r

russ

Father, husband, OCD sufferer, tech geek, and mental health advocate.

Been a While

Hey everyone, it has been quite some time since I have posted here. I have been super busy, my family and I remodeled our house among other big changes.

One of my biggest changes is I switched jobs! I have gotten so used to remote work I did not want to go back into the office, so; I started putting my feelers out there to see if there was anything that I could apply to. Well, I found a full time remote position doing what I really love! Not to get into any details, but this gig is outstanding. I went from doing more busy work to trying to help other companies streamline certain processes and do things better. Now I am much more strategic than I was.

I have been playing very little Xbox lately, but I am addicted to my phone essentially. It is kind of bad; I have been playing this idle game called Ulala. Good lord what a time sink that game is. I do like it though because I can log in, do my daily tasks, and log out. However, it is definitely pay-to-win, and that has absolutely wrecked my wallet. I know, I know, self-control, well I was trying to place first in the hunting season! Anyway, I recommend it as it is a pretty fun mobile game, but don’t download it if you dislike micro-transactions. I mean, you can still play but, I am not so sure you would be competitive.

Anyway, I hope everyone is doing awesome! I look forward to reading all the other Listed.to blogs now that I am back in the action.

I am OK with Taking Medication for OCD

When I started my OCD journey, I ended up freaking myself out over the possibility of taking medication. Well, now that I am about 2 years into my journey of healing, I am finally coming to accept it even though my initial reaction was tough.

I started taking Zoloft right when I had a major panic attack at work. This terrified me so bad that I wanted to make sure it wouldn’t happen again. My doctor did not explain to me that this stuff takes quite a while to begin to work and that I would need to be patient.

The next few weeks of taking my Zoloft, I began to feel much worse. At this point my OCD began to show its ugly face. My anxiety rose more because of this and I finally took myself to the hospital. Well, they explained it more that these medications need to be taken for quite a while and feeling worse before you are better is normal.

My previous doctor also did not diagnose me with OCD at that point so my dosage was extremely low to treat OCD. Dosages for treatment of OCD symptoms is in the upper range, my new doctor maxed me out on Zoloft. This is when I began to feel much better and started to believe that I could get better.

Medication worked wonders for me but, I had work to do. I still had this nag in the back of my mind that I would eventually revert back to bad OCD or that my intrusive thoughts were going to spike. Essentially, I was ruminating that I had OCD. This is a compulsion that I had no idea I was performing.

The medication and therapy have been a game changer. In my experience of living with OCD, the toughness of therapy, and taking medications for the rest of my life is totally worth it. I refuse to let myself go back to that place and the tools from ERP have been a god send that I will use forever.

World of Warcraft: Shadowlands

My wife and I have been fans of World of Warcraft for quite a while. I got her into it back during the Burning Crusade expansion. Life happened though and, we ended up putting it down for a long time. Well, just recently, we decided to jump into the new expansion, Shadowlands.

I’ll be honest, I am not sure how I feel about it so far. I mean, it is the same core gameplay of WoW but the story I feel, is meh. I won’t spoil anything for anyone but I am just not getting any good vibes out of it. I have been keeping up with the happenings of WoW even though I haven’t been playing it and, this one just seems weird.

I feel like I am probably just getting older and I have less patience for things to play out but so far, the story is dragging. I am hoping there is some sort of surprise waiting towards the end of the story. Another negative for this expansion is the lack of a new class. I know they usually skip creating a new class to every other expac but I always look forward to creating and trying new characters out. I am a bit of an altoholic.

Anyway, I am having fun, I am just hoping for more development. I think it is coming, I mean, they are hinting at big things happening. I just feel like it is progressing super slow. Hopefully it will start moving a bit quicker.

Invincible’s Final Moments Were Rushed

Man, I’m really sad. I finally finished the Invincible comic series and I’m hugely disappointed. A series that started off with a bang, ended with nothing more than a whimper.

Invincible drug me right in when I first started reading it. Not only was it different than most comics and superheroes, it tackled some mental health issues. It was quite awesome to see a hero have such heavy weight on his shoulders and actually have his own internal demons he had to face.

Well, what caught my attention at the beginning abruptly was taken away. The final moments of Invincible were rushed and felt as if the creators just wanted it to be over. The art, no offense to the artist was shoddy. It’s almost if the original team that created the comic were sick of it and went on to other things. They passed the torch to someone else who seemed to not care to close out the story.

Anyway, I am a bit pissed off about how it ended. Here’s to hoping the new show can fix the mistakes of the book. I still recommend the series as a whole but, the ending leaves more to be desired.

