Health, Lessons in life

The addicted generation

Since the invention of alcohol, drugs and unhealthy food, we have had addictions. This is nothing new. But I honestly am extremely worried of the current and future generations. (yeah that means myself too)

It is so easy to find something to get addicted to. And you honestly don’t need to use much money for it, if at all. Porn, social media, junk food, over the counter medicine. Some of these things aren’t bad in small doses. But we do quite often forget where the limit is.

If you click on Youtube, you will find huge amounts of content. You can get addicted to always clicking the next video. And if that already isn’t enough, a huge trend right now is to look at people eat huge amounts of foods and make 15 000- 20 000 calorie challenges. And as it is human nature we end up craving food and chances are we watch those videos while eating food or go get junk food after watching them.

Is this type of content inherently bad? No. I honestly don’t think there is anything bad at watching someone sharing stories while eating and eating yourself. If you know where the limit goes…. but like with most addictions, they start from going over the limit couple of times too much. And not noticing it becoming a habit and an issue.

Our brain are amazing and at the same time they are very sensitive to over stimulation. They like it and they get used to it. Not only do we chemically get addicted to the dopamine hit that we get from food, porn or constant new content from social media. Our brains also form neurological pathways that make it hard to stop the habit of doing something. For a smoker it might be about holding the cigarette between their fingers, for someone addicted to coffee its about the making of the coffee, or having a cup to hold.

So how do we stop this from happening. I honestly think that having a conversation at schools and at home is something that is really important. Make it a family thing to go on walks as often as possible. Have a family dinner that is always without any phones (the parents included, no work is so important you can’t eat with your family) Make sure that kids under 8 don’t even use their phones/ipads etc unless absolutely necessary. And so on.

I am one of the children almost born with a phone in my hands. I know how hard parents and schools have to fight against kids using it. But honestly we will thank them later on. I am extremely thankful today for the limitations my parents had on my games and phone/computer. Did I fight them and think they were stupid at the time? Absolutely! Did I actually have a good childhood where I could have my own imaginary friends without having to have virtual reality glasses? Yes, and honestly it is the best thing ever.

Today’s world is an amazing place. There is so much that is changing and becoming better. The thing is, that we make things better and invent things because we have an imagination and creativity. If the future generations won’t get to play themselves and won’t become creative because all of the brain stimulation is given to them in the form of AR and VR, we will eventually stagnate.

This is why I implore all of the parents new and future ones, to form limits. Make your kids read books, make them draw, let them have their imaginary friends and play in the sand and get all dirty. This is all part of childhood. I get it is hard to do all of this, because everyone has the news gadget and then your kid wonders why you can’t have it. But when they are older they will thank you.

Thank you for reading! I hope this resonated with you. What do you think about all of the new technology and how much kids get to spend time online?

Xoxo, Alisa

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Goals, Personal development, Student Life

Gamify your success

When you play Super Mario, despite sometimes killing him of, you usually try again, and again…. and again. Sometimes this lasts for so long, you end up losing track of time, causing you to fail at doing something actually productive. But you can actually learn a lot from your games. There are numerous studies done, showing how gaming (a reasonable amount) is actually healthy and good for development. It helps with problem solving, motor skills and improves creativity. But today I am not talking about those benefits. I am however very open to write about that, if you are interested.

My topic today is about turning your actual life into a game. This is not originally my idea, a lot of people on YouTube and on their blogs, do challenges and use apps to make their life into a game. Some examples are Thomas Frank, The Goal Guys and Max Hertan.

What does it mean in practice? It means first of all that you have a goal. It could be writing a 10 page essay, or learning to do a split in 30 days. What ever your goal is, it can be gamefied. How to do it? I will break it down bellow, just like a real life video game, everyone will have their own approach, so feel free to tweak anything that you feel necessary.

  1. Have a goal. In a video game like Super Mario, it could be getting through a level or defeating Bowser. If it is defeating Bowser, you use the levels as your steps, until you are at the final showdown. If it is getting through a level your steps will be on a shorter scale, like jumping in the right place and killing the right enemy at the write time. So just like in a game, with a goal you have to come up with steps to win.
  2. Track your progress in a visible way. It wouldn’t be fun to play Mario or any other game, if you could never see how many enemies you have killed, or if you would never level up. That is the same in a real life goal. If you want to learn splits, make sure you document your progress. Even if you aren’t as close as you want to be to a split, at least you can see how far you have come, if you for example take pictures. Or you could mark in your calendar daily how many minutes you have stretched etc.
  3. Reward yourself. This is slightly controversial. There are a lot of people who are super successful, that think this is not helpful. And if you only do things because of a treat, instead of feeling the pride for getting healthier or for getting the project done. I can understand the concern. However I assume, that people don’t want to do things that seem big and daunting without some kind of small wins in between. So stretch while you watch a series you love. It’s two birds with one stone and it is more fun that way as well. Or after each page you have written of the essay you can go scratch your puppy. Make sure it is something that you don’t over do the rewarding tho. You don’t deserve to binge watch youtube for stretching your hamstrings for 2 seconds.
  4. Keep it real. if you start too many goals, too many projects and you try to make everything into a game, you might lose. You can’t play Mario, Call of Duty and solve the Rubik’s Cube all at the same time. The same thing with goals. Don’t beat yourself up for falling down or not getting through a level. Only beat yourself up, if you didn’t get back up to try again.

Here are some apps to helps you gamify your goals/tasks:

  • Habitica: Gamify Your tasks
  • Forest: Stay Focused
  • Fitness RPG- Gamify your Pedometer
  • Do it Now- RPG To Do List/ Task List

These are some of the apps you will get on an android device. I am sure there are many for the Apple phones as well.

Thanks for reading! This post was really fun to write, as this is something I want to incorporate more into my life, to get more exciting and interesting things done (as well as the mandatory ones). What are some of your goals you would like to turn into a game?

Thanks for reading ๐Ÿ˜‰ Untill next time

Xoxo