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Kaizen - The Quest for Neverending Self-Improvement

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Journal Day #8 // Days without gaming: 23                                                                                                                 Saturday, 18/03/2017

Time sure passes quickly. Just a mere week separates me from the first milestone of 30 days w/o gaming. Conversely, I never perceived my decision as wrong or longed for games. I did not even feel the urge to play. I presume that it was not an addiction in my case then, but rather a filler for the lack of other activities and options to spend my time. I make a lot of progress on several assignments we have received for the next fortnight, however I lack this time for prep work on my thesis (biggest assignment). This will be a stress spike I need to consider for the next couple of months. Still, I cannot convert myself to a pure workaholic as it seems. I need to find meaningful hobbies for the future, however work currently prevents me from doing so. I have been flirting with martial arts for a while, maybe I'll pick up archery (kyudo) or swordsmanship (kendo). One is never too old for these things after all.

Gratitude journal

- my family

- more rain

- a very particular type of char that tastes amazing if it is prepared with butter, spice and a slight dash of lemon. Add some potatoes and vegetables and you have a feast!

One amazing thing that happened/I did today

- significant progress on assignments, set up collaboration platform for work group, had an amazing conversation with team members

Workout/run: -nothing-   --> this is bugging me actually. No time for sport

Meditation: -nothing- --> likewise, no time for meditation. Need to get back into the cycle

Daily affirmation: Rome was not built in a day. Baby steps were made and I am on the right track now. (JK: Have to walk for myself though, there is no fast-travel option in life)

Reading:  Nathaniel Branden's book on self-esteem

Weekly Goal(s): spend less time on the PC, be more proactive  --> doing well, one more day       check, comparatively less time wasted

Monthly Goal: Survive the first 30 days of gaming detox, get my paper done, study hard for upcoming exams and start working on my thesis

3 Month Goal: Successfully complete 90 days of non-gaming in order to make my brain rewire. There is no way back as I do not own gaming-related stuff anymore, however withdrawal symptoms might be hard.

What went well today: another very productive day. so far, so good

What I could have done to make my day better: make up for lack of meditation and sport

What I will do differently tomorrow:  work, team work, prep work for assignments, hopefully time to revise concept for thesis

Edited by Granitwelle
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Journal Day #9 // Days without gaming Day 26 // Monk-Mode Day 1                                                                                                             Tuesday, 21/03/2017

What has been intended to be a significant contribution to a team task was met with criticism as it was to in-depth and detailed. One needs to consider these things nonetheless, however the time pressure of our schedule does not allow for such things. I hate learning things by heart and not having sufficient time to reflect on content. We are not robots, but critical human beings with an intellect of our own, the capacity to understand, derive principles and form both the environment and ourselves to our own will. Yet the Bachelor system forces one to minimize effort and to reproduce bullet points like a broken record. I am so looking forward to a proper job to be honest.

Complaining will get me nowhere, time to man up and "get shit done" and avoid to "half-ass" betterment attempts, as an international study colleague from Kentucky would always put it. Well then, I start another period of monk mode then.

Gratitude journal

- parents
- professors that challenge you but motivate and help you develop further

Workout/run: 1 hour on the treadmill. As soon as I recover my stamina, I will start lifting again

Meditation: entire cycle

Daily affirmation: Rome was not built in a day. Baby steps were made and I am on the right track now. (JK: Have to walk for myself though, there is no fast-travel option in life)

Reading:  Nicolo Macchiavelli - Il Principe

Weekly Goal(s): serious progress on thesis, less complaining,

Monthly Goal: Survive the first 30 days of gaming detox, get my paper done, study hard for upcoming exams and start working on my thesis

3 Month Goal: Successfully complete 90 days of non-gaming in order to make my brain rewire. There is no way back as I do not own gaming-related stuff anymore, however withdrawal symptoms might be hard.

One amazing thing that happened/I did today: worked a lot and tried to reduce the workload for a group assignment

What went well today: productive day

What I could have done to make my day better: I want to overcome the beta mindset and become the best version of myself that I can become, be less dependent on others, become a jack of all trades who is able to operate on his own but also a pure team player if necessary.

What I will do differently tomorrow:  work, team work, prep work for assignments, hopefully time to revise concept for thesis

Edited by Granitwelle
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Posted

You doing a bachelor's degree? What on?

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You doing a bachelor's degree? What on?

