My road

Discussion in 'Self Improvement' started by 7Tails, Sep 11, 2020.

  1. 7Tails

    7Tails Fapstronaut

    Time to start another journal. Let's start with a tiny introduction. I'm a guy in my early twenties living in a typical russian town. A year ago I had little idea what I want to do. Today I have some big dreams and I'm on my way to making them a reality. The problem is I'm struggling with self-discipline and there's only so much time. I'm starting this journal to record my self improvement process, share my thoughts and findings, and hope it to be useful for others just as well as for me.

    2 things I'd like to clarify:
    1. This is not a reboot log! I just wanted to stress this in case someone among the moderators is thinking to move this thread. It is not about a reboot.
    2. I had a journal before. It was shid. I'll try to make this one not as boring.
    I have to pick up the pace, if I want to actually make significant progress. It won't be enough to only follow through with all my plans when I get a motivation spike because I'm so disgusted with myself not being able to do that. Or just consistently do something every day, schedule some activities, but not make any progress in the long run. I'm tired of that.

    So here I will post both reports on my improvement and my thoughts about it. Okay, let's get started.
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2020
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  2. 7Tails

    7Tails Fapstronaut

    I've made an edit to my opening post (a bunch of them actually) to make it less confusing and I'll just move the talk on my goals and plans to this post. I'm gonna bite the bullet and talk openly about what it is exactly I'm doing and want to achieve. There were two reasons (insecurities) I wanted to avoid being specific. #1 is the probability of somebody I know finding out I'm posting here, but idc anymore about that. And #2 is the bigger one, people may find my desired occupation silly and/or not take me seriously, but idc about that too and there's only one thing I've got to say to such people. Cause I'm serious af and to stop hiding is something I just must do. Writing that way takes up a ton of my brainpower and in the end it just comes out boring.

    Aight, you see, I want to be a professional e-athlete. Yep, a pro gamer, a guy who plays competitive video games. But I'm not done yet! With that I mean to strive for nothing less than greatness, sustained over long term.

    Now, the big plan! The current plan is to save up a small pile of moneys so that I can have at least 3 months of free time and then fully utilize that time for a transition to competitive gaming being my full-time occupation, given I pick the right time and circumstances (that is I'm not delaying working on myself, on the contrary the final push must come when I'll have the right level of competence).

    I actually already did a number of things with this dream of mine in mind and it is also the main reason I'm here, "getting a job in IT" while amusing failed to move me as much.
    • Well, I did start the whole self-improvement journey because of that. Over half a year of nofap, but that's only one of the distractions to be removed from my life.
    • I'm working on my productivity system.
    • Working on my health, sleep and exercise being the first improvements.
    • Before I never kept a job for as long as I've now. I was dependent on my parents all my uni years and now that I have something to work towards I am not.
    • I reattended my university again. Now, unlike nofap, that gives me some real benefits. For example I moved into my uni's dorm and that reduces my "rent" over 10 times (and with scholarship I basically live here for free). There's a lot of advantages that come with being a student and I get all of them literally for free. It's just an opportunity that I couldn't let slip.
    But what I'm still failing at is having a good self-discipline. I guess being an undisciplined degenerate since like 12 is coming back to kick my ass. So I have to laser-focus on this. And this is the point of this journal.
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2020
  3. 7Tails

    7Tails Fapstronaut

    Alright, enough introducing and memeing.