Invincible Comic Books

It has been a minute since I have updated the blog! Not much going on really, just the normal daily stuff. Anyway, I just wanted to write about the book I have been reading lately and it is the Invincible comic book series.

I really am enjoying these comics, I have been reading them on my iPad and they are an awesome and different take on the superhero genre. There are a ton of twists and turns that you really aren’t expecting.

Mental health is a huge issue in these comics also. The main character Mark, has the weight of the world on his shoulders and he lets it get to him quite often. It is quite amazing to see him fight through it though. I know he is a super hero and all but his struggles were very similar to my own. An internal struggle that felt like there was no end.

The dynamic between Mark and his father is also an interesting relationship. Not going to give anything away but there is a huge twist here that I did not see coming. I highly recommend you stay off searching for information about this book online. There are a great deal of things that made me say “WHOA!” out loud.

Check out the book if you are interested in comics and the super hero genre. It is really good and thought provoking.

Burned Out and Lazy

I feel burnt out a bit and I need a serious break. I have noticed that I have been ultra lethargic and lazy since COVID hit. When I am not working, I sit around all day and either play games or look at my phone. Not healthy at all.

I made a deal with my wife that I would start doing more physical exercise because that does help with mental health issues. I am just, not in the right state of mind right now. Not really sure what is going on. I am not depressed, my OCD is better than it has been, I find it extremely hard to get motivated to do anything.

My goal over the summer is to get myself more active. I love to hike with my family and I will make that a weekly thing. I think if I add a condition to it such as hiking a new place means we all get to go eat at a new restaurant. That will make it fun I think. The whole family gets involved in where to go and we will discover new places.

I want to purchase each of us an ebike. It would be fun to get us all out there on trails without us totally getting wrecked in exhaustion. Plus, we can take them to the grocery store and to our family member’s house that live close by. The cool thing about those bikes is the fact that you can tune how much pedal assistance you need. At first I would need all the assistance! Then as I get in better shape, I can dial it down more and more. Pedal assist can take me to trails I couldn’t go before.

I need some motivation, I have been struggling lately with being a literal lump on the couch. Not sure how I am going to get there but if I want to be around to see my child grow up, I need to make some changes.

Why are Game Developers Releasing Trash?

I love gaming; I prefer it over sitting and watching TV but, times have changed drastically. Games used to be released with little to no bugs, you would pay for a game and you received a mostly bug free experience. Now though, it seems like every new release has devastating bugs that ruin any enjoyment you may have.

Yes, Outriders is one of those games. I played last night again, and it went much smoother than before. However, the inventory bug still exists. A loot game that is based on builds around your gear, has a bug that can wipe out hours of progress in an instant. That is some garbage!

Anthem, one of my most anticipated games before it came out, launched in such a despicable state that it never recovered. The core gameplay was awesome, but the bugs and the lack of any meaningful progress destroyed any potential that it had. Their promised Anthem 2.0 refresh has been shelved and as it stands, I think the games servers will be unplugged within a year.

These are just the games that I have played and had high hopes for that have almost unbearable bugs. There are so many games that I would need months to write them all down that launch like this. Hopefully, this practice of releasing trash ends soon.

Maybe if Microsoft, Sony, Steam, etc. start handing refunds out for games that have severe bugs like Outriders and Anthem, developers will begin to QA their code before release.

Outriders Might be the Next Anthem

I hate to write a post like this but, Outriders is looking like a fail like Anthem. The core gameplay is excellent, the loot is awesome, and the class variety is great. However, it is not ready for prime time. This game is half baked and full of bugs.

First off, the matchmaking is utter crap. Seriously, during your endgame loot runs, you pick join a group for expeditions. No joke, 90% of the games you join, the party leader is AFK. Then, when you get into a game where your party is actually playing, you end up disconnected. I feel like I have had successfully joined games that went through to completion maybe, 2 or 3 percent of the time. It is rough.

Next, the bugs are unbearable. There have been a ton of people on the Outriders Reddit that have had their entire inventories wiped. This is a freaking looter. Gamers are spending hours gathering the right loot to make their builds just right. I have seen multiple people quit because of this bug. What a terrible first impression.

Speaking of min/maxing your builds. Now People Can Fly is nerfing a bunch of builds that players have worked hard to achieve. Now, if this game was PVP, I would understand but, it is not. PCF has no plans for anything other than co-op. What is the point of nerfing classes? Once again, they are taking away people’s time spent working on builds. Who cares if the game is unbalanced, instead of nerfing, how about you just bring up the other classes?

I want to like this game. It’s core is something that has the power to be around for quite a while. It’s Diablo but with guns, which on paper, sounds fun. I am not so sure the devs are going to be able to dig themselves out of this hole. They lost a lot of trust from their player base already. Luckily, I am playing this on gamepass or else I’d be contacting Microsoft for a refund.

