Up until recently I have been struggling to find a good metaphor in which to describe life. Tony Robbins talks about the multitude of metaphors ways that people describe life as. Some calling it a war - and thus they're always on edge, some people calling it a test and thus they are always studying.
Then the other night, I came upon a metaphor that I think fits (at least for me):
Life is like a videogame
1) Life has a definite possibility of given outcomes - Now I'm a little bit old school so I'll go ahead and date myself by saying I remember playing on a Commodore 64 but mainly got my 'gaming' experience in by playing games like Galaga and Street Fighter at the arcade* and Super-Mario Brothers at home. Whatever the game was, there typically was a goal to blow up as many attacking space ships, beat up as many traveling martial artists or rescue poor old Princess Toadstool from an evil turtle. They all had some GOAL that you were shooting for - likewise in life, it's better to have goals than to go without them.
2) If the game is too easy & not challenging enough we feel like we got ripped off - Now, I don't know about you but, if you wait anxiously for the newest game out there called Super-Stab-fighter Deluxe...or something...and it's been promoted by all these videogame magazines as being "the best game since that other really cool one!" and you wait outside of Best Buy for two days like my brother would** and pay a cool $75 dollars to be the first to purchase Super-Stab-fighter-Deluxe only to beat the games 87 levels in under 10 minutes - wouldn't you feel ripped off? Life is like that in a way, we need a challenge. if everything gets handed to us on a silver platter without effort we feel as if we lack purpose. But if we struggle to achieve our dreams they then feel so much more rewarding.
3) You can decide to live off ACTION or RE-ACTION - Sometimes you have to choose whether to ACT or RE-ACT.True Story : So the first time, I played Batman -Arkham Asylum I was over my lil bro's place. He started the game from the very beginning and - being the old-school player that I am I was absolutely floored by the opening sequence. While credits were rolling. This cinematic scene seemed to be coming to an end and eventually the camera focused on a light. So I just sit their, holding the controller waiting for something to happen and then after looking at me with a look that says "You idiot" for a full minute, my lil bro finally says "You may want to move...or something". I moved the controller and suddenly what was a second ago an opening movie turned into me playing the actual game. A very awesome game if I might add. That moment taught me something unique - if you want something - like a date, a certain amount of money, a better lifestyle - you have two choices you can a) wait for something to happen or b) you can take action and make something happen.
4) You have 99 'lives' so to speak until you get it right. - Failure is something that videogames in a lot of ways encourage. People close to me that have been to my house know that I'm obsessed with playing both versions or Star Wars Battlefront - repeatedly, when I'm bored on my now out-dated X-box or as I like to call it X-box Classic. One thing you get to do on this game, over and over again, is die and then respawn - or instantly come back to life in the same place you were before or a different place. It's learning from what you did wrong the last life(or year - or hour) that makes you better in this life - let's say as the Sniper Class of Storm Trooper***. Failure is sometimes the greatest teacher.
5) Mastering the videogame is possible - Now, again I've mentioned my lil bro - who I love. He however, loves schooling me on just about every videogame we play together - which I hate. The one exception being the aforementioned Battlefront game which we tend to end up about even on. One thing I will say about my lil bro is that he has 'Mastered" the videogame. Whenever he buys a game it is completed or conquered within a week or in some cases a matter of hours. The question you might want to ask yourself is "What can I do today to start mastering my life?" If you're the type that plays a videogame with excitement and expectation knowing that you can reach the exciting achievement that marks 'conquering' the game. I lay the gauntlet down to you and ask you to dare to bring that same excitement and expectation to your own personal life whatever challenge or goal you may be facing.
So in closing my life is becoming more and more like a videogame.
But what's more important is - what metaphor do YOU apply to your own life? I'd love to hear your opinion - please leave any comments, compliments and/or constructive criticism below.
Thanks so much for reading and I hope you have a great day!
* In my day, we used to have video arcade's where stand-alone video games were played and taunts were spewn back and fourth until the guy on the left of me playing Samurai Showdown realized that he had just met someone who was unafraid to 'perfect' him with Hanzou's fireballs.
**OK I might be exaggerating a little bit or likely a lot here.
***Sniper Class of Storm Trooper - for your information, when playing Star Wars Battlefront II this is best used on the Kamino aka the cloning facility board. Gosh - I love sniping me some 'droids.