Tuesday, July 21, 2015

HabitRPG - A Fun Way to Make or Change Habits

Okay, I admit I'm a creature of habit.  I have habits surrounding myself, finances, writing, my family...  Sometimes I like the habits and sometimes... well, some of my habits aren't as healthy as others.

My Avatar on HabitRPG
For example, I used to drink soda at least twice a day.  If I missed a day, I felt off, the world felt a bit wrong.  Last summer, I decided I needed to change that habit.  Diet sodas are unhealthy; so I decided to quit.  At first, no sweat.  But about two weeks into the change, I started to think about getting a soda constantly.  It took another 2-3 weeks before that stopped, but then I would be hit with the need to get a soda in varying situations.  I never realized how much soda I drank until I stopped drinking it.  I'm happy to say it will be a year next month that I quit drinking soda, and I am very proud of myself.  It wasn't easy, but now I don't even want something other than water.  Or coffee (the drink of the gods).

But it isn't easy to change a habit.  When I first heard of HabitRPG, I wondered how it would all work.  Now that I'm using it, I'm in love!  HabitRPG makes a game out of setting up/changing habits.  You create your own avatar, that represents you in the game.  You find people to form parties; you join guild of liked-minded people; you go on quests or compete in challenges to earn treasure.   All while becoming a better you.

You see, the creators behind HabitRPG use gamification to help people with their habits.  Gamification is the use of game thinking and game design elements, including game mechanics, in non-game environments/applications.  Basically, people engage in any activity better if that activity comes wrapped in a game.

Now I'm working on incorporating meditation in my daily routine (to combat stress, induce diffuse thinking, and help with my writing) as well as strengthening my writing habits.  Wish me luck!

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