Procrastinators Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from chronic procrastination.

Computer games stop you feeling pain(Paper article)

A popular newspaper wrote an article today based on a new book called 'The Rough Guide To The Brain'.

Apparently, one of the discoveries is that Computer Games stop you feeling pain. Here is the mini article printed in the newspaper in full:

Computer games stop you feeling pain: Burns victims who play virtual-reality games while having wounds dressed suffer less pain. Scans confirm that pain activity in the brain is reduced when patients play a PC game. Dr Gibb says: "They suffer a fraction of the pain and need fewer drugs."
Reason:busying brain cells with video games distracts the brain from what's going on preventing pain signals from getting through.

I can't really think of anything to add, I'm sure you can all see why I posted this.

p.s. On a more off topic note, here is another mini article from the same page:

Advertising really does affect your brain: Brain scans prove it. The brain stores brand information without us even realising it, usually in the hippocampus section, where long-term memories are kept.
When we see or hear and ad linked to that product, the brain dips into its files to retrieve any information it already has.
We may not realise it buy it does affect our choice of product.
Reason: The brain records everything - even information we don't think is important.

It's Practical :)

I agree on it and even many hospitals have engaged game consoles in their operations room so that whenever there is some serious injury to some child they can engage the child playing the game while he's been treated. Even some free games are very popular.

Computer games and virtual

Computer games and virtual worlds represent the new era of entertainment. There are many researchers that found out how virtual worlds can cure depression and anxiety along with some addictions. There was also an article on virtual addiction treatment and how people can benefit of it online, without leaving the house. Of course, I believe it takes some will to quit something addictive.

Video games can be used for escape and distraction from pain

That is an interesting article.  I am one of those people who, as a significant part of procrastination, used to use playing video games in an addictive fashion since I was not able to stop by myself.  However, I did seek help for that through things like counseling and joining support groups, mainly OLGA/OLG-Anon at , which has allowed me to stop playing them for quite a while now.  Although I was playing just regular video games as opposed to virtual-reality ones, I also found that they helped me to escape and distract me from pain, although it was almost entirely emotional pain rather than physical pain.  I found that I was able to do that by focusing extremely intently on playing the games, so intently that I did not allow my brain to process anything much else and, in that way and in a most general sense, the game screen in front of me became a type of virtual world for me.

Since I have my gaming problem under control now, I am focusing instead more on my general procrastination problem, which is why I am here on this excellent site.  I have so far found some very useful information and I am still reading other posts to get more.

- John O.

Carpe Diem! (Seize the Day!)

I'm not a gamer...

 ...but this makes sense to me.

I can periodically get addicted to Freecell, and generally need to just not start.

I can also from time to time compulsively surf the Internet on various topics of interest. When I exercise supreme discipline, I can usually confine my surfing to what is truly necessary and stop promptly when I've collected what I need to in the form of information that I'm seeking for a specific purpose. But it's easy for me to just keep chasing links of interest.

This is a modern day form of a habit I had more than 40 years ago as a child. My family had the 1963 edition of the World Book Encyclopedia, and I was often reading the articles in it just for entertainment, then following the cross references at the end and looking at other articles, etc.

What I think these activites have in common--gaming and net-surfing--is that they combine a lot of specific video or audio (or both) stimulation with a lot of instant gratification. Shooting the bad guy on a game and getting how ever many points each time is a little "yeah!" moment, or so it seems to me when I watch my sons play. Reading a web page, seeing a link, jumping to the link, does the same thing. It's a low level gratification but it's really instant.

Now this is just what I'm working up out of my own experience and my own head, but I'd be interested to find out if it ties in with the conclusions that researchers reached in exploring this subject.



The Hero's Code:

Show up. Pay Attention. Speak the Truth. Let Go of the Outcome.

Used to be a gamer, kinda-sorta

...and except for the fact that my World Book Encyclopedia was from 1974, and I don't have kids (but can see the behavior in some of my younger co-workers), your story sounds a lot like mine, George.

Ironically, I knew enough about my potential to become addicted to gaming such that I never owned a gaming system as an adult. The Internet, though, I find to be a much worse addiction simply because, as was the case when I was 9 and reading about "reproduction" in the Q-R volume, I'm an information junkie.

Today I was feeling especially bad about myself, so much so that, in fact, I said to myself, "Well, you joined PA, let's see what they have to say." I got online and saw an article on my home page (Yahoo) that got my blood boiling and I immediately had to go to one of my favorite discussion forums, where there was already a thread going on, to post my comments. I IMMEDIATELY felt better...and about an hour later I came here. :rolleyes:

I've always known I self-medicate with the Internet but it was especially apparent today given the intensity of the mood swing. Honestly, I don't feel bad about it (right now, at least) because at least it got me moving when I might have gone back to bed and stayed under the covers all day. My challenge is not to stay online all day...thankfully I have done some of the things on my CI list and I still have a few more I want to finish before turning in tonight.

internet time and

internet time and info-junkie-ing:

I can identify with this too, Peregrine. What first led me here was googling about net addiction and finding a post here about something called leechblock. That has helped me a lot.

Thank you chickadee

I just installed Leechblock on Firefox and can't wait to test it out tomorrow morning...even though I am resisting the temptation to block every single blog and forum in my bookmark folders...and I'm trying to ignore the voice that's saying, "It's the INTERNET, fool! There's always something to suck you in!" :D

When I absolutely positively need to get work done, I unplug my modem and put it in the coat closet.

avoidance/over-sensitivity to fear/resistance

I have learned a lot here about getting past 'I don't feel like it so I won't'. When I first joined I made some posts about the divided will--part says do, part says 'don't wanna' and for solution was NOT more willpower but ask HP to help me be willing to do the next right thing.

