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My diary


Zero
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So this will be my diary/journal... 

I feel like I need to write it all down what's going on inside me during trying to quit video games again and if I do so, I think it's best to do it in an environment where people are living in similar situations, facing the same problems and trying to reach the same goals. 

As I wrote in my introduction: I've been addicted to video games all my life, but last year I moved in with my girlfriend and started my own business. I felt really motivated to start a new life and the desire to play video games almost completely disappeared. But in the past few months I started to feel a little bit unhappy/unsure about my relationship for various reasons and suddenly I found myself playing mobile games during work and 6 to 8 hours from evening until late night every day, which made the relationship worse because my girlfriend realized that I lost focus on my business and I felt stressed by knowing that she knows about it, even if she didn't say anything. I could feel that she is losing respect for me. My business is still growing slowly, but it could grow so much faster if I would be fully focused on it again. Realizing my life is about to go downhill again I deleted 2 games from my laptop and about 12 from my phone some days ago, but still I am not 100% clean yet. Every evening I play an escape game on my phone against - ironically - my girlfriend. We battle each other who can escape a stage faster and play about 30 to 40 minutes every evening and it is not a big deal to me, but I know if I want to fully commit to quit video games, I have to quit this aswell.

So that's the current situation. Still not completely clean, but for a few days the gaming is already strongly reduced. 

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It has been a few days now that I deleted most of my games. I don't remember which day it was, I think it was at the beginning of last week. I felt horrible since then, physically and mentally. I'm in a bad mood most days, I can't really concentrate on work, I feel so tired all day every day and there is this strong desire to play... But the most stressful part is to act like I am fine, because my girlfriend doesn't know about my problems and I don't want her to know. 

I am a person who analyzes a lot. So of course I tried to find out why I am addicted to video games and found two reasons:

- the real world is boring to me. The places, the people, society, activities... Life seems to be so limited in every way. I am fascinated by medieval fantasy or futuristic science fiction worlds, but reality is just a dull, boring world in between. Most people seem to be boring and enjoying a mediocre (at best) life. No one seems to have a dream, a vision or at least something interesting to say anymore. Most societies' standard of living seems to fall instead of rising and all activities I tried so far (multiple sports and hobbies) just don't give me what video games are giving me. It's like:"yeah, that's a nice thing to do but do I need to do it again and again? Maybe not... It's not THAT interesting..." 

- the second reason comes from a friend of mine, and she was totally right about it. She said:"when it comes to achievements, unlike the real world, video games are fair." and that's totally true in my opinion. If you want to level up your character or you want to get an item, you know exactly what you have to do to get your reward. You know that it will be a grind but you are willing to do it, because you know what you will get for it and when. Do you know how many hours you have to work or what you have to do to finally get that raise, or that promotion, or that car you always wanted? Maybe you're busting your ass day by day but in the end still that idiot coworker you never liked gets the position anyway, for reasons you'll never know. 

These are the two reasons I think that make video games so addicting for me: Escaping from the boring real world into more fascinating worlds and knowing exactly what I have to invest for getting what I want. 

But still I want to live in the real world. I know that none of these worlds, achievements, etc. is worth something. It is just an illusion. Pull the plug and you stand there with nothing. 

It's just so hard to quit... 

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This Bad mood is typical and get's better after some time.

In my opinion stopping gaming ist something to bevproud of. It is helpful to Share this with your GF If you are able to do so.

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21 hours ago, WorkInProgress said:

This Bad mood is typical and get's better after some time.

In my opinion stopping gaming ist something to bevproud of. It is helpful to Share this with your GF If you are able to do so.

Thank you for visiting and posting in my diary/journal.

Yes, I know about the bad mood. Some years ago I tried to quit (a few times to be honest) and I could make 6 weeks without playing. The first few days I am normally unable to do anything, just sitting at home or sleeping or walking around outside while being nervous because my fingers want to click something. After some days I start feeling better, able to think and start doing things again, but I know there are days where it randomly all comes back: The urge to play, the bad mood, being nervous... I need to find a good way to get through these days, or least get through them somehow without falling back into old habits...

I don't want to share it with my girlfriend. I know there are people who say: "In a relationship/marriage you should share everything with each other", but I disagree on that. I simply don't want to share it with her and also in my opinion it is not always good/useful/helpful to share everything. My family also doesn't know about my addiction but a few friends of mine do. I just casually told my girlfriend last week: "Oh well, I deleted all my games from my phone. I want to spend my free time more useful.", but she has no idea what it actually means to me and what a struggle it is.

