The Social Benefits of Gaming: How gaming can help you in everyday life

The goal of this blog is to share with you the story of a nerd.  A nerd who was initially unsure of himself but was able to come out of his shell through gaming.  Not just video gaming, but board gaming and, my favorite, tabletop roleplaying.  Gaming taught me valuable lessons that are applicable in everyday life.

Before we dive into these lessons, let me share a little bit about myself.

I cannot say with certainty when I realized I was a nerd.  Perhaps it was in high school, perhaps sooner.  However, in high school is definitely when I started associating myself with being a nerd.  I did play varsity sports, but never thought of myself as a jock; wrestling was the only varsity sport I participated in where one could say “that’s a jock sport.”  I associated more with the “nerdy” things I was into; things like Anime, video games, math, and physics.  Needless to say, whenever I was out of my comfort zone I became incredibly closed off; you could even have described me as brooding (I did always have a scowl on my face).

The biggest change in this uncomfortableness started in college when I was introduced to tabletop roleplaying games; specifically Dungeons and Dragons.  This is where the shell cracking started.  You could be anyone you wanted to be in these games, these adventure paths, and no one would criticize you, no one would question you, no one would wonder “what is this person doing?”  Everyone there was there for one thing; to have fun.

The largest crack in my shell occurred in my last semester of my undergraduate career, fall 2005, when, during lab, I mentioned, as an aside, to my lab partner that I like tabletop roleplaying.  Unbeknownst to me, a classmate, who I did know, but only through a couple of classes, overheard me and struck up a conversation about tabletop roleplaying.  He mentioned that he was trying to get a group together for a Shadowrun campaign and wanted to know if I would be interested.  I said “sure” and the rest is history.  I still game regularly with this classmate and he and his family have become some of my closest friends.

Looking back over the years of gaming, I started to pull out lessons that gaming has taught me.  Throughout this blog, I will share with you the lessons I have learned through gaming and how they are applicable in your professional life.

If you are a little unsure of yourself, have issues adjusting to new situations, or are a nerd looking for new gaming ideas, then this blog is for you.  For if I could overcome my awkwardness through gaming, then anyone can.

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