Go out, nerd. Take a walk for a whole day.
Turn it off.
Getting an anxious feeling? You're probably madly stuck to whatever it is and have all the more reason to tear it's hold of you.
Does just not being on it for some time really sound that mad after all?
is right. Turning your computer off - not just putting it to sleep - severs the cycle of never-ending distraction that surfing the web gives rise to.
After shutting the computer down, you need to decide what to do, though. I suppose everyone will find different things enjoyable, but I always felt better after reading a book in my garden. You could do a variation on this theme; buy a book of puzzles to fill in, or walk to the park to read. But there are loads of other hobbies: cooking, walking, listening to the radio, drawing, writing, model-building, and so on. It might feel weird trying these out at first, because it seems unfamiliar and unnatural. But I'm sure you would come to like at least of some of them if you stick to it.
Ganbatte, sushi roll.
Delete bookmarks, cookies, history and any personal configuration made for those sites. Many times habit is the only reason you visit certain places, so when you disconnect from them it is surprisingly easy to forget them.
Delete the accounts you use on those unwanted forums. The effort to rebuild what you had is uninviting and encourages giving up on them.
Accept that you'll have many thoughts on the back of your head wondering what is going on while you are not there because of fear of missing out or just the addiction talking.
Accept that you WILL be incedibly bored but being bored can be a very good thing and lead you to good places but it is not guaranteed.
Then turn off your pc and don't turn it on for as long as you can but force yourself to leave it off for at least 1 whole day. Don't say to yourself "one day passed so it is ok now", keep forcing yourself.
It seems that you are moved by habit which means you probably don't pay much attention to what you're doing, as such forgetting is easier; the hard part is tedium.
I was addicted to an online game as a kid and stopped cold turkey to impress my parents because they complained about it a lot. They didn't even noticed.
If i had my right hand in the peripheral vision, some moments, i would feel and see it holding a computer mouse, my hands would also shake craving the keyboard and mouse. Something like this will probably happen to you but it is fine, the problem really is boredom. Good luck.
Cold turkey is the only way to go.
Mindless browsing is a behavioural addiction; your body literally craves it, and it's much harder to ease off than to stop all together. The internet will still be there when you get back. it took me a long time to realise you don't miss anything by taking a break.
The most important thing I can recommend is get rid of your phone. They're basically remote controls for people; the convenience isn't worth the mental stress they cause or the temptation to use it for internet-y things. Being at the beck and call of anyone with your phone number at all hours of the day is really werid in the first place now that I think about it…
I actually thought bordom was the best part of going offline. People don't like being bored, we actively avoid it, and when computers can't distract us our brains have to try and un-bored themselves. This was when I felt the most creative, most energetic, the most motivated to do stuff - being bored is really great, more people should try it.
I'd recommend a library for stuff to do. Preferably a big one. Spend an afternoon there, look through hobby or craft sections, flip through books that catch your eye, try and find something you can dedicate a lot of time to, that seems rewarding and fun and interesting. I got into gardening this way.
I think you've got to really want a change of pace to get much out of disconnecting yourself. Otherwise, as you say, you'll just watch paint dry instead of pixels flicker.
Not sure if this is already your case, but instead of getting out of the computer you could try and make something productive out of your time on it. Like learning programming or 3D modeling or something.
The former is my particular case, the latter is something I try to get into but haven't quite been able to.
How fucking dumb am I
>post before reading the whole fucking OP
Don't be so hard on yourself, sushi.
I think you should try creating things creating things, maybe start with things you find entertaining and try to create your own or lean how. When I take breaks from the internet, I also spend time reading books and writing in a journal which are ok. Sometimes I feel like my life is stagnating and I’m just doing the same thing all the time but having to create things and not having them readily available seems to change that. Also, an example of this would be trying to write stories to entertain myself. I’m not good at it but for some reason it’s pretty fulfilling.
If you are having trouble being productive, I’ve found that figuring out what you should do or work on, going to bed relatively early (melatonin helps a lot,) and waking up relatively early and doing whatever it is you decided to do as soon as you wake up helps a lot. If you start being productive before you have breakfast or do whatever else you do, you won’t have time to procrastinate, get sucked into some form of escapism, or get overwhelmed with whatever you are working on and it will be easier to concentrate for the rest of the day.
In my experience, once I started going to university and had a lot to do, I started spending a lot less time on the computer (granted I'm doing it now instead of studying). Still, I think one of the best things you can do to help is to start dedicating a lot of time to something worthwhile. At least then, even if it involves the computer, you will be getting something done and you will feel better about your use of it. Maybe just going outside with a laptop to a park somewhere might change the mood around your pc use.
Cultivating social relationships is also a great way of waning yourself off if you have that option. It definitely helps me.
If you really want to get away from anything electronic, there are ways to do worthwhile things without the internet. Even learning a language (something I've been spending a lot of time doing in my free time) can be done with a physical spaced repetition system. You could read physical books, work on maths by hand, make physical art, do exercise. As another sushi here said, try psychedelics, maybe it would give you some perspective.