A couple days ago, I was introduced to Pokémon Go by my husband. Against my initial protests, he installed the app on my phone. And thus began an obsession that’s been constant from the morning to late hours of the evening.
Pokémon Go has been addicting, and it’s taken a toll on my productivity for the weekend.
I used to think games like these were a waste of time. I’d secretly want to play, but resist even trying the apps because I didn’t want to get immersed into the pull of virtual reality. Similarly as to why I don’t keep junk food in the home, I didn’t want to add another drain to the limited amount of self-control we have each day.
Yet, I’ve come to realize some benefits of Pokémon Go.
It’s gotten my husband and I out of the house and walking around our neighborhood.
It’s a little embarrassing to say, but sometimes I don’t step out of the house. Not only is there a lack of fresh air and daily movement, but I feel closed off, isolated and disoriented on those days.
To capture a greater number and diversity of Pokémon, you need to get outside and walk around.
Ironically, we met our neighbors across the street whom we haven’t met through the past three years living in the neighborhood through playing the game. We also met another neighbor who had recently moved in at a garage sale down the block. A real-life albino squirrel near a Pokéstop added even more to our adventure.
It’s a source of childish fun in my day.
It’s been awhile since I’ve been gleefully excited about something.
While I never traded the playing cards, I grew up watching the cartoons. The act of exploring and capturing creatures like Weedle, Spearow and Bulbasaur with the Pokéball in the app brings me back to my childhood days.
When you’re having fun, you attract more people to you. Those of us who have more fun generally tend to be more fun to be around. There’s a vivacity and charm that emits when someone’s truly are having a good time.
Playing the game led to the realization that having fun isn’t usually a daily part of my day.
For better and for worse, my personality has practical roots. This hasn’t served me well in the past, although I started turning it around with the sabbatical and leap I took a couple years ago.
I’m currently still figuring out the balance of practicality and having fun in this early part of our freelancing journey. The game is a reminder that I could probably improve in including more fun in my day while building up the practical foundations.
There’s a connection to others playing the game.
Last night, we were at a birthday celebration gathering for a friend. Out of a group of ten, more than half of us were playing Pokémon Go.
It was hilarious comparing critters and exchanging tips on how to progress up the levels. There was instantly a connection to the new people we met that night. The game provided an element of laughter and play that can sometimes be missing from adult conversations and gatherings. While I’m sure the impact can go the opposite way with non-players, I probably wouldn’t be interested in connecting with the judgmental ones.
I’m getting some things done today so I can take a walk to a nearby park and capture some more Pokémon. It’s just one of the ways I’m finding balance between practical work and delightful play in my day. 🙂