Business Administration, quite tough degree indeed. Quite tough paired with the detox lol. Fairing quite well though. You're student as well, right?
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Journal Day #10 // Days without gaming Day 27// Monk-Mode Day 2                                                Wednesday, 22/03/2017

Short entry today, yet another productive day. My brain is craving for a dopamine fix but all I have is work and sport at the moment. My stamina is returning and I feel more alive every day. This weekend, I'll add crunches, sit-ups, jumping jacks and squats to the mix. Meditation really keeps me grounded and I realize that testosterone is coming back as well. Still felt some negative repercussions, it's getting tougher.

Gratitude journal

- Poets of the Fall; Metal

- Schweppes Bitter Lemon (lemonade)

Workout/run: walked 3 kilometers

Meditation: entire cycle

Daily affirmation: Only three more days. 30 day mark is in reach!

Reading:  Nicolo Macchiavelli - Il Principe

Weekly Goal(s): serious progress on thesis, less complaining,

Monthly Goal: Survive the first 30 days of gaming detox, get my paper done, study hard for upcoming exams and start working on my thesis

3 Month Goal: Successfully complete 90 days of non-gaming in order to make my brain rewire. There is no way back as I do not own gaming-related stuff anymore, however withdrawal symptoms might be hard.

One amazing thing that happened/I did today: completed uni assignments

What went well today: socialization, work

What I could have done to make my day better: stop caring and over-analyzing everything.

What I will do differently tomorrow: not much, work like a madman

Edited by Granitwelle

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Posted

I'm just a highschool kid...unfortunately.

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I'm just a highschool kid...unfortunately.

Don't see this in a negative light. You still have plenty of time to improve and undo some of the havoc gaming wreaks. I'm a couple of years ahead, yeah, but things don't get better by themselves. I wasted a ton of time and opportunities and everything feels like damage minimisation rather than improvement tbh.

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Posted

I'm just a highschool kid...unfortunately.

Don't see this in a negative light. You still have plenty of time to improve and undo some of the havoc gaming wreaks. I'm a couple of years ahead, yeah, but things don't get better by themselves. I wasted a ton of time and opportunities and everything feels like damage minimisation rather than improvement tbh.

Right on! Glad to hear you are able to contribute more in lectures. 

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I'm just a highschool kid...unfortunately.

Don't see this in a negative light. You still have plenty of time to improve and undo some of the havoc gaming wreaks. I'm a couple of years ahead, yeah, but things don't get better by themselves. I wasted a ton of time and opportunities and everything feels like damage minimisation rather than improvement tbh.

True shit. But sometimes I just can't stand the loneliness.

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Journal Day #11 // Days without gaming Day 29// Monk-Mode Day 0                                             Friday, 24/03/2017

Another productive day, presentation went surprisingly well and all assignments were completed. Furthermore, we also had a nice business dinner in the evening. I was way too formal and tense, however it was enjoyable, the food was great and the wine they served as well. I usually don't drink alcohol nowadays, however it's part of business anyway. I socialised a lot and eventually failed monk-mode (back to square 1). Caught a cold as well, no time to waste and tons of deadlines in the next two weeks. Challenge accepted I presume?

 

Edited by Granitwelle
my bad, a bit cheesy

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Posted (edited)

Fin ~ Chapter 1: Hitting the Road of Life (Day 1-30)

fall-autumn-road-facebook-timeline-cover

30 days-The first milestone of the 90-day gaming detox has finally been reached. A month has passed since I have sold everything gaming, manga and anime related. The sole remnant of this period is my avatar here which stems from a series which also strongly reflects the "journey" motif, the "theme" of my journal.

I decided to take a break, make a brief stop and reflect upon my progress and experiences so far. The previous month was tough, but change never comes easily or without sacrifice. I have socialized a lot more compared to the past, however I still waste too much time in front of the PC. My brief periods of escapism in the form of taking naps decrease and I feel comparatively higher energy levels throughout the day. This was presumably a consequence of my brain rewiring, trying to fill the wealth of time I now have at my disposal. Basic muscles and stamina are coming back as I spend a lot of time on our exercise bike/treadmill. Whereas I do not have built up sufficient muscle for lifting weights extensively, I am really looking forward to it. Moreover, I will also pick up martial arts and I'm really looking forward to the warmer weather. Training outside, learning the basic kata (moves) of kendo (swordsmanship). Meeting new people at the dojo will be exciting. I'm pumped!

For a strange reason though, I seem to be more emotional compared to the past where I used to be rather stoic and without much external expression. It's like a sea of repressed emotion, built up over a decade, now breaking free as the dam cracks and the torrential flood gushes out (poetic mood again). We're blokes, so we tend to bottle it up - bulldog spirit, stiff upper lip, keep calm and carry on, "ganbatte spirit" or whatever you want to call it. I'll have to learn how to deal with this circumstance, it does not go well with my ideal image of becoming a tougher, better version of myself. Presumably a temporary phenomenon.

