I recently graduated with bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering. I have three elder siblings (two sisters and a brother, eldest of all). Now before completion of my degree my father used to support our family with elder brother occasionally chipping in. Toward the end of my degree my father retired, and my brother stopped contributing to the family. The problem is, I know I have to work hard and establish myself quickly and support my family but I overlook the situation and play game or surf internet all day (I don’t enjoy doing this but still I do and feel empty)and when its evening I say to myself ‘I will start it tomorrow’, and the he cycle goes on. It is not like I don’t love my field of study I love it, but I have this ‘I will do this tomorrow’ kind of attitude. I think I have been like this for quite a long time now.
So please advise me how to improve my attitude or behavior toward my life and start doing something productive out of my time.
I will be very thankful for this service please help me as I really want to change this behavior! I apologize for any grammatical mistake as English is not my native language. Thank you!!!! (From Pakistan)

A:  The transition out of college into supporting your family sounds daunting, and the games and internet are distractions. I would begin the mornings by doing two things. The first is a gratitude review from the day before — write down three things you have gratitude for as you awake. The second thing is to then write down three things you must do BEFORE you play a game of surf the web. Do these things and then set your timer for ten minutes and let yourself play the game or surf the web.

The process of thinking about something good in your life, having a brief to-do list — then taking a brief break should start to break the cycle you are in. Each time you get to the game and internet part of the cycle your job is to begin again by thinking of something that brings you joy. Think of the people you love, go for a walk, talk to a friend. They disruption of the cycle involves you thinking and doing something positive, having a few goals on your agenda, and then allowing yourself a brief time with the internet and games.

Wishing you patience and peace,
Dr. Dan
Proof Positive Blog @ PsychCentral