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Today I felt a lot better than yesterday. In the morning it was a little bit difficult to get going and during the day I was not that much productive, but there was not much desire to play and I was in a good mood. I was able to think about routines and make plans. Doing so I felt actually really happy and kind of "free".

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Today I realized that for me the hardest time of the day is the morning, right after waking up. I immediately start thinking of the things I need to do that day and it already makes me feel a little bit stressed, which makes me want to play. So I need to establish a morning routine. I am thinking about meditation or some easy sports activity. I already started running 2 weeks ago, but I only do it twice a week because I am a beginner and actually hate running. I do it anyway because I feel I really should do something for my stamina. I highly prefer lifting weights, which I do irregularly. Some weeks I workout really intense but when the addiction gets too strong I feel to exhausted to do it and do nothing for weeks.

It was a little bit difficult today. All day long thoughts and pictures of the games that I loved to play popped up in my head. Sometimes it gave me a headache but I managed to resist and instead made lists of things I want to do, topics I want to know more about, books I want to read, bands i want to listen to, movies I want to watch and people I want to follow. I always aim for growing, physically and mentally. I want my business to grow and be successful, I want to get in better shape and i want to gain more knowledge. Now I just need to establish routines. It's not easy, self-organization has never been my strength. But thinking about the person I could be in the future makes me feel good. I don't want to be the kid in a grown man's body anymore. So I will give it my best and not give up.

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I couldn't go running today because it was raining all day today. So i stayed at home and tried to be somewhat productive, but I didn't really feel motivated. Late afternoon I started thinking about "maybe sticking to only one game is fine", which is not, of course. Even without playing I procrastinate. I'm such a messed up person with lots of bad habits, no structure, no routines and no emotional self-control. This will be a long, hard way to go... 

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I didn't post last night. I think I should change the time for posting in here, because at night before I sleep I don't feel like reflecting on this topic. Yesterday was nothing special going on. In the afternoon I felt a longing for "other worlds" because I felt bored of this world and my daily life. I went running and felt better afterwards, like I could get something out of my system.

Today I feel like shit. Tired, exhausted, bored, bad mood, no motivation, depressed. But strangely there is no urge to play video games. That made me think of something: Before, I always thought I feel depressed and unmotivated because video games keep me from improving and moving forward in my life and the excessive playing is tiring me. I thought when I quit gaming I will start to feel better. Motivated, focused, energetic, happy. Especially because aside from the video game addiction I am living a really healthy life. I eat healthy, I sleep enough, I do workout (more or less regularly), I started running and I like to take walks. But what if I am wrong and I am tired, unmotivated and depressed because there is something wrong with me/my health? Of course I have more time to do better/more useful/meaningful things now because of not playing, but I don't feel like it has any positive influence on my mental state. The thought that today's poor condition might not have anything to do with the video game addiction but with health problems really worries me.

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On 7/16/2021 at 2:40 PM, Zero said:

I don't want to share it with my girlfriend. I know there are people who say: "In a relationship/marriage you should share everything with each other", but I disagree on that. I simply don't want to share it with her and also in my opinion it is not always good/useful/helpful to share everything. My family also doesn't know about my addiction but a few friends of mine do. I just casually told my girlfriend last week: "Oh well, I deleted all my games from my phone. I want to spend my free time more useful.", but she has no idea what it actually means to me and what a struggle it is.

Hmmm, I agree with you in that you do not need to share everything, but I share things that could help improve my relationships with other people. Telling my partner that I am struggling with gaming has helped her understand why I am feeling stressed/unhappy at times, and support me accordingly when I needed help. She has helped me limit my screentime and become more comfortable with playing games with friends. What do you think? 

On 7/17/2021 at 5:55 PM, Zero said:

Today I realized that for me the hardest time of the day is the morning, right after waking up. I immediately start thinking of the things I need to do that day and it already makes me feel a little bit stressed, which makes me want to play. 

 

On 7/17/2021 at 5:55 PM, Zero said:

I always aim for growing, physically and mentally.

Do you think that these two can be related? Up until recently, I had the exat same feeling. But, after changing from pursuing active growth- that is, doing focused activities that "improve" me in some way- to passive growth- believing that I will naturally improve as a person over time- I've been waking up feeling better more often. 

