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Utilize Game Dynamics To Live A Healthier Life And Achieve Your Goals

Games. Millions of people around the world play them, and, it is not unusual for popular video game titles to generate much higher revenue than the movie industry’s comparable offerings. So, with vast numbers of people clocking in hundreds of hours of gaming every month, why hasn’t anyone explored how they can be harnessed to improve quality of life in tangible, practical ways?

Someone has. Her name is Jane McGonigal. She’s brilliant, beautiful, has a keen insight into the Millennials’ psyche, and is asking all the right questions. Let’s talk about one of her more popular creations, SuperBetter.

Change is hard, even if we know it will lead to a happier, healthier life. Yet, in video games, players enthusiastically put in hours of cognitively demanding effort without any kind of “traditional” compensation. Dr. McGonigal is fascinated by this phenomenon and has devoted her career to understanding and utilizing the power of games to change the world for the better.

One such result of this quest is SuperBetter, a free, web-based game in which, after signing up, you choose a goal you want to achieve, and then add quests that you can complete to work towards your objective. As you progress through your quests, you can level up by earning points in different character areas, e.g., mental, emotional, or social. If setting up your own quests sounds like too much work, you can select a power pack that contains a bundle of pre-assembled quests, activities, and obstacles that you’ll need to overcome before you can progress.

Your quest is not something you’ll have to endure alone. SuperBetter ensures that there are ways of incorporating allies into your adventure, either through hooking up with your Facebook friends, or by connecting you with other SuperBetter players. All the while, your goals are omnipresent at the top of the game’s page, serving as a constant reminder as to your overall progress.

If the game or the basic idea behind it piques your interest, I highly recommend reading Dr. McGonigal’s book, Reality Is Broken, or, at the very least, checking out her excellent TED talk.

Source Lifehacker, Vimeo

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