the mirror. The energy level. All these things are so rewarding, I guess I would still do it with a girl on my site. And what you said that trying to blend the girl with an image of you, which is not real, will never work. So in the end, a motivation that has many different aspects is something that keeps us going. Gaming has many of these motivational aspects as well: Social, rewards, fun, gratification, adrenalin etc. Guess that makes it so hard to resist. ^^

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Today was a beautiful morning full of realizations. I finally woke up again at 5. But when trying to sleep at night, it really was a struggle. I think I was fighting with myself for like one hour to finally sleep. I don't know, why it was so hard this time. Maybe, because today is my birthday. And I hate my birthdays. They show me very clearly, who shows up and who calls me. There are certain people, I know will call me and then there is the annoying rest of the pack, who only calls me, because they get remembered by some instance like facebook. But I deleted facebook a while back. I don't want to hear to congratulations, who never talk to you but then give you all these nice words, just because they got reminded. Also do me a favor and don't congratulate me. It hate it even more, when I get wishes, because I tell people. This struggle with birthdays goes on ever since. 

So why was it still a beautiful morning? Because I finally had my complete morning routine back. Waking up was easy again. So, I put on some nice music, go through my daily routine and around 6 I sit in front of the pc, watch some series in spanish or dutch and then go to work. It feels so good. So amazing. You have to realize that I did not even need an alarm clock. I was just awake at 5. This is so great that I could burst out of excitement. Since I finally let go off my exhaustive list of a thousand goals , I feel enourmous relieve. I only have a couple of things to focus on. My most deepest desire in this world, nothing comes even close, is to be in charge of myself. Not feeling controlled by substances, other people or basically my life. When I want to make a decision, I want to make it, because I feel that this is now my decision, not because of some weird coincidences. Today, I finally felt this power again. This energy is better than gaming, porn and junk food combined.

When I went out for a brief moment to take out the trash, I was hearing the birds sing. This time, it really sounded like music to me. So beautiful. So yeah, amazing start of this day. I am in charge. And I will not try to overwhelm myself from this time on, because I want to continue to be in charge. Interesting, but lately, I saw many people on this forum not feeling in control or burned out. I think, in the middle of the process, we all enter this point, where we try out so many new things that failing is inevitable. When this time arrives, we have to realize, what our real focus should be. It is like our body tells us: "Ok, awesome stuff, but that is too much. Please consider to make some choices." But I feel, after readjusting myself, I am more ready than ever before.

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21 hours ago, Alexanderle said:

Today was a beautiful morning full of realizations. I finally woke up again at 5. But when trying to sleep at night, it really was a struggle. I think I was fighting with myself for like one hour to finally sleep. I don't know, why it was so hard this time. Maybe, because today is my birthday. And I hate my birthdays. They show me very clearly, who shows up and who calls me. There are certain people, I know will call me and then there is the annoying rest of the pack, who only calls me, because they get remembered by some instance like facebook. But I deleted facebook a while back. I don't want to hear to congratulations, who never talk to you but then give you all these nice words, just because they got reminded. Also do me a favor and don't congratulate me. It hate it even more, when I get wishes, because I tell people. This struggle with birthdays goes on ever since. 

So why was it still a beautiful morning? Because I finally had my complete morning routine back. Waking up was easy again. So, I put on some nice music, go through my daily routine and around 6 I sit in front of the pc, watch some series in spanish or dutch and then go to work. It feels so good. So amazing. You have to realize that I did not even need an alarm clock. I was just awake at 5. This is so great that I could burst out of excitement. Since I finally let go off my exhaustive list of a thousand goals , I feel enourmous relieve. I only have a couple of things to focus on. My most deepest desire in this world, nothing comes even close, is to be in charge of myself. Not feeling controlled by substances, other people or basically my life. When I want to make a decision, I want to make it, because I feel that this is now my decision, not because of some weird coincidences. Today, I finally felt this power again. This energy is better than gaming, porn and junk food combined.

When I went out for a brief moment to take out the trash, I was hearing the birds sing. This time, it really sounded like music to me. So beautiful. So yeah, amazing start of this day. I am in charge. And I will not try to overwhelm myself from this time on, because I want to continue to be in charge. Interesting, but lately, I saw many people on this forum not feeling in control or burned out. I think, in the middle of the process, we all enter this point, where we try out so many new things that failing is inevitable. When this time arrives, we have to realize, what our real focus should be. It is like our body tells us: "Ok, awesome stuff, but that is too much. Please consider to make some choices." But I feel, after readjusting myself, I am more ready than ever before.

I also hope for my routine tomorrow. I got closer today. Tomorrow will be the day. 

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Birthdays are similar for me. I only ever get a message from my mother these days. There's a half-hearted celebration at work usually but I don't like any of those people so... lol. For me I think it's just a matter of not having any genuine friends right now and that is something that's totally in my hands, so I can't blame anything else. I used to be the kind of person who always got depressed that nobody ever called me or encouraged me but now I realize that I never did that stuff either. Now I try to at least be the one to tell people they're doing well in life... even for something small. I think eventually it'll lead to the kind of supportive friendships I've always craved. Not saying anything about you or your situation, your post just inspired me to realize that. 🙂

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Thanks @Erik2.0.

