This post is part of my cornerstone content, written years ago, updated for today, and still inspiring wisdom and deep understanding.
Back a few years ago I was inspired by watching my son, Garrett, play a video game. (Pretty amazing, right?!)
It’s an online game called Rune-scape in which players have to collect valuables, mine precious metals, meet characters, and kill zombies to move up to the next level. While all valuables, metals, and people will give you gold coins, killing zombies does not.
Looking over his shoulder one afternoon, I asked my son what he got by killing the zombies, and he told me, “Nothing, just XP points.”
“What are XP points?” I asked.
“XP points are what you need to move up to the next level. Killing zombies doesn’t give you any money, but you need a bunch of XP points before you can move on. Even if you have enough money, if you haven’t killed enough zombies, you can’t move on.”
The game of life
This inspired me to think this game is a lot like life.
Money in and of itself doesn’t allow you to grow. You need experiences and the wisdom from those experiences to grow and eventually ‘level up.’
Learning takes time, and wisdom comes from the relationship between action and awareness. You get where you need to go by paying attention to what you’re doing and, even more importantly, what you’re learning from doing it.
Self-awareness gives you XP points
If you’re frustrated because you haven’t leveled up, imagine your job, responsibilities, and challenges as zombies you still have to kill. The opportunities for advancement you’re looking for are right in front of you when you look beyond the challenges to see the strengths and wisdom you’re gaining along the way. Don’t give up!
What challenges have you been facing, my friendly blog reader?
What lessons have they been teaching you?
I’d love to here your stories in the comments below.