Where I Am Mentally: April 2021

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One of the things that I have been wanting to do for a while is document my mental status over time so I can see how I grow as a person. While I am not one to usually air out my “dirty laundry” online, I figure my blog is a great place to at least talk about some of the things on my mind and where I feel I am in recovery. It’s no secret that I have had troubles with alcohol in the past and my terrible diet from my teens into my early adulthood has certainly also caught up with me. 2021 and beyond is a focus on mental, physical, and dietary health in a number of different ways, and I figure the easiest way to reflect on that is to write it up on the blog.

Here’s the first entry in that series.

Sleep

Trying to sleep is one of the most difficult parts of my life right now. My mind is usually firing on all cylinders in one degree or another. Even if I am failing to focus on something, I am thinking about a lot of things all at once which makes it really hard to find the time to put all of my effort into a singular thing. I have noticed that it is much easier for me to focus on a physical task rather than a mental one right now, therefore I am more likely to be interested in going out and doing something rather than staying in and doing something. While this is something that would be great for me, we are still not in a place where outdoor activities are easy to come by due to COVID restrictions and some of the idiots that I see in town. I live in Indiana if that tells you anything; Covidiots are all over the place.

With my mind constantly firing on all cylinders, trying to sleep is a chore in of itself. Trying to get a sleep schedule down is something that is nearly impossible for me to do right now and is something that I am going to work on over the next month or so to see if I can improve it. Part of that is my anxiety since sooner or later I really want to get back to my professional endeavors, but to recover, I do need to spend some time working on myself before I can have any reasonable expectations of being able to do so. Since I think of this type of thing constantly despite knowing there is no reason to do so right now, I have a hard time sleeping. Even when I can get these things off my mind, it’s still hard to sleep for a multitude of other issues relating to trying to improve my diet and exercise.

Anxiety

Nope.

Hobbies

Those really close to me know how I felt about the new league launch. Ultimatum, while amazing in concept, was a complete a total crushing blow to Path of Exile right from the start with terrible queue times, priority treatment for streamers, and server issues that made the game genuinely unplayable for over 12 hours. Only a very small percentage of players were able to make any significant progress which made “world firsts” something that are not even legitimate at this point. Anyone doing something first in the league is most likely there because 99.9% of the player base that wanted to play at that time weren’t even able to play, therefore it severely diminishes such accomplishments. While I don’t personally care about such a thing, such endeavors also mean more items get put into the economy which also means that the economy stabilizes more rapidly.

A slow economy means starting the league is a bit more of a hindrance for newer players, which means those that are not dedicated to the game are more likely to just quit and play something else. This has been a major frustration for a lot of us who are trying to get their friends and/or family into playing the game. When you are constantly having to reassure them that things get better, they are highly likely to just give up and play something else. Grinding Gear Games is going to have a rough time growing their player base if this is how they are going to handle league starts going forward, especially since there is growing discontent over the fact that they partially sold their company over to Tencent, a company that is notorious for ruining the games that they acquire. We can already see through the lens of the Chinese version of the client “pay to win” mechanics that severely diminish the skill and reward system of the game.

Regardless, I am enjoying the league right now since the server and queuing issues seem to be gone for the most part.

Playing rhythm games right now has mixed results since it is difficult to focus on them. It is time consuming trying to stop myself from becoming rusty. Since I am having a difficult time focusing, it is nearly impossible for me to make progress in 7-key. I’ve been playing a lot of one-handed 4-key in DDR-style charts with a focus on accuracy lately. One of my goals is to full combo every single song available in the original DDR Extreme arcade cabinet, a challenge which is only going to be difficult due to a select few songs that are difficult even for veterans of the game playing on a high quality dance pad. In essence, I am clearing every single DDR song in the game with only two fingers on my right hand on the arrow keys, and I am doing so with “sudden death” active, therefore a single mistake will result in me failing the song.

I also refuse to use modifiers that are not normally available in the game, therefore there is no using CMods that make the chart easier to read. BPM changes, stops, and any other gimmicks in charts are going to remain there.

Songs like The Legend of MAX and Paranoia Survivor Max ONI (PSMO) are going to be a nightmare since they require both fast inputs and accurate inputs to guarantee only great judgments and higher. A lot of the skills used to ensure consistent accuracy go out the window when you’re only using one hand and two specific fingers on four keys due to some of the limitations that one has in their hand. While it’s certainly more difficult to develop these skills when playing on an actual dance pad due to the physicality of playing on feet, there is definitely going to be a higher ceiling in regard to skill playing the way that I am playing the game, and I am starting to see some of the limitations of that. Nevertheless, as someone that has always struggled with pain in their hands, I am having a lot of fun pushing those boundaries to the point where I am at least able to clear 18s and 19s when I am at my best.

Streaming

I know I’ve been putting off streaming, but I am tentatively planning to stream something on YouTube or Twitch on Wednesday and again on Friday. I have some ideas of what I could stream, but I am going to play it by ear for now and try to get something interesting going. Would be great to have someone else available for commentary or something, but not sure that would work out. If I stream Path of Exile, Dam is the only other person on the server that plays all that much, and he’s asleep at the hours that I would be streaming.

About the author

Aesthemic

Aesthemic is a rhythm game and puzzle addict. You'll find him posting random stuff on Twitter, struggling in Beatoraja, or getting destroyed in Puyo Puyo online. Unless otherwise stated, all content on the blog is written by him.

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