Wednesday, September 5, 2012

TED Talk Tuesday: Jane McGonigal with The Game That Can Give You Ten Extra Years of Life

So, this week is the first week of school for my kids, and in honor of that, I'm going to present a TED talk which gets my kids (and me) excited!

Here's the description:
When game designer Jane McGonigal found herself bedridden and suicidal following a severe concussion, she had a fascinating idea for how to get better. She dove into the scientific research and created the healing game, SuperBetter. In this moving talk, McGonigal explains how a game can boost resilience -- and promises to add 7.5 minutes to your life.

Can gaming change the way we think about real life problems? The way we cope with big and little stresses? Can it improve our lives?

Let's hear from Jane:

Can't view video on the blog? Here's the link. 

I love this. I would love to see the stigma reduced on responsible gaming. I love to play games. I feel better when I take some time out to have fun. And it does change the way I think about my writing, in the very least.

I think it is fascinating that she actually used the framework of gaming to heal herself in real life.

What do you think? Are you going to let your kids play more games? Are you a gamer? What games do you prefer?

Can you think about applying these gaming skills to something in your life which you are struggling with? That mountain of laundry? That illness? That task that seems too daunting to take on?



  1. This was awesome. And made me feel better about the raging crossword puzzle habit I've developed recently. :-)

  2. LOL, Anna. My current obsession is Peggle. It's helping me get through all my daily chores. One load of laundry, one level of Peggle...
    Unload the dishwasher, one level of Peggle...

    One chapter of revision....

  3. My son's math grades from last year prove there is such thing as spending too much playing games. Now he doesn't argue when I tell him to practice his math. He knows better. :)

  4. Stina--Yes, there is a definite balance to everything. :) For my son, math is as fun as playing a game. English is the subject which pains him. :0

  5. I agree, it's finding balance in everything. Keeping our brain active and doing different things! My sons would love to know someone casting a positive light on gaming. I'll have to come back and watch later!

  6. Well, I think there is value to the problem solving skills and determination that gaming can help produce. Spending too much time on anything can be detrimental to responsibilities.

    But I think gaming has been demonized as the reason why kids are overweight, or struggling in school. I don't think we should have an all or nothing mentality about anything. And I do see value in gaming.

    But I support and encourage differences in opinions, and hoped this would be an interesting discussion.

    And, I do not judge how other people raise their kids. There is too much judgement already being throw at parents.

    Like Stina, I limit the amount of time my kids play games. (And the amount of time I play games.) :)

    Otherwise, these books will never get finished. :)

    Thanks for the comment, Laura!

  7. Can't wait to check this out. Sorry I didn't make it to the comments last week, I have been swamped with the first weeks of school and Labor day. I love the Elizabeth Gilbert and I'm looking forward to loving some more! This series is a great idea, H! Love it!

  8. hi heather! we met at anna's pool party a couple of weeks ago, and then i tracked down your blog, which i'm really enjoying. i LOVED this TED talk -- thanks for posting. and i look forward to following your writing projects too.

  9. Wow, I'm going to have to really think about this one. So interesting. Thanks so much for sharing it!

  10. Wow, fascinating and inspiring! Thanks for posting this. I had to laugh when she mentioned the Mario Brothers because when my kids were young, they liked to play it. I started playing it off and on, too, but one night my husband woke me up and asked what I was dreaming about because I was grinding my teeth so loudly. I was dreaming I was one of the Super Mario Brothers and was trying to jump over all the obstacles, so I stopped playing video games after that!

    But I've always loved games and grew up in a game-playing family. Board games, dice games, card games. And we did the same with our kids. Our family still plays games when we have gatherings. My favorite is Balderdash. We've had some healthy fits of laughter while playing it. Love this post, Heather. Am sharing it. Take care!

  11. Tina--WOO-HOO! Great to see you! Let's catch up!

    Kate--Welcome! It was great to meet you. So glad you connected with the talk. Shoot me an email and tell me how your writing is going!

    Sheri--I love how this talk makes me think about hurdles in life.

    Lynn--Love the dream. Games can be an incredible way to bring fun and laughter into our lives on a daily basis! Thanks for the awesome comment.

  12. What an awesome talk! Definitely gave me great ideas to better my life.
    Thanks for sharing it!