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INTRO Certified LOSER living on mum's couch!! Gaming Addict looking to turn things around!

Cognitive Corgi

Contributor
Jul 5, 2018
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I have never stood up for a damn thing in my whole life and I'm sick of it.
Getting halfway through Unscripted rekindled me in a big way. Now it's time to do something about it.

I'm almost 26. No major accomplishments in life. Pretty much lived as a basement-dweller.
You're looking at someone who spent time reading 100+ books as a way to action-fake away fears, all while doing nothing with the information.

Sure, I haven't sold anyone MLM snake oil or fallen prey to some time-for-money game, but my fears have kept me paralyzed from creating anything of value for others.

tl;dr severe gaming addiction:
Instead I slipped into a path of mindlessly numbing myself with video games. Runescape, Second Life, WoW, Smash Brothers, Maplestory, CS:GO, Overwatch, Hearthstone, Dota, Club Penguin (yes really), and my most active life-consuming fetish League of Legends, left me plugging into games for 8-14 hour days regularly for over a decade!! Not even because I was actively enjoying the games anymore, but because I needed some shallow sense of accomplishment.

The past 10 years have been:

" I haven't started yet, but it's due to some legitimate reason and certainly NOT because I'm scared to death and constantly bullshitting myself. It's certainly not because I haven't showered in literally three days and use all my spare time pretending to be an anime talking dog-person on Second Life or acting like hitting Platinum 1 ranking in my competitive game really means something. That can't be it.

I can't do this yet because [insert crappy justification here]. All the people who achieve are superstars who do not defecate and have never made mistakes. I'll park until I'm good enough, that way I can wait for the absolutely perfect time to ensure I never make any mistakes. "

That perfect time never come.
Only more procrastination. More fear. More regret. More missed oppurtunities to make a difference.
I'm getting older, which means have less time to act like I have time to spare.
This. ends. NOW.

I've made a huge jump recently and uninstalled every game I have.
Dusting off some of those useful books I'd read when I was taking zero action (Lean Startup/Dale Carnegie/Richest Man In Babylon/etc) and going to dead-focus on doing something with them.



My ultimate goal here is to educate myself out of incompetence and become successful by providing others genuine value first. I will leave my story here and be a positive influence to fellow gaming addicts by serving as an example that with hardwork almost ANYONE can rise from the ashes of mediocrity and reclaim life.
 

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TheOrchestrator

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@Cognitive Corgi
Thank you for being brave enough to be honest. I can really sense the frustration. As someone who has broken the chains of severe gaming addiction (yes, completely), I know exactly what you are going through, so you really struck a nerve.

I'm just going to be as blunt as possible here, so the message is not lost: Yes, gaming addiction is very real. Just as real as heroine addiction. While your problem may have started with some bad decisions, it's now deeply embedded in your biology, and getting out of this is going to require some serious moves. No more books. The only way you are going to fight this is by taking MASSIVE DRASTIC action. I'm being dead f'ing serious here. And I mean do it without thinking. If you still have games in your house, give them away or throw them away. DON'T THINK. ALL OF THEM. Find someone that you trust, and tell them what you are doing, not so they can pat you on the back, but so they can hold you accountable to this. Make sure there is no way to install anything back during moments of weakness. Again, accountability is a huge help here. Secondly, go to your YouTube account and delete every channel that is directly or indirectly related to video games. Do this on all other social network accounts (Facebook, whatever). Don't stop there though. Go to your Google account if you have one, and access all of the data that Google accumulated from your online habits, to determine what type of ads to send you. Delete anything that would even HINT to Google that you are interested in video games. If that doesn't work, get a new Google account. And if there's anything you can think of that I haven't mentioned, yeah do that too. You need time away from all of this stuff, basically a detox. Your brain and body needs real proof that it can survive this. Also, tell yourself repeatedly throughout this process that you truly can be happy and satisfied without any of that crap.

If you have any friends that are hardcore gamers, drop them. You can't worry about them right now. For now, you just need to leave them behind. Your environment needs to change. Environment is huge. Go out and seek out meetups and groups of people who see life very differently and are seriously trying to better themselves. Don't worry about trying to impress these people. Just make friends and find as many ways as possible to help them. Don't ask for anything, just offer your help. Heck, if one of them can give you some work, all the better (gotta get a job, Bro!).

You are going to have to develop an active hostility and fear when it comes to this stuff. Yes, I know that this may sound a little extreme and irrational, but that's really what it's going to take. As you are doing all of this, remind yourself of how much of your life has been thrown away and how much of your time has been eaten by these quick-hit dopamine machines.

Over time, if you can hold out long enough, your mind will start to shift, and you'll begin to see things from outside of your addiction. Your thoughts and emotions will start to align themselves with the actions you've been taking. Your mind will start to catch up with your hands and feet, suddenly in congruence with the actions you are taking, providing you with more than enough reasons to stay motivated and keep moving.

If this doesn't work, do not hesitate to seek professional help. There are too many men and women out there that are fighting real gaming addiction on their own, when they really should have sought out a professional years ago.

I know that there's nothing about money or entrepreneurship in my post, but really, this is the first step before all of that. Good luck, and PM me any time. I'm rooting for you (seriously).
 
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Bearcorp

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Solid advice @TheOrchestrator!

@Cognitive Corgi welcome to the forum. Being hard on yourself won't achieve anything, you've recognised the faults thus far which is the first step. Be positive about today and the future, and look back on the past as a lesson. A way of life NOT to live. Focus on what you do want, and get after it!
 

