How To Overcome Video Game Addiction
I want to talk to you about how to overcome video game addiction.
This is something that affects people of all ages, especially teens and pre-teens.
Studies estimate that 10-15% of gamers exhibit signs that meet the World Health Organization’s criteria for addiction.
The virtual fantasy world enables you to connect with real people through the Internet, as a substitute for real-life human connection.
I used to spend hours/day playing video games. I was totally immersed in it. For me, it was a way to escape the real world.
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When I was in high school, I was shy, insecure, and I didn’t have a lot of friends.
I used video games in order to escape the reality of my life. As a result, I became more antisocial.
I felt so insignificant in high school, but online, I was the best. I was the guy that people looked up to.
It became a tool for me to meet my needs for acceptance and connection.
Video game companies are designed to suck you in. They are set up in such a way that all of your needs get met through video games.
I overcame video game addiction when I was 17 years old. You may be wondering, “How did I do it?”
The way that you change anything in your life is by making a decision.
Oftentimes, in order to make an important decision, you have to get to a certain point, also known as an ‘emotional threshold’.
Instead of escaping and trying to hide, one day I looked myself dead in the mirror and I said, “Never again”.
I decided that I would no longer settle for less than I could be. When I made this decision, I got rid of all my games, my TV, and I sold my accounts.
Once I was exposed to Tony Robbins, I realized that I could be who ever I wanted to be.
If you are addicted to video games, you need to realize that it is costing you money that you could use to build a business and create the life that you really desire.
You are wasting valuable time that you could be spending on improving yourself – learning, having intimate relationships, going on adventures, etc.
If you want to break free of an addiction, you have to replace it with an empowering alternative, and for me, that was self-development.
I created daily rituals that elevated my life to a whole new level.
Make a list of the alternative things that you are going to do; something more empowering that will replace video gaming.
Statistics show that video game addiction is a $66 billion dollar industry. Don’t be a statistic.
Put down the games, join the real world, and strive to become your best self.
Hey, everyone. Stefan here from ProjectLifeMastery.com. In this video, I'm going to talk to you a little bit about how to overcome video game addiction. Now, video game addiction is something that affects a lot of people, especially a lot of young people. It was something that really affected my life all throughout high school. In fact, to give you guys an idea, I would play video games from the moment that I woke up to the moment that I went to bed. I would play it all day, every day. I was totally immersed in it.
There were a lot of days when I skipped school to go home and play video games. For me, it was a way to escape. I think that's ultimately what pushed me over the edge to want to make a change and get away from it. The reality was, that when I was a teenager in high school, I wasn't a popular kid. I didn't have very many friends. I was very shy. I was very insecure. As a result of that, I got picked on. I would get bullied from time to time. I moved high schools quite a bit.
Oftentimes, when you are a weak target and you don't defend yourself, people will attack you even more because they know that you are not going to fight back. They see you as a target to elevate themselves and make themselves look cool. For me, I was very unhappy with my life. I was very depressed, and so I used video games to escape. Video games is a different world. It's a different universe where you can be whoever you want to be. You could start from scratch. You can create your own persona, and you can become very good at it.
You can meet your needs from feeling significant. You can meet your needs through connections, and feel like you're important and unique, and like you are somebody. This was the case for me because I felt like a nobody in high school. I was insignificant to everybody else, but online, because I spent so much time doing it, I was the best. I remember certain games that I played where I was literally the best. I was the guy that people looked up to. I'd take out everybody. I was a part of different teams and whatnot. I was very skilled, so I felt very confident, and it was meeting my needs in totally different ways.
I was living these two different worlds
There is real life and then there is this online fantasy world that doesn't really exist. It was just an illusion. It was very detrimental for me, and it can be very negative to a lot of people. It was forcing me to escape my reality, the truth of my life. Instead of confronting my life, my problems, my depression, and the issues that I had, I didn't face it. I would just distract myself. As a result of that, I became more antisocial. Playing video games is very antisocial thing.
You are just in front of the computer all day. It was disconnecting me from real people and friendships. It was also a waste of time when I look at it as well. I think about all the years that I spent playing video games in high school, and I look back and I'm like, “What do I have to show for that?” I've got nothing to show for that. My high school years were just a blur. At the end of your life, or 10, or 20 years from now, you are not going to remember playing video games.
