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Effects of adrenaline?

KeromeKerome Love, love is mysteryThe Continent Veteran

Recently I was watching a playthrough of a highly recommended video game on YouTube, and I noticed that the adrenaline boost — from the tension and excitement — caused some changes in mood, but also some inner turbulence. There was some attachment to the game’s story, some desire to see certain outcomes in the game.

I found it quite challenging to determine exactly what was going on inside, but I could tell that it wasn’t really conducive to inner peace. So I was wondering what exactly was causing the discomfort — what precisely was causing the turmoil. I haven’t noticed the same thing with exciting movies, for example I watched Inception not so long ago and that has quite a few exciting action sequences.

It’s left me a bit puzzled about what was disturbing my inner equilibrium, frankly. I don’t think it is just adrenaline, or even threat to the characters you identify with, but there was some difference between the two experiences that caused one to be disturbing and the other not. Very curious.

Would love to hear your input,



  • johnathanjohnathan ICBI Canada Veteran
    edited March 8


    Is it possible it is simply that your subconscious is aware that you have no control of what happens in a movie so does not look to control the outcomes of what's on the screen?

    In video games the subconscious is use to controlling what we see to a certain extent.

    When watching a walk through your mind is more likely to be in subconscious video game mode when it should simply be resting in viewing movie mode.

    The subconscious causing anxiety or disruptions based on the lack of control it is use to having in video game mode.

  • KeromeKerome Love, love is mystery The Continent Veteran

    It could be that, @johnathan, or the tendency of the game footage to look over the shoulder always at what was being shot at, or the fact that the game footage went on for a long time.

    I’ve noticed my inner equilibrium re-establishing itself, I was reading some of the teachings of Ajahn Chah this afternoon, I think that helped.

  • BunksBunks Australia Veteran

    I can relate re: adrenaline when it comes to sport @Kerome.

    In fact, I am at a point now where I often don’t watch my favourite football team play as it causes me too much stress and anxiety.

  • paulysopaulyso usa Veteran

    adrenaline,to me is an emotional rush.maybe it's normal.excited about a game,etc.guilty.

  • personperson Don't believe everything you think the liminal space Veteran

    Maybe something to do with your own personal attachments? Like the video games gives rise to past feelings of attachment and disturbance that the movie doesn't.

  • lobsterlobster Veteran

    Believe it or not, I have a body-brain. It sweats and wets and stimulates whilst engaged in/watching/engrossed by violence ... oops :s

    It is a demon that I have not mastered.

  • KeromeKerome Love, love is mystery The Continent Veteran
    edited March 9

    @person said:
    Maybe something to do with your own personal attachments? Like the video games gives rise to past feelings of attachment and disturbance that the movie doesn't.

    Could be, I think I still have the tendency to get sucked into video games in a way that I do not with movies, and coming across the same old mechanisms even when it is someone else doing the playing engages some old habits. A movie tends to put you in a passive, relaxing frame of mind, a game keeps you actively engaged.

    Its funny, for me the enchantment with the genre goes back all the way to the likes of Ultima Underworld back in the early 1990’s, but I seem to have become more sensitive to the tension that some of these action sequences engender. I used to experience all these sensations as ‘fun’.

    I really notice nowadays that some of these games are sources of relentless grim pressure on the player, with barely a point of light escaping the scenario.

    But certainly I think that with adrenaline a lot of bad habits come into play, people tend to shout, get excited, caught up in fight or flight response, all sorts. It’s not only games, but as @bunks says, sports can also drag you out of a peaceful state if you happen to be identified with one team.

  • KeromeKerome Love, love is mystery The Continent Veteran

    Strangely enough, I’ve noticed some of the same effect after a disagreement between my mother, my stepfather and me... she has agreed to do some design work for my uncle, wanted to arrange the project in a particular way, and we warned her that it could cause some trouble, which led to an extended wrangle about how she has too much to do already.

    But now I notice that this wrangle has disturbed my calm even though I didn’t think I got very emotionally involved, it’s like my inner peace has somehow become rather fragile. This whole living together business certainly complicates things.

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