TheOrchestrator

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Solid advice @TheOrchestrator!

@Cognitive Corgi welcome to the forum. Being hard on yourself won't achieve anything, you've recognised the faults thus far which is the first step. Be positive about today and the future, and look back on the past as a lesson. A way of life NOT to live. Focus on what you do want, and get after it!
Thanks for the compliment (as well as the rep! :)) @Bearcorp . And I agree wholeheartedly with you too.
 

lowtek

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Welcome aboard. I'm looking forward to watching you right the ship.

Check out some of @Lex DeVille 's threads on freelancing. It's not necessarily fastlane, but you can't go from zero to business superhero overnight.

Even doing some simple VA work for $8 an hour is a step up from your current station in life. Don't be afraid to start at the bottom. Starting is the most important thing, as you've come to realize.

Just try to start earning money asap. Even getting a job at your local grocery store is an improvement. Something. Anything.

Just. Get. In. Motion.
 

Kak

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I have never stood up for a damn thing in my whole life and I'm sick of it.
Getting halfway through Unscripted rekindled me in a big way. Now it's time to do something about it.

I'm almost 26. No major accomplishments in life. Pretty much lived as a basement-dweller.
You're looking at someone who spent time reading 100+ books as a way to action-fake away fears, all while doing nothing with the information.

Sure, I haven't sold anyone MLM snake oil or fallen prey to some time-for-money game, but my fears have kept me paralyzed from creating anything of value for others.

tl;dr severe gaming addiction:
Instead I slipped into a path of mindlessly numbing myself with video games. Runescape, Second Life, WoW, Smash Brothers, Maplestory, CS:GO, Overwatch, Hearthstone, Dota, Club Penguin (yes really), and my most active life-consuming fetish League of Legends, left me plugging into games for 8-14 hour days regularly for over a decade!! Not even because I was actively enjoying the games anymore, but because I needed some shallow sense of accomplishment.

The past 10 years have been:

" I haven't started yet, but it's due to some legitimate reason and certainly NOT because I'm scared to death and constantly bullshitting myself. It's certainly not because I haven't showered in literally three days and use all my spare time pretending to be an anime talking dog-person on Second Life or acting like hitting Platinum 1 ranking in my competitive game really means something. That can't be it.

I can't do this yet because [insert crappy justification here]. All the people who achieve are superstars who do not defecate and have never made mistakes. I'll park until I'm good enough, that way I can wait for the absolutely perfect time to ensure I never make any mistakes. "

That perfect time never come.
Only more procrastination. More fear. More regret. More missed oppurtunities to make a difference.
I'm getting older, which means have less time to act like I have time to spare.
This. ends. NOW.

I've made a huge jump recently and uninstalled every game I have.
Dusting off some of those useful books I'd read when I was taking zero action (Lean Startup/Dale Carnegie/Richest Man In Babylon/etc) and going to dead-focus on doing something with them.



My ultimate goal here is to educate myself out of incompetence and become successful by providing others genuine value first. I will leave my story here and be a positive influence to fellow gaming addicts by serving as an example that with hardwork almost ANYONE can rise from the ashes of mediocrity and reclaim life.
Good job killing the games. Addiction is hard. Replace it with something more productive. Get addicted to being a bad a$$.

My wife and I have decided that our TV will be the last one we ever own. When it bites the dust, it's over for TV in our home. I bet we never miss it.
 

Xeon

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Instead I slipped into a path of mindlessly numbing myself with video games. Runescape, Second Life, WoW, Smash Brothers, Maplestory, CS:GO, Overwatch, Hearthstone, Dota, Club Penguin (yes really), and my most active life-consuming fetish League of Legends, left me plugging into games for 8-14 hour days regularly for over a decade!!
Well, at least you played different games. I did the same, but I was playing the same 1 - 2 games for years : Street Fighter 4, VS CPU again and again for hours, days and years...., same opponents, same combos, same outcome....the sense of "achievement", as you said, felt great doing a combo followed by flashy finishing moves....But in reality, I'm still the same me, only worse. Ever since I quit video games, my life changed for the better. I'm at the point where I hate games, dislike people playing games, hate game studios, dislike game developers etc.

Btw, you're from CA? I see there's a lot of corgis in CA, based on what I see on Instagram! They seem to be a very popular breed with asian-americans.
 

waveman

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Welcome and I'm looking forward to what you've got in store for us!

While I empathize with you (did absolutely zero with my life for a year and a half while grinding Dota 24/7 and invading people in Dark Souls), I'm on the other side of the fence of the forum consensus, in a way. I game fairly often, but avoid anything ranked for obvious reasons. I've answered the "why" behind why I do gaming as a hobby- knowing and understanding why I like it besides saying "it's fun". If you have a "why", that's not something someone can "objectively" argue against, take away from you, and it grounds you more in yourself, if that makes sense.

From the sounds of it and based on what you play, you really no longer enjoy it so you made the right decision quitting. As general food for thought, I'd highly recommend this gold thread for some thoughts on work/grinding/stress from someone who pushed the limits.

Ultimately, just ensure you're being honest with who you really want to be every step of the way, and remain consistent with your action taking- put your plan in motion.
 

visiomari

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Hey, welcome! I’m semi new here too.

