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NEW VIDEO: I Replaced Gaming With Real Life (Nicco Transformation)

After 27 years, and 4255 hours++, I think its time.


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Hey there,

So this has been a long time coming. So I've actually been going through Nofap/porn recovery for the last 6 months or so, Hard mode and going strong, and it was the best thing I ever did (so far), opening my mind to a whole different way of living, and I actually started playing the piano after believing for years it was something I failed to learn in the past. Nope, I'm good at it! 

The benefits of that were great for me, and now that I'm in a reasonable comfortable place, I'm moving onto VideoGames. 

 

In truth, the cost video games has had on my life is almost hard to fully calculate both tangible and intangle;

  • Time-4255hrs++ (low ball figure, based on steam hours and what I remember from one MMO, but doesn't include XBOX hours, which was years of play, should be 8,000-12,000 hours atleast)
  • Money-€3,108.12+ (estimated, may be more)

 

I'll write a journal post about the more intangible costs at a later date...self-esteem, relationships, etc.

 

Full story;

I'm 27 from Ireland, I've had a long history with video games that began harmlessly enough as a father-son bonding experience (which was positive). However,  I was quite ill as a kid and teenager with epilepsy, often missing school a lot for hospital stays, eventually turning to video games more and more as an escape and distraction from the difficulties of illness, medication changes side effects but also to experience a sense of control over my life, and as a social outlet with my friends when I would be absent etc. 

This might seem reasonable but eventually, video games became a contributing factor to my illness (atleast on a psychological level, but arguable physical too), and its only in the last few years I fully realise that. It got to the point where I was experiencing so much social anxiety and fear about returning to school when I was absent for a long period that I'd feign or fake illness to stay home and play video games. 

Circumstances eventually changes, and I did go back, and I graduated from secondary school going to a very good college. But video games and this pattern became something I returned to when my illness returned or when I felt things became too unsafe/unmanagemable...in a sense I regressed back to the behaviour. This resulted in me dropping out of college when my seizures returned, and despite being offered to defer my year and see how my health improves etc, deep down I weighed the inconvenience of dealing with a new year and college against returning home to play video games as simple choice...and chose the video games. 

 

It's funny, while going through my porn reboot I incidentally didn't play any video games for something like 130 days, but after journaling about my history with them as part of my healing process I got insane cravings to, so I decided to play something for to see if it can be part of the reboot or not. Well it definitely can't, a few hours turned into 3 whole days. I completely went off the deep end, largely because my brain really just craved dopamine and besides porn, video games are just the infinite sugar daddies of the dopamine world (legal ones anyway).

I went from feeling fully present and connected to my surroundings to completely numbed up and distracted with intense brain fog, and needed a full day dopamine detox to set myself right. 

 

Warning signs recently or in the past;

  • Preoccupation with video games. CHECK
  • Withdrawal symptoms. irritability, anxiety, boredom, cravings, sadness. CHECK (Experiencing right now)
  • Tolerance-need to spend increasing amounts of time, may be motivated by a need for the completion of increasingly intricate, time-consuming, or difficult goals to achieve satisfaction and/or reduce fears of missing out. CHECK
  • Unsuccessful attempts to control participation in videogames. CHECK
  • Loss of interests in previous hobbies and entertainment as a result of, and with the exception of, video games. CHECK
  • Continued excessive use of games despite knowledge of psychosocial problems. CHECK
  • Has deceived family members, or others regarding their gaming. CHECK
  • Use of video games to escape or relieve negative mood. (eg. feelings of helplessness, guilt anxiety) CHECK
  • Has jeopardized or lost a significant relationship, job, educational, or career opportunity because of participation in video games. CHECK

 

If I'm honest, deep down I knew years ago I had a problem with video games because it felt like rot when I played to solve a problem they couldn't solve, and in many ways I didn't care about myself or love myself enough to face the truth and want a better life for me. But I do care now, and this is the beginning of my journey 🙂

 

 

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Welcome to the community, @Apollo093!

8 hours ago, Apollo093 said:

If I'm honest, deep down I knew years ago I had a problem with video games because it felt like rot when I played to solve a problem they couldn't solve, and in many ways I didn't care about myself or love myself enough to face the truth and want a better life for me. But I do care now, and this is the beginning of my journey 🙂

That's a great start—attitude wise! See you around. 😁

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I'd love to offer you my support and prayer for you in this time. I've noticed that video games and porn go almost hand-in-hand and wondered why, and I think you helped me understand that it has to do with dopamine and the chemical dependency on it. I"m now 48 hours into my detox and already there is so much going on around me to focus on besides video games, that I'm being fulfilled.

 

I understand about the trauma from when you were younger. I know video games became a crutch for me for multiple reasons, such as escaping the volatile environment I grew up in. I've noticed that the temptations start to ramp up whenever something happens to me that causes disappointment, frustration, or the like. It seems that these negative emotions creep up, and instead of dealing with them, I've retreated into the games. I'm about to focus more on my spiritual life, music, and beginning a new job, and I realize it's how I respond to each and every situation that will help me deal with negative emotions so that I don't relapse.

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