NickG

Gaming Disrupting Thinking And Meditation

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Hellow everybody, this is my first post here! 

I have been watching a lot of Leo's videos and I see a lot of truth in his reflections. I want to be more like him and be truly happy. 

I have been struggling with quitting my game addiction for a while now. Since 3-4 years ago I decided I had to quit games, but I relapsed a few times. Sometimes, I achieved to be "clean" for 1 year, other for 40 days,... I had a big problem with productivity, but now I'm very productive... But sometimes I only feel like just playing. 

What I observed, in myself, is that when I relapse I inmediatelly stop wanting to meditate (and stop meditating, of course). What is even more interesting is, now I'm more conscious about that, that my thoughts are more loose and hiperactive throught all the day, but they are very notable when I'm trying to meditate; it's a lot harder to focus. I get something called "tetris effect" after playing very little.

Do you guys experienced the same? 

I ask this because I don't know if I'm just being obsessive, or overthink, and blame games instead. I always loved to play games but I want to keep away myself from the crazy monkey mind. Which I notice everytime I want to meditate after playing the day before. 

Thank you. 

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On 29/07/2017 at 7:37 AM, NickG said:

Hellow everybody, this is my first post here! 

I have been watching a lot of Leo's videos and I see a lot of truth in his reflections. I want to be more like him and be truly happy. 

I have been struggling with quitting my game addiction for a while now. Since 3-4 years ago I decided I had to quit games, but I relapsed a few times. Sometimes, I achieved to be "clean" for 1 year, other for 40 days,... I had a big problem with productivity, but now I'm very productive... But sometimes I only feel like just playing. 

What I observed, in myself, is that when I relapse I inmediatelly stop wanting to meditate (and stop meditating, of course). What is even more interesting is, now I'm more conscious about that, that my thoughts are more loose and hiperactive throught all the day, but they are very notable when I'm trying to meditate; it's a lot harder to focus. I get something called "tetris effect" after playing very little.

Do you guys experienced the same? 

I ask this because I don't know if I'm just being obsessive, or overthink, and blame games instead. I always loved to play games but I want to keep away myself from the crazy monkey mind. Which I notice everytime I want to meditate after playing the day before. 

Thank you. 

I have nearly the same problem, but with watching animes. What I do is, when I want to meditate but am too restless to mediate, I watch meditation episodes from Leo like 'dark side of meditation', 'meditation for beginners', or any other enlightenment related videos. Those take me out of that restless state and motivate me to meditate. 


"Wanting keeps me from the awareness I already have it. I already am it.” — Byron Katie

 

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@NickG Gaming and gambling addiction have similar triggers - boredom.

Meditation without a reason can become boring.

Boredom can be caused be wanting to be distracted but it's not happening. So gaming addiction fulfills that distraction.

Seeking distraction from what? Self. The truth about yourself. The fear of being/feeling vulnerable and/or exposed.

Why not used meditation and introspection for discovering your truth. Instead of being a gaming legend in your own mind, you can become a true courageous person in facing all your fears and emerging fearless and true...the person you always wanted to be. This won't happen over night. Many fear facing campaigns to follow through to be the victor over your own fears. It won't be easy, just like a gaming challenge. If it was easy, everybody would be doing it. If you decide to do this, you will be the game to play and win.

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@NickG Hey :)

I have also had a serious videogame addiction about 10 years ago. I played World of Warcraft 14-16 hours per day.

Here are my tips how to have a healthy relationship with gaming. And by healthy I mean if you like gaming, you will be able to play every now and then but will still manage to be productive as fuck.

First you want to consciously choose which game you want to play in your free time. I would recommend not picking any games that have to be played for a long period of time, otherwise they suck you in. E.g. WoW (you have to play a lot to achieve anything) or Leauge of Legends (each match lasts 30 minutes on average). I would recommend something like Overwatch (10 minutes per match) or COD (10 minutes per match) or something similar. Don't have too much games installed. Ideally only 1 or 2 that you consciously chose to keep. Delete all other games.

Second you want to make a choice. Consciously choose to not play more than 1 hour a day, no matter which day of the week it is. Also consciously make a choice to only allow you to play when you achieved something that day. If you like gaming, give it to your brain as a treat for good work. Similar like you would do it with candy, a new toy or something similar. Remember: You make this choice for you. Do not follow this guide for any other reason. If you want to change, you are responsible. Make sure to be extra productive every day from now on. Do all the work during the day so you can game in the evening for a little bit without feeling bad.

Third become conscious of the fact that gaming has little upsides. If you deserved it, if you have been productive, a game gives you fun and relaxes you. A game will not get you further in your life. Make this mental link between stagnation and gaming, now!

Fourth reduce your consumption of gaming related media. If you don't watch YT (or other) videos about gaming it will become less appealing to you. Our brain is dumb. What's focal, seems causal. In other words, if you consume a lot of gaming related media, gaming will seem more important. You can diminish this effect (and even use it to your advantage) by watching productive stuff (if at all).

Fifth make a public commitment to not play more than 1 hour of games per day. As soon as you make the decision to reduce your gaming habit, call your mum and tell her you decision, now. Also tell your friends about it. Make it clear how important this is to you. This social pressure will help you to stick to your commitment with ease.