Congratulations on putting the video games away, that’s huge first step. I can totally relate with reading endlessly as an action-fake. Or just wasting time in general. Over time, I have made small (but impactful) changes to get me to stop wasting so much time. I stopped posting on social media, but kept lurking. Then slowly I deleted the Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat apps from my phone.
This is embarrassing, but I’ll share: I stopped visiting a gossip forum I used to frequent. Yikes.

I recently deleted Reddit app too. I had convinced myself it’s “fun and educative” but I would waste SO much time just scrolling through threads. I told myself, ENOUGH! You have read enough random crap to last a lifetime. You’ve read enough about some random celebrity who doesn’t even know you exist.

I just opened the YouTube app and the first video was, “what Selena Gomez thinks about haily Baldwin and Justin Bieber’s engagement.” I was like, WTF! I don’t care! And closed the app right away.

Now the trick to sticking with this is to find something else to fill your newfound free time with. My “something else” is doing something actionable towards my fastlane idea (s) and I don’t mean endless research, but something that will actually move the needle ever so slightly forward.
 

Everyman

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scott wisniewsk

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I can relate to your gaming addiction. I was the same as you only with watching TV ( old fart ) grew up with it , no games back then . It has a strong pull . Once you get momentum going in the right direction there's no stopping you . It will feel so much better to be away from that waste of life . Glad your woke up and you've grown up a little . Now get going and kick some a$$ , you just started the rest of your life make it good were watching !
 

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MILIANARD134

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hey man,as i had the same problem earlier in my life(i mean video games), i think i can help you.
I'm not a fastlaner or something like that, i just hustle for a living. But i will really enjoy having a call with you and figure out some problem i think you still have, and the best one is OVERTHINKING.

Feel free to pm me and we could schedule a whatsapp/skype call i don't know.
Best regards
 

TheOrchestrator

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I wish it was possible to be as addicted to business as it is to games and other stuff.

That way no one would be struggling with this stuff so much.
Who knows, maybe just becoming "addicted to providing value" is all one needs, right?
 
OP
OP
Cognitive Corgi

Cognitive Corgi

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Thank you so much everyone for your stories and helpful comments! I really appreciate all of you who took the time to read. Keeping as much valueable advice as I can moving forward. Sorry if I'm not able to directly respond to everyone who posts here.

Responding to a few folks

Wow @TheOrchestrator, what a thoughtful and invested response!
Changing my environment is a really needed one, thanks. Heeded your advice earlier today and just went ahead and made a new google account! One log into youtube and almost every suggestion I had before was related to gaming, yikes.
The only scary thing is changing my peer group. The biggest fear is that I don't really have anything to offer as some person who just came out of hiding essentially. I don't want to take people's resources or burden them. Though the best way to give more to others would probably be to become more educated and create value without seeking to reciprocate. I took some creative writing extra curricular classes, so maybe I could get into copy writing and offer free services to those looking to get their businesses started. There's so many options it's a little overwhelming, so the best step would probably be absorbing material in the Gold articles for about a week and taking some smaller actionable steps towards either helping others create their businesses or becoming more skillful at superior-product distribution.
Though I still feel like I'm picking ideas out of a hat and almost disingenuous by throwing around 'helping others create their business~' when I'm not even sure what I'm up to yet myself. Still, as long as I'm actively improving and assessing and really keep the people first it should all pan out hopefully.
Thanks again for your thorough reply!

@Bearcorp Good advice. Even though it's kind of hard not to be too harsh on oneself for pissing away so much time, you're certainly correct here. Getting lost in all the "Oh man if only I would have buckled down and done this earlier instead.." fretting is just throwing away good time for bad.

@lowtek Will check out Lex Deville's threads today, thank you. And you're right about focusing on making what I can. Now more than anything I realize that doing nothing is worth nothing. Going to get the ball rolling within a week and put plans into action- no matter how small at first.

Thanks @Kak, will do. Good on you and your wife for making your time even more productive!

@Xeon Great to hear you broke free from that intense gaming cycle. I know exactly what vs CPU sessions you're talking about, I owned SF5 and did some to practice before matches! I could never get decent footsies with my Chunli save for memorizing a few basic combos. I jumped WAY too often.
And definitely, Corgis are so big in California they just recently had Corgicon 2018 in San Francisco!

@waveman No worries, waveman! Having hobbies isn't a bad thing unless it becomes an all-encompassing demand that deteriorates areas of personal life. It certainly reached that point for me. I'd often miss meals and would avoid phone calls until the late evening to keep on gaming.

@visiomari Ah, welcome to the group as well! Can definitely relate to the over-analyzing, I'm still trying to get over reading things endlessly myself. "The perfect is the enemy of the good", I suppose. And nice that you got rid of your reddit, I also had to stop looking at so many 'educational' youtube videos and fascinating fact countdowns that don't serve or improve my life in any way.

@Everyman I managed to read 100+ books because during one of my major motivational procrastionation-fests at 18, I bumped into Jim Rohn who planted the seed in me of adding value to the marketplace instead of demanding it provide me all my needs. I rented a couple library books and listened to plenty of audiobooks/youtube videos on entrepreneurship and physics over the next few years- often while playing games or during gaming breaks.

@El Príncipe @MILIANARD134 @scott wisniewsk Thank you all for your encouraging words! And thanks a bunch for your offer Milianard, that's awesome of you!

