What the Sims Taught Me About Life

Part of my childhood memories involve playing on the original Nintendo game system with my brother – games like Ice Climber, Rush ‘n Attack, Kung Fu, Zelda.  I’ve always liked playing video games, but wasn’t very good at it.  My brother was always much better than I was even though he is 4 years younger than me.  I remember being left on the ice below (and losing a guy) because my brother got tired of waiting for me to make my next platform jump and moved his Ice Climber up to the summit by himself.

"The Sims: Bustin' Out" - the needs

When I had a chance to get my own game system as an adult, I bought a PS2, and eventually, I got “The Sims: Bustin’ Out” thinking it would be a fun game. Once past the early stages of the game, however, it stopped being so fun… more frustrating. “The Sims: Bustin’ Out” measures 8 needs: home aesthetics, recreation, bladder/GI, social interaction, comfort, sleep, food and hygiene, and you need to keep them met at sufficient levels to live life and achieve goals. I couldn’t, for the life of me, understand why I couldn’t keep doing one task after another, why I needed 8 hours of sleep each night, why I couldn’t do more than one thing after work, and why I couldn’t achieve the goals on sheer force of will. There were too many limitations.

I have since realized that “The Sims” is closer to reality than how I envision my life.  This is some of what I’ve learned about life from playing “The Sims”:

  1. If you don’t get enough sleep for a little while, you can still function and hold things together, but continue not getting enough sleep and one day you will sleep through your alarm and miss work.
  2. If you are in a perpetual state of exhaustion, you may also find yourself falling asleep in not-so-comfortable places.
  3. You are also bound to become an emotional wreck if you don’t get enough rest and renewal; this means you may find yourself crying in the middle of the living room or getting into arguments with friends and/or family for no good reason.
  4. What you need to keep balance and to find rest and renewal in your life may be different from what others need; it is based on who you are. 
  5. Your energy really is limited; most of the time, you can do one, maybe two, things after work; continue to try fitting more things in and you will reach exhaustion, your mood will be negatively affected, and you will likely find yourself back at #1.
  6. If you zero out on any need, you will not be able to focus on much of anything else until that need has been met.
  7. You have to keep renewing your factors, because you will become depleted.

“The Sims” remind me that Sabbath-keeping is important.  It helps me to be in a frame of mind/being to connect to God, to my community, and to myself.

Do you play “The Sims” on any platform?  If so, what have you learned from it?  If not, is there a game from which you have learned something about life?  What is the game and what have you learned?

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2 Responses to What the Sims Taught Me About Life

  1. Carrie says:

    Love it!

    I play the Sims on FB sometimes. I think I have a LOT more energy in real life than my Sim does 😉

  2. artofsabbath says:

    You do, Carrie, you do! Welcome back.

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