(19 may 2023) -- who doesnt love easy dopamine

it's kind of ironic. i've been wanting to write something about how i hate the internet for ages but when it actually comes down to it i find myself getting distracted again and again, instinctively clicking away from the html editor to scroll for *just* a bit longer, to put if off for a few more minutes, seconds, hours. anything other than mindless scrolling feels too exhausting. i'm hopelessly addicted to the internet as it is to the point where i have to physically block myself from social media through extensions and blockers and uninstalling apps. i even had to put a lock on to bring myself to write this. what a sorry state of existence to live in.

somewhen during late april i forbade myself from doomscrolling on my phone during my breaks and commutes, eventually tapering off social media until i didn't feel the urge to go back anymore. then came may and i fell sick with nothing other to do than scroll through socials while battling one fever after another. i still haven't fully recovered, but the habit has stuck with me ever since, even getting to the point where i find myself scrolling more and more, almost as if to make up for all that lost time in april when i couldn't visit these sites. hours pass and i do nothing, i keep putting off my studying until it's too late to start and then reward myself with more and more hours of content consumption--hours from which i barely remember any of the posts or discussions ive read.

up until i got my own computer at the tender age of eighteen, i was only allowed for two hours at best at the family computer (or more if i'd successfully guilt trip my mother into letting me borrow hers), always surrounded by that aura of paranoia brought on by nobody other than vindictive and overprotective parents always wanting to know just what i'm up to on that damned machine. always having to justify my online existence to them. as soon as i got my own pc - and with proper measurements in place to ensure that this time *nobody* will know just what i'm up to, nobody will read through my messages or comb through my files - i would spend hours on there. almost as if to make up for all those years. sounds familiar, doesn't it?

the internet has me in a chokehold and i can't seem to escape. worse enough, i don't think i want to. i've become so comfortable in the online realm i wouldn't know what to do without it. i contemplate smashing my phone almost every single day and then, without batting an eyelash, spend hours in bed doomscrolling because it's the easiest, most comfortable mind-numbing activity out there that doesn't involve me being alone with my thoughts. caught in the net, truly.

but hey, at least i never downloaded tiktok. as addicted as i am, i still can't help but feel disdain for people who choose to spend their time watching horrible short videos. is this the same thing as meth addicts saying that at least they're not doing heroin? kind of. but in the end we're both voluntarily worsening our attention spans, so who knows

---

(08 jun 2023) -- getting back on track

i had my degree finals last week. in an effort to distract myself from whatever sorrows and troubles the men in my life have been throwing at me, i let myself browse social media mindlessly again. and now that my finals are over (passed, by the way! be proud of me ^_^) i find myself reaching for my phone again ang again, still looking for that distraction, for a treat.

spent the day doing nothing but scrolling. catching up on whatever i may have missed during the past few days i hadn't been online. at the end of the day i felt nothing but shame -- another twelve hours wasted. and it's not like i need to fill my time with productive tasks 100% of the time, no, i want to allow myself to relax, i just can't find any other way that isn't mindlessly scrolling. i need to get back on track.

site blockers work reasonably well. studying for finals, i found myself endlessly distracted, wanting just that quick fix, that dopamine hit of opening facebook and scrolling for a while only for the site blocker to instantly close that webpage, forcing me to grin and bear it and go back to work. heh. too bad i don't have any self control as of late. i just keep disabling it.

funny thing. i recently stumbled upon a forum dedicated to quitting p*rn and the users kept diaries and logs of their successes, posting about activities they'd been doing instead. some of them lasted years and kept it up. i won't lie, it did kind of inspire me. even though my addiction isn't nearly as life-ruining as theirs. it was certainly an interesting read. mental note to myself, update todolist on front page; add a thinkpiece on it

anyway. i need to devise a routine for myself for when i get back to work next week. here's an outline ::

8am - 10am (breakfast, commute): no social media in bed or on the train to work (discord and spotify are ok)
10am - 4pm (work hours): only allow myself social media at lunch break ; phase that out eventually
4pm - 6pm (commute, chores, daily groceries): once again, no social media out in public
6pm - 9pm: catch up on social media/imageboards/reading for a while. no doomscrolling*
10pm - 1am: only use the computer for either hobbies or creative stuff**