Hm @Ayanle Farah. That would be really nice, though I guess it's much more difficult to become addicted to singing while I'm focusing on being a bad singer. Perhaps it's much harder becoming hooked on the outcome of entrepreneurship starting out than it is becoming hooked on the process of entrepreneurship? Don't be too concerned if we can't knockout Mike Tyson our first month, but do be concerned if we're preparing for tomorrow by eating Twinkies instead of hitting the gym sort of thing.
Then again, my reflections currently aren't worth as much as a lot of the advice from proven-successful business owners on this site. Going to hold back on suggestions until I can speak from a "how I did it" perspective.
 
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Late Bloomer

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Welcome to the forum and thanks for your honesty. I agree with the advice, especially Orchestrator's about not reading more books for now, because that's also a way to be introverted inside your own mental echo chamber.

If you have a high-end gaming rig, would it be prudent to sell it and buy a machine everyone knows is just good enough for office software, but lousy for games?

Would it help to install a completely different browser, so that you have no bookmarks at all? (Write down your forum password so you can get back on here and bookmark it of course!)

Do you have a day job? Do you need one?

I agree with the suggestions about meetups. Get out of the house and in circulation in the world of people you talk with in person. If you have social anxiety, do a web search for a free tutorial about baby steps to overcome social anxiety, and listen to Andy Black's recorded calls until you start to feel, "I could talk to people like that too." Join Toastmasters and go through the first year's program on speaking and on running meetings. Visit some 12 step groups and decide whether or not that's a helpful approach to you.

How's your health? Do you need an exercise program? Do you know how to cook?
 

MJ DeMarco

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That way no one would be struggling with this stuff so much.
My guess would be because you haven't had your feedback loop connected and then tickled. That's how it starts.

Video games connect feedback loops with reinforcement heuristics ... gold, levels, fake achievements, finding solutions, fixing failure.

Real life is the same way ...

It's just isn't as easy as pressing "reset" while failing anonymously from the comfort of your couch. You gotta keep pressing until the loop is connected.
 

Out of Touch

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You know the story about Greek generals burning their ships behind them after landing on enemy shores right? The way back is no option. Victory or death.

That's the strategy you gotta take. I've been there.
I believe that it was Allen Carr (who wrote about quitting smoking, though his methods could apply to any addiction) who explained the inefficiency of quitting something in a spread amount of time. I.e. Quitting gaming for one week, then moving on to two weeks, etc. When you do something like that, you aren't really killing your addiction but merely starving it. And boy does your addiction remain hungry. Withdrawal pangs are painful and you endure all that time just for that one gaming session to get your neural 'water-slide' that your brain set up from previous sessions all greased up and surging with dopamine. Of course, once that dopamine rush fades, all that comes to you is an empty and miserable feeling that turns the cog, repeating the cycle. A good way at looking at it is picturing yourself in 30 years. Would you still be enduring painful withdrawal pangs for weeks/months only to reinforce your addiction with another session? You have to come to the understanding that this addiction has the possibility of remaining an addiction for life. That's definitely a scary thought that can propel anyone to action.
-------
@Cognitive Corgi By burning down your ships and uninstalling all of your games, you took the best possible step at beating this addiction for life. Make sure that you prevent yourself from reinstalling those games when you get hit by withdrawal pangs. Your dopamine 'water-slide' will eventually fade away. Just endure heartily for now.
I wish you all the best with this and all your Fastlane endeavors!
 

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Last edited:

PureA

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My guess would be because you haven't had your feedback loop connected and then tickled. That's how it starts.

Video games connect feedback loops with reinforcement heuristics ... gold, levels, fake achievements, finding solutions, fixing failure.

Real life is the same way ...

It's just isn't as easy as pressing "reset" while failing anonymously from the comfort of your couch. You gotta keep pressing until the loop is connected.
gold
 

Miorin

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I know how you feel about the video-game addiction, I was addicted too. I "snorted" video-games 100h+/week consistently. 30hours straight some weekends. The cycle:

School, video-games, sleep -
School, video-games, sleep -
And then
School, video-games, 4chan, Facebook (i used a fake to shitpost) and sleep -

upload_2018-7-13_8-23-18.png
(I also had Platinum 1 on LoL) - I wasted 5.000+ Hours on the drug.

I play video-games since 3yo, I'm 17 now, and I don't remember almost anything from my childhood because everyday was the same. No friends, no girlfriend (my first kiss was a month ago, kek)



I erased video-games from my life, 137 days off.
I also did this with facebook and 4chan.



Was it easy?
Yes.
Because I knew how to do it.
And now you are going to learn it.

When We Use Willpower to Quit, We Fail

Statistically speaking, if you use only willpower to quit your addiction, you have 0-10% chance of succeeding.

A 2005 article in Fast Company reported on patients who had severe heart disease and needed to make major lifestyle changes to avoid surgery and stay alive. After 12 months, and despite the risks, only 10 percent of the patients had successfully resisted their bad habits.

When using willpower to quit, we find life extremely unpleasant and difficult and have to be cautious all the time to prevent relapse. This is because the desire to do the habit always remains inside us.

10% of former smokers who abstained from smoking for ten years showed ongoing cravings even years later. Mere abstinence does not mean we have broken our habit. It just means we don’t allow ourselves to do our habit. A person who does not drink alcohol but who is constantly thinking about alcohol is not a non-alcoholic but is an alcoholic who does not let himself drink.

We see the benefits of breaking our habits but also believe it provides us with something which we are now depriving ourselves of. This makes us miserable, vulnerable and increases desire that begins to obsess us. We try to overcome this by not thinking about our craving but that only makes us more obsessed.