Another thing that has helped me was to shift my thoughts into "things I need want to get done" when I wake up. Instead of thinking of all the chores right away, I thought of the stuff I am actually looking forward to. 

In general, I feel like finding a very accessible, quick activity to do in the morning that you actually are enjoying or excited about is what has been helpful to me. 

 

I hope that you will be able to keep up your hard work, and take time to rest and reflect as well 🙂 

Po

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Thank you for your posts. These days I have a friend visiting me at my place. I will reply next week when he leaves. 

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On 7/20/2021 at 7:06 PM, Pochatok said:

Hmmm, I agree with you in that you do not need to share everything, but I share things that could help improve my relationships with other people. Telling my partner that I am struggling with gaming has helped her understand why I am feeling stressed/unhappy at times, and support me accordingly when I needed help. She has helped me limit my screentime and become more comfortable with playing games with friends. What do you think? 

Well, I have to say that, for quite some time now, I sometimes think that we aren't on the same team and I am not sure if we will stay together for a long time, so there is not enough trust to tell her about this. I don't think it would help improve my relationship with her, more likely she will lose respect for me and consider me weak I guess. The relationship developing into a direction I don't like is one of the reasons why I am feeling a strong desire to play again for some time now.

On 7/20/2021 at 7:06 PM, Pochatok said:

Do you think that these two can be related? Up until recently, I had the exat same feeling. But, after changing from pursuing active growth- that is, doing focused activities that "improve" me in some way- to passive growth- believing that I will naturally improve as a person over time- I've been waking up feeling better more often. 

When I compare myself to 15 years younger me I have to realize that there is no such "passive growth". Some of my points of view sure changed, but that's exactly it: a change, but no growth or improvement. I am still the same person with the same characteristics and flaws. It might work well for others, but to me it looks like if I want to grow, I need to do it actively.

On 7/20/2021 at 7:06 PM, Pochatok said:

Another thing that has helped me was to shift my thoughts into "things I need want to get done" when I wake up. Instead of thinking of all the chores right away, I thought of the stuff I am actually looking forward to. 

The problem here is that - for some unknown reason - as soon as I schedule things, even if I enjoy doing them, they feel like I "have to" do them and it feels heavy and stressful. I feel happiest if I can do everything spontaneously. Even the things I don't like tend to be easy if I can say:"Hey, I feel like doing that now, so why not just do it?" But of course I know that's not how it works when you want to get forward in life.

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On 7/20/2021 at 7:32 PM, WorkInProgress said:

Interesting reflection. Maybe gaming was a Patch for an underlying issue (mental or physical). Maybe you should talk to your doctor.

Yes, if my mental condition stays like that for some more time, I'll definitely consider doing so.

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A friend of mine was at my place for almost a week. Besides me having to work we did a lot of outdoor activities, working out together at my home and having a drink in the evenings. It was a nice time and I didn't think much about playing games, but since he left it's coming back. Also I realize how my brain tries to find an alternative for the games to still get that dopamine, because recently I feel a growing desire for drinking alcohol and watching movies, although I'm an occasional drinker and wasn't really interested in watching a lot of movies in the past few years.

I really need to work on my self-organization, no matter if it's about work or my interests. Sometimes I feel it's all too much and I end up not getting forward at all, which makes me hate myself. When I start thinking about why I am like that, I realize that I have no real goals in life. I mean, right now I have a girlfriend and my own business, and of course there is the idea that I could have a family and make good money someday, but I don't feel any burning desire for that or anything else. It's all like: "...yeah, it could be, it might happen, but if not, doesn't matter..." All I know is: I want to live, but what I actually want to do with my life I don't really know I think...

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It sounds like you are using videogames as a way of not dealing with issues in your relationship

I had a coach that was big on being honest with people.

His reasonings the more shameful we feel about something the more we feel the need to hide ourselves.

If you are avoiding honesty with your gf because you don't think it's going to go anywhere with her why do you feel the need to be dating this person in the first place?

If you are afraid of appearing weak that's more of a reason to tell her.

If a women thinks you're weak for struggling that's a her problem not a you problem.  Besides many women when they complain about their SO not communicating this is what they are talking about. 

I'll leave with one last thing.

What sounds like more of a respectable action to you?

 

Telling a woman something you know might make her reject you or find you unattractive but you do it any ways because of your own integrity and well being is important to you over what others think.

 

Or hiding something that's causing you harm in order to avoid losing her respect.

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