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Kim

Stopped playing WoW - addicted to other Media/Dopamin though

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Hello to the Community. 

I just quite playing WoW. I was never a full neckbeard WoW Addict or anything, just a normal dude who likes fantasy games after work from time to time. I actually played quite casually when it comes to time. But I still have so many urges to lock in to see whats up or use the WoW App Companion or sneak in another Mythic run. Also noticed that I spent quite some time browsing Guides or Forums on top of the Gaming itself. I developed cognitive dissonanz in that I think WoW is a 'losers game' and i really don't like the stereotypes associated with the game, while still not changing my behaviour. 

So i deinstalled, which was hard because I have 2 friends from my hometown and we tend to play in a group together from time to time and it is a great experience to reconnect with these friends, which is now lost for now. Could not bring myself to delete my account of all the time/money/memories invested into different Blizzard Games and Characters. Always have the feeling that moderation is possible, than i fall back into it after 6 months. Wanna be better this time. 

My problem and the cause of writing: I tend to replace Wow with the next best thing. It does not even have to be games. Can be youtube videos, internet articles, more harmless non multiplayer games on a console or anything else to keep the Dopamine Flowing and my brain constantly distracted. My problem is not Games it self but constant distraction through all kinds of Media. I have trouble sitting still for a minute. New hobbies are daunting because they don't give dopamine (in the beginning) and I have trouble getting into Flow. 

Does anyone have some help for that? It is tough to compete with that constant flow of dopamine. 

Thank you for your time. 

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You've done really well in understanding yourself. Most of my struggle was the same issue - I could stop gaming very easily, but then I would just pick up a different dopamine pipe. I had to sit down with all my dopamine sources and carefully categorize them - 'never use', '3 hours on Saturday', '1 hour a day but only after work', etc.

But how do you get to the state of mind to actually implement something like that? For me, it was falling back in love with books. Reading starts out really low-dopamine, but it forces you to use your imagination and eventually it feels incredibly good. So now I read a lot and use the other dopamine pipes very little, and reading feels healthy enough that I'm happy with that.

Hopefully that gives you some ideas. And, welcome!

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Thanks for the reply! Yeah I used to read a lot of non fictional books, but now it is hard to start because of the non-reward. I will try to categorize my dopamine activities as well and give them a limit. Sticking to the limit is another thing though..!

 

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Definitely another thing 🙂 But having your goal-limits in mind might help you reduce, as long as you don't beat yourself up about missing them.

The main thing is that your willpower is destroyed by heavy dopamine use. So, realistically, you only have enough willpower now to make a very small reduction in your dopamine use. But that's fine, because you will then have a little more willpower, which you can apply to using dopamine a little less... and so on. It's gradual but it works.

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