Three months ago, I quit playing video games. And it was one of the best favors I ever did for myself. Here’s what I wrote in my journal the day I quit (lightly censored for your sanity):
“I hate absolutely everything. I need to stop playing this game. I need to stop playing video games, period. It’s an absolute waste of my time and energy. It brings me no real joy—only illusionary elation. It’s a drug. A worthless drug that saps my life force and channels it into something that has no real impact on the world or my goals. And I feel like a fool for indulging in it to such an extent. If I keep playing video games, I’m signing away my victory, and nothing is worth that. When I get home, I’m deleting the Windows partition of my computer. Video games are fun, but they’re a waste of my time, and there are other ways to pass the time while I wait for something better to happen. Ways that make me better, not worse.”
Video games turned me into a pigeon in a box, pecking at a pressure plate to get a food pellet.
So, when I got home, I deleted the Windows partition off my computer (for the uninformed, most video games run only on Windows, not Mac). I wiped away my entire library and haven’t played so much as a round of Candy Crush since August 18.
Since then, not only have I saved an estimated 270 hours, but I’ve also been noticeably happier.
I’ve tracked my happiness in my journal every day since April 19 of this year and mark each day as good, bad or average. From April 19 to August 19, I averaged 4.75 bad days a month. Since quitting, I’ve averaged just 2.3.
More significantly, before quitting video games I averaged 5.75 GOOD days per month. After quitting, that figure shot up to 15.0. The rest were average.
I started having 52% fewer bad days after quitting video games, and 161% MORE good days. And yes, other things have changed that have contributed to this, but I absolutely believe that quitting video games was the catalyst.
I’ve freed up an average of 3 hours per day of meaningless distraction, allowing me more time to spend working on my life’s mission. Who wouldn’t be happier after making that kind of a change?
Granted, this is all anecdotal evidence, and I wasn’t interested enough to bother looking up statistics to support it. I’m just grateful to be going in a different direction with my life—or rather, going in the same direction, but much more quickly.
So here’s my unsolicited advice. If you struggle with a distraction of your own, be it video games or something else entirely, call it quits for three months and see what happens. Life’s too short to let yourself be a zombie.
Have a great week my friend. ✌🏻