    1. I've been looking for ways to cut down on distractions. I use two apps on my phone: StayFree and Screen Time. The first one has nearly all of the functionality I use - tracking the time I spend in various apps and setting reminders or blocking the apps completely when I spend too much time. And I have the second one just to display overall screen time in the notifications tray. Chrome extensions: Forest for blocking all websites except allowed ones for specified time, Webtime Tracker to see how much I use various websites, StayFocusd (I will probably replace it with something else) to place a time limit for time wasting websites, DF Tube hides recommendations on YouTube.
    Things I'm planning to do:
    • To come up with a schedule for watching YouTube. Basically only use it on specified times.
    • Get a simple electronic watch, so I can just see the time on my left hand instead of looking at my phone. So I would have less temptation to waste time either by habit or seeing a notification.
    2. I've been reading Success Through a Positive Mental Attitude and I read about how Ben Franklin tracked his commitment to his 13 virtues. I got interested in his method, so I made my own spreadsheet in Google Docs. Each column represents a commitment and each row is a day of a month, each cell will be filled by a number representing a number of times I've deviated from being committed to a goal. Though my commitments are different from Franklin's virtues and they are:
    • Cutting down distractions. The number of times I started wasting time with something I know how to avoid (I did not start using all of those tools for nothing, did I?)
    • Following the plan. The number of unchecked items in my todo list for the day with no valid reason for it not to be done (force majeure).
    • Doing it now. If I can do something now then in my best interest I should do so. The number of times I procrastinated on something.
    • Developing PMA. Using principles described in the book. The number of times I left my negative thinking patterns unchanged and not redirected in a positive direction.
    • Thinking time. Planning, reflecting on the day and filling this spreadsheet. Undistracted and concentrated. The number of times I didn't concentrate on this.
    I will add more in the future. The beautiful thing about Google Docs spreadsheet is that I can not only use it from my PC or phone, but I also can share it here.
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2020
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  4. 7Tails

    7Tails Fapstronaut

    It wasn't a great month so far. Around the end of August I started slacking off, and lately I've been slacking off a lot. For example yesterday was my day off, I woke up to the alarm on my phone and went back to sleep justifying it with that I haven't had a good sleep that night. When I finally got up at 10am instead of 8am like I wanted, I went on wasting life on my phone and PC, productivity out the window. In the evening I thought of writing a post here, but didn't really feel like it, for a moment I wanted to just delete this thread thinking "What's the point? I don't journal and reflect regularly and don't feel like doing it now, I'm just clowning and spitting out some incoherent thoughts, this 'journal' is far from helping myself, what's the point of keeping it public?" Instead I wrote all of that down in my copybook.

    I know that logically I'm not in too bad of a spot, that's just me burying myself deeper and deeper. My biggest downfall was probably just allowing myself to be less disciplined. How do I keep myself in the right frame of mind? What am I doing wrong? I think I have the answers lying on my nightstand, in my e-reader. I just have to study them, I have to put in some serious work and thought towards self-discipline. I need an actual systematic approach.

    By the way, I've made some changes to the spreadsheet that I was talking about in the previous post. I revised my commitments and for the moment there are only two: avoiding procrastination, developing PMA. Some were merged into one and some were just discarded to think them over later. Instead of typing a number into a cell, I will just type a "-" mark for each time I failed, the idea is to check this chart multiple times a day while memory is still fresh and it's easier to just add a mark especially on the phone. Also similarly to Franklin's method I will have a main focus on one commitment each week, which is indicated in the spreadsheet by highlighting the cells.

    Now it's time for me to go and see what I was wasting time with on the web yesterday, if you're reading this, have a great day.
    Master Chips likes this.
  5. 7Tails

    7Tails Fapstronaut

    In the previous post I said that I'm having discipline problems for about a month now or more. "Slacking off" is a really mild way to put it, it's actually "degeneration". And yesterday was one of such days. I just didn't feel like doing anything really. Got up at 9am, procrastinated a little bit in the morning, exercised and showered, and then what I did is:
    • played a game on my phone for ~6 hours;
    • pmo'd (yep);
    • watched the whole second season of one punch man in one sitting;
    • then also made sure to rewatch some of the fights and moments for a couple of hours;
    • and finally went to sleep @6am.
    I guess there is a cycle, some days are just less productive than others, a man can't exercise mental power non-stop without rest. Rest can be way healthier though. I will just take note when such days occur and then plan with taking this into account. Right now it seems that first days off after work are such days and while I'm not in good shape they just turn out to be complete crap.