Believing our problems can be easily solved by doing our bad habits we begin to question our decision to break our bad habits. Finally, we accept defeat and cave in. This minor relapse makes us feel bad and we indulge in the very same habit that made us feel bad, to feel better.

We fail to break our bad habits not because we lack willpower but because we don’t eliminate desire. Without desire, willpower is not required to stop, just as it doesn’t take willpower to not do the things we have no desire to do.

Break The Habit By Seeing The Reward As An Illusion

The first step to breaking your bad habit is identifying the reward.

What do you really get doing your habit?

If the rewards you think your habits provided were actually real, then you can break your bad habits, simply by switching your existing habit with a healthier behaviour that provided the same reward. For example, if you play video-games for improvement, then you can break your habit simply by replacing it with a healthier improvement - Mine was reading self-improvement blogs and taking action on it, IDK If I can share them here. IMPORTANT: I was not reading it to action fake, but to really to get a real improvement by taking massive action.
This is the premise of the book “The Power of Habit” and this works well for weaker habits. But try telling a smoker to resist his urge for smoking when he is bored by entertaining himself on YouTube. He won’t be a successful non-smoker for very long. This is because most rewards of our habits are illusions.

We often rationalize why we do our bad habits but all the reasons we use to justify our behaviour are an illusion, excuses, fallacies or based on myth. For example, smokers believe they need cigarettes to relax, relieve stress, to concentrate or to relieve boredom. But cigarettes do not give them any of this. If it did, they should be a lot more relaxed, focused and less bored than non-smokers.

Most of us brainwash ourselves in a certain way that keeps us doing our bad habits. Only by identifying what we think is the reward can we address and remove the myths we have about the reward. When we begin to see through the illusory rewards, we eliminate desire by realizing that there is nothing to give up.

Only you can identify your false reward. Mine was the feeling of being a badass for hitting high ranks on games and the feeling of improvement. Pathetic. My life dream was hitting challenger, my new year's resolution for 2018? Hit Diamond 1 until the end of the year.
Thank god I got lucky and I got by accident on a self-development blog and got hooked on it. (thank you, Ludvig)

>not even because I was actively enjoying the games anymore, but because I needed some shallow sense of accomplishment.

Maybe can be that, the sense of accomplishment.

What We Give Up When We Break Bad Habits?
What are we giving up when we break our bad habits? Well, most of the time you are giving up absolutely nothing.

We don’t do our bad habits for pleasure. We do it to feel normal. This feels like pleasure. A drug addict feels miserable, anxious, stressed and angry when he is deprived of his drug. When he shoots up his drug, he gets relief from all the negative symptoms. The subsequent dose partially relieves the symptoms but also ensures that the addict goes through withdrawal again. This keeps the addict stuck in the vicious habit loop. Normal people do not experience the symptoms of the drug addict. When we look at this it is obvious to us that the symptoms the drug addict experiences are caused by the drug, not removed by it. But we fail to have the same understanding when it comes to our bad habits.

Our bad habits cause symptoms of craving that normal people don’t experience. We do our bad habits to partially relieve the symptoms but it only keeps us stuck in the vicious habit loop ensuring we experience the symptoms of craving again.

Unlike drug addiction which might require a visit to rehab, the craving caused by most bad habits including alcohol and smoking can be killed immediately when the belief system is changed. If you are not entirely convinced that there is nothing to give up, you need to examine the rewards of your bad habits and see them for what they really are. Otherwise, you will feel craving and will have to use willpower to prevent relapse.

The 4 Illusory Rewards
If you think your habit provides any of the following 5 rewards, you probably have an illusory reward:

  1. Relieves stress
  2. Relieves boredom
  3. Improves concentration
  4. Relieves anxiety and gives confidence
We will address the common myths people have about each of these rewards which will help dispel the illusion.

Reward 1 - Relief From Stress & Relaxation
For many, habits provide relaxation and relief from stress. We all have several things stressing us out. Not just big tragedies but relatively minor things like work deadlines. We do our bad habits to relieve this stress and the stress does seem to go away. But what has really happened?

Apart from the environmental stress, we experience additional stress because of the aggravation caused by craving. Bad habits relieve this portion of stress it created through craving. But our real-world stress like work deadlines continues to exist. When we do our habits we feel better able to cope with this stress because we temporarily don’t have the additional stress caused by the craving to deal with.

A study has shown that we fall back into our habits when we are stressed because we feel less anxiety and more in control when we do our habits. People who have been sober for years relapse when a major life catastrophe happens like a death of a loved one or divorce. This is because of a failure to understand that alcohol does not relieve stress but only adds to the problem.

The habits that we fall back on during times of stress need not be bad. In a study, students who habitually ate a healthy breakfast continued to eat healthy during the stressful period of their exams. Whereas students who gained extra weight during their exams had a habit of eating unhealthy. Consciously engineering your habits is important so that your habits make you better and not worse during times of stress.

Reward 2 - Relief From Boredom
Some people do their habit because they are bored, and that may be the case for you. Boredom is a frame of mind and not a physical condition that can be cured. Initially, we are bored. Now we are bored and engaged in self-destructive behaviour. Our bad habits do not cure boredom. It just creates a temporary distraction that allows us to forget that we are bored.

If our bad habits did relieve boredom, then why do we have to engage in it multiple times or do it for longer periods at a stretch?

