[This post would be found by a video gamer who is looking for a solution for binging on video games. This is most likely because they have been binging consistently and wish to stop. My reader will not find anything about burnout because I will not be discussing burnout or a solution to burnout.]
There comes a point in every gamer’s life where they binge on their favourite video game for hours on end. Being a gamer myself I too have suffered. Personally, I found myself binging around Christmas time when I received almost every new video game I could possibly want. My brother, who is also an avid video game fanatic, would often assist me in completing these new games. We would spend countless hours playing these video games, completely oblivious to feelings of hunger. Time was no longer measurable or meaningful. After repeating this routine for several Christmases my brother and I decided to label this unhealthy binge fest as a “tradition” in order to feel better about ourselves. It is because I have experienced it that I believe I have some possible solutions for binging.
As fun as binging can be, there are still several downsides to it. For one, binging on video games separates you from the more meaningful things in life such as family and friends. Video games provide us with temporary happiness while the people around us are there for the long run. By binging we spend less time with the people we care about and more time secluded in a room like a recluse. Regardless of how invested you are in your game you are still a human being with responsibilities. Video games are not and should never take priority. With that being said, focus on completing your tasks, small or big, in order to break away from binging.
Secondly, binging on a video game usually means getting from the beginning to the end of the game in a relatively short period of time due to excessive play. By getting from point A to B in a completely straight line you are passing up a large majority of content that is in-between. For the most part, I believe there are more to video games than beginnings and ends, unless we are talking about Call of Duty’s campaign mode… If you’re going to binge, a good way to slow down is to consider playing the other content thats available to you. For example, I could easily binge on Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain, however, by completing the game’s countless side quests I have more of an incentive to take a break and slow down. This is because I am taking the time to appreciate aspects of the game I would have never seen if I continued binging on the game’s primary content.
Finally, as weird as it sounds, I believe it is essential to spend time away from the screen in order to enjoy a good video game binge session. By spending time away from your PC or TV screen you are giving your brain time to process what you have accomplished instead of practically force feeding it content. Distract yourself by simply having a conversation with your family or friends.
These are solutions that worked best for me, however, they may not be as effective for you. It all depends on how dedicated and willing you are to try and stop binging. If you are dedicated then focus on your priorities, appreciate the small things a game has to offer, and give yourself a break. Burning through a game achieves nothing more than a halfhearted sense of accomplishment. Take your time, take breaks, and have fun.