    It's a state of emergency, this degeneration must be stopped, my next moves are:
    1. Declaring a clear objective: the rest of 2020 in a better state of mind, "clean" if you will;
    2. Accountability: I reset my counter due to multiple pmo during this month, and I will also start reporting on my self-improvement progress here regularly on saturdays-mondays depending on my work schedule.
    3. Self-persuasion: the key mistake is allowing myself to omit certain practices like it's no big deal. It is. If I have to write it down to persuade myself then I will.
    4. Minimizing the causes of unwanted behaviors.
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2020
  6. 7Tails

    7Tails Fapstronaut

    Weekly #1
    Today was a generally mediocre day, didn't waste too much time on anything but also haven't planned to do much. The only real slip up today is when at 8.30 pm I started watching youtube for about an hour and a half instead of doing some planned work and writing this post. So now I'm trying to quickly catch up with the plan and go to sleep. As for the whole week, this week I had a couple of youtube binges, hence I don't really move forward with my plans.

    But there is an upside. I've came up with a couple of self-suggestion phrases for myself. Self-suggestion is something I've read about in the PMA book. The idea, in my interpretation, is to repeat them daily and so to persuade yourself. My phrases are of more practical nature than "self-motivators" from the book, though those are useful too. My phrases contain an intention affirmation of what I will or won't do. Continuing the topic of self-persuasion, this can also be done with journaling and it's the basis of Mark Queppet's metascript method. I've already tried it earlier this year and thought it to be helpful, but I haven't made journaling a habit. Most of the times I just don't know what to write, so in such cases why not use this technique?

    As for my daily tracking spreadsheet that I've been talking about in the previous posts, tbh I find this system to be not SMART, I need to track things that are more specific and measurable, so I'll have to think that one over. Commitments as broad as "avoiding procrastination" and "developing PMA" just won't do, it's hard to judge sometimes.
  7. 7Tails

    7Tails Fapstronaut

    So my plan for this week is to start making journaling a daily habit. I will journal before going to sleep and use the following process:
    1. Recall the events of the day from waking up to the current moment.
    2. Find my slips from desirable behavior that require correction. I mean the bigger ones, I must focus on progress rather than doing things perfectly.
    3. Write a retrospective metascript entry (see previous post) concerning each of those slips.
    4. Next I shall plan my next day.
    5. If I'm worried that I may not show up well with my plans, then I will write a preemptive metascript entry.
    Basically I'll build around my already established habit to sit with a pen and a copybook writing at least some kind of a todo list before going to sleep.

    One thing at a time.
  8. 7Tails

    7Tails Fapstronaut

    Weekly #2
    I've been journaling every day and will continue to focus on making it a daily habit. I am also re-reading the metascript journaling guide and for this kind of journaling I need an objective - a behavior I want to change. This may be my journaling habit, but journaling about journaling seems a little bit strange to me, but if I'll have to then I will.

    Yesterday I had one more binge day, started procrastinating as soon as I got back home from the uni and ended up watching anime all night. Keeping online entertainment to a minimum will be my next main objective as soon as I will have journaled for a couple of weeks.
    1. I can only use entertainment websites on the specific schedule: 1 hour every day off from work, 8pm-9pm.
    2. Using these websites outside of the schedule is forbidden. I installed a website blocker chrome extension that blocks websites using my schedule. Turning it off = fail.
  9. Queek The HeadTakker

    Queek The HeadTakker Fapstronaut

    Watch out pay atention on your road or you maybe become off road , sooo No PMO!
    7Tails likes this.
  10. 7Tails

    7Tails Fapstronaut

    I will need to find out what's going on inside my head. I don't really know myself, though I can see the outsides: undisciplined, almost completely socially isolated, cynical. My mental attitude defines how well I can do in almost everything and it can be changed. But I need to know what to change to accurately correct the most problematic beliefs and thoughts which are now basically just habits of thinking. Now as I'm writing this post I remember that in the book about PMA there is a chapter called "Clear The Cobwebs From Your Thinking". Heh, guess that's how well I read books that only now I'm starting to get it. So that is one more objective on the path.