Most bad habits rob us of our energy and make us more lethargic, putting us in a state of mind where we cannot do anything else, homeostasis. Bad news, homeostasis is self-sustainable.
- Good Read: Breaking out of Homeostasis -
Instead of doing something when bored like how a normal person would, we lounge around, do our bad habit and feel more bored.

If you know someone who plays excessive video games or who spends hours in front of the TV, you will see they are not any less bored. They will be extremely tired and will feel like shit for wasting so much time.

Reward 3 - Helps Concentration & Removes Mental Block
If you think your bad habits removes mental blocks and improves concentration, then you are not alone. Some of the greatest artists of the world including Van Gogh and Beethoven were addicts. But curing addiction does not lower creativity because your genes do not change. It is just your craving that goes away. So what really happens?

A study done on 96 undergraduates showed a reduction in the student’s ability to do tasks that required visuospatial memory, when they experienced craving for chocolate. In other words, craving negatively affected the student’s ability to remember.

Our bad habits cause craving which creates a distraction that makes it difficult to concentrate. When we need to concentrate we do our habits to eliminate the distraction caused by our craving. We give credit to our bad habits for helping us concentrate when it was responsible for the distraction to begin with. People without bad habits will not have problems with concentration because they don’t experience the craving.

Over time people who believe that their bad habits help them concentrate begin to believe that it removes mental blocks. After you do your bad habits, your block will still exist, but only now you will get the job done just like how anybody would have done it. But your bad habits get the credit for helping you get the work done.

Your bad habits provide no mental performance advantage and believing it does is based on fallacy and myth.

Reward 4 - Confidence & Anxiety Relief
We acknowledge the relief provided by our bad habit as it removes the small amount of emptiness and insecurity. But we don’t acknowledge that this emptiness and insecurity are the symptoms of our bad habits in the first place.

People who have had their bad habits for many decades have been in a perpetual state of anxiety and emptiness so their bad habits seem to be the only way to get confidence and a relief from this feeling. Our bad habits do not relieve the anxiety in our lives, it causes it. People without bad habits never feel this insecurity or anxiety, to begin with.

Freedom from the self-loathing and dependency is one of the biggest positive changes people see in their lives when they break their habits. They are more relaxed and confident after breaking their bad habits and are better able to deal with their anxieties if it is not gone altogether.

Relief From Craving is The Only Reward
Craving and withdrawal can make you insecure, irritable, anxious or agitated. Though there is no physical pain, it causes mental agony giving us a feeling that something is not right. For example, smokers believe that withdrawal is a physical trauma caused by not satisfying their craving. But eight hours after putting out the last cigarette, a smoker is 97% nicotine-free. This happens every night during sleep. Only during the day does he feel the need to smoke every hour to fix his craving. After three days of not smoking, a smoker is 100% nicotine-free. Yet smokers relapse because of craving after months of abstinence.j The truth is withdrawal and craving is almost always psychological even for smokers & alcoholics.

We associate our bad habits with pleasure because we see them satisfy our craving, but don’t see them causing it. Our craving is not cured by our bad habits but is caused by it.

We might have started doing our bad habits for many reasons, but the only reason why we keeping doing them is to feed the craving. Every time we do our habit, the craving is satisfied temporarily. This provides a temporary relief, putting us in a normal state of mind. But by doing our habit, we have set ourselves up to experience craving again in the future. The more we feed our craving, the more it takes to satisfy it. Hardcore video-gamers who quit cold turkey and then relapse, they are bound to play mindlessly 10-16 hours again. It happened to me when I first tried to quit video-games and I relapsed after 2 months, I played 16h/day for 2 weeks. I failed because I didn't have any strategy.

“Ultimately it’s the desire, not the desired, that we love.” - Friedrich Nietzsche
What we really enjoy is not our bad habits but the feeling we get when our craving is satisfied. It is like putting on tight shoes just for the pleasure of taking them off. This is why by breaking bad habits, you are giving up nothing.

Hidden Drivers of Bad Habits
Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) have a concept called dry drunk, where alcoholics stop drinking but still remain angry, selfish and narcissistic. Our bad habits are often symptoms of some inner conflict. Things like anger, shame, loneliness, fear and hopelessness that makes people start doing their bad habits, needs to be addressed first. Until the flawed beliefs are fixed, we will always remain vulnerable to relapse. The habit of procrastination, for example, can be fixed only temporarily, if the underlying fear of failure is left unaddressed.

Bad habits are a way for our sub-conscious mind to avoid the real inner conflict that exists inside us. The inner conflict is either a bitter truth (“I am ashamed of my past”) or a distorted assumption (“I screw up everything” or “I am better than everybody”). This inner conflict is never a mystery but we make it a mystery because acknowledging the truth is uncomfortable. It is easier to think we have no choice or control over our lives than it is to take responsibility for fixing it.

The best way to fix inner conflicts is through therapy or self-hypnosis (I used a lot to fight facebook addiction) which works by bringing our inner conflict to light causing them to vaporize like a vampire. The next best way is service. Helping others has helped AA members reduce their desire to drink. A study of 195 addicted adolescents showed that treatment showed substantial improvement when it was accompanied by service. This works because love neutralizes shame and service to others reduce obsession and craving by eliminating the inner conflict. Helpfulness may not help break bad habits by itself, but it addresses the internal conflicts that create craving.