*no aimless scrolling. try to fill the time spent on social media/imageboards in a meaningful way
** for those nights when inspiration strikes. when it doesn't, allow myself to play games/watch stuff

long-term i'd like to :: (ordered ascending by the amount of effort its gonna take)
- get back on track with my workouts
- update the weblog and keep regularly updating
- start reading before bed instead of being on the phone
- get back into digital art

gonna slowly try this out over the course of the next week or so. let's hope it goes well? will definitely update this log as we go on. wish me luck !

---

(02 dec 2023) -- no more posts! i've fucking had it

for years now, i've been steadily decreasing the amount of things i post on social media following a rather unpleasant experience. TLDR: i pissed off a bunch of rightwing trolls in a forum-wide argument and they dug up "dirt" on me, aka started copying and reposting things i'd written anywhere online. menial, really. but it got right under my skin. and they continued to do that for a year or two. and wherever i went, i could not shake the fear that they would find me and start reposting my shit again. really teaches you to think about what you post, doesn't it? another factor that greatly influenced this is the fact that i'm a doxxer. i'll admit it. nothing brings me delight more than finding someone's (that someone usually being an object of interest for me) social media posts and photos and i really, really wouldn't want that to happen to me again. i keep everything private with only the minimal amount of information posted anywere.

however, this doesn't account for the fact that i'm one opinionated and reactionary son of a bitch. i needed to keep at least one space where i could connect with based women and post about my frustrations with men. i'm a long-time lolcow/cc user and i always found comfort in the sheer anonymity that imageboards provide, but i needed a community i could communicate with. and that's how i found tumblr and started posting my shit there, relatively unnoticed by the outside world but with a tangible following of thousands. but i messed it all up by connecting this blog to my real life.

this illusion of anonymity and the pursuit of clout really bring out the worst in people, don't they? believe me, i've seen it myself. i spent hours, if not days, of my life agonizing over whether my social media-self was in any way traceable to my real-life self, and if i was feeling secure enough in my anonymity to post what i REALLY thought. and just when i thought i was anonymous enough to really vent on my main blog, a guy i was sort of dating at the time glanced over my screen and saw my URL. he then proceeded to go through an archive of all the things i shared there and beat me up for some of the literal joke posts i shared. since then, i've been really, really careful about what i share with people.

this fixation on short-form content that's been steadily taking over social media makes it really, really easy for things to get misinterpreted. i got beat up over a joke and over me quoting a lyric in my bio. sigh. trying to infer the scope of someone's entire personality just by glancing over their social media posts is nigh impossible. everyone contorts themselves into shape, knowingly or unwittingly, and any observer is not immune to this sort of sampling bias. i only ever posted on my blog when i needed to vent, leading anyone who followed me to believe i was nothing but a bitter, hateful husk just because i don't like to post about things going well for me out of fear of bragging.

i'd be lying if i said that my quitting was for any noble reason. once again i'm fueled by nothing but spite. the other day, a few of the of the girls i thought i could call friends made some unprovoked vagueposts directed toward the things i've been posting about, clearly affected by the biases i mentioned. they complained about "some people" (read: me) being nothing but hateful and bitter and shit-talked some of the radical feminist opinions i had expressed. funniest thing about this whole ordeal is the fact that i clearly remember them agreeing with me in real life over both of these things. i've been steadily frustrated with the state of the 'net lately, but this sort of thing was the final nail in the coffin for me.

but that's the nature of the beast, isn't it? i can't lie to myself and pretend i never saw those posts. least i can do now is go dark on social media. at least that will teach me to stop giving out my URL to people i know IRL, or they'll start mocking the struggles i post about. i think that there's beauty in long-form content, and i've been slowly rewiring my brain to enjoy this type of content over brainless slop from the trough of endless scrolling. i haven't watched any short videos in over a year now, i don't have an instagram, twitter or a tiktok account and i barely use facebook. i'm still logged in to tumblr and i still browse posts, but i think it's really time i returned where i belong. to the small web.