Outriders is Struggling

My previous post has shown that I am enjoying the heck out of Outriders and that is 100% true. However, I am having a real hard time with the endgame and matchmaking with other players. Endgame is fun, when it works but, I am having huge issues getting it to run properly.

My issues usually pertain to matchmaking itself. I either join a game to get immediately kicked out. This is super annoying. Anyone who plays Outriders, if you do not want people to join your game, please set your game as private! By default, Outriders has your game open to the public, which is great to get people to matchmake. The issue is, many people don’t realize that they need to make this change themselves. I think some tooltips or maybe once the person kicks someone, it automatically sets their game to private.

My other issues with Outriders is the connection quality. I have my Xbox gigabit wired, and the lag is unbearable on around 80% of the games I end up joining. This sucks because you end up wanting to stay in the game because you FINALLY joined one that you aren’t getting kicked from. These two things combined make me want to shelve Outriders until they get their stuff together.

These issues really suck for the multiplayer experience, but I still suggest picking the game up. It is a great time for the single player campaign and I have not had issues with lag while soloing. Part of the fun is playing through the story and choosing which class to focus on leveling up. They are promising fixes soon so, hopefully the endgame experience gets much better.

Outriders

Holy crap, Outriders is amazing. I have been playing it for the past 2 days (I used New Zealand as my location on Xbox), and I am enjoying the heck out of it. I already finished the story on one character and I am running through it again on another one. People Can Fly has done an outstanding job with this one.

PCF does not have the greatest track record for stories in games. The Bulletstorm story was utter trash. The writing was laughable and, well, it just was not something that I could invest my time into. Outriders has changed all that.

I won’t get into details regarding the story because I do not want to spoil it but, I liked it. It was an enjoyable romp through a scifi world. There were a few things that I did not see coming. It was cool. I really enjoyed it and am hoping PCF keeps the content flowing to this game.

The character I started with was the Devastator class. It is Outriders “Tank” class. This class is all about rocks, earth, and gravity. If you chose Devastator as your first character, you can expect to be in your enemies’ faces, reflecting bullets, and causing massive earthquakes that send your foes flying. It is a super fun class! Definitely something to get used to as the Devastator is, that you are going to be using cover a lot less than a Pyromancer or Technomancer. It is an interesting class, a cover based shooter with a class that you don’t use cover for? You are literally a human wrecking ball.

Another really cool feature is gearing your character. The equipment in this game actually changes the way you play. There are mods on gear that allow you to do different things, like using a skill twice before it is on cooldown. I really like this for endgame because you can tailor your character to exactly what you want them to do.

Anyway, I am going to get back to playing a bit more. I am having fun although; I am struggling to find people to matchmake with currently. I mean, the game just came out and I am sitting here at endgame wondering why no one is available to play with. I will give it some time and run some expeditions to get new gear.

You Can Get Better

During my time with OCD, I kept going on in my head, thinking that I would never get better. Please, don’t do that! It is already hard enough trying to focus on treatment and dealing with the day-to-day struggles of OCD. Give yourself a break, let the process work, and keep pushing forward.

This was one of my biggest hurdles. Getting out of the mindset that I was going to be scarred by this mental disorder. Every single day, there was a worry that was almost constantly on my mind. “Will I ever be normal again?” or “This is how I am going to be, I have to live like this and accept it”. Don’t do this to yourself if you can help it. I think it caused me to take two steps forward and three steps back. It really put a damper on my progress.

Once I let OCD go, I got better. OCD sucks bad but, to get better, acknowledge its presence and let it go. Don’t ignore it though, as that can be an avoidance compulsion. Think of it as seeing something out of the corner of your eye, you glance at it, then you go on about your day. This is what you need to do with your OCD. If you are thinking about OCD, you are most likely ruminating, which is a compulsion!

I hope some of this stuff is helpful to anyone with OCD. I know how lost I was on my journey and I found comfort in hearing about other people’s journey and success. I can’t wait for this blogging platform to allow comments. I want to get to know you all and interact with anyone who may read this.

Xbox Series X

During my time with OCD, I kept going on in my head, thinking that I would never get better. Please, don’t do that! It is already hard enough trying to focus on treatment and dealing with the day-to-day struggles of OCD. Give yourself a break, let the process work, and keep pushing forward.

This was one of my biggest hurdles. Getting out of the mindset that I was going to be scarred by this mental disorder. Every single day, there was a worry that was almost constantly on my mind. “Will I ever be normal again?” or “This is how I am going to be, I have to live like this and accept it”. Don’t do this to yourself if you can help it. I think it caused me to take two steps forward and three steps back. It really put a damper on my progress.

