By following the curiosity’s lead

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Back in 2013, I looked at my wishes and discovered I had a big dream — looming and raising its head above water for some time but previously pushed aside and hidden — to write and share my writing.

At the same time, I had the idea that I didn’t want to write a book. I didn’t consider a short story (which I had gathered some practice at writing by then) to be a book, and writing a novel appeared daunting and time-consuming. …


The abundance and multidimensionality of networks in our lives

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Creative processes involve many acts of self-help. We get an idea, and then we look for means and steps to make it a reality. Even the ignition of an idea involves self-help. We put ourselves into environments that might ignite ideas, or we tap into our past experiences to get one or another.

This epiphany was one of the fun products of working on this article and contemplating networks inside and around us. Above that, the whole adventure was an unexpected and enlightening discovery.

The birth of an idea

It started with the wish to learn more about game elements and how they translated into…


And there’s no peak either; it can only go up and gain you experience points

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We, humans, are paradoxical beings. We talk about beneficial practices and how to keep them up, but we also hope that a one-time pill or a switch will make those habits automatic.

But it doesn’t. Even to such a fundamental practice as being kind to ourselves. It might be relatively new to appreciate the importance of being kind to ourselves, but many of us have heard the following statement and experienced it to be true:

Kindness to others starts with being kind to ourselves.

And even if we know this to be true, we discover again and again unkind thoughts…


May 2021 Newsletter by Gameful Life

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Poppies won’t appear here in Denmark until summer, but there are more and more bright colors in the gardens outside — even with the weather still being quite moody.

And the feeling of many contrasts and moodiness in the everyday rhythm, about which I reported last month, is still here. The life of a writer and entrepreneur is often quite unpredictable — with many surprises on the way.

Being gameful and playful definitely helps seeing many challenges as fun opportunities and not wrapping too much drama around them. Or if I do add some drama, then I stop as soon…


And how the extrinsic rewards you bestow on yourself become intrinsic.

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There are so many external stimulations around us. Also, in times of lockdown. Especially online. There is an overflow of information. And there is an overflow of enticing ways to attract attention and to motivate us to give that attention.

But the best motivation ever — and all experts in all disciplines studying and helping ourselves, humans, agree here — is the one coming from within. It is called intrinsic motivation.

“Intrinsic motivation refers to behavior that is driven by internal rewards. In other words, the motivation to engage in a behavior arises from within the individual because it is…


Dictionaries, glossaries, thesauri, encyclopedias, and their alphabetical magic

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Some time ago, I announced that I was on a mission to share gameful wisdom. Here is the story.

In that story, I introduced myself as a life gamer and a self-motivational game designer, and I expressed a wish to share my epiphanies related to self-help which appear when I read books about game design.

At the end of the story, I became aware that the article was not the first in that collection. The mission was already there for quite some time, but I didn’t call it “Gameful Wisdom” until then.

In fact, I guess this mission was born…


Turning your life into fun games makes it easy.

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Hardly anyone will argue that we humans need each other. We are social beings, and we can’t survive alone on our own.

But we are also paradoxical beings. To be social and be able to ask for help we need to support ourselves to be able to ask others for help and receive it wholeheartedly.

Just like in that old wisdom:

“You can lead a horse to water … but you can’t force him to take the water you offer.”

— Bob Burg and John David Mann, The Go-Giver: A Little Story About a Powerful Business Idea

It all starts…


By approaching them mindfully, incrementally, and playfully

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We humans have very ambitious minds. As soon as we achieve something, we forget about the significance of that wish — however great it might have been — and yearn for more. Often much more.

But celebrating achievements is vital. And it is not as complex as we might think it is.

Let’s consider the “Who,” “What,” “When,” “Where,” “Why,” and “How” of celebrating the achievements.

Why

Here is one of the most brilliant reasons why it makes sense to celebrate our achievements, however small:

“Taking time to recognize what you’ve accomplished has a domino effect. Knowing that you will celebrate…


It is called Self-Gamification

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Our lives are full of ups and downs. And we can perceive some downs as ups and vice versa in retrospect. This is how paradoxical we are. But what do we do now, in the middle of life’s adventure? And we are all in the middle of it as long as we live — no matter at which stage of our lives we find ourselves.

I am grateful to have discovered a tool bringing three skill-sets together, which help to bring ourselves back onto the happy path of life.

I call it Self-Gamification.

What is Self-Gamification?

Self-Gamification is the art of turning our…


The powers of awareness, small steps, and gamefulness to boost your project management from tedious to exciting, engaging, and fun.

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Often, the name of a concept does not give away everything about it. This applies to Gameful Project Management. As with gamification itself, it is much more than just adding “points, badges, and leaderboards” to your operational processes and reporting systems.

One of the most prominent authorities in gamification, with whom I have had the honor of talking online, Yu-kai Chou, often emphasizes — including in the sub-title of his acclaimed book — that

gamification is “beyond points, badges, and leaderboards.” — Yu-kai Chou, Actionable Gamification

Self-Gamification as a source

While creating content for project managers, I lean on the approach I call Self-Gamification

Victoria Ichizli-Bartels

Life gamer, life coach, top writer, author, engineer; originator of Self-Gamification — an art to turning life into fun games → optimistwriter.com

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