Sixth realize how your mind works. If you switch concentration from one thing to another, it takes you about 15 minutes to become absorbed in the task again. From now on, if you work on something make and set an alarm for 60 minutes and work those 60 minutes through without distracting. Ignore E-mails, facebook or anything. If the bell rings you may distract yourself for a little bit. Split your work in high concentration 60 minute sessions. Your work output will sky rocket.

If you follow these steps you will soon realize how you will become very picky with gaming. It's almost like you will not want to spent your time gaming. In a bit you will value your time much more. You will still enjoy gaming, but in a conscious way. You will decide how much you game.

Edited by Geromekevin

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I've wasted thousands of hours in tv, anime, porn, games, eating etc over decades now. One thing I know is that these are your input into your body and mind.
1) Food and drink
2) Any visual( tv, movie, porn, games etc) and informational (news, gossip, trivia etc) input
3) Your own thinking and how you capture others thinking from your surrounding + all your beliefs

The harsh truth is, if you wanna be enlightened and/or have a clean, fulfilling, independent and highly conscious life (which can take decade to build) then you gotta limit all your input. Seriously man. Especially in this toxic modern culture over 99% of input is pure shit that keeps you stuck in the same rut. Then one day you find yourself losing decades in this mindless cycle.

If you do hours of gaming and then sit for meditate, hell yeah all the gaming visions are gonna keep popping up. This shit is never gonna fly.

Limit every single of your life's input. Just take the bare minimum and high quality inputs. The rest is all contemplation/being/mindfulness. No easy way out! But unfortunately, nobody wants to accept this...not until they are dead tired of their own rut. Good luck on your journey! 


''Not this...

Not this...

PLEASE...Not this...''

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 Hey man.

This is  a little insight from Leo which he pointed out somewhere in the forum and which I found true in my life.

All addictions are not about "the substance" but about your "relationship to the substance" . So if you want to get rid of your gaming addictions by all means listen to what the other users have posted here,they are good ... but keep in mind that the nature of an addiction is unaware mind activity that "keeps you on the run" and not still.... ( which is your true need in life and what gives greatest satisfaction ). So in a way there is nothing wrong with gaming so long as you are conscious of your mind.

 

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@NickG

I have been addicted to video games for 5/6 years, between 12 and 17.

In the last years of gaming I also struggled with relapsing and losing will to do other practices. I think compulsive thoughts are definitely connected to some extent to gaming .

I think you will not solve the problem by directly imposing yourself to meditate and quit gaming at the same time.

If you feel the impulse to game and you can't control it, then it is likely that you are not really grounded in being : that you are neurotic, to some level out of touch with your true self. 

What you can do to really face the problem at its root is find the root cause of your neurosis. You can analyze the others areas of your life where you do not get the full results that satisfy you (ex: relationships , friends, work , etc ) and begin understanding why that is so. 

This will lead you to a deeper grounding in being and an ability to control yourself and your impulses. This will also reduce a lot all your compulsive mind activity .

This also requires a lot of work, study and emotional labour. You really need to take your life in your own hands.

BTW at the time the way I quit the addiction was by selling PS3 and gaming PC .

I waited to do the hard work I told you about until I had no other choice left. 

 


Observe reality as it is, not as you would like it to be 

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I'm 34 yo and still inrternet/gambling addicted.

The only thing that worked is to have a busy agenda or not step home.

I also experimented struggling with focus on meditation and I blame multitasking. Form me Its usual play some game while listening some youtube video while cooking rice in the kitchen... that leads to attention problems.

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@NickG This reply will be a little long but I doubt you will regret reading it. 

Video games are like innocent looking crack cocaine. I know a lot more people that have fucked their lives up completely because of MMORPGs than by any illegal drug. As with all addictions, pretending you're not addicted and forcing yourself to quit cold turkey is a surefire way to relapse. You need to look within as to why you like video games so much and the reason will not be pretty. Here are a couple of ones I've seen, some in myself, some in others:

 

-Life is hard and stressful and you don't like feeling pain. Thus, you use video games to stop feeling pain (or anything at all really) and try to get yourself back together. 

-You are looking for a sense of connection or identity in virtual social circles, which you lack in real life. I see this a lot with people hooked to online MMORPGs and generally games that have a "community": It's not the game itself that is making them come back to it, it's that they are good at it and people in the game recognize it and give them praise, while in real life the addicts feel like unloveable failures. The addicts are so starved of affection and of a feeling of connection that they steep as low as they have to to get it; like a starving man will eat worms and grass. 

-You feel powerless to your circumstances in real life (if you are being really honest with yourself) and in video games, you get to be powerful. Sounds simplistic but people will do anything to stop themselves from feeling like helpless prey.

-Your soul (or more accurately, your primal drives instilled in you by evolution, which are still firing regardless of how domesticated you got in the 21st century) needs adventure, needs difficulty, needs exploration, needs to be directly facing the unknown with no mediators. That's the feeling that you get when you explore a new area in an open world game. The unknown isn't scary when you know that you can probably deal with it; it's exciting and unbelievably fun. If you are lacking that feeling in real life (eg. your life is mostly routine and grind and you are afraid to step outside those confines), you will be tempted to get it in the largest doses you can find elsewhere (in games).

 

See if you can relate with any of those, I think they are pretty common. If not, still, you get the idea: drill into your mind and find out why you play. It's not fun, but it's hopefully preferable to the constant suffering caused by the addiction. 

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