Once I let OCD go, I got better. OCD sucks bad but, to get better, acknowledge its presence and let it go. Don’t ignore it though, as that can be an avoidance compulsion. Think of it as seeing something out of the corner of your eye, you glance at it, then you go on about your day. This is what you need to do with your OCD. If you are thinking about OCD, you are most likely ruminating, which is a compulsion!

I hope some of this stuff is helpful to anyone with OCD. I know how lost I was on my journey and I found comfort in hearing about other people’s journey and success. I can’t wait for this blogging platform to allow comments. I want to get to know you all and interact with anyone who may read this.

I’m not a Microsoft fanboy by any means but this new Xbox is amazing. Everything fits just right. The controller is an improvement, I personally, like the way it looks, it is much smaller than I thought it was going to be. The fans on this thing are silent, unlike previous generations of the Xbox, I can enjoy gaming without turning the volume up loud.

Gaming has been smooth. The new controller is light but still feels like quality. As my previous posts have stated, I have been playing the Outriders demo. This game is fun as heck. To me, it is a mix of Gears of War with Destiny’s loot. The feeling when you get that new piece of gear is cool.

I also really like the abilities that the classes have. They are pretty distinguishable from each other which is good. I have been using the technomancer because I like long range fighting and the turrets you can throw on the battlefield.

There are a few quirks that are kind of off putting. The cover system is a bit wonky. It doesn’t feel as good as Gears, which is my gold standard for these types of shooters. There have also been some complaints about the amount of cutscenes there are in the game. I 100% agree with this. I am pretty sure the devs are trying to hide the loading screens but goodness, I hate seeing a cutscene when I open a dang door! The cutscenes in the demo are locked at 30 FPS I believe. To be fair, the devs are taking away this cap in the full version.

I’m most excited to play a new co-op only game with my buddies online. I’m getting older and my reflexes aren’t great anymore. Something that I can enjoy with my friends without being super competitive is going to be a breath of fresh air.

Busy and Teleworking

During my time with OCD, I kept going on in my head, thinking that I would never get better. Please, don’t do that! It is already hard enough trying to focus on treatment and dealing with the day-to-day struggles of OCD. Give yourself a break, let the process work, and keep pushing forward.

This was one of my biggest hurdles. Getting out of the mindset that I was going to be scarred by this mental disorder. Every single day, there was a worry that was almost constantly on my mind. “Will I ever be normal again?” or “This is how I am going to be, I have to live like this and accept it”. Don’t do this to yourself if you can help it. I think it caused me to take two steps forward and three steps back. It really put a damper on my progress.

Once I let OCD go, I got better. OCD sucks bad but, to get better, acknowledge its presence and let it go. Don’t ignore it though, as that can be an avoidance compulsion. Think of it as seeing something out of the corner of your eye, you glance at it, then you go on about your day. This is what you need to do with your OCD. If you are thinking about OCD, you are most likely ruminating, which is a compulsion!

I hope some of this stuff is helpful to anyone with OCD. I know how lost I was on my journey and I found comfort in hearing about other people’s journey and success. I can’t wait for this blogging platform to allow comments. I want to get to know you all and interact with anyone who may read this.
I have been super busy at work lately! One of my old coworkers was pretty old school and told me that teleworking is only for people that want to start their weekends early. This so false that it isn’t even funny!

I started to telework about a year ago because of COVID. As for the statement above from my old work acquaintance, he could not have been more wrong. I have found productivity has increased a ton! No one is late from commuting, I have found people work and eat voluntarily, and I have that I am saving a ton of time from random people barging into my work station for no reason.

I miss all that stuff, aside from commuting. I miss people coming to say hi to me during the day. However, I have gotten so used to working from home that I don’t really know how I am going to adjust when I go back. I am a little nervous, to be honest. I am hoping they make this arrangement permanent.

If they do make teleworking a forever thing, I am moving. My family and I are going to move somewhere warmer and with a much lower cost of living. We like where we live because of family, but it is so expensive. Having extra money because of cheaper housing would be amazing and a big quality of life bump.

-russ

Getting Back Into Gaming With OCD

During my time with OCD, I kept going on in my head, thinking that I would never get better. Please, don’t do that! It is already hard enough trying to focus on treatment and dealing with the day-to-day struggles of OCD. Give yourself a break, let the process work, and keep pushing forward.

