Should I write about my YouTube addiction? Probably. I have gone back and forth with it over and over. And to be honest I know it will take me some time longer. The thing about an addiction is that you don't stop loving the thing you are addicted to. For me I still love watching YouTube. But what I'm seeing with my love for YouTube is that it is having unhealthy, adverse effects on my life.
I installed Opal, an VPN app on my phone that blocks YouTube, the New York Times and other things, about a month ago. But then my family started playing Wordle and Wordle was recently acquired by the New York Times. I felt this pressure from my family to play the game every day, but since Opal was blocking it, I had to turn off my VPN completely. And this left me vulnerable to going on YouTube. Last night I drank coffee way too late and I couldn't fall asleep until about 2:00 AM and I was on YouTube that entire time. I realized that as much as I love playing Wordle for five minutes a day with my family, it makes YouTube too tempting for me, and I cannot trust myself to have it available at all times. My family was enabling my YouTube addiction without really meaning to.
But this time, I am not blaming my family for me watching YouTube. I am taking responsibility for my actions, and that is just to say: I love watching YouTube, but I want to love more in my life. I want to love my life more, to love it more than YouTube. I want to build a relationship. I want to go outside. I want to build a career. I want to focus on myself and not feel a sense of shame or guilt that I didn't do anything and everything in my power to dedicate my life to others. I know in my heart that having my attention be monetized for $0.10 per minute or however much it is is a complete waste of time. I am 27 years old and with each day that goes by, I am just getting older and I have less of my life to live. I'm an adult now. I take full responsibility for what is happening to me in my life, and I realize that I don't want to end up like my father and his mother, my grandmother.
When it comes to my English grandmother, almost every memory I have of her is that she is watching TV. That woman watched TV all day every day for the majority of her waking adult life and I'm not even kidding. I once asked her if she ever wanted to go to Rome, and she was basically like, I'll never travel again and she wasn't that old. She complained a lot and never wanted to work or help around the house or do anything. My father at least has a job and a good life, but he still watches TV every evening when again he could literally be doing anything else. Him and my mother watch a lot of TV together, and they are both in denial about it. What's worse is that in our family home, the sofas by the TV are so comfortable and really low to the ground, so by the time you sit in them, it's very hard to get up. So you end up watching TV for longer because you need even more momentum to get out of your comfortable position and actually stand up. So, yes, I love TV and I love YouTube but I am picking to build and invest in my life more, and that is hard.
I need to find new, healthier ways to get dopamine comment wind down, process difficult things when I'm feeling them, deal with the fact that I am bored and realize that the novelty of a three-minute video of my new favorite TLC show is not worth it. It is not worth it to lose my life to the pursuit of the television watching. I am what I do, and I choose not to do this anymore. I choose to make it harder for me to watch YouTube. I choose to find alternatives. I choose to try and be my own role model, the one regarding television watching that I never had. I choose to acknowledge my addiction, to accept that I have one, I am no longer in denial about it. I no longer blame others for actions I could have taken for myself years ago. I'm actually going to try and download a 12 Step Program app on my phone and use it to get sober with YouTube. I need to come up with an acronym for TLC, my favorite reality TV and daytime watching network which a lot of my daily usage of YouTube stems from. There life crumbles. Time leaves cold. This life controlled. This life controlled. That's a pretty good one. I will stick with that and remind myself of it. Wish me luck in changing my life.