Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Life is a Video Game

Life is a video game. You need to sleep and eat to get more energy. Sports and work help you to get a level up. Most of the time in life, just like in video games, you can count on the basic programming to stay the same.

2017-18 Fran Outreach Volunteers

I have worked in the shelter for almost 2 months. I thought life is something special and getting sleep/food and being allowed to go to work is a privilege. But then a friend of mine told me: “Life is just a video game. If you fail you can restart and live the American dream by creating the best of your life.” I love the idea of thinking life is a video game; when you make a wrong decision and you want to restart you could do it. But what about the point in the game when you don't have an ‘extra life’ anymore?

What happens when you do not have an ‘extra life’ left but you want to restart?
Is there a limited chance to restart your way of living?
What if you played in a team and another teammate made a wrong decision and because of that you lost your last extra life?
Is the rest of your life now hopeless?
Are you not able to change your way of living anymore?

I occupy my mind with these critical questions. It felt like our guests are on the point where they just have one extra life left or maybe no extra life anymore. Some of them seem very hopeless and want to quit the game. But they are really thankful that we give them the opportunity to refill their power bank. We offer them a bed to sleep and we give them food without conditions. But they are not able to get a level up and get out of their situation and get an extra life just with sleep and food. Therefore there is a ‘cheat’ installed in every game. We call it “Case Manager”. They help with getting a job and a place to raise energy. They are the ‘power ups’. If one can see, there is always a chance to go on. Even if you are hopeless and do not see a change and you want to quit, you should look for ‘power ups’ and use them! They are always useful! Before every final enemy of each level somebody offers you help. It is your choice to accept or turn down any help but there is nothing bad about accepting help. It is just using every ‘power up’ you got. And to be honest, every good video gamer is using every ‘power up’ he can get!

But keep in mind. You can stand on both sides. So don't take for granted the help you get and offer help if you are able to do so. To put it in a nutshell, life is about give-and-take, in contrast to video games!

By: Verena Boehm
Hometown: Dillingen/Saar, Germany