You are not building anything of value. I often think that if I had spent that time improving my body, my emotions, or building a business, instead of playing video games, I would be like worth tens of millions of dollars today. If I had started that process earlier, and spent the same amount of time focusing on self-development as I did with video games.
I often think about that. Video game companies are designed to suck you in. They are set up in such a way that all of your needs get met through these video games, especially online games. Online games are crazy now. People date, meet each other and get married online. All of your needs can be met online, so that you no longer need the real world.
Im very concerned with the world of virtual reality now. Imagine a future where you don't need to live real life anywhere because you can just put on a virtual headset, and you can live however you want to live in a virtual world. The porn industry is what built the Internet to where it is now. With virtual reality, the porn industry is going to go to a whole new level.
How did I overcome it?
With that being said, how do you overcome video game addiction? How did I overcome it? Well, to give you guys an idea, I overcame it when I was 17 years old. As I mentioned, it was my whole life all throughout high school. My friends played video games. I had online friends. Even when I went to school, on my breaks and lunch break, I played video games. In fact, I remember times when my parents would try to ban me from the computer.
When everybody went to sleep or my parents went to work, I would sneak home from school or I would get out of bed to go downstairs so I could play video games on the computer. It was a real big problem. How did I overcome it? Well, the way that you change anything in your life is by making a decision, a decision to change, where you decide that you are going to cut something off for good, and you are not going to pursue it anymore.
Oftentimes, in order to make these decisions in life, you have to get to a certain point, a point that I often call an 'emotional threshold'. It's that point where there's so much pain associated with the previous behavior, which is video games, that you finally make a decision to change your life and get rid of it for good. You are no longer going to look back. You are only going to move forward.
What sparked that change when I was 17 years old was a girl. When I was 17 years old, I was in love with this girl whom I actually lost my virginity to when I was 16 years old. I was totally in love with this girl. I thought she was the one. She broke my heart. I was devastated over this. I didn't have any confidence to pursue girls in high school.
I looked at myself and I was like, “I don't have any friends”. I was very depressed and unhappy. Instead of escaping and trying to hide from my problems, I looked myself dead in the mirror and I said, “Never again. This has to change and it will change right now, no matter what”. I looked at the mirror and I made a decision that I would never again settle in my life.
I'll no longer settle for less that I can be
I'll no longer settle for a life that I'm unhappy with. I'm no longer going to settle being alone in my life, not having friends, being insecure, or not having confidence. What really pushed me over the edge is when I wondered what my life was going to look like in five years from now or ten years from now, if I continued down this path. What would it be like? I thought to myself, “I'm going to be even more alone, even more isolated, even more unhappy with myself”. That pain of facing the truth will set you free.
If you can get to the truth, you can change anything in your life. Most people don't want to face the truth because it hurts. It doesn't feel good. It feels uncomfortable, because you have to admit to yourself that you are not enough. You have to admit to yourself that you are not happy. If you can get to the truth, you can confront that pain. That pain can drive you to make that decision to change.
When I made that decision, I got rid of my PlayStation. I sold it. I got rid of all my games. I got rid of my TV. I remember that I didn't get rid of the TV right away, but I just disconnected it. I was like, “You know what? I'm going to disconnect my TV”. I sold my accounts. I got rid of everything. I made like a hundred bucks for all of the years that I spent building up these accounts. I didn't really get much of a return for it.
Oftentimes, if you want to break free of an addiction, you have got to replace it with an empowering alternative. For me, what was that empowering alternative? It was self-development. It was realizing that I could change. I was very blessed because, at that time of my life, I got exposed to Tony Robbins and the whole self-help industry. I realized that I could improve myself. I realised that I could be be who I wanted to be. I could be that popular guy in school. I could be that guy that could date that beautiful girl. I could be that person who was successful one day. I realised that the sky was the limit.
I got obsessed with self-development
I replaced one addiction for another. My addiction to video games became my addiction to improve myself and to change my life. Specifically, because I got hurt by this girl and I went through a lot of pain with that, I realized that I was going to make my focus improving myself and developing confidence and social skills, so that I could be able to date attractive women in my life. I replaced all of that with the pursuit of self-development. I improved my confidence, social skills, and dating skills.