Sorry if I made any grammatical mistakes, English isn't my mother language. I'm currently learning it. (I'm from Brazil)

Now get your a$$ off your F*cking chair and take massive action.
It's not just about growing your business, but about improving yourself first so you can create value - This includes knowledge.

Don't stop reading. But start taking action on what you read.

Don't read BS, try to find the gold books like the UNSCRIPTED or Fastlane.

How will you add value without educating yourself or building your skills?

And, don't forget what you read, start a digital commonplace.
 
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Will-v-the-World

Bronze Contributor
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I used to be an extreme gamer. In fact, I’d play games every hour I wasn’t eating, sleeping, or at school. I couldn’t stop.

However, I quit gaming, and I did it in ONE DAY.

How did I end a life-long addiction in one day?

Easy. I found my PURPOSE. My “why”. My reason for living life and what I want to accomplish and do for humanity.

I also strongly believed that I could fulfill my purpose, which is CRUCIAL. If you don’t believe that you have the ability to impact your own future, YOU WILL NEVER be able to quit gaming. You have to realize that the choices you make every 24 hours have a direct impact on the situation you end up in. It doesn’t matter what your current situation is. Ugly, fat, lazy, whatever. EMBRACE THE GROWTH MINDSET.

Once you find your purpose and realize that you have the ability to reach your goals, you will never play video games again. They won’t align with your life goal and if you attempt to play them again before you reach your goal, you will feel like you’re wasting your time doing nothing of value. Then you’ll go back to the grind because you’ll no longer be a time-waster.
 

TheOrchestrator

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Guys, the reason that posts like mine, @Late Bloomer, and a few others are less informational and more action-focused is because we are talking about someone who has already read TONS of self-help books and scoured blog after blog, and probably has subscribed to various self-help writers. Heck, he's even reading Unscripted right now. When it comes to actual addiction, the problem is rarely, if ever, ignorance. We're talking about something that has now rooted itself deep into your neurology, and operates mostly on a subconscious level, making it almost as basic as breathing. At that point, the only way to deal with this is to take quick desperate action immediately while your mind is clear and you are still in a strong and motivated state. This is often why a lot of "turnaround" stories happen after a person wakes up in the morning, full of willpower and a clear mind. Sure, willpower is overrated and not useful for sustaining long-term behavior, but it's perfectly suited for quick bursts of action against your natural inclinations. He doesn't need to know anything else, he just needs to act.

- Act fast and act hard. Don't think. Just act.
- Get accountable. This is not something you should try to do alone (and if you can't find someone you trust to hold you accountable, seek professional help).
- Change your environment, including your social circles (this one is MASSIVE).

- Then focus on following all of the stuff you already know about how to improve your habits (use accountability to accelerate this).

For instance, while some may think that just dumping his Google account (since he couldn't figure out how to stop the game ads) was drastic, that's the type of action you need to take when you are talking about real addiction. Remember that show "Intervention"? Think about how they trick the person into walking into an emotional meeting full of friends and family who do everything they can to pressure the addict to take action right now, giving him very little time to think about it. They've already set things up with the rehab facility and have already paid for everything. Heck, they often already have the addict's clothes packed and a car with a driver waiting for him outside! That's real action. When you are truly addicted to something, you can't just "habit-change" your way out of it, despite what many will try to tell you. Try telling a heroine addict that he just needs to read more James Clear blog posts on habits...

So no. No more education right now. Jim Rohn and Tony Robbins can't help him. @Cognitive Corgi pretty much knows it all, already. It will just devolve into another action-fake and delay real results.

@Cognitive Corgi, I'm going to reach out to you privately this weekend so we can see where you are, and if there's any way that I can help you. I really want you to win this, man.
 

GoGetter24

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The question I always ask in these situations is: what is the mum doing?

Like, how much self harm was she willing to permit her son to inflict on himself? If he was on her couch and injecting heroin, would that be too far? Where's the line?

Parents man. "Want whats best for you", or outright bad people? If you were in my house I'd have smashed your laptop before you got to even 4 hours a day.

Perhaps you should enlist in the army or something. I don't see how further interacting with a computer and the internet, which is what you're doing in posting this thread (probably in between PUBG sessions), is corrective action. You should put your computer in a lockup somewhere for a couple of months, or just drive over it, whichever.

If you don't put down this needle, now, total cold turkey, you'll pass 30 exactly the same. It'll be a blink of the eye. Put a hammer through that F*cking thing.
 

MILIANARD134

Bronze Contributor
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Mar 22, 2018
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Here is a record i did a 2 hour ago.
I know maybe no one will listen it, but if one of you guys who are suffering from these type or addiction or problems just listen 5 minutes of it. I consider myself happy.

By the way i'm french so don't blame my poor accent please :)))
Hope u guys really understand that u need a game changer and a F*cking kick a$$, and i really agree with @GoGetter24 posts.

It's really the truth.
Thoughts On Life And Video Game Addiction
 

Mainstream7

Beauty is Truth
Jan 1, 2015
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Did you deinstall everything yet?

It´s hard to give up your Platin 1 ranking or your Max level hero with max level equipment.
Try to sell your characters or so, so you don´t feel bad.
Tell your friends you aren´t gaming anymore. They will understand and don´t force you to.
 

Determined2012

Silver Contributor
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Jun 22, 2012
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I wish it was possible to be as addicted to business as it is to games and other stuff.

