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Pokémon Go Improves Players’ Mental Health In These 3 Ways

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Pokémon Go Improves Players’ Mental Health In These 3 Ways

Pokémon craze is back and this time, it’s bigger and better than ever! The augment reality game Pokémon Go has already taken multiple nations by storm and continues to expand internationally.

While it’s not the first augmented reality game available for mobile, the exciting world of Pokemon has been spreading wildfire ever since its release. This revolutionary twist that’s caused players to start roaming their local neighbourhoods in search for Pokemon has had a number of reported health benefits. Most surprising, this was not only limited to physical health!

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Curious to understand how Pokémon Go could have such as significant positive influence mental health? Here’s three unforeseen benefits to partaking in this new craze.

1. Encourages Walking and Exploring Nature

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    Unlike conventional mobile games, an essential element Pokémon Go is exploring the real-life environment to progress through the digital world. For many players, partaking in this game involves a lot of walking, running, cycling and rambling.

    On a medical level, walking offers a wide variety of health benefits associated with it. Mayo Clinic revealed regular brisk walks  helps to elevate mood, boost coordination and balance, maintain a healthy body weight and even strengthen bones.

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    What’s more, walking through scenic natural areas can provide further mental health benefits. Research from a Standford University graduate found that walking through green areas of campus actually had a significant effect on positivity. Another study from 2015 published in “Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences” found that a 90-minute walk in nature greatly reduced negative thinking compared to a walk in the city.

    2. Creating More Social Interactions Between Players

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      Another element not often seen in mobile games is real-life social interaction. Conventional online multiplayer games are still limited to purely digital interactions. However, Pokémon Go actually brings people together. Many players report that while hunting for Pokémon they regularly notice, interact and make friends with others out playing the game.

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      It’s been seen that social activity can have a profound effect on our mental well-being and mood. In many cases, it’s even helped alleviate suffers from depression.Pokémon Go gives gamers a great incentive to socialize and meet others

      Pokémon Go gives gamers a great incentive to socialize and meet others who would usually recluse while playing video games.

      3. Providing a Boost of Motivation and Purpose

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        Our level of motivation can have a strong impact on our actions. Sometimes we know what we exactly what should be doing, but without the right motivation it simply doesn’t happen. Whether we lack in enthusiasm or suffer from depression, sometimes even getting out of bed in the mornings can become a challenge.

        Often, all we need is a sense of direction, purpose or reason to build momentum. Rather than staying in the house a stagnant environment, Pokémon Go is providing thousands of players with a fun reason to get out back out into the world.

        Pokémon Go is creating quite the social media buzz, many claim it’s helped them become more motivated and get through the struggles of depression.

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          Just Don’t Forget To Look Up From Your Phone

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            Allowing ourselves to get too carried away in this augmented reality adventure comes with a number of dangers. Here are three main considerations to ensure stay safe while playing Pokémon Go:

            • Demonstrate self-control – Addiction to any kind of game is not going to be healthy in the long-run. Try to keep this game as a fun addition to your life, not an obsession that dominates it!
            • Maintain situational awareness – Players have been caught up in a number accidents, from minor to major, due to lack of awareness of the real-world. So make sure you always watch where you are going, especially in busy, built-up areas or road crossing roads.
            • Don’t wander dangerously – Be cautious if the game is leading you to explore unfamiliar areas, especially if they are more dangerous than usual. It’s may be wise to avoid wandering after dark if you are on your own.

            Now with these safety considerations in mind, get on out there and try to catch ’em all!

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            Joseph Summers

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            Last Updated on November 22, 2021

            Thanksgiving: It’s About The Simple Things

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            Thanksgiving: It’s About The Simple Things

            Thanksgiving, a day of pure gluttony, football, and possible uncomfortable situations with family members that you may or may not like. Oh, yeah, and the whole “know and reflect on what it is to be thankful and grateful.”

            During the holiday season many people forget what this time of year is bout and are too worried about getting the “early-bird” deals on Black Friday and making sure that they have the perfect gifts for their loved ones. I am sort of a “Grinch” when it comes to the holiday season, mostly because of that mentality by many of the poeple around me.

            But instead of being grinch-like this holiday season, I decided to simplify things and get back to what this time of year is actually is about; being thankful for what I have and what I can give.

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            Simplify

            I’m not a “minimalist” in any real sense, but in the last few months the talks of Patrick Rhone and others have got me to rethink my stance. Can you really have too much stuff?

            Absolutely.

            And with all that stuff comes the burden and the weight of it on your back.

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            If you feel that the things around you are out of control, maybe it’s time to simplify and be thankful and grateful for what you have and use. Here are a few things that you can do to simplify:

            • You know those gadgets in the drawer that you said you were going to sell? Well, time to get the listing on eBay and sell them. Or, send them to a place like Gazelle. Even if they are old and won’t get money, you can at least recycle them.
            • Get rid of things you don’t need. Like old books, clothes, tools, etc. Have something that’s been laying around forever with no use? Donate it to a charity or church. If you aren’t using it, someone else could be.
            • Find your productivity tools and stick with them. Use tools and gadgets that serve multiple purposes so you can simplify your tool set.

            Be Mindful

            You don’t have to be a master Buddhist or meditator to be mindful (although, it can definitely help). Being mindful comes down to being cognizant of the present and not keeping yourself in the past or future. It’s about living in the moment and being aware of yourself and everything around you. It’s just being.

            Without getting too “California” on you, it is super important to be mindful during the holiday rush. Rather than worrying about the things that you forgot at your house on the way to relatives or thinking about the next stop in your endless holiday travels, just breath and think about what you are currently doing.

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            Spend the time with your family and friends and don’t crush the moment. Try not to concentrate so hard on getting the perfect photo of the “awesome moment” of the day and actually miss the awesome moment.

            Being mindful over the holidays will help you be with your families, friends, and yourself allowing you to enjoy your time.

            Reflect

            As the year is coming to a close (yes, it really is that close!) it’s a great time to start reflecting on what you have accomplished and what you haven’t. Within the next few weeks we will have a more throrough reflection article here at Lifehack.org, but reflecting every now and then over your holiday break is a great way to see where you have been doing well in your life and where you need to improve.

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            Reflection shouldn’t be used to “get down” on yourself. Reflection should be used to take an honset inventory of what you have accomplished, how you handeled situations, and what you can do better. If you journal everyday (a daily form of reflection) it may be a good time to start going over some of the things that you have written and start to put together a year’s end journal entry. I mean, how else will you write your autobiography?

            But, seriously, reflecting on yourself makes you aware of your successes and faults and helps you plan and make goals for the coming year. It makes you a better person.

            So, while you are stuffing your face with bird, stuffing, and mashed taters’, remember that the holidays are much more than the superficial things. Use this holiday to become a better person.

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            Featured photo credit: Libby Penner via unsplash.com

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