A 5-minute epiphany of a life-gamer on the unpredictability of our own behaviors

Photo by Bermix Studio on Unsplash

I am an entrepreneur, so understandably, my life is not the same every day. And still, I yearn to have some routine and predictability. Surprises in real life are not as welcome as they might be in other settings. Like games.

I thought I wanted to start my days by working on my books. I am a writer, after all. But in the past week, I found myself starting — willingly! I must emphasize — working on an online course. Something I thought I dreaded for three years. Last week, I started working on one, creating conversational videos, finished it…


April 2021 Newsletter by Gameful Life

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It’s only a week since April started, but see how much has happened already: April’s Fool’s Day, Easter, and a couple of work and school days. The weather is full of changes too: snow, rain, sleet, sun, wind, heat, cold. One word to describe it: moody.

I discovered the same moodiness in the variety of tasks I have to attend to during the day. Some are short and intensive, others long and intensive, slow and monotonous, and other possible variations.

What do we do with such moodiness? Meet it with humor and gamefulness, of course! April is gameful too. Life…


Hey, fantastic friend!

One huge objection that is a slight deviation from my challenge since yesterday, which I will mention in a minute.

There is nothing one-dimensional in you! No one is one-dimensional; we can argue on it later. ;D But you — and your writing is the proof of it — are an inspiring, intriguing, captivating, and shining writer, and I am sure also as a person too! These were four dimensions. I probably forgot a couple of hundred others.

Phew, now back to my own challenge. I am on the "No complaints challenge." I learned it from my…


Gameful wisdom on “practice and attention” and creating an exciting experience for ourselves.

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When you try to help yourself in whatever situation it might be, you become a designer. A designer of your life, but I also love to call this function a self-motivational game designer.

There is an open secret: any project, activity, or challenge have the same main components to their structure as do games. So, we are not only able to turn a project or activity into fun games for ourselves, but we can start by seeing them as such because they already are.

Therefore, the act of turning anything into fun games is about adjusting the available design of…


Sharing the treasures of game design and other inspiring resources

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Hello,

My name is Victoria, and I am a self-motivational game designer. I am that because I turn challenges, projects, activities, tasks, and whole life into fun games.

You are a self-motivational game designer too. Maybe not consciously, but you are. I bet there were many occasions in your life when you timed activity, or you applied another gameful method to pep up and make what you do more exciting. Sometimes with the help of others, but more than not by and for yourself.

Any project and activity is already a game because it has all the main components of…


Honestly tricking our minds into bypassing fears and upsets

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When I started sharing the Self-Gamification (= an approach to turning life into fun games by bringing anthropology, kaizen, and gamification into a strong synergy) with others, some people told me that I was tricking my mind. My immediate answer was a cheerful “Yes.”

Only in retrospect did I consider that the statement about tricking my mind could be seen as an accusation of being dishonest with my brain, or in other words being dishonest with myself. That I hadn’t solved or overcome my procrastination but had tricked my mind into doing what I wanted to do.

After contemplating this…


It’s easier to handle upsets in a game.

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Mindfulness and being in the moment raise the question of positivity. I’ve come across several articles on social media, press, and online discussing false positivity or even tyranny of positivity. The concern is that there is a tendency to turn everything into a positive and that we might suppress negative feelings, which have their reasons for cropping up.

I can understand this concern. Denying or suppressing an upset doesn’t make it go away. Doing so can, in fact, make it grow stronger and lead to an ex- or implosion of emotions if fought for too long.

Self-Gamification has nothing to…


March 2021 Newsletter by Gameful Life

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March is a special month for me. I am originally from Moldova, and we have a special tradition.

Mărțișor — A beautiful Moldovan tradition

We celebrate the first of March by giving little signs of love and friendship to members of our families, friends, teachers, and colleagues. These small tokens are called Mărțișori (singular: Mărțișor). In the picture below, you can see my current collection. Some of them I got from my family and especially my sister — she once brought a whole bag of them for me to share and keep. …


It’s easier to commit in games wholeheartedly.

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“Life is not a game,” we often hear. “You have to be serious when you want to achieve or be good at something.”

But what is this “seriousness” needed to achieve something? Is it really the concentration and full engagement we need in order to make progress and be successful in a project? Or is this seriousness, in fact, the drama, the complaint we express before actually doing something so that we can prove to others that we are “serious” about that thing?

Athletes in Ninja Warrior or Olympic games are brought to mind now. I remember many interviews in…


We are not — or are less — afraid of games.

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Why does it make sense to turn games into fun games?

Here is one of my favorite reasons.

If I look at what I want or have to do as a game, then the stakes are not that high, are they? It’s just a game, isn’t it? So the drama, that seriousness I used to require in order to succeed, falls away. But if I add drama to what I do, then the stakes become enormous.

In most cases, the stakes are not high. Some projects or activities can be life-changing or even life-saving, but they don’t have to carry…

Victoria Ichizli-Bartels, Ph.D.

Top writer, author, coach, engineer; originator of Self-Gamification. New → 5 Minute Perseverance Game, 2nd Edition. https://amzn.to/3w4bvdW

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