What is Gamification and How Do You Use It?

This past year has been difficult — there’s no denying that fact. The pandemic keeps people apart and puts up several obstacles, so it may be tough to conjure up motivation in your work or personal life. Gamification, the act of adding a motivational factor to any aspect of daily routines, can help. It’s time to cut yourself some slack and start gamifying your life. 

What Is Gamification?

The concept of gamification comes from, as the name suggests, games. Video and board games alike give you some sort of prize or recognition when you achieve a goal or win. When you take that dynamic and apply it to everyday tasks, you are gamifying your life.

This tactic is beneficial for the little things you’ve been putting off — cleaning, doing the dishes, filing taxes, even learning. However, gamification can also be a motivating factor during the pandemic. The extreme stress from COVID-19 can lead to a lack of focus, motivation and overall happiness. Gamification is a simple step that can put enjoyment into a task even on the hardest days.

How Do You Gamify?

You can turn anything and everything into a game. It only takes a bit of planning. 

The first step is to figure out what you need to complete. It could be a goal as big as working toward a promotion at your job or as simple as donating some old clothes. Once you have the task in mind, then you can decide on your prize.

The reward you’re working toward must be something you actively want. Otherwise, you may lose interest quickly. Just like the task, the prize can be something small or big — it all depends on you.

Then, define what success will look like for this specific task. For instance, you can set a time limit — if you complete the job within an hour, you win. If you want something more in-depth, you could create a point system. Vacuuming one room is one point, doing the dishes is another and once you reach a certain amount, you win and get your prize. 

Ultimately, the possibilities are endless and can be as complex or simple as you’d like. The idea is to make the task as enjoyable as possible and receive the desired reward. 

What Tools Can Help?

Throughout the pandemic, technology has helped people connect from afar. It can take your gamification to the next level. You’ll find plenty of apps to you get started, but these are some of the best:

  • SuperBetter

SuperBetter takes on the hard things in a creative way. You can complete simple tasks that help you work your way up to your ultimate goal. For instance, you can use this app to cope with mental health issues by battling “bad guys” and winning small competitions. The task could be to drink water, which helps you win the round.

  • Foursquare

Foursquare gets you up and out, exploring new things in your area or somewhere new. You earn points and compete with friends as you complete activities in pandemic-safe ways. 

  • Habitica

Habitica is the app to use if gamifying your life involves tasks specific to you. If you need to create new daily or long-term goals, simply add them to the app. You’ll also include the reward you want to achieve and work your way through it, checking off your progress as you go. Habitica adds true gameplay elements since you can fight off monsters to earn gold that connects to your goals. 

  • SmartyPig

If you want to gamify your money-saving strategy, use SmartyPig. This app puts the object you're saving for as your end goal and tells you when to put money aside for it. 

  • Fitocracy

Do you want to exercise and get active? Fitocracy immerses you in a role-playing game (RPG) where you can virtually fight off opponents or win mini-challenges. You’ll become healthier as you complete these goals. 

Get to Gamifying Today

Gamify every aspect of your life with these tools and tips. Gamification adds motivation, excitement and a sense of accomplishment to each task. No matter what you’re facing, you can work through it with a gamified approach. 

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