Practicing meditation and mindfulness makes my actions with peers significantly more enjoyable and deep. I bought a collection of incense sticks, a Nepalese singing bowl as well as qigong balls (Baoding balls). For the calming effect rather than the esoteric pursuit, I practice a full cycle of chakra meditation on an almost daily basis. People start to notice the change as I try to be more compassionate, listen more and provide advice. Some even jokingly call me a priest. Gaming and succumbing to my primal instincts (PMO) has cultivated anxiety and a negative self-image over the course of time, so I am quite astonished how well I'm received by others recently. Still, I should become less dependent. I started another period of monk mode and pair it with a light version of NoFap (7 day productivity boost).

We are masters of our own instincts and we can forge our future for we are not slaves to primal needs and drive (gluttony, lust, urge to play games). It definitely feels like the right path.

Cumulative Progress: Days of journalling: 12  Days without gaming. 30  (Status 25/03/2017)

 

Edited by Granitwelle

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Posted (edited)

Chapter 2: Misty Mountain Trail (Day 30-60)

ac8fcbb6-a2e5-4d25-9286-32cd6e20b528(1).

霧深, the “misty mountain trail”, shall be the motif for the second month of the journey. The sublime eeriness of fog and its property of blurring vision should reflect doubt and uncertainty that is an integral part of our journey.

The wanderer has left the flat and winding road of life, took a detour at a junction and now meanders towards a large mountain, slowly but resolutely. The trail leads uphill and the wanderer eventually reaches a lush forest with a verdant canopy. Compared to the flat road, this path is harder to navigate as loose roots and massive stone plates are scattered all across the path. Nonetheless, the wanderer presses on steadily uphill.

Eventually, a thick, enshrouding fog impairs his vision and he needs to rest for a while and scan the environment in order to find his bearings. A looming shadow in the distance. Crippled woodwork and dead trees beneath the road. He shudders briefly, but then smiles. He sees the bright sunlight through both the thick fog as well as the verdant canopy. The path leads uphill, this is all he needs to know as he marches on, anticipating the joy of reaching the peak and beholding the stunning panorama from the top.

The way is the goal. Fear and doubt shall not stop me.

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Journal Day #13// Days without gaming Day 31// Monk-Mode Day 2                                                                                         Sunday, 26/03/2017

Gratitude journal

- my family, my dog

- Yoshida Brothers (Shamisen music)

Workout/run: - (caught a cold and had to take a break for two days)

Meditation: entire cycle

Daily affirmation: Alright, month two already. Bring it on!

Reading:  Nicolo Macchiavelli - Il Principe

Weekly Goal(s): serious progress on thesis, less complaining,  not met, had to work on other assignments which were more pressing

Monthly Goal: Survive the first 30 days of gaming detox, get my paper done, study hard for upcoming exams and start working on my thesis done, will rework thesis concept
be more active during the second month (day 30-60), ace an exam at the end of the month, thesis

3 Month Goal: Successfully complete 90 days of non-gaming in order to make my brain rewire. There is no way back as I do not own gaming-related stuff anymore, however withdrawal symptoms might be hard.

One amazing thing that happened/I did today: worked on case study

What went well today: work

What I could have done to make my day better: wake up earlier, be less doubtful

What I will do differently tomorrow: work more

Edited by Granitwelle

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Journal Day #14// Days without gaming: 34                                                                                                              Wednesday, 29/03/2017

Things get better and better every day. Stress recedes and I find joy in cultivating my mind and socializing with the right people. Meditation might have changed my mind on many things, however I have become way more positive and start to cut out negative influences from my life. Life is an opportunity rather than a threat. Since I started tougher sports and exercises, sweating out the beta-remnants gaming spawned, self-esteem increases in leaps and bounds. Screw external validation, the crippling crutch of (a)social media and the fleeting opinion of others. It's all within, we just need to move our lazy behind lol

Gratitude journal

- my decision to quit gaming

- Amorphis (Under the Red Cloud), Killswitch Engage

- Lipton Ice Tea

One amazing thing that happened/I did today

- quit being a nice guy, but rather being "selectively polite" 

Workout/run: squats, jumping jacks, jab punches low/mid/hi kicks

Meditation: full cycle

Daily affirmation: . Fall seven times, get up eight (Japanese proverb)

Reading:  Miyamoto Musashi: Gorin no Sho

Weekly Goal(s): get shit done like a boss

Monthly Goal: Survive the first 30 days of gaming detox, get my paper done, study hard for upcoming exams and start working on my thesis  check

3 Month Goal: Successfully complete 90 days of non-gaming in order to make my brain rewire. There is no way back as I do not own gaming-related stuff anymore, however withdrawal symptoms might be hard.