Besides that. I will not continue this journal the way I did. I just have to gaming problem. No desire whatsover. The thing is that it is pointless to thing about gaming addiction, when I am not a gamer. My problems and challenges are somewhere else. I feel that I finished the process. That being said the process is never finished. This process is called life. It is all about being a better person that the person I was yesterday. Gaming addiction is for me a result of the absense of good alternatives and unfulfilled needs. Some of my needs are now fulfilled. Others still need more attention. I will use this journal to fill it with interesting insights, articles or ideas, when I feel like it and when I think that it also might be interesting for other people. But and important chapter of my life is complete. I have learned more in 1.5 years than in 20 years. Time for a new chapter. 

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I decided that I want to still write in this journal. Today, I came to realize that I kinda miss to write things down regarding my own thoughts and daily life. I normally don't like to change my mind, but in this regard, it is something, I feel good about. So I will continue this journal. I will also put the information of the other post in this journal as well. Since this journal here is just to "precious" to me. Eventually, I might want to reread things, I said earlier. So yeah, I will also continue to put ideas and insights I have, in this journal rather than in an external one. 

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The truth about dopamine

Recently, I have checked the forum to see, how often people use the term dopamine. I found that it is used more than 500 times. Every single time, it is somehow used as an excuse. Like an external force that makes it impossible for us to resist certain temptations - may it be pornography, gaming, youtube or whatever. People call it the happiness neurotransmitter. I found this interesting and did a short research check. And I found a bunch of indications that what we believe today is not true. Here is the actual scientific consensus: Dopamine is a neurotransmitter and involved in several pathways, starting from movement regulation to motivation to some degree. But the actual pleasure, we experience, has nothing to do with dopamine; this is caused by other things like opioids for instance. Dopamine, despite several functions will cause you to do a behavior again. But eventually, after doing a behavior consistently, there is not always a noticeable rise in dopamine levels. Animals, which have dopamine producing cells removed will still feel pleasure and enjoy things - they just won't pursue it, because the pleasure system is intact (https://www.theverge.com/2018/3/27/17169446/dopamine-pleasure-chemical-neuroscience-reward-motivation). This article explains the anhedonia hypothesis that people with depression show lower levels of dopamine. So overall, dopamine is involved in reinforcement, learning and motivation, but has nothing to do with pleasure.

More articles on that topic:

https://www.theguardian.com/science/2013/feb/03/dopamine-the-unsexy-truth

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19073424

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/women-who-stray/201701/no-dopamine-is-not-addictive

 

Why is that relevant? Once again, someone starts to spread something in the internet and people start believing it and use it in there own argumentation. So therefore, people say stuff like: "I am addicted to gaming, because it triggers my dopamine levels." This is false. As a matter of fact, I think that it makes us more prone to look for external excuses: "It is not my fault that I am addicted, it is the dopamine and I am helpless." We should also get rid of the idea of dopamine fasting, because neuroscience is always more complicated than that. Instead, we are in charge. You are gaming, because you like it at that moment and have no better alternatives. As long, as there is nothing else to pursue, you will still go back to gaming. So therefore, just trying to stay away from gaming to magically cure yourself from dopaminergic effects is nonsense. The goal is to instead focus on meaningful activities.

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On 3/15/2020 at 6:22 PM, Alexanderle said:

Hey @Erik2.0 you are already like ten steps ahead of most people. I think that overall having too much calories is the main reason for stagnation. So I would say: Just continue, what you are doing. Focus on the stuff that is good for you: Vegetables, good meat, eggs and whatever. I am barely eating any bread, but when it comes down to carbohydrate sources there are obviously differences. I am always trying, when I have a desire for that stuff to go towards better alternatives. But if you just keep going and are working out, you will reach your goal. I mean, it took me a couple of months to get there. It was very helpful to never set a fixed point in time, where I wanted to have something achived. Just keep going and you will get there. It is really about who you think you are, your mindset etc.

Regarding working out: I invested in a gym chair and adjustable dumbbells, so I can always get a nice workout done. I would also like to have a pullbar, but I am worried to break my appartment, so I avoid that. xD

But besides that, you can always get a nice workout in without any stuff. I especially love the strong by zumba workouts, because those music synced workouts are just fun! Nothing comparable with zumba, really good stuff! You should check it out. The channel "popsugar fitness" has a couple of them. I sometimes don't really bother that much about the specific workout, what to do etc. I just do what I feel like.  I don't try to win a bodybuilding contest, I just want to look good and lean. I think a slightly visible sixpack is already perfect. Those bodybuilding monkeys are ridiculous. ^^ When I am not feeling well for weights, I do one of those workouts. There are literally thousands of them in the internet. I also go to them in real life at campus, but that is not an option right now. Just keep moving and have fun. And it really does not matter, whether you reach your goal to be lean next week or next year. I am paying more attention to do it all in a fashion that I will be able to still do it in 30 years. Long time investment.

Sorry I only saw this today for some reason. Thanks so much for your feedback. It's really made me feel okay with enjoying the process and not so focused on getting results asap. I like the idea of training long term. I'd like to be a strong dad that gives his children some heavy numbers to aspire to. Good point on your dopamine post to focus on meaningful activities. I find that's the best way to get my mind off games is to focus on something meaningful to pursue.

Edited by Erik2.0

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5 hours ago, Alexanderle said:

Recently, I have checked the forum to see, how often people use the term dopamine. I found that it is used more than 500 times. Every single time, it is somehow used as an excuse.

I wonder if you could correlate that with the success of the members' individual detoxes 😄  Blaming and excuses never get us anywhere.

Edited by Ikar
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