 The I got more aware of what I'd gain from 'start before you are ready'.

And now I think part of the avoidance issue is that I have a kind of oversensitivity to fear and resistance associated with certain tasks. Again--turning to HP, learning to do autopilot...

I still have a long way to go, and many scary ignored MITs but I am grateful to you all here for the honesty, sharing and support that I have found. Hope! 

The topic of avoidance and

The topic of avoidance and over-sensitivity to fear/resistance all
lead me back to my time as a pot addict.  I used pot all the time to
get away from the things that needed to be done.  It made it really
easy to give up and say "screw it", so I kept doing it.  Thankfully
that's out of the picture now, but yet even still I seem to avoid tasks
that need to be done.  I've always been able to get lost in a video
game since I was a kid, and probably still could if I let myself, but I
don't start playing them for the simple fact that I probably won't stop
unless something drags me away.  I've wasted upwards of 14 hours on
games when I knew I should be doing something more productive.  Since I
was able to stop both those things (with many many many failed attempts
at first), I now realize that my procrastination problem (i.e.
compulsive avoidance) was just a fuel for those addictions and those things just covered up the real problem of compulsive avoidance.  I think I can lead almost every problem in my life back to procrastination in one form or another and everything I do to avoid the tasks at hand just spiral me back into more procrastination.  It's like a fear of success or something.  Don't know exactly where I was going with this, but it seems like addictions take a deeper root in our own procrastination.  Oh, and I guess this could be seen as instant gratification too because the effect of pot is instantaneous.

I believe you are correct re: instant gratification

I do not have any specific training or expertise in the subject but I believe that you are correct regarding the instant gratification aspect.  That is one of the reasons why some people become addicted to playing video games, or experience the more general Internet addiction as you seem to be having a problem with.

With procrastination, I believe that it can also be addicting in its own way to some people, including myself.   However, it is not so much instant gratification but, rather, more of a form of escape.  If there is something that I would rather not do, for whatever reason, I can always find more enjoyable things to do instead to take up the time.  Part of the problem is that, if I am feeling somewhat depressed, I may not even care very much about whatever task I am ignoring, even if it is relatively important.  However, with help such as from this site, I believe that I am making progress in dealing with this problem.

- John O.

Carpe Diem! (Seize the Day!)

It's about avoidance, not gratification

I agree that it's about avoidance, not gratification. Usually, I tell myself "If I get (task) done, I will have time to reward myself with (free/hobby time to do _____)." Saying this usually means that when I'm about to start doing the set reward activity without having finished the task activity, I can't bring myself to do it because it would give me more guilt than fun. However, this doesn't stop me from procrastinating. I end up watching TV shows that I've already seen and don't care about or doing random other web browsing, the sort that doesn't give me any "pleasure", just a distraction. I manage to forget about the stress for a few hours, then when I remember what I am supposed to be doing, all the guilt/stress/despair/worry comes back. At this point, I feel bad that I've wasted so much time and am worried that now I won't be able to finish. And since my brain works in an all-or-nothing way, I can't bring myself to start something that I might not be able to finish. Anyway, whether I end up doing the task eventually or giving up, when it's all said and done I realize that I've accomplished absolutely nothing-not only did I not do the work, but I also managed to avoid my "fun" activity as well... which makes me feel even more awful...

I think alot of people procrastinate to avoid stress rather than to have fun, ie people that will clean thier whole house in order to avoid a term paper, etc. I think I have to get it through my guilt-infested head that "fun" time is NOT wasted time (in moderation of course). It's the time I spend niether having fun nor getting anything done that needs to be removed from my life.

Hahaha, this makes me think of the Sims... when thier "fun" bar is too low, they will refuse to work and the solution of this is to allow them to have fun, not to go do easier work and then expect them to be able to return refreshed and ready for the harder work. I wish I could convince my guilty conscience of this, as I can see that the amount of time since I've been able to have "fun" directly correlates with my ability to concentrate on work.

This is a really long post... I guess I'm trying to work this out for myself as I'm going along...

Oh, wow! Never thought to

Oh, wow! Never thought to see an OLGA member here.

I'm Pain of Addiction there.

I realized I had a procrastination problem as well...

But back to the topic, this makes a lot of sense to me as a procrastinating gamer. Both were activities that gave me a (temporary) high, followed by resentment, regret, etc. Play video games for five hours, losing track of time. It was fun at the time but now you're overwhelmed with a load of work that you need to get done. You're stressed and frustratted at yourself for letting yourself waste your time like this. Then you finish at the last minute, stressed out, and vow never to do it again.

Of course you do however. They're both forms of escapism that you regret after you are done.  

Both video games and procrastination are for me escapism from some dreary task at hand (for me it's usually schoolwork). I'm capable and able to doing the work quickly and well, but I never do it on a timely manner (one that is timely for me, that is)

 What's Leechblock? Sounds like what I need


Hey Ivani, I'm an OLGAnon member too!  I haven't been there in a while, but I just logged on to see if I could remember my username - it's Journey215.   I've never posted there but it's interesting reading.   I just saw a post that made me laugh:
Nobody Farts in World of Warcraft.   heh.



Show up.  Do your work.  Go home. 

hi ivani

welcome to the site. i totally have that escapism. the cycle of losing track of time then feeling guilty is totally me too. Ppl find recovery here. I have. Tho i still suffer.

If you come back, why not say hi at our daily thread < >

the touch of the master's hand:

"fall down seven times, get up eight" - japanese proverb