Runs In Transit

Month: May, 2015

Three Life Lessons Learned from Video Games

I’ve always thought I could write a book on what I’ve learned from video games. What it’d be about, I’m not entirely sure, but it’d definitely cover some of the lessons I’ve learned and how they’ve shaped who I am. Here are three you might find interesting:

From League of Legends, I’ve learned that life is a large sample set – you’re going to have good days and bad days. Sometimes the bad days will line up and you will feel like they never end, but it is important to remember that this is a result of variance and that they won’t last forever. In the long run, random things will occur out of your control, and it is far more important how you react to them. You are never hopeless. Instead of dwelling on the bad, be stoic and attempt to change what is in your control. When life gives you lemons, keep a positive attitude and do what you can to better yourself. If that increases your good days by just 1%, then you’re doing a good job.

From Halo, I’ve learned to never chase. Well, chase your dreams, but not head-on and with a lack of awareness. The thing is, success is scarce, and there are many people with the same ambitions as you. The majority will approach them the exact same way, and this becomes predictable and ineffective. Actualize your goals, but think outside the box on how you approach them. Sometimes it may be better to arrive at a position of advantage and wait. Other times, the best approach may appear unlikely and hidden from sight. Chasing can be useful, but understand that each situation is different and the best decision may not always the most obvious.

From Fallout, I’ve learned that the decisions you make are permanent but not lasting. We cannot change the decisions we made in the past, yet they do not make up who we are. Time is separated into the past, present and future, but our identity coexists between each period. When you make a mistake, that mistake may follow you and influence many events in your life, but your ability to feel regret and do something about that mistake are always available. Humans are not a result of their actions, but something more. Just because you burned a bridge yesterday doesn’t mean you can’t repair it today. Don’t become attached to what you’ve done, but focus on the things you can do, and make sure they reflect the type of person you want to be.

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The Myth of Sysiphus

Confined to the underworld and faced with certain death, Sisyphus tries to escape and liberate himself from death. His plan fails and he is caught by the gods, who decide on his punishment. They decide that Sisyphus is to be condemned to the meaningless task of carrying a boulder up a mountain, only for the boulder to roll down the mountain when he reached the top, for the rest of eternity.

Philosopher Albert Camus once asked: when Sisyphus witnesses the boulder roll to the bottom of the mountain and marches down to start anew, what is he thinking? Surely it cannot be hope, because there is none. Yet it cannot be anger, because such emotion would be useless.

The truth is, we are Sisyphus. Our lives have no meaning and it is likely that they never will. Each day, we carry on begrudging activities like work or school. We, like Sisyphus, accept our fate and continue pushing. Yet there is one thing we can always do: give meaning to our actions.

When Sisyphus walks down the mountain, he is neither hopeful nor angry. He is content with his struggle and accepts that although his life is meaningless and even absurd, he will live it to the fullest.

Thus, Sisyphus is happy, and we can be as well.

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