This was one of my biggest hurdles. Getting out of the mindset that I was going to be scarred by this mental disorder. Every single day, there was a worry that was almost constantly on my mind. “Will I ever be normal again?” or “This is how I am going to be, I have to live like this and accept it”. Don’t do this to yourself if you can help it. I think it caused me to take two steps forward and three steps back. It really put a damper on my progress.

Once I let OCD go, I got better. OCD sucks bad but, to get better, acknowledge its presence and let it go. Don’t ignore it though, as that can be an avoidance compulsion. Think of it as seeing something out of the corner of your eye, you glance at it, then you go on about your day. This is what you need to do with your OCD. If you are thinking about OCD, you are most likely ruminating, which is a compulsion!

I hope some of this stuff is helpful to anyone with OCD. I know how lost I was on my journey and I found comfort in hearing about other people’s journey and success. I can’t wait for this blogging platform to allow comments. I want to get to know you all and interact with anyone who may read this.

I have written about my OCD and I wanted to write a positive post about how I am doing right now. I’ll be honest, my Harm OCD had me quit gaming for a long while. It always worried me when I played games. I thought I would “like” violence aspect of certain games a bit too much. I thought it would fuel me going “crazy”.

Obviously this is stupid. OCD is just noise in your brain and has nothing to do with who you are or what you are going to become. The hard part is, trying to convince yourself of this when you have OCD is the wrong way to go about healing yourself.

I figured this out and finally got better. Now, I have ordered an Xbox Series X! I am really excited to get back into gaming in some of my free time. I know I can enjoy it again without OCD jumping in and ruining it for me.

OCD is not you, and it is not me either. Don’t let it take over the things you like to do. This is the opposite of what you should do in these situations. Please visit https://iocdf.org to find yourself a therapist and get on the right track to feeling better.

Next stop, Outriders demo on my new Xbox!

Outriders on GeForce Now

During my time with OCD, I kept going on in my head, thinking that I would never get better. Please, don’t do that! It is already hard enough trying to focus on treatment and dealing with the day-to-day struggles of OCD. Give yourself a break, let the process work, and keep pushing forward.

This was one of my biggest hurdles. Getting out of the mindset that I was going to be scarred by this mental disorder. Every single day, there was a worry that was almost constantly on my mind. “Will I ever be normal again?” or “This is how I am going to be, I have to live like this and accept it”. Don’t do this to yourself if you can help it. I think it caused me to take two steps forward and three steps back. It really put a damper on my progress.

Once I let OCD go, I got better. OCD sucks bad but, to get better, acknowledge its presence and let it go. Don’t ignore it though, as that can be an avoidance compulsion. Think of it as seeing something out of the corner of your eye, you glance at it, then you go on about your day. This is what you need to do with your OCD. If you are thinking about OCD, you are most likely ruminating, which is a compulsion!

I hope some of this stuff is helpful to anyone with OCD. I know how lost I was on my journey and I found comfort in hearing about other people’s journey and success. I can’t wait for this blogging platform to allow comments. I want to get to know you all and interact with anyone who may read this.
I have been messing around a bit with the new Outriders demo. I am trying to enjoy it but I am struggling to have consistency with GeForce Now. It is unfortunate because I really like the idea of the service.

I currently own Macs and I cannot run any games for Windows. The next best thing was GeForce Now. I thought streaming would be awesome. I have gigabit Fios and an eero pro WiFi 6 setup. What else could I need to run pretty much any PC game that I want?

I am just going to be flat out honest here. It runs like garbage on my set up. There will be moments that I am thinking WOW! This is amazing! But, more often than not, I am underwhelmed and frustrated. I click the left mouse button to fire and there is a noticeable lag to when my character fires his gun. To me, it is unplayable. I hope it gets better but, as of right now, I am cancelling my founders subscription and I was able to buy a Xbox Series X.

OCD and Buying Useless Stuff

I am terrible with money. I get the ooo shiny feeling whenever I see something new that interests me. It is really becoming a problem that I need to reign in.

I don’t fully blame my OCD for this but, it is a big part of it. I tend to research a ton of stuff all the time to keep my mind busy on things other than my intrusive thoughts. Doing this causes me to find something that I want to buy, then, I buy it. It makes me feel like crap because I am taking away chances for my wife and daughter to get things, or even to save.

I have to stop this. This is not good and I need to find another avenue to spend my time. Blowing money is not fair to anyone and I have to get it under control. I am considering canceling my credit cards and going all debit. Can’t spend money with one of those that you don’t have!

Sorry for the ranting. I am just beating myself up over this today. Hopefully, this is a wake up call that will finally get me to change my habits. I am almost feeling like this may be a compulsion. I research to get away from intrusive thoughts, then I buy something to make me feel better. I wonder what my therapist would say about this. Might be time to schedule an appointment.