Earlier in my life
, I was an addict
Specifically, I was addicted to mudding, but that detail doesn't really matter here. What matters is that while I was an addict, everything was simple. I didn't have to worry about what to do with my free time; mudding took over all that time and then some. I didn't worry about networking and making friends; my addiction blinded me to their importance.
While I was mudding, my goals were simple. I longed only for more XP, more gold, or more equipment. And because mudding was such a large part of my life, my life goals became correspondingly simple. Although perhaps shallow, life was good.
But at some point after watching one too many fellow mudders fall academically, I decided to quit. I weaned myself of my addiction, and moved on. And this left me in a confused state from which I've never fully emerged. Now when I have free time I have to figure out something to do with it. I've tried hobbies and learning for the sake of learning, which is all somewhat fulfilling, but honestly nothing has replaced the security I had as an addict. When I was an addict, I knew who I was.