What went well today: productive like a boss

What I could have done to make my day better: quit gaming years ago already lol

What I will do differently tomorrow:  work, however remain vigilant as I expect something negative to happen soon

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Journal Day #15 // Days without gaming: 36                                                                                                                                                         Friday, 31/03/2017

Today was a tough day, but I stood my ground. Could have presented better, but hey, considering the fact that I wasn't presenting much during my gaming binges, I fared well. Finally had time to meditate and workout again. It's been 36 days already, time sure flies. Inertia and idleness still sometimes paralyze, however it is getting less and less frequent. Working on my personality now, I socialize more and I want to hire a coach after I finish my degree. This will take some time, but man it feels GOOD. What a fool I have been all those years, shackled by such a pointless hobby. I don't want to sound like an old man, back to work and lifting!

Gratitude journal

- my family and my dog

- a good person who entered my life some time ago. Hope this will blossom into a full-scale friendship

- my faith that has helped me through several tougher stretches of my life

Workout/run: exercise bike, walked 3km                 Meditation: full cycle                    Daily affirmation: Well done, keep going!

Daily reflection:

good incidents: presentation went well, socialised a lot, more assertive compared to the past

bad incidents: minor difference in opinion with peer, still too defensive

potential for improvement: increase awareness of deceptive people

Gaze towards the future ~ personal goals

Weekly Goal(s): get shit done like a boss check, I finished everything!

Monthly Goal: Survive the first 30 days of gaming detox, get my paper done, study hard for upcoming exams and start working on my thesis  check

3 Month Goal: Successfully complete 90 days of non-gaming in order to make my brain rewire. There is no way back as I do not own gaming-related stuff anymore, however withdrawal symptoms might be hard.

Edited by Granitwelle

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Posted (edited)

Journal Day #16 // Days without gaming: 37                                                                                                                                                         Saturday, 1/4/2017

The first weekend I simply enjoyed and relaxed. I still have a lot of work to do, however one also needs to rest occasionally. As I threw out and sold everything gaming and manga related, I did not have a possibility to watch my Blu-Rays and DVD collection. Therefore, I bought a Blu-ray player yesterday and had a nice evening with friends. Nachos, salsa dip and a couple of hilarious B-movies served as welcome entertainment - Machete, Kung Fury, Tremors. Spent the rest of the day with the family and working in the garden for a while, repairing things and simply enjoying spring - crocuses and snowdrops everywhere.

I still do not miss gaming after almost 40 days. The weeb is harder to overcome though lol

Gratitude journal

- my family and my dog

- my friends

Workout/run: exercise bike                                                Meditation: full cycle                                         Daily affirmation: Well done, keep going!

Daily reflection:

good incidents: relaxed and enjoyed the day, fixed a couple of things around the garden, socialised

bad incidents: still a lot of work to do, --> bad conscience

potential for improvement: complain less

Gaze towards the future ~ personal goals

Weekly Goal(s): get shit done like a boss check, I finished everything!

Monthly Goal: Survive the first 30 days of gaming detox, get my paper done, study hard for upcoming exams and start working on my thesis  check

3 Month Goal: Successfully complete 90 days of non-gaming in order to make my brain rewire. There is no way back as I do not own gaming-related stuff anymore, however withdrawal symptoms might be hard.

Edited by Granitwelle
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Journal Day #17 // Days without gaming: 39                                                                                                                                                         Monday, 3/4/2017

Wasted away the weekend after I was binge work-a-holicing for three weeks. A buddy and I re watched several seasons of X-Files recently, I didn't know that there was another season. That ending, the worst cliffhanger ever, I wonder whether they'll make another one to give the series closure. Other than that, I didn't do much. Gotta get back into shape! Still no urge to game and energy levels are still increasing. However I need to practice some restraint for I am wasting away too much time in front of PCs and the internet.

Any suggestions how to reduce screen time (PC) when you actually need it for work?

Gratitude journal

- my family and my dog

- my friends

Workout/run: exercise bike                                                Meditation: full cycle                                   Daily affirmation: You deserved some rest, now full throttle again!

Daily reflection:

good incidents: relaxed and enjoyed the day

bad incidents: procrastination

potential for improvement: complain less, work more

Gaze towards the future ~ personal goals

Weekly Goal(s): revise concept for thesis, this will not work out

Monthly Goal: make decent progress on the thesis, ace an important exam, keep moving onward

3 Month Goal: Successfully complete 90 days of non-gaming in order to make my brain rewire. There is no way back as I do not own gaming-related stuff anymore, however withdrawal symptoms might be hard.

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