[GUEST POST] Stress Management for Everyone

Timothy Ho
Guest Writer (TJC)
Disclaimer: Guest posts represent the diversity of opinion within the world of gamification, and the views and opinions expressed in guest articles are those of the author. 

Let's face it, we've all been there before.

From the nervousness bubbling inside your stomach, to the hair pulling moments where we feel that we are far beyond saving, we have all been victims to stress. While there have been many efforts put in place to try help people cope with stress, not all have been effective.
Introducing to you gamification: how can you add gaming elements to existing stress management methods, to increase their effectiveness in reducing stress?

Contrary to that belief, games can actually help improve people's mood, reduce anxiety, and help provide relaxation to people.

The key to this is controlling people’s access to games. Overexposure to games can instead increase stress levels due to the constant want for players to stay at the top of the competitive ladder. (https://checkpoint.org.au/psychological-emotional-benefits-video-games-clinical-research/)
The game elements should be less competitive and targeted more towards individual achievements, rather than leaderboard stats. Challenges such as taking a walk outside or looking at nature/sun sets would be ideal as not only will it help to relax the mind, it can also help with one’s appreciation of nature, which has also proven to help reduce stress levels. The game should also not be too repetitive (or grindy) so as to prevent people from spending too much time on the game and in turn stressing themselves by trying to complete absurd amounts of challenges.

Stress management through apps: Aura & Headspace

Apps such as Aura (https://www.aurahealth.io) and Headspace (https://www.headspace.com) are already examples of gamification of stress management methods.
aura-app

Aura

The Aura app allows for users to track their data of their mindfulness. By keeping track for their progression, much like a fitness app, this game mechanic of keeping progress helps to encourage users to try and improve their mental state of mind so that they would be able to see some change at least, giving themselves that sense of satisfaction for improving themselves.
With the advancement of technology, the whole concept of gamification can become even more complex and provide more room for improvement to make stress management methods become even more effective. This would be a good method to help deal with stress as for younger generations, especially focused on studies and socialising. Integrating such gaming elements would suit them better as children are to be open and daring to try out new methods. (https://learnkit.com/2016/01/13/adult-learning-needs)

Gamifying experiences at school to reduce stress in youths

Teachers from Kansas and Virginia, USA, have been gamifying the learning experiences that their students have been going through. These teachers often set up special handshakes, or give students the option to choose between hugs, high fives, fist bumps etc to do with the teachers. Such personalized decisions that students can make to improve teacher-student relationships help to alleviate stress in students, and students can also get a sense of satisfaction from being able to see their relationship with their teachers progress to become better. (https://thecorecoaches.com/2015/06/when-i-was-classroom-teacher-i-moved/) (https://www.insideedition.com/hands-approach-teacher-has-special-handshake-each-her-22-students-40949)

Stress due to education affects students and younger children more as this is their first time dealing with such experiences. Hence by gamifying their experience, we can help to reduce stress in them.
Please follow and like us:
error