Thinking about stress

Technically there are two main kinds of stress, the good kind and the bad kind. I know that that’s generalizing a lot, but the bad kind is the one that is bad for our health, while the good kind has a positive effect on us. Bad stress can lead to a burn out, or a breakdown, while good stress makes us more alert, helps our blood circulation, etc. Makes us feel more alive. Now, how do I relate this to ddo? Ddo is a game, but I see the stress in it, or the stress it causes me and others. The bad stress you see when people become obsessed with getting an item or reaching a goal. When you spend all your free time focused on this, and it may even affect your life outside of the game. When your life has suddenly become focused on this goal in ddo. Not all people recognize this. This type of stress can lead to insomnia, lack of appetite, mood swings.. etc.

I know that I have become a ddo addicted, I know it causes me negative stress a lot of the time. I don’t become obsessed with goals in the game, I have intentionally avoided putting a time limit on these goals. But my stress lies in how much time I spend on the game. Not only all the time in game, but the time outside of the game when I spend thinking about it. I am also competitive, and I want what others have. I keep having to tell myself over and over “relax, you’ll get there eventually”. I do have to cut myself off from others’ influence, and just focus on my own goals, not of the goals of others.

Osi has been a very good influence on me. He was talking about the sickness, how people become sick from ddo. He was not exactly able to explain it, but I know what he was talking about. It’s the addiction, and the stress that comes from it. Some ppl get burned out, others find something irl to focus on instead and stop playing. Then we have the casual players who have found a balance and do not stress as much about the game. I can tell you I have not. I have lost a lot of interest in a lot of irl stuff because I’d rather spend my time in game. I do still make sure to exercise regularly and I socialize once in a while, but I have very little goals irl compared to in game.

Now, I’ve spoken a fair bit about the negative effects from the game. What about the good ones? The good stress in life is for example when you exercise, or when you for a short time focus on a task that has to be done asap. When you get your adrenaline pumping and heart racing, after which when you relax you feel good. In ddo at least I get these moments of good stress in situations where things are challenging, but not unbeatable, and my party works together. I love pulling my party through a tough situation. Moments like this for me:

  • shroud puzzles. If I have to do more than one, I tend to get nervous and shaking. Yes, still after 100+ completions
  • some time after U14 I was healing ee Trial by fury. This was very exciting, as the melees were taking so much damage that I had to throw mass heals/ cures very fast so they wouldn’t die
  • tanking the Stormreaver. This has slowly started to not excite me anymore, but I used to feel my heart racing from tanking SR
  • Spinner of Shadows elite at level with a less than uber group. I’ve at least twice kited spinner + trash around center, while throwing heals and raises
  • any quest/ raid where I have to make an effort, and we manage to succeed in a decent amount of time. short man ee ADQ (raid) is fun
  • old epics, before U14 was a lot of fun, when we had to work together to complete

🙂 So, yes. ddo can have both a positive and a negative effect on us and our lives. I think it’s all about finding the balance. I try to make sure to put real life stuff before the game, I only play after I’ve completed my other tasks. Of course, I do often put stuff off, because I enjoy playing more than doing household chores.

Okidoke, ty for stopping by and have a wonderful day.

Stay healthy and remember to get off the computer once in a while.

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5 comments on “Thinking about stress

  1. Striking a balance is a key to enjoying DDO and making gains in real life, at least in my eyes. I do everything I can to make sure I balance my game time with things going in my real life by setting up schedules and tasks and just trying to stay organized overall. I do spend a considerable amount of time in DDO and doing DDO related things (my blog, guild website, forums, etc.). However, real life needs to come first and I have made changes to my play times based on those things. The one good thing for me and DDO, is that DDO is a real life stress reliever…and it allows me to take out any frustrations on those unfortunate enemies in my way…:).

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