Gaming The System
It’s a little embarrassing to talk about. Well, maybe embarrassing isn’t the word. It’s one of those things that is both social accepted and socially awkward. Well, let me just get it out there. I play pokemon go. Well I ‘played’ pokemon go. I played since the day the app launched through about 3 weeks ago. It was an add on to my dog walk. I walk the dogs every day, and while I’m out on the walk I search for imaginary creatures and gather resources from all the pokestops… The game has been out for almost 2 years and I’ve played with a few gaps, a day or two here and there while traveling, for the entire period.
I know all the local pokestops and all the spots around my neighborhood where pokemon will appear. I’ve hatched many 10 kilometer eggs and I have many legendary creatures. But it’s all in my head, well and my phone… But is it?
So, about 3 weeks ago, my app glitched and my login failed. I haven’t logged into the app in over 6 months. It just stored my login. So I didn’t remember the password. So I couldn’t just log back in and start going again. Mind you, I have the password, it was just a pain to lookup. The effort involved in looking it up gave me pause.
I do really enjoy the game, but I’ve always had privacy concerns. There is a gaming company that now knows my patterns of walking over the last 2 years. I’m sure they can reach some conclusion about my use of the game and what it implies that would feel rather creepy. Recent Facebook revelations are already enough to handle. We all assumed they could be doing creepy things with our data, but the truth is spookier than the assumption. But I digress. That’s a topic for another article.
The interesting part for me, is what happened after I stopped playing. As a creature of habit, I still walk the dogs every day, I walk them on the same loop. I can go on auto-pilot. That’s my loop.
Interestingly, my 40 minute walk now takes 30 minutes without pokemon go. But that’s not the main story here.
I can still see the pokestops. I have played the game enough that I know where all the gyms and pokestops are. Specifically, there is a cemetery near my house and it has pokestops on every corner and a few gyms. They are virtual objects, they don’t exist in the real world. But now they do. I can see them. I know when I get to them and I can even visualize them as I walk by. My mind, through enough repetition, made them real.
Through the connection between geography and movement, the real world and virtual world have been bridged. I now see pokestops when I walk around.
So the question in my mind is, are they real? Did the game make them real? Or did I?
What else have I repeated enough in my mind to construct a reality? What do I believe because I gave it space in my head? What does this mean for my world view?
We all live on a series of constructed visions in our head. Beliefs that we reinforced by repetition. The same thought, the same words, swirling around in our head until they go from concept to concrete. We make our thoughts real.
Sometimes these manifested concepts help us, lift us up. Sometimes these thoughts break us down and undermine us.
The first step is awareness. Become aware that you make your reality and that your brain is a powerful tool for how you interpret the world. It is in fact the only tool for how you interpret the world. Everything you see in the real world is just a construct in your head. A translation of your senses into a mental experience.
With that in mind, you need to learn to game the system. You need to start with beliefs that will lift you up and repeat them. You need to repeat the words that will make you soar. You are mighty. You are beautiful. You are a blessing to the world.
It’s called ‘gaming the system’, where you identify a trick to success and exploit it. It’s common in a game to have a certain behavior that gives you an advantage. Sure, well thought out games tend to have more complicated exploits, but there are behaviors that more frequently result in success. Identifying the techniques that will help you succeed is ‘gaming the system’.
identify what you need to believe, to succeed, and make it your truth.