6 Life Skills You Can Learn from Playing a Video Game

by Modis on June 30, 2016

Video Game Controller with gamesWhen I was younger, you could always find me playing a video game. Time wasted? I think not! I actually learned a lot from games like Sonic and Mario. Looking back on my childhood, I hand-picked six valuable life skills I gained from playing video games that still serve me well today.

Timing is Everything

Games like Mario taught us that timing is everything. We’ve all been there, and almost every game has them: you’re standing at the edge of a gap or deep chasm and the only way to reach your destination is by timing your movements perfectly to reach the next stepping stone or floating platform.

Knowing when to advance and when to stay put says a lot about your patience and ability to adapt to changes.

“We all make choices, but in the end, our choices make us.” – Andrew Ryan, BioShock

Obstacles Mean Progression

As the old adage goes, “When the going gets tough, the tough get going!” As games progress, they tend to become more difficult. Sometimes we find ourselves going backwards. Eventually, we realize this because things become less challenging, less intriguing, and more predictable.

As with life, the more we grow, the more challenges and difficulties we are sure to face. If things are becoming easier, redundant or commonplace, perhaps it’s time to reorient yourself. When we make a conscious effort to pursue tasks and activities that challenge us, we test and develop our skillsets. Think of new obstacles as an indicator that you are moving in the right direction.

“Without passion, you are already dead.”Max Payne 

Teamwork is Crucial

Sure, playing alone is great, but with the evolution of multiplayer gaming, teamwork has become essential to breaking down barriers and reaching new levels. Some games require coordinated attacks from multiple angles, and in order to accomplish this, you’re going to need help.

Teamwork teaches leadership, cooperation, coordination, efficiency and trust, all of which are vital to success when you face challenges that are much more than you can handle alone.

“Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence wins championships.”Michael Jordan

Connections are Valuable

The social aspect of video games has been taken to new heights with games like Ingress, which encourages players to get out into the real world, explore, meet new people, and make connections by capturing checkpoints all over the world. The more checkpoints you acquire, the more successful your team is.

Social networking is a valuable asset that translates into real life by helping to build healthy and beneficial relationships.

Multi-Task or Perish

This one is a no brainer. Most games require you to take care of more than one task at a time. For example, in The Sims, you can focus all of your time and energy on making money and building a huge house, but if you forget to eat, you’re going to die.

Knowing which tasks take precedence is both a balancing act and an art form that will get you far in life.

If You Die in a Video Game, You Have Another Life

This is the beauty of video games: knowing that if you don’t succeed the first time, you have infinite chances to try again. If you lose or die, learn from your mistakes and take a different approach.

Failure isn’t the end. It’s an opportunity to learn and grow.

All in all, video games are a great way to learn some of life’s most important lessons – the kind of lessons that help you land jobs, choose your battles, manage time, and make friends. Who said video games weren’t useful?


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