I remember at the time I discovered David DeAngelo. He had a great eBook called, “Double Your Dating”. I read this book like 20 times. I kid you not. I printed out the eBook. I read it again and again. I went out and I started approaching women. I went out to nightclubs when I was 19 years old, and faced my fears, did public speaking classes, and improv classes. I read hundreds of books. I did morning rituals, wrote out my affirmations every day, and my life changed. That was the beginning foundation for who I am today. I'm now 30 years old and I never looked back.
Now, has there been times since where I've played some video games? Yeah. I actually have a PS4. I don't play it much, to be honest with you. I got it more so because I enjoy playing socially with friends.
We will play UFC or NBA 2K. To be honest with you, I actually get bored with a lot of video games today. I used to love role playing games, but I get bored of them now because it's such a process to finish a game. The amount of hours you have got to put in is just insane. Sometimes I will play a cellphone game or something like that. I don't use it as a distraction.
I think if it becomes an addiction and is detrimental to your life, a distraction that you can't stop, and it ends up destroying your life, than it can be a very negative thing. I think that having some balance can be good. How do you overcome it? It's about making a decision. It's getting to that point where you decide that continuing playing video games is costing you, and it's creating a lot of pain in your life.
How is playing video games every day costing your life?
Well, I can tell you this much. Playing video games every day is costing you money. You are spending money on it, but also you are spending your time, which is worth a lot of money. In fact, you are spending time which you could use to build a business to make more money in order to create the life that you really want. In fact, oftentimes I call TV or video games an electronic income reducing machine. The more time you spend doing it, the more money you are losing. You are losing the potential of earning more money.
You need to realize that it's costing you money, that you are wasting away valuable time that you could spend improving yourself, going on adventures, learning, and having intimate relationships with real human beings. All these different things are incredibly valuable. Also, it can link to depression, anxiety, and stimulation overload. You need to realize the negative consequences associated with it, and get to a point where you decide, “You know what? Never again”.
You have got to make a real decision. You have got to get it out of the house. Sell it. Do whatever you have got to do. Give it to a friend. Close it down. Get banned. Set up software so that it disables you from even using it. Again, you have got to replace it with something else. There are going to be times where you are going to feel bored, stressed, alone, or depressed and you're going to want to go to that crux that you've used in the past in order to escape and to feel good.
You have got to have an alternative
You have got to make a list. Maybe the list is, “I'm going to read. I'm going to watch a documentary. I'm going to go for a run. I'm going to go to the gym. I'm going to go for a walk. I'm going to take a bath. I'm going to get on the rebound, or I'm going to watch a YouTube video. I'm going to do something more empowering with my time to replace it”. Guess what's going to happen? These are positive, sustainable things that are going to make you a better person in the process.
For me, from 17 years old to 30 years old today, I have spent this time wisely. I am who I am today because of the last 13 years of my life, and what I've done every day – the rituals and the books I've read. That's what has made me who I am. I'm excited about what I'm doing today, and where that's going to lead to in another 5-20 years from now. That's the game changer. That's how you overcome it. That's what has worked for me.
It has got to come down to that decision, and you've got to start to realize the pain that is causing it in your life, and create the alternative. Associate pleasure to that process and sure enough you will develop a new addiction. That new addiction will set you free, and lead you down the path of a lot more enjoyment, fulfillment, and less distraction. It's going to force you to go through uncomfortable emotions that you don't want to face and confront. However, by facing it, you are going to become a better person in the process.
That's my strategy. That's my cure for overcoming video game addiction. If you guys enjoyed this video, hit the like button. Hit the thumbs up button. I appreciate the support. Make sure that you subscribe for more videos. Leave a comment below. I'd love to hear what you think. Of course, if you want to change your life, check out some of the courses that I have available to build an online business.
Look at the description below. Check out my Morning Ritual Mastery course which will help you develop rituals in your life and help you set yourself up to win and improve yourself, long-term. I'll have the links below in the description. Become addicted to improving yourself. That's a much better addiction than video games. It's going to lead to a much better life. Thank you guys for watching the video. I'll see in the next one. Take care.
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