When it comes time to creating a new character to play in any tabletop roleplaying system, we often let our imaginations run wild (which is absolutely a great thing) trying to come up with the most clever, creative, crazy character ever. For me, anyways, the more creative and clever a character theme I can come up with, the more I enjoy building that character from the ground up and the more I enjoy playing them. However, what would happen if we try a different approach to character creation? What if we brought it a bit closer to home? It might just open our eyes a bit.
The different approach I am proposing is: play yourself.
Granted, this is going to be a bit more complicated than that. You will need to mold your character around the system and theme of what you are playing. Whatever character you decide to play, be it as close as possible to what you can do in real life or not, the most important part is to have their personality match yours entirely. Now, I do not want you to give your new character your personality as you think or feel others see it, but as you yourself see it. This will require you to be completely honest with yourself and will take a bit of self-reflection. We might not like doing this but I feel, strongly, that we will benefit from this exercise.
Please, only try this if both of the following are true: 1) you are playing with a tight knit group of friends who know you very well, and 2) that you let them know, explicitly, that you are playing a character with your personality. I say this because people tend to behave differently when they are around others they do not know as well. We only truly open up and are most comfortable being vulnerable in front of our close friends; we trust them and trust is the willingness to be vulnerable. I also say this because it may not be as obvious as we think to everyone that you are playing yourself.
To me, this exercise can yield some outcomes that will be beneficial to you. The most obvious one that comes to mind is that how you see yourself is not how your friends see you. Your close friends most likely see you differently than you do. This exercise will allow you to see yourself at a different angle and see where you can work to grow as a person. And your friends, more likely than not, will be happy to help you on that journey. This can help you work through issues you are having in your life and help you move forward.
Have you ever tried this before? How did it go? Please feel free to leave a comment and/or share on Twitter.