    1. Doing now: make journaling a daily habit.
    2. Start keeping online entertainment and use of my phone/pc within a set schedule.
    3. Start studying my thought habits.
  11. 7Tails

    7Tails Fapstronaut

    Weekly #3
    It hasn't been a perfect week, way to far from it. But there are positives: my current nofap streak is growing and I kept journaling every time I sat down to plan the next day. It's time to start winning, I should recognize more of my improvements and take note of them while journaling. I believe it's important for motivation and my ability to learn. Daigo Umehara in his book "The Will to Keep Winning" provides a following example:
    Next week it's time to start fighting my problem with online entertainment. I will start to use entertainment websites and my phone and pc within the schedule I posted above
    I combine this objective with going to sleep and waking up on time. Before this autumn I had more or less stable sleep schedule, now that I've let myself binge watch youtube, anime and some other stuff, I've been neglecting it. I will now get back on track and rise even higher than I was before.
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  12. 7Tails

    7Tails Fapstronaut

    Weekly #4
    I'm late with posting this, but in the last week this wasn't my only fail, since I failed to follow through with the schedule objective and also broke my nofap streak. Right now in a brief moment of sobriety I realize that it's ridiculous, but I've been binge watching youtube/anime a lot this week and pmo'd a few times, I'm neglecting my sleep (even now) and failing to stick to my plans (and to plan too). Reasons? I don't really even know. So for now my main objective will be getting to 90 days of nofap. The secondary one is trying to understand the cause better. I don't believe in porn addiction that much, there must be the underlying cause for the lack of self-discipline whether it manifests itself as pmo, as binge watching, impulsive buying or overeating. I must know myself. I do have some ideas, but I'll talk about them later in the coming posts. Over.
  13. 7Tails

    7Tails Fapstronaut

    Weekly #5
    This week was fine, even though my degeneration continued for the first couple of days, later I've managed to muster up some willpower and now I'm heading for a bigger streak and better sleep. I've been also thinking about the reasons for my recent failures. I even have been writing a huge post here about them, but didn't finish it and wasn't sure whether it even fits here, so in the end the draft just got lost. Right now I think it's obvious that it can't be just a simple disciplinary slip, the real reason is my current mental/emotional condition. Whatever it is and the reason for it, I can't really put my finger on it. I've been to a therapist earlier this year and decided that I won't go anymore, at least to the same one, I can't put what I feel into words and they're not helping. Impatience and frustration with not being able to efficiently work towards my goal? Doubt whether I can even reach it while it's possible? Poor social life? Idk, probably a little bit of everything. Lately I've even doubted the chosen path itself, but I don't really even know what else I want to do in life, but certainly not working a job I hate till I die. Today, about 2-3 hours ago I tuned into a stream by one of my favorite streamers and this is probably a moment to start believing in God or something, because quickly after I started watching he finished a game he was playing and started talking about how it is difficult to become a streamer/youtuber/pro gamer/etc today (really slim chances of success), how he became successful himself and how people would quit their jobs with 10 subs on youtube. I guess I found some pieces of the puzzle for myself there. I've also started reading The Laws of Human Nature by Robert Greene, hope to find something useful.

    Anyway as for my current objectives:
    1. Remains the same - reaching 90 days of nofap again and going way past my previous streak.
    2. Sleep. That's why I also should try to finish writing this post quicker.
    3. I need to have a general plan of recovery back to my previous state before this line of failures or maybe even better.
    4. Level up my planning and journaling - find a way to fairly estimate how much I can do, make a journaling routine and start following it.
    5. I should start working on my social skills and life, as of right now my initial idea is to at least try and shake the dust off the connections I already have/had.
    Good night, folks.
  14. 7Tails

    7Tails Fapstronaut

    Weekly format hiatus
    I've failed to stick to posting here weekly, just like many other stuff lately. For now I'm not going to continue posting weekly. I will post here again when I'll have some answers to my own questions.

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