That way no one would be struggling with this stuff so much.
Grant Cardone was addicted to drugs. He said once he found out how to channel his addictive and obsessive personality into his business goals he began to experience explosive success...(He got off drugs too)
 
OP
OP
Cognitive Corgi

Cognitive Corgi

Contributor
Jul 5, 2018
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what is your plan of action?

how can you make $1 in the next 30 days?
I haven't decided on my vehicle yet.
Your implication is clear here. Don't spend all day doing nothing and using 'getting ready' as a way to BS myself. There's a fine line between preparation and action-faking. I've done so in the past.

To combat this, I'll announce my vehicle of choice here or elsewhere in this forum when I have chosen it by the 18th (deadline). I don't want to take six months planning and collecting pages of unapplied advice.

WHAT IM DOING

WORK-RELATED: I'll do the best 'valuable idea' for two weeks, full force. Then take one week to assess feedback, improve my craft, make something more valuable, review plans, what have you. Then repeat. If I were to choose mowing lawns, I would knock doors or leave flyers on unkempt lawns and look to trim yards for a fair price. Take some time off to assess feedback/get faster at mowing/leave little notes for customers thanking them/small ways to set myself apart and make the people I'm dealing with feel appreciated and not just another number.
The perfect plan isn't the goal here so much as getting myself MOVING.

My first benchmark is to get to $1300 a month to become non-dependant. Either by my full-time muse/business model/service or by getting a temporary part-time while using nearly all my spare time improving myself as a value provider.


SOCIALLY:
Clean sweep. Lowering all communication outside of family and the fastlane forum by 90%.
No messenger apps for now, no endless texting, I already don't use twitter and facebook much so pretty good there. I would take up a huge amount of time everyday rambling or talking about gaming and art-related things with friends, but one of those is harmful and one cannot serve me currently. Instead I've taken some of @Late Bloomer 's advice yesterday. Called two local entrepreneur-based toastmaster clubs and attending next week, done. Spending 80% of all my waking time on these forums the past few days to shift myself out of the social cycle I trapped myself with. Looking for other local areas to significantly change my peer group. I'll practice giving unreciprocated value by being a strong helpful toastmasters member. If anyone is less inclined computer-wise, I can help them fix electronics and setup websites.

(Good to note: I am close to Silicon Valley and San Francisco so there's lots of meetups for in-person entrepreneurship/coding/sales events! )

[1] If you have a high-end gaming rig, would it be prudent to sell it and buy a machine everyone knows is just good enough for office software, but lousy for games?

Would it help to install a completely different browser, so that you have no bookmarks at all? (Write down your forum password so you can get back on here and bookmark it of course!)

[2] Do you have a day job? Do you need one?

[3] I agree with the suggestions about meetups. Get out of the house and in circulation in the world of people you talk with in person. If you have social anxiety, do a web search for a free tutorial about baby steps to overcome social anxiety, and listen to Andy Black's recorded calls until you start to feel, "I could talk to people like that too." Join Toastmasters and go through the first year's program on speaking and on running meetings. Visit some 12 step groups and decide whether or not that's a helpful approach to you.

[4] How's your health? Do you need an exercise program? Do you know how to cook?
1) Talked to my friend about your comment yesterday, and will consider it! I also have an HD Camera I could sell. Could easily round up about 800 dollars if needed for startup capital.


2) short answer: Yup! Temporarily, to sustain myself. Ideally I'd love to just pour all my time into some self-started improved product or venture.

long answer: Considering a part-time to make sure I'm living independently. It would be very nice helping my folks a bit financially as well.

I'm very strongly considering sales as I have some background in that. There are those cliche'd stories of entrepreneurs starting off by selling candy bars, and I sold over 5000 bars my senior school year! It was a new closed-campus policy to stop our large school from leaving to the corner store for snacks during lunch, and I smelled the opportunity. I'd bring four boxes of Capri Suns and 150 candies I'd purchase at a special discount I worked out with a small grocery store for buying in $250+ bulk with them. I'd sell a $1.75 Capri Sun box for 5 dollars each, and 40-cent candy bars for a dollar each. I'd give free candies to my top buyers and mark what I was actually selling at the end of the week using my receipts and remaining inventory. There was one notable day I remember walking into school with a single quarter and leaving with 227 dollars!

I also can take apart/rebuild desktop computers from scratch and used to make money repairing people's electronics for competitively-reduced prices. My mom even had a home dog grooming business that I would pass out flyers for door-to-door 15+ hours a week before the city halted for being unregistered a few months ago.

My folks are hard workers, both very good people. Mom groomed 30 years. Dad did alarms on 10-hour shifts 35 years. Neither made too much money and their jobs are capped by hours. I don't mind starting there, but would love to move into entrepreneurship.


3) The meetups would be very helpful for changing my peer group. Joining Toastmasters! I'll certainly keep 12 steps in mind after I try really exhausting this path of hard-redirecting myself.

4) My health shockingly is really good. 5'10, 148 pounds, doctor last month said my body is in excellent shape. I'm vegetarian considering vegan, high fiber high nutrient diet with a lot of healthy greens and nuts and fruits! Run two miles every day including the past few days. Had a bike that I'd ride on for miles daily before it broke in April, and would love to perform in a cycling event! One day I biked 34 miles because I felt bad for missing a week of jogging. I usually make my own meals, and love cooking for my friends when I can!

@Miorin @Out of Touch @Will-v-the-World @MILIANARD134 Thank you so much for your helpful comments as well! All of you have put a lot of effort into responding, I appreciate that!
 

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