How to Overcome Nintendo 3DS Addiction (Or Gaming Addiction in General)

Gaming addiction is a real problem. Often it affects gamers who play games on the PC, Xbox 360 or PS3 more than anything else, but it is possible to get addicted to the Nintendo 3DS, and it's a condition that requires special care, patience and a true willingness to wean yourself off your addiction.

Before getting started though I'd like to point out that, if you are addicted to the Nintendo 3DS or you know someone who is addicted to the Nintendo 3DS seek professional help. I'm not a psychiatrist, I'm simply a gamer who has, at times, got a little too attached to certain gaming experiences but have come out the other side.

I still believe games are a great form of entertainment that can blend fantastic stories, engaging imagery and a powerful social experience, but if you're regularly sinking 3+ hours into games per day then you should probably work at taking control of your obsession, especially if this addiction is taking away from other aspects of your life (like actually creating something real compared to the mostly passive entertainment of gaming).

Here are a few strategies to help you overcome a Nintendo 3DS addiction, or addiction to really any form of video game:

  • Give yourself a greater goal. Video games are rife with objectives and a sense of purpose, but once these objectives replace achievement in the real world they become dangerous. Sit back with a pen and paper and ask yourself: what do I want to do with my life? Let yourself dream big and do not censor yourself. Ambitious purposes are much more likely to be attained. You may also want to read The Magic of Thinking Big by Dr. David Schwartz.
  • Remove video games from your environment. This could mean you simply give away or throw out your Nintendo 3DS, but there's often a lot of resistance to that sort of drastic action. Instead, pick a nice location (preferably in a different state) and treat yourself to a short vacation. Extend this for as long as you can. The point is to disconnect yourself from the internet, technology and gaming overall. Remove the "drugs" from your presence and you'll find it surprisingly easy to alleviate your reliance on them.
  • Build your self esteem. I know exactly why I would sink hours and hours into video games when I was younger: it boosted my self esteem. They were controlled environments where it somewhat inevitable to eventually win and thus feel good about myself. Self esteem is not something you can build overnight, but you might want to read 6 Pillars of Self Esteem to get you on your way. When you feel good about yourself you'll live responsibly and be less affected by addictions and impulses.

Overcoming addiction to the Nintendo 3DS (or gaming in general) can not be summed up in 500 words. This is a worldwide problem that a lot of people face. You, or the victim you know is not alone and there is plenty of help available. Gaming addiction can be beat.