Skills for Life: How Gaming Helps in Everyday Life


Social gaming helps develop superb life skills.

For many of us gamers, gaming is life. Itís the first thing we think of when we wake up in the morning and every moment away from the screen is something akin to torture. We eat, sleep and live to game. Unfortunately, there comes a time when we have to deal with the outside world or what non-gamers like to call ďreal life,Ē and it may come as a surprise to some to learn that our gaming skills can come in handy. In fact, gamers are often better prepared for life than those who spend their days watching Netflix.

How is that? Well, if youíre a seasoned gamer like the rest of us, then youíll recognize the following skills immediately.

Dealing with People

There was a time when playing video games with your friends meant sitting around the same TV playing multiplayer with a console. These days, gaming has gone global, and social video gaming is bigger than ever.

Forty-eight percent of gamers play social games.

Contrary to popular belief, we gamers are a social group and as you may have guessed, making us quite skilled at dealing with people. If multiplayer games like the Guns of Icarus have taught us anything, itís how to work together as a team, listen to our peers and take responsibility for specific processes or duties within the group. Pretty much the best life skills you could possibly bring into a career of any kind.

And incredibly enough, we learn all that from gaming. But thatís not all.

Decision-Making

The ability to think on your feet and make reasoned decisions based on the data at hand is what separates the exceptional from the good. This decision-making skill often results in longer gameplay and less time wasted. So, it stands to reason that any gamer who spends a chunk of their free time in front of a screen will develop this ability quickly.

Gamersí decision-making is often so adept that this can translate into impressive skills in other games, such as football and even poker. In fact, several Hearthstone players have made the leap from esports to poker with incredible success.

But itís in your everyday ďreal lifeĒ that this skill will have the most profound effect. In everything from your career to your love life, the ability to make the right decisions for you, your team or your family will make you the person that everyone turns to when a decision needs to be made. Itís a significant responsibility and a huge confidence booster.

Time Management

Have you ever spent an inordinate amount of time replaying a level just to find that hidden coin or complete some side quest? Of course, you have, and weíre all guilty of indulging in wasting time wasting on our favorite games. However, gamers are generally good at time management, and this is particularly true of those that play team games. Understanding your task and completing it as efficiently as possible is something that is second nature to most gamers and even though you donít realize it, youíre probably doing the same thing in your everyday life.

Kill all zombies!

Have a job to do at work? Get it done right, quickly and with a minimum of fuss. Itís like killing all the zombies in Dead Rising 3 in as short a time as possible. We all do it; itís just that we donít think about it while doing so. And while it may sound a little odd to liken zombie-killing to real-life skills, the ability to competently finish tasks at a given time is an excellent life skill that a lot of people donít possess.

Handling Unexpected Issues

Apocalyptic creatures coming out of the woodwork, sudden storms and ammo shortages; gamers deal with unexpected situations more than most. And how they react to such adversity often decides their fate and how long they can stay in the game. As a matter of fact, if some game lacks unexpected scenarios, then we often deride it for being too predictable. Yes, thatís right, we live for the bumps on the road.

So, how does this translate to real-world skills? We think you know the answer to that already, but weíll explain anyway. Life throws all manner of unexpected situations at us, and a wrench in the works is expected at least once a week if not more.

Whether these situations are something as complex as family issues or something as trivial as a need for milk when the store is closed makes no difference. As gamers, our skills to react to unforeseen circumstances can see us enjoying pancakes for breakfast while our milk-less non-gamer friends eat dry cereal.

Useful life skills? You better believe it.

Improve Your Job Prospects

Now it should come as no surprise that all the skills mentioned above help in the job-seeking process. Would you hire an individual who can make good decisions, is a team player and can manage their time efficiently? Sounds like the perfect employee to us, which is why gamers often find interviews and work quite easy to handle.

There have been numerous studies and surveys carried out in the last decade aiming to quantify the value of gaming in the workplace and whether gamers make good employees and the results are conclusive. Gamers do, in fact, make excellent employees, and taking short gaming breaks at work has been proven to boost performance and productivity.

At one time, gaming was thought of as a childish hobby that you should hide from your employers. Nowadays, though itís something that you should put on your resume as companies start to understand the value of gamers and the skills that they can bring to the table.

So, the next time a non-gaming friend asks you why youíre wasting your time in front of the screen ask them this: Does their time on social media or in front of the TV help them hone their life skills?

Weíve always known that gaming is enjoyable, and to have the fun of playing is, well, itís the fun, isnít it? But now that we have a deeper understanding of the human mind and the effects of gaming, itís awesome to find that gaming helps us in ways that watching TV shows and scrolling through newsfeeds simply canít. Itís the ultimate life-skills developer, and if you have any sense, youíll never stop.